Northampton’s Fourth Annual Jazz Festival Features the 12 Mile Meal Chef Battle on Sept. 6

Competing restaurants include Viva Fresh Pasta, Sierra Grille, Galaxy

NORTHAMPTON - The Sierra Grille will defend its title against challengers Galaxy and Viva Fresh Pasta to determine which restaurant can impress a panel of blue-ribbon judges and build the best 12 Mile Meal: an appetizer, entree and dessert made with ingredients sourced from farms within a twelve-mile radius of The Chef Tent at the Northampton Jazz Festival.

The event, hosted by Rick Gifford, will take place behind Thornes Marketplace in downtown Northampton on Saturday, Sept. 6 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. as part of the Northampton Jazz Festival.

Thirty-six VIP Diner Donor seats are available for those who want to dine at one of the three tables seating a dozen Diner Donors who have given a suggested donation of $100.

Those interested in joining the fun should contact each restaurant directly for tickets to enjoy the cuisine, taste wines from local vintners Black Birch Vineyard, Mineral Hills and Amherst Farms Winery and listen to world-class jazz.

The Sierra Grille is a full-service American fare restaurant in Northampton whose chefs, Jackson Smith and O’Brian Tomalin, won the 2013 12 Mile Meal Cup. It is a destination for those who want to build their own plates from a menu that allows diners to select proteins, sauces and sides. They feature wine and beer selections and host live music scenes.

Galaxy is a new restaurant and lounge in Easthampton owned by Chef Casey Douglass, who also owns Apollo Grill. Galaxy is a full-service American fare restaurant and lounge that reflects day and night with a bright white and colorful dining room and a darker but cozy lounge where you can enjoy a cocktail and the tapas-inspired small plates or full entrees.

Viva Fresh Pasta is a well-known, art-driven, full-service restaurant in Northampton. Chef Xavier Jones has teamed up with Co-owners Christine Buchholz and Paul Milani to bring southern European-style cuisine and a varied wine list to diners sitting under beautiful paintings and prints.

The 2014 Northampton Jazz Festival begins Tuesday, Sept. 2 with various events held throughout the week, leading up to the Saturday, Sept. 6 main festival event from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. in downtown Northampton on Hampton Street.

At Saturday’s signature Northampton Jazz Festival event, which is free and open to the public, featured performers will include: Etienne Charles & Creole Soul, the Seamus Blake Band, the Champian Fulton Quartet, the Steve Davis Quintet, the Hendrik Meurkens and Scott Mullet with the Green Street Trio, Miro Sprague Quintet and FlavaEvolution.

More information on all of the events of the Northampton Jazz Festival is available at

Major sponsors include: Baystate Health, McLadden’s Irish Publick House, North Coast Brewing Co., TD Bank, Clarion Hotel and Conference Center, Freedom Credit Union, 90+ Cellars, Florence Savings Bank, The Fine Arts Center at the University of Massachusetts, MassLive, Davis Financial Group, The Daily Hampshire Gazette, The Northampton Business Improvement District, Northampton Arts Council, Provisions for Pantry and Cellar, R. Michelson Galleries, Alternative Recycling, Commercial Distributing, WRSI (93.9 – The River), Thornes Marketplace, New England Public Radio, Downtown Sounds, A.P.E. Ltd. Gallery, Log Cabin, Klondike Sound, Falcetti Music, and ABBA Motors.