Monday night I attended one of my favorite annual events, the C-CAP Fundraiser, one of the proudest nights of the culinary world. The food and the guest list are always sublime, but this is also one of the most meaningful charity events that I am lucky enough to support each year.
C-CAP stands for Careers through Culinary Arts Program. Started in 1990 by culinary educator and author Richard Grausman, C-CAP works with public school students all across the nation, securing scholarships and opportunities for them to begin careers in the culinary and hospitality professions. So many underprivileged youth have gone on to have remarkable careers thanks to C-CAP.
The evening includes a tasting menu put together by 40 of NYC’s greatest chefs, including Tom Colicchio, Masaharu Morimoto, Marcus Samuelsson, Alfred Portale and the list goes on and on. So obviously the food is delicious. In addition, a notable chef or restaurateur is selected as guest of honor, and this year it was my friend Tony May, “the ambassador of authentic Italian cuisine”.
Every time I see Tony, I am instantly transported back to one of the best vacations that Michael and I have taken, almost two years ago to the island of Capri. Tony May was our guide on that trip, and along with his wife, Halima, we shared some unimaginably fun days and nights. Tony is a native Italian, born in Campania, and he knows Capri like the back of his hand as he has been going since he was a boy. He was gracious enough to show us not just Capri, but HIS Capri.
I am so tired of winter on the East Coast (as you may be too), so allow me to fantasize for a few moments and travel back in time with you. I hope these photos will cheer us all up and get us daydreaming about the sunshine that is just a few months away.
I remember the day that Tony took us to his favorite beach club, Torre Saracena. We walked down a winding Mediterranean road on a cloudless day with the view of the sparkling sea below us.
Tony knew the chef well and we got the royal treatment. The food was, as you can imagine, incredibly fresh and flavorful. The best ingredients prepared simply and with love. There was lobster, summer tomatoes, pasta, snails, fresh mozzarella.. nothing fancy but it’s the food we love eating in the summertime.
This really was one of the best trips of our lives. I’m longing for summer, but glad I have memories of Capri to keep me warm in the meantime..
Ciao bellos!! Arrivederci!