Past Events

IN’s Temptation – September 21, 2015 – Chefs worked with local apples to create fall-themed samples. Participants included Jessica Ditily of Cream & Sugar Cafe, Donny Keating of Joe’s Deli, Matt Davis of Trattoria Aroma, Nate Hall of Hollow Bistro & Brew, and Pat McLaren of Wellington Pub.

IN’s Aw shucks! – August 24, 2015 – The evening’s hucksters included chef Dan Draudt of Butterwood Sweet & Savory, chef Chris Walters of Century Grill, and barkeep Brett Krebuszewski of Mes Que, all preparing delicious samples featuring local cor

IN’s Gluten ExtravagaznaAugust 3, 2015 – Guests sampled scratchmade biscuits and spreads from Jennifer Boye of The Mansion, Ellen Gedra of The Black Sheep, and James Roberts of Toutant. The audience voted for their favorite and Jennifer Boye took home to proverbial golden rolling pin.

IN’s 4th Anniversary and Annual Cocktail Competition – July 20, 2015 – This cram-packed and totally popular event featured cocktails from Buffalo Proper, The Black Sheep, Vera, and Bourbon & Butter with base liquors from Lockhouse Distllery, Hornitos, Monkey Shoulder, and Reyka. Guest judges included Christopher Carlsson, Lizz Schumer, Tommy Lombardo, and Jerry Ciesielski.

Total Effing Meltdown – June 15, 2015 – Lake Effect Ice Cream returned with a frozen treat wonderland beyond any the IN crowd has ever experienced. Floats, and milkshakes, and sundaes, oh my!

IN’s Eggcellent Adventure – May 18, 2015 – Incredibly creative egg offerings from some of the local industry’s coolest folks: barman Jason Woods of Vera, chef Kate Hey of Betty Crockski, chef Brian Mietus of Bacchus, and chef Carmelo Raimondi of Carmelo’s.

Spamtastic 2.0 – April 27, 2015 – Some of Buffalo’s top chefs prepared spamtastic culinary creations. Dishes from chef Chris Dorsaneo of Lloyd, chef Jennifer Boye of Mansion on Delaware Avenue, chef Adam Goetz of Craving, and chef Mike Andrzejewski of Seabar thrilled guests (and boosted their sodium levels).

Beer and Snacks with Big Ditch – April 13, 2015 – Downtown’s hot new brewery provided a beer tasting paired with our favorite junk foods.

Saké to Me – March 23, 2015 – Gekkeikan’s imported sakés were transformed into incredible drinks by barkeeps Tony Rials of Bourbon and Butter, David Busch of Buffalo Proper, Jeff Yan of the soon-to-open Toutant, and Dave Rogge from SATO.

INferno Hot Sauce Tasting – March 9, 2015 – Featuring Lloyd, Koop’s Kitchen, Chef James Roberts, Chef Krista Van Wagner, a special Salsa Borracha from Chef Victor Parra Gonzalez, and a ton o’ crazy sauces designed to set your mouth ablaze.

Seven Deadly Sins: – February 23, 2015 – IN celebrated the Seven Deadly Sins with food and drink offerings representing each.

Greed: Chef Victor Parra Gonzlaez from Jaguar at the Bistro
Lust: Ben Johnson from Blue Table Chocolates
Sloth: Jonathan Oakes from Leonard Oakes Estate Winery
Wrath: Chef Michael Obarka from Ristorante Lombardo
Pride: Chefs Michael Dimmer and Christian Willmott from Marble + Rye
Gluttony: Chef Mike Andrzejewski from SEABAR, Bourbon and Butter, Cantina Loco, and Tappo Restaurant
Envy: Kerry Quaile from Buffalo Proper

Young Guns January 26, 2015 – Some of Buffalo’s best young, up-and-coming chefs and bartenders served food and cocktail pairings featuring MEM’s fine tea. Teams included: Benji Pecoraro and Adam Nugent of Vera Pizzeria; Scott Crombie and Joshua Anthony Campbell of Buffalo Proper; Phil Limina and Nichole Rashelle of Tappo.

Punch Party – November 10, 2014 – A packed house enjoyed punches from several of Buffalo’s best barkeeps, including happy, shining faces from The Black Sheep, Tappo, Buffalo Proper, and Vera Pizzeria! This event was sponsored by Craft Distillers and Martin Scott Wines.

GEL It! – August 18, 2014 – This wild exploration of gelatin included both sweet and savory bites from our pal, Chef Mike A, Chef Dan Borelli, of the Mansion on Delaware Avenue, Chef Corey Kley of Rue Franklin. Plus, Cameron Rector of Vera Pizzeria servedup two kinds of boozy jello shots!

IN’s Annual Cocktail Competition & Two-Year Anniversary July 28, 2014 – IN’s Annual Cocktail Contest featured excellent artisan cocktails from WINNER Tony Rials of Mike A at Lafayette, plus: Tommy Lombardo of Ristorante Lombardo, Cameron Rector of Vera Pizzeria, Jon Karel of Buffalo Proper, Christopher Guilmet of Hydraulic Hearth, and Timothy Stevens of Ballyhoo. Judges included:Donny Kutzbach, cocktail writer at Buffalo Spree magazine, Chuck Cerankosky of Rochester’s Cure and Good Luck, Jonathan Oakes of Leonard Oakes Estate Winery, and Harley Alhart of Empire Merchants North. This event was sponsored by Nolet’s.

I Scream, You ScreamJune 30, 2014 Summer arrived, and the IN crowd experienced a flight of ice cream from Sweet Jenny’s, purveyors of locally made ice cream, frozen yogurt, gelato, and sorbet since the 80s. Cameron Rector of Vera served up delicious, fun, and boozy ice cream milkshakes, too!

From Russia with Love, featuring Zamir GottaMay 19, 2014 – Anthony Bourdain’s favorite sidekick returned to IN for another night of good fun. Guests enjoyed drink specials with Double Cross Vodka and spent time hanging with our pal, Zamir.

Eat Me, a varietal chocolate tastingMarch 31, 2014 – The IN crowd experienced a guided varietal chocolate tasting featuring a sampling of Guittard’s single origin chocolates. This portion of the event was led by chocolatier Brian Donaghy of The Criollo Group and host Christa Seychew. Ben Johnson from Blue Table Chocolates wrapped up the evening up with samples of the truffles that have earned his company a great reputation.

INferno, IN’s 2nd Annual Hot Sauce CompetitionFebruary 17, 2014Featured Bottled Sauces included: Buffalo Tom’s Gourmet Hot Sauce; Koops Kitchen; Krista’s Jamaican Hot Sauce; Lloyd’s Rocket Sauce; Toasted Jaws’ Morumba Sauce, and
Headstone Heat. Guests could also sign a waiver to taste the spicy hot Suzumebachi sauce! Congrats to Lloyd’s for sweeping this year’s competition and to Toasted Jaws for coming in second!

IN’s 2nd Annual Red Hot Chili CompetitionJanuary 27, 2014 – Chefs whipped up their best chili in hopes of winning the audience vote. Guests sampled chilis from Frank Mercado at M&T’s Executive Dining Room, Jennfier Boye at the Mansion on Delaware Avenue, Jeffrey Cooke of Osteria 166, and Prish Moran of Sweetness 7. Congratulations to Jeffrey Cooke for another win!

Tongue Tied – December 28, 2013 – IN’s Christa Seychew employed three proven methods for determining the type of palate each of our guest’s have. Tongues are as unique as fingerprints—no two tongues are alike! We put tongues to the test, and then used wine flights from Empire Merchants North to help guests understand why they like what they like!

IN’s 2nd Annual Meatball ThrowdownNovember 25, 2013 – Meatballs were offered up by the fine chefs at Panaro’s Restaurant, Osteria 166, Tappo Restaurant, Savor Niagara, and Sato. Osteria 166 won the audience vote! Congratulations to chef Jeffery Cooke!

Cracked & CarvedOctober 28, 2013 – Guests participated in an on-site pumpkin carving contest, we screened the original version of Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory,  and got all cracked out on a Wonka-esque candy feast of delectable sweets, featuring amazing handcrafted nibbles from La Petit Chocolatier, Oh Pour L’amour Du Chocolat, and Chef James Roberts.

Smoked & INked – September 30, 2013 – Guests enjoyed crispy squid ink arancini with smoke paprika aioli and white anchovy from chef Michael Obarka of Ristorante Lombardo, and chef JJ Richert of Torches and The Garage Deli showed up with his custom built smoker—which is housed in an old 1966 Corvair. He made guests smoked bologna and Budweiser onion sandwiches and his brother, chef Kevin Richert of Smoke on the Water grilled up some pork belly tacos. Pro photographer KC Kratt documented food and culinary themed tattoos LIVE at Seabar that night.

Apple Celebration, hosted by – September 16, 2013 – Apples, apples, apples! Apple Pumpkin Soup from Cafe 59, amazing Apple Dumplings from Mazurek’s Bakery, Salty Caramel Apple Pie and Cider ice creams from Sweet Jenny’s, and Leonard Oakes Estate Winery’s award-winning Steampunk Cider.

Crunchy, Crazy Chips August 19, 2013 – Attendees sampled over a dozen odd potato chip varieties including Canadian Neal Brothers and PA’s Herr’s chips.

Pie Night August 5, 2013 – IN’s Annual Pie Competition featured WINNER Luci Levere of Elm Street Bakery, Ellen Gedra of Bistro Europa, Deb Clark of Delish, and Cynthia Richert of Torches.

IN’s Annual Cocktail Competition & One-Year Anniversary July 22, 2013 – IN’s Annual Cocktail Contest featured excellent artisan cocktails from WINNER Tony Rials of Mike A at Hotel Lafayette, plus Kerry Quaile of Vera, Tommy Lombardo of Lombardo’s, and Michael “Greenie” Green of Bacchus.

Flavor TrippIN’ July 1, 2013  A very special Industry Night where guests sampled miracle fruit tablets and their magical ability to transform the palate. All funds raised were donated to chef Daniel Tracy, who is living with Lou Gehrig’s disease.

SPAMtastic SPAMapalooza – June 8, 2013 – Three chefs had their way with the IN crowd. Chef Mike Obarka of Lombardo’s served handmade english muffins topped with spam, quail eggs and hollandaise. Chef Chris Dorsaneo of Lloyd prepared spam musubi, and Chef Andrzejewski served saimin noodles with spam

Frozen – May 20, 2013 – Guests kicked off summer by sampling four of Lake Effect Ice Cream’s artisan flavors: Wrath of Pecan, Salty Caramel, Peanut Butter Epiphany, and Blood Orange with Bitters

Slinky & Seductive SausageMay 6, 2013 – A blind tasting of five sweet Italian sausages made by Buffalo butchers. A special Umbrian-style sausage was made by Chef Bruce Wieszala of Tabree

Sexy Sake – April 8, 2013 – Samples included traditional hot sake, unfiltered nigori sake, and chilled premium Gekkiakan Horin. Chef Andrzejewski served Japanese izakaya-style hors d’oeuvres

INdecent – March 18, 2013 – An evening of COPPA’s  charcuterie and whiskey pairings, courtesy of Empire Merchants North

Maple Madness – March 4, 2013 – Three maple-infused tasting sessions included bites from Chef James Roberts, Chef Edward Forster, and maple bacon donuts from Paula’s Donuts with Cabin Fever maple whiskey shots, courtesy of Empire Merchants North

INsatiate – February 18, 2013 – High-end butter tasting with bread from Elm Street Bakery

INsulateFebruary 4, 2013IN’s Annual Chili Championship featured chilis from Dustin Swaciak of Shango, Andrew Murtha of Brick Oven Bistro, and WINNER Frank Mercado of M&T’s Executive Dining Room

INoculationJanuary 21, 2013 – Cheese tasting with Nickel City Cheese & Mercantile

INspireJanuary 7, 2013 – Three pairing sessions of fresh oysters (with Gabe the Fish Babe and Rick Criden of Schneider’s) and sparkling wines (with Empire Merchants North)

IN rotationDecember 17, 2012IN’s Annual Meatball Throwdown (Mark Sciortino of Marco’s, Jonathan Diati of Blue Monk, Rich Hollister of Cantina Loco, and WINNER Chris Dorsaneo of Lloyd)

IN synchNovember 19, 2012 – Local craft beers paired with junk food (with special guest host Julia Burke, featuring Community Beer Works, Flying Bison, Custom Brew Crafters, Southern Tier Brewing)

INtoxicated with ZamirNovember 5, 2012 – A special ticketed IN event where guests met and spent time with Zamir Gotta of Anthony Bourdain’s “No Reservations,” sponsored by Double Cross Vodka

IN respiteOctober 22, 2012 – A shot and a beer for every industry person who survived Local Restaurant Week!

INspirit October 8, 2012 – Four chefd created imaginative pairings for four single malt scotches provided by Empire Merchants North (featuring Frank Mercado of M&T’s Executive Dining Room, Chris Daigler of Encore, Brian Mietus of Bacchus, and Chris Salvati of Buffalo Catering Company)

INdulgeSeptember 24, 2012 – A special pro-foie gras event featured Hudson Valley Foie Gras in three forms—seared, torchon, and mousse, all created by the staff at Seabar and Mike A’s at Hotel Lafayette

INfernoSeptember 10, 2012IN’s Annual Hot Sauce Competition (featuring Lloyd, Headstone Heat, Buffalo Fire Sauce, James Roberts, and WINNER Curly’s)

IN ‘s Nuit BlancheAugust 20, 2012 – Four chefs created dishes showcasing the soft white cheese of Vermont Butter & Cheese (featuring Jennifer Boye of Mansion on Delaware Avenue, Edward Forster of Mike A at Hotel Lafayette, Corey Kley of Rue Frankling, and Michael Obarka of Ristorante Lombardo)

IN’s Slick & PittedAugust 6, 2012 – Fabulous cured meats and housemade breads were featured alongside varietal olive oils from D’Avolio. Guests sampled cured meats from Fermin Iberico and Bistro Europa, olives from around the globe, and amazing oils.

IN’s Cocktail Kick-offJuly 27, 2012IN’s Annual Cocktail Contest featured excellent artisan cocktails from WINNERS Jon Karel and Cameron Rector of Vera, Tony Rials of Mike A at Hotel Lafayette, Drew Love of Cantina Loco, and James Roberts of Park Country Club. Special guest, author Christine Sismondo joined us, acting as judge and celebrity guest.