The American Cancer Society (ACS) hosted the 15th annual Taste of Hope virtual celebration.

Sting Performing at Taste of Hope
Sting Performing at Taste of Hope

The event celebrated New York City’s iconic restaurant industry and raised critical funds for cancer research and local patient service programs offered by ACS.

This year’s Taste of Hope recognized James Beard Award-winning culinary honorees, Chef Michael White (Marea) and Chef Joseph ‘JJ’ Johnson (Fieldtrip). Mark D. Friedman and Jamie Koff returned as event co-chairs, and CBS News’ Chris Wragge returned at emcee.

The event featured a special performance by Sting, and appearances by Giancarlo Esposito (The Mandalorian, Breaking Bad), Mario Cantone (Sex and the City), NFL Hall of Famer Harry Carson (NY Giants), Amy Ryan (The Office), Peter Onorati (This is Us), Harry Lennix (Blacklist), Alysia Reiner (OITNB), and Bobby Cannavale. Event guests had the opportunity to hear first-hand how cancer continues during the pandemic and the devastating impact covid-19 has had on life-saving programs and services from two time cancer survivor, communicator, Coach and Author of Make Room for Joy, Vanessa Joy Walker.

The pre-show featured cocktail demos from mixologists at Golden Grove Global and Pepsi Co, and opened with a performance by The New York Voices Plus Three. There was an after-party hosted by DJ SPINDIESEL with livestreamed performances and a special appearance by John Cusimano and Rachael Ray. Attendees such as philanthropist Jean Shafiroff tuned into watch the virtual celebration.

Taste of Hope is the American Cancer Society’s signature culinary, wine, and spirits event. In a normal year, Taste of Hope provides 700+ guests the opportunity to enjoy bites from New York City’s top restaurants and philanthropic chefs, and sips from leading winemakers and spirit brands. Due to safety precautions, this year’s event will be a reimagined virtual party, celebrating the work of local chefs and New York City’s culinary community, and honoring cancer survivors and loved ones lost to cancer.

Now in its 15th year, Taste of Hope has raised over $1.8 Million to support the American Cancer Society’s mission and goal of eliminating cancer as a major health problem. Attendees also had the opportunity to bid on silent auction prizes donated from leading organizations including: a coveted table at Rao’s, 1-1 Private Virtual Cooking Demo with David Burke, Dinner for 10 Guests at their home with Chef Michael White, and more.

This year’s Taste of Hope executive committee included Drew Blumenthal, Jennifer Cayetano, Gail Eissenstat, Nicole Filingeri, Juan Goulbourne, Rachel Halperin, Lizziee Jerez, Lauren Kaufman, Wayne Margolin, Melanie McManus, Sari Pollack, Kim Poulos, Meredith Rinn, Susan Santoro, Linda Shapiro, Scott Sheehy, Melissa Siegel, Brittany Stevenson, Jennifer Valentine, Vanessa Walker and Chelsea Whitney.

Taste of Hope sponsors included Arbill, Def Jam Recordings, Eurostruct Inc, the Friedman Rosenthal Team At Brown Harris Stevens, KGI Design Group, Leumi Bank, McIntosh & Moon Strategies, Merrill Lynch Walters Bailey Associates, Olshan Frome Wolosky LLP.

You can still make a donation to view the show at www.tasteofhopenyc.org.

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