Eat, drink, and socialize for a great cause? Sign me up! Share Our Strength’s Annual Taste of the Nation DC for No Kid Hungry was last night, bringing together over 100 restaurants, bars, mixologists, sommeliers, & chefs!
The event was hosted by Food Network’s Melissa de’Arabian, and there were lots of other famous chefs present, including my favorite– Bryan Voltaggio!
I’m going to let the pictures do most of the talking here. Let’s dive right in.
Check this out– it’s from Lupo Verde. Looks like an ice cream cone, tastes like a sweet-savory flavor explosion in your mouth. A good explosion? Ohhh yes! It was an herb-dough cone filled with chocolate and 4 cheeses, dipped in spicy chocolate and covered with nuts. I heard there also may have been salmon in it…
..either way! I dub this the most unique bite of the night.
Vinoteca served up a warm tuna confit. Delish.
Another one of my top favorites of the night was Art and Soul’s pastrami cabbage and swiss egg roll. It was a savory, satisfying little bite!
Speaking of satisfying, Centrolina had cooked-to-order ricotta gnudi. What is gnudi? It’s kind of like gnocchi, but even better!! Doughy, warm, and cheesy. Mmmm cheese….
Mason Dixie had some tasty biscuits with two different toppings. Simply southern, I like it.
Pinea had a little scallop crudo– the perfect size. It was on a thin, soft biscuit, which I liked as opposed to a hard cracker. And, I love seafood.
The best display of the night has got to go to Macon. Look at that?? Colorful, full of variety, oh and delicious!
Brabo’s bison carpaccio. Try the bison! If you like meat, you’ll like it.
Let’s take a drink break…
Juniper served this shooter. Honestly, can’t even tell you what’s in it, but it was DELICIOUS! If I had wanted to drink more…I would have had another…but, back to the food.
District Commons’ Pork Cracklings with Pimento Cheese Dip. Say what!? Pimento Cheese dip! And pork cracklings. You heard it allllll right.
Del Campo’s Smoked Beef Tartare! Another item I don’t have often– beef tartare. Afraid of tartare? Don’t be, it’s full of flavor!
Dino Grotto’s Grilled Brussels! Feelin’ healthy with the veggies. Ya know, to balance out the meat & seafood 😀
Room 11 served house-brined duck pastrami. I don’t usually eat duck (as in, it’s not something I typically cook) so it was a nice treat to have here!
Speaking of duck..
The Hamilton served a smoked duck breast with strawberry salad, goat cheese, and meyer lemon. This was one of my top favorites of the night. The sweet of the strawberry was a surprising and wonderful accompaniment to the smoked duck.
El Centro’s crab guacamole. Two of my favorite foods, on a chip?? Perfection.
Speaking of perfection, let’s move on to desserts…
The Sweet Lobby had lots of macaroons and other confections. I might have tried all of them. It was TOTALLY worth it.
A DC classic– Georgetown Cupcakes. The peanut butter chocolate is my favorite.
Co Co Sala had a variety of chocolate creations. Again, had to try them all…
Sona’s goat cheese and lemon graham cracker crust mini pies. So creamy, I could have eaten 5 of these. But I stuck to one. Because I knew I wanted…
Cookies from Captain Cookie! Kirk and the Captain Cookie team make the BEST cookies. Here we have chocolate chip and snickerdoodle. Try eating them together…or visiting the food trucks/ store for a cookie ice cream sandwich…do it.
Rare sweets had AMAZING brownies and blondies, along with mini cakes. I loved all the mini items. SO CUTE!
Here’s a unique bite– Foie Gras Macaroons. Chyeah, that’s a real thing. And ya know what? DELICIOUS! I wonder how one would go about making these..
And more! There was so, so much more. And everything was outstanding. This just gives you a glimpse into how epic the event is!
Casual chef sighting– that’s Mandu’s Danny Lee (right) who just was dubbed winner of DC’s Cochon 555.
I’d also like to mention the DJ. She played the BEST mash-up of 90s hits. Totally knew her audience.
Whew, this is making me hungry!
This year’s event benefited Capital Area Food Bank, DC Hunger Solutions, and Mary’s Center. In sum, it’s a culinary event to end childhood hunger. Need I say more?
Did you miss it? Don’t worry, they’ll be back next year! Mark your calendar now 🙂