Taste America, Italian Style, with Brian Boitano and the tablehopper, on October 23rd and 24th


Raising a glass at James Beard Taste America 2014. Photo by Gamma Nine Photography.

By Dana Eastland. The James Beard Foundation’s Taste America Tour is coming to San Francisco on Friday October 23rd and Saturday October 24th with a bunch of ways to celebrate good eating. On Friday October 23rd, you won’t want to miss the Night of Culinary Stars. It kicks off at 5:30pm with a cocktail reception and is followed by a 7pm dinner. This year, the party is focused on Italian cuisine and will take place at the iconic Bimbo’s 365 Club in North Beach.

All your favorite chefs with Italian restaurants will be there, including Tony Mantuano of Spiaggia in Chicago, who is preparing dinner. He’ll be joined by Suzette Gresham (Acquerello), Chris Marchino (Cotogna), Rocky Maselli (A16), Craig Stoll (Delfina), and Staffan Terje (Perbacco), so you know the food will rock. Pasta in the casa!

As for wine, Mark Bright (Saison), Kimberly Charles (Charles Communications), and Shelley Lindgren (A16 and SPQR) are chairing the wine selections, and their pairings promise a fun and delicious evening.

Oh, and the best part? This evening of Italian celebration is going to be emceed by Marcia Gagliardi, the tablehopper herself. She’ll be running the show along with the fab ice skating champion Brian Boitano of the Food Network’s What Would Brian Boitano Make?—no doubt they’ll keep everyone giggling all night long.

The event is a fundraiser for the James Beard Foundation’s excellent scholarship program, which provides money for culinary students and aspiring chefs for their education. For more information on the scholarship program and its many alumni, head here.

Tickets to the evening are general admission $350 per person, or $3,250 for a table of 10; VIP tickets are $425 per person or $4,000 for a table of 10 and include preferred seating, a chance to meet the chefs, and a special gift. 1025 Columbus Ave. at Union.

Then, on Saturday October 24th, Sur La Table on Union Street will be hosting cooking demonstrations from Tony Mantuano (10am) and Rocky Maselli (12pm). Reservations for the demonstrations can be made here starting October 10th.

Event Info

Friday Oct 23, 2015 – Saturday Oct 24, 2015
Cocktail reception at 5:30pm, Dinner at 7pm
General admission $350 per person, or $3,250 for a table of 10; VIP tickets are $425 per person or $4,000 for a table of 10
Information and Tickets
Bimbo's 365 Club
1025 Columbus Ave. at Union