(GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass.) – Railroad Street Youth Project (RSYP) will hold its annual Culinary Arts Celebration at Crissey Farm (426 Stockbridge Rd, Great Barrington) on Monday, December 8, 2014, at 5:30pm. The evening is the culminating event for RSYP’s Culinary Apprenticeship Program, in which 14 young chefs learn food preparation and presentation for eight weeks under five master chefs, including the Red Lion Inn’s Brian Alberg, John Andrews’s Dan Smith, Allium’s Daire Rooney, the Williams Inn’s Adam Brassard, and the Kitchen on the Commons’s Zee Vassos.
“Unlike in past years when Railroad Street Youth Project has held multiple culinary dinners, this year we are focusing on one to celebrate these talented youth,” says RSYP Executive Director Ananda Timpane. “We are so grateful for the support that the entire community has shown in the past, and look forward to making this year’s dinner inspiring for every palate.”
RSYP has presented these dinners since 2006, when the Railroad Street Apprenticeship Program (RAP) first launched. Since then, over 200 young people from Berkshire County have participated in the apprenticeships in culinary arts, cosmetology, photography, and massage therapy, gaining valuable skills and experience and, in many cases, job opportunities with local businesses. Tickets, available November 1, are $125 per person, with proceeds supporting RSYP youth development programs and activities. Tickets can be purchased online at Railroad Street Youth Project (RSYP) and by contacting the RSYP Office at 413-528-2475.
Brian Alberg, is executive chef and director of food & beverage at The Red Lion Inn in Stockbridge and The Williams Inn in Williamstown. He is a staunch supporter of the local food movement and has established strong relationships with regional farmers and food producers, purchasing more than $650K in local foods annually.
Dan Smith is the owner and executive chef of John Andrews Restaurant in South Egremont. He is committed to buying local, organic, sustainable products and works with area small farmers and producers to develop his menu around their products.
Daire Rooney has been chef of Allium Restaurant + Bar in Great Barrington since 2012 after working as the personal chef to actress Meryl Streep, executive chef at De La Vergne Restaurant, executive chef at Brix in Pittsfield and as lead chef at the Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters Tournament.
Adam Brassard is the executive chef at The Williams Inn in Williamstown, where he is committed to using local, seasonal ingredients.
Zee Vassos, owner and executive chef at The Kitchen in Lenox, has created a dynamic and extensive breakfast and lunch menu drawing in food lovers from all over New England.
About Railroad Street Youth Project
At Railroad Street, youth take the lead. They explore their full potential and become equipped to meet the challenging transition to adulthood. RSYP’s professional adult staff expertly pairs youth-generated ideas with community resources, empowering youth to create and oversee a wide range of innovative, life-changing projects. Unmatched in mission and scope, RSYP excels in helping youth find their voice and realize the benefits of their commitment to themselves and their community. RSYP serves 14-25 year old residents of southern Berkshire County and the surrounding area with mentoring and apprenticeship programs, a sexual health education initiative, an all-youth board that funds innovative, youth-inspired projects and trips, job training and career counseling, and a drop-in center where we offer referrals, counseling, mediation, and advocacy services. Railroad Street Youth Project’s drop-in center is located at 60 Bridge St., Great Barrington, Mass.