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The 2012 Audi FEASTIVAL in pictures

The COOK crew is still catching its collective breath a full 48 hours after the curtain dropped on this year’s Audi FEASTIVAL. The crown jewel of the city’s culinary event calendar, FEASTIVAL, now in its third year, raised a tremendous amount of support for the city’s Live Arts and Philly Fringe, a mission represented by the multiple arts patrons in the crowd of 950-plus and the talented performers who transformed Delaware Avenue’s Pier 9 into an absolute funhouse. Audrey Claire Taichman, who curates the event with Stephen Starr and Michael Solomonov, recently revealed that 2010′s inaugural FEASTIVAL was the inspiration for COOK itself. It’s not difficult to see why, considering the support, respect and camaraderie displayed by this year’s attendees.

A total of 85 of Philly’s best bars and restaurants set up shop at this year’s event, sponsored by Philly Mag/Foobooz PECO and the DRWC, pulling out every conceivable stop on their mission to feed the food-fixated crowd. Their epicurean enthusiasm was matched by the high-flying artists — Brian Sanders’ JUNK Dancers, Illstyle Peace + Productions and one-of-a-kind digital projections conceived by Tisch School of the Arts students kept energy levels sky-high — as well as the luminaries who took the FEASTIVAL stage. Former Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell, who served as the evening’s emcee, and Philly mayor Michael Nutter joined the FEASTIVAL curators in auctioning off several big-ticket culinary items to benefit Live Arts/Fringe, including two star-studded “ultimate dinner parties,” a barbecue hosted by Rendell and Solomonov and an Eagles Super Bowl package. All told, the evening collected an unbelievable $450,000 (!) to bolster the future of the arts in Philadelphia.

COOK photographer Yoni Nimrod did an incredible job capturing just a few of this year’s FEASTIVAL participants in action.

Joe Cicala of Le Virtu

(L-R): Michael Solomonov of Zahav, Pierre Calmels of Bibou, Peter Woolsey of Bistrot La Minette

Lou Boquila of Audrey Claire

COOK‘s Lily Cope and Stateside‘s James Kengott

The La Colombe coffee truck

Buddakan and Morimoto

Jeremy Nolen, Henrik Ringbom and Jessica Nolen of Brauhaus Schmitz, serving foie gras liverwurst

Bacon-wrapped “Calaca Dogs” served by Lucio Palazzo of La Calaca Feliz

Desserts by Buddakan

Sauteed prawn with lemongrass chili sauce and pickled ginger, served by The Continental

Daniel Eng of Lemon Hill

Spicy tuna tartare, served by Michael Schulson of Sampan

Amy Henderson and Michael Solomonov of Zahav

Peter Woolsey of Bistrot La Minette, triple-fisting

The infamous “Donut Robot” from Federal Donuts

Michael Solomonov of Zahav

Nigiri from Pod

Pibil pork tacos with avocado salsa, smoked jalapeno vinaigrette and pickled red onion, served by El Vez

Robert Aikens of The Dandelion, serving pork rillette with grain mustard, porcini mushrooms and pear/shallot chutney

Soused topneck clams with celery, turnips, parsley and crispy wonton, served by The Corner

Katie Cavuto-Boyle (center) of Healthy Bites

Rachel Klein of Miss Rachel’s Pantry

Local lamb and kale meatballs with heirloom tomato conserva and rosemary oil, served by Talula’s Garden

Erin O’Shea of Percy Street Barbecue

George Sabatino of Stateside

Pierre Calmels of Bibou

Nicolas Fanucci and Walter Abrams of Le Bec Fin

Patrick Feury of Nectar

Jason Cichonski of Ela

Scott Schroeder of South Philly Tap Room and American Sardine Bar

(L-R): Pierre Calmels of Bibou, Lee Styer of Fond, Jon Cichon of Lacroix

Ben Puchowitz of Matyson

All Photos: Yoni Nimrod

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