Thursday, December 31, 2009

Oliver Awarded Top US Ideas Prize

British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver will win the 2010 TED Prize next month for his work on a UK school dinners campaign, the Fifteen Foundation, as well as the television series "Food Revolution USA." The award, which lists President Bill Clinton, Bono and Dave Eggers among its previous winners, will see the chef receive $100,000 and be granted "one wish to change the world.”

Monday, December 28, 2009

Restaurants Turning Deep Fryer Oil into Energy Savings

Listen to James Peret, the inventor of the Vegawatt, on NPR's All Things Considered. The Vegawatt is a generator that turns the used oil from a restaurant's deep fryer and sends it right back into the restaurant as electricity.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Chestnuts at the Winter Table

Laura McCandlish from NPR reports that Thanksgiving is about the only time Americans cook with chestnuts, in stuffing for the turkey or with Brussels sprouts. There are, she says, more unusual preparations that could be part of any winter holiday feast or weeknight meal. Chestnut soup, chestnut flour latkes, maple-chestnut ice cream...

Friday, December 11, 2009

Back-To-Basics Leads 2010 Food Trends

A focus on building a menu from quality, basic ingredients leads the Food Channel's list of top food trends for 2010. This version of back-to-basics suggests a growing trend toward real, from-scratch cooking.

Friday, December 04, 2009

How to Uncook an Egg

Dr Hervé This has a novel suggestion for how to cook the turkey this Christmas: in the dishwasher. Presumably the founder of molecular gastronomy and the author of a new book entitled "The Science of the Oven" has thought through this efficient way of doing Christmas Eve’s dishes at the same time as tenderising the bird for the big day. But is it definitely going to be edible?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Are Wine Ratings Flawed?

Two recent papers in the Journal of Wine Economics say that wine ratings vary too widely to be meaningful, as reported by the Wall Street Journal.

Friday, November 20, 2009

A Smart Approach to Stockmaking

Andreas Viestad from the Washington Post offers a smarter approach to stockmaking. He says browning, baking, and straining is all there is to it.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Tokyo is City with Most Three-Star Michelin Eateries

The Michelin Guide gave top billing to 11 restaurants in Tokyo, making it the city with the most three-star eateries. French restaurants took three of the 11 three-star slots.

Tokyo has a total of 261 stars, more than any of the cities Michelin covers in 23 nations. New York has four three-star restaurants.

Michelin & Cie., the world’s largest tiremaker, has been publishing its restaurant and hotel guides since 1900, at the start of the automotive era. Distributed for free until 1920, the guide was originally meant for chauffeurs and included tips on using and repairing tires.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The LA Times on Life After Gourmet

Russ Parsons at the LA Times tells us why the fall of Gourmet magazine is indicative of a larger trend toward narrowcasting - focusing in on a small but enthusiastic audience.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Some Favorites from Down Under

Australia's food culture is influenced by German, Italian, Greek, Asian and South African immigrant communities. Ari Weinzweig at Atlantic Monthly tells us about six Australian foods to try, including Anzac biscuits, Joseph La Casetta Aged Vinegar, and curries made by Charmaine Solomon.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

A Closer Look at Agave Syrup

The sap from the Mexican plant agave is now increasingly being sold beside honey on supermarket shelves as a natural sweetener called agave nectar. Companies that sell it say it saves calories and raises blood sugar less than conventional sugar. Doctors are skeptical that it is healthier, and the Glycemic Research Institute has issued a warning that it may not be safe for diabetics.

Monday, October 26, 2009

IACP Awards in Progress

The 2010 IACP Bert Greene Awards for Food Journalism and the Awards of Excellence are now in progress. Entries are due at Headquarters by December 7, 2009.

Read more about these exciting awards programs and enter or nominate someone today!

Bert Greene Awards

Awards of Excellence

Friday, October 23, 2009

Vongerichten Returns to Boston

Nation's Restaurant News reports that renowned chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten is opening a restaurant called Market in the W Hotel in Boston. The menu will feature French, Asian and Italian dishes made from locally sourced food items.

The restaurant’s debut will mark Vongerichten’s return to Boston after two decades. He began his career in the United States as executive chef at the Lafayette restaurant there.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Food is Active Category for New Magazine Launches

In the first nine months of the year, 383 titles were shelved and 259 were introduced, according to MediaFinder, an online database of U.S. and Canadian periodicals. Food was one of the most active categories for new launches, with 14 new titles started.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Irene Tinker on Street Food Vendors

Political scientist and street-food studies expert Irene Tinker is interviewed by Gourmet about the symbiotic relationship of urbanization and street food, gender dynamics in food preparation and purchase, and some of the hazards—and joys—of the trade for vendor and consumer alike.

Friday, October 09, 2009

Some Pesky Plants Taste Great

Generally invasive plants like garlic mustard, kudzu, and Japanese knotweed are pulled up and controlled because of their tendency to crowd out native species. Some are now also being enjoyed at the dinner table.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Sodium Reform

Donna Berry at Food Product Design explains why many in the food-formulating industry believe salt is the next target, despite conflicting opinions among medical and nutritional authorities regarding required daily intakes.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

More Great Street Food Vendors in Portland

Gourmet has also posted their top picks from Portland’s bustling street-food scene, which include Potato Champion, Northwest Hot Dogs, and the Cora y Huichol Tacqueria. Eight Great Street-Food Vendors in Portland, OR by Marisa Robertson-Textor

Monday, September 28, 2009

Portland's Street Carts are a Dining Destination

"Portland, Oregon, is leading a delicious dining revolution," writes Nancy Rommelmann for Bon Appetit.

Click through BA's Art of the Street Cart slideshow to check out some of Nancy's top picks for small food trucks and mobile carts in Portland.

We can't wait to explore these street carts while we're there for the 2010 IACP Annual Conference!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Social Media is helping DiSpirito Write a Cookbook

Chef Rocco DiSpirito is writing his new cookbook with input from his Twitter and Facebook fans. The media-savvy chef is turning to these social networks to gather opinions on which dishes he should include in his new healthy food makeover cookbook in the hopes of making his book more relevant to his readers.

Friday, September 11, 2009

'Gastronomica' Reissues the Julia Child Issue

Serious Eats reports that Gastronomica magazine has reissued the “The Julia Issue." Long-time Gastronomica readers will remember the Summer 2005 special issue featuring ruminations by Jacques Pépin, Paul Child, Alex Prud’homme and others on the iconoclastic American chef Julia Child. And while this special issue long ago moved into the realm of hard-to-find collectors' item, they’re bringing it back now in honor of Julia and the renewed appreciation of her genius in the wake of "Julie & Julia".

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Obama Administration Launches Food Safety Web Site

The Obama administration has rolled out a new Web site designed to streamline food safety information for consumers:

The site will put food-related information from all federal agencies in one place, including recall and contamination alerts and tips on how to safely handle food.

The Web site is a joint effort between HHS, the Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Hawaii Gets Farm-Friendly

Top chefs from the Hawaii Regional Cuisine movement have been redefining fine dining in the islands since the early 1990's by supporting small, local farmers. The San Francisco Chronicle offers some highlights of the latest crop of farm-friendly tables in Hawaii. Read more

Monday, August 24, 2009

Heirloom Heresy

Jane Black at the Washington Post claims the best tomato she ate last summer was not an heirloom tomato, and that 'heirloom' does not always equate to 'good.' Read full article

Friday, August 21, 2009

Bayless wins $100,000 for grower charity

IACP member Rick Bayless, owner of Frontera Grill in Chicago, won the inaugural season of Top Chef Masters, a cooking competition on Bravo television network. His prize — $100,000 to the charity of his choice, goes to the Frontera Farmer Foundation, a charity he started in 2003 to provide grants to small Midwestern farms.

Read full article

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Out of the Kitchen, Onto the Couch

Michael Pollan writes in the New York Times:

I was only 8 when “The French Chef” first appeared on American television in 1963, but it didn’t take long for me to realize that this Julia Child had improved the quality of life around our house. My mother began cooking dishes she’d watched Julia cook on TV: boeuf bourguignon (the subject of the show’s first episode), French onion soup gratinée, duck à l’orange, coq au vin, mousse au chocolat. Some of the more ambitious dishes, like the duck or the mousse, were pointed toward weekend company, but my mother would usually test these out on me and my sisters earlier in the week, and a few of the others — including the boeuf bourguignon, which I especially loved — actually made it into heavy weeknight rotation. So whenever people talk about how Julia Child upgraded the culture of food in America, I nod appreciatively. I owe her. Not that I didn’t also owe Swanson, because we also ate TV dinners, and those were pretty good, too.

Read full article

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Portland Conference Preview: IACP Visits City Hall

Culinary Professionals Visit City Hall from Mayor Sam Adams on Vimeo.

Left to right: Nate Tilden (Clyde Common Restaurant), IACP Portland Host City Committee Chair Mike Thelin (Bolt Services, LLC), IACP President Scott Givot (Gala & Co.), and Portland Mayor Sam Adams at City Hall in July.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A Bitter Reality for Locavores

“Local food’’ is all the rage, touted by adherents as offering better food, an environmentally responsible lifestyle, and self-sufficient communities. The first of those claims is sometimes true. Local tomatoes and corn may well taste better than those from afar. Beyond that, though, the local food movement is an affectation based on bad logic and bad economics, one that, widely adopted, would actually harm the environment and potentially impoverish millions. Particularly here in New England, it would also turn mealtimes into dull, pallid affairs. Read more at The Boston Globe.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Unusual Cookery Books

The Guardian's Word of Mouth Blog explains how unusual cookery books can be a recipe for mild obsession. WoMer and Taste of London festival fringe tweeter Catherine Phipps, aka Catily, talks shop with the experts. What's her greatest pleasure when it comes to cookery books and food writing? Read More

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

The History of Appalachian Cooking

Although Mark Sohn began to garden at the age of 5 and his love of food would later blossom in Paris, he's been particularly fond of Appalachian cooking for the last three decades.
"It became big for me because I thought that the food was particularly good," he said.
Sohn, a professor of educational psychology at Pikeville College in Kentucky, is also a foods author, columnist and cooking teacher.
During Sunday's West Virginia Humanities Council Little Lecture at the MacFarland-Hubbard House, Sohn shared some recipes and the history of Appalachian cooking with the audience.
Sohn began talking about prehistoric Appalachian natives who dined on mastodon and giant tortoise. Thousands of years later their successors favored whitetail deer, turkey, acorns, black walnuts and other delicacies as glaciers receded from present day Ohio.
About 1,000 years ago, corn and beans became a dominant food staple in Appalachia, Sohn said shortly before he offered up a recipe for succotash. Read more from The Charleston Gazette.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

High Rise Farms

The Pyramid Farm may be one way to address the needs of a swelling population on a planet with finite farmland, according to designers Dickson Despommier at New York's Columbia University and Eric Ellingsen of the Illinois Institute of Technology.

Design teams around the world have been rolling out concepts for futuristic skyscrapers that house farms instead of—or in addition to—people as a means of feeding city dwellers with locally-grown crops. Read more at National Geographic.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Bipartisan bill wants counts in plain view

Calorie-count disclosures would be required on menus at chain restaurants under federal legislation that has the backing of the restaurant industry and nutrition labeling watchdogs.

The Senate backers of two competing bills on menu labeling announced bipartisan, compromise legislation Wednesday that would require chains with 20 or more locations to disclose calories of food items on their menu boards or menus.

The legislation also would require such chains to give customers additional written nutritional information -- including amounts of fat and cholesterol -- immediately upon request. And it would create a national standard that would supersede the growing number of local and state calorie-disclosure mandates aimed at curbing obesity.

Read more from the Chicago Tribune.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Food Truck Nation

A new generation of lunch trucks is hitting the streets. They serve high-end fare such as grass-fed beef hamburgers, escargot and crème brûlée. As they rove cities like Austin, New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles, they alert customers to their locations using Twitter and Facebook. Their owners include highly trained chefs and well-known restaurateurs. Read more from The Wall Street Journal.

Results: Best Food Trucks

Katy McLaughlin from The Wall Street Journal sampled the food at 10 lunch trucks around the country that serve gourmet fare, from braised skate cheeks to bread pudding. One thing she learned: If a truck is famous for a particular item or dish, order that -- and skip the rest. Read the results of her coast-to coast review.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Taking Stock in Fish

Over the past 20 years, Community Supported Agriculture -- programs in which consumers buy shares in a local farm to receive shipments of fresh produce -- has proven popular, with about 12,500 farms across the country offering farm-to-home services today. Now, the CSA model has made the evolutionary leap from land to sea. Nearly 1,000 Boston-area residents this month will receive their first batch of wild-caught fish through the Gloucester-based Cape Ann Fresh Catch Community Supported Fishery program. Read more from The Wall Street Journal.

Monday, June 15, 2009

A Tour Guide Tames Lunch in Midtown

Julia Moskin reports in The New York Times on Zach Brooks, founder, editor, and chief correspondent of Midtown Lunch,, a three-year-old Web site that serves those who toil in Midtown and hope to find something decent and reasonably priced to eat on their lunch breaks.

The site brings a measure of order to the roiling chaos of the area, which has almost 3,000 food businesses — delis, pizza joints, trucks, carts and restaurants — and almost one million daily workers, according to the New York City Economic Development Corporation. Read more

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Taste of the Nation Los Angeles

Anyone who's been to Taste of the Nation Los Angeles knows this is not the kind of fundraiser where one politely pays more for a dainty plate of food. It's a gourmet feast where a little gluttony can fuel a lot of charity, featuring some of Southern California's best-loved chefs, deftly uniting Taste of the Nation LA the culinary with the altruistic.

Sunday's 21st annual Share Our Strength Taste of the Nation, which takes place locally in Culver City, includes cooking demos from XIV's Michael Mina and Border Grill and Ciudad's Mary Sue Milliken, a silent auction, waiter races and a mole cook-off between well-known Mexican restaurants, Moles La Tia, Guelaguetza and Tlapazola Grill.

But the big draw are the 46 booths where many of Los Angeles' most highly regarded restaurants will hand out samples of their signature dishes, including the Bazaar by Jose Andres, Mozza, Lucques, Craft, Palate Food + Wine, Church & State and Rivera.

Friday, June 05, 2009

IACP's "Room in the Bowl"

"Room in the Bowl: The IACP Gumbo Giveback Project", 132 pages of beautiful visual and written ruminations on the ingredients and experiences associated with Louisiana’s iconic dish, combines the work of top photographers and writers in an effort to give back to the culinary community. Proceeds from the book are divided equally between the Southern Food and Beverage Museum (SoFAB) and The Culinary Trust, the philanthropic partner of the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP). Edited by Jamie Tiampo and David Gallent.

Read the Times-Picayune book review.

Buy your copy at SoFAB or today.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

How Women Are Heating Up the Restaurant World

Move over, Mario. Take a hike, Emeril. Look who's cooking now: A handful to ambitious and talented female chefs who are running their own restaurants and creating compelling brands, that's who. Unlike Lidia Bastianich or Cat Cora, who've traded restaurant kitchens for television sets, these top chefs haven't found celebrity. Instead, they are focusing on crafting menus that delight customers--and turning a profit in tough times... 5/29/09

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Where to buy tickets for the 2009 IACP Conference, Events Open to the Public

Here's the link to buy tickets online for open to the public events at the 2009 IACP Denver Conference.

If you wish to attend a tour, master class or special event Buy your tickets here.

Some of the master classes offered are:

Wednesday, April 1
"New Trends, New Techniques" Part I featuring chefs Nils Noren and Dave Arnold from the French Culinary Institute. Class will be offered at the Sheraton Downtown at 9am.
Fee: $100

Part II features celebrity chef Andoni Luis Aduriz from Award winning restaurant Mugaritz, in Spain. Class will be offered at the Johnson & Wales Kitchen Auditorium, at 2:00pm.
Fee: $100

Get both sessions for $180

Saturday, April 4
"Sourcing Sustainably for Culinary Professionals", featuring chef Michel Nischan and presented by the Culinary Trust.
2:00pm at the Sheraton Downtown

Fee: $25

"The Art and Science of Artisan Cured Meats: Salumi from the Inside", featuring Armandino Batali.

2:00 p.m.

Fee: $90

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Andoni Luis Aduriz in Denver

Andoni Luis Aduriz

After following studies at the Hotel Management School of San Sebastian, he worked with renowned cooks such as Ramón Roteta, Hilario Arbelaitz, Jean Louis Neichel, Juan Mari Arzak, Fermín Arrambide and Pedro Subijana. He was part of the El Bulli restaurant staff (1993-1994), directed by Ferran Adriá. In 1996, he was head chef at the three Michelin starred restaurant, Martín Berasategui. Since 1998, he directs Mugaritz restaurant (19/20 from Gault&Millau, 2 Michelin stars), chosen as the 4th best restaurant in the world in April of 2008 by the British magazine Restaurant.

Recognized by the international press as "(...) the most important gastronomic genius in the world of the latest times", he appears on the pages of prestigious magazines like the Swedish Gourmet, the french Gault&Millau, the New York Times, Saveur, Gambero Rosso, Food & Wine, the Japanese Cuisine Kingdom and Specialités, which devote a large space to analyze his working technology and cooking style.

In 2002 he received the National Gastronomy Prize of Spain. In 2003, he was awarded the Euskadi Prize of the best restauranteur by the Basque Academy of Gastronomy. The Lo Mejor de la Gastronomía guide named him “Best Cook of the Year” and “Best Baker of the Year.” In 2005 he received his second Michelin star. He received the best qualification of three suns by the Campsa guide.

He sits on the Board of Directors of Euro-Toques, an international organisation of cooks with more than 3,500 professionals from 18 countries, created in Brussels in 1986 by request of the President of the European Community at that time, Jacques Delors.

He is the creator of Diálogos de cocina, an international meeting organised by Euro-Toques. Moreover, he is the author of Papeles de Cocina, the official publication of Euro-Toques in Spain.

He collaborates with some newspapers (El País, Noticias de Gipuzkoa, etc.) by writting opinion pieces.

He is the co-author of the books La joven cocina vasca (1996), El mercado en el plato (1998) and Tabula Bacalao (2003). Inside the collection Tabula, he published Tabula huevo (2000) and Tabula 35 mm (2007). Furthermore, he is the author of the Cuadernos de Mugaritz collection, which includes the books Foie gras (2002), Clorofilia (2004) and Bestiarium Gastronomicae (2006). He is also the author of Txikichef (2006). In the collection Libros del Atajo, in 2007 he published the Diccionario Botánico para Cocineros.

Chef Andoni will be presenting an advanced cooking demonstration on the latest trends and techniques during the 31st IACP Annual Conference, on Wednesday April 1, from 2 pm - 4:30pm at the Johnson & Wales Kitchen Auditorium. For more information visit This class is open to both members and non-members.

IACP Conference in Denver: 3 classes open to general public

Denver will soon be hosting more than 1,000 culinary professionals from around the world for the International Association of Culinary Professionals Conference, April 1 – 4, 2009.

Denver’s IACP members and other culinary professionals are truly rolling out the red carpet for us and we’re excited, in return, to share unrivaled access to some of the world’s top chefs through a variety of Advanced Level and Master Classes specifically designed to address new trends and advanced techniques. These include such famed culinary professionals as world-renowned Chef Andoni Luis Aduriz from Mugaritz in Errenteria, Spain; Chefs Nils Noren and Chef David Arnold of the French Culinary Institute; and Armandino Batali, patron saint of artisan cured meats from Salumi.

For the first time, IACP is opening a few classes to non-members. Whether you're a culinary student, a chef or culinary professional in Colorado or anywhere in the World, do not miss the unique opportunity to participate in the following classes:

Date: Wednesday April 1
Time: 9:00 am - 11:30 am
Place: Sheraton Hotel

“New Techniques in Cooking”
Presenters: Chefs Nils Norén and Dave Arnold, French Culinary Institute, New York

From the legendary French Culinary Institute in New York City, we are excited to present chefs Dave Arnold and Nols Norén in this class where the most recent cooking techniques will be demonstrated. The use of low-temperature cooking, sous vide, hydrocolloids, and other newer culinary techniques and ingredients will help you improve the way you cook. Participants will get a first-hand look into these techniques and equipments, as well as tastings of the products resulting from these methods. The FCI is one of the few culinary schools in the USA to offer classes in Culinary Technology, and this is a very unique and exclusive opportunity to participate in this class outside of New York city.

Date: Wednesday, April 1
Time: 2:00 pm - 4:30 pm
Place: Johnson & Wales University

New Trends: Vegetables on Center Stage
Presenter: Chef Andoni Luis Aduriz, Mugaritz, Errentería, Spain

Featuring one of the top chefs in the planet, we are proud to feature chef Andoni Luis Aduriz, whose two-star Michelin restaurant Mugaritz, in Errentería, Spain, has been named #4 in the world. Chef Andoni recently presented in Tokyo Taste and Madrid Fusion, and now he arrives in Denver to share with us his expertise on the latest trends. Chef Andoni will be preparing live 8 of Mugaritz's creations utilizing the most advanced culinary techniques and ingredients.

Date: Saturday, April 4
Time: 2:00 pm - 4:30 pm
Place: Johnson & Wales University

The Art and Science of Artisan Cured Meats: Salumi from the Inside
Presenters: Armandino and Marilyn Batali, Salumi, Seattle

What a unique opportunity this master class provides, to learn directly from one of the country’s patron saints of artisan cured meats, Armandino Batali, founder and Principal Salumist of Seattle’s celebrated Salumi. This tiny lunchbox of a restaurant/deli in the city’s historic Pioneer Square neighborhood is a Mecca for devotees of salami and other cured meats. There’s an omnipresent line of customers happily waiting for a sandwich of porchetta or cotecchino, or to pick up an order of sliced hot soprassata or culatello to go. The roughly 2000 pounds of cured meats made here each week are sold to walk-in customers, as well as restaurant chefs, delis and salumi enthusiasts across the country.

Salumi’s Seattle production facility manages to blend state-of-the-art processes with deep dedication to the hand-crafted traditions of salumi. Batali will share with class attendees in-depth information about the science of meats and what exactly transpires in the course of the curing process. He will address different styles of curing and explain each stage in the progression from raw meat to sublime salumi. Important issues such as USDA regulations and meeting integrated quality standards (such as HACCP) will be covered. In addition, Batali will share insights on educating and inspiring consumers about this world of artisan cured meats. His demonstration will feature a cotto salami (coarsely ground pure pork with pepper and spices), with detailed descriptions and samples of other cured meats from the Salumi repertoire.

For registration information, check out our website at

Monday, March 02, 2009

Sven Mill goes West with his Royal Blue

The launch of IACP’s cookbook For the Love of Food was held in Dallas 2005 during the IACP Conference. As one of the contributing authors from Europe, Sven went over for the book signing. On the way he made a stop in Chicago and visited Art Smith, who earlier that year had been to the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards in Grythyttan, Sven’s home village. The two souls had found each other around the buffet table of game, various salmon dishes and blue cheese. Sven served an opening dinner at the medieval castle in Örebro. Later the same year he was one of the local hosts of the IACP Culinary Experience to Grythyttan and Sweden.

Art and Sven met again when Gourmand Awards was celebrated in Beijing 2007. Sven gave a work shop on blue cheese and air dried game. Now Art invited Sven to come over again and back to Chicago. Art was about open his restaurant Table 52. Art introduced this gifted craftsman to some selected persons. To Mike McCloskey it was obvious the skills of Sven were perfect for further developing business opportunities and quality cheese at Fair Oaks Farms.

Fair Oaks Farms is owned by 9 local dairy farm families, one of which is the McCloskey family. Located in Northwest Indiana, just outside of Chicago, it is one of the largest dairy farms in the country. Fair Oaks Farms is home to some 30,000 dairy cows. Fair Oaks Farms also opens its’ farm to visitors so they can see for themselves 21st Century dairy farming and processing at work. Environmentally sound farming practices are used to protect the soil and water for future generations; and more than 3,000 acres are set aside to protect the streams and watersheds, while providing habitat for wildlife. All cow manure is processed in anaerobic digesters to become methane gas and ultimately electricity to power the farms and milk processing plants.

Now Sven is starting up production of his famous Royal Blue Cheese and also smoking and air drying local game and making spicy sausages. So far the reactions from restaurateurs in Chicago and Washington have been very positive. Now the rumor of a terrific new cheese has started to resonate among the thousands of visitors that come to Fair Oaks Farms about the marvelous Royal Blue…

Back in 1972, Sven started his professional career in the kitchen of Loka Brunn, a Swedish resort that got its royal privilege from King Adolf Fredrik in 1632. He formed his own company Mills Ost & Vilt. Many of the products from Sven’s personal production were used by Michelin stared restaurants and others in Sweden. He became an important contributor to the chefs of the New Nordic Cuisine era. Mills Cheese & Game produced wonderful offerings from the region’s bountiful supply of wild and fresh resources. His Royal Blue was an ecological cheese crafted from cow’s milk. During many years Sven delivered a buffet to His Royal Highness the King of Sweden in celebration of the Swedish National Day. Now he has sold the Swedish branch and put all his creativity into developing tasty product for the US market.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

World Gastronomy Summit

Nobu Mastuhisa, Ferrán Adriá, Joel Robuchon and Heston Blumenthal

by Yukari Sakamoto

Tokyo was the host to the World Gastronomy Summit on February 9-11, 2009. Top chefs from around the world presented, many of them including Japanese ingredients or techniques in their cuisine.
Former Prime Minister Junichi Koizumi opened the summit stating, “There is nothing better than eating delicious food that is good for us”.
Chef Joel Robuchon praised Japanese cuisine and its use of seasonality ingredients, delicate and meticulous presentation and use of umami. He also said that he noticed the reverence and pride Japanese have for produce and ingredients. He said that the cuisine has influenced his food.
Chef Pierre Gagnaire was enthusiastic about the quality of seafood in Japan. In particular, he is currently fascinated with tairagai, a large shellfish with a rich texture. He said that in Paris now, ingredients like yuzu and kombu are very fashionable ingredients.
Chef Nobu Matsuhisa talked about trying to get foreigners to eat raw fish thirty years ago. And, as people weren’t familiar with the texture, or even the concept of eating raw fish, he created some of his signature dishes now similar to sashimi salads with rich dressings, searing the outside of the fish, or creating ceviches.
Chef Ferrán Adriá said that Japanese chefs Seiji Yamamoto of Nihonryori Ryugin, chef Tokuoka of Kitcho and chef Nobu have changed his life. “Japanese food is pure and simple.” And that in his kitchen now he is using many sea vegetables and citrus fruits like yuzu.
It was evident that many non-Japanese chefs are curious and passionate about Japanese cuisine. They all agreed that there is so much to learn and that seasonality is key, the respect for ingredients, and the high quality of seafood, so fresh that much of it can be eaten raw. Many chefs have been influenced in their own cuisine with Japanese ingredients and techniques and that the will continue to explore the cuisine and culture of Japan.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Splendid Table in Mexico City

Lynne Rossetto Kasper interviews Mexican chef Margarita de Carrillo

The Splendid Table is a culinary, culture, and lifestyle program that celebrates food. On Saturday Feb. 28 award-winning host Lynne Rossetto Kasper will lead listeners on a journey of the senses through Mexico City with some of its most famous chefs.

Congratulations to Lynne and her crew for surviving such an intensive week long schedule intent on capturing the Mexican culinary soul.

Read more about Lynne's visit to Mexico City in Ruth Alegría's blog.

UPDATE: Listen to this show's podcast here.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Top Chef's Tom Colicchio Saves fellow IACP member's life

Top Chef's Tom Colicchio Saves Life
By Gina DiNunno

Tue Jan 20, 8:44 AM PST
Top Chef head honcho Tom Colicchio may be considered the "bad guy" when it comes time to axe one of the cheftestants during judge's table, but for now this restaurateur could be called a hero.
The reality-show judge saved fellow foodie Joan Nathan from choking to death during the "Art. Food. Hope." benefit in Washington, D.C. on Monday, according to the Internet Food Association. While being cornered by some bitter Top Chef fans who where less than thrilled about last week's elimination of Ariane, Colicchio heard a cry for help from another famed chef, Alice Waters, and immediately ran over to perform the Heimlich maneuver saving Nathan who had a chunk of chicken lodged in her wind pipe.
"I did what anyone else would have done and was just happy to be there," Colicchio told "I'm thrilled Joan's well."

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Mexico is guest country at Madrid Fusion 2009

Notimex Photos/Juan Carlos Rojas

Mexico is the country of honor in the seventh edition of Madrid Fusión, a top culinary event that will run through Thursday in Spain.

Patricia Quintana, Mónica Patiño, Ricardo Muñoz, Enrique Olvera and Bricio Domínguez will have the task of representing the nation's cuisine - old and new - with 70 other top chefs from around the world who are doing the same for their countries.

"More than being at the vanguard, I'd like to say that we'll give a personal interpretation of Mexican food," Olvera told state-owned news agency Notimex.

Mexican Ambassador to Spain Jorge Zermeño said the chefs "would promote Mexican products, our gastronomy, our dishes - we know it's going to be a success."

What all five seem to share is an almost religious reverence for traditional Mexican food, but a willingness to incorporate new methods into its preparation to foster a sort of natural evolution.

Click here to read the complete article.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Mexico City contends as top food city

Stan Sesser from the Wall Street Journal writes up a fantastic story about Mexico's city food scene.
Design by Joe LeMonnier

"It was my first bite of food in Mexico City, a snack called esquites, consisting of kernels of corn boiled in water with strips of jalapeno peppers and an herb called epazote, then garnished with lime juice, chili salt, mayonnaise and grated cheese. "One of the best things I've ever eaten," I wrote in my notebook. The cost: 70 cents at a street market.

A couple days later, at the restaurant Pujol, I was dining on a soup of squash blossoms topped with coconut foam, and venison coated with a pungent seasoning of Yucatán oregano and dried burnt chilies and served on a purple-banana purée. Washed down with high-quality wines from, of all places, Mexico's Baja Peninsula, the meal was $50 for the fixed-price dinner plus wine, and worth every penny."

Click here for the complete article.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Lenôtre passes away

Gaston Lenôtre, Who Built a Culinary Brand, Is Dead at 88
Published: January 9, 2009
Mr. Lenôtre was the founder of the restaurant, catering, retail and cooking school empire of the same name, and rejuvenated pastry making in the early 1960s.

To read the complete story click here.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Xochimilco Market, Mexico City

Ruth Alegria and David Aman of DocNo Productions paired up to make this fantastic video featuring Mexico City's colorful Xochimilco Market.  Join IACP Mexico´s country coordinator Ruth Alegria as she guides you through the different food stalls and points to dozens of indigenous ingredients available in the "mercado".  

Xochimilco Market, Mexico City from DocNO Productions on Vimeo.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Remembering IACP member Maria Teresa Berdondini

Maria Teresa Berdondini

IACP friends Maria, Lisa, Ruth, and Maria Teresa Berdondini (far right)

Maria Teresa Berdondini, who served as IACP Italy Country Co-Coordinator with me for the past two years, died in August after a long illness. Though she was unable to come to recent international conferences, something she loved to do, she did attend our Italian Section luncheon in Rome last year and had every intention of participating fully in the future; however, at certain point she wrote that she felt she was “fighting against windmills”. The following is taken from notes that she wrote about herself last year. I will always treasure the memory of this accomplished, energetic and beautiful woman who enriched my life, and the lives of others, by her friendship. --Elizabeth Wholey, Italy
* * *
Maria Teresa Berdondini, originally from Emilia Romagna, spent 18 years as a manager of five-star hotels in Italy and Spain before settling in Montecatini Terme, Tuscany, with her husband, Giuseppe, who is also in the travel business. She served as IACP Italian section co-representative, was a licensed AIS Sommelier and culinary demonstrator, and a member of Slow Food. Her passion for research in the food and wine fields enabled her to lecture about the origin and evolution of Tuscan cuisine to many travelers, including groups from the Smithsonian. In 1997 she established Tuscany by Tuscans, an Italian travel consultancy, which coordinated programs for individual travellers as well as for food professionals. Tuscany by Tuscans was created with a desire for freedom in travel, and she designed personalized itineraries into undiscovered areas, visiting lesser known art treasures, artisans practicing traditional crafts, and small agricultural producers and wineries. Her company was recognized by Conde Nast Traveler Magazine as a Top Travel Specialist in 2005, 2006 and 2007.
* * *
I would like to share this memory of Maria Teresa with my fellow IACP members. I first met Maria Teresa at the Montreal conference in 2003 when we sat together at lunch. A warm and engaging personality, she made sure that I met other international members during subsequent days. We kept in touch after the conference and started making plans to meet again at the next conference. In 2005 we shared a room together at the Dallas and had an incredible time. In 2007 my husband died of cancer and Maria Teresa was diagnosed. I never deleted any of the messages that Maria Teresa sent me that year. Even as she battled cancer, undergoing operations and chemotherapy, she kept sending me messages of hope and expectations, that I finally would visit her in Italy and that she would be able to visit me in Mexico. The last message that I received was her 2008 New Years greeting. She never gave up hope for herself and for others. She will be missed.
--Ruth Alegria, Mexico

IACP Italian Section Third Annual Autumn Luncheon

Florence, Italy, November 2008

For IACP members scattered around Italy, our annual get-together is a happy reward at the end of the busy tourism season. This year, we met in Florence near the San Lorenzo market and the Medici Chapel, at the Osteria Cipolla Rossa, owned by a butcher from the central market and two talented chefs from respected Tuscan restaurants.

After a brief welcome statement, Elizabeth Wholey read members’ tributes to Maria Teresa Berdondini, Italy Country Co-Coordinator with Elizabeth for the past two years, who died in August after a long illness.

Following the announcement of Sonia Di Centa as the new Country Coordinator, which was met with enthusiasm, the seventeen guests introduced themselves and brought the rest of us up to date on their activities.

And then we proceeded to chiacchierare, to chat the afternoon away, while being served a series of delicious and creative small plates.

Over time, we have learned some rules for making a success of this event. (Note: It takes a few tries to build up the momentum and for people to learn that this is something not to be missed.)

Our Recipe for Success:

First and foremost, great food! Pick an interesting location, a popular city that is fun to visit, and a restaurant near the train station. Keep the price affordable. Have a member in that city choose a venue that will be appropriate for an afternoon gathering. (Judy Witts selected it this year.) Enlist that person to help get the group together, making contact with friends and inviting family members and interested non-IACP members, as well. We also put out the word to the IACP board and we welcome guests from outside of Italy. This year we were joined by Dede Wilson and her husband, Dave, from Amherst, Massachusetts, who happened to be in Tuscany at the time. If possible, we provide lodgings or arrange for a discount at a hotel. Lucy Luhan generously offered her Villa Lucia near Lucca for out-of-towners.

We always have our luncheon at the same time every year, in late November after the olive harvest, a date people can plan around, and we send out the invitations well in advance. In 2006 the location was a Tuscan villa, and in 2007 it was held in Rome at a beautiful rooftop garden restaurant, the Hotel Mediterraneo, owned by the family of IACP member, Jo Bettoja.

We emphasize that this is a relaxed, convivial get-together, not an IACP membership drive, though we do have applications available and some of our guests have signed up.

Over the years, new friendships as well as joint ventures have been formed, and we always come away full of good food, wine and inspiration.

If you are in Italy at the end of November, 2009, you are invited to join us.

Elizabeth Wholey

Chair, Culinary Tourism Committee

Umbertide, Umbria, Italy