Q & A: Rick Bayless

Rick Bayless

Tonight we'll be tuning in to the premiere of Bravo's Top Chef Masters to root for all the contestants who are JBF Award winners or nominees. Among them is Rick Bayless, whose restaurant, Frontera Grill, won the medal for Outstanding Restaurant in 2007. He's competing for his charity, Frontera Farmer Foundation, which supports small Midwestern farms that practice sustainability. We caught up with the Chicago-based chef at last year's JBF Awards gala, when the event's theme was "Artisanal America."

James Beard Foundation: What would you eat for your last meal on earth? Rick Bayless: Something in a tortilla for sure. JBF: What’s your earliest food memory? RB: Peeling peaches with my grandmother. JBF: What’s your favorite regional ingredient? ... Read more >

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Eye Candy: Beard House

Georgia Pecan Panna Cotta

Georgia pecan panna cotta with strawberry–rhubarb jam, the finale of Atlanta chef Carvel Grant Gould's Beard House dinner. May 14, 2009, The Beard House, NYC (Photo by Michael Johnston)

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The Bookshelf: A Year of Wine

A Year of WineAuthor of the highly praised Dr. Vino blog, Tyler Colman brings a budget-conscious and highly seasonal approach to wine that guarantees greater enjoyment. In anticipation of Colman’s appearance at tomorrow’s Beard on Books, we asked the wine expert and author of A Year of Wine: Perfect Pairings, Great Buys, and What to Sip for Each Season for his top summer wine picks. La Spinetta, Moscato d'Asti (about $15) This is probably the ultimate wine for sipping poolside with a light fizz, peachy aromas, and five percent alcohol. Because it is slightly sweet, it's also a perfect wine for newbies. Wild Rock, Sauvignon Blanc 2008 (about $15) This kiwi Sauvignon Blanc has the customary refreshing acidity but adds an aromatic lift from a dash of riesling and viognier. Pair with lunch on

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Recipe: Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic

images1A true James Beard classic, this simple recipe may seem like it contains an overwhelming amount of garlic, but it actually highlights the allium’s softer side. The slow cooking time mellows the strong garlic taste and aroma and creates a buttery-mild garlic-perfumed paste that’s perfect spread on crusty bread. Get recipe >


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MemorEATS: José Andrés

“When I was just starting out I worked in a restaurant where I prepared canelones, Catalan stuffed pasta. The restaurant’s dining room had a huge fish tank. And we had a pan as long as me that we used for the canelones. One day I was showing off and brought the hot pan right out of the oven and into the dining room. I lost control and somehow managed to dump it into the fish tank!” –JBF Award Winner José Andrés

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Food Matters: Art Smith

Top Chef Masters makes its debut this week on Bravo and its roster of cheftestants is chock-full of JBF Award–winning and –nominated chefs like Rick Bayless, Roy Yamaguchi, and Cindy Pawlcyn. A player of particular note is our 2007 Humanitarian of the Year winner, Art Smith, whose work extends beyond the restaurant kitchen and into the community with his non-profit organization Common Threads. At its Chicago and Los Angeles locations, Common Threads participants learn about new cultures and our global community through food and cooking.

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On the Menu: June 8 to June 13

Here’s what happening at the Beard House next week: kitchen1aeileenmiller Monday, June 8, 7:00 p.m. Boutique Napa Wine Dinner Joel Harloff, Dali Wine Bar, Dallas / Proprietor Kathryn Walt Hall, Hall Wines Napa Valley, St. Helena, CA Wednesday, June 10, 12:00 p.m. Beard on Books Tyler Colman, A Year of Wine: Perfect Pairings, Great Buys, and What to Sip for Each Season Wednesday, June 10, 7:00 p.m. Summer Sail Ben Pollinger and Pastry Chef Jansen Chan, Oceana, NYC For details and reservations, visit www.jamesbeard.org or call 212.627.2308. (Photo by

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Eye Candy: Beard House

Bollito Misto

A bowl of bollito misto gets a spoonful of seasoning during a dinner in celebration of the 10th anniversary of Marc Vetri's eponymous restaurant.

May 28, 2009, The Beard House, NYC

(Photo by Geoff Mottram)

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Recipe: Strawberry Crêpes


The markets are just starting to brim with sweet, juicy strawberries. Alexandra Guarnaschelli of NYC's Butter gave us this recipe for delicious strawberry crêpes with chocolate sauce last summer when she was a featured JBF chef on ABC News Now's A Chefs Table series.

Get a taste of Alex's savory side later this month at our Cocktails and Canapés event at the Beard House, also featuring NYC chefs Akhtar Nawab, Jason Neroni, Doug Psaltis, and mixologist Junior Merino.

Watch a demo of... Read more >

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