The last culinary event I attended before the pandemic shutdown was the Table for Ten fundraiser in March of 2020. It was a spectacular evening of decadent cuisine, incredible wines, and an impressive silent auction, with funds raised going to charity.
Nobody suspected that a week later everything would shut down due to Covid-19.
Fortunately, things are looking better in the restaurant world, and Table for Ten has managed to survive intact.
The 2021 edition of Table for Ten – the 15th annual culinary soiree – was held on August 29 at the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana. More than 300 food and wine lovers enjoyed multi-course feasts prepared tableside by dozens of noted restaurants and chefs, including many from Newport Beach. Each restaurant provided unique table décor that reflected the restaurant’s unique ambiance and theme.
Prior to the main event, a silent auction was held in a reception area, where chefs and wineries offering delicious hors d’oeuvres and premium wines.
Among the auction items: a 60-bottle wine tree valued at $3,154, donated by Mona Lee Nesseth. A delighted Sylvia Burnett of Newport Beach won that prize. And I was lucky to be the high bidder on a pair if wine items, including two bottles of Babcock wine (one of the central coast faves).
The sold-out event featured dinner in the enchanting Bowers Museum courtyard, where restaurants pampered their guests with exquisite wines and impressive cuisine.
The deserving nonprofit that benefited from the Table for Ten event, Make-A-Wish Orange County and the Inland Empire, was represented by its President and CEO Gloria Jetter Crockett and Make-A-Wish America CEO Richard K. Davis. Davis was proud to say that since its founding in 1980, Make-A-Wish has granted 500,000 wishes.
Crockett and Davis presented Chef Jessica Roy, who worked with legendary Chef Pascal Olhats at his Café Jardin at Sherman Gardens in Corona del Mar before taking over the restaurant when Chef Olhats retired. She renamed it Cultivar, and was thrilled to be named Honorary Chef at the event.
Table for Ten netted more than $400,000 for the cause, making it possible for 22 children to have their wishes granted in our community. The generous support Make-A-Wish Orange County and the Inland Empire received from attendees, chefs and restaurants showed a generous heart in addressing the needs of children in crisis.
Table for Ten 2022 is scheduled for its normal time slot of March 2020, location to be determined.
Participating Newport Beach and Laguna Beach chefs and restaurants:
Jessica Roy, Cultivar at Sherman Gardens; Pascal Olhats, Jacob Davis, Balboa Bay Club; Victor Soto and Daniele Cambria, Cannery Seafood of the Pacific; David Serus and Ben Martinek, Montage Laguna Beach; Andy Huyne and Tetsuya Isogami, Nobu Newport Beach; Kyung Carroll and Zack Kasmara of Pelican Hill Resort; Kyle St. John, The Ranch Laguna Beach.
This event is orchestrated annually by Kristin Martin and KM Productions, without whom this event would not take place. Somehow Martin successfully stages this event every year, and every year is a highlight.
For more information on upcoming Table for Ten events, visit https://www.tableforten.org.