Last night, ICE celebrated at Rockefeller Center at Citymeals-on-Wheels Silver Spoons benefit. The yearly event brings together many of the country’s most acclaimed chefs to celebrate the heritage and legacy of James Beard and food in America.
This year marked the 25th anniversary of the event. The event goes back to 1985 when twelve devotees of James Beard came together to celebrate his life and love of cooking, all while giving to Citymeals-on-Wheels. Beard co-founded Citymeals-on-Wheels with Gael Greene to feed homebound elderly New Yorkers. The original event was intended to celebrate Beard’s 82nd birthday. When he passed away a few weeks prior to the event, the event became a tribute to him.
The event has a long history of bringing together the country’s best chefs for one amazing evening. The original group of chefs included Wolfgang Puck, Larry Forgione, Alice Waters, Jonathan Waxman and Paul Prudhomme. Over the years, the event has included even more of the country’s best chefs. For the silver anniversary, the roster of chefs that reunited to celebrate Citymeals-on-Wheels and James Beard included Jody Adams, Paul Bartolotta, Daniel Boulud, Jean-François Bruel, Cesare Casella, Traci Des Jardins, Claudia Fleming, Larry Forgione, Nobu Matsuhisa, Michael Mina, Charlie Palmer, Christopher Lee, François Payard, Alfred Portale, Wolfgang Puck, Sherri Yard, Bill Telepan, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Jonathan Waxman and Michael White, among many others.
At last night’s event, over 1,000 guests walked and mingled through the famed Rockefeller Center garden and terraces, sampling exquisite cuisine, sipping wine and cocktails and dancing under the stars.
ICE students volunteered to work alongside these renowned chefs and help prepare the outstanding menu. To name just a few examples of the exceptional dishes, Wolfgang Puck stood under hanging Peking ducks, carving the succulent meat for his Bao Buns; Charlie Palmer offered up Slow-Cooked Lamb Loin with Couscous; Nobu Matshuhisa hand rolled pieces of Sushi; and Mark Peel served a Duck Confit Slider along side Bitter Almond Ice Cream with Sautéed Cherries in Red Wine Sauce. The evening was emceed by Top Chef judge (and ICE alum) Gail Simmons who honored the chefs alongside Citymeals-on-Wheels co-founder Gael Greene.
The heart of the celebration is Citymeals-on-Wheels. The event has raised more than $15 million for Citymeals-on-Wheels over the years. The organization offers meals and companionship to thousands of elderly New Yorkers. We are proud to support Citymeals-on-Wheels and be part of such a wonderful evening.