StarChefs in the News
Star Chefs: Report from
the International Chefs Congress - Day 2
On day two of the International Chefs Congress, Pierre Hermé was announced as “The God of Pastry.” With many foreign chefs requiring English assistance, only Hermé had award-winning cookbook author Dori Greenspan as his translator, pictured below. With Hermé on stage at Covenant House, the spectators became devout worshippers. And when the dessert Hermé made was passed to the audience directly from the stage, you’d think they were giving away winning lottery tickets by the reaction of hopeful would-be tasters.
Masaharu Morimoto, did he ever lose an Iron Chef battle? In full Japanese attire, Morimoto showed off his sword-sharp skills, his sense of humor, and several large pieces of fish. He presented a 4-foot long octopus tentacle, a foot-long strand of salmon roe, and a piece of Toro so marbled it made him think of Prosciutto, “Toro-sciutto” he said giggling. Aided by three assistants, the bouncy yet disciplined Morimoto prepared Irisake (plum vinegar and sake reduction), abalone, and authentic Dashi. The only disappointing thing about this demonstration was that the audience could smell these delicious dishes, they just couldn’t taste them.
The only acceptable conclusion this event had to involve food we could eat, and lots of it. StarChefs.com must have known that, because on Wednesday evening we were treated to “The New York Rising Stars Push-Cart Gala.” For the event, Crobar was turned into a giant street-food style festival, where each Rising Star had a push-cart of offerings from their restaurant. Of note was Chef-owner Iacopo Falai of Falai in Lower East Side, who handed out fois-gras-stuffed phyllo dipped in savory chocolate and surprised everyone by handing out clever, logo-baring to-go samples of his creation.
Like the rest of the event, the Push-Cart Gala provided ample liquid refreshment. With an open bar, wine and sake tastings, by the time everyone came to Bed at 11:30pm, they were ready to lay down. But good chefs have stamina, and a pretty high tolerance for alcohol, so they stood until closing without collapsing.
It’s this writer’s wish that the success of the International Chefs Congress will guarantee more of its kind. It was educational, inspiring, and wicked fun, with first-class talent not normally seen in the same place at the same time. The culinary industry has come a long way in the States, it’s about time someone put on a show worthy of that fact. StarChefs.com, I raise my glass to you for being the first.