The competition heats up
Iconic Austin barbecue joint hosts grill session with women and nonbinary chefs
Regardless of who Texans expect behind a grill, it's a creative hotspot for anyone who enjoys some cross-hatched summer foods. Famed Austin pitmaster Aaron Franklin is opening up his spot over the flames on April 27 to spotlight women and nonbinary chefs, and raise funds for the Austin Chapter of Les Dames D’Escoffier.
This is the third iteration of “You Grill Girl!,” which has aided the foundation in awarding more than $217,000 in scholarships to Austin recipients. A pandemic hiatus followed the first year, but after a successful revival in 2022, this event is looking like a strong annual tradition.
It’ll all go down in the Franklin BBQ parking lot, where well-known chefs and grillmasters will prepare bites ranging from traditional dishes to boundary-pushing combos. Franklin BBQ’s own Amie Brown, Theo Nesland, and Sarah Petmecky team up to create one spread that toes that line with Buffalo smoked ribs, pickled vegetables, and a blue cheese sauce.
Some chefs bring influence from cultures outside of mainstream Texas barbecue, like Annie Thomas of Emmer & Rye offering a Jägerschnitzel skewer with sauerkraut and lemon, and Laura Sawicki of Oseyo obscuring the grilled element in banana milk, strawberry milk, and Gochugaru fudgesicles.
There will certainly be a lot of meat, but Allie McMillan of ATX Cocina brings quail and Janie Ramirez of Dai Due brings crawfish, among other smart planning to lighten things up. Some bakers, like Susana Querejazu of Lutie’s and Abby Love of Abby Jane Bakeshop, are making sure the carbs are well-covered with bread and pizzas, respectively.
“You Grill Girl! is easily one of the best food and drink events in Austin every year, not just because of the participants, but because of the mission,” said Les Dames D’Escoffier Austin president Anna Tauzin in a press release. “The people who work to make this event possible understand the positive impact of lifting up the women in our food and beverage community. In Austin especially, we have a great group of members, volunteers, and sponsors who believe in what we are doing, and we’re incredibly grateful for their support.”
There will also be raffles and a silent auction for further fundraising after ticket sales. Les Dames D’Escoffier is a large culinary organization with chapters around the world, but this event specifically benefits the scholarship program and the Austin community.
The following chefs will participate in “You Grill Girl!” 2023:
- Amie Brown, Theo Nesland, and Sarah Petmecky, Franklin Barbecue
- Susana Querejazu, Lutie’s
- Abby Love, Abby Jane Bakeshop
- Allie McMillan, ATX Cocina
- Jules Stoddart, Hardware Pastries/Little Ola’s Biscuits
- Annie Thomas, Emmer & Rye
- Kristine Kittrell, The Diner Bar
- Jen Rodi, 3 Small Plates Catering
- Sarah McIntosh and Chloe Kennedy, Epicerie
- Janie Ramirez, Dai Due
- Laura Sawicki, Oseyo
- Meredith Shaffer, Camp Lucy
- Adrian Lipscombe, 40 Acres Project
- Amanda Turner, Olamaie
- Arabia Sabree, Quality Seafood
Tickets ($85 for general admission, $110 for VIP with early entry and gift bag) for the April 27 event from 7-10 pm are available on Eventbrite.