Tonight the 'Oscars of Food', the James Beard Awards are taking place at Lincoln Center and Eater is there to grab photos of all the celeb chefs, schmooze it up in the press room, and document the glory and the tedium for you folks at home. Until the party in the press room really gets going. Then you're on your own.
6:30:The press room is incredibly tame. Soon enough they'll start hitting the champagne table and loosen up.
6:35: Kim Cattrall and Bobby Flay kick things off, and of course she plays off the SATC thing: "Is there anything sexier than food?...Maybe what's sexier are the chefs." And then she and the Flay engage in some awkward and forced flirting.
6:38: Gavin Kaysen wins the Rising Star Chef Award for his work at Cafe Boulud.
6:42: Kim Cattral: "Passion...now that's something I can relate to."
6:45: Another one for the Meyer mantle. Eleven Madison Park wins for Best Wine Service
6:46: Could this music be any worse?
6:48: There was a whole two minute delay while they waited for the presenter of the Best Chef Pacific Award.
7:12: The live video feed in the press room is on the fritz. Luckily, the audio is fine and we can hear every second of the tortuous lags between awards being announced and the winner actually making it to the stage.
7:15: Next up, one of the ones we've all been waiting for...best chef in NYC...Oh j/k. they're still on the Mid-Atlantic...and we just fell asleep.
7:23: David Chang beat out Wylie Dufresne, Michael Anthony, Terrance Brennan, and Gabriel Kruether for Best Chef NYC. The man can do no wrong. NB: we're pretty sure this is T. Brennan's
third fifth nomination/ third fifth loss.
7:27 Press room gossip: We hear Jody Williams may be the next new chef at A Voce.
7:28 Chang Gossip: We hear Chang has not one by two party buses for after the show.
7:30: The next ten or so awards and presentations (Cookbook Hall of Fame, 'Heathy Focus Americana') sound like the opposite of interesting. So we're taking a break until we get to the meaty awards (New Restaurant, Outstanding Restaurant, etc.) around 8, 8:30.
All the fun continues here.