November 25, 2011 9:32 pm

Let’s do lunch: Dine with an FT writer

This year’s Seasonal Appeal includes the mouth-watering opportunity to lunch with our star writers

Do you dream of talking wine with Jancis Robinson, the FT’s wine correspondent, over lunch at a top London restaurant? Would you like a personal briefing on the global situation over a meal with Martin Wolf, our chief economic commentator? Or lunch in New York with Gillian Tett, our US managing editor and columnist?

For the second year running, the FT joins forces with some of the world’s leading restaurants to offer readers the chance to bid for lunches with two dozen of our star writers and editors, all in the cause of charity. Proceeds of the online auction, to be hosted by Ebay from December 1 to 11, will go to Sightsavers, which fights blindness in the developing world.

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Last year, thanks to readers’ generosity, we raised a remarkable £45,000 from our restaurant auction in aid of the charity Action Against Hunger. We aim to raise even more this year, since we have added restaurants and FT writers around the world, in Paris, New York, Hong Kong and Berlin.

We are very grateful to the restaurants that have agreed to take part, each donating lunch for two – the winner of the auction and the FT writer paired with the restaurant. All accepted speedily, even though Sightsavers may not be one of their designated charities.

The FT’s highly respected food and drink team will all be up for auction: Jancis Robinson, one of the world’s leading authorities on wine; Rowley Leigh, our cooking columnist who is also a professional chef in London; and Nick Lander, our restaurant correspondent and a former restaurateur.

Restaurants taking part include Le Gavroche, The Ivy, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, and Bistrot Bruno Loubet in London; Le Bernardin and The Modern in New York; The Principal in Hong Kong; Il Vino d’Enrico Bernardo in Paris and Fischers Fritz in Berlin.

The FT lunchers include Lionel Barber, the editor; Lucy Kellaway, our management columnist; Gideon Rachman, our foreign affairs columnist; Philip Stephens, our political columnist; Gillian De Bono, editor of How to Spend It magazine; Merryn Somerset Webb, our personal finance columnist; and Mrs Moneypenny, the inimitable columnist for this magazine.

Standard Chartered bank is generously matching donations to the FT appeal, pound for pound, and the British government is doing the same for contributions from the UK public. So successful lunch bidders could see their donations tripled – a huge incentive for giving.

For full details of the FT lunchers, the restaurants they are paired with, and terms and condition of the auction, go to www.ebay.co.uk/ftappeal

For more information on Sightsavers and the FT’s coverage of the charity go to www.ft.com/appeal

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