Guests smile for a photo as they await their first steaming bowl of soup. Photo by Rowa Lee
What happens when hundreds of people gather for a one-pot meal in a restaurant without walls? Things get a little cozy.
The High Line's fourth-annual Social Soup Experiment took place on October 18, and once again proved that good food and good company are a recipe for success. This year’s event included fresh bread from Sullivan Street Bakery, butter from Organic Valley, apples from Montgomery Place Orchards, and the piece de resistance – a ribollita soup prepared with produce from Union Square Greenmarket.
The hearty Italian vegetable soup was made by Chef Marco Canora, of Hearth Restaurant and Terroir wine bar. It pulled off a relative culinary miracle, satisfying vegans, carnivores, and the gluten-free.
While attendees rubbed elbows and enjoyed soup, we took the sharing one step further by asking them to finish these thoughts: “Autumn is not complete without . . . , ” “My favorite family recipe is . . . ,” and “If I had a garden, I would grow . . . .” Answers were written on nametags and stuck to a giant sheet of paper – ensuring that a few diners walked away with a secret chili recipe.
All in all, it was a beautiful autumn day to share a meal and, hopefully, make a few new friends.
Chef Marco Canora displaying top-notch multitasking skills as he prepares the ribollita soup. Photo by Rowa Lee
A High Line volunteer serves soup to guests. Photo by Rowa Lee
Seconds? Thirds? The ribollita was a hit with this table. Photo by Rowa Lee
A spoonful of fresh parmigiana makes all the difference. Photo by Rowa Lee
Guests conversed with their neighbors throughout the meal. Photo by Rowa Lee
These are the smiles of satisfied diners. Photo by Rowa Lee
Guests concluded their meal with a contribution to our wall. Photo by Rowa Lee