The Foodshed Alliance is holding its third annual Gala on Thursday, May 16, 2019, at Perona Farms in Andover to support its work to strengthen sustainable farming, increase access to local, healthy food, and protect the environment. (

The event will feature 17 tasting stations of appetizers, main courses and desserts created with the finest local ingredients prepared before gala guests by 17 of region’s finest chefs, who will entertain and inform with cooking techniques and tips. Chefs include:

  • Kirk Avondoglio, Perona Farms
  • Mike Carrino, Pig and Prince Gastro Lounge
  • Andre de Waal, Andres Lakeside Dining
  • Jennifer DeChristopher, Silver Birch Kitchen
  • Ben Del Coro, Fossil Farms
  • Jessica Genoules, Silver Birch Kitchen
  • Brandon Grimila, Fauchere Hospitality
  • Jacob Hunt, Windy  Brow Farm and Cafe
  • Jesse Jones, Chef Jesse LIVE!
  • Eric LeVine, Mr. Crabby’s Craft Kitchen
  • George Mandakas, Aramark at Fordham University-Lincoln Center
  • Dan Rothman, Foragers Market
  • Stefan Sabo, Grain & Cane
  • John Sauchelli, Fiddlers Elbow Country Club
  • Tim “The Brew Chef” Schafer, Brew Chefs Culinary Concepts
  • Bill Van Pelt, James on Main
  • Florian Wehrli, The Vine-NYC

An open bar will feature wines, craft beer, and spirits. Live music will be provided by the legendary Grover Kemble Trio.

At the Gala, the Foodshed Alliance will honor three individuals for their tireless work in strengthening the local food system and supporting the Foodshed Alliance.

John Krueger, Farmer of the Year. John Krueger owns and operates Circle Brook Farm, a certified organic farm in Andover, NJ. Committed to providing the best organic produce to his customers, John is also one of the most generous supporters of the Foodshed Alliance’s LocalShare program. Each season, he allows our volunteers to glean thousands of pounds of excess produce which is delivered to food pantries to feed those in need.

Eric Olsen, Partner of the Year. Eric Olsen has worked for The Nature Conservancy in New Jersey since 2006 and currently serves as the Director of the Lands Program. In this role, working with a team of four, he oversees land protection, land management and land policy work for the Chapter. Over the last two years, Eric has been working closely with the Foodshed Alliance to design the Sustainable Agriculture Enterprise (SaGE) program to provide farmers access to preserved farmland at affordable cost.

Michael Carrino, Volunteer of the Year. Michael Carrino, chef and owner of Pig & Prince Restaurant in Montclair, and creator of the renowned French restaurant, Passionné, is considered by many to be a pillar of the culinary world, and staple of the NJ restaurant scene. He is also one of the first volunteers for the Foodshed Alliance, having volunteered his time as chef for our first Farm-to-Fork dinner in 2010. Since then, he has said “yes” every time we have invited him to cook at our fundraising events.

The evening will also feature a silent auction showcasing unique, exceptional and special gifts to amplify the celebration of regional foods and local farms and a raffle of a wheel barrow of cheer.

Proceeds will support the Foodshed Alliance’s work connecting food, farms and the environment to rebuild our local food economy. Please visit, call 908-652-1866 or email to reserve your $125 seat and experience the very best the Garden State has to offer. Seating is limited.

Perona Farm is located at 350 Andover-Sparta Road, Andover, NJ 07821.  The event begins at 6 p.m.