Local Chefs Help Deliver Healthy Babies
Fall is here and that means cooler temperatures, falling leaves, Oktoberfest and the March of Dime’s Signature Chefs Gala. Mark your calendar now for 6:30 p.m. on Nov. 12 when the DMV’s culinary masters come together for an elegant evening of wine, cocktails and dining.
More than 40 of the area’s celebrated chefs, mixologists, bartenders and vintners will serve up tasty bites and drinks. The evening will also include auctions with unique dining, entertainment, travel and leisure packages. All proceeds benefit the March of Dimes, raising awareness for its mission and vital revenue to help prevent birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality.
This is the third year executive chef Lonnie Zoeller of Vinoteca, 1940 11th St. NW, is participating in the Signature Chefs Gala.
With so many food-centric events happening in the DMV, Zoeller said choosing which of the many good causes Vinoteca supports. “It’s a matter of timing. It is hard to be involved with every one. We pick one or two really good causes every seasons – the ones that are more important to us,” Zoeller told DC on Heels. “My daughter just turned 2 so I like to support the March of Dimes in educating parents and soon-to-be parents” about preventing birth defects.
Zoeller hasn’t decided what he’ll be serving since the event is still a few months away and he prefers “ingredient-driven cuisine, using what’s in season and what’s available to me.” The first year he served a smoked fish and potato salad and last year a country ham and white bean stew.
The chef explained that he prefers buying whole or half animals to create his dishes at Vinoteca so he “knows where the product comes from. It comes from the farm to us without going through a processor or two. It also keeps cost down and we can pass it on to our customers.”
Zoeller said he likes to keep the dishes easy to serve so he can have conversations with the people at the gala, where about 500 guests walk around the ballroom of the The Ritz-Carlton in Foggy Bottom sampling the chefs’ dishes and mixologists’ drinks.
Other participating chefs include honorary chef Mike Isabella of G, Graffiato, Kapnos and Kapnos Taverna; chef Douglas Alexander of Art & Soul; chefs Christophe and Michelle Poteaux from Bastille; chef Erin Reed from Brabo; chef Geoff Tracy from Chef Geoff’s and Lia’s; chef Kyle Bailey of ChurchKey; chef Victor Albisu from Del Campo; chef Dean Gold of Dino’s Grotto; chef Sam Henderson from Food Wine & Co.; chef Spike Mendelsohn of Good Stuff Eatery, We the Pizza and Bearnaise; chef Jamie Leeds from Hank’s Oyster Bar; chef Michael Abt of Le Diplomate; chef Robert Wiedmaier from Marcels and Brasserie Beck; chef Matthew Adler of Osteria Morini; chef Kyoo Eom from Poste Moderne Brasserie; chef Travis Croxton of Rappahannock River Oysters; chef Javier Romero from Taberna Del Alabardero; chef Ethan McKee of Urbana; chef Adam Barnett from Westend Bistro; and chef Tracy O’Grady of Willow along with representatives of Oliva Macaron and Paul.
Participating bartenders and mixologists include Jo-Jo Valenzuela from D.C. Craft Bartenders Guild; Jamie MacBain of Bourbon Steak; Ben Wiley from Café St. Ex; Christine Kim of Tico; Paul Taylor from Rhodeside Grill; Aaron Joseph of Wit and Wisdom; Glendon Hartley from Cava Mezze and Rico Wisner of Graffiato.
Tickets and more information along with an updated list of chefs and mixologists are available here.