Induction Gala – March 2023
By Sue Geary, Vice Chargée de Presse, FWS, IWS, SWS
Event photos by: Diego Ramos
Members and guests of the Salt Lake City Bailliage gathered for our Annual Induction Ceremony on the evening of Saturday, March 25, and what a celebration it was! We assembled in the ballroom of Edison House, a new private social club in the heart of downtown Salt Lake City. Edison House was conceived by brothers George Cardon-Bystry and Charlie Cardon with the goals of bringing the energy of arts, culture, and vibrancy of big city living to Salt Lake in a space dedicated to inclusivity of people of varied backgrounds.
Edison House was fortunate to attract the talent of Executive Chef Zachary “Buzz” Willey. Willey served for 10 years as Head Chef at the popular Pallet Bistro. Prior to that, he was Sous Chef at Del Mar Country Club. Willey studied culinary arts at The Art Institute of California-San Diego. Willey and his staff provided a beautiful dinner and exceptional service.
Ceremony: Elevations, Inductions, Promotions, Honors, and Awards
We were honored to have Bailli Provencial Phil and Daryl Kress with us for this event. Phil presided as Induction Officer for one of his last events before completing his term of office. Having relied on Phil’s expertise and support over the past three years, the officiers were especially pleased that he could attend this important induction event. We appreciate Phil’s leadership, enthusiasm, and devotion to La Chaîne shown during his tenure as Bailli for the Far West Province.
First in the order of awards was the elevation of Andrew Cole Johnson as Bailli and recognition of Sheral Schowe as Bailli Honoraire. Through her skilled and energetic leadership, Sheral has sustained and revitalized our bailliage. She not only kept us going through the interruption of the Covid shutdown, but she has also overseen an increase in membership and attendance at our events. We are proud that Sheral will advance to the position of Bailli Provincial of the Far West Province and look forward to our continued association.
Cole Johnson assumes the position of Bailli with the enthusiastic endorsement of the officiers who have worked closely with him over the past three years. Cole has established essential infrastructure for our bailliage, including our new website, in his assignment as Vice Chargé de Médias Sociaux. He has produced the elegant programs for our dinners and has done most of the photography for our events. He is dedicated to La Chaîne and has represented our bailliage at regional, national, and international chapitres.
The ceremony continued with the inductions of five new members of La Chaîne and six new members of La Société Mondiale du Vin. Dame Rita Paxton, one of our founders, was promoted to Officier and honored as Grand Commandeur for her 40 years of membership and leadership. Maître de Table Resturateur Helen Petras was promoted to Officier Maître Restaurateur and awarded the honor Officier Commandeur for her many years of dedication to our bailliage. Chevalier Michael Hickey was honored as Silver Commandeur. Maître de Table Restaurateur Neil Cohen was promoted to Officier Maître Restaurateur. Maître Rôtisseur Hans Fuegi was promoted to Officier Maître Rôtisseur. (For more information about those who were promoted, see related articles on this site).
Bailli Honoraire Sheral Schowe presented the Bronze Star of Excellence to Bailli Andrew Cole Johnson for his many contributions to our bailliage. Sheral presented the Bronze Medal of Honor to Vice Échanson Kasey Dubler for his work in procuring exceptional wines to substantially increase both the volume and the quality of our bailliage cellar. Bailli Provincial Phil Kress presented the Bronze Star of Excellence to Vice Chancelier-Argentier Richard Pater for the work he has done to greatly improve the financial integrity of our bailliage. Richard will assume the role of Provincial Chambellan in May while he continues to serve in his position with our bailliage.
Dinner and Entertainment
The reception featured crudité of seasonal vegetables with hummus, chipotle hummus, eggplant purée, and cucumber mint yogurt. An expansive raw bar included chef’s selection of East and West Coast Oysters, poached local shrimp, clams, mussels, and crab claws cocktail of mignonette, horseradish, lemon, and micro tabasco.
Guests were poured MV Moët & Chandon Impérial Brut, AOC Champagne served in Methuselah to complete this festive start of the evening.
As members and guests were enjoying the delicious hors-d’œuvres, our new Bailli Cole Johnson donned a protective apron and stepped out to the patio to sabrage a Jeroboam of MV Moët & Chandon. And for another something you don’t see at just any Chaîne event, the sons of both outgoing and incoming baillis, Professional du Vin Devon Schowe and Sommelier Grey Johnson, entertained the crowd with a lively rendition of The Boar’s Head. This performance was intended not as a duet but as a sing-along, but few, if any, sang along!
A first course of roasted beets, pickled mustard seed, hazelnut, mizuna, and orange vinaigrette was beautifully paired with 2014 Domaine Billaud-Simon, Chablis Les Clos, AOC Chablis Grand Cru. The second course offerings were a choice of Ahi tartare with spicy carrot, pineapple, and avocado salsa or vegan charred mushroom with miso eggplant, dashi, and fried shallot. The 2021 Domaine de la Verrière, Chêne Bleu Le Rosé, IGP Vaucluse was the ideal companion to both. The choices of third course were filet mignon with broccolini, pearl onion, pomme purée, and demi-glace or braised maitake with celery root purée, sweety drops, walnuts, and crispy eggplant paired with the exquisite 2011 Château Pontet-Canet, Grand Cru Classé, AOC Pauillac. The final course offerings were of Pots de Crème with Dulcey Chocolate, walnut, and honeycomb or cobbler of apple blackberry compote, almond rosemary crumble, and whipped crème fraiche. The 2012 La Maison Cazes, Les Clos de Paulilles Traditionnel, AOC Banyuls proved to be the perfect accompaniment.
We were pleased that Beverly Hills Bailliage Vice Chargée de Presse Karissa Rischall and Stephen Rischall could join us for this dinner. We recognize Monty and Christine Botosan who traveled from Connecticutt at attend this event. Events Director Sophie Dunkle, whose attention to detail, helped make this event a success. Finally, we wish to thank all of the culinary staff for their superb professional service.
Inductees à la Chaîne:
Sean Steinmann, Chevalier
Mary Steinmann, Dame de la Chaîne
Michele Hoffman, Dame de la Chaîne
Tanner Lenart, Dame de la Chaîne
Oliver Grey Johnson, Sommelier
Inductees à la Société Mondiale du Vin:
Chevalier Monty Botosan
Dame de la Chaîne Christine Botosan
Dame de Chaîne Tanner Lenart
Dame de la Chaîne Michele Hoffman
Dame de la Chaîne Tarja Dye
Sommelier Oliver Grey Johnson
Officier Rita Paxton
Officier Maître Restaurateur Neil Cohen
Officier Maître Restaurateur Helen Petras
Officier Maître Rôtisseur Hans Fuegi
Bronze Star of Excellence Bailli Andrew Cole Johnson
Bronze Mondiale Medal of Honor Vice Échanson Kasey Dubler
Bronze Star of Excellence Vice Chancelier-Argentier Richard Pater
Officier Commandeur-Officier Maître Restaurateur Helen Petras
Grand Commandeur-Officier Rita Paxton
Silver Commandeur Michael Hickey