Awards Watch: Readers' Choice, Best New Restaurant

James Beard Foundation Awards weekend is upon us! While we've been busy polishing the medallions and chilling the Champagne, you've been letting us know who you think deserves to win in the Food Blog and Website categories. Now that the polls have closed, we're excited to report that Hunter Angler Gardener Cook conquered the Food Blog vote, while Saveur.com was the victor in the Website contest. For our final readers' choice vote, we're picking a category that is sure t

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Eye Candy: Tony Mantuano and Friends

Tony Mantuano and his Spiaggia crew pose for a photo with student volunteers from the French Culinary Institute and the Institute of Culinary Education in the Beard House kitchen. The chef, who will compete in the champions round of Top Chef Masters next month, prepared a dinner to celebrate Spiaggia's 26th year in the business. To see more photos from Mantuano's event, click here. Want to rub elbows with the best and brightest of the culinary world? Click here to find our student volunteer application.

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Awards Watch: Reception Chefs Q & A

The 2010 JBF Awards are just days away, and we're so excited to see our reception chefs and taste what they have in store for us. In anticipation of the big shindig, we picked these cooks' brains about everything from where they first toiled in the restaurant industry to their lofty ambitions. Perhaps the most amusing discovery was that chefs—whom many of us expect to possess an indiscriminate love for all things food—can still be picky eaters. Look below to see some of their aversions: "Canned tuna.  No matter how “good” any brand is, it is always terrible." –Christopher DiMinno, Clyde Common, Portland, OR "Greasy food." –Noriyuki Sugie, IRONNORI, Venice, CA "Balut

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Recipe: Mélange of Spicy Big-Eye Tuna with Mango, Avocado, and Crispy Shallots

Colorful and full of luscious textures, this easy-to-whip-up tuna dish from JBF Award winner Patrick O'Connell makes for a great weeknight meal.

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On the Menu: Marcus Samuelsson

While it remains to be seen if Marcus Samuelsson will carry the day in the champions round of Top Chef Masters, one thing about the JBF Award winner is certain: he's sure to put out a fantastic meal at his 18th (!) Beard House appearance this Wednesday. In a departure from his signature Scandinavian fare, Samuelsson will showcase surf-and-turf dishes from his first foray into Chi-Town dining, C-House Fish and Chops. Check out the menu below: Hors d’Oeuvre Quail Eggs with Deviled Ham Fingerling Potatoes with Pleasant Ridge Reserve Cheese Oyster Shooters with Spring Peas Sweet-and-Sour Bacon Dinner Rushing Waters Smoked Rainbow Trout Rillettes with Radish Salad and Cornmeal Crackers Werp Farm Speckled Romaine Salad with Pickled Rhubarb, Sweet Onion

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Giveaway: illy Francis Francis X7 Espresso Machine

Getting caffeinated is a treasured part of our day here at the Beard Foundation. Whether it’s the routine morning espresso or a mid-afternoon pick-me-up, we’re lucky to have illy espresso grace our cups. We want to share the rich, smooth flavor and balanced taste of illy with our readers, so we’ve teamed up with our sponsor for a very special giveaway: a brand-spanking-new Francis Francis X7! This vibrant, stylish, and innovative machine (which retails for nearly $400) allows you to make a perfect espresso every time with illy’s iperEspresso capsules. So how are we going to pick one lucky winner? With a

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Kitchen Legacies: Exploring the Unique Chef/Mentor Relationship in Restaurant Kitchens

 

There is a saying in the food world: A chef is only as good as the cooks that come out of his or her kitchen.

 

The profession of cooking has always been based on an apprenticeship system. Even today, when a degree from a culinary program is often a prerequisite for kitchen work, new cooks still learn from more experienced cooks once they are on the job. Occasionally, in the heat of this environment, a relationship will form that goes beyond a simple transfer of skills. When an established chef takes a particular interest in another cook’s career—an interest based on mutual respect—both the chef and the cook grow. Once out in the world, whether in the kitchens of other chefs or in their own restaurants, these young cooks become a chef’s legacy.

 

This year, for the 20th anniversary of the James Beard Awards, we chose to celebrate these legacies by asking all of the previous Outstanding Chef Award winners to select a chef whom they mentored to cook at our gala reception. By shining... Read more >

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