Alumna Named Featured Chef at James Beard Foundation for Third Time

Posted on 2/25/2016 10:09:20 AM

Chef Kristin Butterworth, a 2001 graduate of the IUP Academy of Culinary Arts, appeared for the third time at the James Beard Foundation in New York City on February 2 to prepare a special five-course dinner.

Kristin ButterworthChef Butterworth, chef de cuisine at Lautrec, the fine-dining style restaurant at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Farmington, Pa., was honored to receive the invitation and said that she “hope[s], in a small way, it inspires females in this industry.”

Culinarians already have reason to be inspired by Butterworth, who is the youngest and only female chef to run a Forbes Five-Star and AAA Five-Diamond award-winning restaurant.

Butterworth completed her externship at the Boulders Resort in Arizona after finishing her culinary studies at IUP. From there, she began working at a privately-owned Italian restaurant, Luigi’s, before accepting her first position at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in 2003.

After leaving Nemacolin Woodlands in 2005, Butterworth spent time working at both the Sea Island Resort in Georgia and the Inn at Little Washington before returning to Nemacolin Woodlands in her current role in 2010.

That same year, Butterworth received her first invitation to perform at the James Beard Foundation, with the second invitation coming in 2012.

According to the Herald Standard, Butterworth said, regarding her recent invitation, "I felt nervous because it was my third time, it was a bigger deal. But it went better than I ever imagined."

The menu for the event, designed by Chef Butterworth, featured chilled squash soup, buckwheat-goat pierogi, and grass-fed wagyu beef among other menu items.

Special dinner events, like the event featuring Butterworth, are designed to support the James Beard Foundation’s mission to “educate, inspire, entertain, and foster a deeper understanding of our culinary culture,” according the organization’s website.

During events, guests are welcome to walk through the kitchen and participate in a question and answer session with the chef following dinner. Samantha Brown ('13), an IUP culinary and baking and pastry alumna, assisted with the event.