Michael Symon and Bobby Flay Team up to Host Autism Speaks Chefs Gala


  • Courtesy Food Network
Since accepting hosting duties of the biennial Autism Speaks Chefs Gala, Michael Symon has managed to improve an already extraordinary event. His next opportunity to do so will take place at the Cleveland Convention Center, Grand Ballroom (300 Lakeside Ave. E.) on Saturday, August 6. The glitzy culinary fundraiser benefits Autism Speaks, the world’s leading autism science and advocacy organization.

Autism is a cause near and dear to Symon’s heart.

“This is an event that means so much to me as it has affected those that I am close to and love,” Symon says. “To be able to be part of this great fundraiser is incredibly special.”

Co-hosting this year’s event is Symon’s Food Network colleague Bobby Flay. The two Iron Chefs will prepare a live and interactive dinner on stage in the open kitchen while entertaining the crowds. In years past, only those guests with special (and pricy) tickets enjoyed seats, but thanks to the larger setting (the last event was held in the atrium of the Cleveland Museum of Art) every guest will have a seat. Sponsors who pony up $1,000 and higher will enjoy a full-service plated dinner with open bar, while those with individual tasting tickets ($250) will receive general admission seating with family style dinner and two drink tickets.

For this year’s event, the organizers are going bigger, bolder and longer than any previous year, says co-chair Jim Sammon.

“Building on the expansion of Cleveland’s great culinary scene, we’ve been blessed to have several more Cleveland chef volunteers this year, bringing the total amount to just about 30,” Sammon explains. “Now add America’s first Iron Chef Bobby Flay, as well as Cleveland’s favorite Iron Chef Michael Symon as our host and this makes it the premiere culinary event of the year.”

See the full list of participating chefs below.

This year’s event will honor Shari and Michael Goldberg for a decade of service in the Greater Cleveland Autism community. The two were instrumental in establishing the Ohio Chapter of Autism Speaks over 10 years ago.

For more info, including ticket sales, click here.

Tim Bando - Grove Hill
Terry Bell – Cleveland Cavaliers
Jonathan Bennett - Moxie the Restaurant, Red the Steakhouse
Jim Blevins - Butcher and the Brewer
Dante Boccuzzi & Kelly Ofandiski - Dante, DBA, Ginko, Dante Next Door
Britt-Marie Culey - Coquette Patisserie
Maggie Downey – Doughgirl216
Brian Doyle - Café Avalaun, SōwFood
Brandt Evans - Pura Vida, Blue Canyon
Anna Harouvis - Anna in the Raw, Good to Go Cafes
Chris Hodgson - Hodge's, Driftwood Catering, Bin 216, Cibréo
Jeff Jarrett – US Foods
Douglas Katz - fire food and drink, Katz Club Diner, Provenance
Matt Mytro & Paul Minnillo – Flour
Brian Okin & Adam Bostwick – Graffiti: A Social Kitchen, Cork & Cleaver
Fabio Salerno – Lago, Salerno Group
Jonathon Sawyer - Greenhouse Tavern, Noodlecat, Trentina
Steve Schmoler - Crop Bistro
John Selick – University Hospitals Ahuja Medical Center
Karen Small - Flying Fig
Dion Tsevdos - Chef Cube
Jill Vedaa - Salt
Rocco Whalen – Fahrenheit, Rocco
Eric Williams – Momocho, El Carnicero

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at news@clevescene.com.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.