Events & Festivals

Food GPS' Lamb Showdown: In Which Walter Manzke, Steve Samson & Zach Pollack Cook You a Lamb Dinner

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Tue, Jan 31, 2012 at 7:00 AM

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If you love lamb more than, well, other very tasty farm animals, then you probably have someplace to be on Monday, Feb. 20, at 7:30 p.m. And no, we do not mean volunteering your services to the folks at Windrose Farm, although that's not a bad idea. Food GPS is presenting the first (hopefully of many) Lamb Showdown, featuring a six-course dinner prepared by three of the best chefs in town: Walter Manzke from upcoming République and Factory Baking Company will go up against Zach Pollack and Steve Samson, the chef-co-owners of Sotto.

Four of the said courses will feature American lamb, and the two desserts will showcase sheep's milk. Because you can't have a lamb showdown with, well, something else.

As diners, you'll get to vote on which chef creates the best disheswith "the boldest flavor, most originality and best presentation." The winning chef gets $500 "and of course greater glory." Of course.

Why all this lamb? Apparently it's Lamb Lovers Month -- who knew -- and as part of such a thing, the American Lamb Board is sponsoring the event. Beer (three beers per guest) will be from Eagle Rock Brewery, since even during Lamb Lovers Month, you get to drink booze instead of ewe's milk. Fifteen percent of event proceeds benefit the Special Olympics.

When we asked Food GPS' Josh Lurie why the sudden love for lamb, he told us a rep from the American Lamb Board approached him about building a lamb-centric event last fall. "That wouldn't have been reason enough to construct an event, but I like eating lamb, and in thinking about it, I saw this as a fun challenge to showcase a meat outside of the big three: pork, beef and chicken."

As for the chefs involved, Lurie said he wanted, as he often does for his food events, "talented people with range." Also, "Steve and Zach routinely butcher whole animals in-house, and I knew they would look beyond the rack and loin in developing their lamb dishes. Walter is another one of L.A.'s most talented chefs, and people probably know him best for his French cooking, but Asia's also been a big influence on him." Makes sense to us.

Lamb Showdown: Feb. 20 at 7:30 p.m. at Guelaguetza; tickets are $75 per person.

Follow Squid Ink at @LAWeeklyFood and check out our Facebook page. Reach the author at ascattergood@laweekly.com and follow her on Twitter at @AmyScattergood.

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