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Mayor Lee Launches the 2017 Chengdu Food And Culture Festival

Acclaimed chefs from Chengdu to partner with local restaurants to showcase gourmet Sichuan cuisine in the Bay Area

San Francisco, CA – Mayor Edwin M. Lee, Vice Mayor Liu Xiao Liu of Chengdu, China and other dignitaries today celebrated the official kickoff of the 2017 Chengdu Food and Culture Festival in the San Francisco Bay Area.

“The people of San Francisco and Chengdu share many cultural similarities, including a deep appreciation for great food,” said Mayor Lee. “We are excited to continue and expand our success from last year in promoting Sichuan cuisine. Food is a universal language that helps bond people from different places together.”

This year’s gala will feature authentic Chengdu cuisine, special brews, dancers, opera performers and other artists visiting from Chengdu. The Chengdu Food and Cultural Festival kickoff at City Hall will feature drinks and a full tasting menu served from multiple food stations, all staffed by Chengdu’s top chefs and assisted by some of the Bay Area’s most renowned chefs. Bay Area cooking icon Martin Yan of Yan Can Cook is overseeing the entire culinary operation.

“It’s a special honor to work with such great culinary talents,” said Yan. “I am learning so much from my Chengdu and Bay Area colleagues and I am very grateful for such a privilege.”

The 2017 festival will run for two weeks. After the opening night gala, there will be “Chengdu Days” around the Bay Area. On November 2, the festival will visit the International House at UC Berkeley, showcasing an evening of Chengdu cuisine and entertainment for UC Berkeley students and officials. The Chengdu delegation will also visit various Bay Area technology companies to promote Chengdu cuisine and culture.

In addition, there will be three Chengdu-themed dinners open to the general public. This year’s list of restaurants will be M.Y. China in San Francisco, Koi Palace in Milpitas and Chef Chu’s in Los Altos. Each restaurant will feature a different Chengdu-inspired menu for their evening.

As an outreach to the future generations of San Francisco, the city of Chengdu has sent 300 clay panda statues to the San Francisco Unified School District. Students from various elementary schools have decorated the pandas and a selection of the pandas will be featured at the gala in City Hall. Pandas are native to Sichuan Province in China. Chengdu is the provincial capital of Sichuan and designated as the City of Gastronomy by UNESCO in 2010.