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PBS Chef Vivian Howard to come to Syracuse for WCNY’s 4th annual Taste of Fame event Nov. 8, Chef Richard Blais returns as Emcee

WCNY, Central New York’s flagship public broadcaster, announced its 4th annual Taste of Fame fundraising dinner experience will feature Chef, Television Host, Cookbook Author, and Restaurateur Vivian Howard. Howard earned a coveted James Beard Award for Outstanding Personality/Host in 2016, and most recently a Daytime Emmy® for Outstanding Culinary Program in April 2018. Chef Richard Blais returns to Taste of Fame as Emcee as Vivian delights guests with stories and sensational cuisine.

The award-winning 4th annual Taste of Fame event takes place at 6:15 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8 at the Oncenter, 800 S. State St. Syracuse, NY 13202. Prior to the dinner, a TV recording event with Chef Vivian Howard and Chef Richard Blais takes place at the WCNY TV Studios, 415 W. Fayette St. in Syracuse at 4:15 p.m. The Experience Ticket features a Meet and Greet Lunch the following day, Friday, Nov. 9. Proceeds from Taste of Fame benefit WCNY’s programs and services.

An early bird ticket discount of 20 percent off is available for WCNY Members on the Dinner and VIP Tickets through July 22. For more information, visit wcny.org/tasteoffame.

“WCNY is thrilled to bring the culinary talents of Chef Vivian Howard to Central New York for this year’s Taste of Fame,” said Robert J. Daino, WCNY President & CEO. “It’s especially exciting to feature a Chef whose PBS television show just won a Daytime Emmy® for Outstanding Culinary Program! Our guests this year are in for a real treat as Vivian takes us on a journey with great food and stories.”

All About Vivian Howard

Born in Deep Run, NC to tobacco and hog farming parents, Vivian Howard learned early on to appreciate the ebb and flow of eating with the seasons. Still, it took 23 years and a start in the advertising business to convince her a career in food was feasible. After college, Vivian moved to New York for work, but found the city’s food and restaurant scene far more intriguing. A server position at Greenwich Village’s Voyage made it possible for her to begin training under the restaurant’s chef Scott Barton. She went on to learn from creative cutting-edge chefs Wylie Dufresne and Sam Mason at WD 50 and later, joined the opening team at Jean Georges Vongerichten’s critically acclaimed Spice Market.

In 2005, Vivian, and her now husband, Ben Knight decided to return to Vivian’s roots to open a “farm to fork” restaurant in the small town of Kinston, NC. They opened Chef & the Farmer in the summer of 2006 serving local, seasonal, creative cuisine. Vivian and her restaurant have won numerous accolades, including her selection as a five-time James Beard Foundation Award semi finalist for Best Chef: Southeast . She also owns and operates a second restaurant right across the street from Chef & the Farmer – The Boiler Room.

In 2012, Vivian approached her childhood neighbor turned filmmaker, Cynthia Hill, about directing a documentary film series about Eastern North Carolina’s food traditions. Five years later, the two women have produced five seasons of “A Chef’s Life,” a PBS series that celebrates family, work and food. In its first two seasons, “A Chef’s Life” won a Peabody Award and a Daytime Emmy. In 2016, Vivian earned a coveted James Beard Award for Outstanding Personality/Host. In April 2018 the show won a Daytime Emmy® for Outstanding Culinary Program.

In October 2016, Vivian released her first ever cookbook – Deep Run Roots: Stories and Recipes from My Corner of the South – published by Little, Brown & Co. The cookbook is Vivian’s comprehensive record of modern Southern cooking, filled with stories and more than 200 recipes that celebrate the flavors of her eastern North Carolina home. The cookbook was nominated for a James Beard Award for the American Cooking category and was named ‘Cookbook of the Year’ by the International Association of Culinary Professionals. Recently, Deep Run Roots was selected as the winner of the 2017 Southern Book Prize for the Nonfiction – Cooking category.

Vivian expanded her brand with two new establishments. In fall 2017, she opened her first restaurant outside of Kinston, Benny’s Big Time Pizzeria in Wilmington, NC. In early 2018, she opened Handy & Hot, a bakery in Kinston located on the same block as her existing two restaurants.

 

THREE TICKET OPTIONS | For tickets, visit wcny.org/tasteoffame or call (315) 453-2424.

 

Vivian Howard Experience Ticket

$400 / Ticket

Enjoy everything Taste of Fame with this exclusive ticket featuring transportation, a VIP Studio Soirée champagne meet-and-greet with Vivian and Richard, In-Studio TV Recording with Vivian and Richard, cocktails, silent auction, a guided four-course culinary dinner journey with recipes crafted by Vivian, preferred seating, the best in Finger Lakes wine, a professional photo with Vivian, and a Foodie Swag Bag. Plus, a Meet and Greet lunch, and a personally signed copy of Vivian’s cookbook.

VIP TICKET

$250 / Ticket

EARLY BIRD DISCOUNT for WCNY Members ($200, 20% off)

Join WCNY, Vivian, and Richard for a VIP Studio Soirée champagne meet-and-greet, In-Studio TV Recording with Vivian and Richard, cocktails, silent auction, a guided four-course culinary dinner journey with recipes crafted by Vivian, preferred seating, a signed copy of Vivian’s new cookbook, and a professional photo with Vivian. The best in Finger Lakes wine accompanies each course.

DINNER TICKET

$150 / Ticket

EARLY BIRD DISCOUNT for WCNY Members ($120, 20% off)

It’s all about food with the Taste of Fame Dinner Ticket. Guests will enjoy cocktails, silent auction, and a guided four-course culinary dinner journey with recipes crafted by Vivian. The best in Finger Lakes wine accompanies each course.

GROUP TABLES

Table $1,500

Enjoy cocktails, the silent auction, and reserved seating for 10 at the dinner.

VIP Table $2,500

Includes preferred seating for 10 at the dinner and VIP Ticket benefits.

 

 

 

SPECIAL EVENT FEATURES

  1. The Vivian Howard Experience Ticket features a Meet and Greet Lunch the following day. Other “Experience” highlights include transportation, a TV Recording Event with preferred seating, a professional photo with Vivian, and Foodie Swag Bag. Tickets vary in prices and are available online at wcny.org/tasteoffame or by calling (315) 453-2424.
  2. Chef Richard Blais returns to Taste of Fame as Emcee.

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Haley Dubnoff

Director, Marketing, Communications & Creative Services

WCNY

415 W. Fayette St.

Syracuse, NY 13204

(315) 385-7317

haley.dubnoff@wcny.org

www.wcny.org

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