Win a Date With Thomas Keller; Year-end Lists AboundMix up your holiday charitable giving by entering a raffle for a coffee date with Per Se’s Thomas Keller or Ferran Adrià of Spain’s El Bulli. [NYT]
Related: Ferran Adrià, Molecular Gastronomist—Who, Me? [NYM]
On his No Reservations holiday special, Anthony Bourdain spoke with a veterinarian who explained that foie gras production is not the demonic act it has been portrayed as by animal-rights groups, so eat up! [Eat for Victory/VV]
If Amy Sacco didn’t convince you of the growing synergy between restaurants and real estate, consider that Centovini has just struck a deal with luxe condo Soho Mews that offers not only delivery to the building but also the option to have executive chef Patti Jackson provide in-home cooking. [NYP]
The Ham That Drives Men MadNew York Magazine has gone Spain-crazy this week. Adam Platt sates his bottomless hunger at Boqueria, and Rob Patronite and Robin Raisfeld interview Spain’s most illustrious chef, Ferran Adrià of El Bulli. Let Grub Street pile on, then, with talk of the secret society of Spanish pork.
This society may be unofficial, but we belong to it. It is made of men and women who have tasted the meat of the celebrated pata negra, or black-foot pig, and will do anything for more. “Once you taste ibérico, you can’t compare it to anything else,” Bar Jamón chef Andy Nusser has said. The society’s holy grail, though, remains tantalizingly out of reach for Americans — even ones with a deep affinity for Spain.
Back of the House
Mr. Nasty Throws Open the Phone Lines; Mr. Hospitality Throws PunchesIn today’s dining dirt, Spain comes to Manhattan, barbecue comes to Fort Greene, and Mr. Hospitality brings the pain.
• Danny “Mr. Hospitality” Meyer ponders hugs, serves up a knuckle sandwich. [Esquire]
• Gordon “Mr. Nasty” Ramsay opens up the lines; a feeding frenzy ensues. [Eater]
• Pushcart-prize finalists announced. [Street Vendor Project]
• Picholine buddies open up a Fort Greene smoke joint serving up “real NYC barbecue.” Whatever that is, exactly. [Strong Buzz]
• On a sobering note, Michael Pollan forecasts the dangers of centralized food production and the specter of increased regulation in the veggie world: “Food poisoning has always been with us, but not until we started processing all our food in such a small number of ‘kitchens’ did the potential for nationwide outbreaks exist.” [NYT]
Greatest Chef Ever to Make Best Meal Ever, Give or TakeThe most admired chef in the world doesn’t have a restaurant in New York, Paris, or Las Vegas. He doesn’t appear on TV. His name is little known among the general public, but chefs speak it with awe, in low whispers. He is Ferran Adrià, and he is coming to New York on Saturday.
We kid you not: Adrià, who heads up the kitchen at Spain’s El Bulli, probably rates as the most influential cook in the world. As Rob and Robin explain, New Yorkers will finally have a chance to see him at work when he and nine other leading Spanish cooks demonstrate their “molecular gastronomy” techniques for Spain’s 10: Cocina de Vanguardia, at Guastivino’s, in the magazine. At $300 per person, the event, which includes food and wine samplings throughout the day and a tapas lunch, ain’t cheap. But neither is a Manhattan tablecloth meal. Nor round-trip airfare to Spain.
Buy tickets here.
Spain’s Ten: The Summit