Chefs & Cooks
As luck would have it, Danny Meyer’s plane sailed into SF yesterday morning right like clockwork, giving him just enough time to grab an early lunch with me at Piccino before he was off to give a talk at the California Culinary Academy’s swanky new pad in Potrero Hill. (The lecture, Obama-esque in Meyer’s very earnest yes-we-can attitude, was all about giving the love back to your diners by way of excellent hospitality—not just sending them off with tomorrow-morning’s coffee cake.)
Happy Year of the Rat!
Check out these 7 things—all happening this week.
1. You calling me fat?: Fat Tuesday’s today, so join in the debauchery at Townhall and then plan your 40 days of meat-free living. For inspiration, check out Millennium’s Eric Tucker, who’s doing a cooking demo and signing his latest book The Artful Vegan on Saturday at 11:15 a .m. at the Ferry Building Marketplace.
Sean O'Brien joins the boys club.
I don’t want to say when Food & Wine magazine puts you on the cover for its "Best New Chefs" issue, you’re golden—but it sure seems like it. Past SF-based BNCs include Delfina’s Craig Stoll, Cyrus’s Douglas Keane, the Ritz-Carlton’s Ron Siegel, Jardinière’s Traci Des Jardins and Spruce’s Mark Sullivan (for his food at the Village Pub). Hardly a motley crew.
Visitors to my apartment will attest that I am completely obsessed with magazines. An impressive stack sits beside my bed and several more act as side tables in my living room. Despite what they say about how the “interweb” is going to gradually replace print media, there’s nothing quite as satisfying as actually holding a book or magazine in your hand—you can’t really take your laptop to the beach, or curl up with it in bed. (Well, maybe you can…but you really shouldn’t.)
I want to make this clear: Srijith, the executive sous chef of Campton Place Hotel restaurant, is not the kind of guy who's made his career cooking up a curry of the day. Before he arrived in SF, he was a chef at Deep End—an award-winning Conde Nast restaurant in the Maldives where the menu is Mediterranean.
Chef Laurent Manrique is getting back to his roots.
Chefs get excited about things: “The Bay Area is almost the same latitude and longitude!” Laurent Manrique, the chef of Aqua and now consultant to the Fifth Floor, was telling me the other day, referring to the likeness of our geography to his native homeland, the Gascony region of France. They have a wine country (OK, so theirs is Bordeaux, one of the most famous wine regions in the world), forest, mountains (OK, theirs is the Pyrenees), and an ocean in close proximity—and so do we!
Wood-oven roasted rib eye