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Ripe Season
Bourbon House
(144 Bourbon St., 522-0111) Chef Jared Tees is taking advantage of the summer months of great seafood and produce for a seasonal menu with a distinct local flavor. His Two-Course Seasoned Lunch specials, starting at $10, include seafood dishes such as Golden Meadow Soft-shell Crabs and Lafourche Raised Redfish, and produce including Creole tomatoes and Amite blueberries. Each lunch special includes a choice of a salad or cup of seafood gumbo, turtle soup or soup du jour. Lunch is served in the main dining room from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and in the oyster bar from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.

Comfort Food
Restaurant Cuvée (322 Magazine St., 587-9001) is putting a little Southern Comfort in its first-ever James Beard House Dinner scheduled for July 21 at the James Beard House in New York City. The New Orleans-born spirit will be featured in the menu that includes Southern Comfort Barbecue Pork Bell with celeste figs and candied pecans, and the rabbit confit salad with Southern Comfort Louisiana peaches. Tickets for the dinner can be purchased by calling (212) 627-2308.

Trifecta
Anyone could tell that Restaurant August (301 Tchoupitoulas St., 299-9777) Chef John Besh's audacious passion for presenting three different versions of the same item on a dish is a big reason why Times-Picayune food critic Brett Anderson bestowed only his second five-bean review on the restaurant. (Peristyle is the other.) Besh's hat-trick cooking also inspired Wine & Spirits magazine writer Bill St. John to interview the chef. St. John's feature details Besh's three-pronged approach; with lamb, for instance, Besh will present a lamb wrapped in phyllo dough, a three-bone rack of lamb, and a cassoulet prepared with the lamb shoulder braised in a variety of spices and other flavor enhancers. Besh is clearly on a roll that began last December with a bon mot from USA Today critic Jerry Shriver, then recognition from food writer John Mariani and later food author John T. Edge (who in Cooking Light referred to August as "a gilt-edged jewel box").

And the Winners Are ...
Here are the top food winners from the recent New Orleans Wine & Food Experience: GW Fins (Best in Show, with the seared sea scallops with melon relish); Wolfe's of New Orleans, Pelican Club, Muriel's Jackson Square and Grill Room (gold medal, entree); and Aramark and Zoe Bistrot (gold medal, pastry).

Sara Roahen is on vacation. This week's column powered by the Big Easy Roll at Wasabi. -- David Lee Simmons

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