Once again chefs and restaurateurs are leading the way in supporting the people of Ukraine in response to the ongoing situation in the European nation. Despite facing an incredibly challenging business environment after the pandemic, chefs are showing their altruism and their desire to serve as they unite across the globe to show the power of food in a crisis. Here’s a list of some of them.
Cook For Ukraine
Best friends, Russian chef Alissa Timoshkina and Ukrainian author Olia Hercules, are the forces behind Cook For Ukraine and a nationwide campaign to use food as the medium to help the people of Ukraine. Based on the Cook For Syria campaign, created by anonymous food hero Clerkenwell Boy and author Zuza Zak, the initiative invites restaurants, hotels and bars to add a £1, £2 or £5 voluntary donation to their menus, as well as promoting traditional Ukrainian recipes and flavours for those who want to show solidarity. Here is a list of participating establishments and the Just Giving page for the campaign.
Ukrainian chef Yurii Kovryzhenko will host a special dinner at Carousel, London, on Sunday 13 March, serving traditional Ukrainian fare. All proceeds will be donated to World Central Kitchen.
Bob Bob Ricard City
High-end restaurant Bob Bob Ricard City, owned by Russian-born British restaurateur Leonid Shutov, is another restaurant that will serve a Ukrainian feast on 13 March. The £195 menu will feature Ukrainian classics like borscht, vareniki and chicken Kyiv, with all proceeds going to UNICEF.
Tom Kerridge, who has two gastropubs in Marlow, is joining a host of others for a charity dinner. His restaurant, The Coach, has changed its chicken Kiev to the 'chicken Kyiv', with all profits made from the dish going to charity.
The Aussie Hospo for Ukraine initiative is an online silent auction where you can bid for a range of meals and other treats - from top-shelf wines, to dining experiences like a meal for four at Shannon Martinez's Collingwood venue, Smith & Daughters. The initiative is the brainchild of former MasterChef contestant Mandy Hall, who took inspiration from the UK's Cook For Ukraine and has raised $10,000 in three days.
Mickael Viljanen of Chapter One
Chefs Unite for Ukraine took place in Allta Winter House on the fifth level of Trinity Street car park on 8 March and included a line-up of the country's best chefs - including Jordan Bailey (Aimsir), Christine Walsh (Éan), Rob Krawczyk (Restaurant Chestnut) - and an auction for prizes that included dinner cooked in your home for six guests by two-Michelin-starred chef Mickael Viljanen of Chapter One.
The number one restaurant in the world donated 100% of all beverage sales from 4 March to the Red Cross for their humanitarian efforts in Ukraine. Chef René Redzepi and team are consistently dedicated to supporting humanitarian causes and there may well be further initiatives planned as the situation unfolds.
Chef Rasmus Kofoed will host a one-day-only lunch at Angelika (his 100% plant-based pop-up) on Sunday 27 March, with the cost for the menu, plus beverage pairing, at 1500 DKK per person. All funds go to UNICEF, to support their efforts in the Ukraine.
As a tribute to the famous Ukrainian pastry chef Dinara Kasko, Azotea, a nikkei restaurant-cocktail bar in Turin, has decided to donate the entire proceeds from the sale of the supernova dessert to the Italian Red Cross, to support people in need in Ukraine. The dessert was designed by the co-owner, soul of the room and pastry shop Noemi Dell’Agnello to pay homage to Ukraine and, symbolically, International Women's Day.
Villa Eden Leading Park Retreat
The Eden Leading Park Retreat, in Merano, will hold a charity dinner on 11 March, with: all proceeds going to help people in Ukraine (the dinner costs 100 euros). During the day, a competition will be held at the Lana Golf Club, a few kilometres from the hotel, with dinner available in the evening.
Association of Agritourism
The Association of Agritourism Italy - the farmhouse-restaurants that are found all over the country - have declared themselves ready to welcome the population fleeing Ukraine. According to the quota set by the EU budget, 13% of Ukrainians will arrive in Italy.
Chef Clémence Gommy - a young chef at the head of the Gomi restaurant in Paris - is helping Ukrainians with a 'solidarity cake', prepared with apples, a cinnamon crumble, homemade salted butter caramel and roasted hazelnuts. The cake is being sold for €4 a slice and all proceeds will go to help the people of Ukraine.
Olivier Leclerc, chef at La Cuisine de Comptoir, is selling a solidarity burger with poutine in support of Ukraine and its people.
World Central Kitchen
José Andrés’ non-profit is on the ground at border crossings in Poland, Moldova and Romania, feeding Ukrainians fleeing their country. The organisation is utilising some of the $100 million donation by Jeff Bezos and is also supported by restaurants and collectives throughout the US, like Chefs Stopping AAPI Hate and Bakers Against Racism.
Veselka, a Ukrainian eatery in New York, which serves classic Ukrainian comfort food like varenyky (pierogi) and borscht, is collecting donations of supplies and sending proceeds to Razom for Ukraine, a non-profit Ukrainian-American human rights organisation.
Chefs For Ukraine
A collective of Ukrainian chefs, Chefs For Ukraine are promoting Ukrainian recipes to raise awareness and support those who are using food and cooking to show solidarity in a time of crisis.
Gary LeBlanc, founder and CEO of US non-profit Mercy Chefs, says his group has established two bases of operation in Romania, and is stockpiling resources for a long-term commitment to help the people of Ukraine.