Dining for a Cause: The Varli Food Festival

What do April 7th, Varli Magazine, the Food Bank for New York City, Master Chef Sanjeev Kapoor, the famed red carpet, world-renowned celebrity chefs and the phenomenally mouth-watering flavors of Indian cuisine have in common?

For those in the know, that commonality equates to a spectacular landmark evening that is a treat for four of the five senses—of sight, sound, smell and taste. Announcing the Varli Food Festival taking place Thursday, April 7, 2011 and held in the historic Altman Building in the heart of Chelsea. For the rest of you who didn’t know . . . now you know.

Food . . . and so Much More!

Prepare yourself for a unique four-hour feast on a totally different level. Imagine being surrounded by the sumptuous flavors of India, basking in the entertainment with live music on one side of you, food and dessert tastings on another, cooking demonstrations to your left while celebrity chefs engage the audience on your left.

“Who are these celebrity chefs?” you ask yourself. Well, in addition to Master Chef Sanjeev Kapoor—who, as India’s adored host of the ever popular Khana Khazana cooking show and recipient of numerous esteemed awards, is reason enough to attend this ground-breaking event—also taking part will be Chefs Floyd Cardoz, Vikas Khanna, Jehangir Mehata, Hemant Mathur, Maneet Chauhan, Hari Nayak, Prasad Chirminola, Peter Beck and (not pictured) Chefs Suvir Saran and Walter D’Rozario.. Select chefs will also participate in a cookbook signing with 100 percent of the proceeds from the sale of the cookbooks being donated to charity.

But that’s not the end of it. A silent auction, an Indian cuisines documentary film screening and dessert, wine and liquor stations will also be vying for your attention as you make your way throughout the room. And, of course, there’s the food. With over 30 Indian restaurants participating in this great event, festival-goers can get their fill of some of the most savory cuisine that New York City has to offer. Junoon, Chola, Tawa Tandoor, Baluchi’s, Heritage of India, Copper Wok, Minar, Thali—these are just some of the restaurants that will send your taste buds on an impeccable journey across the Indian culinary landscape. Restaurant Tasting Booths will fill the room so guests can sample the specialties of each restaurant and learn more about the fabulous flavors of Indian cuisine.

Tickets for the Varli Food Festival are $100, with 10 percent of the proceeds going to charity (courtesy of Varli Magazine and Food Bank for New York City). In addition to the wonderful food and entertainment, attendees will receive a gift certificate booklet—with discounts totaling over $500—to be used at participating restaurants.

Mark your calendar for Thursday, April 7 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Come hungry and ready to soak up the flavors, aromas and beauty of India.

For tickets and more information, including a complete list of participating restaurants, visit www.varlifoodfestival.com.

About Valerie Albarda (35 Articles)
Valerie is a lover of all things food, including writing about it and devouring it. An avid traveler, she loves to soak up the culture of the places she visits and explore the culinary treasures wherever she goes. She is the author of "An Affair to Remember: Bellissimo Italia" which chronicles her traveling and dining experience in Venice, Florence and the Tuscan countryside. Valerie is currently working on her second book, "From City to Safari: One Woman's Exploration of Johannesburg".