Doggy Bag: Today's Odds and Ends
You asked for it: Grub Street New York published its Grub Report earlier this week. Think of it as a Twitpic of the state of the nation's restaurants, captured, collectively, by about a dozen critics. Anthony Bourdain, Jonathan Gold, Gael Greene, Ed Levine, Alan Richman -- some majorly serious bros. Among them is Michael Nagrant of the online mag Hungry. Now, while answers to some mighty predictable questions (When and how will fine dining rebound?) skew equally predictable, with predictably New York-y self-absorption, Nagrant pulls a oh-no-he-din't on the question of who are the three most important chefs in the U.S. today. Steady yourself:
Guy Fieri has more frat boys wearing sunglasses on the back of their heads at a single Dave Matthews concert than Thomas Keller has served meals in his lifetime. Go to any non-foodie cocktail party in the nation and I'm willing to bet seven out of ten people won't even know who Ferran Adrià or Grant Achatz are. The road to eating at Robuchon for the majority of people goes through Rachael Ray. Ray and Fieri are the culinary versions of marijuana, the food-TV gateway drug to eating and cooking either bigger, better, and badder food, or, for lazier folks, a lifetime of the cooking equivalent of smoking really bad weed.Yeah, Nagrant named only two, but those two are the equivalent of delivering a massive ass blaster in the crowded dining room of a Michelin-starred establishment. How's that taste, Bourdain?