Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Food Fight, Round 3. Online Charity Austin Serves Up Foodie Experience​s

Austin’s most unique and tasty online charity auction gears up for Round 3 with a lineup of culinary contenders that are sure to have food lovers putting up their dukes. The 12-day online bidding battle begins Monday, Oct. 17 with a menu filled with one-of-a-kind foodie experiences.
The 3rd Annual Food Fight! is the yearly fundraiser for the Austin chapter of Les Dames d’Escoffier, an international service organization of women culinary professionals who support local school garden projects, culinary scholarships and hunger programs.
More than 75 unique and tasty culinary experiences ranging in value from $25 to $750 will entice food and wine lovers to battle it out to secure winning bids. Chefs, restaurants and culinary businesses have generously donated items from dinners to autographed cookbooks to VIP culinary experiences. The bidding begins on Monday, Oct. 17 at and new items are continually added throughout the auction. The online aspect of the auction makes it easy for anyone to bid and support the Les Dames’ community initiatives.
“Austin Dames have tapped their resources to create bid packages with many food and wine insider opportunities you can’t get anywhere else,” said Cathy Strange, president of the Austin Les Dames chapter and global cheese buyer for Whole Foods Market®. “And the best part is that the good-natured bidding wars all benefit school gardens and culinary scholarships for women.”
Whole Foods Market, a leading natural and organic foods supermarket, is the auction’s presenting sponsor, and is joined in support for the online charity auction by Greenling, CultureMap Austin, Field Branding + Design, MeFoodie and the Austin Food Blogger Alliance.
A sampling of auction items up for bid includes:
  • A Tea Party for 12 – 24 guests at the Steeping Room with the Grande Afternoon Tea Service
  • Cypress Grove Cheese Getaway with two nights stay in Arcata, Calif. at the Carter House Inn with VIP tour, wine dinner and cheese making with internationally renowned cheese master Mary Keehn, creator of Humboldt Fog.
  • East Austin Farm Tour with Chef Sonya Cote of East Side Show Room.
  • Best of South Congress - A night for two in a pool side bungalow at Austin’s famed uber-hip Hotel Saint Cecilia, plus dinner for two at Perla’s Seafood & Oyster Bar.
  • Private Chef and Wine Dinner at Stone House Vineyard in the Texas Hill Country with winery owner Angela Moench.
  • One Night of Your Travaasa for Two + Culinary Class - Austin’s newest destination hotel on Lake Travis offers a one night stay for two with breakfast and a private one-hour cooking class with Travaasa Executive Chef Ben Baker.

The Austin Chapter of Les Dames has one of the largest chapter memberships for the international organization and is filled with Austin’s most dynamic women culinary professionals committed to serving the local community. Chapter members offer scholarships and mentoring to women entering the culinary and hospitality industries, organize culinary education events, support school garden projects and volunteer hundreds of hours each year in the community helping to feed Austin’s homeless. To donate items for the Food Fight! Online Charity Auction, email  For media queries, please contact Cathy Cochran-Lewis,

Les Dames d’ Escoffier International (LDEI) is an organization of women leaders who create a supportive culture in their communities to achieve excellence in the food, beverage and hospitality professions. Founded in 1976 in New York as a non-profit organization, LDEI’s mission includes education, advocacy and philanthropy. The Austin Dames chapter was chartered in 2003 and is one of 28 chapters in the U.S. and Canada.

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