Eating to End Hunger
Chefs, who devote their lives to feeding people, are deeply concerned about those who go hungry in the United States. Each year, New Orleans chefs raise money to end hunger by donating their food and their time to the Taste of the Nation (www.sosneworleans.com). Since 1988, Taste of the Nation has raised more than $400,000 to fight hunger in Louisiana, where 12.3 percent of households lack access to enough food for a healthy lifestyle. This year's event benefits Bread for the World, Healthy Lifestyle Choices, the Crescent City's Farmers Market and the Second Harvest Food Bank of New Orleans and Acadiana. At the event, 25 chefs from some of New Orleans' top restaurants, including Dickie Brennan's Steakhouse (716 Iberville St., 522-2467; www.dickiebrennanssteakhouse.com), New Orleans Grill (300 Gravier St., 522-1992; www.windsorcourthotel.com) and Rene Bistrot (817 Common St., 412-2580; www.renebistrot.com), serve tasting-size portions of their dishes with complimentary wine and cocktails. Taste of the Nation takes place from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 7, at the Astor Crown Plaza Hotel (739 Canal St., 962-0500; www.astorcrowneplaza.com). Tickets are $60 in advance and $70 at the door. Call 701-7539 for advance tickets. All of the ticket price benefits anti-hunger efforts.
William "Smoky" Greenwell , the leader of the Bad Apples Blues Band, hails from Michigan, not Brazil. His Brazilian-born bass player, however, introduced Smoky to cuisine of Brazil. When the harmonica player recently opened Bossa Nova (606 Frenchmen St., 944-4744), his new club and restaurant, he hired a Brazilian chef for the kitchen. The food of Brazil has more of an African influence than other Latin American cuisines. Smoky particularly recommends moqueca, a shrimp stew with coconut and red palm oil. Bossa Nova, which used to house Cafe Negril, has the feel of a Brazilian beach hut. The music, however, ranges from blues to samba to traditional jazz.
Slam Dunk a
Dining Fans of the Green Wave might remember Rodnelle Hadley as a former assistant coach for the Tulane women's basketball team. She recently traded the court for a kitchen and opened Station 8801 (8801 Oak St., 861-9293), a new restaurant located in a former service station. Hadley's uncle owned Hadley's in Elmwood, and she tried to recreate the spirit of that restaurant. The menu features burgers, fillet sandwiches and Mrs. Wheat's meat pies. Although the restaurant has a 50-inch plasma television, Hadley describes Station 8801 as more of a grill than a sports bar. The walls are decorated with black-and-white photos of old gas stations. Hadley is still searching for a photo of her building, however, and asks anyone with an image of the old Gulf station on Oak Street to give her a call.