I am not going to hold back or pretend or be blase about it all, I LOVED being on the pink carpet at the James Beard Awards-I loved being in the press room with all the other media/press characters. I loved eating artisinal cheese and drinking pommeray champagne while staring at the big screens and tweeting up the results to the 220 fans on twitter that I now have. I used to only have 180 fans, but post Beard coverage I picked up an additional 40! And I was not the only one tweeting, out in the pressroom everyone was tweeting away -according to the NY mag. I was thrilled to be there because… seriously…. I am just a regular food scientist who has spent the last 14 years working in kitchens and labs and who spends her nights and weekends writing articles for Culinology and for this blog-all so I could prove to the Beard Foundation that I would write stuff before, during and after the grand event! I had to do my time in the writing trenches to get into this gig!
My highlights include doing live interviews with Tom Douglas who told me he would love to become an RCA member and would someone please send him the application! Jose Andreas has never heard of the RCA, Robert Danhi, of course HAS heard of it-he is on the board after all… Dan Barber said that perhaps we (as in his farm to table world and my food science world) could meet “halfway” and Tom AKA TOP CHEF Coliccio asked me “What are you researching” . Movies of these interviews to be posted shortly-as soon as I edit out the parts where I dropped the camera in my pocket and forgot to turn it off. Other great moments included my accidently on purpose bumping into Mario and almost tripping over his huge orange shoes and drinking Sherry Cocktails (more on Sherry and cocktails in the next few weeks) at the post party Gala.
Lots of winners including Drew Nieporent for Outstanding Restaurantaur, Jean Georges for Outstanding Restaurant, Dan Barber for Outstanding Chef, Nate Appleman for Rising Star chef, Momofuku for Best New Restaurant (and I still can’t get a reservation there!) The book “Fat” by Jennifer McLagan won Cookbook of the Year and Single Subject book award, (which I was hoping would go to Joyce Goldstein, for her book on Mediterranean cuisine.
The Best Chef Regional Awards went to Michael Symon, Lola (Great Lakes), Jose Garces, Amada (Mid-Atlantic), Tim McKee, La Belle Vie (Midwest), Gabriel Kreuther, The Modern (NYC), Rob Evans, Hugo’s (Northeast), Maria Hines, Tilth (Northwest), Paul Bartlotta, Barlotta Ristorante at the Wynn (Southwest), John Currance, City Grocery (South), Mike Lata, Fig (Southeast) and Douglas Keane, Cyrus (Pacific).
The complete list of winners can be found here No journalist is complete without a photographer, which is why I brought my favorite photographer Robert David Zemser. For a more seasoned and cynical view on the awards, check out Bret’s summary here!