Within every kitchen, there is beautiful chaos. As plates move and orders are fired, everything must glide from the pass to the diner in unison; there’s communion with food. As far as events go, sometimes, things fly off the rails, while other times, the stars align, and all the things the planners wanted to happen – do. The food is divine, the night isn’t too hot or cold, and the bottles of malbec only enhance exuberant conversation.  

This past week at Lenoir, The Cook’s Nook held their annual philanthropic event, Texas Table: A Feast for A Cause, which showcased the message that “foodas medicine,” and helped raise money and awareness for two local organizations, Black Mamas ATX and Partners for Education, Agriculture and Sustainability (PEAS). The result of the efforts by The Cook’s Nook, the team at Lenoir, and everyone who volunteered went off with fireworks.  

Black Mammas ATX is a group of women dedicated to helping Black mothers, slashing morbidity rates amongst women in the Austin area. This group leads the charge throughout Central Texas to get mothers the education and access to necessary resources. PEAS was founded to cultivate joyful connections with the natural world. PEAS maintains a community farm, runs camps, and leads professional development to help teachers bridge critical science, nutrition, math, and health concepts from the garden to the classroom. What these organizations are doing matters, and seeing their missions supported is crucial to the overall health of the Austin area.  

Walking into Lenoir, the first thing that came through the air was the smells wafting from the kitchen, drifting through to the patio, setting a tone for everyone that “this was going to be really good.” Based on the courses, all assumptions were confirmed. The chefs, local celebrity chefs who joyfully share their craft, working together to create a playlist of styles and culinary identities showcased what some of the best in Austin could do for a good cause. Something is intoxicating about garlic hitting olive oil, about short ribs lost in braising liquid. As people chatted at their tables, the backyard of Lenoir was quaint and the kind of place that served equally as perfect for a personal night out or a special gathering like Texas Table. Lenoir oozes a casual cool, making for an ideal location for an event hoping to impact the communities it serves. All the guests at Texas Table felt the same way as they sipped their wines and tasted amazing cheese plates from Antonelli’s while the servers moved harmoniously as pros do.  

Virtuoso guitar player Justice Philips held down the evening as he ripped up and down the fretboard, inviting a calm atmosphere. The event also held a paddled auction featuring guest diners at some of the best dinner spots around the Capital City. Through both, over $15,000 was raised, a sign of generosity the Austin community is willing to help with. When asked how the event went, Dwight Flinkerbusch, VP of Business Development, remarked, “Tonight was a total success. We’ve shown that people in Austin care about creating real impact within our community, and I’m excited about how we can improve and make this event even better next year! u  

Seeing as this was the third year of the event, The Cook’s Nook has only built upon its successes by supporting the local community, which is something Founder and CEO Joi Chevalier is passionate about, “we love seeing organizations like Black Mamas ATX and PEAs get the spotlight shone on them. Nights like this, where the community comes together to support one another, is impactful. I’m proud of the volunteers and teams it takes to pull off an event like this and I’m happy that we’ve raised money for two organizations we care about.”  

If the recent Texas Table indicated what’s to come, there is hope to see real change throughout specific Austin communities. As people show up for one another, these nights matter; as dinner, drinks, and conversation, there is always goodwill to share. 

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