The 8th Annual Symphony of Chefs was held on Monday, February 26, 2018 at Sixty Five Hundred benefiting KidLinks. The night began with the sounds of Corey Breedlove on guitar during a hors d’oeuvres reception prepared by Chef Partner Justin Yoakum from Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar. Notable guests included Jolie & Bart Humphrey, Carmaleta & Otis Felton, Margo & Bill Goodwin, Dr. Tana Roberts & Tim Roberts, Daffan Nettle, Jeanie & Bert Conly, Karen & Mike Dollar and founding event chairs Bonnie & Nathan Shea. As the dinner bell chimed, 250 guests took their seats in front of the 25 featured dinner chef tables. Co-chairs Vinette & Mike Montgomery and Georgia & Marc Lyons welcomed guests to the 8th annual event before turning the podium over to WFAA’s Good Morning Texas co-host Jane McGarry. After recognizing a host of new and returning sponsors and a few brief remarks about the night it was time for the chefs and guests to enjoy their first course.
This year, Honorary Chef Chair Emeritus Salvatore Gisellu of Urban Family Restaurants passed the knife on to Honorary Chef Tiffany Derry who assembled an army of accomplished chefs including Tre Wilcox, Joanne Bondy, bbbop Seoul Kitchen’s Sandra Bussey, Fitzgerald Dodd, Chad Houser and Truluck’s Manny Vera. They were among the 25 Featured Dinner Chefs who created a global inspired 4-course dinner that was prepared table-side and paired with over 40 wines representing 8 regions donated by Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits D&E Fine Wine Group along with Toro de Piedra wines from Chile.
As the final courses were being prepared CEO Diana Crawford, during her remarks, noted the fact that 12 of the 25 tables for the 2018 event were hosted by sponsors who had come back to this annual dining experience 5 or more times, and that 7 had been to all 8 years of the event. It was proof that this is one dining event not to be missed! However it was her words of inspiration about KidLinks longstanding 35 plus years of history providing healing, hope and happiness to hospitalized and special needs children that opened the hearts of donors in the room allowing the non-profit to raise an additional $37,000 with just a few special auction packages and an appeal. Even Dallas Cowboys special guest #98 Tyrone Crawford got in on the action by upping the ante to one of the live auction packages helping KidLinks hit a new fundraising record of just over $260,000 raised!
The evening came to a close with a presentation of macarons from Haute Sweets Patisserie Executive Chef Gianni Santin and a decadent chocolate dessert from Dunia Borga from La Duni Baking Studio. Keeping with the night’s theme of “global fare”, KidLinks presented each guest with a perfect bound cookbook of recipes from the chefs to remember the evening by. Funds raised from this event will support KidLinks efforts to provide Healing, Hope and Happiness for the special needs of children through music and media.