Had to take a quick break from the Awards and try a fantastic beet brownie from Monica Pope at T'afia. It was so inventive and set apart from the many beef carpaccios. Now back in time for the final biggies: Drew Nieporent, David Chang, and da da dum...
"This is the coolest thing!" says Ed Levine, journalist and proprietor of Serious Eats, is watching Gina DePalma win for Outstanding Pastry Chef. "Gina is amazing. She is just a great writer and she's been through a lot lately. This is the best thing ever."
Chanterelle's self-taught Kate Zuckerman is pleased with her fig-walnut bread, saying, "The starter today was right on."
Jennifer Petrusky's fava bean and onion surprise is a great start to the tastes being served by women chefs. Anita Lo's steak tartar has added surprise---she personally spoons a granita of asian pear juice into each dish.
It's 9pm. The awards aren't done, but presenters, recipients, and guests alike are storming the stands. I feel sorry for the chefs attempting to put finishing garnishes on the food before it's whisked off their table.
Frequent JBF Journalism Award winner, New Orleans writer Brett Anderson on what makes dining in NYC special: "I got to town and went to dinner at Graydon Carter's place, the Waverly Inn. I sat next to the rapper Nas. He was with some beautiful women and I thought he was married. Then I get in a taxi and you know they have these TVs? Well theres a news thing about Nas and how he and his wife have split."
Award winner John T Edge, Donut Expert and the Nicest Southern Man in the World, talks about Jack "I've Got Nine Children, Four on the Side" Arnold (the World's Best Food Award Speech Giver). "Jack and his beautiful wife run the best meat-and-three in Nashville, which is by definition the best meat-and-three in America," says Edge. "He makes amazing fried green tomatoes, beautiful green---he's not buying canned shit. He's locally focused, seasonally focused but he is not a precious son of a bitch."
"I couldn't bet on it. Actually, last week, I was at the Kentucky Derby, and you know how I won my money? I put $2 on every horse in the 11th race, and I won $140."
Student volunteer Matt decided to get in the game. He came on duty at 8:30 tonight. He knows the awards are prestigious and is looking forward to working with chef Zuckerman of Chanterelle. The hardest part of the night was finding the coat room to drop off his stuff.