Celebrating Our #BrandNewBrand at Upland in NYC

This week, OpenTable launched our brand new brand. Because we love what can happen around the restaurant table, we feted this milestone with a feast at Upland in Manhattan, along with chefs, restaurateurs, and some of our favorite local foodies.

Chef Justin Smillie opened Upland in conjunction with restaurateur Stephen Starr late last year to critical acclaim, and he and his staff created an incredible dining experience that highlighted his heralded California-inspired cuisine with an Italian twist. The mouthwatering menu included seared squid with shaved fennel, cara cara orange, and crispy shallots; slow-roasted lamb ribs with pickled artichoke, white almonds, and esplette; gnudi with black trumpet mushrooms, leeks, walnuts, parsley, and sorrel; whole striped bass prepared under salt with broccoli de ciccio and preserved lemon relish; sherry-glazed chicken with frisee, sunchokes, roasted garlic, and cured egg yolk; and rum cake with persimmon and whipped cream.

Just as the table is just the start, this week is just the start of our rebrand celebration. On March 11, we’re launching our #100opentables campaign. We’ll be giving away 100 dining experiences at iconic restaurants around the world, including Eleven Madison Park in New York, Bar Tartine in San Francisco, and Dinner by Heston Blumenthal in London. The campaign will feature a diverse collection of cuisines and experiences, such as “The Cellar Experience” at Dan Barber’s Blue Hill at Stone Barns, the private chef’s table for four in the skybox at Restaurant DANIEL, and a five-course pasta tasting menu at flour + water. The campaign will culminate with 100 dining experiences in 23 cities on one night: April 9, 2015. Visit the #100opentables microsite www.100opentables.com next Wednesday for a chance to reserve your table!

Photos by Hal Horowitz.

Spotlight on a Spotlight Winner: Congratulations to Kaci Griffin!

Kaci Griffin (OpenTable’s No. 1 Fan! No, really. She said so herself!), won a Spotlight certificate last week for her correct guess at our Philadelphia Secret Spotlight. She’s taking a home $50 of food and drink at Panini’s Trattoria. We checked in with Kaci to find out what some of her favorite Philly restaurants are and who she’ll share the Spotlight with!

OT: What is the name of your hometown?

KG: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

OT: What is your favorite food?

KG: My favorite foods are seafood and sushi!

OT: Can you name some of your favorite restaurants?

KG: Wow! Favorite restaurants. Well, one is Panini’s Trattoria. Also, Chifa, Devon, and Buddakhan. I have a lot of favorites! Oh, yes, all of Stephen Starr restaurants, too, especially El Vez.

OT: Who are you taking to dinner with your free Spotlight certificate?

KG: The special person in my life will dine with me.

OT: Well, since you’re our #1 fan, maybe that means someone from OpenTable. I call dibs!

Kudos to you, Kaci. And, remember to make your guesses and you could be one of our lucky winners in the weeks to come!

 

James Beard Foundation Awards Nominees 2010: Congratulations!

The list of James Beard Foundation Awards nominees for 2010 has been released. Congratulations to everyone whose hard work and great talents have been recognized by the industry’s most prestigious organization. The winners will be announced on May 3, 2010, but there aren’t any losers in this round-up. Nominees include:

James-Beard-Awards-2010-nomineesBEST NEW RESTAURANT
* Bibou, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Chefs/Owners: Pierre and Charlotte Calmels

* Flour + Water, San Francisco, California
Chef/Partner: Thomas McNaughton
Partners: David White and David Steele

* Frances, San Francisco, California
Chef/Owner: Melissa Perello

* Marea, New York, New York
Chef/Partner: Michael White
Partner: Chris Cannon

* RN74, San Francisco, California
Chef: Jason Berthold
Owners: Michael Mina and Rajat Parr

OUTSTANDING CHEF AWARD
* José Andrés, The Bazaar by José Andrés and Zaytinya
* Tom Colicchio, Craft and Colicchio & Sons
* Charles Phan, The Slanted Door

OUTSTANDING PASTRY CHEF AWARD
* Amanda Cook, CityZen at Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C.
* Nicole Plue, Redd, Yountville, California

OUTSTANDING RESTAURANT AWARD
* Boulevard, San Francisco, California
Chef/Owner: Nancy Oakes
Owner: Pat Kuleto

* Daniel, New York, New York
Chef/Owner: Daniel Boulud
Owner: Joel Smilow

* Highlands Bar & Grill, Birmingham, Alabama
Chef/Owner: Frank Stitt
Owner: Pardis Stitt

* Spiaggia, Chicago, Illinois
Chef/Partner: Tony Mantuano

OUTSTANDING RESTAURATEUR AWARD
* Tom Douglas. Restaurants include Dahlia Lounge, Etta’s, and Lola.

* Pat Kuleto, Pat Kuleto Restaurant Development & Management Co., San Francisco, California. Restaurants include Boulevard, Epic, Martini House, Waterbar.

* Richard Melman, Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, Chicago, Illinois. Restaurants include Big Bowl, Hub 51, Osteria Via Stato, Tru, and Wildfire.

* Stephen Starr, Starr Restaurant Organization, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Restaurants include Alma De Cuba, Buddakan, Morimoto, and Parc.

OUTSTANDING SERVICE AWARD
* La Grenouille, New York, New York
Owners: Charles Masson and Gisèle Masson

* Michael Mina, San Francisco, California
Chef/Owner: Michael Mina

* Vetri, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Chefs/Owners: Marc Vetri and Jeff Benjamin

OUTSTANDING WINE AND SPIRITS PROFESSIONAL AWARD
* Paul Grieco, Hearth, New York, New York

OUTSTANDING WINE SERVICE AWARD
* A16, San Francisco, California
Wine Director: Shelley Lindgren

* Frasca Food and Wine, Boulder, Colorado
Wine Director: Bobby Stuckey

* Jean Georges, New York, New York
Wine Director: Bernard Sun

RISING STAR CHEF OF THE YEAR AWARD
* Timothy Hollingsworth, The French Laundry, Yountville, California
* Grégory Pugin, Veritas, New York, New York

BEST CHEFS IN AMERICA
Best Chef: Great Lakes
*Bruce Sherman, North Pond, Chicago, Illinois
* Alex Young, Zingerman’s Roadhouse, Ann Arbor, Michigan

Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic
* Cathal Armstrong, Restaurant Eve, Alexandria, Virginia
* Jeff Michaud, Osteria, Philadelphia, Pennsyvlania
* Michael Solomonov, Zahav, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
* Bryan Voltaggio, VOLT, Frederick, Maryland

Best Chef: Midwest
* Colby Garrelts, Bluestem, Kansas City, Missouri
* Alexander Roberts, Restaurant Alma, Minneapolis, Minnesota
* Lenny Russo, Heartland, St. Paul, Minnesota

Best Chef: New York City
* Michael Anthony, Gramercy Tavern
* Wylie Dufresne, wd-50
* Daniel Humm, Eleven Madison Park
* Michael White, Marea

Best Chef: Northeast
* Michael Leviton, Lumière, West Newton, Massachusetts
* Tony Maws, Craigie on Main, Cambridge, Massachusetts
* Marc Orfaly, Pigalle, Boston, Massachusetts

Best Chef: Northwest
* Ethan Stowell, Union, Seattle, Washington
* Jason Wilson, Crush, Seattle, Washington

Best Chef: Pacific
* Michael Cimarusti, Providence, Los Angeles, California
* Jeremy Fox, Ubuntu, Napa, California
* David Kinch, Manresa, Los Gatos, California
* Matt Molina, Osteria Mozza, Los Angeles, California
* Michael Tusk, Quince, San Francisco, California

Best Chef: South
* Zach Bell, Café Boulud at the Brazilian Court, Palm Beach, Florida
* Scott Boswell, Stella!, New Orleans, Louisiana
* John Harris, Lilette, New Orleans, Louisiana
* Michael Schwartz, Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink, Miami, Florida

Best Chef: Southeast
* Sean Brock, McCrady’s, Charleston, South Carolina
* Linton Hopkins, Restaurant Eugene, Atlanta, Georgia

Best Chef: Southwest
* Bryan Caswell, Reef, Houston, Texas
* Ryan Hardy, Montagna at The Little Nell, Aspen, Colorado
* Rick Moonen, RM Seafood at Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada

Read more about the James Beard Foundation and the 2010 Awards, click here. Purchase tickets here. And, reserve your seat at the next James Beard House dinner in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village for a unique dining experience in the birthplace of modern American gastronomy.