Taste of the Nation Los Angeles June 2010

Taste Nation Los Angeles
Torchon foie gras with organic apple gastrique and marcona almond brittle from Bottega Louie 

This past weekend was as much a trial of strength and endurance as it was a trial of cooking and eating for us. On Saturday we hosted a dinner party for about 30 guests and the very next morning 9am we showed up for duty at Media Park in Culver City to volunteer for one of our favorite culinary events, Taste of the Nation Los Angeles.   Dedicated to ending childhood hunger in America, Share our Strength, organizes various Taste of the Nation events across America.  We volunteered at last year’s Taste of the Nation Los Angeles 2009 as well and had a wonderful time and so this year brought along several more volunteers including our friend Tifany and Krissy and Daniel of The Food Addicts.

While the main focus is to raise as much money as possible with 100% of ticket sales going towards ending childhood hunger, the secondary focus was to showcase the culinary talents, generosity, and comaraderie of the Los Angeles community.   Auctions for private dinners with the Border Grill Truck hosted by Susan Feninger and or Mary Sue Milliken fetched upwards of 4500 a piece. And that’s just one live auction item.  With over 40 restaurants and numerous wine and spirits booths, there were so many awesome bites, too many to possibly show, but we’ll hight a few that kept us coming back for more.

Taste Nation Los Angeles

Mark Gold’s (Eva Restaurant) charcoaled grilled prime beef with a sweet soy sauce and grated radish was simple and excellent. Loved that he put this right on the table in front of everyone. 

Taste Nation Los Angeles

Unfortunately can’t remember who this braised short ribs dish belongs to but it was delicious! Any readers know who made this dish? 

Taste Nation Los Angeles

Micro Plane Salad with Hazelnut Vinaigrette by chef Alex Reznik of Ivan Kane’s Cafe Was had a pretty presentation on a half shell.  Keep an eye out for Alex Reznik as he will be on Top Chef 7. 

Taste Nation Los Angeles
Lingua in salsa verde (braised beef tongue with fresh parsley pesto) from Lago in Santa Monica was great because we love tongue 🙂 

Taste Nation Los Angeles
Suzanne Goin’s Olive Oil Cake with creme fraiche, pistachios and candied tangerines was soo delicious and light especially on the hot day..this cake was made using California Olive Ranch olive oil and since we won a year’s worth of this olive oil we’re definitely going to try to make this.   We also love the fact that there were recipe cards on each table and took one from each table! 

Taste Nation Los Angeles

We met many of the awesome organizing committee and saw many familiar volunteers from last year. Paul the volunteer guy is always a joy to work with.  It’s no wonder why this is one of the best culinary events since so many talented and dedicated people are involved. Even Michael Voltaggio, the winner of Top Chef 6, got a tattoo of the logo to show his support for Share our Strength and Taste of the Nation Los Angeles.  We thoroughly enjoyed this year’s event and loved volunteering alongside The Food Addicts. We survived the weekend and can’t wait to do it all again next year!

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