Dan’s Taste of Summer Countdown: Geoffrey Zakarian, Host of Taste of Two Forks

Geoffrey Zakarian, chef of The Lambs Club and culinary director of The Plaza in NYC, is no stranger to the culinary celebration that is Dan’s Taste of Summer Weekend.

Last July, as host of the inaugural Dan’s GrillHampton, Zakarian captured the spirit of the evening perfectly when he enthused, “It’s the Rolls-Royce of food under one tent,” as he strolled among the 16 chefs—eight from the East End, eight from Manhattan—competing in a grill-off while guests and celebrity judges sampled all the food and voted for the evening’s best.

GrillHampton returns this Friday, July 11, to kick off Dan’s Taste of Summer, and Zakarian is also back in the Hamptons for a second helping—only this time he’s cohosting the fourth annual Dan’s Taste of Two Forks on Saturday, July 12. As top chefs, winemakers and fine-food purveyors from the East End—some 60 in all!—look forward to gathering under the big tent at Sayre Park in Bridgehampton for the premier food-and-wine event of the season, Zakarian whets our appetite for a weekend of gastronomic indulgence as he reflects on the farm-to-table movement, guilty pleasures, the perfect drink for a summer night and more.

With GrillHampton under your belt, what are some particular things you are looking forward to at Dan’s Taste of Two Forks? Well, seeing all of the friends I know and cherish under one tent!

You host The Kitchen with Katie Lee, who’s also cohosting Dan’s Taste of Two Forks. What can we expect from the two of you teaming up at the event? She is amazing and has such great instincts with food. I think we will match up perfectly!

If you had two forks, what would you like to stick them in right now? First course, Scott Conant’s spaghetti alia oilio. Second fork, Jonathan Waxman’s roast chicken, with more Rosé champagne.

“Farm to Table” is an ever-growing concept and practice. How has the evolution of “local” changed the dining landscape in the past few years, both from the perspective of a chef and as a diner? It always takes a decade or more to see if things stick. I certainly hope they do. In general it’s a more complete and holistic way of eating and living.

Describe the moment that made you realize that food was going to be your calling in life. Her name was Genevieve and it was in Monte Carlo…

What is your culinary guilty pleasure? Really good licorice.

One dish that everyone should try at least once in life: Humble pie

Describe your relationship with food in three words. We are one.

What would we find if we snuck a peak into your refrigerator at home? Way too many packages of pre-sliced cheese.

The perfect drink for a summer night is… A French aperitif call Suze tonic, with a wedge of lime

Name three people in history you’d love to cook for. Keith Jarrett, Milton Friedman, Sean Connery

The world ends tomorrow. Your last meal would be…Dom Pérignon Rosé champagne—I’d be too nervous too eat.

Dan’s Taste of Summer Weekend kicks off with Dan’s GrillHampton on Friday, July 11, at 8 p.m. Dan’s Taste of Two Forks is Saturday, July 12—VIP admission begins at 6:30 and general admission at 7:30. Both events are held at Sayre Park, 156 Snake Hollow Road, Bridgehampton. For tickets and more information, visit DansTasteofSummer.com

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