Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s annual fundraising weekend returns to New Orleans on November 7 and 8, 2014. Premier chefs from across the nation and New Orleans will descend upon downtown for a two-day culinary celebration, featuring the Louisiana-inspired outdoor festival Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s Boudin, Bourbon & Beer and wine auction and black tie gala dinner Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s Carnivale du Vin. The weekend also brings together the top names in wine, bourbon and craft brews. Funds raised at both events benefit Emeril Lagasse Foundation, which supports children’s educational programs, life skills development initiatives, culinary training, and cultural enrichment in New Orleans and the Gulf south.
Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s Boudin, Bourbon & Beer has quickly grown to become one of the region’s top food and music festivals. This year, the festival will move to a new, larger home at Champions Square. Guests can expect fast ticket scanning and multiple entrances with ticket processing through Ticketmaster. Event co-chairs Emeril Lagasse and Donald Link, along with 50 of the country’s best chefs, will prepare their version of the Louisiana delicacy boudin and other artisanal sausages. The chef lineup includes Hugh Acheson, John Besh, Ashley Christensen, Justin Devillier, Ed Lee, Andrea Reusing, Susan Spicer, Frank Stitt, and more. Abita will pour its flagship beers and specialty selections. Grace Potter will headline the roster of great music, and more bands will be announced soon. To raise additional funds, chefs will offer exclusive auction packages. Nat Sherman will provide a cigar tasting and more surprises will add to the fun.
The following evening brings the festivities indoors for an exquisite gala, the 10th anniversary of Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s Carnivale du Vin, at Hyatt Regency New Orleans. Emeril Lagasse and his wife Alden Lagasse celebrate this major milestone for the organization by welcoming premier visiting chefs and winemakers. Guest chefs include Jimmy Bannos, Jr., Jimmy Bannos, Sr., Michelle Bernstein, Roy Choi, and Jacques Torres. “Honorary Bacchus” winemakers from the last ten years will return, including Au Bon Climat, Caymus, Gemstone, Kosta Browne, Pride Mountain Vineyards, Schrader Cellars, and Williams Selyem. Emeril Lagasse will prepare a signature four-course wine pairings seated dinner, with selections served by award-winning vintners Patz & Hall, Merry Edwards, Post Parade, and Broadbent, with a bubbly toast from Champagne Louis Roederer. The auction ranks as a “Top Ten U.S. Charity Wine Auction” by Wine Spectator and features rare and fine wines and once-in-a-lifetime culinary and travel experiences. Michael Cavanaugh, who was hand-picked by Billy Joel to star in the Broadway musical Movin’ Out, will provide headline entertainment, and New Orleans musicians are featured throughout the evening.
Funds raised at both events go to the Emeril Lagasse Foundation, established in 2002 as the realization of Emeril Lagasse and his wife Alden Lagasse’s dream to improve the quality of young people’s lives.
Emeril Lagasse Foundation supports children’s education and non-profit organizations with culinary, nutrition, garden, arts and life skills programs. ELF has distributed more than $5.7 million in grants for children’s charities. Projects funded by the Foundation include an outdoor classroom, gardens, fresh foods cafeteria and teaching kitchen at Edible Schoolyard New Orleans, an accessible learning kitchen for special needs students at St. Michael Special School, a four-year culinary arts program for high school students at New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts, the Emeril Lagasse Foundation Hospitality Center at Café Reconcile, and hospitality training at Liberty’s Kitchen for at-risk youth preparing healthy school meals. In 2013, Emeril Lagasse was honored as the James Beard Foundation Humanitarian of the Year.