Restaurants and food businesses around the world are mobilizing in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, whether by raising funds to feed refugees or providing other support in the form of money, supplies, or solidarity.
Restaurateur José Andrés’s World Central Kitchen, a nonprofit food relief organization that has become particularly well-known during the pandemic but dates back to 2010, is on the ground in Poland feeding Ukrainians fleeing across the border. The group is also working in Odesa, Ukraine, and sending volunteers to other nearby countries for extra help.
Locally, World Central Kitchen is a typical target for restaurant industry fundraisers in times of crisis, and it’s no different this time. Massachusetts-based pierogi company Jaju Pierogi, for example, donated $1000 to World Central Kitchen after pledging 20% of one day of sales in late February; La Saison Bakery in Cambridge held a sourdough bake sale on March 2, 2022, to support World Central Kitchen’s efforts in and around Ukraine; Belmont-based Yum Bunnies Cakery donated $5 of sales from each of its funfetti cake jars for two days in March; Medford bagel shop Goldilox designated the organization as the weekly target of its “lox love” donation drive for a weekend of orders; and Kings Dining & Entertainment offered a special $50 unlimited bowling package at all of its Massachusetts locations for one day in March, with 100% of the proceeds donated to World Central Kitchen.
Boston-area businesses are donating elsewhere, too. Downtown wine bar Haley Henry, for example, gave (and matched) its March 2, 2022, proceeds from its weekly hot dog special to the Ukrainian Crisis Relief Fund by GlobalGiving. “As Ukrainians continue to fight for their land, their freedoms, and their democracy, we can’t help but try to find a way to help in whatever way we can,” the bar posted. And up in Lynn, Nightshade Noodle Bar donated profits from its Moon Rabbit cocktail on the weekend of March 5, 2022, to UNICEF in support of its work providing Ukrainian children with safe water, healthcare, and more.
Below, find ongoing opportunities to donate to various organizations in support of Ukraine, as well as other updates and messages of support from local food businesses. This list will be updated; email [email protected] with any information.
Specific Upcoming Fundraising Dates
203A Broadway, Arlington
As part of Bakers Against Racism’s #BakeForUkraine initiative, Breadboard started selling blue-and-yellow peace sign cookies and sour cherry sunflower sourdough in early March to raise money for CARE in support of its work in Ukraine, with all proceeds from these two items going to the organization. As of this roundup’s most recent update on March 10, the cookies are out of stock, but loaves of the bread are still available to order.
Griddle & Grill
384 South Main St., Sharon
For the week of March 7, the restaurant is serving a variety of traditional Ukrainian dishes, with proceeds going toward refugee aid. Financial donations are also welcome on an ongoing basis. Watch for updates on social media.
A&B Kitchen & Bar
115 Beverly St., West End, Boston; 206 Cabot St., Beverly
From March 8 through 22, both A&B locations are offering a Ukraine-inspired cocktail, milkshake, and dessert, with 100% of the proceeds of these three items being donated to World Central Kitchen. Along the blue and yellow theme, the cocktail features Tito’s vodka, pineapple and lemon juice, simple syrup, and blue curacao; the milkshake is blueberry with yellow vanilla frosting; and the dessert is blueberry cake with lemon-infused flan, a creme anglaise sauce, and blueberries.
928 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge
Starting March 9 and running for a week, Pammy’s is featuring a cocktail called the Sunflower, with all sales of it going to World Central Kitchen.
1 Kendall Sq., Cambridge; 1659 Beacon St., Brookline; 100 High St., Boston
During the week leading up to Purim (Purim falls on the evening of March 16 to the evening of March 17 this year), Mamaleh’s will have hamantaschen available and will donate 10% of hamantaschen sales to the Polish Humanitarian Action in support of the assistance it is providing to Ukrainian refugees at the Polish border. It’s part of an international effort called Hamantashen for Ukraine.
543 Commonwealth Ave., Newton
Like Mamaleh’s, Blacker’s is participating in Hamantashen for Ukraine and is donating a portion of its hamantaschen sales this Purim.
Sofra Bakery & Cafe
1 Belmont St., Cambridge
Sofra is also participating in Hamantashen for Ukraine. For the week of March 7, the bakery will sell boxes of six chocolate sesame hamantaschen made with tahini, cocoa, and halva for $15, with all proceeds going to the Polish Humanitarian Action. The boxes will be available for walk-in orders at the cafe and preorders online.
Alden & Harlow
40 Brattle St., Cambridge
The Harvard Square restaurant will donate 35% of brunch sales from March 12 and 13 to World Central Kitchen, with chef and owner Michael Scelfo matching the total donation, up to $5,000.
Laughing Monk Cafe
737 Huntington Ave., Boston
The Brigham Circle Thai and Japanese restaurant is donating 10% of sales on March 18 and 19 to World Central Kitchen.
50 Lovejoy Wharf, Boston
For the month of March 2022, Alcove is featuring a cocktail called Nightingale’s Flight, a riff on a classic Aviation named for Ukraine’s official bird and featuring a house-made citron vodka. $1 from each Nightingale’s Flight purchased will be donated to World Central Kitchen. “We all want to do something to show our support for Ukraine,” said principal bartender Will Piquette via press release. “Our team came together and agreed it was important to raise money to assist Chef Jose Andres and his miraculous WCK; his teams are already on the ground preparing hot meals for the Ukrainian refugees fleeing the assault. Together we created this beautiful cocktail which actually has the soft glow evocative of the Ghost of Kyiv (whether the ghost is real or urban legend); we support the Ukrainian people and their spirit.”
European Bakery & Pastry
29 Millbury St., Worcester
The bakery is donating 100% of the proceeds from its Ukrainian paska bread to World Central Kitchen. The bread is available on Fridays and Saturdays through Easter, and the fundraiser will continue the whole time. Call (508) 767-1651 to pre-order; it’s been selling out fast. As of the March 10 update to this roundup, the bakery had already raised over $2500.
Aeronaut Brewing Co.
14 Tyler St., Somerville; 199 Ashland St., Everett
Aeronaut has partnered with the Federation of Beer and its Brew for Ukraine initiative to raise funds for CARE’s Ukraine Crisis Fund, releasing Red Eyes, a collaboration with Pravda Beer Theatre from Lviv, Ukraine. 100% of proceeds from Red Eyes will be donated to the cause. Aeronaut vendor and partner donations of ingredients and materials toward production of the beer have allowed the brewery to make an advance donation of $4000, with more to come.
32 Wood Rd., Braintree
The bakery is selling special cupcakes (order online) with 100% of proceeds benefiting the Save the Children Foundation, which is working to deliver humanitarian aid to Ukraine and beyond. Konditor Meister is also matching the amount raised.
Curio Spice Co.
2265 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge
Local spice company Curio Spice Co. has set a goal of a $5000 donation to World Central Kitchen. For each signature spice blend purchased at the $20 donation price or each Curio tote purchased, the company will donate $15. Local pickup and shipping are available.
Andrew Janjigian aka @wordloaf
Central Square, Cambridge
The America’s Test Kitchen alum who now publishes his own “breaducational” newsletter is running a rolling bake sale over the next few weeks, offering several different loaves of bread for pickup in Central Square; find the full details here. (As of the March 10 update to this roundup, Janigian’s bake sale was currently sold out, but he was considering baking more, so watch his newsletter for updates.) He’s also teaching an online workshop on March 15 demoing soda bread recipes, with 50% of the proceeds from the class donated to Ukraine relief. The first run of his bake sale generated $280, which he donated to World Central Kitchen.
Crepes Tea House
261 Union St., West Springfield; 157 Feeding Hills Rd., Southwick
The duo of European teahouses is donating a portion of sales to various organizations supporting humanitarian work in Ukraine. “This war is affecting us since most of our employees are from that region or have family ties there,” Crepes announced. “As an Eastern European restaurant we believe that we have a moral obligation to support the Ukrainian people during this difficult time.”
7 Pond St., Jamaica Plain
Tokava Coffee is helping raise money for the shop’s friends Tien Le and Tomek Duszyk, who are buying medical supplies not available in countries neighboring Ukraine and sending them to Warsaw to friends who are retired border guard officers. Donations are accepted via Venmo, and customers are also welcome to bring the requested medical supplies to the cafe (CAT tourniquets, emergency bandages, and Celox gauze). Donate to this fund or any organization supporting Ukraine and get a free filter coffee. Details and updates on Instagram. (Tokava is able to continue offering the free coffee thanks to donations from Tiny Arms Coffee Roasters in Lowell and Broadsheet Coffee in Cambridge, co-owner Natalie Gaida tells Eater.)
Lucie Drink & Dine
120 Huntington Ave., Boston
502 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge
In honor of a longtime Viale employee from Ukraine whose family is still there, Viale is encouraging donations to a fund that will go toward food, medicine, ammunition, and other necessary equipment for Ukrainians. The restaurant will also donate and match $2 from every Free Ukraine cocktail sold.
424 Cambridge St., Boston; 1432 Beacon St., Brookline; 30 Tower Rd., Newton; 855 Worcester St., Framingham
The company behind four local Russian and European grocery stores (the Newton one goes by the name Baza) has announced that it will stop purchasing and importing Russian products. “We are reaching out to you in these trying times not only as your local business but also as a part of your community that cannot remain ignorant to current events.”
Cafe St. Petersburg
57 Union St., Newton
The Russian restaurant in Newton Center has released the following statement: “Our restaurant has been in existence for over 28 years in Boston. I have had the privilege to get to know many wonderful Russians and Ukrainians. I am blessed to be part of a very large Russian speaking community that came to the US from all over the former soviet union. Myself included. I think I speak for the majority of us when I say that we are devastated and condemn the attacks that Russia is inflicting upon Ukraine. Unprovoked attacks on a sovereign nation should not be allowed and we hope those responsible will be held accountable. To those in Ukraine just know our thoughts and prayers are with you.” The restaurant also noted that it is working on organizing a fundraiser; more details to come.
10 Vernon St., Wakefield
Pitstop’s ownership is Ukrainian and has been sharing updates on social media, including several calls to action. For example, people can contact their local representatives and ask them to convey to the government that Ukraine needs protection, medical supplies, and military supplies. Plus, the National Bank of Ukraine has created an account that accepts deposits “for the needs of the military and civilians,” the Pitstop team posted, promising to post information about other organizations in the future.