Top Chef head honcho Tom Colicchio took home top honors winning the coveted Outstanding Chef title. Timothy Hollingsworth, former Bocuse d'Or competitor, was named Rising Star Chef, and Best New Restaurant went to Michael White's Marea. To check out the complete list of winners, read more
The list honors a variety of people in the industry, from upcoming chefs like Timothy Hollingsworth (Rising Star Chef) and Bryan Voltaggio (Best Chef Mid Atlantic) to culinary bigwigs such as Tom Colicchio (Outstanding Chef) and Rick Bayless (TV Food Personality).
Even Food Network stars like the Barefoot Contessa (Television Show, In Studio or Fixed Location) and Alton Brown (TV Food Personality) have been recognized. The awards not only highlight extraordinary chefs and restaurants, but cookbooks, websites, and journalism. The category that I was most excited about is Best New Restaurant — three of them are in San Francisco! The winners will be chosen and announced on May 3. To take a look at the full list of nominations, read more
The two-day culinary Olympics, known as the Bocuse d'Or, took place yesterday and today in Lyon, France. A 28-year-old chef, Geir Skeie, from Norway won the competition. There was much hope in the food industry that the American competitor, Timothy Hollingsworth, would win. However, Hollingsworth didn't even place. A Swedish chef took home the silver, while the French chef walked away with the bronze. This year was the first time that the Americans made a conscious effort to win the competition. Thomas Keller and a team of American chefs searched the country for a possible contender to represent the US. In July eight American semifinalists were announced. Hollingsworth won the highly-publicized competition in September and spent the next several months preparing for the finals at a special training facility near the French Laundry in California.
In the Bocuse d'Or finals each chef has to prepare two dishes: a seafood entry and a meat entry. The food is judged by 24 chefs from 24 countries. Two-thirds of the score goes to the quality of the food, while the final third counts for presentation.
Hollingsworth has yet to comment on the competition, but he is no doubt feeling (like most American foodies) a little disappointed in the outcome. To check out a huge gallery of images from the cooking competition, read more
This year has been a momentous one for the Olympics — not just in sports, but in the culinary arena as well. The Bocuse d'Or — considered the Olympics of food and the world's most prestigious award for French cuisine — is scheduled for Jan. 28 and 29, 2009 in Lyon, France. The rigorous selection process, however, gained plenty of attention in 2008.
It all began this Summer, when we caught up with Hung Huynh at the Aspen Food and Wine Classic, and the Top Chef Season 3 winner revealed his wish to be a semifinalist — which he was. In July, the American Bocuse d'Or advisory board, which includes Daniel Boulud, Thomas Keller, and Tom Colicchio, selected eight semifinalists to compete for the coveted chance to represent the US. The judges appointed were even more prestigious, with highly respected chefs such as Jean-Georges Vongerichten involved in choosing a winner. On September 26 and 27, the semifinalists faced off in a culinary challenge hosted by Al Roker, Food and Wine editor Dana Cowin, and John Besh at the Epcot Center.
After two full days of competition, Timothy Hollingsworth, a sous chef at The French Laundry, was selected as the US representative. Currently, Hollingsworth is training directly under Keller as he prepares to represent America in next month's championships, where Paul Bocuse, the French founder of the competition, will be on hand to observe and officiate. No American chef has ever won the final competition and the closest one has come to seeing gold was sixth place in 2003. Could Hollingsworth be the first?
Over the weekend, eight semi-finalists competed to see who would represent the United States at the Bocuse d'Or, a prestigious international culinary competition. Timothy Hollingsworth, a sous chef at the French Laundry, was selected as the winner. Hollingsworth now has three months to prepare for the French showdown in January. He'll train at a special facility created by Thomas Keller in Yountville, California with head coach Roland Henin.
No American chef has ever won the final competition and the closest one has come to seeing gold was sixth place in 2003.
The chefs and their assistants had to prepare two dishes — one fish and one beef — in front of a live audience. The dishes were judged on a variety of factors including presentation, texture, harmony of flavor, sophistication, and creativity. In the end, Hollingsworth's elaborately garnished Atlantic cod with Hawaiian blue prawns and sea scallops and equally complex beef tenderloin roasted in bacon with beef cheeks and oxtail won.