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The Lobster Institute's sixth annual Holiday Lobster and Wine Feast features the Maine Lobster Chef of the Year

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ORONO - The Lobster Institute and the University of Maine Foundation co-host this kick-off event to the holiday season featuring the award-winning dish of the winner of Maine's Lobster Chef of the Year Competition on Thursday, Dec. 4 at the University of Maine's Buchanan Alumni House.

This year's Maine Lobster Chef of the Year is Chef Stephen Richards of The World is Maine Oyster restaurant in Boothbay Harbor. He and restaurant owner Ralph Smith will be special guests at the event. Chef Richards' winning dish was a pumpkin powdered lobster, mascarpone and chestnut crispy polenta bar with roasted fig gastrique, which will be artfully recreated by the outstanding catering chefs at the University. Richards was a finalist in the competition by virtue of his win as the 'people's choice' in the Boothbay Region's annual Claw Down lobster bites challenge. His winning dish in that competition was a fried lobster mac and cheese.

University of Maine President Dr. Susan Hunter and her husband Dr. David Lambert will be the honorary hosts of the evening, and guests will have a chance to meet President Hunter at the reception.

The event starts with a champagne reception at 6 p.m. and is followed by a four course feast starting at 7. Additional highlights of the event are a fireside chat with Chef Richards, and a book reading by Cathy Billings, author of 'The Maine Lobster Industry: A History of Culture, Conservation and Commerce.'

This event is the Lobster Institute's only fund raising event of the year. In addition to the feast, there will also be a silent auction. Proceeds of the $75/plate dinner benefit the work of the Lobster Institute focused on conservation, outreach, research and education for a healthy lobster resource and a vital fishery.

'We always fill the house for this event that supports the work the Lobster Institute does for and with fishermen. The Institute's goal is to help sustain a healthy resource and a vital fishery,' said the Institute's director, Dr. Bob Bayer. 'Each year we serve the winning dish from the Lobster Chef of the Year competition. How can you go wrong with Maine's #1 seafood, and its #1 chef?' He added that a few tickets are still available by contacting the Lobster Institute at (207) 581-1442, or emailing This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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