Staunton chef helps prepare Obama state dinner

Staff Report

Local executive chef Mike Lund was asked last week to help prepare the first state dinner for President Barack Obama, held last night in honor of Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his wife, Gursharan Kaur.

“The meal has been in the works for some time, but I found out that I was being considered only within the last 10 days,” said Lund, the executive chef at Zynodoa in Staunton, who spent Monday and Tuesday at the White House to assist in the preparations for the meal.

Tommy Kurpradit, the White House executive sous chef, invited Lund, a fellow alum of the highly acclaimed The Inn at Little Washington, to take part in the event.

The White House invited celebrated chef Marcus Samuelsson of Aquavit in New York City to help plan the meal. Samuelsson cooked alongside Executive Chef Cristeta Comerford. White House Executive Pastry Chef William Yosses prepared the desserts.

Dinner was served in a heated tent on the White House South Lawn. Guests dined at tables for 10 with apple-green linens. Deep purple flowers evoked the state bird of India, the peacock.

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