When Justin Beckett and Scott Stephens (Beckett’s Table) opened Southern Rail next to indie bookstore Changing Hands on Camelback Road, they figured there would be synergies, especially when it came to national cookbook authors touring through Phoenix. Maybe they’d plate up a few appetizers for book signings.
They never imagined the first opportunity would be such a major score: hosting a dinner for rock-star Southern chef Sean Brock from Charleston, South Carolina. Brock is kind of a big deal, especially among Southern food fanatics.
“Sean Brock is the guy who brought low-country cooking to the national scene,” Beckett says, who admits to having a bit of a chef-crush on the tattooed Virginia native.
Immediately following Brock’s Changing Hands book signing on Monday, November 17th, Beckett will welcome Brock with a four-course dinner featuring recipes from Brock’s new cookbook, Heritage. Seatings will begin at 6 p.m. (and continue every 15 minutes until the last seating at 8:30 p.m.).
Make reservations for the $95++ dinner (which includes a copy of Brock’s $40 cookbook) by calling Southern Rail at 602-200-0085. (Hint: hurry, this should sell out quick.)
“We are honored and excited to have someone with so much passion and experience in Southern cooking in our house,” Beckett says, who along with Stephens, gorged on a 10-course tasting menu at Husk, one of Brock’s signature restaurants in Charleston, before opening Southern Rail.
Heritage, which has been in the works since 2011, features Brock’s interpretation of Southern favorites like Pickled Shrimp, Hoppin’ John, Fried Chicken and Gravy, and Cracklin’ Cornbread (Side note: Husk serves the best damn cornbread I have ever eaten. Here is a picture of it I took in 2011)
Brock is a hot commodity in the foodiverse. As the chef of McCrady’s in Charleston, he picked up a 2010 James Beard Award for Best Chef in the Southeast, but it is Husk that put him in the national spotlight. In 2011, Bon Appetit magazine named Husk the Best New Restaurant. He has since opened a second Husk in Nashville. Brock was also a finalist for Outstanding Chef by the James Beard Foundation in both 2013 and 2014, and he has appeared on Iron Chef America and season 2 of The Mind of a Chef, which recently won a daytime Emmy for Outstanding Culinary Program.
Southern Rail opened in May of this year, the second restaurant from Beckett and Stephens (award-winning Beckett’s Table was the first). Beckett has been recognized as a Food & Wine People’s Choice Best New Chef Nominee as well as winner of several local awards, including Top Chef from the Arizona Restaurant Association.
(photo of Sean Brock by Andrea Behrends)
Sean Brock Heritage Cookbook Dinner
300 W. Camelback Rd.
Monday, November 17th
Seatings between 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.
Cost is $95 ++ but includes a copy of Brock’s Heritage book ($40 value)
Make reservations by calling Southern Rail at 602-200-0085
Note: If you can’t make the dinner but still want a book and a chance to meet Brock, Changing Hands (Camelback) is hosting a cookbook signing prior to the dinner. Call the bookstore at 602-274-0067 to purchase a ticket for the book signing-only event.