HughE Dillon: Could Craig Robinson Be the Next Bachelor?

Plus a fabulous PAWS party at the Union League, and a special sale tonight at Saks in Bala

Monday night was the sixth annual Chefs’ Dinner for Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society (PAWS), an event that brings chefs and patrons together for an interactive evening of food, fun and fundraising. More than 40 of the nation’s best chefs created an extraordinary gastronomic experience at The Union League. The dress was “gala chic,” but not black tie. The list was the who’s who of the Philadelphia area and, of course, animal lovers.

Pet lover and founder/president Dana Spain was front and center welcoming her guests and then guiding them through the evening from cocktail party, to dining tables, and back downstairs to complete the night at the dessert bar under the watchful eye of presidents Ronald Reagan, Abraham Lincoln and the newly installed George W. Bush—all of their portraits hang at the Union League. On the social scale this event is a 10, and no matter your political persuasion or your past indiscretions, the crème de le crème show up for this event to support PAWS’s animal-rescue initiatives, which include adoption and foster care programs, spay-and-neuter surgeries, low-cost vaccinations, and, of course, to be seen in their party best.

Dana Spain
looked fantastic and enjoyed the evening along with many friends and her parents Joan and Bernie Spain. The Spains recently held an exclusive party at their home overlooking Washington Square to raise funds for the park. Later that evening their guests joined the first Washington Square Gala.

Lucky Strikes chef Terrence Clarke explains his menu—his version of the cheesesteak five-ounce filet, with green peppers, sweet potatoes and a demi-glace—to diners Michael Williams and Christopher Arnold (Happy Birthday Chris!), and Charlie Pasquale and Donna Coghlan.

Natalia Gamarra and Ricardo Maldonado (left) made the scene before they headed out to a wine pairing at Del Frisco’s. Busy night for these two who haven’t been seen on the social scene in a while. I also found Ashley Russell and Buffy Varanese (marketing director at Delilah’s) working the scene. Several Delilah’s girls were selling raffle tickets, but I didn’t catch what the prize was for.

Nicole Cashman, Steven Gartner and Jessy Kyle. Jessy, who’s an R&B/jazz/soul singer, performs every Thursday night at Table 31, starting at 8 p.m. News at Cashman & Associates: they welcome Lindsay Furman to the fold this week. Also spotted: Joan Pileggi, Aly Green, John Westrum, Steve Rockman, Christian Kassis, Michael Spain-Smith, Michael Piszek, Scott Lean, Bianca DeMarco, Mike Jerrick, Danielle Krupa, Lauren Beloff, Carol Tamburino, as well as chefs Roberta Adamo and Eileen Watkins of Penne, Jose Garces, Matthew Levin, and Quincy Jones from Union Trust.

Adam Spivak and Karen Sajda. I haven’t seen Karen out and about lately as she’s been busy opening her own salon: Style of Man in Conshohocken. Adam enjoyed the Courtney Love concert Tuesday night, after Courtney finally found her way to the stage after a 20-minute delay. A case of stage fright perhaps? I don’t know if you’ve seen Courtney lately, but she looks more refreshed than a breath mint. I guess she had a little work done before she hit the road to do grunge rock.

New Couple Alert: Ed Lambert II and Katie Griffin. Katie’s been busy producing What Not To Wear in NYC. There were a few people at the PAWS event she wanted to make over, but she whispered them in my ear and I certainly won’t tell.

Maria Quattrone and Robert Ambrosi, of ARCWheeler (the company that built 10 Rittenhouse), Renee and Don Freeman, of Freeman Interiors, and Andi Pesacov.

Brigitte Addimando, Tal and Jill Jacobson, Dave Maser, and Gwen Gioia. Gwen was on the second season of The Bachelor. Which reminds me … Philadelphia attorney Craig Robinson was sent home without a rose from the current season of The Bachelorette, but have no fear—he is in the running to be the next Bachelor on ABC. The world will know by July 25th.

Getting their La Cage Aux Folles on are Amanda Hartung and Anthony ChilaWhile Bringing Sexy Back is Sabrina Tamburino Thorne and Andi Pesacov. Tonight at Saks Fifth Avenue in Bala Cynwyd, Sabrina and the girls, Nicole Cashman, Kristen Foote and Lauren O’Dorisi, are hosting a soiree cocktail party from 6 to 8 p.m. There will be specials and discounts, so leave your Black Card at home.

The PAWS event raised more than $200,000, but before I knew it the night was over for what is probably one of the last big social events in Philadelphia until the fall … but the dogs and cats still need your help. So won’t you help them at PAWS.

Check out my personal blog for daily posts or follow me on Twitter @iPhillyChitChat for up to the minute info on events and who’s doing what where.