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Monday, December 11, 2006

Menu for Hope III


It's easy for those of us who have the luxury to write, read, debate or opine about the finer points of great cuisine to lose sight of one utterly tragic fact:   over 800 million people on the planet do not have enough food to eat.   Well, we in the food blogging community want to do something to address this critically important issue, and we're looking to you, our readers, for help.

Today marks the launch of the third annual Menu for Hope, a fundraising campaign in which we collectively convert our passion for food into a driving force to help those who are less fortunate.   Here's how it works.   Participating bloggers from around the world have donated food-related prizes, each of which will be separately raffled off in early January.   Between now and December 22, every $10 that you contribute to the cause will entitle you to one virtual raffle ticket, to be added to the drawing for whichever prize you specify.   So, what happens if you see a prize that you simply cannot bear to lose?   Then try stuffing the ballot box by contributing $50 and applying all five of your virtual tickets to the raffle for that one item.   What if you can't pick just one prize from the many great options?   Then contribute $70 and apply one virtual ticket to each of seven different prizes.   There's no limit to how much, or how many times, you can contribute, and 100% of the proceeds that we raise will go directly to the United Nations World Food Programme.

Before I provide the details on how to contribute, let me tell you a bit about the prize that I'll be donating.   Given that this site tends to focus quite heavily on Bay Area restaurants, it seemed only fitting that my prize should be related to a restaurant as well.   But which one?   As my mind cycled through the scores of great establishments that we have here in the Bay Area, one in particular jumped out -- a place so outstanding, that it has consistently remained at the top of my list of favorites for the past few years:   The Dining Room at the Ritz-Carlton.   Executive Chef Ron Siegel offers some of the most exciting, innovative, and satisfying cuisine in the entire region, served in a plush and elegant dining room by what I believe to be the best waitstaff in the city.   Now, you can certainly go to The Dining Room and have a great meal by ordering three courses a la carte, and I would never actively discourage anybody from doing so.   But there's no better way to experience the full breadth of Siegel's talents than to order one of his many tasting menus.   Whether you opt for the six-, eight- or nine-course menu, you are sure to be treated to a veritable parade of one brilliant dish after another.   Don't believe me?   Take a look at my review from last year.   In fact, here's an even better idea:   why don't you and a guest go to the restaurant and see for yourselves, on me?   That's right, my prize is a $350 gift certificate for The Dining Room at the Ritz-Carlton.   Interested?   Then write down and remember this Prize Code:

UW36

And most importantly, contribute early and often!   Now, here are the instructions on what you need to do:

  1. Go to the donation page.


  2. Make a donation in the amount of your choosing.   Each $10 you donate will give you one raffle ticket to be applied toward the prize of your choice.   Please specify which prize or prizes you would like in the "Personal Messages" section of the donation form, making sure to use the associated prize code(s) in your note.   If you donate more than $10, please be sure to indicate how many tickets you want allocated to each of your selected prizes.   For example, for a donation of $50, you might include a note such as "2 tickets for UW01 and 3 for UW02."   And once again, the San Francisco Gourmet Prize Code is UW36.


  3. If your company matches your charity donation, please remember to check the box and fill in the information so that we can claim the corporate match.


  4. Please also be sure to check the box to allow us to see your email address, so that we can contact you in case you win.   Your email address will not be shared with anyone.


  5. Results of the raffle will be announced on January 15, 2007 on Chez Pim.

If you want to see a summary of all of the prizes that are available from bloggers around the world, please visit this page.   If you want to see what West Coast bloggers in particular have offered up, please go to this site.   And if you'd like to monitor the donations as they roll in -- and keep an eye on how many others are applying their raffle tickets against the prize that you want -- please go here.   Thanks, and good luck!

7 Comments:

Anonymous Brett said...

That's an amazingly generous prize, NS. If I win, I just may try to persuade you to join us at dinner.

December 11, 2006 6:18 PM  
Blogger Joy said...

Dude, you put me to SHAME! I am so bidding on this!

December 11, 2006 6:43 PM  
Blogger Sam said...

I'd take any all of them, Joy's, Brett's and NS's. I am not sure if I am allowed to enter this year as a host. Hmm, that would be sucky. If you win please bring me too ;)

December 11, 2006 9:52 PM  
Blogger Sam said...

And how remiss of me not to say thank you. thank you.

December 11, 2006 9:53 PM  
Blogger NS said...

Brett: I would consider it an honor to join you and N for dinner, as I've been hoping to have that opportunity for quite some time now. Regardless of the outcome of the raffle, let's definitely try to get together soon!

Joy: I must take issue with the first part of your comment -- nothing could possibly compare to your prize of a great meal at Delfina enjoyed in your outstanding company!

Sam: Thank you for all of your tireless efforts -- for the food blogging community in general, and for this important campaign in particular!

December 12, 2006 12:14 PM  
Blogger Pim said...

N, Thanks so much for such a generous gift. And sorry I somehow didn't link to it. It's all fixed now.

Thanks again for participating. We are so very close to $22K already. How amazing!

cheers,
Pim

December 16, 2006 10:08 PM  
Blogger NS said...

Pim: Thanks for adding the link, and no need to apologize -- I know how busy you've been with this campaign. My sincerest thanks to you for devising, organizing, leading and administering this critically important charity drive. It's already a rousing success, and it will be even more so by the time the donation period ends on Friday!

December 17, 2006 10:53 AM  

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