Food nonprofit expands to Dallas to help with restaurant recovery

A longstanding Austin-based charity that raises grant money for food industry professionals is moving into Dallas as part of a statewide expansion.

The Austin Food & Wine Alliance, which provides financial support to the culinary community through fundraising events like Wine & Swine, will now fall under the umbrella of the newly formed Texas Food & Wine alliance in order to support pandemic recovery efforts across Texas’ restaurant industry.

Miriam Parker, executive director of the Austin Food & Wine Alliance and now the Texas Food & Wine Alliance, said it may seem like an unusual time to grow an organization, but the crisis created even more of a need for such fundraising efforts.

“The pandemic has brought unprecedented challenges to the Texas hospitality industry and it will take many years for full recovery,” Parker said in a statement. “There is no greater time than now to fortify, to showcase, and to support the breadth of Texas talent, culinary businesses, and nonprofits.”

The Dallas Food & Wine Alliance will be part of the organization’s broader efforts to support education and innovation within the industry. In-person events won’t be held until 2021, but in the meantime, the alliance announced that it is launching an online cooking experience that will be available starting Sept. 17.

Chefs and mixologists from around the state will be featured in episodes on all things Texas cuisine and participate in live Q&A sessions with viewers. Accompanying ingredients kits will be available for purchase for each online class so that people can cook and mix drinks alongside the experts from their own homes.

Dallas’ own Matt McCallister, executive chef and co-founder of Homewood, will be one of the chefs featured in an upcoming episode.

Other chefs featured in future episodes are Edgar Rico and Sarah Mardanbigi, owners of Nixta Taqueria in Austin, Phillip Speer of Comedor in Austin, and Anita Jaisinghani of Pondicheri in Houston.

For more information, visit dallasfoodandwinealliance.org.

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