The Society Page Discovers Street Food: $225 Reserved Seats

Categories: WTF?

Street Eats Benefit Gala
Where: Ferry Plaza
When: Sept. 18, 6-10 p.m.
Cost: $125 to $225

Street food may have just jumped the shark. A charitable foundation that apparently exists to help its members tweet to each other is staging a "Street Eats Benefit Gala" next month at Ferry Plaza, with reserved seats selling for as much as $225.

Rather than force Thurston and Lovey to rub elbows with the riff raff outside Tacolicious or Roli Roti, the reserved seating allows them to wear the good jewelry.

However, if you're a little behind on your house payments, you could get in with general admission tickets for a mere $125 -- if you buy them before Aug. 31.

So what do you get for your tax-deductible money?

From the press release: "Guests will enjoy one-of-a-kind gourmet takes on street food along with wine, coffee, dessert and specialty cocktails from over three dozen of the Bay Area's top restaurants, food trucks and wineries. All admission tickets include bottomless plates, open bar and live entertainment."

The chef lineup is impressive: participants come from Ame, Ana Mandara, Aziza, Bar Agricole, Betelnut, Bluestem Brasserie, Bun Mee, Delfina, Dosa, E&O Trading Co., Epic Roasthouse, Humphry Slocombe, Le Colonial, Marinus, Restaurant Picco, Socola Chocolatier, SPQR and the Slanted Door.

There are even some actual street food people: Nom Nom Truck, which has been on the Food Network, and Little Green Cyclo, which must have snuck in because of the Vietnamese-American connection.

We wouldn't be quite so cynical about this event if it were for a charity that, say, helps poor people. Here's how the press release describes OneVietnam:

Launched in 2010, OneVietnam is an online network that allows Vietnamese expatriates around the world to take deliberate action to build their community where they are and abroad. It's social networking with a cause.

Which is all fine; people need to meet up somehow. And of course we'd like to see -- and taste -- what chefs like Hiro Sone and Charles Phan and Brandon Jew can do in interpreting street food. Maybe the San Francisco Chronicle will even notice street food now. It's safe at last.

Now if we can just get reserved seating installed at dive bars!

Buy tickets here. If your servant waits until after Aug. 31 and the price goes up, behead fire her.

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Location Info



Ferry Building

1 Ferry Building, San Francisco, CA

Category: General

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James H. Bao
James H. Bao

Hey Blake, it's James, cofounder of OneVietnam.  Part of our work does "help people tweet better," but not the people you're thinking of.  Here's an overview of one of our projects:

I'd love for you to check out the event.  If you'd like, I can speak to you more about what our organization does (and doesn't do), then you can decide on our worthiness? Sounds fair?


As an owner of Little Green Cyclo, your comment about us "sneaking in" is baseless and truly unappreciated. For someone who writes for SFWeekly, I would expect you to at least do your due diligence before publishing this article but I guess it's just easier for you to whip up comments from thin air versus actually doing the research? In this instance, it's CLEARLY EVIDENT and not only "apparent" that your entire article is based on your opinion and not facts!


Couldn't OneVietnam just start a Facebook page? Nonprofit status does not automatically mean the organization does good. It can mean the organization enriches its own management. Yeah, just like profit-making organizations.

To celebrate street food, which is usually considered less expensive than a restaurant meal, and charge $225 sounds a bit screwy. 


It says they charge $125 and if you go to their website you'll noticed that there were $95 tickets also. 

Does no one read the article or check what the organization is about before making comments?!  You'll also notice it's the restaurants' take on street food. 

I agree with the first post, if you look at other charity fundraisers they sometimes charge a lot more, and ignoring the fundraiser side, you could consider it just paying to go to a foodie event.  True there are all sorts of non-profits, but there's this feeling that everyone is cynical nowadays.  People in general don't donate their money unless they know where it's going anyways.


You sound biased.  How is this pricier than othercharity galas, or paying over $200 and the like to see a concert, eat at asteak house, or see people in strange customs do funny moves on randomapparatuses? At least when it's a non-profit it's going towards achievingsomething at no profit mind you to the organization.  Or is it better to have people sit around doing nothing, contemplating the economy, rather than showcase causes or businesses?  Also commenting on an organization by using "apparently" means youdidn't do thorough research.

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