Enjoy a much beloved dish from the French countryside during Holly Hill Inn’s fifth-annual Classic Cassoulet dinner in Midway, Ky., on Sunday, Nov. 11.

If you’ve ever had the rustic meat and bean dish done well, you know it’s a special treat, the perfect fall meal. And if you’ve ever had it at Holly Hill Inn, you know what a good time it is as the restaurant fills to capacity for the event. (Hint: Get your reservations quickly. It fills up fast.)

Chef Ouita Michel’s version of cassoulet is as traditional as possible, using white beans, confit of goose, fresh-cured local pork, local lamb and garlic sausage. Guest chef and former Holly Hill Inn sous chef Clay McClure of Lexington will again assist in preparing the dinner—a meal requiring more than two weeks of preparation.

To say McClure knows what she’s doing is an understatement. For those of you who remember the brilliant La Maisonette in Cincinnati, the only Mobile five-star rated restaurant near Louisville (the next closest is Tony’s in St. Louis), McClure apprenticed there under French master chef Jean-Robert de Cavel. Each year, she signs on for the cassoulet stint. Cool lady whom you’ll have a chance to meet if you go to the dinner.

McClure also is manager of the Kentucky Room at the Lexington Public Library and a volunteer printmaker at the King Library Press. All proceeds from the meal will benefit King Library Press.

Classically, a cassoulet meal begins with oysters on the half shell and a glass of bubbly, which will be offered a la carte as an option for those wanting the full experience. Here’s the full menu:

  • Capriole Goat Cheese Bites in Pastry
  • Local Lettuces Salad with Champagne Vinaigrette
  • Cassoulet or Vegetarian Cassoulet
  • Apple Galette

Holly Hill co-owner and sommelier, Chris Michel, and Wine Guildmaster Steve Mancuso will be offering French wines from the Languedoc Region by the glass and bottle. Aspecial wine flight will be available. (Insider tip: Spend the money and get the oysters, the bubbly and the wine flight. If you’re going to drive that far for this dinner, make the most of it. It’s worth it.)

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and dinner begins at 7 p.m. Cost is $45, plus beverage, tax and gratuity. Reservations required for this event; please call (859) 846-4732.

Never been to Holly Hill Inn? Go to its website for good directions. It’s about an hour from Louisville.