Chefs & Champagne 2017 Event Honors Marcus Samuelsson

Chefs & Champagne
Honoree Marcus Samuelsson celebrates with the participating chefs during the 2017 JBF Chefs and Champagne at Wolffer estate on Saturday, July 29, 2017 in Sagaponack, N.Y. (Photo by Mark Von Holden/Invision for James Beard Foundation/)

The phenomenal James Beard Foundation hosted an incredible soiree and honored multiple James Beard Foundation Award–winning chef, author and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson at its 27th annual Chefs & Champagne summer fundraiser.

More than 1,000 guests attended the grand Chefs & Champagne benefit at the Wölffer Estate where 35 chefs presented their artwork. The Foundation’s tasting party featured flowing Champagne Barons de Rothschild, wines and ciders from Wölffer Estate Vineyard.

Chefs & Champagne
Wolffer Estate Sparkling Rose at the James Beard Foundation’s Chefs & Champagne® annual summer fundraiser at Wölffer Estate Vineyard in the Hamptons on July 29, 2017. Photo by David Chow / Courtesy of the James Beard Foundation.

The summertime event is always one of the most popular Saturday nights out east, and it is all for an amazing cause. Food tastings experienced were delightful; and at the same time a silent auction consisting of one-of-a-kind dining experiences, wines and spirits, cookware, and culinary travel packages raised over $100,000 to support the JBF’s mission, scholarship, education and JBF Impact Programs, which include the annual Food Summit and Leadership Awards that help promote a better food system.

The foundation also announced Jordan Werner as the recipient of the 2017 Christian Wölffer Scholarship and the ICC Intensive Sommelier Course tuition waiver. Established in 2006, the Christian Wölffer Scholarship assists students in their study of food and wine. Also in attendance was multiple Christian Wölffer Scholarship recipient Christina Cassel and JBF National Scholars recipient Earlene Cruz.

This year’s summer fundraiser honoring Marcus Samuelsson was one of our most successful ever,” said Susan Ungaro, president of the James Beard Foundation. “Marcus is a role model for chefs, restaurateurs and culinary entrepreneurs worldwide. His extraordinary talent, philanthropic endeavors, and boundless energy to help others complements our mission to celebrate, nurture, and honor chefs and other leaders making America’s food culture, more delicious, diverse, and sustainable for everyone.”

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Chefs & Champagne’s guest of honor, Marcus Samuelsson, joined the ranks of gastronomic giantssuch as Bobby Flay, Thomas Keller, Emeril Lagasse, Wolfgang Puck, and Martha Stewart, who have all been fêted at prior events.

Chefs & Champagne
James Beard Foundation President Susan Ungaro and Honoree Marcus Samuelsson seen at the 2017 JBF Chefs and Champagne at Wolffer estate on Saturday, July 29, 2017 in Sagaponack, N.Y. (Photo by Mark Von Holden/Invision for James Beard Foundation)

Samuelsson is the acclaimed chef behind Red Rooster Harlem, Ginny’s Supper Club, and Streetbird Rotisserie. A committed philanthropist and the youngest person to ever receive a three-star review from The New York Times, he has won multiple James Beard Foundation Awards including Best Chef: New York City, and was tasked with planning and executing the Obama Administration’s first State dinner.

Sponsors for the James Beard Foundation’s Chefs & Champagne include Wölffer Estate Vineyard (host venue); Champagne Barons de Rothschild (exclusive champagne); Neuman’s Kitchen, Events & Catering (VIP after-party); Alfredo Prodotti, Audi, Big Green Egg, Brewery Ommegang, FreshDirect + FoodKick, Gokokuya, Hamptons.com, Hamptons Magazine, KAMUT®, Melissa’s® Produce, The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Miami Beach, Royal Cup Coffee and Tea, Saratoga Spring Water, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, VerTerra Dinnerware, Windstar Cruises, and WVVH.