Chef David Burke Honored At Hamptons Happening

David Burke is one of the most well known chefs in the world. The New Jersey Native is a pioneer of American cooking — the only American to be honored with Meilleurs Ouvriers de France Diplome d’Honneur. He has authored two cookbooks and has been a guest on countless cooking shows. He also often lends his name and talents to charitable causes. His #FeedtheHeroes campaign delivered 100,000 meals to charities and frontline workers during the Covid-19 pandemic.

This year Chef David Burke will be honored alongside HUGO BOSS Fashions, Dr. Kenneth Mark, and Natalie Cohen Gould at the 17th annual Hamptons Happening fundraiser to benefit the Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation on July 10 in Bridgehampton. We caught up with Burke to learn more.

Congratulations on being honored. How did you become involved with the Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation’s Hamptons Happening Event?

[This year’s Hamptons Happening Co-chair] Mark Friedman.

Why is cancer research important to you?

It’s important to find solutions to problems, and to help people. My father recently had cancer and I have supported the foundation for a long time. I have been involved at a variety of levels for years.

What are you most looking forward to at this year’s event?

Supporting the cause, and trying to raise as much as possible to beat the disease. Seeing old friends, meeting new, and being able to collaborate and celebrate after a terrible year and half with a sense of normalcy, and giving back the way we are accustomed to and how know.

Tell us a little about how you got started as a chef:

I was a dishwasher at a young age and loved the energy of a kitchen. The way everyone comes together in the heat of the moment all with the effort.

You’re a rock star in the culinary world. Tell us a little about your latest restaurant, Orchard Park by David Burke:

It was so nice to collaborate with a world class designer, Lemay + Escobar to build a world-class place, rivaling anything in the state of New Jersey from design and culture stand point.

Tell us a little about your cooking demos & LeftobyDB:

As a chef, we are rarely home to cook in our home kitchens, but the pandemic provided the time and space to do so. Lefto was a puppet designed after me that had been collecting dust for some time. When I started to cook in my home, I decided I needed a buddy to keep me company and since I am not used to cooking for a table of one, eat my leftovers!

How has the pandemic shifted business for you?

The pandemic created many new revenue streams for my team and I that I had not been exploring; Private cooking classes for the home chef, team meetings with cooking demos, meal kits with my recipes mailed in conjunction with live demonstration.

Talk a little about #FeedtheHeroes, a program that cooked and delivered 100,000 meals to frontline workers and charities:

The best way we know how to provide support is through food. When we had no restaurants open and no funds coming in, we shifted to raising money from our local markets and turned those dollars into meals for the frontlines and those in need. It was an incredibly fulfilling way to put ourselves to work and help.

What’s your go-to dish?

To cook, it’s roast duck. My comfort food is an Italian Hero.

What do you like to enjoy when you’re in the Hamptons? Any favorite restaurants or businesses you visit?

Stay at house, order Honest Plate. Carissa’s bakery — a former pastry chef of mine. T-Bar is always great.


Jessica Mackin-Cipro


Jessica Mackin-Cipro is an editor and lifestyle writer from the East End of Long Island. She has won NYPA and PCLI awards for journalism and social media. She was previously the Executive Editor of The Independent Newspaper.

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