There seems to be another huge culinary event or festival every other week in South Florida. And we're definitely not complaining about that. Aside from our lovely weather -- in winter, anyway -- that's a huge part of what draws tourists to our fair region.
Our next big culinary extravaganza is going to be huge in more ways than one: not only does the event benefit Share Our Strength -- the country's leading anti-hunger organization -- but it's being hosted by the area's leading chefs. This year Lindsay Autry will be joining Zach Bell, Clay Conley, and Allen Susser as co-chairs of Taste of the Nation at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts.
Clean Plate Charlie caught up with Top Chef star and Sundy House Executive Chef Lindsay Autry to get details about the event and her involvement.
The walk around tasting will include dishes from about 40 restaurants, specialty cocktails, wines, live music, as well as live and silent auctions. Participating restaurants include highly rated spots like 3800 Ocean, Cafe Boulud, Casa D'Angelo, DaDa, Max's Harvest, Pistache French Bistro, and more.
Autry's first experience with Taste of the Nation took place two years ago but this is her first year as a co-chair.
"I got involved with Share Our Strength about four years ago when we opened Michelle Bernstein's at the Omphoy," said Autry. "We were part of a dinner at Cafe Boulud and I got the opportunity to really learn about the organization and what it stands for. I really believe in it."
Just after joining the Sundy House late last year, Autry participated in another Share Our Strength benefit at Buccan.
"When they asked me to be a co-chair, there was no way I could turn it down," she said.
As part of her co-chair duties, Autry has joined Bell, Conley, and Susser in encouraging restaurants to participate. In addition to representing their own restaurants all four co-chairs will be mingling with the VIP ticket holders at the after-party.
"A lot of it is about getting the word out," she said.
Autry, Bell, and Conley just flew up to Washington D.C. to attend the National Leadership Conference for Share Our Strength on Sunday.
Taste of the Nation Palm Beach takes place on Thursday, June 20 from 6:30 to 9 pm. General admission tickets are $90 per person. VIP tickets, which include early access, a private lounge with exclusive beverages, goody bag, and admission to the after-party are $150. 100 percent of the ticket sales benefit Share Our Strength's No Kid Hungry Campaign.
"It's going to be a great event," said Autry. "We're seeing more involvement with Palm Beach County restaurants than we ever had in the past. It's exciting to see that our community is growing."
The Kravis Center for the Performing Arts is Located at 701 Okeechobee Blvd. in West Palm Beach. Call 561-832-7469. Tickets to Taste of the Nation are available at tasteofthenation.org.
Follow Sara Ventiera on Twitter, @saraventiera.
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