Dinner in an Italianate-style mansion? Yes, please! Liz Grandchamp and Sarah Shepherd serve up old-world hospitality in an event series at the boutique Boylan Avenue hotel.
By Catherine Currin
Heights House Hotel co-owner Sarah Shepherd and Grandchamp Hospitality founder Liz Grandchamp are joining forces to create an intimate dinner party once a month at Heights House Hotel.
The “Supper Club” is aptly named. At this dinner, long tables set with vintage dinnerware, where groups sit for a mix of family-style and plated Italian fare with wine and cocktails flowing. Grandchamp and Shepherd dreamed up a cozy yet elevated four-course dinner, with dishes like aromatic saffron seafood stew, a savory persimmon salad and fresh, handmade pasta.
Shepherd is looking forward to hosting these dinners, especially after more than three years renovating the historic Montfort Hall on Boylan Avenue. She says that once Heights House and its bar, The Parlor, was up and running, she started to focus on special events. “I thought The Parlor plus pasta would make a fun combo,” she says. “Who did I know that loves pasta? Liz!”
The duo met a few years back at one of Grandchamp’s sandwich popups, and got to know each other more at FAB in Charleston, a national conference for women in the hospitality industry. “We both have the same values in terms of what’s important,” says Shepherd. “Especially within our community.”
Grandchamp is thrilled to bring her cooking to Heights House, a space that is already bringing people together. She’s been in the industry for years, most recently working on her own restaurant consulting and catering business Grandchamp Hospitality (she’s worked most recently with Glasshouse Kitchen in Research Triangle Park). Her success boils down to her love for hosting and bringing people together. “Supper clubs are often in people’s homes,” she says. “This is the dressed-up version, but it’s still as accessible as being in someone’s house for dinner.” Grandchamp’s description of Supper Club feels similar in style and taste to the Feast of the Seven Fishes dinner we featured in WALTER last year.
For each Supper Club event, the community tables will be filled with vintage, eclectic china that Shepherd has collected for the space, along with Italian glassware that you’ll also find in The Parlor. The family-style seating is deliberate, meant to spark conversation, build relationships or create new friendships. “That’s what food is: community,” says Grandchamp. “Everyone can make friends over good food.” Wine pro Halsey Merritt has selected wine pairings with each dish, and there may be some surprise aperitifs in The Parlor from bar manager Will Bryant. It was extremely important to both Grandchamp and Shepherd that additional talent in the industry is highlighted in these dinners — a continuation of their emphasis on community. “Keep an eye out at Supper Club for friendly faces that you’ll recognize from around town in the industry,” Grandchamp says.
This article was originally published in February, 2023 on waltermagazine.com