At Serious Eats, we're all about food. And even when we're not reading or writing about it, we're perhaps thinking, idealizing, and dreaming about it. But we're also cognizant of the millions of New Yorkers who don't have ready access to food, which is why we're down with City Harvest, an organization that for over 25 years, has helped to feed New York City's hungry.
They continually work to collect excess food from various channels (restaurants, grocers, farms, etc) and distribute them free of charge to nearly 600 community food programs throughout the New York boroughs. And in order to fund this massive effort (they estimate they'll rescue 30 million lbs of food this year), they've partnered with some of the city's best restaurants to throw their annual Bid Against Hunger gala, which was held yesterday evening at the Metropolitan Pavilion.
Fans of The Food Network or Bravo TV's Top Chef could develop whiplash at this event with all of the celebrity-chef sightings. Is that Le Bernardin's Eric Ripert chumming it up with Laurent Manrique, the Chef of Millesime? And would you care to have your photo taken with Scarpetta's Scott Conant or perhaps with the great Daniel Boulud? I would be remiss not to mention the hard-working brigade behind each Chef, every single sous, commis and stage executing for the surging and demanding crowd.
If star-gazing isn't your thing, there are plenty of cool auction items to be had, with all of the proceeds going to charity. If you have enough money to burn, you could win a private dinner for 10, personally cooked for you by A Voce's Missy Robbins, or perhaps you could score a 4-top at the infamously hard-to-book restaurant, Rao's. But of course the food is the star of the show here, and here are 16 bites that I loved at this year's event. But as you go through and enjoy the photos, don't lose sight of the reality that there's no one who appreciates food more than someone who doesn't have enough.