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Press Release: Local Chefs Take Center Stage
Local Chefs Take Center Kitchen for Open Table’s Chopped for Charity Gala
Evening to feature chefs’ cooking challenge, food and silent auction
Concord and Maynard, MA (February 10, 2023) – Open Table, the MetroWest charity dedicated to fighting hunger and building healthy communities, today announced that acclaimed local chefs Ben Elliot of Concord’s Salt Box Kitchen, Matt Kenah of Acton-based WECO Hospitality, and Kelcy Scolnick of Winchester’s Wright-Locke Farm will compete at this year’s Chopped for Charity gala with television and radio personality Chef Joe Gatto as the Master of Ceremonies. Celebrity judges include Tiziana Dearing of WBUR Radio, Andy Husbands of The Smoke Shop BBQ, and Peter Malloy of Nashawtuc Country Club.
VIP tickets are $200 and include preferred seating, a private reception, meet the chefs, and a high-end spirit tasting. General Admission is $150 per person. Tickets are available starting February 10th at Opentable.org/chopped.
This year’sChopped for Charity will be held at the beautiful and spacious Nashawtuc Country Club in Concord, MA, on Friday, April 28. In addition to the chefs’ challenge,the gala will also feature raffle baskets, silent and live auctions, and a cash bar. A light meal will be provided, including delicious desserts from the Open Table kitchen. A VIP reception takes place from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.; doors open for general admission at 6:30 p.m.
The evening’s honorees will be Jill Block and Wade Rubenstein and, in memoriam, community leader Debra Stark of Debra’s Natural Gourmet.
“The highlight of the evening is the fast-paced competition between the three chefs before an expert panel of judges,” said Norma Frye, Open Table BOD member and Chopped for Charity Co-Chair. “The event will benefit Open Table’s mission to address hunger in our local community by offering a wide variety of healthy and culturally appropriate food choices in our pantry and meal programs.”
Chefs competing in the Chopped for Charity challenge:
Chef Ben Elliot – As chef, farmer, and owner of Concord’s Saltbox Farm, Saltbox Kitchen and Saltbox Catering, Ben oversees all elements of the farm-to-table journey – playing an active daily role in planting, harvesting, preparing and serving his cuisine. Prior to Saltbox Kitchen, Ben’s 20-year career includes time spent at La Folie and the Fifth Floor under Chef Laurant Gras in San Francisco and Locke-Ober in Boston. More recently, he worked with chef Barbara Lynch in Boston as Chef de Cuisine at No.9 Park, opening Lynch’s demonstration kitchen Stir, and launching Lynch’s catering company 9 at Home as Chef de Cuisine.
Chef Matt Kenah – Matt Kenah is the Director of Culinary at Acton-based food delivery service WECO Hospitality. He leads the culinary teams in multiple kitchens and heads the test kitchen team in trying new dishes for WECO’s weekly menus. Starting as a dishwasher and moving up in the kitchen from line cook to head chef, Kenah worked in restaurants all over New England, becoming a key player at WECO when the meal delivery service began in 2020.
Chef Kelcy Scolnick – Chef Kelcy is a Lowell-based chef and educator focusing on eating with the seasons and supporting her local community through private cooking classes and dinner parties. She is also the Farm Chef at Wright-Locke Farm in Winchester, MA, where she runs a variety of educational programming for people of all ages and creates delicious farm-to-table food experiences.
Photo Caption: Local chefs (left to right) Ben Elliot of Concord’s Salt Box Kitchen, Matt Kenah of Acton-based WECO Hospitality, and Kelcy Scolnick of Winchester’s Wright-Locke Farm will compete at the Open Table Chopped for Charity gala
Experts seated at the Chopped for Charity judges’ table:
Tiziana Dearing, host of Radio Boston on WBUR, has been a commentator and contributor to WBUR for more than a decade. Prior to joining the Radio Boston team, Tiziana was a professor at Boston College in the School of Social Work, where she taught social innovation and leadership. A longtime anti-poverty advocate, Tiziana also ran Boston Rising, a startup antipoverty fund working to end generational poverty in Boston and was the first woman president of Catholic Charities for the Archdiocese of Boston.
Andy Husbands is the award-winning chef, author and pitmaster behind The Smoke Shop BBQ, Boston’s acclaimed barbecue restaurants, and four-time winner of Boston Magazine’s “Best Barbecue” as well as The Improper Bostonian’s “Boston’s Best” Award for “Best Barbecue.” Husbands drives awareness for No Kid Hungry, the nation’s leading childhood hunger relief organization, serving as honorary chair of its annual Taste of the Nation fundraiser. He is also a Vice President of the Massachusetts Restaurant Association, for which he was honored as MRA’s Chef of the Year in 2014, works closely with the Rodman Celebration for Kids, and is an avid volunteer at local women’s shelter, Rosie’s Place.
Peter Malloy is executive chef at Nashawtuc Country Club, where he has been a part of the culinary team for over 10 years. With a passion for food and an unwavering commitment to high-quality ingredients, he creates vibrant, memorable, and nourishing dishes for club events and private functions. Throughout his career, Peter has worked in some of the most prestigious kitchens in the area, having honed his mastery of classical French cooking techniques at the renowned Cambridge School of Culinary Arts.
Joe Gatto, master of ceremonies for the evening, is a private chef, culinary Instructor, author, and host of the cutting-edge cooking show From Scratch. His private-chef client list has included a star Boston Red Sox player and the CEO and founder of iRobot among others.
Open Table is a 501(c)(3) established in 1989. Its mission is to address hunger in the local community by providing healthy food in a welcoming environment while respecting the dignity and diversity of those served. For more information, visit: www.opentable.org