Blog: City Harvests A Mid-Winter Escape
For more than three decades, nonprofit organization City Harvest has been working tirelessly in dedicating their resources to feed New York’s hungry men, women, and children. In 2013 alone, the group’s efforts will result in the collection of more than 42 million pounds of food from different segments of the food industry, from the likes of local restaurants, grocers, corporate cafeterias, farms, and manufacturers. Tuesday evening, a smattering of City Harvest supporters would gather along the East River at the chic Apella event space for “A Mid-Winter Escape,” a fundraising effort led by their Leadership Council.
The stylish lounge space at Apella was ideal for an event of this caliber as guests schmoozed at one of three open bars and plucked some tasty eats from passed around trays all night long. The tremendous work that the folks at City Harvest have done has afforded them some goodwill among restaurants and as such, nine different haunts around Manhattan stepped up as participants for the “Escape,” to the mouthwatering delight of everyone fortunate to be in attendance. We’ve got the full rundown of delectable bites listed below but our favorite tastes of the event came from some familiar faces and places.
The bulbous “Pulled Pork Sliders” saturated with sweet, tangy barbecue sauce from Dinosaur Bar-B-Que were among the first things we got both hands on. Topped with a fresh pickle, the sandwich was (no surprise) tasty if not overly filling, stuffed with massive hunks of the salted swine. Equally as delicious was Gran Electrica’s “Carne Cocida en Limon,” a tartare like slab of cold raw beef atop a crunchy chip, with a zesty lemon finish. Admittedly, we may have returned to their table between three and five times for repeat visits. Delicatessen Chef Michael Ferraro’s “Chilled Avocado Soup” was perhaps the most distinctive of the Mexican inspired samples being doled out at the event. Served with chunks of fresh Peekytoe crab salad, the cold and creamy green soup was both delicious and refreshing at once.
With pours of red wine in hand and after having paced around the room to each of the restaurants’ tables, we headed straight for the back of the room directly in front of the erected makeshift stage. While City Harvest made sure their guests were well fed on this night, they also ensured a night of live music courtesy of the band Nine Days, who originally rose to prominence in 2000 with their smash hit “Absolutely (Story of a Girl).” Recognizing the importance of the evening, the band shied away from taking over the spotlight and instead provided a back drop for the philanthropic guests, still chomping away on a room filled with appetizing fare. The musicians interacted a bit with the crowd and capably ran through an abbreviated set of some newly written songs and some older tracks, closing out with the all too familiar tune that had us singing it aloud the entire way home.
In all, City Harvest’s Mexican theme for “A Mid-Winter Escape” was an expertly run affair. From some of the city’s most established restaurants to the live musical performance to a room full of energetic, fun young New Yorkers gathering together for such a worthy cause, the event offered literally something for everyone. But attending alone is simply not enough. If you were fortunate to be inside of Apella on Tuesday night, and even if you weren’t, check out City Harvest’s website to find out more about the great work being done, make a donation, or learn how you can get involved and make a difference in the lives of New York’s starving citizens.
- Jane Van Arsdale
Participating Restaurants and Their Dishes
Delicatessen, Chef Michael Ferraro- “Chilled Avocado Soup with Peekytoe Crab Salad”
Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, Chef John Stage- “Pulled Pork Sliders”
El Rey, Chef Dionicio Jimenez- “Chicken Quesadilla with Chicken Tinga”
Gran Electrica, Chef David Goody- “Carne Cocida en Limon”
Hill Country Chicken, Chef Elizabeth Karmel- “Breakfast Tacos with Chorizo & Salted Margarita Pie Cups”
La Palapa- “Guacamole de Aguacate Mexicano & Chalupas de Arrachera con Guacsalsa”
Momofuku Milk Bar, Chef Christina Tosi- “Dulce de Leche Cake Truffles”
Toloache, Chef Julian Medina- “Beer-Braised Pork, Chile Guajillo Sauce, Pinapple-Chile de Arbol Chutney”