Capital Food Fight Raises $815,000 for DC-Area Job Training and More

This year’s Capital Food Fight brought together over 2,000 guests, 80 tasting restaurants and live on-stage entertainment at The Anthem.

Battling chefs were asked to create dishes using secret ingredients ranging from Simply Seasoned Plant-Based Protein Starters presented by Pure Farmland, a Smithfield Foods brand, Stokes Purple® sweet potatoes, presented by Keany Produce and Gourmet and Frieda’s Specialty Produce, and Global Animal Partnership Rated Dry Aged Tomahawk Steak presented by Whole Foods Market.

In a nod to DC’s mixology scene, guests voted in the People’s Choice Mixology Competition, sponsored by Beam Suntory. Six mixologists poured specialty cocktails before Sophie Szych of Quill was named the 2019 People’s Choice winner for her creation, “Knobbing for Apples” prepared with Knob Creek Rye.

Nationally recognized celebrities came out in full force for the 16th year of this year’s event. This year’s judges included Tom Colicchio (Bravo’s “Top Chef”), Ryan Zimmerman (Washington Nationals), Andrew Zimmern (“Bizarre Foods” with Andrew Zimmern), and Maneet Chauhan (celebrity chef and restaurateur). José Andrés, Carla Hall, and Spike Mendelsohn co-hosted the annual event.

The night raised over $815,000 for DC Central Kitchen to continue its work fighting hunger differently in the nation’s capital, including generous donations made during the event and a special matching challenge from Stand Together Foundation.

DC Central Kitchen earns more than half of its annual budget through social enterprise ventures that are powered and led by graduates of the organization’s acclaimed Culinary Job Training program for adults who have faced barriers to employment. The rest of DC Central Kitchen’s budget is secured through charitable fundraising efforts including the Capital Food Fight.

Chef Marcelle Afram of Bluejacket Wins DC Central Kitchen’s Capital Food Fight. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for DC Central Kitchen)

For a full listing of all Capital Food Fight tasting restaurants, competitors, hosts and judges, please visit

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