Chef David Chang at the 2017 MOFAD Spring Benefit / Courtesy MOFAD

Hosted by Anne Burrell, the evening will begin with a cocktail reception followed by a seated dinner prepared by New York rising stars and culinary leaders.

Food & Wine Editors
Updated March 26, 2018

The Museum of Food and Drink (MOFAD) will host its annual Spring Gala on Thursday, May 17 at Tribeca Rooftop with an after-party at City Winery. This year’s theme—Tasting Biodiversity—will celebrate the importance of biodiversity to the health of the planet and the future of the food system.

Hosted by Anne Burrell (Food Network) with media partnership from Food & Wine, the evening will begin with a cocktail reception followed by a seated dinner prepared by New York rising stars and culinary leaders. Selected by MOFAD’s Culinary Chair Alex Guarnaschelli (Butter), the chefs will include Suzanne Cupps (Untitled at the Whitney), Ghaya Oliveira (Daniel), Erik Ramirez (Llama Inn), and Alex Stupak (Empellón), who will join forces to design a menu of one-of-a-kind dishes with wine pairings by Jeffrey Porter (Del Posto). In keeping with the mission of MOFAD, which brings the world of food to life with exhibits you can taste, touch and smell, each dish will tell a story about biodiversity and act as an exhibit on the plate with surprising flavor profiles of common and lesser-known varieties of fruits, vegetables, meats, and spices.

Biodiversity will also drive culinary creativity at the reception, where Happy Cooking Hospitality will present tasting tables by the chefs of Bar Sardine, Fairfax, Fedora, Jeffrey’s Grocery, and Joseph Leonard. At the bar, MOFAD Founder Dave Arnold will mix specialty cocktails alongside Garrett Oliver, who will offer special beer pairings from Brooklyn Brewery.

“Biodiverse ingredients are not only critical to sustainability—they're also delicious. We are excited to highlight MOFAD’s commitment to biodiversity with a colorful, thoughtful dining experience that puts ingredients front and center,” said MOFAD Executive Director Peter Kim.

Chef Marcus Samuelsson at the 2017 MOFAD Spring Benefit / Courtesy MOFAD

The evening will honor David Chang (Momofuku Chef and Founder) for advancing national dialogue about the intersection of food, ingredients, and cultural identity, and Adam Eskin (Dig Inn Founder and CEO) for his commitment to sustainable sourcing. Each year at the gala, the MOFAD Inspiration Award is given to a distinguished visionary who is leading nationwide change with respect to the culture, history, science, production, or commerce of food and drink. Adam joins previous honorees Ruth Reichl and Harold McGee.

MOFAD’s annual gala gathers a “who’s who of the food world” in support of one compelling cause: opening the world’s first comprehensive, independent food museum. Funds raised help the non-profit work toward this ambitious goal and operate MOFAD Lab, a temporary experimental space in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. In 2017, MOFAD Lab engaged curious eaters of all ages and backgrounds with talks, tours, and tastings, as well as its ongoing exhibition, CHOW: Making the Chinese American Restaurant, which re-opens on Friday, April 13, 2018 with new and improved features.

Tickets start at $750. Visit to purchase tickets.

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