By Cynthia Schuster-Eakin
Some of Northeast Ohio’s most talented chefs teamed up with the Cleveland Browns to raise awareness and funds for hungry families.
Taste of the Browns returned to Cleveland Browns Stadium on Sept. 10 to celebrate 14 years of tackling hunger. The 14th annual event is a major fundraiser for the Cleveland Foodbank, the area’s largest hunger relief organization.
This year’s event featured more than 25 food and beverage stations, with culinary creations from Amp 150, Fahrenheit, Momocho, Sushi Rock and the Greenhouse Tavern. Participants from the West Side included Deagan’s Kitchen and Bar, Georgetown, Johnny’s Bar on Fulton, Reddstone, Market Garden Brewery, Pearl of the Orient, Pier W, Players on Madison and The Melting Pot.
In addition to sampling some of the city’s best cuisine, those attending had an opportunity to meet and mingle with Cleveland Browns alumni and current players. Honorary co-chairmen of the event were former Cleveland Browns defensive lineman Al “Bubba” Baker, now owner of Bubba’s Q restaurant, and current Cleveland Browns offensive lineman Joe Thomas. Baker raffled off a catered tailgate party for 30 people from his restaurant, to be personally delivered. Other auction items included a suite for 10 people at the Browns versus Bengals game, autographed Cleveland Browns memorabilia and a variety of dining packages.
The Foodbank’s goal for the evening was to raise $159,000, which would provide more than 636,000 meals. “Every dollar raised at the Taste of the Browns will help the Cleveland Foodbank provide enough food for four nutritious meals for struggling men, women and children in our community,” Foodbank President Anne Goodman said. “Right here in Northeast Ohio, the number of people turning to hunger centers is continuing to grow. Poverty rates are at an all-time high, with one in five Ohio families struggling to put food on the table.”
“There are too many people who too often go without food,” Al “Bubba” Baker said. “Taste of the Browns is a shining example of how Northeast Ohioans can combine their passions for food and football to benefit those in need.”