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James Beard Foundation to Host 2017 JBF Gala: A Night of Award Winners

James Beard Foundation to Host 2017 JBF Gala: A Night of Award Winners

It is that special time of the year again. The James Beard Foundation has announced the details of its 2017 fall gala fundraiser JBF Gala: A Night of Award Winners. The special evening on November 10 will take place at the iconic Rainbow Room.

The 2017 fall gala fundraiser will feature a once-in-a-lifetime collaborative dinner by a distinguished lineup of James Beard Award–winning chefs and beverage professionals to celebrate Susan Ungaro for her extraordinary leadership as the Foundation’s president since 2006. The black-tie event will take place on Friday, November 10 at the iconic Rainbow Room in New York City, and will include a multi-course dinner with fine wine pairings; a live auction of priceless culinary experiences; dessert reception with live music; and more.

The 2017 JBF Gala honorary chairs are Ted Allen and Carla Hall.

“Susan’s vast accomplishments such as spearheading impact initiatives, increased scholarship funding and creative awards programing, will allow the Foundation to be the leading force for good in the culinary industry,” said Fred Seegal, chair of the JBF Board of Trustees. “Under her leadership the Foundation has become a global brand and an indispensable organization for chefs and other culinary leaders around the world. This will be a magical and moving evening as we fete Susan on her remaining tenure as president.

The illustrious chef lineup will include:

  • JBF Award Winner Lidia Bastianichand Fortunato Nicotra, Felidia, NYC
  • JBF Award Winner Barbara Lynch, Barbara Lynch Gruppo, Boston
  • JBF Award Winner, Jonathon Sawyer, The Greenhouse Tavern, Cleveland
  • JBF Award Winner Michael Solomonov, Zahav, Philadelphia
  • JBF Award–Winning Pastry Chef Ghaya Oliveira, Daniel, NYC
  • Host Chef Mathew Woolf, Rainbow Room, NYC
  • JBF Award–Winning Sommelier Larry Stone, Lingua Franca, Willamette Valley, OR
  • Bar Director William Elliott, Maison Premiere, Brooklyn, NY

The 2017 JBF Fall Gala menu will include:

Chef Mathew Woolf, Rainbow Room, NYC

  • Mushroom Crackers > Tapioca Crackers with Pickled Mushrooms and Mushroom Aïoli
  • Crispy Oysters with Pickled Vegetable Salad and Yuzu
  • Grassfed Beef Wellington Bites with Mushroom Duxelles and Béarnaise Sauce
  • Scotch Quail Eggs with Smoked Curry Oil
  • Fennel–Parmesan Biscuits with Fennel Pollen, Cream Cheese, and Candied Orange
  • Crispy Chicken with Shrimp, Soy, Sesame, and Scallions

Jonathon Sawyer, The Greenhouse Tavern, Cleveland

  • Scallop Terrarium > Chilled Scallop Crudo with Smoked Scallop Roe, Braised Tripe Mousseline, Foraged Ohio Black Trumpet Mushrooms, Pine Mugulio, and Ohio Sumac

Lidia Bastianich and Fortunato Nicotra, Felidia, NYC

  • Cacio e Pepe

Barbara Lynch, Barbara Lynch Gruppo, Boston

  • Roasted Duck Breast with Parsnip Purée, Spiced Prunes, and Chestnuts

Michael Solomonov, Zahav, Philadelphia

  • Zahav Lamb Shoulder with Pomegranate and Chickpeas over Persian Rice

Dessert Reception by:

Pastry Chef Ghaya Oliveira, Daniel, NYC

Host Chef Mathew Woolf, Rainbow Room, NYC

The 2017 JBF Gala event chairs Henni and John Kessler; and Robin and Fred Seegal, and vice chairs Ellen Hanson and Richard Perlman will be heading up a special VIP experience that includes an exclusive kitchen tour, tasting, and photo opportunity with the evening’s chefs. Silent and live auction packages will support the James Beard Foundation’s mission and programs to celebrate, nurture, and honor chefs and other leaders making America’s food culture more delicious, diverse, and sustainable for everyone.

The 2017 JBF Gala sponsors include Gourmet Settings, La Colombe® and Saratoga Spring Water*. The 2017 JBF Gala supporter is Chefwear.

For more information about the JBF Gala: A Night of Award Winners, visit Tickets to the event are priced at $750 for JBF members/$1,000 for the general public and can be reserved by calling 212-627-2308. For table purchases, please contact Michelle Santoro at or 212-627-111x 552.


ElizaBeth Taylor is a journalist for Times Square Chronicles and is a frequent guest at film, fashion and art events throughout New York City and Los Angeles due to her stature as The Sensible Socialite.Passionate about people ElizaBeth spent many years working as a travel reporter and television producer after graduating with high honors from University of Southern California. The work has afforded her the opportunity to explore Europe, Russia, South America, Asia, Australia and the Middle East. It has greatly influenced the way in which ElizaBeth sees a story and has created a heightened awareness for the way people around the world live today.

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