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Foodies Munch for Charity

May 1, 2001, 12:00 AM EDT

Share Our Strength's Taste of the Nation benefit tasting Grand Hyatt New York Wednesday, 04.25.01, 7:30 PM to 10 PM
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More than 900 of New York's fanatical foodies turned out for Share Our Strength's 14th annual Taste of the Nation benefit, a food and beverage tasting event that benefits area hunger and poverty charities. This year the event raised more than $300,000 for City Harvest, God's Love We Deliver, Just Food, Food for Survival, Community Food Resource Center and Americans for Community Co-operation in Other Nations (ACCION).

The Grand Hyatt's ballroom hosted this giant event, which had several beverage companies (such as Evian, Illy, Finlandia, Moet & Chandon and Bacardi) and more than 50 of New York's best restaurants dishing tasty servings of everything from .phpberry lambic floats to corn and seafood chowder, to lots of fresh, raw fish (perfectly suited to the current raw bar trend). Some of the participating restaurants included Gramercy Tavern, Zoe, Verbena, Five Points, Aquavit, Eleven Madison Park, Avenue, Blue Water Grill, Olives, Monkey Bar and Fiamma.

As guests arrived for the event, they had help navigating the hotel's labyrinthian mirrored hallways--an abundance of signage led them to the ballroom where the event was held. Inside, people ate, drank, and ate some more until 10 PM rolled around and the chefs started packing their wares.

But that wasn't the end of the night: An after-party for the chefs and V.I.P. sponsors organized by Yipeee exceeded its planned capacity of 100 by an extra 250 guests. The party offered music, dancing, more food and drinks courtesy of the Whole Foods market and RestaurantTrade, and back and hand massages by therapists from Equinox.

--Suzanne Ito

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