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Earlier in December my husband and I joined the 8th Annual Latke Festival, a large tasting event dedicated to celebrating the best latkes and creative interpretations of a potato pancake in New York City.

This year it was held at the Brooklyn Museum. It was nice to leave the borough of Manhattan for a while and visit Brooklyn for this festival.

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Honestly? I always had a weird thing about potato pancakes. When I was a kid, I had some REALLY bad ones and I have not really enjoyed them since. You are probably wondering why I would attend a latke festival if I don’t like potato pancakes. Well, it is simple really. I have a rule of trying something at least 3 times before I call it quits and since I have not tried potato pancakes since, I still had two times to go.

This time won me over – or, should I say, Shelsky’s of Brooklyn won me over. I simply LOOOOVED their latke with honey mustard, caraway seeds, sour cream and gravlax and lots of it. It was not a surprise that they won the people’s choice and came in second with the judges.

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I had a duck confit latke made by Benchmark first, which I also loved. It was delicious and a complete combo surprise that just made me think comfort food instantly. I tasted every single latke that was offered that evening and I must admit, I went between the Duck Confit Latke and the Latke with Gravlax the entire evening. They were so yummy. The Benchmark latke was elected the winner by the judges.

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The judges consisted of Alicia Glen, the Deputy Mayor of New York; Angela Moore of the Food Network; Arthur Bovino from mouth.com; Bret Thorn from Nation’s Restaurant News; Channaly Philipp from Epoch Taste; David Berliner of the Brooklyn Museum; Jake Dell of Katz’s DelicatessenKurt Anderson, novelist and host of Studio 360; Linda Laviolette, NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets; and Ralph Gardner Jr from the Wall Street Journal.

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Proceeds from ticket sales went towards The Sylvia Center. The Sylvia Center is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that addresses the growing epidemic of childhood obesity and diet-related diseases by inspiring children, teens and families to eat well through hands-on experiences on the farm and in the kitchen. I therefore urge you to attend next year! Not only will you support an amazing organization but have a fabulous evening with amazing food and lots and lots of drinks. Bring your friends and make a night of it!

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– Line

Photos via the Latke Festival