NEW YORK, April 21, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Wholesome Wave, the non-profit working to increase affordable access to local produce, raised more than $100,000 last evening, at the organization's first-ever Wholesome Wave Benefit. Founder of Wholesome Wave, three-time James Beard Award-winning Chef Michel Nischan honored his mentors, the late founder of Food & Wine, Michael Batterberry and the legendary Chef Jacques Pépin, for excellence in selfless culinary leadership in the spirit of making meaningful change. Additionally, Malique Harry, a young culinarian was presented the Jacques Pépin Mentorship Award.
More than 200 people attended the event at The Yale Club to support Wholesome Wave including Food Network star Tyler Florence, famed chocolatier, Jacques Torres, Chef and Restaurateur Seamus Mullen, and Chef Carmen Quagliata, all of whom prepared the meal with their protégées in honor of the night's theme of mentorship. In keeping with Wholesome Wave's mission, the menu highlighted local spring harvests, including pasture-raised meats by Fleishers Craft Butchery.
"It was completely humbling to see so many incredibly talented chefs come together in support of Wholesome Wave and in appreciation for Jacques Pépin" said Nischan. "Batterberry and Pépin, who both understood that food has more impact on human health, societal health, environmental health, community health, and economic health than any other single subject, have proven that the world could be made a far better place through the magic of food."
"Wine Geek" Steve Olson brought thirteen sommeliers from top restaurants, all of whom helped pair and pour specially selected wines. One notable wine that was poured with Michel Nischan's course was the newly release private label wine benefiting Wholesome Wave, a 2012 ONEHOPE Edna Valley Reserve Pinot Noir, with limited-edition label featuring a watercolor by Pépin himself. The wine is available to purchase here: http://www.wholesomewave.org/wine/
The evening's auction, hosted by Emcee Billy Harris, featured extraordinary experiences including a private dinner with Marcus Samuelsson and an exclusive experience with Wholesome Wave board member Tom Colicchio complete with dinner at Restaurant Wars on the "Top Chef" set. The auction raised a total of $50,250 for the charity.
All proceeds from last night's event will benefit Wholesome Wave's work nationwide, including nutrition incentive programs to match the value of SNAP (food stamps) spent at farmer's markets and partnerships with healthcare providers to write innovative prescriptions for fruits and vegetables for low-income families at risk of diet-related diseases. The money raised was enough to cover the cost of 48 tons of carrots which will supply one serving a day to 480,000 children.
To access photos from last night's Wholesome Wave Benefit, click here:
About Wholesome Wave:
Wholesome Wave is a nonprofit working to create a vibrant, just and sustainable food system. By making locally grown fruits and vegetables affordable and available, it inspires under-served consumers to make healthier food choices. Its innovative initiatives are improving health outcomes among low-income families, generating additional revenue for small and mid-sized farm businesses and bolstering local and regional economies in 40 states and counting. Wholesome Wave reaches more than 150,000 under-served consumers, as well as thousands of farmers annually. Wholesomewave.org. Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
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SOURCE Wholesome Wave