March of Dimes

Three hundred guests gathered to taste the finest in Jacksonville’s food, to mingle, participate in silent auctions, sit in on the thrill of a live auction and to listen to fine music.
The entertainment for the event included a violinist Beverly Chapman and gifted jazz musician Aaron Bing.
Among the local celebrities spotted supporting the March of Dimes cause were the Pierson twins and Jaxson de Ville. Bruce Hamilton played the MC for the evening.
The chefs present were the creme de la who’s who of Jacksonville cuisine.
The handsome Jose Pierre manned the Morton’s Steakhouse station. We popped over for a bit a steak and some shrimp. I don’t think it was our imagination-more women flocked to his station than any other!
In the next booth over local celebrachef Robert Tulko wasn’t at all jealous and took advantage of the gender specific crowd gathering beside him by offering up his turkey penne.
Ceviche fans would have been convinced to sit down at Cantina Laredo for a bit of gourmet Mexican once they tasted the samples at the event.
Fontana’s served up a rich pasta dish with aromatic Italian sausage and roasted red peppers in a creamy rose sauce.
Giovanni’s also dished out the pasta, though they featured a roasted garlic parmesan fettuccine with chicken and wild mushrooms.
Maggiano’s, as always, did well, this time with a pork tenderloin and a surprising, creamy carrot drizzle.
Matthew Medure spent time over a pan as he sauteed escargot with shiitake mushrooms and sherry sauce-which was one of the most well presented dishes of the eve.
The Melting Pot offered a chocolate fountain and goodies to dip in it.
Also in the dessert category were the cake slices from Tasteful Creations, by Katie Dumphy. These cakes were amazing! At first we didn’t know they were cakes at all because she turn nearly anything into a cake sculpture-and they taste good too!
Salt intrigued with their different flavored salts and their excellent presentation.
We enjoyed the coffee seared tuna from Seven Bridges, but what’s stayed with us most was the positivistic and sunny disposition of Executive Chef David Turner. Not only does he serve tasty fare-he does it with an infectious smile!
You could smell the rich curry cooking at Tyler Brock’s station, where he offered up the good stuff from Aqua Grill.
All the passed hor d’oeuvres were tiny little bites of savory heaven, thanks to the ministrations of Executive Chef Mike Kamins of Bistro 202 and the Jacksonville Marriott.
It was difficult to pick a favorite dish. Bistro Aix’s seared scallops with a super creamy polenta and sofrito chorizo ragu won over our taste buds, as did the fabulous signature kona crusted dry aged steak from Capital Grille.
National celebrity Chef Rock (of Hell’s Kitchen Season 3) wandered the crowd as he sampled food. An exclusive evening of food from the chef, along with a flight to and from Vegas was the Live Auction of the evening everyone was waiting for!
All in all it was a success, raising $120,000 for the local March of Dimes.