[UPDATED INFO AND WEEKEND EVENTS AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS POST]
Just like the rest of us, chef Eli Kulp has been riveted by the images coming out of Texas and Louisiana over the past few days. The flooding there has been unlike anything seen before — a cataclysm that will take months to recover from. And just like the rest of us, Kulp was wondering what he could do to help.
His answer (like any chef’s answer would be): cook.
So he got the idea that he would donate the proceeds from one dish on the menu at each of the High Street Hospitality restaurants (a.kitchen, High Street on Market, Fork, High Street on Hudson, a.bar) to a charity helping out those battered by Hurricane Harvey. Then he figured he’d see if any of his other chef friends wanted to pitch in.
Thus was #Chefs4Houston born, less than 24 hours ago.
The response was quick. Greg Vernick was on board. Nick Elmi went on Instagram, offering $10 from each gnocchi sold at Laurel to Houston relief efforts (for the foreseeable future) and for tonight, all proceeds from a sea bream with summer ragu and lobster espelette broth, too. Zahav is pitching in, as are Will BYOB and Scott Schroeder and some restaurants from Garces Group. And the list is still growing.
Kulp, Ellen Yin and High Street Hospitality will be offering one dish at each of their restaurants through Labor Day, with all profits from that dish going to a yet-to-be-named charity. Kulp and Yin haven’t picked which organization they’ll donate to yet because the situation on the ground is still evolving — and because Kulp is trying to coordinate with his chef friends in the Houston area, like Chris Shepherd from Underbelly and Justin Yu at Oxheart. They may even form their own charity in order to directly address the needs of restaurant crews in the region. Here’s what Kulp had to say.
“It’s impossible not to be moved by the catastrophic events unfolding along the Gulf Coast, and we knew at once that we wanted to take action and lend support to our fellow restaurant workers as they recover and rebuild. Because this is an ongoing event, we have not chosen a specific charity partner at this time, but we wanted to begin raising funds immediately, in order to have the greatest impact possible.”
Talking to Kulp this morning, we got a statement about how things are coming together. He said, “With Chris [Shepherd’s] help, we are finding ways to flow the money directly to individuals in the restaurant and hospitality industry to help them rebuild their lives and livelihoods.”
Elsewhere, Eater is reporting that Marcie Turney and Val Safran are donating 10% of total sales from all their shops and restaurants on Tuesday, September 5. And Philly.com has word from Mac Mart that they’re donating 50% of sales from their Cowboy and Cowgirl mac and cheese cups to charity.
Obviously, all of these plans are just beginning to come together. It’s early days, and the region is going to be in need of help for a really long time. So keep an eye out and we’ll continue to update you with other charity events happening in the coming days.
In the meantime, check out #Chefs4Houston for more information.
- On Thursday, Avram Hornik’s FCM Hospitality donated 100% of profits from all six locations to the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund started by Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner.
- From Thursday, August 31 through Monday, September 4, all 53 nationwide locations of Sullivan’s Steakhouse (including the one in King of Prussia), Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House and Del Frisco’s Grille will be donating 20% of sales in hopes of raising $1,000,000 for Houston area food banks.
- Manatawny Still Works is donating $2 from each cocktail and $5 from each bottle sold at the Pottstown distillery and Passyunk tasting room to the Houston Humane Society “to help the organization in the aftermath of Harvey and what will surely be the gargantuan task of caring for abandoned animals and reuniting pets with their families.” Then, on Saturday, they’ll be doing the same deal, but donating proceeds to the American Red Cross. Can’t make it to the locations? That’s cool. Take a picture of your bottle and receipt from Friday or Saturday and tag it on social media (Instagram: @manatawnystillworks, Twitter: @manatawnysw, Facebook: @manatawnystillworks).
- Federal Donuts is rolling out a new peanut caramel apple fancy donut (in collaboration with Makers Mark bourbon). And from Friday, Sept 1st through Monday, September 4th, they’ll be donating 100% of proceeds from sales of this donut at all their locations to the Houston Food Bank.
- Kensington Quarters is donating 10% of sales from Friday’s lunch through Monday’s brunch to #Chefs4Houston.
- Through Labor Day, a.kitchen and a.bar will be donating 100% of the proceeds from their roasted veal loin with smoked carrot romesco, green onions, and hazelnuts to the Houston community through #Chefs4Houston.
- Cuba Libre, Luna Cafe, Cafe Lift, Bufad and Prohibition Taproom have all signed on to chef Eli Kulp’s #Chefs4Houston project.
- The Lucky Well is donating 50% of all brisket sales over the holiday weekend to #Chefs4Houston.
- Knead Bagels is donating all proceeds from its pastrami-spiced bagel with dill pickle cream cheese sold today to Hurricane Harvey relief efforts.
- Keg & Kitchen is doing a tailgate fundraiser for Hurricane Harvey victims.
- Here’s an appropriate one: Rex 1516 is donating 100% from every Hurricane sold at the bar this weekend. Or, to think of it another way, donate $10 to the CDP Hurricane Harvey fund and get a Hurricane for your trouble.
- Through Sunday, 50% of sales of Cafe Ynez‘s Pato con Mole ($20) will be donated to The Pediatric Advanced Care Team at Texas Children’s Hospital to help the families of children currently undergoing palliative care.
- Jet Wine Bar is donating $5 for every Tito’s Gimlet sold to Houston Pets Alive.
- Sidecar has 9 burgers on the menu. They’re donating a buck from each one sold through Monday to the American Red Cross.
And there are still more coming in. Keep track of it all at the #Chefs4Houston hashtag on Instagram.