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Posts Tagged ‘Scott Conant’

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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Thanks to Homeless Man, OWN Finally Gets Some Good PR

Just when Oprah Winfrey perhaps needed him most, homeless LA resident “Eddie” has come to the public relations rescue of the embattled media mogul and her fellow OWN executives.

This recent encounter at Beverly Hills’ Montage Hotel could have so easily gone the other way. But instead, as reported by the New York Post’s Page Six, it has led to the best bit of feel-good OWN branding since the network’s lofty launch:

Oprah joined four OWN executives on the patio at chef Scott Conant’s Beverly Hills hot spot Scarpetta… Spies say a passerby then approached, pleading, “Oprah can you help a homeless guy get a bowl of soup, please?”

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Who Would Star Chef Dan Kluger Rather Cook For, Obama or Adele?

mediabistro.com’s Jessica Eule attended last night’s Food & Wine 2012 Best New Chefs in America event

The lights and tourists of Times Square seemed a little more four-star last night, as Food & Wine magazine held its 24th annual Best New Chefs celebration. Master chefs including Daniel Boulud (a Best New Chef in 1988), Gavin Kaysen (2007), and Michael Anthony (2002), had to make their way past a Ripley’s sword swallowing demonstration and a waxed Morgan Freeman welcoming visitors to Madam Tussauds to get to the red carpet event at The Liberty Theatre, which is oddly nestled under an Applebee’s.

The location didn’t dampen the mood, where drinks flowed freely and accompanied dishes including bone marrow with braised ox cheek, courtesy of Top Chef all-star Richard Blais and enjoyed by guests including Geoffrey Zakarian, Scott Conant, Curtis Stone, Marcus Samuelsson, and recent Top Chef winner Paul Qui, who could not speak with us “without clearance from Bravo”.

ABC Kitchen chef Dan Kluger and his wife, Hannah

We did get a chance to talk with Dan Kluger, chef of ABC Kitchen and one of this year’s award winners. It’s been a banner year for Kluger, who in addition to winning Best New Chef also had the chance to serve President Obama during a recent fundraiser at ABC Kitchen.

“It’s apples to oranges,” Kluger said when asked which experience was more intimidating. “Obama’s dinner was nerve-wracking and tiring. This was humbling and inspiring,” he said of his win. “Serving the President was an honor. Tonight was honorable.” So did the Commander-in-chief have any odd menu requests? “That I can’t reveal,” Kluger said, “but I can say we stayed true to the food of ABC Kitchen.”

So who could possibly top the President of the United States as a dinner guest? “(Singer) Adele,” said Kluger, without hesitation.

The rest of the Best New Chefs, and more pictures, after the jump…

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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.

Food & Wine Hosts Top Chef Finale Viewing Party

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Ed Cotton, Top Cheftestant; Gail Simmons, Food & Wine special projects director and Top Chef: Just Desserts Judge
(Credit: Sylvain Gaboury for Food & Wine)

— JESSICA EULE

It was a foodie paradise Wednesday as New York’s great chefs gathered at Tom Colicchio’s Craft restaurant for Food & Wine‘s Top Chef D.C. finale party. Noted toques like Eric Ripert, Jonathan Waxman, Scott Conant, Marcus Samuelsson, Masaharu Morimoto all came to see who would be crowned this season’s winner. And, since the finale took the contestants to Singapore, the city’s tourism board was also on hand to dish about the Asian culinary scene.

With only Ed Cotton in attendance from this season’s cast, we had a chance to ask him about his so-called rivalry with fellow New York contestant Angelo Sosa. “It was a lot of editing,” Cotton said of the drama this season. “Of course I wanted to succeed in kicking Angelo’s ass, but there was no rivalry.”

And what did Cotton think about Sosa’s illness leading up to the final challenge? “The cast and crew all got sick at some point. Maybe it was a 24 hour bug. Or maybe it was just his nerves. He was supposed to be Mr. Asian.”

As for the rumored upcoming Top Chef All-Stars, Food & Wine editor-in-chief Dana Cowin was mum. However, if speculation is correct, it sounds like Sosa may have a chance to redeem himself, as Cotton confirmed he will not be partaking in any upcoming seasons.

See more pics from the event after the jump.

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Saveur Celebrates Successful Year With Gourmet Potluck Feast

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Saveur Publisher Merri Lee Kingsly and Editor-in-Chief James Oseland have a great time at their holiday party Tuesday night

We’ve been to enough media parties to become very well-versed in how to delicately eat hors d’oeuvres while chatting with someone and balancing a glass of wine. We know to steer clear of the mini sliders and stick to anything that can be consumed in one bite.

But when we arrived at Saveur‘s jam-packed test kitchen-cum-party space on Tuesday night, we knew we would have to throw all our party rules out. The theme of the potluck party was simplicity and celebration, and it was catered by some of the best chefs in the biz, who mingled among the crowd or served their food from steaming chafing dishes themselves. And never mind that one-bite rule; we dug into Scott Conant‘s balsamic glazed ribs, Christopher Lee‘s black truffle and bucheron cheese potato gratin and chocolate cupcakes topped with caramel buttercream and crumbled bacon, which sounds weird but was delicious.

After a successful year that saw Saveur leading its category in ad sales, publisher Merri Lee Kingsly was absolutely beaming as she and editor-in-chief James Oseland welcomed all the participating chefs, including Marco Canora, John DeLucie, Alex Guarnaschelli, Gavin Kaysen, Michael Laiskonis, George Mendes, Seamus Mullen, Pichet Ong, Zak Pelaccio, Michael Psilakis and Bill Telepan.

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The chefs, with Kingsly and Oseland

More photos after the jump

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