Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Gabrielle Hamilton, the best chef ever

We just learned that Gabrielle Hamilton has been nominated for Best Chef in New York City for the James Beard Awards. And we knew her when! Her restaurant, Prune, has been our favorite place to go for all time in the City. And now we are never EVER going to get a table, right Ms. G?

Gabrielle actually catered Sharon and my wedding way back in 1992. She dug a hole with her own hands and grilled a whole lamb in the ground after filling the hole with charcoal! We knew back then she would go big time.

You have to love some of the comments she made about the nomination to Time Out New York. Here's just a few:

What does your nomination as the only woman in the Best Chef NYC category mean for you, personally and professionally?

It means it fucks things up, and undermines all the potential joy of the nomination. In a way, I tend not to spin out on that stuff. I can’t help but think they needed to pick a girl, and of the girls, I’m pretty good. I could go down that path for hours, but I’m not going to. I’ll just say that I’m honored.

What will you be wearing to the awards? The ceremony is, after all, the Oscars of the food world.

You’re just like my female staff at Prune! The minute they found out, they were like, “What will you wear?” I don’t know—it’s supposed to be long, right? It says evening attire. I know how to clean up, so I’ll clean up just fine. We’re decidedly not Hollywood types, we’re not trained for this sort of thing. We spend a lot of time eating pork. To see us with burn marks on our arms in these fancy clothes… We’ll figure it out.

If you win Best Chef NYC, what will you do to celebrate?

The same thing we’re already doing—just going to the party for the fun of it. We might come back to Prune with a couple of very close friends and eat burgers.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Friday, April 17, 2009

College tour

The college tour is a very interesting phenomenon. You would think that after all these years, most of them would be about the same. But they aren't. I am early to the game, travelling this spring break with my sophomore son who wants to get a jump on the whole process. This trip was the mid-Atlantic tour. We visited George Washington University, Georgetown, Johns Hopkins, and today we go to William & Mary. Granted there are many similarities. All schools have students lead the tours. They point out the general history of the school, the size of the student body, the security procedures on campus, and the all-important mess halls. But what is very different is the intro talk. At Georgetown, it was lead by the Dean of Admissions, a pretty dry affair, Powerpoint-heavy. Johns Hopkins, meanwhile, was given by this incredibly impressive senior co-ed who gave a commanding 45 minute talk in front of 200 people WITHOUT notes. She is an international studies student going on to the London School of Economics. Perhaps the favorite was a combo talk, admissions person and student, at GW. Today, it's on to William & Mary after a much needed break yesterday - my son off to Busch Gardens, and me and Mom off to the outlet stores. --John Anderson

Thursday, April 2, 2009