Politico hears that Aquavit’s Marcus Samuelsson has been chosen to help White House chef Christeta Comerford cook a state dinner honoring the prime minister of India. Why is this news? Because apparently, very few outside chefs have gotten such an honor in the past— Hubert Keller was the first guest chef at the White House when he cooked for the Clintons, and Patrick Clark is the only one who cooked for a state dinner during the time of the Bushes and Clinton. And there definitely weren’t any guest chefs during the Reagan and Johnson years, when Harry Haller was in charge: “I would have been very upset if they had done that,” he says. But the Obamas are all about the celebrity cameos. White House chef Sam Kaas visited several restaurants to decide between Charlie Palmer of Aureole, Michel Nischan of the Dressing Room in Westport, Connecticut, and Dan Barber of Blue Hill, among others. Wonder what his expense account looked like.
State Dinner: W.H. Invites Guest Chef [Politico]