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Meet the Chef Dinners

At Unpretentious Palate, we believe storytelling takes many forms. A big part of what we do, of course, is to tell the stories of what’s happening in Charlotte’s restaurants, bars, and food community. But you don’t always need us. Our Meet the Chef series will merge storytelling and dining — the two things UP is all about. We want you to get to know some of the chefs around town, but aren’t big on stuffy meet-and-greets or formal discussions.

Each dish will tell a story: the amuse bouche, which represents the chef overall; one course based on the chef’s childhood; another inspired by a restaurant or chef that has heavily influenced their career. As you enjoy the amuse and each of the four courses, the chef will explain the story behind the dish.

Save the date for these Meet the Chef Dinners in 2024!

  • January 29th at 6 p.m. with Chef Kaley Laird of Mimosa Grill (Recap + Photos)
  • June 23rd at 6 p.m. with Chef Sam Hart of Counter-
  • September 16th at 6 p.m. with Chef Andres Kaiffer of Customshop
  • December 2nd at 6 p.m. with Chef Chris Coleman of Haymaker

Check back for ticket sales!

Thank you to our sponsor:


Photos from Past Events

Chef Diminich and staff put out an excellent dinner. TM Petaccia/UP

Full house for Meet the Chef. This is this first time UP members purchased all the tickets during the exclusive members-only access period. No at-large public tickets were available for this event. TM Petaccia/UP

Lewis Donald starts guests off with a “caviar bump.” TM Petaccia/UP

Amuse course with smokes and grilled duck, quail, and pineapple with a collard green/green tomato chimichurri. TM Petaccia/UP

Ashley Boyd and Lex Druhan receive applause from our Meet the Chef diners. TM Petaccia/UP