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Posts Tagged ‘Gail Simmons’

Top Chefs and a Real Housewife at ‘Food and Wine’ Fete

Food and Wine magazine celebrated their 25th annual Best New Chefs in a lavish affair at Pranna last night. In addition to dishes served by past winners including Scott Conant, Michael Symon, Dan Kluger, and April Bloomfield, New York’s own Danny Bowien (Mission Chinese Food) and Alex Stupak (Empellon Cocina) were among this year’s recipients.

We caught up with Kristen Kish, winner of this season’s Top Chef, (above, with Top Chef Season 8 contestant Angelo Sosa) find out how the win has changed her and get the real scoop on nemesis Josie Smith-Malave.

“I get to go to a lot of cool parties,” Kish said of life post-win. “I’m just much busier.” So does she have any regrets about her famous fall on her sword? “No,” she said. “That’s just how I conduct myself. I was much happier leaving being who I was, even if there hadn’t been a Last Chance Kitchen.”

And if she could say one thing to Josie now? “No hard feelings,” said Kish. But her companion, who asked to remain anonymous, was not as PC. “I’d ask ‘Why were you even invited back?’”

Also on our minds: Does restauranteur Danny Meyer have as many lost weekends as we do from getting sucked into those addictive ‘Law and Order’ marathons, starring Stephanie March, wife of chef Bobby Flay? “Of course!” he said. “I can’t get enough of it! It’s always on somewhere.”

Before the night ended, we just had to ask Scott Conant, chef and judge on “Chopped,” who he would chop from the evening. “Myself!” he told us. “I’ve been too busy socializing to even be at my station!”

So at an event full of the best chefs, who caught the most attention? Surprise guests Kyle Richards and her husband Mauricio Umansky, (right) fresh off season 3 of “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.”

- JESSICA EULE

Red Rooster owner/chef Marcus Samuelson, Food & Wine’s Gail Simmons, and Top Chef Masters judge (and former Mediabistro food writing instructor) Francis Lam

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LA Weekly Writer Contemplates Her TV Celebrity Cousin

You may know Gail Simmons from the Bravo show Top Chef and same-network spinoff Just Desserts. Perhaps you have purchased her brand new book Talking With My Mouth Full.

But what you surely don’t know about Simmons, unless you have already read this LA Weekly item, is that she is also the cousin of article author Tibby Rothman. The reporter takes about seven paragraphs to get to that fact, and moves on hilariously from there:

Then, in 2008, the ultimate blow. There she was, younger, getting married. Me, the don’t-have-an-agenda girl, still bereft of a ring. Family intervention got me on a plane to New York. The in-flight entertainment featured Top Chef. I watched CNN.

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Food & Wine Steps Into The Digital Kitchen

Although they have covered man’s primal needs of eating and drinking for over 30 years, Food & Wine has come a long way in making their content easier to access for readers.  After introducing an iPad app in October, Food & Wine is advancing their social media presence by hosting monthly Facebook live chats with well-known chefs.  This new campaign will begin tomorrow and allow users to ask New York chef and restaurant owner Scott Conant questions about his cooking style and recipes.

Conant, who owns Scarpetta and Faustina, will discuss recipes from his recently opened Las Vegas restaurant D.O.C.G. and share some holiday cooking advice.  The Facebook chat is a complement to Food & Wine’s feature on Conant in this month’s print issue.

F&W’s Facebook fan page currently exceeds 120,000 followers and interactive events like these live chats have helped broaden the magazine’s appeal.  In November, Food & Wine hosted an online discussion with their own senior recipe developer Grace Parisi and their Facebook Mix & Share page provides party tips from Bacardi and F&W special projects manager Gail Simmons.

Tomorrow’s hour-long chat with Scott Conant will begin at 2:30 p.m.

Stars Flock to Huffington Post Game Changers Party

Image via HuffPo

“Innovators, mavericks, visionaries, and leaders” convened in downtown New York Thursday night as The Huffington Post celebrated its 100 Game Changers of 2010. Neon centerpieces including a flaming orange shopping cart and lime green globe adorned the darkly lit Skylight Studios space, and we thought for a minute we mistakenly showed up for Arianna Huffington‘s big, fat Greek Bat Mitzvah. Not to worry: A bacon cheeseburger passed hors d’oeuvre cleared up the confusion. Giant screens projected winners in each “Game Changer” category, from food to activism to education — though we didn’t spot a Divorce vertical (maybe next year!).

Amid the swarm of celebs, we spotted Sean Penn, Anderson Cooper, Gayle King, Paulina Porizkova, Tom Colicchio (adorably holding hands with his wife), Marcus Samuelsson, Gail Simmons, and Fern Mallis, but we just had to stop and talk to former governor Eliot Spitzer. Even though we were tempted to ask to see his socks, we took the high road and asked him about his new show on CNN, Parker Spitzer. We asked Spitzer what the hardest part has been so far, and he responded, “Only having eight to 12 minute segments to work with” for each guest. What has he learned since the first taping? “Talk quickly because you only have eight minutes.” He told us he wishes he had an hour instead (we have a feeling that’s never gonna happen), and when we asked who he’d most like to have on the show, Spitzer named Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, remarking that the latter ex-prez “always has a lot to say” and adding, “The fun part is interviewing people I don’t necessarily agree with.” We couldn’t agree more, Mr. Spitzer.

Follow the jump for HuffPo’s red carpet video coverage.
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Are Magazines Like Top Chef The Future Of Journalism?

mbcircus3.jpgFishbowlNY managing editor Rebecca Fox moderated a panel this afternoon about integrated partnerships and multiplatform marketing and publicity deals in the media world. If you’re uncertain what kind of deals would fall under this umbrella, a good example is the partnership between Bravo‘s “Top Chef” reality cooking competition and food magazine Food & Wine.

Ellen Stone, Bravo’s SVP of marketing, told the Mediabistro Circus audience that the cable channel works closely with Food & Wine to promote both brands: Gail Simmons, who works for the magazine, appears on “Top Chef” as a judge, and the magazine, which is published by American Express Publishing, covers the show on its edit pages. The two are even working together to create a “Top Chef” magazine, Stone said.

Other panelists, Chuck Cordray and Tom Smith of Hearst Digital, Steve Rosenbaum, the CEO of Magnify.net, and NYMag.com GM Michael Silberman also discussed deals they have worked on recently and things they seek out in partners.

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