‘No Passport Required’ celebrity Chef Marcus Samuelsson to host WCNY’s live virtual Taste of Fame fundraiser Oct. 16

WCNY, Central New York’s public broadcaster, will host its 6th annual Taste of Fame culinary fundraiser with Marcus Samuelsson, award-winning Chef, Restaurateur, Author, and Co-owner of Red Rooster Harlem. The annual event highlights award-winning chefs and celebrates their culinary personalities and careers. Due to coronavirus, Marcus will host the culinary journey and cooking experience live from New York City to home kitchens across the country on Zoom.

The live event begins at 6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT and features a 30-minute cocktail Q&A with Marcus hosted by last year’s Taste of Fame headlining chef, Julia Collin Davison of the hit PBS show “America’s Test Kitchen.”

After the cocktail Q&A, guests will also enjoy a live cooking lesson, an ingredient box serving four people  delivered to households by event and culinary partner, Tastings NYC, a private Zoom rooms to eat with friends in other households, two-week access to the recorded cooking lesson, and the online silent auction.

There will also be special appearances made celebrity chefs and local CNY chefs, such as Lidia Bastianich from “Lidia’s Italy” and numerous other PBS shows, Ali Khan from “Cheap Eats,” Laura Theodore from “The Jazzy Vegetarian,” Joanne Weir from “Plates and Places,” Brad Miller from “Food Truck Nation,” and Methin “Max” Chutinthranond from Syracuse restaurant Lemon Grass.

The Premium Ticket adds an autographed copy of Marcus’ cookbook “The Red Rooster Cookbook” for $225. Tickets are 10% off now–Aug. 31 and WCNY members receive an additional 5% off at wcny.org/events or by calling (315) 453-2424. WCNY also invites members of other PBS stations across the country to use code: PBSMEMBER to receive the additional 5% off.

“WCNY is excited to continue to produce this event in a new and interactive way across the country,” said Mitch Gelman, WCNY President and CEO. “Guests will have the opportunity to enjoy cooking a delicious meal with Chef Marcus live in their own kitchen!”

Taste of Fame is made possible with support from Presenting Sponsors, Wegmans and Visions Federal Credit Union; Dessert Sponsor, Bond, Schoeneck & King; Chef Minutes Sponsor, Pathfinder Bank; and Zoom Room Sponsor, Strategic Communications LLC, and Digital and Print Recipe Card Sponsor OneGroup.


6:30 p.m. /ET | Cocktails

7 p.m. | Dinner

3:30 p.m./ PT | Cocktails

4 p.m. | Dinner


Appetizer—Southern Greens Salad with Vinaigrette

A mix of tender salad greens tossed with a sorghum spiked apple cider vinaigrette and crunchy southern pecans.

Entrée—Curry with Yams & Swiss Chard (Choice of Shrimp, Chicken, or Tofu)

A fragrant, spiced coconut curry filled with sweet yams, verdant Swiss chard, and a tender protein of your choice.

Dessert—Red Velvet Cookies

A chewy cookie bursting with white chocolate chips and the classic Red Velvet flavor everyone knows and loves.


Tickets are on sale – Oct. 2

Now–Aug. 31 guests can purchase tickets with a 10% discount. WCNY members will receive an additional 5% off tickets at checkout. For more information, visit wcny.org/tasteoffame, call (315) 453-2424, or email haley.dubnoff@wcny.org. WCNY also invites members of other PBS stations across the country to use code: PBSMEMBER to receive the additional 5% off.

Proceeds from the Taste of Fame fundraiser support WCNY’s programs and services.


$175.00 $157.50 with 10% discount


Cook LIVE with celebrity Chef Marcus Samuelsson in your home kitchen! The virtual culinary journey includes a 30-minute cocktail Chef Marcus and Q&A hosted by Chef Julia Collin Davison, a Tastings NYC ingredient box delivery, a live online cooking lesson, two-week access to the recorded cooking lesson, a private Zoom room to eat with friends, and the online silent auction.


$225.00 $202.50 with 10% discount


Enjoy all the benefits of a Dinner Ticket, plus an autographed copy of Chef Marcus’ “The Red Rooster Cookbook.”

About Chef Marcus Samuelsson

Born in Ethiopia, but raised and educated in Gothenberg, Sweden, Samuelsson is an acclaimed chef who owns restaurants around the world, including Red Rooster Harlem, Red Rooster Overtown in Miami, Red Rooster Shoreditch in London, MARCUS Montreal, Norda Oslo, and Marcus B&P in Newark, New Jersey.

Samuelsson is the host of the PBS hit show “No Passport Required,” in which he travels across the United States to learn about food traditions from different immigrant communities.

He has been crowned champion of cooking television shows Top Chef Masters and Chopped All Stars, and was the winning mentor on ABC’s “The Taste.” He currently serves as an executive producer of Viceland’s show, “Hustle, as well as the Co-Chair of Career Through Culinary Arts Program (C-Cap), and co-producer of the food festival, Harlem EatUp!

Samuelsson has published a number of cookbooks, including the New York Times Bestselling memoir, “Yes, Chef,” and “The Red Rooster Cookbook: The Story of Food and Hustle in Harlem.”

Samuelsson was the youngest chef to ever receive three stars from the New York Times. His other honors include: the James Beard Foundation Award for Outstanding TV Personality, the James Beard Foundation Award for Best Chef: New York City, and the 2019 Vilcek Foundation Prize in Culinary Arts, awarded to immigrants who have made lasting contributions to American Society

About WCNY

WCNY was founded in 1965 as The Educational Television Council of Central New York. Today, it is a community-owned media company that produces content across multiple platforms, including television and radio programs, dynamic web and targeted email content, the WCNY CONNECT member magazine, and social media. Through online stream technology, WCNY has a global broadcast audience of viewers and listeners throughout the United States and 17 countries. WCNY operates five digital, pledge-free broadcast channels and three radio stations. Towers are located in Watertown and Utica, and WCNY’s radio programming extends into Canada. Classic FM is one of a few radio stations in the world dedicated to locally programmed music.

Educational services include the TV Classroom Network; workshops; a 10,000 square-foot building with dedicated Education Center; Read Out, a radio reading service for the visually impaired; Enterprise America for middle school students; and a media and marketing communications program for high school students.

WCNY is LEED® Platinum Certified by the U.S. Green Building Council, the highest certification level achievable in Leadership, Energy & Environmental Design. Other achievements include Business of the Year in the nonprofit category in 2014 by CenterState CEO.