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Table for Ten draws area’s top chefs, raises more than $300,000 for Pascal Culinary Scholarship Program

Table for Ten, orchestrated annually by Kristin Martin and KM Productions for deserving non-profits, held its 16th annual culinary extravaganza at the Festival of Arts/Pageant of the Masters grounds on Sunday, March 6. More than 300 gourmet food and wine lovers attended the sold-out event, with guests enjoying scrumptious multi-courses tableside from 30 talented chefs, along with superb wine pairings and tables uniquely decorated by each restaurant.

Table for Ten Pascal trio

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Photos by Tony Lattimore

(L-R) Table for Ten Venue Host Chef Donald Lockhart (Terra Restaurant), Event Chair Chef Pascal Olhats (Pascal Cuisine Catering) and Honorary Chef Ugo Allesina (Prego Restaurant)

A tempting silent auction was held during a reception prior to dinner on the Festival grounds that featured area chefs and wineries offering hors d’oeuvres and premium wines. The 52-bottle Bottle Shock Wine Tree opportunity drawing drew brisk ticket sales, with the winning ticket going to Dave Hoff. His wife, Traci Hoff, was the winner of the Heads or Tails game $500 prize – a very lucky couple! Supporter and wine connoisseur Mona Lee Nesseth donated the wines, valued at $4,000.

Table for Ten Nesseth duo

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Bottle Shock Wine Tree underwriter Mona Lee Nesseth with George Rozsahegyi

The event’s Honorary Chef, Ugo Allesina of Prego Restaurant, was honored by Pascal Olhats, the event’s Chef Scholarship Chair, whose culinary scholarship program was the recipient of the evening’s proceeds. He lauded Allesina for his culinary skills as well as giving his time and energy to a multitude of charitable causes in Orange County for many years.

Table for Ten Montage chefs

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(L-R) Montage Laguna Beach Chefs David Serus and Ben Martinek

Table for Ten Fougeray

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Chef Ron Fougeray of Splashes at the Surf & Sand Resort 

Table for Ten St. John

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Chef Kyle St. John of The Ranch Laguna Beach 

Among the 30 participating Orange County chefs were Laguna Beach’s Chef David Serus and Chef Ben Martinek of Montage Laguna Beach; Chef Ron Fougeray of Splashes at Surf and Sand Resort; Chef Kyle St. John, The Ranch Laguna Beach and Chef Peter Moon of Seabutter restaurant. Among the Cocktail Reception hosts was Donald Lockhart of Terra Laguna Beach.

The live auction, led by spirited auctioneer DawnMarie Kotsonis, once again showcased an overnight villa stay at Pelican Hill Resort, including spa treatments, golf and a chef’s dinner for 10, as well as dinners offered by participating chefs in the winners’ homes. Included were Ugo Allesina of Prego Restaurant, Chris Tzorin of Taste Collective, Brandon Hall of Thyme Well Spent Catering and Jonathan Stanley of Dana Point Yacht Club.

Table for Ten Oswalds

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Kimberly and Daryl Oswald of Laguna Beach

The designated charity this year was the Pascal Culinary Scholarship Program, which creates grants for culinary arts students in Orange County. The program works with Saddleback Culinary Arts College, Orange Coast College Culinary School and chefs currently working who would like to go back and further their culinary arts dreams. Olhats, who launched the program, said, “The scholarships provide monies to offset or cover the students’ tuition, fees, books and equipment. The college foundations select the recipients based on need and merit.”

Table for Ten Seabutter

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The Seabutter restaurant table with Chef Peter Moon

Towards that end, Table for Ten netted more than $300,000, which will provide grants to deserving culinary arts students through the Pascal Culinary Scholarship Program.