The annual citywide event will held Nov. 7 at Steven's Institute of Technology. Now in its 16th year, it has become one of the most popular social gatherings in Hoboken. More than 40 restaurants, cafes, and pastry shops will participate. Last year the event helped raise $51,000, with about 700 attending.
Julie Gallanty, executive director for the North Hudson YMCA on Washington Street, said she expects more people this year.
"We want to serve great food and create a strong sense of community," Gallanty said.
Helping the community
What started as a modest fundraiser to help support the YMCA has become an annual event packed with excellent food, wine and fun. A Taste of Hoboken is the town's premiere showcase for local cuisine. Event organizers are expecting a turnout of more than 700 people from Hoboken and the surrounding area. Also, each year the lineup of restaurants increases.
This year's establishments include: Ali Baba, Amanda's, Anthony David's, Aramark, Bangkok City, Chart House, Brass Rail, Company, Court Street, DaVinci's, Dining Room, Dom's Bakery, Gaslight, Fedway, East LA, Wolfgang Puck, Vale, Three A's, Oddfellows Rest, Liberty, La Scala, La Isla, Frankie and Johnnies, the Madison, Starbucks, Karma Kafe, India on the Hudson, Puerto Spain and Ganache.
"It's one of the most talked about events of the year," Gallanty said. When Taste of Hoboken first started, it was held in the gymnasium of the YMCA on Washington Street. For the past several years, it has been held at the Stevens Institute of Technology at Castle Point on Hudson. The YMCA was established in the mile-square city in 1927. Since its arrival, they have provided athletic, recreational and community programs for area residents. Fifteen years ago, the Hoboken North Hudson YMCA's Board of Directors thought up the plans for establishing a fundraiser that would showcase the town's restaurants. As a result, A Taste of Hoboken was born, and began very modestly with the support of a few eateries. Less than 150 people attended, according to Gallanty. Through the years, Hoboken residents began to speak highly about the event, which featured samples from some of the city's top restaurants at an affordable price.
A decade ago, organizers decided to transfer the event to the campus of Stevens. The fundraiser then began to feature more than two dozen restaurants, attracting more than 500 people.
"More restaurants have taken part in the event in recent years," she said. "They want to be a part of something positive."
Located at 1301 Washington St., the YMCA has become an important part of the mile-square city. Last year they awarded 21 children with summer camp scholarships, 14 children with after-school scholarships, and 41 memberships to low income families.
"The YMCA is a community service association dedicated to building a healthy spirit, mind, and body for men, women and children of all ages, incomes, abilities, races and religions," Gallanty said.
There is a swimming pool at the YMCA, which allows for adult and youth swimming instructions, adult aqua-aerobics, classes, pre-natal aquatic classes, and lap and family swim time. There are also adult fitness classes such as aerobics, kickboxing and yoga.
"My kids learned to swim at the 'Y,' " said Gallanty.
The YMCA also offers workshops highlighting the diverse interests of the community, including photography, wine tasting, cooking demonstrations, and wellness and relaxation seminars.
Tickets for Taste of Hoboken are $50 for general admission which is from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. and $75 for the champagne preview from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tickets are on sale and can be purchased at the YMCA's membership desk or the Hudson Reporter offices at 1400 Washington St. in Hoboken. For information call (201) 963-4100.