The 8th annual Chefs for Equality took place Tuesday night at the Washington National Cathedral. The event started as an HRC benefit in the fight for full LGBT equality, and — as Chef José Andres enthusiastically reminded guests — in less than a decade is overfilling the impressive National Cathedral church where homosexual couples can now legally marry.
Over 150 of the best chefs in the region (and beyond) came together to feed DC foodies with tasting bites, at speed dining tables, and private dining tables. Inn at Little Washington Chef Patrick O’Connell‘s table alone earned $36,000 for the cause!
Other chefs in attendance included Amy Brandwein (Centrolina), Cindy Wolf (Charleston), Robert Wiedmaier (Marcel’s), Nobu Yamazaki (Sushi Taro), Alex Levin (Michael Schlow Restaurants), Virginia Willis (Virginia Willis Culinary Enterprises), Bill Smith (Crook’s Corner), Kelly Fields (Willa Jean), Jerome Grant (Sweet Home Cafe), Tressa Wiles (Great American Restaurant Group), Kaz Okochi (Kaz Sushi Bistro), Jorge Hernandez (Minibar by José Andrés) and so many more!
Among the highlights of the night, other than the food and drinks (and dessert in the overflow tent) of course, were the live and silent auctions. In what seemed to be a last minute surprise, José Andres not only auctioned the very chef’s jacket off his back, but also offered a one-night “food crawl” tour of his six DC-area restaurants for 8 people!
According to event co-Founder and host, food writer David Hagedorn, this year’s theme, ‘Stirred, not Shaken’ meant that “rather than be cowed by attacks on our most marginalized communities — including immigrants, the transgender and non-binary community, people of color and women — the chef community will fight even harder to protect and promote equality.”