Lori Baker and Jeff Banker from Baker & Banker became friends with Nick Balla of Bar Tartine back when he was manning the kitchen at O Izakaya in Japantown. Now, the chefs will be joining forces for a “Modern American Picnic,” part of the SF Chefs Dinner Party Project.

Since the dinner will be held less than a week after the Fourth of July, Banker said they wanted it to have an All-American feel to it.

“We want to make it a family-style event. With it being so close to July 4, we thought the idea of a picnic and families getting together to celebrate would work well as a concept,” he said.

As is the case with the other Dinner Party Project events, Baker said they want to do something different that they wouldn’t normally get to do in their own kitchens for regular service. He said the menu, while still coming together, will have plenty of American classics.

“We’ll probably have fried chicken as one of the main dishes along with plenty of cool sides, maybe some mac and cheese, cole slaw and watermelon. And then Lori will probably make a pie that works well in the summer,” said Banker. The dinner will be paired with seasonal beers that are on tap.

Banker said that the concept of the Dinner Party Project is great because it allows chefs to join together in the kitchen when they otherwise may not be able to. “We’ve seen Nick at plenty of other food events and have always wanted to work with him. But because of schedules, we don’t get a chance to go out and see a lot of our chef friends in town. So it will be nice to get together in our kitchen and work together on creating this dinner.”

Dinner Party Project: Modern American Picnic will be held at Baker & Banker (1701 Octavia Street) on Monday, July 9. There will be two seatings, one at 6:00 p.m. and one at 8:00 p.m. Tickets are $135/$125 for Visa Signature cardholders.



Photo Credit: SF Chefs