There’s a sort of camaraderie that you feel when you walk onto a subway with other people dressed in all white after Labor Day, more so than you would with the No Pants Subway Ride or SantaCon. This is the feeling of community that you get when participating in Le Diner en Blanc in NYC.
The in-demand luxury outdoor dining experience has a waitlist of over 40,000, but only 5,000 lucky New Yorkers get to attend. As a veteran attendee of three years, I felt very fortunate to again be part of such an exclusive group that consists mainly of those that have attended before, friends of attendees and then turns to waves of the waitlist.
Crowds of white marched from the subway to Robert Wagner Jr. Park to celebrate the 6th annual celebration, complete with tables, chairs and over the top attire. Chef Todd English curated the seasonal menu again this year, while Apothic Wine and Moet & Chandon provided the libations.
This year’s space, which for us was above Gigino, faced the water and had a nice surprise element of a boat that conducted a water show to music. I observed from a bird’s eye view a sea of white, who were all reveling in toasting to each other under the stars.
I had the opportunity to speak with Le Diner en Blanc Co-Founder Aymeric Pasquier once again this year and asked what had changed between this year and last year. He had replied that while some elements had stayed constant and the concept has never changed, having a different location every year is important to evoke a difference ambiance for each event. The music also changes, which is consistently a mixture of live music, followed by a DJ, and this year that honor went to Whitney Day.
Le Diner en Blanc will continue their US tour with Apothic Wine at 6 additional cities this year. When I asked Pasquier how many of the events he attends out of the now 70 cities the event has expanded to, he shared that while it would be impossible to go to each one, he does try to attend first editions of the event. Some of these first edition events included Singapore, Mexico City and Australia, where the dinner took place with a view of the Opera House. Pasquier noted how important it is to see this connection happen in these cities firsthand and watch an idea honored that started 30 years ago.
Pictures courtesy of Stephanie Carino, Jane Kratochvil, Eric Vitale, and Jennifer Heffner/Vita Images