ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
The moniker of the Tivoli Theatre is "Jewel of the South" — the name of the Scenic City Supper Club hosted at the historic venue. / Photo by Jaime Smialek of Our Ampersand Photography

Photo Gallery

Tivoli dinner

It was a packed house at the Tivoli Theatre for the Scenic City Supper Club's "Jewel of the South" dinner earlier this month. Home to nearly a century of performances, from silent movies to Broadway shows, the Tivoli features Beaux Arts style chandeliers, a high dome ceiling and a grand lobby — a fitting setting for the grandeur of the pop-up dinner series.

Launched by local restaurateurs chef Erik and Amanda Niel in 2015, the club hosts quarterly dinners in locales around town, bringing in guest chefs to work alongside area culinary talent to create unique menus tailored to the season and the setting.

This event welcomed Bill Briand, executive chef of Fisher's and Playa and a three-time James Beard Award semifinalist for Best Chef: South. Leading the kitchen at his waterfront dining destinations in Orange Beach, Ala., he is known for creative riffs on Southern coastal cuisine and innovative dishes featuring local produce and just-caught Gulf seafood.

For this event, Briand was paired with Erik Niel, executive chef and owner of Easy Bistro & Bar and Main Street Meats; Kevin Korman, executive chef of White Bird; and Jacob D'Angelo, executive chef of Rolling J's Bistro.

Amid trailing greenery and elegant table settings from Terra Flower Farm, the sellout crowd of 150 guests were treated to hors d'ouevres and cocktails, followed by a four-course meal highlighting Briand's signature seafood which Easy Bistro bar manager Alex Howell expertly paired with brews from Hutton & Smith.

The Tivoli has seen a resurgence as of late, with an ever-growing list of events that have taken it beyond the classical music and dance performances for which it had become largely known. In 2015, management of the historic venue was handed from the city to the independent Tivoli Foundation, which contracts with music powerhouse AC Entertainment for booking.

In addition to expanding the lineup of events, the foundation has worked to make improvements to the building, originally built as a movie theater the 1920s. In 2017, Keith Sanford, president of the Tivoli Foundation, half joked that, given the conditions of the aging building, "we could make a profit every year for 150 years and not make a dime."

In light of that, a percentage of ticket proceeds from the Jewel of the South dinner will be donated to the Tivoli Foundation to help repair and preserve the venue, which is listed on the National Register of Historical Places.

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT