Q & A with JBF Award Nominee Dominique Ansel

Anna Mowry interviews JBF Award–nominated pastry chef Dominique Ansel

 

Hopes were high when Daniel alum Dominique Ansel launched his eponymous bakery in New York’s Soho neighborhood in November of 2011. On its opening day, the store sold out by 3:00 P.M., and the enthusiasm has only barely waned ever since. Now a nominee for our 2013 Outstanding Pastry Chef award, Ansel chatted with us about the unexpected success of his most popular item, the other pastry chefs he admires, and a perfect glass of milk.

 

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JBF: What is your favorite item from the current menu at Dominique Ansel? Which creation are you most proud of?

 

DA: Well, the DKA, a.k.a. Dominique’s Kouign Amann, changed my life. The kouign amann is a pastry from Brittany that’s been described as a “caramelized croissant”.  I remember first making it back at Fauchon, and later I baked some for the manager’s meetings at Daniel. Never once did I think that... Read more >

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Q & A with Stuart Brioza and Nicole Krasinski of the JBF Award–Nominated State Bird Provisions

Anna Mowry interviews the chefs behind the 2013 James Beard Award nominee State Bird Provisions

 

When State Bird Provisions opened last New Year’s Day, it offered a novel vision of dining from husband-and-wife team Stuart Brioza and Nicole Krasinski. Instead of taking orders tableside, their staff wheeled around a cart, dim sum–style, piled with the couple’s intricate, globally inspired small plates. The format—and the Rubicon graduates’ exciting food—seemed to win over just about everyone in San Francisco and beyond. We spoke with Stuart and Nicole about their follow-up project, the versatility of pancakes, and where they eat on their days off.

 

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JBF: There's a section on your menu that's just pancakes, so we have to ask: why pancakes?

 ... Read more >

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Q & A with JBF Award Nominee David Posey

Anna Mowry interviews 2013 James Beard Award nominee David Posey of Chicago's Blackbird

 

Last winter, a four-star review from the Chicago Tribune gave Blackbird a ticket to join the city’s crème de la crème. The clincher? Chef de cuisine David Posey’s daring bill of fare, praised by critic Phil Vettel for its unusual ingredient combinations. Here, the first-time Rising Star Chef of Year nominee tells us about his formative work experiences, cooking philosophy, and memorable meals.

 

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JBF: You worked at Alinea before Blackbird, and you cite Grant Achatz as an important  mentor. What were your biggest takeaways from that experience?

 

DP: I had the pleasure of working with chef Achatz at both Trio and Alinea. My externship was at Trio. I was a much younger and less experienced cook, which meant it took far more effort for me to focus on discipline and attention to detail. Whether it was folding towels... Read more >

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Q & A with JBF Award Nominee Garrett Oliver

Elena North-Kelly interviews Garrett Oliver (photo by Michael Harlan Turkell)

 

As brewmaster of the Brooklyn Brewery, author of The Brewmaster’s Table, and editor-in-chief of The Oxford Companion to Beer, Garrett Oliver is an undisputed authority on America’s favorite alcoholic beverage. We got in touch with the 2013 Outstanding Wine, Beer, or Spirits Professional award nominee to find out about what chefs and brewers have in common, the restaurant with the best beer selection in New York City, and the wildest brew he’s ever concocted.

 

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JBF: What is your favorite beer from Brooklyn Brewery’s current collection?... Read more >

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Q & A with JBF Award Nominee Brooks Headley

Brooks Headley (photo by Glen E. Friedman)

 

When former punk rocker Brooks Headley took over the pastry department at New York City’s four-star Del Posto, it didn’t take long for his playful spirit to seep through the menu. We caught up with the Outstanding Pastry Chef award nominee to learn about his “buzzed Italian grandma” cookbook, the Del Posto dessert that was inspired by a Looney Tunes episode, and the childhood food memory that still haunts him.

 

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JBF: You were a drummer for many years before you were a chef. Do you like to listen to music while you’re in the kitchen?

 

BH: I still occasionally play drums in a crummy... Read more >

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Q & A with JBF Award Nominee Hedy Goldsmith

 

Pastry chef and author Hedy Goldsmith has garnered widespread acclaim for her innovative desserts at Miami’s chic Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink (and, more recently, the Cypress Room). We got in touch with the repeat Outstanding Pastry Chef award nominee to learn about her go-to cookbooks, her favorite places to eat in Miami and beyond, and her ultimate comfort food.

 

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JBF: We’ve read that you went to art school—what brought you from the world of fine arts into the culinary arts?

 

HG: Art school prepared me to become a more creative pastry chef. A blank canvas or blank dessert plate calls for the same creativity.

 

JBF: What is your current favorite item on the menu at Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink?

 

HG: It’s hard to single out a favorite because the menu often changes from week... Read more >

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Q & A with JBF Award Nominee Thomas McNaughton

JBF senior editor Anna Mowry interviews JBF Award nominee Thomas McNaughton

 

Thomas McNaughton’s universe has expanded considerably since we last spoke with him: he and his team have added Central Kitchen and Salumeria to their San Francisco restaurant family, and he’s also started working on a cookbook that’s based on his first venture, flour + water. Below, the three-time finalist for our Rising Star Chef of the Year award brings us up to speed on the state of Central Kitchen, tells us what we can expect to see in his book, and shares his expert advice on making pasta at home. 

 

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JBF: When we interviewed you last year,... Read more >

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The Complete JBF Award Nominees

The 2013 James Beard Award nominations

 

Late to this morning's announcement of the Beard Award nominations? No problem: we've got the full list right here.

 

Don't forget: the Book, Broadcast, and Journalism Awards dinner will be on Friday, May 3, while the Design and the Restaurant and Chef Awards will be revealed on Monday, May 6. Details about those events are here. Hope to see you there!

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Awards Watch: Next Week's Nominee Announcement

 

Let’s see: we’ve revealed the 2013 semifinalists, shared our latest batch of America’s Classics, and announced who’s hosting the ceremonies at Lincoln Center and Gotham Hall. What could be left to tell about this year’s James Beard Awards? Ah, yes: the final nominees!

 

To continue our annual tradition of unveiling the nominees in a vibrant food city, we’re bringing the Beard Awards show to Charleston on Monday, March 18. The announcement will take place at Lowndes Grove Plantation, and will begin at 11:30 AM... Read more >

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Awards Watch: Theme and Hosts Announced

The 2013 James Beard Awards

 

The Awards news just keeps on coming. Today we're excited to announce the theme of the 2013 Beard Awards: Lights! Camera! Taste! Spotlight on Food & Film. In homage to the role that food has played on the silver screen, we'll be highlighting iconic culinary scenes in cinema throughout our Awards festivities. We've also asked the chefs who are cooking at this year's reception to create dishes inspired by a favorite food moment in a movie.  

 

In hosting news, we've tapped Ted Allen to emcee the Book, Broadcast & Journalism Awards Dinner on Friday, May 3; award–winning actor Stanley Tucci will assume hosting duties at our Lincoln Center gala on Monday, May 6.

 

Read the full press release.

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