2011 New York Rising Stars Award Winners and Why They Shine
Never has a town been as analyzed, celebrated, and mythologized as New York City—and never has a town been so thoroughly tasted. As anyone who lives, eats, or cooks here knows, this city is a breeding ground of talent, and a crash test site for dreams and investments. Even as standard-bearer restaurants endure, churning out ranks of talented professionals each year, new voices emerge to test themselves against the city’s opinions and appetites. And we, the humble audience, sit back, marvel, and tuck in to the feast from year to year, enjoying every bite and sip, but we’re always in search of those sparkling talents, those Rising Stars of New York food culture.
This year we tasted savory dishes, desserts, cocktails, and wine pairings from more than 80 of New York’s talented chefs, pastry chefs, mixologists, and sommeliers. Only 15 earned the title of Rising Star. So what makes them shine?
Every Rising Star has a quality that makes it clear to us that he or she is going to shape the future of the culinary industry. They are leaders in creativity, ambition, discipline, and, of course, cuisine. They don’t simply survive the rough and tumble New York restaurant scene—they thrive on it. So without further ado, here's an introduction to the 2011 New York Rising Stars: who they are, why they shine, and how they're shaping the future of American cuisine.
Dell’Anima and L’Artusi
Joe Campanale had a wine rack in his dorm room, wrote a conspicuous number of his European Studies papers on the subject of food, and somehow construed a way to turn a reporting class into a three-week stage at Union Square Café. The guy obviously wasn’t meant for a desk job. Campanale didn’t fall in love with the kitchen so much as the culture of wine and food, and it’s a love he’s transformed into a kind of casual, super approachable expertise over the years. L’Artusi, Dell’Anima, and the recently opened Anfora—that Campanale runs with Partner August Cardona and Chef-partner Gabe Thompson—operate with the same kind of affable perfection. There’s love behind each of Thompson’s dishes, just as there’s community investment and a genuine sense of the personal touch in Campanale’s kind of ownership. He’s enriching the West Village, one smile, one restaurant, and one carefully chosen bottle of small production wine at a time.