Food & dining

Toasting Jacques Pepin at 80

Tom Hopkins

Dozens of Boston’s chefs will serve samples of their specialties at Boston University on Nov. 2 for A Toast to Innovation. The celebratory gala honors the 80th birthday of French chef Jacques Pepin and also recognizes the Metropolitan College’s 50th anniversary. Pepin co-founded its culinary arts and gastronomy programs with Julia Child three decades ago. The author and TV chef is a part-time faculty member. While wine reps offer pours, chefs like Frank McClelland, Jasper White, Jamie Bissonnette, Daniel Bruce, Michael Leviton, and others will cook. Pepin recently was the first recipient of The Julia Child Award from The Julia Child Foundation of Gastronomy and the Culinary Arts, which comes with a $50,000 grant. The chef will split the money between BU’s Programs in Food & Wine and Wholesome Wave, a Connecticut-based nonprofit that offers affordable access to local produce. BU’s food and wine programs director Potter Palmer lauds Pepin. “He’s been an inspiration to countless students’ lives,” he says. A Toast to Innovation tickets cost $150 and include an autographed copy of “Jacques Pepin Heart & Soul in the Kitchen.” Metropolitan College, 808 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, ANN TRIEGER KURLAND