Though Monterey, California is an idyllic travel destination throughout the year, for one weekend this May it will become a hot spot of the culinary industry. From Friday, May 17 through Sunday May 19, the waterside city plays host to Cooking for Solutions, an event that is described as no less than a “grand culinary celebration.”
Held at the scenic Monterey Bay Aquarium, Cooking for Solutions is not simply a time to indulge in haute cuisine; its true mission is to showcase sustainability in all its forms throughout the food industry. Featuring an impressive line-up of celebrity chefs—including former Top Chef contestants (and host of Blais Off and co-host of ABC’s The Chew respectively) Richard Blais and Carla Hall—as well as representatives from over 90 restaurants nationwide and more than 60 wineries, breweries and other beverage companies, the event should have no trouble achieving its goal.
Each of Cooking for Solutions’ three days is packed with activities and social functions. For instance, Friday features a lecture entitled “Amuse-Bouche,” which will be a conversation between Los Angeles Times Food Editor, Russ Parsons, and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, who is a chef, journalist and the founder of River Cottage—a small farm that has “grown into a cooking school, restaurant and home to a variety of projects focused on self-reliance, food integrity and the consumption of local, seasonal produce.”
Meanwhile, on Saturday, you can start the day by learning about the groundbreaking techniques that San Francisco’s TCHO are using as they attempt to redefine the way that we taste chocolate. Then, later, you can listen to a lecture by Michael Passmore (of Passmore Ranch) who will explain how aquaculture can be environmentally friendly, which will then be followed by a cooking demonstration from Chef Jeff Rogers (Executive Chef at Monterey Bay Aquarium) who will cook three simple recipes using different types of fish that have been raised at the Passmore Ranch.
Finally, Sunday features the all-day Sustainable Foods Celebration, which is centered around the Whole Foods Marketplace & Kids’ Zone and will feature informative “talk and taste” demonstrations with a variety of culinary experts—all on the Aquarium’s ocean-view deck.
For those savvy in the ins-and-outs of sustainability and for those just looking to become more informed about the way they enjoy and experience food, Cooking for Solutions is simply an event that can not be missed. And the Pacific views aren’t bad either.