May has been FOOD BOWL month in Los Angeles, a 31-day festival of curated events produced by the Los Angeles Times to celebrate the city’s dynamic and diverse culinary scene and bring awareness to food waste and hunger through programs with chefs and food-justice activists. The charity partners include No Kid Hungry, PATH & Food Forward.

Last night I was among the two dozen or so journalists and influencers invited to a “friends + family pairings dinner” at Plant Food + Wine in Venice. These dinners have been held every Friday night in May, a collaboration between Chef Matthew Kenney and his plant-based lifestyle brand Plantlab and the luxury champagne purveyor Moët & Chandon.

Both companies are committed to sustainability. Chef Matthew wants to “craft the future of food to support the rapidly global demand for cuisine that is sustainable, nourishing and flavorful.” His restaurants include Plant Food + Wine in both Venice and Miami, Double Zero in NYC, Make Out in Culver City, plnthouse at the 1 Hotel in South Beach, Florida, and Matthew Kenney NM at Neiman Marcus in Beverly Hills.

Moët & Chandon has a long-term vision of sustainable growth. It holds dual certifications in “High Environmental Value” and “Sustainable Viticulture in Champagne.” Their commitment to green initiatives has deep, deep roots; after all, this is a Champagne house that dates back to 1743. By 2018, the vineyards will be completely herbicide free. In addition to carbon footprint reduction goals, water reduction and energy consumption reduction initiatives, electric vehicles and tractors are used for all daily operations.

The food that Chef Matthew and his team beautifully plated was every bit as luxurious as the bubbles. Dishes included smoked hummus crostini paired with Moët & Chandon Grand Vintage 2008, hearts of palm ceviche complemented by Moët & Chandon Ice Impérial Rosé, a gorgeous vegan heirloom tomato and zucchini lasagna with macadamia ricotta and pistachio pesto that was served with Moët & Chandon Grand Vintage Rosé 2008.

Plant Food + Wine’s lovely patio is available for buyout and culinary workshops are offered on the second floor of the restaurant, which overlooks that plant-filled space.

The Serving Up Hope Luncheon, hosted by the Meetings Industry Council of Colorado on Nov. 6 at Denver Mart and attended by approximately 700 industry professionals, raised more than $24,000 for the Food Bank of the Rockies Denver’s Table. In addition, approximately 14,700 meals were donated day-of by attendees, resulting in an overall total of 114,210 meals. Awards for the most food donated per member were given to the Christian Meetings & Conventions Association and Colorado Society of Association Executives. 

 

The Meeting Professionals International Rocky Mountain Chapter hosted its annual golf tournament at Red Rocks Country Club in Morrison on Aug. 20. The “Team Freeman” consisting of DJ Baca, Derek Barnes, Lee Byrd and Bonnie Yordy placed first, and Darnell Brown, Josh Ebaugh, Jeremy Wilson and Alan Wooldridge, who made up “Team Broadmoor,” landed second.

 

The National Association of Catering & Events Greater Denver Chapter filled two vaults and two conference rooms at Renaissance Denver Downtown City Center on Aug. 14 to find treasure in the form of information about the ins, outs and liabilities intrinsic to keeping events safe and secure. The “On Alert: Is Your Event Plan Ready?” gathering featured speak - ers Pete Hemschoot, Johnson & Wales University, Denver; Adrienne Gardner, The Gardner Effect Event Planning; Ed David, Denver Police Department; and Tony Clapp, Jachimiak Peterson.