You may have seen Chef Ben Vaughn cleaning up on the Food Network show “Health Inspectors.” Now he’s touring the country as a teacher. As luck would have it, Mobilians have a chance to catch Vaughn live and unscripted at our very own Kitchen on George.

Make plans for Thursday, Aug. 22 to catch the host in action as he teams with Virginia College’s Culinard program and Kitchen on George to prepare a fantastic menu for this exclusive wine dinner. The feature is Maple Leaf Duck Farms Duck, and you’ll find it in every course of the meal excluding the amuse-bouche. Expect duck confit, duck breast, and even salted duck crackling on the peach cobbler.

Tickets are $50 per person and includes wine, $35 for the hungry abstainers. The corner of George and Savannah is already getting excited.

“We are honored to have Food Network TV star Chef Ben Vaughn in Mobile at Kitchen on George,” says Vice President of Retail Operations Ron Patak. “Guests at the event will have the chance to enjoy a unique menu accompanied by wines that will complement each course. It will be a dining experience to treasure.”

The dinner runs from 7 p.m. through 9 p.m. Call to reserve your spot immediately. (251) 436-8890.

Alabama Restaurant Week in full swing

We gave you a glimpse of it a couple of issues back, but now we are right smack dab in the middle of Alabama Restaurant Week.

Running through Aug. 25, the promotion is that participating restaurants will have two-course lunch specials that range from $5 to $15, and/or three course dinners that fit the $10 to $30 parameter. The 10-day event (lucky for us they had trouble with the math) really works in favor of the diner and helps us to celebrate the fine cuisine we have here in Alabama.

Visit www.alabamarestaurantweek.com for a list by county of all the participating restaurants in this statewide promotion. Click the map, then click the restaurant to see the special. I thought we were lucky to have 14 restaurants here in Mobile County, but Alabama’s (physically) largest county really cleaned up. Baldwin County has 39 participating restaurants!

MiMo’s Gastropub getting a new suit of clothes

It has only been a few months since MiMo’s became MiMo’s Gastropub, but the owners thought it was time to make it their own. The food has been incredible, and I am sure it will remain so, but the name has changed. By the time we print Benjamin’s should be up and running.

Benjamin’s menu will be focusing on Southern favorites, but will remain eclectic enough to keep its gastropub status. I perused the new menu and drooled the entire time. I can’t wait to try the country-fried steak with filet mignon. Head on down to Airport to the quaint building next to the former Antiques at the Loop. It’s by that green house that they painted white.

Fairhope Inn hosts Christopher Lynch Cooking Demonstration

It is consistently one of my favorite places to eat. Now we can combine that with a little lesson. The Fairhope Inn will be hosting a cooking demonstration with New Orleans’ Atchafalaya Restaurant Executive Chef de Cuisine Christopher Lynch.

Thursday, Sept. 12 the Church Street locale will have a champagne meet and greet with the chef at 6:30 p.m. with a demonstration at 7 p.m. The four-course dinner will follow. All of this for $75 per person.

For those unfamiliar with Chef Lynch, the Philadelphia transplant has quite the resume. Schooling at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y., stints in Washington, D.C., New York City, his hometown of Philly led him to our beloved New Orleans. Here he has worked for Gautreau’s, Restaurant August, and Emeril Lagasse’s flagship Emeril’s. Katrina sent him home, but he didn’t stay away for long. Now you will find him at the beautiful Atchafalaya Restaurant (www.atchafalayarestaurant.com).

Don’t miss the opportunity to learn from a star who is still rising. Call the Fairhope Inn at (251) 928-6226 and reserve your spot today.

Jesus on a grill cheese

I get product samples that either come to my desk or to my inbox all of the time, but I could not help but pass this one on to you. It’s a sandwich press. But it is no ordinary sandwich press. This one burns an image of Jesus into the bread. The best part is the name.

The Grilled Cheesus Sandwich Press ($39.95 retail) “lets you bring little grilled miracles to mealtime, snack time, or anytime!” Nothing could be more inspiring than the face of Christ on your gluten-loaded baked goods with processed cheese melted between each slice.

At first I thought it was a joke, but apparently it is real. As a matter of fact, the website claims to donate a portion of the proceeds to feed the hungry, and even has links to organizations with like-minded goals so you can donate directly.

See the product for yourself at www.grilledcheesus.com. Grab a “Rise with Jesus” coffee mug while you are there. And I thought I was cool with a Saints toaster that burns a fleur de lis on one side of the bread.

Recycle those crusts.