This past Saturday (February 1, 2014) thousands of guests, celebrities, and chefs attended the 23rd annual Taste of the NFL “Party with a Purpose” in Brooklyn, NY. Net proceeds from the event will be donated to Feeding America-affiliated food banks in each of the 31 NFL cities with emphasis on the host city’s food bank(s). This year the host city’s food banks include Bed-Stuy Campaign Against Hunger, City Harvest, Food Bank for New York City, and Community Food Bank of New Jersey. To date, the Taste of the NFL non-profit (501c3) organization has donated more than $14 million. Their mission; addressing the needs of the hungry and homeless by raising awareness and money through what can only be described as an epic “foodie” bash. The premier Super Bowl party pairs renowned chefs from each NFL city with current, alumni and Hall of Fame football players. Attendees also had the opportunity to participate in a silent auction with sports memorabilia, travel opportunities, and culinary packages being some of the items up for auction.
Celebrities including Andrew Zimmern (Bizarre Foods) who served as a culinary host during the event, Adam Richman (Man vs. Food), Ted Allen (Chopped), Nina Davuluri (Miss America 2014), Carissa Rosario (Maxim), Jesse Jackson, Gayle King, Richard Kind, Cake Boss, and Common were in attendance to show their support and help raise awareness. The evenings entertainment concluded with a concert by the NFL All-Star Band. Premier sponsors of the event included E.&J. Gallo Winery (wine provider), American Family Insurance (entertainment presenter), Pernod Ricard (spirits provider), Delta (preferred airline), LowT Center (yacht host), and Taste NY. What’s better than celebrities, entertainment, and football paired with fantastic food prepared and presented by some of the best chefs in the USA on Super Bowl Eve? Nothing.
The attending chefs brought their A-games and prepared top notch fare to attendees. It was impossible to leave hungry with dishes that included Brown Sugar Cured Skuna Bay Salmon on a Sonoran Potato Pancake with Chiptole Cilantro Creme (Chef Eddie Matney/Arizona Cardinals), Szechuan Pepper Crusted Creekstone Strip Steak with Hawaiian Purple Sweet Potato and a Mushroom Soy Glaze (Chef Kent Rathbun/Dallas Cowboys), Paella de Pato with D’Artagnan Foie Gras, Winter Vegetables, Fig Sofrito and Duck Jus (Chef Seamus Mullen/James Beard House) and Lamb and Pork Sausage with Muhamarra Sauce, Chili Plum Jam, Lime Crema and a Peanut Butternut Relish (Chef Deb Paquette/Tennessee Titans) just to name a few.
Some favorites dishes from the evening were the Asian BBQ Pork with Cheddar Mashed Potatoes & Crispy Onions (Chef Sherry Schie/Pro Football Hall of Fame), “Tasting of the Hog” Porchetta, Sausage and Braised Pork Shoulder in Milk Sauce (Chef Jeffrey “JG” Gaetjen/Washington Redskins), and the Skuna Bay Salmon with Sticky Rice, Coconut Thai Curry Sauce, Zucchini-Carrot-Cilantro-Peanut Slaw (Chef John Howie/Seattle Seahawks).
|Eddie Matney (Eddie’s House – Arizona Cardinals)||Kevin Rathbun (Rathbun’s – Atlanta Falcons)|
|Nancy Longo (Pierpoint Restaurant – Baltimore Ravens)||Mike Andrzejewski (Seabar – Buffalo Bills)|
|Chef William Schutz III (Bonterra Dining and Wine Room – Carolina Panthers)||Carrie Nahabedian (Naha – Chicago Bears)|
|Jean-Robert De Cavel (Jean-Robert’s Table – Cincinnati Bengals)||Rocco Whalen (Fahrenheit Restaurant – Cleveland Browns)|
|Michael Coury (Delta)||Kent Rathbun (Abacus – Dallas Cowboys)|
|Troy Guard (TAG Restaurant – Denver Broncos)||Brian Polcyn (The Forest Grill – Detroit Lions)|
|Lynne Hackman (Franklin Street Bakery)||Justin Aprahamanian (Sanford Restaurant – Green Bay Packers)|
|Bruce Molzan (Corner Table – Houston Texans)||Greg Hardesty (Recess – Indianapolis Colts)|
|Brian Siebenschuh (Restaurant Orsay – Jacksonville Jaguars)||Seamus Mullen (James Beard House)|
|Debbie Gold (Red Door Grill – Kansas City Chiefs)||Adam Salyer (The Archives at Marriott Brooklyn Bridge)|
|Allen Susser (Chef Allen’s – Miami Dolphins)||Tim McKee (Le Belle Vie – Minnesota Vikings)|
|Marc Payero (Huddle Cafe – National Football League)||Steve DiFillippo (Davio’s – New England Patriots)|
|Tory McPhail (Commander’s Palace – New Orleans Saints)||Kamal Rose (Tribeca Grill – New York Giants)|
|Taku Sato (Nobu Fifty Seven – New York Jets)||Paul Arenstam (Summer Kitchen + Bake Shop – Oakland Raiders)|
|Jack McDavid (Jack’s Firehouse – Philadelphia Eagles)||Anthony Zallo (Bigelow Grille – Pittsburgh Steelers)|
|Sherry Schie (Shy Cellars – Pro Football Hall of Fame)||Jonathan Hale (The Prado at Balboa Park – San Diego Chargers)|
|David Lawrence (1300 on Fillmore – San Francisco 49ers)||John Howie (Seastar Restaurant and Raw Bar – Seattle Seahawks)|
|Gerard Craft (Niche Restaurant – St. Louis Rams)||Marty Blitz (Mise En Place – Tampa Buccaneers)|
|Deb Paquette (Etch – Tennessee Titans)||Peter Farrand (Shula’s Steak House – Undefeated 1972 Dolphins)|
|Jeffrey “JG” Gaetjen (Ancora – Washington Redskins)||Mark Haugen (Player Director)|
Taste of the NFL “Party with a Purpose” is an incredible event organized for an even more noble cause. For those who were not able to attend this year’s bash but wish to make a contribution, potential donors can participate through the Kick Hunger Challenge where 100% of donations are given to support food banks in your NFL community. Donating is easy and there are three ways to give. Select your favorite NFL team to donate on behalf of (and see how much each time has raised), join another team in your area, or create a fundraising team by building your own fundraising page. A donation as little as $10 is enough to provide 80 meals.
*All Photography by Rich H.
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