Come with an open mind — and empty stomach.
Welcome to the inaugural Politics of Food event, which brings Downtown Manhattan restaurants and chefs together on Nov. 16 for a day of discussions and tastings.
Guests will enjoy two main events, presented by the 11-time Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Daily News; and City & State, the multimedia bipartisan news organization dedicated to New York’s federal, state and local government, political and advocacy news.
The Politics of Food events take place Nov. 16.
The Politics of Food Conference (8 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.), which costs $ 45 per person, kicks things off in the morning at the New York Institute of Technology auditorium on the Upper West Side (1871 Broadway). The conference will explore food policy issues facing consumers and the food industry, and bring together top chefs, policy makers, and innovators from different fields to look at important food issues and trends. Topics will include the future of food programs for NYC’s vulnerable communities and legislating nutrition and food events in New York.
Bring your appetite to the Politics of Food Festival in the evening (7 – 9 p.m.) at the Museum of American Finance (48 Wall St.) in the Financial District. For $ 125, feast on dishes from Downtown restaurants while listening to live music and mingling with foodies and special guests.
Or, gain early access to the festival for $ 195 for a VIP reception (6-7 p.m.), where there will be meet-and-greets with celebrity chefs before others are let in. Participating restaurants range from tapas hotspot Amada to burger heaven Shake Shack.
Visit politicsoffood.nyc to purchase tickets or learn more about the Politics of Food events. Here are two chefs taking part in the festival.
Mark Rosati, culinary director at Shake Shack.
Mark Rosati, culinary director at Shake Shack
Kitchen cred: worked various positions in the kitchen of Gramercy Tavern under both Chef Tom Colicchio and Chef Michael Anthony
Fave fall dish to make at home: Either rabbit braised with white wine and apple cider or beef short ribs braised in red wine. Pretty much ANYTHING braised, especially when served with roasted root veggies! I grew up in New England and these flavors remind me of when the weather starts to get colder.
Advice for those who say they can’t cook: Start off with a dish you love to eat, research various recipes on it and dive in. It makes learning so much easier when you try cooking a dish you are familiar with and have enjoyed many times since you know what it’s supposed to look and taste like.
One food I hate: White chocolate and I’m not really sure why. I love milk and dark chocolates, but just can’t get into white. Perhaps it’s because it’s often too sweet.
When I’m not cooking, I’m usually… Playing guitar. I’ve been doing so for over 30 years.
5 tools every cook should keep in their kitchen: Sharp knives, first and foremost. A sharpening stone too to keep them finally honed at all times. A cast iron pan (great for griddling burgers at home). A powerful blender, such as a Vita-Prep, which has many, many uses in the kitchen. A Microplane zester.
The junk food I can’t live without: Little Debbie. I love all of her incredible snack cakes.
Favorite NYC restaurant that’s not my own: Gramercy Tavern. It’s the first restaurant I fell in love with when I moved to NYC (and the reason I got into the hospitality industry) and 20 years later it’s still at the top is its game.
Shaun Acosta, executive chef at the Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown
Kitchen cred: he was sous chef at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco; executive sous chef at the Four Seasons Resort Hualalai; and attended the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco
Shaun Acosta, executive chef at the Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown.
(Elaine Fancy )
Fave fall dish to make at home: Kale-sweet potato salad with charred Brussels sprouts, cranberries, candied pecans, crispy quinoa and aged balsamic. My family loves sweet potatoes and Brussels sprouts, so I thought it would be easy to make a quick salad. Then I thought, “Oh this would be good…and it needs a crunch,” and finally ended up with this salad. It’s become a family favorite.
Advice for those who say they can’t cook: Don’t be afraid, you’ll be surprised how easy it can be.
When I’m not cooking, I make time for… Family time, then golf, then fishing.
Name 5 tools every cook must keep in their kitchen: A good Japanese knife, two Gray Kunz Spoons, Microplane zester, thermometer.
The junk food I can’t live without: Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.
The best dish I’ve ever eaten: Apple butter, creme de brie, toasted barley. I had it in 2014 at Ludo Lefebvre’s Trois Mec in Los Angles (troismec.com). The dish was just beautiful. Nice texture with rich bold flavors — the perfect ending to a great meal.
Favorite NYC restaurant that’s not my own: Blue Ribbon Sushi (blueribbonrestaurants.com).