Sunday night Eater threw a party for its 2015 “Young Guns,” up-and coming chefs, bakers, sommeliers, and other promising talents in the food industry. A funny thing happens when chefs receive awards. They work their asses off at the event thrown in their honor. Stranger still, they seem to love doing it. At the superglam Viceroy in Santa Monica Monday night, six of the honorees sweated it out to show off the skills that got them there.
Sara Hauman of San Francisco’s Huxley presented corned beef tongue with bread and butter pickles, Ryan Rogers from Feast BBQ in Louisville served oysters with a shaved iced potlikker which he made using a fascinating and unusual contraption. Deuki Hong of Baekjeong, NYC, served kimchi fried rice in adorable tiny skillets, then cracked me up by pretending to cook in one of the tiny skillets.
Tyler Bienvenu of Joe’s Stone Crab in Miami served up tender BBQ in a Carolina sauce, along with his trademark grilled cheese cooked between two irons. Colin Stringer and Andon Whitehorn of Nani in OKC fried okra then topped it with negi and bonito, which I absolutely loved. We also loved Holdfast, Portland’s Joel Stocks’ cornbread madeleines presented in a flurry of shaved Parmesan. The house restaurant usually represents and represent CAST did with a spectacular pork belly with romesco, ramps, radishes, and smoked potatoes. As the sun set the party really started hopping under the glow of the red ambient lighting. It seemed like everyone from the LA foodie scene was there. The joint was packed! There were free-flowing cocktails and Sapporo pretty much everywhere you looked. If it were still cool, I would say the party was off the chain. But it’s not cool anymore. What is the current vernacular the kids are using? Later in the evening the Young Guns were presented with champagne bottles engraved with their names. Other Young Guns included Alicia Kemper, Rachel DelRocco, Angela Dimayuga, Lisa Ludwinski, Micah Melton, Annie Rupani, Sebastian Dumonet, Rebecca Merhej (Love & Salt! woohoo!), Alex Levin, and Cappie Peete. Congratulations!!!