chefs to watch

City Grit Launches ‘Next Big Thing’ Dinner Series

Top Chef isn't the only way for chefs to break onto the scene.

Top Chef isn't the only way for chefs to break onto the scene.Photo: Elk Studios

Sarah Simmons often hosts chefs from around the country at her Nolita culinary salon, but now she's bringing the focus back home by spotlighting up-and-coming New York City chefs. Simmons and her team are hand-picking chefs who are set to open their first restaurants in six to twelve months to experiment at City Grit. First up was the sold-out dinner last night with Jonah Miller, who's worked at Gramercy Tavern and Maialino. The next meal in the series is on April 25 with Greg Baxtrom, the former chef de cuisine at Blue Hill at Stone Barns and sous-chef at Alinea. "It’s really hard to get your first restaurant off the ground," Simmons tells Grub. "I want to give these chefs the platform to not only test out menus for their upcoming concepts, but to get in front of potential investors and build their personal brands." Seats to Baxtrom's meal cost $75, but bragging rights that you knew about a chef before everyone else are priceless.

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