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Chefs and Their Side Projects


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So, I cracked open the Sunday NY Times today, and almost choked on my two Tello eggs (sunnyside up), toasted Kossar's bialy and sliced Stokes' farmer's market tomato.

Right there, page 2, bottom left is the Barney's New York ad. And (Chef, I thought) Mario Batali, who will be more than happy to sign copies of his new book on Wednesday, October 29th from 6 PM to 8 PM, is, and I quote,


I'm assuming that's a watch. Wine and Yummy Batali Nibbles will be served.

Now, I get the whole Crocs thing...jeez, I even own a pair (in blue). And I get the whole pots and pans and kitchen equipment thing - the guy is a chef, after all.

But now you're shilling friggin' watches - and the food in the restaurants that I've recently eaten at (Lupa, Tarry Lodge) is still damn good. How many chefs can do this?

And do the customers that go to his restaurants really care?

Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

Tasty Travails - My Blog

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Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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All I really care about is, what's a Tello egg? :laugh:

Hey, if someone wants to pay Batali money to shill watches....go for it. Fame's fleeting, take the money and run. If I was in the market to buy a watch, would Batali be the person I'd turn to for advice on time pieces? Probably not.

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id be tempted to say that chefs getting sponsored by knife, pots, pans, stoves, cheeseburger etc companies are more in the danger of "selling out"...

Philosophically, why do you think Mario Batali does what does?

My guess, he wants to make money, he's digging the fame and he knows that he is damn lucky that he's able to do it with something that he genuinely loves. I bet he thanks whoever he believes in that he can work in a field that he loves, that is his passion.

What does 'selling out' mean? If he takes a day or two or three to shoot a photo ad campaign, pockets the money and opens another excellent restaurant, where is the sell out?

Making money by cooking is damn hard. Anyone want to argue that point?

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It's only selling out if the quality of the original work that got him or anyone else there suffers for it. IMO, Rocco sold out. I don;t begrudge the money and the fame if they can keep doing what got them there in the first place.

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

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Twitter - @docsconz

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Perhaps it has a heart monitor in the watch?

He does have that tickin' time bomb look . . .

Still, I like Mario for his obvious skill and passion. If I were in his bright rubber shoes -- I'd hang with Gweny and REM and put my name on a fancy watch.

Peter Gamble aka "Peter the eater"

I just made a cornish game hen with chestnut stuffing. . .

Would you believe a pigeon stuffed with spam? . . .

Would you believe a rat filled with cough drops?

Moe Sizlack

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