Little Sisters of the Poor spokesperson Corinne Waldrop says the festival has grown consistently, and this year six chefs representing local restaurant group RVA Hospitality are on board to prepare dishes.
Other participants in this year’s lineup include Perch owner and chef Mike Ledesma, Michael McClure formerly of Lulu’s, William Erlenbach of Stratford University’s Glen Allen campus and, of course, Elbling.
“It’s important to note, all these chefs donate their time. We purchase the food, ingredients and supplies,” Waldrop says. “They do this for free, they don’t take home any money. We’re really grateful for them.”
The festivities kick off at 4 p.m. on Friday, April 26 at the Little Sisters of the Poor St. Joseph’s Home in Henrico. Entrance is free, with a suggested $2 donation at the gate, and it’s pay-as-you-go for the food and drinks.
Elbling will serve four classic French dishes: a crusty salmon filet with spinach and lobster sauce; beef burgundy with noodles and veggies; creamed scallops, shrimp and crab in a French pastry crust; and puff pastry with veal, chicken and mushroom. Other dishes will include a fried shrimp po’ boy, Cajun style gumbo, ratatouille, duck confit with grits, braised short ribs and crab cakes, plus breads, croissants, pomme frites, sweet and savory crepes, chocolate mousse, assorted cookies and cream puffs. Ledesma and Benjamin Jackson of Little Saint plan to experiment with French-Asian fusion, serving up a fried chicken banh mi and a vegan version, respectively. French wine will be available for $5 per cup or $20 per bottle, along with wine slushies, sodas and water.
And while it’s all about the food, there will also be live entertainment, Parisian marketplace featuring clothing, jewelry and home goods, and a children’s area on Saturday.
RVA French Food Festival
Friday, April 26 4-8 p.m.
Saturday, April 27 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
1503 Michaels Rd