Who Wants to Eat Like a Millionaire? and more from Cuisines Editor Virginia B. Wood.
Somehow, Valentine's Day managed to slip by with no notice from this column, but there's both a pre- and a post-Valentine's event worth discussing. The fourth annual Guess Who's Coming to Dinner? fundraiser for Project Transitions was a huge success on Saturday, Feb. 3. To give you an idea of what you may have missed, guests at the home of Gina and Ken Burchenal worked their way up through several courses in a "Who Wants to Eat Like a Millionaire?" dinner, while another lucky group enjoyed Nuevo Latino food and Latin rhythms at a party titled "Emily Post Meets Ricky Ricardo" thrown by local personal chefs Pamela Nevarez and Donald Wertz. Hosts Danny Hamilton and Paul Hilliard fed their guests beef Wellington prepared by La Traviata's Marion Gillchrist while local artists worked at easels set up around the house at the "Art as Food" dinner, and Central Market Westgate chefs Robert and Suzann Garde enchanted the guests at their dinner with multiple courses from "Our Seasonal Kitchen." In all, more than 250 people enjoyed an evening of great food and fascinating company for the opportunity to support one of Austin's most worthwhile organizations. Project Transitions is dedicated to serving people with AIDS by providing hospice care, housing, and support. To get on the mailing list for next year's dinners, call 454-8646 Many of Austin's top female entertainers will join forces with some of the top women chefs in town to support the Austin Girl's Choir at the second annual "Women Who Cook" fundraiser this coming Sun, Feb. 18, from noon-6pm at La Zona Rosa. Enjoy the music of Marcia Ball, Lisa Tingle, Toni Price, the Texana Dames, Eliza Gilkyson, Rotel & the Hot Tomatoes, plus members of the Girls Choir throughout the afternoon while feasting on samples from Rebecca Rather of Rather Sweet Bakery in Fredericksburg, Marion Gillchrist of La Traviata, Kathryn Mathis of WakiChef, Anna Solinas and Nilda de la Llata of El Sol y La Luna, Concetta Mastroianni, Rebecca Wallace of Word of Mouth Catering, Debbie Ponce of Canyon Cafe, Private Affairs Catering, and the Culinary Academy of Austin. There will also be a raffle and a silent auction during the afternoon. La Zona Rosa will operate a cash bar. Cover charge for all this great food and entertainment is $15 in advance through the AGC office (453-0884) and $20 at the door. Proceeds from the event will support the young singers' tour of the East Coast in June as well as an upcoming tour of England and France.
It's not too late to get some of those lovely and delicious heart-shaped raviolis from Bottega Della Pasta (4201 S. Congress Ste. 101, 416-1114). Chef Rino Lanzalotti will be stuffing the little pasta pockets with goat cheese, artichoke hearts, roasted shiitake mushrooms, asparagus tips, and herbs, and they'll be available with sauces to match the rest of the month There's still plenty of time to get your King's Cake for a pre-Mardi Gras celebration. The New Orleans-style cakes decorated with purple, green, and gold sugar topping can be found at both Central Markets, La Madeleine, La Mexicana, and La Victoria bakeries. If you're partial to the French-style King's Cakes, those can be purchased at Sweetish Hill and La Madeleine Chileheads won't want to miss Chuy's Red Chile Daze promotion, which begins Monday, Feb. 18. This tribute will focus on the distinct flavors of New Mexico red chiles such as fresnos, arbols, and chipotles, and will spotlight several new menu items such as Chiles Diabolos, Nachos Alegres, and the Red Chile Carne Guisado Burrito at all three Chuy's locations.
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