The Foundation’s mission is to create opportunities to inspire, mentor and enable youth to reach their full potential through culinary, nutrition and arts education. Funding for the Foundation’s programs is provided through individual and corporate donations, as well as annual fundraising events Boudin Bourbon and Beer and Carnivale du Vin as well as a charity auction.
Boudin, Bourbon and Beer, held at the expansive Champions Square in perfect view of the Mercedes Benz Superdome, played host to over 60 award-winning chefs from restaurants all over the country serving boudin-inspired dishes as well as musical acts including Kristen Diable and The City and Nathaniel Rateliff and The Night Sweats. Dishes included Head Cheese Knockwurst from Nina Compton and Compere Lapin, Boudin Nachos with Bourbon Habanero Queso from Lindsay Mason and Cristiano Ristorante, Chicken Fried Boudin with Persillade, Aioli and Bread and Butter Pickles from Kyle Knall and Kenton’s Restaurant and Boudin Burrito, Padron Pepper Crema and Cilantro from Issac Toups and Toups’ Meatery. The event was a star studded food event that was generous with the samples and gave the 5,000 attendees the opportunity to try dishes from restaurants from around the country. Craft brews were provided by Abita Beer and Bourbon Cocktails by Buffalo Trace. All of the food, spirits and entertainment were well worth the $99 price of the ticket for the evening.
Carnivale du Vin featured culinary greats Scott Conant, Larbi Dahrouch, Rick Moonen and Jacques Torres and brought together the best in wine and food for a night of charitable giving. Over 600 guests experienced a five-course meal created by Emeril Lagasse and culinary students from the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts followed by a record-breaking live auction that raised over $1.5 million, which included a rare bottle of 2015 The Setting Wines Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon that sold at $350,000 – shattering a world record for the most expensive single bottle of wine sold at an auction. There was also a Fund-a-Need charitable element to the evening which raised money for recovery efforts in Sonoma and Napa Valley, Houston and South Florida.
Emeril Lagasse’s Foundation works throughout the year to fund projects including an outdoor classroom, gardens, a fresh foods cafeteria and teaching kitchen at Edible Schoolyard New Orleans, an accessible learning kitchen for special needs students at St. Michael Special School, a four-year culinary arts program for high school students at New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts, the Emeril Lagasse Foundation Hospitality Center at Café Reconcile, and hospitality training at Liberty’s Kitchen for at-risk youth preparing healthy school meals. To learn more about the Emeril Lagasse Foundation and its beneficiaries please visit www.emeril.org.