3rd Annual Bacon at the Bear

August 11, 2018 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Bacon at the Bear logo 3 The 3rd Annual “Bacon at the Bear – An Appalachian Culinary Experience” will be held on Saturday, August 11, 2018 and will benefit New Hope Blount County Children’s Advocacy Center.

BCCAC_logoThis casual, interactive event features Dancing Bear Appalachian Bistro’s Executive Chef, Shelley Cooper, along with guest chefs. These amazing chefs will prepare dishes at stations throughout the Bistro, patio and event center. Guests are invited to roam about the venue and enjoy tasty and unique dishes, while meeting and mingling with the chefs and each other in a setting like no other!

*Menu and guest chefs subject to change

See the full Chef lineup and menus from the 2017 event below, and stay tuned for the 2018 information!

Chef Shelley’s Bacon at the Bear Menu:

  • MAIN
  • Watermelon, Red Onion, Basil, Mint, Salty Cheese Salad
  • Smoked Whole Hawg, New Potatoes, Grilled Corn, Shrimp
  • Grilled Peaches, Larry’s Honey, Butter Pecan Frozen Custard


Chef Geoff Kenney | Knoxville, TN

Cru Bistro and Wine Bar, Knoxville

Geoff got his start in the culinary world at age 15. It quickly grabbed his attention and he loved being able to create with food. He attended University of North Carolina at Wilmington where he earned a degree in Political Science. Upon graduation, he worked with Chef Shawn Wellersdick of the Port Land Grille in Wilmington North Carolina. Chef Shawn showed Geoff how to cook with local ingredients and sparked his passion for creative local cuisine.

Geoff moved to Knoxville ten years ago and began working as the Executive Chef at LaCosta on Market Square. He has also been the Executive Chef at The General Morgan Inn (Greeneville TN) and Nama Sushi Bar.

He currently leads the culinary teams at Cru Bistro and Wine Bar in Knoxville. He is excited about the direction that Knoxville has taken in embracing and sourcing local ingredients.

Chef Jeff’s Bacon at the Bear Menu:

  • Confit Pork Cheeks
  • Fried Cornmeal Mush
  • Charred Okra
  • Benton’s Bacon Peach Jam

Chef Ryan Kline & Catherine Bittner | Ashville, NC

Zambra, Asheville

Ryan is a Yankee transplant to Asheville, NC hailing from Hastings, PA. After graduating with high honors from Indiana University of Pennsylvania Academy of Culinary Arts Ryan completed his externship at the prestigious Biltmore Estate in Asheville. Ryan continued on at the Biltmore for 2 years before accepting the Sous Chef Position at Storm Rhum Bar and Bistro in downtown Asheville. During his time at Storm, Ryan was named a Rising Culinary Star by the Asheville Citizen-Times. Multiple collaborations with Blind Pig, and staging throughout some of the Southeast’s Best restaurants led Ryan to be named Executive Chef/General Manager of Buffalo Nickel in West Asheville at age 25. Ryan served his post for two years before moving on to become the Chef at Adam Bannasch’s Zambra in downtown Asheville. Ryan now showcases his farm-to-table eclectic global cuisine and heads the culinary team at Zambra. Zambra has recently been named the most romantic restaurant in North Carolina by the USA today, and has been consistently been named most romantic and best wine list by the Mountain Express of Asheville, NC. Outside of work Ryan enjoys golfing and spending time with his soon to be wife Catherine and their pit bull Blueberry.

Chef Ryan’s Bacon at the Bear Menu:

  • Grilled Peach, Vadeon Blue Cheese, Shaved 18 Month Benton’s Ham, Candied Peanuts, Mizuna, Pedro Ximenez Vinegar (Served on a Plate)
  • Shrimp & Pork Albondigas, Calasparra Rice, Smoked Pork & Shellfish Broth, Herbs, Pimenton Oil (Served on a Small Bowl)

Ashley Capps | Asheville, NC

Buxton Hall, Asheville

Ashley’s connection with food began at an early age, cooking and baking throughout her youth in Burlington, N.C.
In 2002, Capps moved to Asheville, N.C., to pursue a degree in fine arts, and it was her passion for creating that took her from the studio to the kitchen. In 2005, Capps graduated from the Asheville Buncombe Technical Community College with an AAS Baking and Pastry Arts degree. Following her graduation, Capps applied her training to her pastry cook position at Five and Ten Restaurant in Athens, Ga., where she quickly transitioned to pastry chef before relocating to New York for a stint as a pastry cook at Eleven Madison Park. In 2010, Capps returned to Asheville to work in pastry production for Farm and Sparrow Bakery where she worked for two years before moving on to become the opening pastry chef at MG Road Bar and Lounge. , Capps went on to serve as the opening pastry chef for Rhubarb, an Asheville establishment named to Bon Appetit’s “Top 50 Best New Restaurants” and Southern Living’s list of “100 Best New Restaurants in the Southeast”. Following her time with Rhubarb, Capps went on to join the Buxton Hall team, where she currently serves as the pastry chef. Since the restaurant’s opening, Buxton Hall has received much national acclaim including being named one of Bon Appetit’s Top 10 Best New Restaurants for 2016!

Travis James Schultz | Asheville, NC

Buxton Hall, Asheville

Travis James Schultz, one of four siblings, was born into the service industry. His family bought The Fireside Inn Restaurant in Highlands, North Carolina when he was eight years old. Travis started as a dishwasher and worked his way up to eventually run the kitchen at The Fireside Inn for two seasons. His family sold the restaurant in 2007, which led to Travis attending culinary school in Denver, Colorado. He continued his education at the International Culinary Institute for Foreigners in Asti, Italy and also at Chef Martel’s Culinary Institute in Paris, France. When Schultz returned to the states, he began working with Chef John Fleer at The Canyon Kitchen in Cashiers, NC. Travis worked with Fleer for three seasons as his sous chef before moving to Asheville, NC. Wanting to learn more about Indian cuisine, he worked for a time at Chai Pani, and helped open MG Road Bar & Lounge. It was here that he met Ashley Capps, his fiancé. After MG Road, he helped open Ben’s Tune Up with Chef Elliot Moss. After some time, Travis was recruited by Fleer to be a part of the opening team for Rhubarb Restaurant. He was the sous chef for three years, and also assisted with the opening of the Rhu Cafe and Bakery as the executive chef. Travis will start at Buxton Hall Barbecue as their chef de cuisine this August. When he is not working, you can find Travis drinking a beer, sitting on his porch, gardening, reading, and traveling.

Chef Travis’ & Ashley’s Bacon at the Bear Menu:

  • App 1: Dressed Up Tomato Toast or Heirloom Tomato Toast
  • Cherokee purple tomatoes, sea salt, cracked black pepper,Buxton’s smoky hog fat mayonnaise, bourbon glaze, sour grit white bread
  • App 2: Smoked Pork Rilette with Bourbon from Travis Schultz
  •  Wrapped in caul fat, confit sea scallop in Buxton’s hog fat, spiced tomatoes

Chef Mike Costello & Amy Dawson | West Virginia

Lost Creek Farm, West Virginia

Through their traveling kitchen based at Lost Creek Farm in north central West Virginia, Chef Mike Costello and his partner Amy Dawson share Appalachian foods in locales across the eastern U.S. Lost Creek Farm’s regionally-inspired menus include heritage foods such as traditional charcuterie handed down in local immigrant communities, wild harvested ingredients, and a variety of heirloom crops grown on their 180 acre farm. In an effort to preserve and promote their region’s diverse foodways, Mike and Amy are currently working to create a heritage-focused culinary incubator program and food storytelling lab at Lost Creek Farm.

Chef Mike and Amy’s Bacon at the Bear Menu:

  • WV-style Spanish Sausage
  • Bloody Butcher Cornbread
  • Wood Roasted Mortgage Lifters with Cultured Cream
  • Killed Nettles and Sprouted Collards with Benton’s Bacon
  • Shaved Pickled Ramps

Chef Anna Bogle | Knoxville, TN

Holly’s Gourmet Market – Knoxville

Anna Bogle hails from rural Blount County in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. Raised on a small family farm, Anna learned to love cows, a good ripe tomato, stack cake and the mountains at a very young age. Her upbringing was the basis of her decision to study Food Anthropology and Southern Appalachian History in college. Anna’s professional career in Southern Hospitality is wide ranging: from time spent in several kitchens in Asheville, NC, to co-owner of a catering and personal chef service in Greensboro, NC; from General manager of Magpies Bakery in Knoxville, TN to General Manager of Summit City Lounge in Whitesburg, KY.

Anna has contributed cocktail recipes to Ronni Lundy’s books Sorgum’s Savor and Victuals, as well as toSaveur magazine. Anna was recognized and one of the “5 under 35” series in 2013 by the Southern Foodways Alliance Publication “Gravy” as a promising Southern food and drink professional. Currently a board member of the Appalachian Food Summit, Anna continues practicing her craft at Holly’s Gourmet Market and Holly’s Eventful Dining in Knoxville, TN, where she serves as Executive Sous Chef. A devoted aunt to five wonderful young nieces, Anna spends her rare spare time at her float house on Norris lake – kayaking, reading, and sipping good bourbon in the company of her faithful dog Little Dude.

Chef Anna’s Bacon at the Bear Menu:

  • Fried Zucchini Spears, Tomato Pies, Benne Seed Bacon, Smoked Cheddar Pimento Cheese Stuffed Banana Peppers, Ham & Jam Biscuits, Devil Eggs
  • Heirloom Cornbread Panzanella with local heirloom tomatoes, grilled melon, Benton’s bacon, and smoked ricotta salata

Dancing Bear has luxury accommodations available by calling 1-800-369-0111 ext. 1 or booking online.