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Chef Jen Carroll tests-drives her menu

The "Top Chef" contender and 10 Arts alumna is cooking a private dinner tonight.

Jennifer Carroll, the Somerton-raised finalist on Bravo's Top Chef, has been making noise about opening her own restaurant in her hometown since she left her previous job last summer.

She has settled on a name: Concrete Blonde.

But she has no location yet. She and a potential investor were briefly linked to a spot less than a block from her former kitchen, 10 Arts by Eric Ripert at the Ritz-Carlton.

The evening of Monday, April 23 will find her behind the stove at Meme restaurant at 22d and Spruce Streets.

David Katz's bistro is normally closed Monday nights, but a bunch of food types have been invited to an exclusive pop-up restaurant featuring Carroll and her food.

She has been working of late with Aaron Gottesman, a onetime sous chef with her at 10 Arts.


Fried Old Salt oyster, harissa, mint yogurt

Lightly seared yellowfin tuna, radish cilantro, passion fruit vinaigrette

Black bass, spring vegetable ragout, potato espuma, carrot buerre monte

Border Springs lamb, asparagus, pearl onions, sweet 100 tomato, mustard seeds

Chocolate peanut butter ice cream sandwich, mint ice cream, marshmallow fluff

Petit fours

The invitation - which includes the above photo of Carroll with the caption, "it's serious. so is she" - reads: "The dinner will be filmed for an upcoming television series. All guests will be asked to sign releases."