Chicago Food Community Comes Together to Help One of its Own

Hot chocolate is sure to be on the menu at this fundraiser

The Chicago food community is pretty tight-knit. There are often fundraisers held for chefs, busboys and cooks needing to settle medical bills and insurance. But an upcoming event on March 31 is sure to be one of the most heartfelt fundraisers Chicago’s culinary fraternity has ever held.


A few weeks ago, chef Dean Zanella (312, Rhapsody) who’s been cooking here for some 20 years, lost his wife, Mary, eight days after giving birth to twins. His daughters – Anna and Nora – survived. The shock of this news has led to an outpouring of support from his colleagues. So on March 31, Mindy Segal (Hot Chocolate) is hosting a blowout fundraiser to help out with the children’s trust fund.


Segal has recruited friends Bill Kim (Urban Belly, Belly Shack, Belly Q), Heather Terhune (Sable), John Manion (La Sirena Clandestina), Tony Priolo (Piccolo Sogno), Rob Levitt (Butcher & Larder), Takashi Yagihashi (Takashi, Slurping Turtle), Giuseppe Tentori (GT Fish & Oyster) among others, to help create a $200 per person dinner at her restaurant, located at 1747 N. Damen. There will also be a silent auction, including prizes such as tickets to Broadway in Chicago shows, a dine-around in Park Slope, Brooklyn (Talde, Pork Slope, Thistle Hill Tavern); VIP package at Metro and magnums of Moet & Chandon.


After the dinner, there will be an afterparty at Big Star, where they’re donating a portion of the proceeds to the trust fund.


To reserve a space call 773-489-1747. Note: cash or check only.


If you wanted to simply make a donation:


Zanella Children Trust Fund

℅ State Bank of Countryside, Attn: Mary McNally

15980 Parker Rd., Homer Glen, IL 60491