The James Beard Foundation's Taste America Tour

 Kimberly Charles presenting James Beard Foundation Chefs Champagne honoree Pierre Franey with a 6 liter of Taittinger Champagne.

Kimberly Charles presenting James Beard Foundation Chefs Champagne honoree Pierre Franey with a 6 liter of Taittinger Champagne.

When I moved to New York City in 1985 from Washington D.C. to join Kobrand Corporation’s marketing department, one of the highlights of my career was watching the James Beard Foundation launch the very next year.  I worked closely with the James Beard House & team to showcase wines, and put on special dinners with leading chefs.  I’m proud to say that I started the Chefs and Champagne event with Taittinger Champagne as a young marketer, which still runs today quite successfully.  

Flash forward to 2006  to the 30th anniversary of the Foundation, when Taste America was launched in 10 U.S. cities.  I was proud to co-chair the inaugural San Francisco event with Andrew Freeman, my dear friend and colleague from both New York and now San Francisco.  It was a stellar kick off to what has now become an annual celebration of American food & drink at its highest level.

 Kimberly Charles and Andrew Freeman in 2006

Kimberly Charles and Andrew Freeman in 2006

I am thrilled to, once again, be a part of the event committee for the upcoming James Beard Foundation's Taste America Tour fundraising dinner taking place at Bimbo’s 365 Club in San Francisco’s historic North Beach on Friday, October 23rd. For the past three years I, along with my fabulous wine co-chair Shelley Lindgren have been asked to help curate the wines for the dinner. This year we are thrilled to have the stellar Saison partner and sommelier Mark Bright join us as well!

 Photo courtesy of Gamma Nine Photography

Photo courtesy of Gamma Nine Photography

The evening will highlight an epic Italian dinner from All-Star Chef and James Beard Award-winner Tony Mantuano (Spiaggia, Chicago, IL), Michael Tusk (Quince) and dessert from Sarah Rich (Rich Table) as well as several local star chefs from some of the city’s finest Italian restaurants. With that said, you can expect a fantastic array of wines to be served.

If you would like to enjoy this one-of-a-kind dinner, you’re in luck! There are still a few tickets available for purchase here with proceeds benefitting the James Beard Foundation.

Buon Appetito!

 

By Kimberly Charles.


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