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Supper Club
Photograph: Walter Wlodarczyk

Don't miss these theatrical meals from New York's best chefs

Supper Club is back with an exciting lineup for its dramatic food experiences

By
Shaye Weaver
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New York City's arts and culinary scenes have had to get creative to survive, and finally, as both industries are beginning their return, they'll collide at Supper Club for a theatrical dinner series you won't want to pass up.

Supper Club, the monthly dinner series that celebrates local chefs through a unique dining experience at Red Hook's Pioneer Works, is back starting in May—more than a year after its last event.

Supper Club
Photograph: Walter Wlodarczyk

The 2021 lineup includes DeVonn Francis (Yardy World) with Anna Polonsky (polonsky and friends) on May 4; Loren Abramovitch and Daniel Soskolne (LEV) on June 29; Woldy Reyes (Woldy Kusina) on July 20; Maiko Kyogoku and Emily Yuen (Bessou) on August 17; and Fredrik Berselius (Aska) on September 21.

"This inaugural event will be one of the first social gatherings for many people since March of 2020. It's happening in the Spring which felt very much apropos for us, and something we wanted to celebrate for all it symbolizes: Nature and humans’ new beginnings, hope and renewal," DeVonn Francis and Anna Polonsky said in a joint statement.

Their event will reinvent the celebration of spring, taking it from the "euro-centric and wasteful lamb and peas and all the accouterments on a white table cloth" to something more sustainable and multicultural. 

"DeVonn's menu, Shakoor's music and our set design will take the classic Flemish/European painting of a feast to a world with Caribbean visuals and ingredients, and incorporate the traditions and spirit of Black spaces of gathering and dining," they said. "This meal also highlights that food is about the joy of participation and intimacy, that sustainability is an active part of being a consumer, and that a meal reflects the importance of being in community with people who don’t necessarily share the same life experiences."

Supper Club Polonsky Yardy
Photograph: Courtesy Supper Club / Pioneer Works

Woldy Kusina, which is presenting a meal on July 20, wants to celebrate the communal aspect of the dinner and will ask diners to use their hands to eat their food.

"The concept for my dinner is being able to reconnect with people in a way that’s celebratory and communal after living through a pandemic," Woldy Reyes said. "It brings in the idea of Kamayan, a Filipino feast where the food is laid out on a banana leaf and you eat with your hands. It will be a multi-sensory dining experience that celebrates people and culture."

Woldy Kusina
Photograph: Noah Fecks

The dinner from Bessou, which is a vendor at Time Out Market New York, is slated for August 17 and it's going to be all about the five senses. 

"Bessou is the Japanese word for 'holiday villa' and represents the idea of a home away from home. After a year in this pandemic being separated and disconnected, we are excited to create a dinner experience with Pioneer Works that brings us together for an intimate evening safely," Bessou's Maiko Kyogoku and Emily Yuen said. "We hope to engage sight, smell, hearing, taste and touch—all of the senses that have been sleeping this past year- through this multi-course dinner. Our hope is that you will be transported to our idea of a vacation home."
bessou
Photograph: Courtesy Bessou

The chefs presenting this year were curated to reflect NYC's food scene—it's diverse, it's creative and it's a community, Pioneer Works' founding artistic director, Gabriel Florenz, says.

"After a full year of limited dining and interaction, we can’t wait for its return and to celebrate the chefs and food industry who have been hit especially hard by the pandemic."

Tickets are available for May 4 Supper Club with Yardy World and Anna Polonsky. Tickets start from $125 for Pioneer Works members and $150 for the general public.

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