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Creative Risottos For Children’s Cancer Research Shine at The International Risotto Festival

HOUSTON, TX-  Purveyors of fine food, wine, fashion and design converged at The 11th International Risotto Festival which was held on Sunday, November 8 at The Houston Design Center. Chaired by Donae Cangelosi Chramosta and husband Rob Chramosta, this charitable event raised in excess of $100,000 for The Scarlett Fund. Eight year old Scarlett James , for whom The Scarlett Fund for Pediatric Cancer Research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center is named, attended along with parents Jennifer & Robert James. Ms. Chramosta’s parents, Nancy & Vito Cangelosi served as Honorary Chairs.

More than 800 guests strolled around the venue enjoying delicious Italian foods prepared by some of Houston’s top chefs along with Italian wines and live music.

The Risotto Festival hosted Rocco DiSpirito celebrity chef and author who acted as a Risotto judge along with the Honorable Consul General of Italy Elena Sgarbi, Consulate of Italy, Marina Acquista Lapuyade, Deputy Secretary General, Italy-America Chamber, Jon Buchannan, Ray Dennison, Phaedra Cook and Cleverley Stone.

Chef Justin Kouri with Recipe for Success won the day’s competition with his red beet risotto. Runner’s up of the blind tasting competition included Chef Maurizio Ferrarese, Quattro at The Four Seasons, Chef John Sikhattana, Straits Asian Bistro and Chef Scotty Campbell with Milestone Distributors.

Other top chefs who competed included Bart Black, Blacks Market Table, Charles Clark, Ibiza Food & Wine Bar, Ricky Cruz, Grotto, Carmelo Mauro, Carmelo’s, Greg Milo, The Art Institute, Mario Valdez, Oceanaire, Michael Pellegrino, The Tasting Room City Centre, Carlos Ramos, Latin Bites, Mark Riley, Erics Restaurant and Luigi Shimaj, Arcodoro.

Guests included, Shelby Kibodeaux & Bruce Padilla (Auction Chairs), Kim & Dan Moody, Alicia & Lance Smith, HDC’s Terry & Fred Baca, Janie & Todd Mason, Misty & Jeff Lindenberger, Sheri & Grant Roane, Lucinda & Javier Loya, Jenee & Nick Stefanakis, Maha Saeed Kahn, Jennifer & Huw Pierce, Mandy Kao, Karina & Carlos Barbieri, Adonia & Kevin Cokinos, Staci & Dr. Quang Henderson, Maria & Eduardo Morales, Kendra & Johnathon Phillips, Michael Pierce & Matt Burrus.

Sponsors of The 11th International Risotto Festival included Audi Central Houston, Alkusari Stone, Banfi Toscana, Cangelosi Stone, Charlotte Nail Antiques, Dauphin Sales, Design House, Inc., Derrick Equipment Company, Hotel Granduca, Icon Bank, Italian Cultural and Community Center, Kitchen & Bath Concepts, Lighting Treasures, LGI Oriental Rugs, MCM Worldwide, MLB Capital Partners, Modern Interiors Texas, The Motherhood Center, Palm Bay, Pelican Builders, Inc., Postmodern Traditions, Pride of Persia Rug Co., Prime Living, Republic Beverage, San Pellegrino/Acqua Panna, Republic Distributing Company, Tea and Coffee America, Teri Pugh Studio, Thorntree Slate & Marble, The Art Institute, The Vintage Contessa, Winebow, and Zonin.
Benefactors included Daltile, Jennifer and Robert James, HARVEY, Clay Commercial Design Builders, Ludlow & Associates, and The Kipling School.

The International Risotto Festival was founded in 2000 and has a rich history as a true culinary competition for a good cause. More than 60 of Houston’s finest chefs have competed to help raise more than a half million dollars for local charities in the 10 productions of the festival since that date.

For more information please visit www.risottofestival.com or call 713-864-2660.