Talk It Up

Food News: Fundraiser Gives People the Chance to Chat With a Chef

Plus, an NBA hall of famer was spotted getting some grub at Jax Grill.

By Timothy Malcolm July 23, 2020

A fundraiser focusing on supporting immigrant hospitality workers affected by COVID-19 gives people a chance to have 30-minute Zoom chats with local chefs and celebrities. Ask Chefs Anything, a campaign founded by consultants Gaeleen Quinn of Q&A Hospitality and Anna Polonsky of Polonsky and Friends, has already rolled out in New York, Los Angeles, Dallas, Nashville, and other locations across the country. For the Houston edition, Ask Chefs Anything has partnered with the Southern Smoke Foundation, which will earmark all funds raised for immigrant workers impacted by the pandemic.

The list of participating chefs is long and includes James Beard award winners Chris Shepherd, Hugo Ortega, and Justin Yu; plus Chris Cosentino (owner of Rosalie), Ronnie Killen, Christine Ha (The Blind Goat), current Beard nominee Anita Jaisinghani, and celebrity chef Andrew Zimmern. Non-kitchen celebrities and personalities include rapper Bun B and Food & Wine magazine executive editor Ray Isle.

You can start bidding on your chance to have a 30-minute call with your favorite chef or personality between Thursday and Sunday. Go here to access the auction.

Shaquille O'Neal with the Jax Grill team. According to a representative, the workers removed their face masks for the photograph only.

Image: Kenneth Miles

NBA legend Shaquille O'Neal was recently honored with a humanitarian award at a food distribution site at NRG Center. On Monday the co-host of TNT's Inside the NBA was spotted getting dinner at Jax Grill on Shepherd Drive with friend and Houston police officer Kenneth Miles.

Meanwhile, catch Tacos A Go-Go on the Cooking Channel's Food Paradise. The episode airs 8 p.m. Wednesday, and to mark the appearance, the restaurant will be offering a discount on family packs. Get tacos; chips and salsa; rice and beans; sopapillas; and a half-gallon of margaritas for $59.99.

A team of five University of Houston students, with assistance from Alex Bregman, Bun B, and Paul Wall, created a new t-shirt whose sales will benefit the Houston Food Bank. The students, part of UH's Program for Excellence in Selling, are taking part in this summer's serveHOU Initiative, which was created from third-party funding after summer internships were cut. For serveHOU students are split into teams and asked to develop strategies that can help local nonprofits. You can buy your t-shirt, which was designed by artist Mike Frost, here.

Raz Halili, president of Prestige Oysters, will open Pier 6 Seafood & Oyster House in San Leon. Pier 6 will focus its menu on a "tide-to-table" offerings featuring Gulf Coast seafood. Get crudos, seafood towers, and oysters on the hall shell, plus fish dinners and other seafood delights. Joe Cervantez, previously executive chef at Brennan's of Houston, will lead the kitchen at Pier 6. The restaurant will have a 5,000-square-foot dining room and 2,250-square-foot patio lounge, and it plans to open sometime around the fall.

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