Last night, the New York dining world glitterati and a mish mash of Top Chef alums gathered at the Four Seasons restaurant to fete this year's roster of Food & Wine's Best New Chef, hob nob with one another, listen to loud dance music, snack on food provided by the likes of Andrew Carmellini, Paul Liebrandt, and Daniel Humm, and try to catch a glimpse of the bonafide celeb guest of the night, Sarah Jessica Parker. Click here for a full list of the winners and read on for hangover observations, some restaurant world intel, and bits of gossip:
1) Yes, the venue was chosen back when star chef Fabio Trabocchi was in the kitchen. So, the F&W people were kinda bummed when he quit.
2) As usual at this event, Best New chef alums provided the food, with the exception of Top Chef brothers Michael and Brian Voltaggio, who are neither best new chef alums nor inductees. But as Dana Cowin said in her speech, they're "tip top chefs." Oh, and also they had the most popular table of the night, as one female literally pushed Team Eater out of the way to get to the front.
3) Sarah Jessica Parker was squired around by Bravo's Andy Cohen. She spent an inordinate amount of time at Paul Liebrandt's table—which served some unpleasant concoction of foie gras and celery—asking the chef what was in his dish. Then Kelly Choi showed up and the table became mobbed.
4) Top Chef alum Eli is looking for a new restaurant space on the Bowery with the owners of Solo, where he is doing a guest chef stint right now. He looked at Allen & Delancey on the LES but passed, figuring the grandness of the room would make his project seem too ambitious.
5) PR reps revealed that Annisa, Anita Lo's West Village restaurant that burned down last year is opening next week. It will have a lot of new menu additions inspired by Chef Lo's travels during the rebuilding period.
6) We tried, but Perilla's Harold Dieterle is not ready to dish on his new restaurant project, first mentioned here.
7) Josh Ozersky was roaming the room with a camera man to create content for his newly launched website. Word is he is also going to be a judge on a new CBS reality cooking show.
8) Something to look out for next week: The Huffington Post will launch a major food site on Monday complete with videos, interviews, and the like.
9) Andrew Carmellini, who wanted to serve fried chicken sandwiches but was asked instead to make his famous lamb meatball sliders, said he now has a full bar in the back room at Locanda Verde. So when the PDR is not in use, walkins can avoid the crush of the front bar and wait for their tables out back.
10) The afterparty was at Joey Campanaro's Kenmare, where a friend of Eater was charged $26 for a glass of bubbly (see here). The most amusing thing about the afterparty was seeing the dapper Four Seasons owner Julian Niccolini down in the Kenmare cave so far below 42nd St.
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