On the wild side

"Feast with the Beasts" was for real

"Feast with the Beasts" was for real

News_Feast 2009_Bill Wright
Bill Wright gets his feast on. Stephanie Adams/Houston Zoo
Places_Food_Little Bigs_pulled pork sliders
Little Bigs' pulled pork sliders Carlos Meltzer
News_Feast 2009_Marc Shapiro_Jeri Shapiro_Kathy Goossen_Marty Goossen
Marc and Jeri Shapiro, left, with Kathy and Marty Goossen Stephanie Adams/Houston Zoo
News_Feast 2009_Ted Lao_Cheryl Lao
Ted and Cheryl Lao Stephanie Adams/Houston Zoo
News_Feast 2009_Rafael Nolasco_Rod Ryan of 94.5 The Buzz_Maria Nolasco
Rafael Nolasco, from left, Rod Ryan of 94.5 The Buzz and Maria Nolasco Stephanie Adams/Houston Zoo
News_Feast 2009_Bill Wright
Places_Food_Little Bigs_pulled pork sliders
News_Feast 2009_Marc Shapiro_Jeri Shapiro_Kathy Goossen_Marty Goossen
News_Feast 2009_Ted Lao_Cheryl Lao
News_Feast 2009_Rafael Nolasco_Rod Ryan of 94.5 The Buzz_Maria Nolasco

The lions supped on turkeys, the African wild dogs on a 50-pound slab of meat.

Yum.

Guests at Houston Zoo's "Feast with the Beasts" had their choice of more civilized fare presented by 51 restaurants that set up food stations across the zoo landscape. The sellout crowd of 3,000 grooved on the shrimp and cheese grits from Ouisie's and swooned over the lamb from Kiran's.

Gigi's Asian Bistro & Dumpling Bar, Benjy's, Cavatore and Little Bigs were among the providers for this fourth annual fundraiser. Jackson & Co. offered Tex-Mex specialties in the VIP section around the reflection pool. At $125 per ticket, the 350 slots were spoken for early on. The beauty of this cordoned-off space was it provided a place to sit at a fancy table and short lines for food and drink.

Few among the crowd were truly disturbed by the sight of nature taking its course along the food chain. In fact, many hurried over to catch a glimpse of the Komodo dragon devouring a turkey. All total, there were nine animal presentations.

Chairs Deborah Cannon, Houston Zoo, and Frank Crapitto, proprietor of Frank's Chop House and Crapitto's Cucina Italiano, oversaw the hugely successful evening. Among bold-faced types in the jean-clad crowd were Jennifer Miller and Dr. Fred Aguilar, Jeri and Marc Shapiro, Kathy and Marty Goossen, Bill Wright, Jennifer LeGrand, Katherine Orellana and Carlos Meltzer.