West Mt. Airy Neighbors (WMAN) finally spilled the details of their most attended fundraiser, and signup starts Friday.
For about seven years, the WMAN has put on Eat Your Hearts Out (EYHO)—an event starting as a cocktail party and ending with smaller, intimate dinners of about 12 people sprinkled across the neighborhood.
This year it will be take place on April 21 at 6 p.m., starting at the home of Mt. Airy resident Elise Singer on the 1000 block of Westview Street.
Natasha Larimer, WMAN co-chair for the event, said it’s a fundraiser that a lot of neighbors look forward to not only to support WMAN, but to share a good meal with old and new faces as well as see the inside of some beautiful Mt. Airy homes.
“The food keeps getting better and better, and the bar keeps getting higher and higher,” she said.”It’s a nice mix of regulars, and I think it attracts a lot of people who hear about how great this event.”
New chefs added to the mix
Larimer said this year there will be 16 dinner hosts, each with an individual chef. The night’s chefs range anywhere from your average Joe like Noel Eisenstat, who Larimer describes as a lawyer by day and chef by night, to local food trucks to restaurant chefs.
The food trucks, Larimer said, are a particularly new addition to the festivities. The owners of the two who will be cooking for Eat Your Hearts Out—Jonah Fliegelman of Pitruco Pizza and Andrew Gerson of Strada Pasta—are actually from Germantown and Mt. Airy.
“We have a lot of newcomers this year, but we’re also so thrilled to have some people who’ve cooked for us since the beginning of the event,” Larimer said, citing Eisenstat as one of those dedicated chefs, who will be preparing an Asian infusion dinner this year.
Preview of the Goat Hollow Tavern menu
Neil Campbell is a second-time chef at EYHO. He’s also a Mt. Airy resident and is re-opening Goat Hollow Tavern on W. Mt. Pleasant Avenue and using the event to allow community members to get to know him and the style of cooking for his new restaurant.
“The houses that we host at are usually such a great communal space and people end up hanging in the kitchen,” he said. “You’re not usually segregated from the guests as we might be in a restaurant kitchen.”
He added: “It’s a fun thing, this is such a community-centric idea.”
Allyson Katzman, a WMAN board member of four years and EYHO attendee of about seven years, is another one of the event’s dedicated attendees, but as both a guest and a host.
“I’ve been involved in one fashion or another since the beginning,” she said.
Katzman said she’s often learned more about her community each year, as well as expanded her networks within the community.
“I now know a lot more people within my community that when I see their events on different events, organizations or see them at the train station,” she said. “You might have to repeat chefs and hosts but the two are never matched up the same and you never have dinner with the same people.”
For Katzman, meeting new people and having good conversation is the draw of the event, whether she’s hosting of attending as a guest in someone else’s home.
“Any homeowner would go crazy setting the table and mowing the lawn but at the end of the day it’s all about people,” she said.
Signup will start Friday at wman.net The event is usually capped off at around 160 people, so it’s first come first serve.
Larimer said those signing up will be asked to pick from categories of things like comfort food, Italian, far East, old World European or Mediterranean. Vegetarian options will also be available.