Tonight marks the return of Top Chef spin-off Top Chef All-Stars. Every toque appearing on the show is a winner already, as it offers the opportunity for everyone to market their restaurants through various show-related promotions. For example, Beechwood, currently employing All-Star Jamie Lauren, will offer an all-night happy hour today with discounted bar eats and libations. But it’s Fabio Viviani who is really making a sacrifice to highlight his appearance on the show. Wherefore art thou, Fabio?
Viviani’s publicity team sent us word that the chef is personally hosting weekly viewing parties of the show, open to the public, at both of his restaurants. How’s that, Fab? Considering that the restaurants are 40 miles away from one another, it seems an impossibility that he could possibly appear at both, unless Viviani uses one of those Saddam Hussein-type body doubles or, more likely, is magic (I mean, the dude merely has to read the contents of a Wheatabix box to charm the pants off of fans).
It turns out not to be prestidigitation, so much as pure hustle, something we know the cookbook author and frequent guest chef has in spades. Viviani’s team clarifies that the chef actually will be at both places every Wednesday, with Fabio planning to watch the show twice every week (our condolences) with appearances at both places.
First, Viviani will show the East Coast edition of Top Chef All-Stars at his Moorpark restaurant Firenze Cafe at 7:00 P.M. The second that show ends, while everyone in Moorpark is calling everyone in L.A. to announce the show’s results, Fabio will drive to L.A., perhaps making it in time to mop his brow before the 9:30 P.M. start of the show at Toluca Lake’s Firenze Osteria. Basically, stay off the 118 freeway every Wednesday night, unless you dream of sharing the road with one crazed Italian driver.
If watching the show (while Fabio checks his watch) appeals to you, show up at his Moorpark or Touluca Lake restaurant at 6:30 P.M. or 9:00 P.M. respectively.
Cafe Firenze, 563 West Los Angeles Ave. Moorpark. 805-532-0048.
Firenze Osteria , 4212 Lankershim Blvd. Toluca Lake. 818-760-7081.