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Craig Shelton, chef of The Ryland Inn in Whitehouse, N.J., will talk about pairing food and wine 7 p.m. Wednesday in the auditorium of Kirby Hall of Civil Rights.

Free and open to the public, the event is sponsored by the Lafayette Wine Society.

The Ryland Inn Wine List, composed by Shelton, features over 1,000 selections and was recently voted “The Best French Wine List of America” by Restaurant Hospitality at the 8th Annual World of Wines Festival in Laguna Niguel, Calif. It consistently has received Wine Spectator’s “Best of Award of Excellence” since 1994.

Shelton has trained with many of the finest chefs of Europe, including Joel Rubochon. He has held important positions in many of America’s top restaurants, including Ma Maison (Los Angeles), La Côte Basque, Le Bernardin, The Rainbow Room, and Le Chantilly, and most recently served as David Bouley’s sous chef for two-and-a-half years, helping Bouley to achieve its Four Star rating from the New York Times.

Since taking over control of The Ryland Inn, Shelton has received a torrent of critical acclaim, including the first “Extraordinary” (the suburban equivalent of Four Stars) from the New York Times. Mr. Shelton has been selected as one of 20 chefs to appear on Public Television’s “Great Chefs of the East” series. The Ryland Inn was recently rated Four Stars and “arguably America’s best country French restaurant” by Bob Lape of Crain’s N.Y. Business Review, and selected by Gourmet Magazine as “One of the Top 10 Country Restaurants in America.”

Shelton earned a degree in molecular biophysics and biochemistry from Yale University in 1982; was a Presidential Scholar (Gold Medal); and previously attended St. Paul’s School in Concord, N.H. When not cooking, he tends to his several-acre vegetable and herb garden on the 50-acre property of The Ryland Inn. He is a dual citizen of France and America.

The event is the second organized this semester by the Wine Society. Mark Anthony King, wine specialist and distributor for Southern Wine and Spirits, Philadelphia, Pa., hosted a wine-tasting seminar Feb. 19 in Marquis Dining Hall.

The Wine Society was founded in November last year by Gabriel Valentin ’02 of LiMoges, France, and faculty adviser Ed Gamber, associate professor of economics and business, to bring students and faculty together to learn about the world of wine.

Categorized in: Students