Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Meals on Wheels Celebrity Chef Ball

There are three major benefits that bring out a multitude of chefs and fine dining institutions, the CF Grand Chefs Gala which happens in January, the Common Threads World Festival in March, and the Meals on Wheels Celebrity Chef Ball in October. I was able to go to the ball most recently and it was great. While there is a sit down dinner that starts this off, I just came for the tasting party. There were 69 chefs/restaurants represented and while I would have liked to have tried all of them, there was no way that that was going to happen. I actually wasn't even that systematic about my attack, bouncing here, there and every where. Even bouncing around, I did get to try a wide variety of stuff. I ended up trying 24 dishes and while I would have liked to take pictures of everything, I also wanted to eat. A favorite included the Scotch Egg by Dirk Flanigan of The Gage. A Scotch Egg is a hardboiled egg that's wrapped in sausage, breaded and fried. It was served with dijon mustard and it was awesome. The first thing that I actually tried was a lamb sausage served with mint and cilantro sauce by Radhika Desai of Top Chef fame, formerly of Between and English. It was a good start and led me to the Fried Chicken and Waffles served by Michelle Garcia of Bleeding Heart Bakery and the chorizo stuffed chicken wing by Michael McDonald of one sixtyblue. Wandering around brought me to Jeffrey Hedin of Leopold who was serving a Rabbit Rillette on Pumpernickel with a Horseradish Pickle. This was very nice and surprisingly, the horseradish didn't take my head off.

I could continue to list all of the things that I tried but that would make for a long post without much more than my saying that it was really good and I liked it. Of the savory courses, I do have to mention the Ginger-Shrimp Sausage roasted in a Spiced Mini Pumpkin made by Allen Sternweiler of Butcher & the Burger and the Indiana Duck Ropa Vieja, Vanilla-Pear Jam, and Mallorcan Toast by Randy Zweiban of Province.

I couldn't end without talking about dessert. I had Peanut Butter Pie in an Oreo-Pretzel Crumb Crust with Bacon Peanut Brittle by Hedy Goldsmith of Michael's Genuine Food & Drink, a Devil's Food Cupcake with Minted Buttercream by Melissa Trimmer of C-House, and both Pear Parfait with Acorn Brioche Croutons and Chocolate Salted Caramels by Patrick Fahy of Cafe des Architectes.

It was an excellent dinner and I left very stuffed. I can hardly wait until next year.

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