Three-time James Beard Award Finalist, Chef Steve McHugh, is all about Blood Cancer Awareness, having successfully battled non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma prior to opening Cured, his acclaimed gastropub in San Antonio. Every September for Blood Cancer Awareness Month, McHugh hosts the annual Cured for a Cure Dinner to benefit The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society [LLS] for $350 per person.  On Sunday, September 9, McHugh will be joined by four fellow chefs who share his commitment to seasonal, organic, and hand crafted cuisine, the basis of the healthy diet to which he largely credits his recovery, and which is the foundation of all he offers at Cured. 

Chef Kelly Fields has long been at the forefront of the sustainable food movement in the South, serving as Executive Pastry Chef at Restaurant August before opening her acclaimed Southern-inspired restaurant and bakery, Willa Jean in New Orleans, in 2015, where she has been nominated three times for a James Beard Award for Outstanding Pastry Chef.

2015 James Beard Award winner for Best Chef: Southwest, Aaron Franklin, is one of the most influential pitmasters in the U.S. His legendary Franklin Barbecue in Austin, TX has won every major BBQ award, including honors from Bon Appétit and Texas Monthly, and the restaurant has been celebrated by everyone from Jimmy Kimmel to President Obama. But when you ask Franklin what makes his BBQ so good, he’ll tell you conscientious sourcing.

Chef Justin Wu, who opened his new concept, 28-seat Theodore Rex in Houston, TX last fall, won the James Beard Award for Best Chef: Southwest in 2016 for his acclaimed restaurant Oxheart. At Theodore Rex, Wu focuses on regional ingredients to create inventive Texas-inspired dishes.

With San Antonio’s recent designation as a “Creative City of Gastronomy” by UNESCO, it’s important to look back on the city’s culinary past and its most respected culinary leaders. Since 1985, Chef Bruce Auden, currently of Biga on the Banks, has continuously inspired San Antonio chefs and restaurateurs through his many culinary ventures, earning seven Beard nominations along the way.

When McHugh was in treatment, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society provided him with priceless support. Now in remission, he serves on the organization’s South Central Texas Chapter board of trustees. Last year’s Cured for a Cure dinner raised an astonishing $81K, and this year, McHugh hopes to again increase his charitable giving to the organization that was so integral to his own healing.

In addition to the participating chefs and their generous dinner guests, there are numerous sponsors whose support will make this goal possible: Pearl Brewery, Mission Restaurant Supply, The RK Group, Hotel Emma, Cosmo Technology Rentals, Santikos Theatres, and Ranger Creek Brewing.

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