Dine Out For Life, +3 More Feel-Good Foodie Events in Seattle

Leslie Kelly

There are lots of feel-good feeds coming right up. Here are a few to put on your Good Citizen calendar:

Thursday, April 25th is the Dining Out For Life event at restaurants around the city. This benefit for Lifelong AIDS Alliance is in its 20th year of raising funds to meet the needs of patients in the area. A portion of the tabs--most donate 30%, some 50%--go toward this important effort. We suggest you make a day of it: eat breakfast at Wild Mountain, Le Pichet or the 14 Carrot Cafe, lunch at Serious Pie, Red Mill or Oddfellows, and dinner at LloydMartin, Lark, Tutta Bella or Etta's. (For a complete list of participating restaurants, click here.)

On May 13, the ever-influential Michael Pollan will talk about how getting back into our own kitchens is the most important step we can take in making the American food system healthier and more sustainable, the subject of his new book, Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation. It’s fitting that a chunk of the $125 ticket will benefit the Neighborhood Farmers Market Alliance. The ticket price includes admission to a pre-lecture reception featuring wines from Pepper Bridge, Amavi and Woodward Canyon, all members of Vinea, a Walla Walla-based group dedicated to sustainable practices in the vineyards. 8 p.m. Benaroya Hall, 200 University St.; seattlesymphony.org

May 19, the University District Food Bank is rounding up some nifty trucks for a mobile chowdown party to launch its capital campaign to build a new facility. For 30 years, this food bank has been operating in a teeny 800-square foot basement facility. In 2012, they had nearly 55,000 customer visits and distributed over 2.3 million pounds of food. This chowdown for the 21-and-older crowd will feature Skillet Street Food, Molly Moon’s Ice Cream, Contigo, Crisp Creperie, Chopstix, Veraci Pizza, Hallava Falafel, Street Treats, Seattle Biscuit Company, and one of the very first appearances by Barking Frog’s new food truck, aka the Road Toad. Oola Distillery, Golden Distillery, Sozo Wines and Fremont Brewing Company will also be pouring samples, and there will be live music, too. 3-7 p.m. $25. Phinney Neighborhood Center, 6532 Phinney Ave. N; phinneycenter.org 

And on May 23, FareStart’s first annual Guest Chef Spectacular will take place at the Showbox SoDo and will feature tastes from more than 40 of the area’s top restaurants, wineries, breweries and distilleries. The local non-profit organization, which provides culinary job training and placement for homeless and disadvantaged folks, kicks off this new annual celebration of the talented chefs and restaurants that support FareStart’s training programs throughout the year by introducing a VIP lounge and a wine shop. This fete replaces the Chefs on the Waterfront event, which retired in 2011 after a seven-year run. Here’s a sneak peek at the lineup:

Chef Craig Hetherington of TASTE Restaurant; Chef Mauro Golmarvi of Assaggio Ristorante; Chef Jeff Maxfield of SkyCity at the Needle; Chef Dan Gilmore of The Hunt Club at the Sorrento Hotel; Chef Chris Zarkades, Margaux; Ambassador Vineyard; Hedges Cellars; Purple Star & Native Sun; Two Mountain Winery; Lobo Hills/Anthony Cellars; Smasne Cellars; 14 Hands Winery; Columbia Crest; Kerloo Cellars; O Wines; Van Camp Cellars; Batch 206 Distillery; Letterpress Distilling; Sidetrack Distillery. 6:30 p.m. $80 ($70 early bird tickets; $125 VIP tickets for early admittance, exclusive tastes, and premium wines; tickets available online only); Showbox SoDo, 1700 1st Ave. S; showboxpresents.com