benefit season

Summer on the East End is about food (and the beach or biking or whatever you do when you’re not eating, shopping for food or making a reservation), and the bloom of food festivals is evidence.

This trend also inspired the inaugural Dan’s Taste of Two Forks, a food and wine event to benefit local food pantries through Have a Heart Community Trust. Put on by Dan’s Papers and to be hosted by chef Marcus Samuelson—the multinational kitchen whiz formerly of Aquavit and now of the Red Rooster in Harlem—the event will be held on July 16 at Sayre Park on Snake Hollow Road in Bridgehampton.

Two tiers of tickets are on sale. For $225, VIP tickets admit guests at 6:30 p.m., when they will have more room to roam the tents where local restaurants, breweries and wineries will be serving food and drink and to participate in a sparkling wine toast. Tickets for $175 will permit guests to enter at 7:30 p.m. and stay until the event ends at 10:00 p.m. Both can be purchased at

So far more then 40 restaurants have signed up, an impressive roster of regional chefs that includes Sam McLeland of the Beacon in Sag Harbor, Starr Boggs from Westhampton and Noah Schwartz from Noah’s in Greenport. Many of the East End wineries are expected, as only East End wine will be served. Organizers, including Manhattan Media, the new owner of Dan’s, and Don Evans, restaurant committee chairman and owner of Compass restaurant on the Upper West Side, thought it was time to start a festival that encompassed both the North and South Forks, says Mary Blanton, a spokesperson for the event. “It’s going to be a blast,” she says. “It’s going to be a party.”