Santé A Culinary Odyssey | GoodEatsMD

Thursday, Nov. 20, The National Kidney Foundation hosted their 2014 Santé: A Culinary Odyssey fundraiser. The event took place at M&T Bank Stadium’s club level. A Culinary Odyssey gives people a chance to sample some of the best fare in Baltimore while raising money for a fantastic cause.

Originally I was asked to simply cover the event but once at the venue, I was asked to be one of the judges. Each of the restaurants was fighting to be crowned Judge’s Best Overall, Most Creative, Best Booth and lastly, the People’s Choice, which was chosen by all of the guests. Alongside myself, judges included respected food critics, chefs, media personnel, athletes and Kidney Foundation Ambassadors.

Once on the club level, I was given a list of the restaurants and their locations and I was free to go and sample. I knew prior to the event that nearly 45 vendors were participating in the fundraiser, but it didn’t truly hit me how many great samples I got to try until I started walking around.

The Club Level of M&T Bank all set up for the event. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

The Club Level of M&T Bank all set up for the event. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

My favorites of the event were The Boathouse, Birroteca, Banditos, Ten Ten Bistro, B&O American Brasserie, Portalli’s and Talara. The Boathouse was serving a decadent mac n’ cheese topped with lump pieces of lobster meat. Talara had a decomposed sushi-esque dish with a chipotle ceviche. Birroteca featured a juicy piece of crispy pork belly.

Tamara's executive chef. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Tamara’s executive chef. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

The BoatHouse's Lobster Mac. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

The BoatHouse’s Lobster Mac. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Panna Cotta from Portalli's. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Panna Cotta from Portalli’s. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Banditos. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Banditos. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Birroteca's Crispy Pork. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Birroteca’s Crispy Pork. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Richardson Farm was by far the most creative. Richardson Farm, which is a farm to table style restaurant, had a whole roasted pig, which they paired with a crisp apple and a caramel sauce, a clever play on a caramel apple.

The judges voted Ten Ten Bistro as the Best Overall dish, Banditos as the Most Creative and Stratford University’s dessert sampler as the Best Booth. Richardson Farms was voted as the People’s Choice.

Bandits Spicy Dumpling. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Bandits Spicy Dumpling. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Stratford University's  pastry display. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Stratford University’s pastry display. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Richardson Farm's whole roasted pig. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Richardson Farm’s whole roasted pig. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

The event was much more than just a culinary journey. There was a silent auction with some amazing beauty products, sports memorabilia, gift certificates and other goodies. The event also had a live auction and raffle tickets all benefiting The Kidney Foundation.

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A Culinary Odyssey was such a beautiful event that I had the pleasure of covering. A huge thank you to all of the delicious restaurants I had the opportunity of sampling.

Please look into donating to this fantastic cause.

Full list of A Culinary Odyssey restaurants.

The House of Audre. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

The House of Audre. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Heavy Seas Ale House Chef preparing his dish. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Heavy Seas Ale House Chef preparing his dish. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Clementine's version of patty. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Clementine’s version of patty. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

SOBO Cafe homemade biscuits and jam. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

SOBO Cafe homemade biscuits and jam. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Until next time. I wish you GoodEats!

The view from the judge's VIP reception. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

The view from the judge’s VIP reception. Photo by Taylor Seidel/TU Student

Edited by Jared Kurlander.

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Tagged: A Culinary Odyssey, Baltimore, fundraiser, GoodEats, M&T Bank Stadium, Maryland, National Kidney Foundation, Sante

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