More than 50 top chefs from the Atlanta area will participate in Share Our Strength's Taste of the Nation® Atlanta on Wednesday, May 12, 2010 at the Georgia Aquarium. 11Alive's Sports Anchor Fred Kalil will serve as the evening's emcee. Celebrating its 22nd anniversary, Taste of the Nation is applauded as the first-ever culinary benefit in the nation and a model for successful fundraisers throughout the country. One of many Taste of the Nation events held across the nation, the Atlanta event has raised more than $6 million since its inception and furthers Share Our Strength's dedication to ending childhood hunger in America. 11Alive is proud to support this strong community effort to end childhood hunger.
This gourmet food and wine event will feature specialty food samplings, live, silent and beverage auctions, wine tastings and live entertainment. The participating chefs and restaurants include:
· Chef Jamie Adams from Veni Vidi Vici
· Chef Gregg Brickman from Wolfgang Puck Catering at the Georgia Aquarium
· Chef Olivier De Busschere of Nikolai's Roof
· Chef Ryan Delesandro from Nava
· Chef Gary Donlick from Bistro Niko
· Chef Adam Evans from Craftbar
· Chef Ron Eyester from Rosebud
· Chef Scott Gambone from The Ritz-Carlton, Reynolds Plantation
· Chef Daryl Gassmann from Chops Lobster Bar
· Chef Kevin Gillespie of Woodfire Grill
· Chef Carvel Grant Gould from Canoe
· Chef Ford Fry from JCT Kitchen
· Chef Tom Harvey from Murphy's
· Chef Bennett Hollberg from Atlanta Grill at The Ritz-Carlton, Atlanta
· Chef Cyrille Holota of Joël
· Chef Robert Holley from Atlanta Fish Market
· Chef Pano I. Karatassos from Kyma
· Chef Gerry Klaskala from Aria
· Chef Rogerio Martins from Sia's
· Chef Kevin Maxey of Craft Atlanta
· Chef Nick Melvin of PARISH
· Chef Christian Messier from Sun Dial Restaurant, Bar & View
· Chef John Metz from Marlow's Tavern
· Chef Jean-Luc Mongodin from BLT Steak Atlanta
· Chef Keira Moritz from Pacci Risorante
· Chef DeeDee Niyomkul from Nan Thai Fine Dining, Tamarind Seed Bistro and Tuk Tuk Thai Food Loft
· Chef Piero Premoli from Pricci
· Chef Kevin Rathbun from Rathbun's, Kevin Rathbun Steak and Krog Bar
· Chef Chris Raucci from Ted's Montana Grill
· Chef Stephen Sharp from French American Brasserie
· Chef Joey Riley from Buckhead Diner
· Chef Derek Rosen from 103 West
· Chef Kien Sam from Aqua Blue
· Chef Scott Serpas of Serpas
· Chef Cameron Thompson from TWO urban licks
· Chef Bill Toro from Alluvia at the Cheetah
· Chef Shane Touhy from Dogwood
· Chef Doug Turbush from Bluepointe
· Chef Drew Van Leuvan of ONE. midtown kitchen
· Chef Hilary White from The Hil
· Chef Micah Willix of Ecco
· Chef Ian Winslade of Market and Spice Market
Pano Karatassos, founder of the Buckhead Life Restaurant Group, started Atlanta's Taste of the Nation event in 1988 and has chaired the event each year since. He will also be joined this year by George McKerrow, President/CEO of Ted's Montana Grill. Dean Fearing, chef/partner Fearing's at the Ritz-Carlton in Dallas, will serve as National Honorary Chef. Fearing's Restaurant was named "Restaurant of the Year" and "Table of the Year" by Esquire Magazine in 2007 and was named No. 1 in "Hotel Dining in the U.S." by Zagat in 2009. Actress and fitness icon Jane Fonda will serve as honorary chairperson.
"Because we may not see it every day, we sometimes forget that many people here in both Atlanta and Georgia suffer from hunger every day. Taste of the Nation raises money that will help make a difference in many lives and impact our local community," said Jane Fonda.
In addition to sampling elegant food and wine, guests also will enjoy live entertainment. A live auction will feature a variety of items, including chef dinners, travel packages and other unique experiences. An extensive silent auction will feature unique wines, spa packages and other luxurious items.
Hunger is widespread in Georgia, with 19.7 percent of Georgians living in poverty. In Fulton County alone, the poverty rate rose to 25 percent. The net proceeds from Taste of the Nation Atlanta will help fund the development and implementation of Share Our Strength's® strategy to end childhood hunger along with the continued support of organizations such as the Atlanta Community Food Bank, Genesis, A New Life and Share Our Strength's Operation Frontline Georgia, a nutrition education program that helps teach low-income families how to make healthy, nutritious meals on a budget.
"Having the opportunity to help end childhood hunger, especially for children and working families in our community is a responsibility and an honor," said Karatassos. "The Atlanta community has shown tremendous support for the cause. I credit our generous sponsors, chefs and event guests with helping us set fund raising records during an extremely fun and powerful night."
"An end to childhood hunger in the United States is within reach," said Bill Shore, Founder and Executive Director of Share Our Strength. "With all the participants in Taste of the Nation Atlanta sharing their strengths, we are creating more resources for the greater good of Atlanta and our great nation."