Nation’s Biggest Culinary Event for LGBTQ Equality Hosts Top Chefs and Mixologists

Wednesday, October 26, 2016 will mark the fifth year running that the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation and prominent food writer David Hagedorn will assemble the capital region’s top chefs, pastry chefs, and mixologists for an event known as Chefs for Equality. The evening of food, cocktails, and music to benefit the fight for full LGBTQ equality is happening at Washington, DC’s Ritz-Carlton Hotel. In addition to the always impressive fare, attendees can look forward to an auction benefiting the HRC Foundation.

Image: Tom Williams
Image: Tom Williams

“Chefs from all over the region are coming together for our incredible event to stand with the LGBTQ community and help raise crucial funds for the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s vitally important work,” said Hagedorn. “Despite tremendous progress made, LGBTQ people still face unfair and unjust discrimination in far too many places across the country. And with more than 200 anti-LGBTQ pieces of legislation introduced in 34 states this year, the work of the HRC Foundation is more important than ever before.”

Image: Tom Williams
Image: Tom Williams

The event will also honor the late renowned chef Michel Richard—a strong supporter of the LGBTQ community and patron of Chefs for Equality since its inception—with a special table in his memory. The Washington Post said Richard’s “…innovative and whimsical fusions of French and American foods made him one of the country’s most influential chefs.”

As they’ve done each year since the event’s inception, Christopher Vazquez and Rick Davis of Amaryllis Floral Event + Design will enhance the Ritz-Carlton’s ballroom for the amazing event. Renowned DJ Shea Van Horn will provide the music for Chefs for Equality and the after-party.

While Chefs for Equality features savory tasting and drink stations headed by the capital region’s top chefs, pastry chefs, and mixologists, the jewels in this event’s crown are eight personal chef tables, each offering an opportunity to dine with celebrity chefs on a lavish five-course meal amidst all the action during the night. Celebrity chef groupings for these tables include: Jen Carroll, David Guas, and Ris Lacoste; Ian Boden, Bryan Voltaggio, and Jeremiah Langhorne; Victor Albisu, Amy Brandwein, and Nick Stefanelli; Cathal Armstrong, Erik Bruner-Yang, Scott Drewno, Danny Lee, and Yesoon Lee; Todd Gray, Vikram Sunderam, and Alex Levin; Tarver King, Marjorie Meek-Bradley, and Johnny Spero; Mike Friedman, Jamie Leeds, and Michael Schlow; Bill Smith, Joy Crump, and David Shannon.

Image: Tom Williams
Image: Tom Williams

These tables will share the floor with two centerpiece tables for 16 guests, each matched with Washington’s most celebrated fine dining chefs. One table will include cooking luminaries Patrick O’Connell, Frank Ruta, Aggie Chin, Fabio Trabocchi, Robert Wiedmaier, and Eric Ziebold, while the other, a tribute to the late Michel Richard, will include chefs David Deshaies, Cedric Maupillier, Roberto Donna, Kaz Okochi, Eric Krempp, Jeff Buben and Luigi Hervé. Providing the bread for all 10 of the personal chef tables will be Baker Mark Furstenberg of Bread Furst.

You’ll find the complete list of participating chefs, pastry chefs, bakers, and mixologists at

Tickets for Chefs for Equality can be purchased at, while tickets for the after-party at Mike Isabella’s Kapnos restaurant can be purchased separately for $50. All proceeds will benefit the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s nationwide work for LGBTQ equality.

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is the educational arm of America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work, and in every community.

[Top image: Tom Williams]

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