Over the weekend, Alinea chef Grant Achatz tweeted “We finally finished it” with a link that led to a page on Amazon revealing the cover for his long-in-the-works autobiography, which he co-wrote with business partner Nick Kokonas.
The book, Life, on the Line: A Chef’s Story of Chasing Greatness, Facing Death and Redefining the Way We Eat, is set for release on March 3, 2011. It will recount Achatz’s rise to becoming one of the world’s most celebrated and creative chefs, while grappling with with stage-4 tongue cancer—and beating it. We talked to Achatz back in May about the project and he said it’s one of the hardest things he’s ever worked on.
You can pre-order the book now for $18.15 (normally $27.50), forget about it and be pretty stoked when that package shows up next March.
Alinea vet Jeff Pikus will be executive chef at Maude’s Liquor Bar, the latest venture from Gilt Bar owner Brendan Sodikoff. Pikus, currently in the kitchen at Gilt Bar and who has cooked with Ryan Poli at Perennial, will oversee the menu for what Sodikoff describes as a Paris dive bar.
Sodikoff said the the space will be more of a rustic “bar with food” and will feature a raw bar, lots of shellfish and grilled items, housemade sausage, steak tartare and maybe even steak frites. He also mentioned that Gilt’s roasted bone marrow and crispy fries will likely appear on the menu at Maude’s.
Want to see a master chef create some incredible cocktails? He’s slowly revealing some of the secrets behind what will appear on the menu at his forthcoming restaurants, Next and Aviary, including a really cool bubble-tea-like take on a gin and tonic with about 100 cucumber balls in the glass. The Alinea chef clearly is having a good time and enjoying experimenting and wants to take us all along for the ride.
The Michelin Guide, the most prestigious rating system in dining and lodging, will introduce a Chicago guide in November. The book, the third in North America along with New York and San Francisco, joins the elite network of global guidebooks to rate restaurants and hotels on a variety of factors including comfort, food and prices. Not that we need Michelin to validate what we already know, but the addition of Chicago to its stable tells the rest of the world that we do, in fact, have an amazing culinary scene. It’s likely that spots like Alinea, Topolobampo, Charlie Trotter’s and Everest will receive three stars, the guide’s highest rating. Even getting one or two stars is a big pat on the back from the Michelin crew. What we think is funny that, for a group that is so meticulous with its rating system, you’d think they’d have done a better job of proofreading their press release, which says the guide “will be written in American.” Too funny.
What other restaurants do you think will get two or three stars?