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Anthony Bourdain Wine Dinner

On a peaceful summer night in June—the time of year when sunny days give way to cooler nights and people wandering down the sidewalks are simply excited to be past the abrasive days of winter—Mallebar a Modern French Brasserie in Plymouth hosted a wine dinner in celebration of the life and legacy of Anthony Bourdain. “How can you not be inspired by him,” says Mallebar co-owner Heather Ritchie Casey on the choice to focus the night on Bourdain. “He was such a unique, moving person with an interesting story. We watched a lot of his shows and read a lot about him leading up to the dinner. Everyone feels like they knew him, and the amazing thing was that whether you did know him personally or from television, that’s truly who he was. His death really hit hard.”

Casey explains coming up with a plan for the wine dinner: “Last summer, we were able to get this incredible painting of Bourdain done by Robert Green,” she says. “It gets such a great reaction and people just gravitate toward it. So he’s been looking over us for about a year now, and that painting set the stage for this dinner.”

In true tribute to his memory, the theme of the night was punk rock. Proceeds, which totaled over $7,000, went to benefit local suicide prevention efforts by the Plymouth County Suicide Prevention Coalition. “It’s important to us to support local charities,” says Casey, who is also an avid supporter of The Home for Little Wanderers in Plymouth. “Sometimes causes like that just speak to you, and we like to advocate for people that we know and work with every day.” Casey garnered a list of 12 of Bourdain’s favorite meals from restaurants around the world and used that as the inspiration for the night’s dishes, prepared by eight local chefs who added their own creative spin. The guest chefs came together to create signature dishes, and as each of them took charge of the kitchen, the other seven gathered to help plate and put finishing touches on each other’s dishes—a collaborative effort that would have made Bourdain proud to see so many people and professionals from different walks of life being brought together by food. “We’re friends with all the chefs,” says Casey, “and Plymouth is such a tight community, particularly in the food industry, so we really try to help each other out.”

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