Borough’s Best & Brightest to enjoy Fantastic Food, Delightful Drinks and Nonstop Networking in an Enthusiastic Environment
(Kew Gardens, NY) The Queens Economic Development Corporation and lead sponsors Citi and Fairway Market are proud to announce that the borough’s premiere food-and-networking event, Queens Taste 2012, will take place at Citi Field’s Caesars Club from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on May 1.
All are invited to enjoy a range of flavors — everything from sweet to savory, Asian to Italian and crunchy to creamy. For example, Baluchis’s Indian Restaurant in Forest Hills is planning to provide vegetable samosas and chicken biryani. Meanwhile, Sunnyside’s Dog and Duck will serve (what else?) duck confit, and Uncle Peter’s of Jackson Heights will go with a pistachio-crusted monkfish in lemon butter sauce. And those are just a few options as 24 establishments are set to participate.
Plus, about 25 clients of the Entrepreneur Space, a food-and-business incubator that QEDC operates in Long Island City, will also be on hand with their artisan specialties. So attendees will be able to choose from desserts such as Moroccan cookies, specialty ice pops, brownie lollipops, gourmet cupcakes, nut bars and even designer marshmallows.
And then there are the drinks, which will include local wine from the Queens Farm Museum and beverages from a few out-of-borough purveyors. More wine will come from the Castello di Borghese Vineyard on Long Island. (Don’t forget that Queens is part of Long Island.) Brooklyn Brewery and Manhattan Beer Distributors will offer various hopsy-sudsy drinks, while Astoria’s Beyond Kombucha will brew various versions of refreshing fermented tea and the Turkish Cultural Center will percolate Turkish coffee.
As part of the fun, Steve Hofstetter, a comedian and co-owner of Laughing Devil, the borough’s only comedy club, will serve as MC. A huge baseball fan, Hofstetter has already expressed his enthusiasm for working a room where Mr. Met, a confirmed attendee, is standing.
Plus, five taste masters will sample the provisions and select a Best Appetizer, a Best Entrée and a Best Dessert. The taste masters work in the food or journalism business. Jeff Orlick is a local ethnic cuisine tour guide who operates the blog I Want More Food and creates food apps. Amanda Sidman contributes to the “Your Eats” and “Best of New York” sections at the New York Daily News. Rocco Vertuccio is a TV personality who anchors NY1’s Your Queens News Now. Julian Lesser publishes BORO Magazine, a glossy monthly covering the restaurant and lifestyle scenes in Western Queens. Veronica Lewin is a reporter for the Queens Tribune who covers anything and everything in the county’s southeastern section.
QEDC will also announce the winners of the Sixth Annual Queens StartUP! Business Plan Competition, a five-month challenge-and-instruction course sponsored by the Citi Foundation. Participants have already attended seminars on all aspects of launching a startup and submitted business plans. A panel of judges will select one winner each in the “Food-Based,” “Innovative” and “Social Enterprise” business categories. Each winner will receive $10,000.
“Queens Taste 2012 is our borough’s annual celebration of foods and beverages that reinforces our distinction as America’s most diverse county,” said Borough President Helen M. Marshall. “Where else can you taste everything from Moroccan cookies to Sunnyside duck? Come, taste and savor the Taste of Queens!”
“Queens Taste 2012 and the StartUP! competition are perfect ways for Citibank to kick off our nationwide campaign to celebrate National Small Business Week through the entire month of May,” said Mike Bingold, Citibank’s Small Business Region Director, New York City, Boston & Florida. “For the next month, Citibank branches across the U.S. will engage in a variety of activities and events to demonstrate to local businesses how important they are to the fabric of our communities and the overall economy. At Citibank, we understand the crucial role that small businesses play in job creation and economic recovery and we appreciate QEDC’s tireless work in creating and retaining jobs.”
“Citi is once again pleased to support Queens Taste 2012,” said Rei Perez, Citi Community Officer for Queens. “The Citi Foundation also supports StartUP! and several competitions throughout New York City to encourage innovation among entrepreneurs and create jobs in communities where they are needed most.”
“We are thrilled to be a sponsor of the Queens Taste 2012 and support the Queens Economic Development Corporation,” said Howie Glickberg, CEO of Fairway, who opened a Douglaston store last November. “We always look for ways to impact the communities in which we are located and being a part of the borough’s premiere food event is a perfect fit.”
“I look forward to Queens Taste all year,” said QEDC Executive Director Seth Bornstein. “It is so fun on so many levels. The food. The drinks. The people. The venue. The celebration.”
Queens Taste 2012 costs $100 per person or $185 per couple. Proceeds will support QEDC’s ongoing efforts to attract and maintain jobs in the borough through business services, neighborhood development, the Entrepreneur Space and marketing attractions through the Queens Tourism Council and the Discover Queens brand. As QEDC is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit, proceeds are tax deductable to the extent permitted by law.
Participating restaurants include Austin Steak and Ale House, Baluchi’s Indian Restaurant, Bourbon Street, Dazies, Euro Grill, F. Ottomanelli Burger & Belgian Fries, Giardino’s, La Bella Cucina, Leo’s Latticini — Mama’s, Magna Restaurant, Marbella, McClure’s Pickles LLC, O Lavrador Restaurant and Bar, Papazzio, Pop Diner, Riverview Restaurant/Lounge, Russo’s on the Bay, The Dog & Duck, Uncle Peter’s Restaurant, Vetro Restaurant and Lounge and White Castle.
Event sponsors include Citi, Fairway Market, Daily News, Con Edison, Kaufman Astoria Studios, Port Authority of NY & NJ, Capital One Bank, the International Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners, Cleary Gottlieb, Farrell Frits, Emily Lin + Associates Architects, The Mattone Group, Queens Center, Ares Printing & Publishing, the Greater New York Automobile Dealers Association, Herald Bank, Hollis Center Mall, Sholom & Zuckerbrot Realty, Webline Design, TCE Systems, TD Bank, The D&F Development Group, LaGuardia Community College and Flushing Bank.