Pizza and Philanthropy - There Really is No Down Side


What do pizza, chocolate, coffee, and Indiana grad student Arwen Kimmell have in common? Give up?

They will all be a part of Slow Food's fundraising event at the not-yet-opened Georgetown Via Tribunali this Saturday.

Slow Food, a non-profit organization with goals based around the sustainability, quality, and fair production of food -- "a shift away from industrial food systems," says the organization's website -- puts together an international meeting of the food community every year. The event, known as Terra Madre, unites farmers, growers, and other gastronomically inclined folks from over 130 countries.

This year, the national organization selected Arwen Kimmell, a delegate from our neck of the woods, to represent the United States at Terra Madre 08 in Turin, Italy. Slow Food covers everything but airfare, and since Kimmell is a grad student (read: most likely closer to broke than the average bear) and airfare is . . . well, airfare . . . the local chapter is doing what they can for her in the months until her departure in October.

Kimmell, a fan of scones and responsible decision-making, relocated from the Midwest to the Northwest a year ago to work on her dissertation, which investigates "impacts of sustainable initiatives by companies in the United States on local coffee and cocoa farmers in West Africa," as she outlined in a recent grant proposal. She says she hopes her trip to Turin will help her gain insight for the endeavor.

Those interested in smoothing her way will get a sneak preview of the much-anticipated Via Tribunali Georgetown as well as some high-quality coffee, wine, pizza, and chocolate courtesy of sponsors Caffe Vita, Theo Chocolate, and, naturally, Via Trib.

Tix are $20 for Slow Food members and $25 for nonmembers. A search for further details and a place to buy tickets will end at


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