James Beard Awards 2014 + Michael Murphy’s Annual Rosé Bowl

In celebration of the James Beard Foundation Awards, Michael Murphy hosts the Annual Rosé Bowl at Jonathan Waxman’s Barbuto restaurant in Manhattan. Nominees, celebrity chefs, and culinary luminaries, including Daniel Patterson (Coi), Mario Batali (Babbo), and Ruth Reichl, were in attendance. Sneak a peek at the fun in our slideshow below.


And, congratulations to the 2014 James Beard Foundation Award winners, including:

Outstanding Chef
Nancy Silverton, Pizzeria Mozza, Los Angeles, California

Outstanding Restaurant:
Slanted Door, San Francisco, California

Outstanding Restaurateur
Barbara Lynch, Menton, Boston, Massachusetts

Outstanding Service
The Restaurant at Meadowood, St. Helena, California

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10 Top Mom-Owned Restaurants in America

On the heels of the amazing Cherry Bombe Jubilee in March and in honor of Mother’s Day, we are pleased to highlight 10 top restaurants that are owned by women who are also mothers. Being a mother is one of the world’s most demanding jobs, as is running a restaurant. Yet, the restaurateurs behind these establishments have managed to successfully — though not effortlessly — tackle both!

1. Acquerello, San Francisco, California
Owner: Suzette Gresham, mom to Bibiana, 22, and Azaria, 18.
Awards include: 2013 Diners’ Choice Award for Top 100 Best Overall Restaurants in America.
Rave review: “Acquerello is always a wonderful dining experience. There is nothing on the menu that is not absolutely delicious and inventively presented. Ask the sommelier, and you will have the perfect wine recommended.”
Mom quote: “Passion makes up for a lot — lack of intelligence and lack of experience. If you are passionate about what you are doing, whether you are raising children or running a restaurant, you have a fighting chance. I think in life that is the main thing is just believing that you can do and finding a way. Chefs are kind of like firemen and policemen. We rush right in. We do what we have to do, and we don’t think about sometimes ourselves. It’s that attitude of ‘I can do it, I can fix it and I can save it.’ Maybe it is foolish on some level, but it is what you do and how you are as a person.”

2. Beast, Portland, Oregon
Owner: Naomi Pomeroy, mom to August, 13, and stepmom of two.
Awards include: 2013 Diners’ Choice Award for Top 100 Fit for Foodies Restaurants in America.
Rave review: “In my top three foodie experiences of all time. Each dish on this six-course tasting menu was beautifully executed. The service was impeccable, and the feel of the restaurant was fun, but romantic and quaint.”
Mom quote: “I want to set an example for my own daughter, and, hopefully, for a lot of kids (girls, especially), so that they can see how both work and family life can be balanced. I have a really good relationship with my daughter, and I have a great career. I hope to stand as an example of the idea that you can be both a mother and a career woman.”

3. Bibou, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Owner: Charlotte Calmels, mom to Julie 8 ½, Jeanne, almost 7, and Eloise, 20 months.
Awards include: 2013 Diners’ Choice Award for Top 100 Fit for Foodies Restaurants in America.
Rave review: “This is the second time I’ve been to Bibou, the first being just about a year ago. Just like last time, the food, service, everything was fabulous. One of my absolute favorite restaurants in Philly.”
Mom quote: “When you become a mother, you want to do everything perfect for your newborn: you want to make time for them, for you to recover, maybe extensive nursing. Our industry does not allow any time for any of this! I was back to work [in the office] 48 hours after giving birth! I got really lucky with our last daughter Eloise, as she would come with me to the restaurant daytime, and often stay at night. No ‘sleep/eat’ schedule for her, but we were together!”

4. Hundred Acres, New York, New York
Owner: Victoria Freeman, mom to sons Rolan, 24, and Marlon, 21.
Awards include: 2014 Diners’ Choice Award for Top 100 Best Brunch Restaurants in America.
Rave review: “If you love Cookshop, you’ll love Hundred Acres. The ambiance, food, and service all live up to the high standard, just a little north. Can’t wait to go back, but don’t want too many people to find out about it.”
Mom quote: “When I was at the restaurant, I would worry about the boys, and when I was home, I worried about the restaurant. At some point, I made a decision that when I was with them, I would be with them and not think about the restaurant. It’s also hard because my husband owns the restaurants with me, so we would talk about business at the dinner table. We had to put a halt to that.”

5. Joan’s in the Park, St. Paul, Minnesota
Owners: Joan Schmitt and Susan Dunlop, mothers to Dan, 33, Mark, 30, Kelly, 27 and Lindsay, 26.
Awards include: 2013 Diners’ Choice Award for Top 100 Best Overall Restaurants in America.
Rave review: “A Google search for trendy St. Paul restaurants brought Joan’s in the Park to our attention. Customer reviews were fantastic so we decided to give it a try. What an fabulous find! The food, service and atmosphere were all exceptional. Joan isn’t just a name here, she greeted us warmly, checked in on us during the meal and offered a great local recommendation when we inquired about a place to stop for a beverage and to check on the Minnesota Wild game. We completely enjoyed our two-hour dining experience and look forward to coming back!”
Mom quote: Joan says, “My kids didn’t mind too much when I had to miss things, and we just prioritized what the really important events were that would always attend and let the little ones go.” Susan adds, “We’re really lucky at this point because our kids are grown and work at the restaurant. I would imagine for somebody getting into this now with little kids,  it would be really difficult.”

6. Lenoir, Austin, Texas
Owner: Jessica Maher, mom to Hollis, 3, and expecting baby #2 any day now.
Awards include: 2013 Diners’ Choice Award for Top 100 Fit for Foodies Restaurants in America.
Rave review: “Superb food, great choices, unusual ingredients and attentive, knowledgeable servers combine for a one-of-a-kind dining experience. Depending on your particular perch and your fellow guests, the close quarters promote a friendly atmosphere where fellow foodies can compare notes about wine and the exotic combinations of ingredients. Chef Duplechan is an Austin treasure–part mad scientist and part artist. Mmwahh! (You’re welcome for not inserting an emoticon here with a French guy kissing his fingertips.)”
Mom quote: “I was talking to my friend Sarah from Rich Table and she is just like, I feel guilty all the time, like here is something in my son’s lunch that I didn’t make myself. It’s so silly; we put all these pressures on ourselves to do things, but at the same time that’s why we are where we are because we are really ambitious and we are striving for perfection. We are never satisfied, so we keep trying to make it better. I’m sure a lot of people are like that anyway, but I definitely have friends who are not in the restaurant industry who don’t put those pressures on themselves at all.”

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10 Things You Need to Know About Top Chef Seattle Episode 4

Tom chuckles at CJ’s plan to undermine John Tesar at every turn.

Full disclosure: Top Chef Seattle is driving me a little bit batty this season. I don’t feel as though I’m getting to know several of the contestants — and I know some others too well. We’re barely seeing Bart, Brooke, Eliza, or Chrissy. This episode featured a lot of two cheftestants who could have gone home but didn’t. Given this disconnect, I wish they’d lower the field to 10 from the get-go so that we could really get to know competitors’ strengths, weaknesses, and personalities. Okay, I’ll get off my soapbox and on to the pertinent points. 

1. On last week’s episode, the talented Kuniko went home for undersalting a batch of potatoes. They were more like scalloped potatoes, so it’s not something you can adjust after it’s baked. While Josie of the raw turkey should have gone home, she had immunity, so they sent Kuniko packing. But — rejoice! She is back in Last Chance Kitchen. I’m pulling for you, Kuniko!

Try as they may, the Canlis cannot stop staring at Hugh Acheson’s commanding brow.

2. His fellow cheftestants believe that John Tesar is living up to his reputation as Dallas’s (and now Top Chef’s) most hated chef. He’s got an ego and a lot of opinions as a chef of his age and experience might have, but I think they need to be less sensitive to what he says in the break room. Jeez.

3. Speaking of hating John, in addition to Josh not being a fan, from almost the first frame of last night’s show, CJ makes it clear that he’s gunning for John.

4. His gun must have jammed as John Tesar, and not CJ, walked away with the QFC win — and immunity.

5. Naomi Pomeroy from Beast likes her red meat slightly more well done than you might think.

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