James Beard Foundation Greens: An Evening at Mana Contemporary

Past JBF Greens Event

Jersey Bites is a proud media sponsor for this event.

James Beard Foundation Greens will host its first-ever New Jersey event on Thursday, October 20, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Mana Contemporary in Jersey City. The group, geared to foodies between the ages of 21 and 39, is part of the much larger James Beard Foundation, a non-profit culinary arts organization. (Additional membership info can be found here.)

The evening will include a walk-around tasting curated by JBF Greens and Mana Wine at Mana Contemporary. Guests will enjoy exciting art, exquisite wine tastings, beer, and plates from top New Jersey toques. Guided tours of select galleries will be provided, and bus travel from Manhattan is included.

I had an opportunity to interview Siobhan Flaherty Haber, director of Greens and special events, from the James Beard Foundation, about the inaugural New Jersey event. Here’s what she shared.

JERSEY BITES: Why did you select New Jersey for this event?

SIOBHAN FLAHERTY HABER: As we look to develop the reach of the Greens platform, New Jersey was the perfect place to start. New Jersey’s food scene has never been more vibrant, with a groundswell of innovative chefs and food purveyors. In addition, the Jersey suburbs—especially places like Jersey City and Hoboken—are incredibly dynamic and are home to a large population of creative and curious young professionals—just the audience we are hoping to engage with.

While we’re on the topic of Jersey City, why this destination for the event?

Jersey City has such a tremendous energy about it. When we considered the perfect destination in New Jersey, we knew we wanted something that was both easy to get to from New York City, where most of our members live, yet authentic and distinctive. Jersey City was a perfect fit. We felt that the food and drink scene here was not just burgeoning, but that restaurateurs and bars were really doing interesting and delicious things, delivering food and beverage programs with verve and committed to thoughtful sourcing.

And how did your collaboration with Mana begin?

Mana Wines / Mana Contemporary came to us with this incredible opportunity to partner and collaborate. We thought the venue and the marriage of food, wine and art—in a place like Jersey City, which is experiencing this spectacular renaissance was really exciting and appeal to our members. We’re thrilled this all came together so well and very grateful to the team at Mana—they’ve been awesome partners!

How did you go about selecting the participating chefs?

We chose the chefs by doing research—reading blogs, magazine articles, reviews and speaking to colleagues who live in the area. We looked for a variety in styles of food and also restaurants that would appeal to our under-40 audience.


Participating Chefs and Their Menus

Christopher Albrecht, The Ryland Inn, Whitehouse Station
King mackerel crudo with acorn squash, concord grapes, herb salad, black radish, pink peppercorns, and pumpkin seed oil
Duck confit arancini with red Russian kale, cipollini, local cheese, fried sage, and spiced apple cider reduction

Clémence Danko, Choc-O-Pain, Hoboken and Jersey City
Heaven flourless chocolate cake

Ryan DePersio, Kitchen Step and Battello, Jersey City
Truffle macaroni and cheese with herb-brown butter crumbs

Ruby Felix, Talde, Jersey City
Suman Sa Kawayan: bamboo-steamed sweet sticky rice with young coconut jam
Smoked arctic char sinigang

Michael Fiorianti, Satis Bistro, Jersey City
Bouillabaisse: market fish with lobster, fingerling potatoes, and saffron-tomato broth
Ricotta gnocchi wth escarole, white beans, and garlic

Anthony Pino, Bin 14, Hoboken
Braised rabbit with charred tomatoes and garganelli
Seared sea scallops with salsa verde and crispy chorizo

Julian Valencia, Ani Ramen, Montclair
Pork buns with kakuni, shredded cabbage, pickled cucumbers, scallions, and spicy miso mayonnaise

Featured Wines

  • Di Giovanna Grillo 2015
  • Di Giovanna Helios Rosso 2013
  • Di Giovanna Nerello Mascalese 2013
  • Di Giovanna Siciliani Nero d’Avola 2014
  • Domaine Faiveley Mercurey Rouge 2014
  • Hecht & Bannier Faugères 2012
  • Iconic Wine Secret Identity Rosé 2015
  • Iconic Wine Sidekick Cabernet Sauvignon 2014
  • Iconic Wine Sidekick Chardonnay 2014
  • JJ Vincent Crémant de Bourgogne Brut NV
  • Pascal Jolivet Sancerre 2015

More wines to be announced.

This event is a benefit for the James Beard Foundation’s culinary scholarship program and educational initiatives. Complete details can be found here.

About JBF Greens

JBF Greens is a diverse community of individuals between the age of 21 and 39 who share a passion for thoughtful food and beverage experiences. JBF created the Greens membership program to provide a platform for like-minded food lovers to join together. Held at numerous dynamic venues throughout the five boroughs, Greens events include wine tastings, multi-course dinners and the “From Scratch Sessions,” our series of hands-on cooking classes and demos.

Travel and Directions:

Mana Wine will provide luxury buses (beer and snacks served) departing from their sister company Milk Studios (450 West 15th Street). Buses will promptly leave at 6:10 p.m. Return rides will depart from Mana Contemporary at 9:00 p.m. and 9:15 p.m. back to Milk Studios. You MUST RSVP in advance to be on the bus. You can also take PATH train to Journal Square (10 to 15 min ride from the city) and take a 5-minute taxi to Mana Contemporary, or a 10-minute walk. Taxi or Uber is roughly $25 from Mana Contemporary to Manhattan.

For more information, please email greens@jamesbeard.org.

Thursday, October 20, 2016: 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Member Price: $60
Public Price: $75

Mana Contemporary
888 Newark Ave
Jersey City

Hope to see you there!