Craving a foodie day trip? Leave Chicago behind on March 25 and take the train up to Milwaukee for a celebration of Chinese cuisine and charity. The second annual Dim Sum + Give Some event will bring together 30 of the top chefs across the Midwest to serve up delicious bites inspired by the traditional dumplings and small plates that make up dim sum.
Hosted by Dan Van Rite and Dan Jacobs of Milwaukee’s DanDan, a Chinese-American restaurant, the proceeds of Dim Sum + Give Some go to a cause that strikes home for Jacobs in particular. In 2016, just as DanDan was about to open, Jacobs was diagnosed with Kennedy’s Disease. This genetic neuromuscular disease is often mistaken for ALS, as those affected often lose the ability to walk or talk.
This life-changing moment inspired the chefs to create an event to support the Kennedy’s Disease Association and their research into a cure. Last year the event raised $25,000 for the cause, and Jacobs is hoping to top that this year. “I’m looking forward to raising more money!” he says. “Our goal is to donate as much money as possible to the Kennedy’s Disease Association.”
This year the event will be a cocktail party displaying the flavors of great restaurants from Milwaukee and beyond, including Chicago’s own Little Goat. The support shown by the restaurant community for Jacobs truly makes this event special. “It means everything,” says Jacobs of the collaboration. “These chefs give up their entire day and some even travel from out of town to be a part of the event and support me. It’s humbling.”
There will be a lot to look forward to during Dim Sum + Give Some. A preview hosted by Jacobs and Stephanie Izard featured short rib potstickers, pea shoot and Chinese chive dumplings, dandan noodles (naturally), and Taiwanese pineapple cake – a mere sampling of the dishes to behold at the event. “This year we've expanded our offerings to include things like a Bloody Mary and mimosa bar, as well as a retail component,” says Jacobs, “which are not only fun additions to the event (who doesn’t love a Bloody Mary?) but also add other ways to raise money on-top of ticket sales.”