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Taste Of Stamford Delights For 23rd Straight Year

Jack Condlin, right, president and CEO of the Stamford Chamber of Commerce, with from left: Francois Kwaku-Dongo, Jessica Magdalinos and Melissa DeSousa from David's Soundview Catering at the 23rd Annual Taste of Stamford event Thursday. Photo Credit: Frank MacEachern
Myrna Yanni, center, owner of Myrna's Kitchen that specializes in Lebanese and Mediterranean food, along with her uncle Sam Yanni and friend Nadine Hokayem, at the Taste of Stamford Thursday night. Photo Credit: Frank MacEachern
Joe Cingari, center, owner of ShopRite, stands with Charlie Lim, owner of all the sushi bars in the ShopRite stores, and sushi chef Sherry Wang at the Taste of Stamford Thursday. Photo Credit: Frank MacEachern

STAMFORD, Conn., -- For Myrna Yanni, the Taste of Stamford annual food event is an important way for her to to reach people who may not know much about Lebanese and Mediterranean food.

"We have been in business for 14 years and this is our 14th year (at the event)," she said in between serving people Thursday evening at the Stamford Marriott Hotel and Spa at 243 Tresser Blvd.

Lebanese food relies on vegetables, fruits, seafood, olive oil, garlic and herbs to create a healthy meal that is a delight to eat without relying on red meat or animal fats, she said.

"We are different from pizza, burgers and hot dogs," Yanni said.

The annual event is a huge draw and regularly attracts anywhere from between 500 and 1,000 people, said Jack Condlin, president and CEO of the Stamford Chamber of Commerce.

"It's because of the food," he said about what brings people out. 'The people are here for the food."

He said it gives restaurants a chance to show off their specialties to people who may not have tried them.

The event is a fundraiser for the chamber's "Kids Our Future" educational outreach at city schools, he said.

Taste of Stamford had everything from pastries to pulled pork to pizza and everything in between, including beer and wine for people to sample.

One of the city's most prominent businesses, ShopRite, owned by the Cingari family also was represented at the event as it had a table filled with sushi.

"We have been part of the community for three generations and we are happy to support the chamber," said Joe Cingari, the supermarket's owner.

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