Blind date

On Sunday January 26, from 1 to 4 p.m., Via Vanti! Restaurant & Gelateria in Mount Kisco will host “Dining in the Dark,” Westchester’s first of its kind “blind dining” experience to support Guiding Eyes for the Blind. A five-course tasting menu plus gelato will be served. Guests will be offered blindfolds to test just how discriminating their taste buds are, with prizes awarded to the diners with the savviest palates.

“We wanted to create a delicious menu with interesting, harmonious flavors and flavor contrasts, textures and aromas to heighten the mindfulness of the diners,” says Via Vanti! owner Carla Gambescia. “Not only is ‘Dining in the Dark’ a fun and unique experience, it’s also for a great cause.”

For someone without sight, a Guiding Eyes dog is a priceless, life-changing gift providing independence, companionship and mobility. Headquartered in Yorktown Heights, Guiding Eyes for the Blind provides guide dogs, professional training and follow-up support services to blind and visually impaired individuals around the world at no cost to them, depending solely on contributions to fulfill its mission. Additionally, Guiding Eyes’ Heeling Autism Program places specially trained service dogs with children on the autism spectrum.

“Guiding Eyes is excited about the opportunity to raise the awareness of our mission by partnering with Via Vanti! for this total sensory experience,” says Sue Dishart, vice president of marketing and development.

“Dining in the Dark” is $75 per person. Seating is limited and reservations are required. Via Vanti! Restaurant & Gelateria is located at 2 Kirby Plaza. For more information or to reserve your space, contact Via Vanti! at (914) 666-6400 or visit

For more on Guiding Eyes for the Blind, visit (And you can always refer to WAG’s November 2013 cover story, featuring football star Eli Manning and his work on behalf of the organization).


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