Each year, the Sustainable Seafood Dinner (or, as it was known in the past, “Trash Fish”) aims to educate, inspire and, of course, satisfy some appetites. And this year’s event, held on Sunday, August 6th, may just have been the best one yet.
Louies Modern serves as the backdrop to an exciting evening, and this year, they were even kind enough to open up the whole ballroom for the event. The extra space made for a highly successful cocktail party, with four additional chef stations, a DJ, delicious craft beer booths from Calusa Brewing and Darwin Brewing Company, demonstrations by Two Docks Shellfish, and, of course, sustainability stations set up by Mote Marine and Seafood Watch.
Throughout the room were projectors with videos from Chefs Collaborative and Seafood Watch, featuring sustainability statistics. It was extremely encouraging seeing the engagement and interest from all who attended.
The cocktail party set the stage for a great beginning.
From there, guests moved into the dining room, with dinner starting promptly at 6:45pm - a record! The turnout was amazing, and everyone was thoroughly engaged and interested in learning more about making responsible dining decisions. Chef Steve even got to assist with a surprise proposal by Chef Mark Woodruff of Made Restaurant. (Congrats on the engagement, you two!)
“Overall, it was a big hit. My goal with this event is really to make sure the chefs get something out of it and feel inspired to make a real change,” said Chef Steve. “It’s encouraging to have people coming up to you saying, ‘Thanks for letting me a part of this. I learned a lot.’”
Chef Steve worked with the other chefs to ensure the menu was up to Seafood Watch’s standards, utilizing species in the green “Best Choices” category. (You can learn more about that here.) Everyone received pocket guides, and the chefs all downloaded the Seafood Watch app. (You should, too.)
“The more that people start knowing the app is out there, the better. There it is right in the palm of your hand. You can make responsible decisions right there at the store,” said Chef Steve. “Everyone that left the dinner has the opportunity to do that now.”
No rest for sustainability - planning for the next event is already underway! Chef Steve would like to thank Nikki Logan Curran and Tracy Freeman for working with him to put together another successful event - and, of course, Louies Modern for their generosity and Seafood Watch for promoting a healthier, happier planet.
“It was great to be able to point everyone in the right direction and push them forward,” said Chef Steve. “Next year, we’ll shoot to make it even bigger.”
But he’s not resting until then. Exciting things are in the works Stay tuned...