Along the Coast: Rising Stars Gala in New England
Brian Kingsford Knows Performance
In early April, Providence veteran Brian Kingsford opened the doors of Bacaro to host the 2014 StarChefs.com Coastal New England Rising Stars, along with the region's mentor chefs, for an unforgettable Honorees Dinner. Along with passed caviar and bubbles, Kingsford and his staff prepared a showstopping lamb chop with saffron honey, and he chose the bold yet clean lines of Steelite's FreeStyle Performance collection to plate the dish. With Performance, Kingsford's center-of-the-plate protein was the star of the show, and the line's practical durability will serve Bacaro and its Italian tapas—or "cicchetteria"—format for years to come.
Mentor Chefs Showcase Their Craft
The mentor chefs cooking at the Coastal New England Rising Stars Honorees dinner have spent decades devoted to the craft of cooking. And even though they all hail from Coastal New England, their styles couldn't be more distinct. Neil Ferguson prepared a sweet-sour vegetarian cauliflower dish highlighted by ras al hanout. Gabriel Frasca mixed high- and low-brow with a wagyu cheese steak slider. Matt Gennuso got down to business with a chili-topped house frankfurter, and Beau Vestal leaned Moroccan with merguez and chickpea tagine. But when it came to plating, they all embraced the elegant, rustic versatility of Craft, whose hand-made feel and range of shapes complemented each of their dishes.
And the Award Goes to ...
There's something so pure, so clean, so simple about Rising Star Chef Mayumi Hattori's cuisine and plating style that it brings to mind Japanese watercolors: vibrant and prosaic. She has an ease of presentation and thoughtfulness learned by cooking with leading chefs like Suzanne Goin, Amanda Lydon, Gabriel Frasca, and Ken Oringer. Now at Straight Wharf on Nantucket, Hattori's level of refinement is indeed artful—and for her work she took home Steelite's Art of Presentation award, along with $5,000 in plateware. At the Rising Stars Gala, Hattori plated her Ricotta Casoncelli, Spring Greens, Snap Peas, and Prosciutto on a toffee-hued Anfora plate, showcasing her harmonious, sensuous dish atop the earthy Sedona Color Palette.
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