Aug 1, 2013
A Night for the Palate, Kidney
Overlooking the Manhattan skyline, guests enjoyed delectable entrees, fine wine and hand-rolled cigars at a benefit that competed over their attention.
By COLlive reporter
Photos by Levi Percia
It's not easy getting people's minds off food. Never mind some of the most decadent looking and tasting delicacies and entrees, served with an almost unlimited supply of fine wine and cigars, at the Tribeca Rooftops in Lower Manhattan.
"How do you compete with a buffet? It's impossible!" commented comedian Elon Gold, hopelessly trying to distract the crowd from what New York and New Jersey's top Kosher restaurants were showcasing at the 2013 Herzog Food & Wine tasting event.
An assortment of deli cuts and even chicken liver were offered by Gourmet Glatt, T-Fusion Steakhouse and Guttman's Catering. Mexican restaurant Kosher Taco from Lakewood, NJ, presented a taco dish, even though their slogan is "We are not just tacos."
Some trendy appetizers were served by Etc. Steakhouse of Teaneck, NJ, with a cube of watermelon topped with beef carpaccio and avocado mousse. Or the miniature pizza slice with seared tuna and diced peppers from the Reserve Sushi & Steakhouse Restaurant, also from Lakewood, NJ.
And then there was the aroma hailing from the stand of Jack's Gourmet Sausages & Deli Meats where they were grilling their newest concoction: burgers made with smoky and salty dry-cured beef that's meant to taste like "the real thing." "We use beef belly instead of the pork belly," co-founder Alan Broner was heard explaining.
Another food establishment from Crown Heights, Basil Pizza & Wine Bar was a little more risque with their offerings, preparing chilled cantaloupe shooters with espolette and smoked salt. And then a curby pickle, with beet and ginger cured artic char, charmoula or tuna, avocado mousse, grilled plum and jalapeno.
And then there were top shelf wines from Herzog Winery, barbecued meats, ice cream, an assortment of pastries, and hand rolled cigars dipped in a mixture of honey and scotch before being lit up in the summer breeze against the backdrop of New York City's magnificent skyline.
So it was quite understandable that the talented Los Angeles comedian found it all a challenge. "No one's listening," Gold said as the line-up of chairs in front of him were filling up very slowly. "This is the weirdest show I've done in my life."
But the truth is, the event was very much about the cause: the Renewal nonprofit organization dedicated to assisting people suffering from various forms of kidney disease. Throughout the event space large banners told the stories of some of the 219 lives that were saved in the last 7 years.
"If you see a donor, hug a donor," stated New York City Councilman David Greenfield, expressing the gratitude that was given to the selfless and kind-hearted kidney donors that attended the event which was entertained by Shloimy Gertner.
In fact, they got so much attention that the organization's very first kidney donor told COLlive.com that he removed his name tag so he can mingle freely. Renewal's President Sendy Orenstein urged him to put it back on.
"We started out with 2 kidneys a year and we grew to facilitating one transplant approximately every 10 days," Orenstein later said. "Tonight you see how a Chabadnik helps a Young Israel person and a Satmar gives life to a Sephardic person."
Indeed, where the chessed knows no bounds so does the food, apparently.
Learn more about their work at Renewal.org