With all of the indulgent food happenings in and around LA, it’s easy to forget that there are many people for whom eating even one meal a day is a luxury.
Enter Cart For A Cause, the LA chapter of St Vincents national Meals on Wheels program, and some of LA’s top chefs. Traveling through the city every Tuesday through the fall, Cart For A Cause supplies one meal to seniors for every meal that’s sold from the truck. With this kind of ratio, everybody wins!
Each movable feast is $10, and includes a lunch/snack/drink/dessert combo, often “delivered” (at least through the pick-up window), by the chef who prepared it. Such luminaries have included (so far): Joe Miller (Joe’s, Bar Pintxo), Sal Marino (Il Grano), Jean Francois (La Cachette Bistro), Susan Feniger (Street), Josef Centeno (Lazy Ox Canteen), Eric Greenspan (The Foundry), Vinny Dotolo and Jon Shook (Animal), David Myers and Dong Choi (Comme Ca) and Alex Becker (Nobu W. Hollywood). And there are many more to go until the truck [possibly] slows its roll in November.
I visited the cart on July 20th and was treated to Joe Miller’s chicken, spinach and ricotta raviolis, dressed with cherry tomato, arugula and Parmesan cheese. This was in addition to my choice of POM drink and cookie.
My partner in repast, John, sampled the roasted pork banh mi sandwich. This Vietnamese/French hybrid was topped with sliced mortadella, cilantro, slightly pickled cucumber, jalapeno slices, daikon radish & carrot salad.
As if these weren’t treat enough, our meal also included a burrata, heirloom tomato and grilled melon salad.
Needless to say, everything was sensory perfection.
According to numbers posted on their Facebook page, Cart For A Cause has fed, to date, 2000 homebound seniors! That’s 2000 men and women who might not have had the luxury of a hot meal – or anything at all – to eat that day. It also equals 2000 sated and satisfied Angelenos (who, by-the-way, might not otherwise be able to afford the high cost of dining at one of the star chefs’ uber establishments). 4000 people, total, who – through hunger, charity and graciousness – have all shared in something universal: Food. If you subscribe to my philosophy that food and wine is love, that’s a whole lot of heart, Los Angeles. Be proud.