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Harlem Uplifted at the 3rd Annual Harlem EatUp! Festival

Posted May 25, 2017

May 20th marked the beginning of the 3rd annual Harlem Eatup! Festival. The event presents an exciting 2-day dining extravaganza held in Morningside Park, Central Harlem. Multi-cultural and talented chefs come together to celebrate cuisines that explore the multitude of flavors found in Harlem.  Founded by Marcus Samuelsson and Herb Karlitz, the festival awards chefs from all over the world, a chance to be a part of an event which celebrates food, community and the spirit that is Harlem. Displays of Harlem art and culture with performances by local musicians and artists intermixed with stations of culinary offerings and wine tastings all contributing to a festive atmosphere.

The Market Place at the festival allows free admission for guests to view and support local businesses. Entrepreneur, Rachel Stewart, founded “Beauty in the Kitchen” in 2013, where she offers gourmet desserts and caters to events with the help of her mother and aunt.  Another sweet shop at the festival, “Lady Lexis Sweets”, also specializes in the catering business. Created by Lexis Dilligard, Lady Lexis Sweets offers not only desserts but selective gourmet dishes. The Market Place also featured visual art from food portrait artist, Andrea Nally, creator of Nally fine art. Nally offers breathtakingly flawless paintings of everyday foods, turning a simple PB&J sandwich into a beautiful painting. The festival focused not only on food but also shined a light on uplifting black communities. Aleathia Brown creates beautiful and inspiring paintings that feature art from Black and African history. While art company, “Art in Vivid Color” featured the beauty of spirituality and love within black families.

The EatUp! Mainstage, however, was an audience favorite. Culinary demonstrations by Karl Franz Williams, Lorenzo Boni, Darryl Burnette, Roger Mooking and co-founder Samuelsson, lit up the stage. The talented culinary team offered prizes and a chance to cook with a few of the master chefs, making this moment a highlight of the day.

The Ultimate Grand Tastings at The Harlem Stroll topped off the event activities by exclusive access to Harlem’s best culinary artists and unlimited tastings. Here, in a chic atmosphere, guests enjoyed unlimited alcoholic beverages and even attended wine classes from Bordeaux Wine. Big time fast food favorites like Shake Shack showed support by attending and revealing that they will be opening near 116th and Broadway, featuring collaborations with Harlem’s own “Make My Cake”. The Grand Tasting also showcased smaller business on the rise located in Harlem, like Harlem Chocolate Factory and Harlem Haberdashery, a men and women clothing line, with a goal to help take care of Harlem.

The Harlem Eatup! Festival has proven to be an event of opportunity to help build up small businesses and communities in Harlem. Samuelsson expresses “Harlem Eatup gives young food entrepreneurs the exposure.” The festival not only brings guests from all over the country but strengthens and empowers the Harlem community, leaving a significant impact on the community and its guests.

Contributed to HarlemOnestop by Kibin


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