MANATEE COUNTY — Whether you like to see how other people live, have a passion for food and fine wines or simply want to support education, Manatee Technical Institutes’ newest fundraiser is sure to please in every occasion.
The MTI Foundation, a public charity that provides scholarships to students, will host its inaugural Showcase of Kitchens event from 2-6 p.m., March 7. During the showcase, participants will visit five East County homes, where they will be served a carefully selected wine and a signature dish by chefs from local restaurants such as The Polo Grill and Bar, Stingrays Grill, The Sun House Restaurant and the Anna Maria Oyster Bar.
The finishing touch will be a stop at MTI’s Lakewood Ranch campus, where MTI chef instructor Dana Johnson, formerly the Longboat Key Club assistant pastry chef, and his students will serve desserts such as dark chocolate mousse swans, blackberry and lemon vacherins, triple chocolate bread pudding and coconut frangipane cake.
“It’s going to be a really fun event,” said Maura Howl, grants and public relations specialist for MTI. “There’re some tours of homes and things, but to actually bring people to a home and have chefs from local area restaurants with their signature dishes — that’s a new twist on the idea.”
Campus tours will be available during that time as well.
Tickets cost $50 each, but a VIP limousine package also is available for $800.
Food offerings will include items such as minced chicken and lettuce wraps, Asian shrimp skewers, crab cakes, pork sliders with guava and barbecue and papaya slaw and short ribs with a black-eyed pea risotto.
MTI officials are hoping to sell at least 350 tickets for the event. Howl said proceeds will help the foundation provide scholarships to students who may need financial assistance but do not qualify for other financial aid.
“At a time when schools, at least our school, is at low funding from a state level, we have to do everything we can to raise money to support our students,” Howl said.
Howl said the foundation’s board is eager to see the event come to fruition and to grow in popularity.
“We’re hoping this will be our signature event for years to come, and we’re looking for a super inaugural event on March 7,” she said.
Individuals wishing to attend the showcase should pre-order tickets by March 1. A ticket booklet, which will include the addresses for homes in the showcase among other information, will be mailed to participants. For individuals who miss the March 1 deadline, tickets also will be available at MTI through March 5.
Contact Pam Eubanks at [email protected].
SHOWCASE OF KITCHENS
WHEN: 2-6 p.m., March 7
WHERE: Five East County homes and MTI’s Lakewood Ranch campus. Exact addresses will be included on tickets
COST: $50 per person; There also is a VIP limousine package for $800
INCLUDES: A signature dish from a local restaurant and a wine pairing at each of the homes, followed by a sampling of gourmet desserts at MTI. School tours also will be available.
DEADLINE: Ticket orders must be received by March 1 so they can be mailed; however, interested parties will be able to pick up tickets at MTI through March 5.
TICKETS: Heather Humphrey, [email protected] or 751-7900, Ext. 2243.