When Washington Post food writer David Hagedorn is doing the asking, big name chefs and restaurateurs respond. Though we didn’t see her there, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who married David and his partner, Michael Widomski, last fall, are on his speed dial.
The noted cookbook author chaired the Human Rights Campaign LGBT “Chefs For Equality” evening of food and fun Tuesday night at the Ritz-Carlton West End in one of the most delicious events of the season. Two hundred chefs and their crews, plus some of the city’s top mixologists (if you hate that moniker, move along) prepared tastings for the guests who were dazzled by splashy drag queens, assorted pols and a ballroom filled with damned good looking men and their gal pals.
Some of the most scrumptious bites came courtesy of Todd Gray and Chris Edwards of Salamander Resort & Spa (the concord grape jelly made from a neighbor’s vines was to die for); Michelle and Christophe Poteauxof Bastille whose foie gras mousse was topped with pear confit and toasted hazelnuts; Tim Ma of Water & Walland Maple Avenue who served an Asian Chicken Soup; and Brian Noyes of Red Truck Bakery whose Chocolate Moonshine Cake (a Mason jar filled with the local firewater from Belmont Distillery) was a mouthful of pillowy, boozy chocolate cake.
We also noshed on nibbles and sips from K. N. Vinod of Indique Heights, Mitch Berliner of MeatCrafters,Jamie Leeds of Hank’s Oyster Bar, Gina Chersevani of Buffalo & Bergen, Aaron McCloud of Cedar, Ris Lacoste of RIS, Tarver King of The Restaurant at Patowmack Farm, Jeff Faile of Neighborhood Restaurant Group, and David Guas of Bayou Bakery whose “American Grilled” show is on the Travel Channel.
Salt & Sundry provided swag bags for the VIPs who sat together at tables lavishly decorated by their individual hosts. Their specialty dinners were prepared by uber-chefs Robert Wiedmaier (Marcel’s), Michel Richard (Central Michel Richard), Patrick O’Connell (The Inn at Little Washington), Frank Ruta (now baking with Mark Furstenberg at Bread Furst), Peter Chang (soon to open in Bethesda), Tony Conte (The Oval Room),Scott Drewno (The Source), Jeremiah Langhorne (formerly of McCrady’s soon to open a DC outpost), and Fabio Trabocchi (Fiola and Casa Luca).
But it was all one big happy family there to celebrate this year’s Gay Rights successes and to push for Marriage Equality in Virginia.
Star power came courtesy of Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe who wooed the joyful crowd with his promise of support for gay marriage in the “Virginia is for Lovers” state.