Dining well is one of life’s great pleasures. But knowing that the money you spend for dinner also supports a worthy cause can make the experience even more satisfying. Here are four upcoming events that support worthy causes:
Friday, November 11: Taste of Thanksgiving
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Location: Cretin-Derham Hall High School, 550 South Albert Street, St. Paul
Carol and I had a lot of fun last year when we attended this fundraiser for the St. Joseph Worker Program, a ministry of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. This year’s buffet-style menu includes Ethiopian sambusas from the Flamingo, sweet potato crepes with curry mustard aoli from Glaciers Café, flourless Belgian chocolate tortes from Luci Ancora and Ristorante Luci, artisan cheeses, breads and Kalomon olives from Lunds, green curry with chicken and rice from Mango Thai and much more, plus Peace Coffee, craft beers and 30 wines from Minnesota and around the world. There will also be live and silent auctions, with lots of items of interest to foodies.
The St. Joseph Worker Program provides monthly stipends for a dozen young women who volunteer for a year in local nonprofit organizations, ranging from the Casa de Esperanza to Open Arms Minnesota.
Tickets are $45. Go to Taste of Thanksgiving 2011 to purchase.
Saturday, November 12: Noodle Cooking Class with Nina Wong
Where: at the Chin Dian Cafe, 1500 E. Hennepin, Minneapolis
When: Saturday, November 12
Time: Asian market tour (optional) 11-12 a.m., class 1-3 p.m.
This event should be a lot of fun – and it benefits a cause that I am particularly fond of:
Asian noodle dishes are great for parties or everyday fare – fast, tasty and healthy. Nina Wong, chef-owner of the Chin Dian Café, will show you how to prepare many different kinds of Asian noodles, including flat, wide, or thin rice, or egg noodles.
The fun starts with an optional tour of the Shuang Hur supermarket, 654 University Avenue W. St. Paul, where Nina will explain the different varieties of noodles and how they are used, and point out some of the traditional flavorings and ingredients used in traditional noodle dishes.
Then the lesson will take place at Chin Dian, where Nina will guide you through the simple techniques of creating these dishes. Please bring your own wok or frying pan and spatula. At the end of the class, you’ll all sit down to enjoy your lunch, and everybody will get a complimentary bottle of Nina Wong’s signature Black Stir Fry Sauce to take home.
A portion of the proceeds from this event will be donated to the non-profit Twin Cities Media Alliance, publisher of the Twin Cities Daily Planet.
Cost is $60. To reserve a spot, email Nina at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call the restaurant at 612-676-1818.
“The devastating flood is the worst Thailand has experienced in over 50 years,” Supenn reports. “The death toll from the flooding is over 446 nationwide. Nearly 9 million people have been affected and 66 of the country’s 77 provinces remain inundated with flood waters including Bangkok. The Prime Minister expects 6 more weeks of flooding before the waters recede.”
All Sawatdee locations will be participating in the fundraiser:
- Sawatdee Minneapolis, 607 Washington Ave S, 612-338-6451
- Sawatdee St. Paul, 486 Robert St, 651-528-7106
- Sawatdee Maple Grove, 7885 Main St N, 763-494-5708
- Sawatdee Bloomington, 8501 Lyndale Ave S, 952-888-7177
- Sawatdee St. Cloud, 800 St. Germain St, 320-240-1454
- Sawatdee Uptown Express, 1401 West Lake St, 612-353-6684
- Sawatdee Express Skyway, 733 Marquette Ave #211, 612-455-6056
November 17: Fete de Vin
Time: 6 to 10 p.m.
Location: Théâtre de la Jeune Lune – 105 First Street N, Minneapolis, MN 55401
I’ve mentioned this one before, but since it fits the non-profit theme, it’s probably worth repeating: Chefs from eight top French (or semi-French) restaurants, including Vincent A Restaurant, the Grand Cafe, Basil’s, Barbette and Haute Dish will offer samplings of their cuisine, and wines from eight top wine regions of France will be poured at the 1st Fete du Vin, to be held on November 17 (the traditional release date for Beaujolais Nouveau) at the Theatre de la Jeune Lune. Other highlights will include music by Davina and the Vagabonds and Robert Everest, silent auctions, and raffles for plane tickets to France, hotel stays, cases of wine, and more.
This event is a fundraiser for the French-American Chamber of Commerce of Minnesota, which promotes business ties between France and the Twin Cities, which seems like a worthy cause, even if it doesn’t rank up there with the St. Joseph Worker Program and the Thai Red Cross. The FACCMN is a 501(c)6 non-profit, which means that tickets are tax deductible for businesses, but not for individuals. Tickets are $35 for FACCMN members, $45 for non-members; to purchase tickets, go to their event registration page.