Welcome to Chef's Stirrings, Chef Magazine's monthly news highlights of what's going on in the foodservice industry and chef world. For daily news and online exclusives, please visit Chef's Stirrings blog.
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In this issue of Chef's Stirrings:
• Charlie Trotter's Funeral Draws the Cream of the Culinary World
• Restaurant Operator Innovations Awards Nominations Now Open
• Chef Evan Hennessey Blends Above the Competition for 2013 Vitamix Challenge Crown
• Chef's Academy's Students Against Hunger Event Raises 13,000 Meals For Local Food Bank
• Les Dames d'Escoffier NY Welcomes 14 New Members
• GoDaddy Partners with US Foods
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The Editors, Chef Magazine
Charlie Trotter's funeral draws the cream of the culinary world click HERE.
The National Restaurant Association (NRA) is now accepting nominations for the third annual Operator Innovations Awards (OI Awards). The awards celebrate restaurant operators that are transforming the industry with extraordinary creativity and commitment to innovation and excellence in execution.
An independent panel of operators from both commercial and non-commercial backgrounds will select three finalists in each of five categories: Health & Nutrition, Marketing, Menu Development, Sustainability and Technology. A single winner in each category as well as an Innovator of the Year will be selected by the panel and revealed during the marquee event Destination: Celebration, held , in conjunction with the NRA Show.
Nominations will be accepted online at Restaurant.org/Show/OIAwards through .
Evan Hennessey, chef at Stages at One Washington in Dover, N.H., successfully out-blended the competition during the recent 2013 Vitamix Challenge at the StarChefs.com International Chefs Congress in New York City. Hennessey, along with chefs from across the country, submitted original Vitamix recipes for a chance to compete in this year's uniquely styled blending contest. Six finalists, including Hennessey, were selected and tasked with creating a dish that showcased the Vitamix blender in innovative, creative and delicious ways.
Hennessey's flavorful, winning dish consisted of rockweed and fish skin crusted scallop mousse, encapsulated Castelvetrano olives, Boston Marrow squash custard, tarragon, agretti, oyster gel chips and acqua pazza. The dish was inspired by the New England area that Hennessey calls home.
"The focus of the dish was the ocean. I wanted to create the overall sense, texture and taste of the environment. Right down to including some agretti, a local sea grass," said Hennessey.
While competing against the other top chefs was no easy task, Hennessey credits his win to his ability to show versatility in techniques through a multitude of textures and temperatures he created using the Vitamix blender.
According to the judging panel, which was made up of Rocco DiSpirito, Elizabeth Falkner, Daniel Holzman and Richard Martin, Hennessey's hot and stabilized Boston Marrow squash custard and ocean theme placed him above the competing chefs.
Sponsored exclusively by Vitamix, the global leader in high-performance blending equipment, the Vitamix Challenge took place on . Participating chefs had 60 minutes to prepare a single dish that showcased their originality and creative blending techniques to judges. Points were awarded based on the unique use of a Vitamix, taste and overall dish presentation.
"The Vitamix Challenge provides us with a great perspective of how top chefs are using our products to develop and perfect their own unique creations," said Christy Bezuijen, commercial marketing manager, Vitamix. "We're grateful to be a part of chefs' inspirations and culinary triumphs."
The Chef's Academy, the Culinary Division of Harrison College, a 110-year-old, private sector college serving more than 4,000 students worldwide, has announced that the school's Students Against Hunger event raised more than 13,000 meals for the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina. With more than 275 attendees present for the event at the school’s Morrisville, N.C. campus, culinary and pastry students showcased their talents through preparing a variety of sweet and savory foods for guests to enjoy.
Students Against Hunger marked a capstone event for The Chef's Academy's pastry students, who created dessert buffets to be judged by attendees and chefs. Darrick Williams received the People's Choice award for his buffet that featured a range of unique dishes, most notably his candied bacon chocolate chip cookies. The Chef's Choice award went to Terrel Smith, whose buffet items all incorporated blueberries, featuring a wedding cake with a delicately crafted sphere as one tier.
To further support the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina, pastry and culinary students formed "Sweet" and "Savory" teams in a competition to see which division could collect the most canned food items for the nonprofit organization. Team Sweet, led by Chef Sherry Stolfo, The Chef’s Academy’s chef instructor, won for the third consecutive year.
Les Dames d'Escoffier New York (LDNY)-the founding and largest chapter of the philanthropic organization Les Dames d'Escoffier International (LDEI)- inducted 14 new members at a celebratory reception.
Welcomed into their roster:
Joan Brower of The Dilenscheider Group. Director of this leading public relations agency's Wine and Hospitality practice, Joan has worked on a diverse range of wine, spirits, destination, cruise line and luxury hotel accounts. The leitmotif in all of her clients' campaigns is gastronomy.
Donna Capobianco Boland, Cooking Instructor and Recipe Developer. A culinary counselor at Cooking by the Book, Donna has developed recipes for the iconic Joy of Cooking and several other books. Her passion is helping to educate the next generation of women in the food publications business.
Joan Coukos, Founder, President and Chocolatier of Chocolate Moderne. Joan has successfully merged her business acumen with a passion for chocolate in this luxury artisan chocolate company that is celebrating its tenth year and has won the sofi Gold Award for Outstanding Chocolate in both 2012 and 2013.
Cathy Coluccio Fazzolari, Co-owner of D. Coluccio & Sons, Inc. Cathy has a lifetime experience in the Italian Food Importing business, with a passion for finding authentic Italian products. Cathy also teaches cooking with an emphasis on the healthful benefits of food.
Sharon Franke, Director of Kitchen Appliances and Technology at the Good Housekeeping Research Institute. Sharon Franke is the go-to expert on all things appliance-related in the publishing industry and beyond.
Marilyn Krieger, Ph.D. Director of Public Relations for Winebow, Inc. A leading national importer of fine wines, spirits, and sakes from around the world, Marilyn is a member of NY Women’s Culinary Alliance and holds a Certified Specialist of Wine from the Society of Wine Educators.
Susan Lifrieri-Lowry. After 15 years as a restaurant pastry chef, she is now a Professor of Baking and Pastry Arts at City Tech., CUNY, where she also administrates the Anna Nurse Scholarship Workshop Series at City Tech., CUNY. Susan spent eleven years at The French Culinary Institute, seven of them as Director of Faculty Administration.
Rachel Litner. Founder of the eponymous Rachel Litner Associates (RLA) Public Relations and Strategic Marketing agency in 1996, she counts Cuisinart and Waring among her long-standing clients. Her experience as a magazine editor as well as a corporate PR and marketing executive gives RLA a unique perspective on the needs of the media.
Maureen Luchejko. Food Stylist, Recipe Developer/Editor and Culinary Educator, Maureen has held staff positions at Good Housekeeping, Woman’s World Magazine and Family Circle. Her styling clients include Disney Productions, Bravo Network and Univision.
May Matta-Aliah. A Certified Wine Educator and president of In The Grape, an organization dedicated to wine and spirits education. With over 12 years of experience in the industry, May brings a wealth of knowledge and insight to all her wine presentations.
Hiroko Shimbo. Chef-instructor, consulting chef, cookbook author and widely recognized expert in Japanese cuisine, Hiroko’s most recent book, Hiroko's American Kitchen, won the 2013 IACP Cookbook Award in the American Category.
Adeena Sussman. Food writer, restaurant critic, cookbook author and restaurant consultant, Adeena counts her greatest accomplishment in "Pies for Prevention," a bake sale she and her sister initiated in honor of their mother to raise money women living with ovarian cancer, that to date has raised nearly $100,000.
Susan Ungaro. President of The James Beard Foundation since 2006 and since 2010 spearheaded annual food conferences to foster dialogue and action to improve our Food System. Susan was named one of The DailyMeal's 50 Most Powerful People in Food in 2011 and 2012.
Marika Vida. Wine Director at the Ritz Carlton Central Park and the owner of Vida et Fils Wine Consulting. Marika is Certified Sommelier through the Court of Master Sommeliers, and Certified Specialist of Wine.
Diane Forley. A LDNY member in the past and after a spell in California is back in New York. Diane now owns and runs Flourish Baking Company in Scarsdale – an experience based on vegetable products and dishes.
For more information contact: Dame Ronnie Campbell firstname.lastname@example.org
GoDaddy, the Web's top platform for small businesses, is now helping US Foods customers leverage technology to operate more efficiently. The partnership is being announced at today’s Food Fanatics Live event in Los Angeles. A major benefit for US Foods customers is access to tools like GoDaddy's Website Builder and Locu Menu Manager, which make it easy to quickly create a beautiful digital identity without a big budget or technical expertise.
"GoDaddy is making it super simple for anyone to leverage the power of the Internet," said GoDaddy General Manager Presence and Commerce Raj Mukherjee. "Without a website, it's difficult, if not impossible, to compete in business. Website Builder and Locu give restaurant owners exactly what they need to create a full-featured website in a matter of minutes."
As a food company and leading distributor, US Foods provides products and business solutions to more than 200,000 customers, including independent and multi-unit restaurants, hospitals and schools across the United States. GoDaddy's Website Builder provides hundreds of customizable, professional designs and many ways to evolve a website's appearance that give the business owners complete control of their digital identity. Locu technology enables website owners to manage and update menus automatically.
"Each day restaurant operators juggle a number of duties just to keep their businesses running smoothly and dedicating a huge amount of time to creating a website isn't something many have the time or energy to do," said Jim Osborne, vice president of e-commerce for US Foods. "GoDaddy and Locu brought a great solution to our customers that allow them to have a great looking website that automatically updates as they change their menus so they can focus on their day-to-day business."
In addition to menus, Locu reaches more than 200-million consumers per month through its partnerships with Yelp, YP.com, Foursquare, TripAdvisor and Facebook, which enhances the restaurants exposure to new customers who often search for local restaurants from their mobile phone.
GoDaddy serves more than 12 million customers worldwide, mostly small businesses looking to have a strong online presence without devoting personnel or big budgets to make it happen.
"We exist to help small business of all shapes and sizes kick ass online and that's what we're doing for US Foods," said Bob Lund, SVP Distribution Channels at GoDaddy.
To learn more about how to grow your business online, visit: GoDaddy.com.