Q&A: Dio Mio Chef Spencer White on Giving Back at Chefs Up Front

Local chefs and diners alike love the chance to help end childhood hunger with a great meal at Chefs Up Front. Courtesy Chefs Up Front.

Help end childhood hunger with a great meal at Chefs Up Front. Courtesy Chefs Up Front

 Put your stomach to work supporting a great cause with a great meal!

The 18th annual Chefs Up Front Culinary Gala, to be held May 6 at 6 p.m. at the Mile High Ballroom, will bring 30 of Colorado’s top chefs—two of whom have actually been “Top Chef” contestants—together to cook a four-course meal just for you and your table. Proceeds from the chefs’ four-course tableside service will support Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters Colorado food skills and nutrition education program.

We sat asked participating chef Spencer White, one of the “artisanal spaghetti monsters” behind Dio Mio, about why he loves the event enough to come back for his seventh year.

Why did you participate in Chefs Up Front?
“It supports a great cause that every chef has a soft spot in their heart for: feeding kids and families. We all know that it’s important, as there’s so much food waste in the industry in general, so it’s nice to be able to put food where it’s needed and feed some families instead.

Spencer White (right), alongside Dio Mio chef and co-owner Alex Figura. Courtesy Dio Mio.

Spencer White (right), alongside Dio Mio chef and co-owner Alex Figura. Courtesy Dio Mio.

“In fact, it’s one of the few charity events we still do at Dio Mio, because it’s just so well run. The organizers and sponsors are so easy to work with, which makes it even more worth it for us to donate our time to it. It’s truly an event that I look forward to every year.” 

What makes it fun?
“The tables are always super stoked about what we’re doing. As chefs, we all cook for hundreds of people every night, so to just cook for 10 is a treat. It’s a great social gathering as well; the organizers always get the best restaurants, so it means I get to hang out with buddies from among the best chefs in Denver.” 

What dishes are you preparing?
“Alex (Figura, Dio Mio’s co-owner) and I are kicking off our spring menu, which is fun because this is when we get great spring produce from California. Our table has a lot of dietary restrictions so we’re preparing a multitude of things, including a pasta with fava beans and morels that I’m really excited about.”

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