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Press Release: Saratoga Performing Arts Center’s CulinaryArts@SPAC Presents A Southern Opus: Hattie’s featuring Executive Chef Mark Graham

April 4, 2023

Saratoga Performing Arts Center’s

CulinaryArts@SPAC Presents

A Southern Opus: Hattie’s featuring Executive Chef Mark Graham

Friday, May 12 at 6 p.m. at The Pines@SPAC

Saratoga Springs, NY (April 4, 2023) – Saratoga Performing Arts Center announces A Southern Opus: Hattie’s featuring Executive Chef Mark Graham, a CulinaryArts@SPAC event taking place at The Pines@SPAC on Friday, May 12 at 6 p.m.

“Our Culinary Arts initiative was born to celebrate the culinary talent in our region.  And we are delighted to now include the immense creativity and perspective of Chef Mark Graham,” says Elizabeth Sobol, President & CEO of Saratoga Performing Arts Center.

Executive Chef Mark Graham has been cooking for 39 years and has become a fixture in the Capital Region food scene, recently joining Business For Good (BFG) as the Executive Chef for Hattie’s Albany. Chef Graham started his culinary development in the greater Boston area and the Berkshire Mountains of Lenox, MA. He sought to refine his craft and moved to Northern California (Napa Valley, San Francisco & Palo Alto) in 1995. While there, he worked for industry giants like Chef Bradley Ogden (Lark Creek Café), Chef Gary Danko (Viognier) and Chef Wolfgang Puck (Spago). Returning to the east coast in 2000, Graham applied his passion and skill in Saratoga Springs (The Wine Bar, The Lodge and Chez Sophie) and Albany (Mezzanotte Ristorante and Taste). From 2019 to 2021, Graham was the Chef de Cuisine for Salt & Char at the Adelphi Hotel in Saratoga Springs.

The soulful and sophisticated New Orleans-inspired menu for the May 12 CulinaryArts@SPAC event will include:

  • Hors D Oeuvre’s: Mini Biscuits, Bacon Jam or Leek and Tomato Jam with double cream cheese
  • Appetizer: Mushroom Gumbo with sweet onions, baby bell peppers, celery baton, chicken broth and blonde roux garnished with crispy okra & cajun kale chips
  • Entrée: Boudin Stuffed Quail with organic grits, sweet corn & butter beans or Grilled Red Fish with rock shrimp succotash, red eye gravy or Brassica with beans and grits
  • Dessert: Sweet Potato Tart with Pecan Crumble

Drinks will include wine and beer along with the News Orleans born cocktail, The Sazerac.

As part of the Business for Good family of companies, Hattie’s Restaurants aim to grow and amplify a community positive business, while maintaining the quality and character of its product, the vision of its present ownership, and the legacy of its founder, Miss Hattie Moseley Austin. All profits of the Hattie’s Restaurants are donated to local charity, aligning with the Business for Good mission of giving back to move forward.

“Great culinary experiences are often about bringing flavors and seasoning to a new audience. I’m looking to forward to sharing a taste of New Orleans with Saratoga,” said Chef Graham.

Business for Good’s Chief Brand Officer, Connie Frances Avila, added, “Chef Graham’s passion for cuisine is sure to make this an exceptional brand experience that will give attendees a preview of what to expect from the upcoming Hattie’s location in downtown Albany. We are honored to continue our partnership initiatives with SPAC to bring community and culture together.”

Beyond its amphitheater stage, SPAC has become a year-round gathering place celebrating the artistry of food in building community while empowering individuals to understand how what we eat influences our communities and our planet. The CulinaryArts@SPAC initiative, founded in 2020, combines culinary excellence and education with exquisite food that emphasizes socially conscious cultivation and consumption, local procurement, and fair wages.

A Southern Opus: Hattie’s featuring Chef Mark Graham​ is produced by Kim Klopstock of Lily and the Rose and Pam Abrams, with Tiina Loite. Additional support is provided by Four Seasons Natural Foods.

Tickets cost $100 per person. Visit for details.

This event is made possible in part by the generous support of Business for Good.


About Saratoga Performing Arts Center

The Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC), located in the historic resort town of Saratoga Springs in upstate New York, is one of America’s most prestigious summer festivals. Its tranquil setting in a 2,400-acre park preserve surrounded by hiking trails, geysers, and natural mineral springs draws vacation crowds and arts connoisseurs each year for immersive experiences of performances by resident companies New York City Ballet, The Philadelphia Orchestra, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, the Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival, and concerts by Live Nation. SPAC embraces an ever-expanding definition of the Arts, including not only performing arts, but also visual arts, literary arts, culinary arts, healing arts and beyond, featuring guest artists and speakers within a year-round calendar of programming.

SPAC is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Donations and proceeds from fundraising events benefit the Center’s children’s education programs and support the vibrancy of its classical season. For more information visit


About Business for Good™

With values rooted in equity, access, opportunity, and prosperity, Business for Good has advanced the model of traditional venture philanthropy to Do Good and Give Back to communities in the Greater Capital Region of Albany. Formed in 2020, BFG seeks to give back to move forward and is rooted in the core principle of “for good, not gain.” Its efforts were recognized on a national level with a 2022 Fast Company’s World Changing Ideas Honorable Mention, which recognizes pioneering teams that are playing an important role in the betterment of the world through intentional philanthropy. Comprised of a mission-focused team, Business for Good™ believes no challenge is insurmountable through hard and thoughtful work. With a goal to provide businesses and organizations with sustained support, BFG invests in people for the long term and in every way. Business for Good: building better businesses, stronger communities, and a more equitable world. To learn more, visit

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