Posts Tagged ‘Chicago’


Monday, December 10th, 2012

First Phenom at Palm Beach Food & Wine Festival
By Francine Cohen

Of course you wouldn’t be wrong to refer to Chef Stephanie Izard as the fourth winner of Bravo’s Top Chef competition, but really you’d sound like an ignoramous for shirking your restaurant industry history and not fully recounting her provenance; thereby giving her credit where credit is due (while looking really smart yourself for having and sharing this knowledge).

This isn’t the first time we’ve mentioned Izard in INSIDE F&B and it’s true that this fourth season winner may not have been in front of the camera when this influential television program began, but to her “1st” credit she is the first (and only) woman to have won Top Chef. What else has Izard done first? Well, she helms the restaurant that was the subject of Saveur magazine’s ( first ever restaurant review and her first James Beard Award ( nomination for Best New Restaurant came around the same time she was first nominated for Food & Wine Magazine’s Best New Chefs list (

Just being honored by her peers and the media for leading the way isn’t enough for this chef. This year Izard decided to make her first foray to the Palm Beach Food & Wine Festival where today, along with Beard Award winning chef Stephen Stryjewski (of New Orleans’ Cochon, Chef Julien Gremaud (Pistache French Bistro, West Palm Beach –, and Jennifer Reed (of The Sugar Monkey, West Palm Beach – she’s cooking the Southern Hospitality: Pig & Goat lunch (

Before having to face all those hungry south Floridians we warmed up Izard with a few questions. See what she has to say about her first

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Sunday, March 13th, 2011

Only one great bartender will win the title of bar star and $5,000 from the National Restaurant Association
as the National Restaurant Association Calls for Mixologists to Shake It Up at Star of the Bar Competition

The National Restaurant Association invites professional and amateur mixologists to step out from behind the bar and into the spotlight for the Star of the Bar competition at the 2011 International Wine, Spirits & Beer Event (IWSB). This nationwide search for the country’s most creative cocktail will start online with video submissions, then bring the finalists to Chicago to compete live for the Star of the Bar title and $5,000 grand prize.

Held May 22-23 at Chicago’s McCormick Place, IWSB is the restaurant and hospitality industry’s only event focused exclusively on improving restaurant and hospitality bar programs. The Star of the Bar competition is sponsored by Bacardi.

“The Star of the Bar mixology competition provides a great opportunity to showcase creativity and skill in bartending,” said C.W. Craig Reed, Convention Chair for NRA Show 2011 and Director of Food and Beverage, Broadmoor Hotel. “Last year’s winner credits Star of the Bar with helping him launch his mixology career. We’re looking forward to watching this year’s competitors turn fresh ingredients into innovative signature cocktails and become the next Star of the Bar winner.”

Interested individuals should submit on YouTube™ a 2-minute video of themselves preparing their best signature cocktail by 11:50 p.m. Central Daylight Time on April 1. The contestant must complete the entry form on and include the original written recipe and must use at least one product from the Bacardi portfolio.

Voting will take place on through Monday, April 11, 2011 until 5 p.m. Central Daylight Time. Six semi-finalists will be flown to Chicago to mix, stir and shake their signature cocktail at the International Wine, Spirits & Beer Event on Sunday, May 22, 2011. IWSB attendees – including some of the world’s leading alcohol experts, producer, and buyers – will help narrow down the field to the top three, who will then go on to compete live for the title at “Restaurants Rock” – the official party of the NRA Show and IWSB 2011 – that evening. In addition to earning Star of the Bar bragging rights and creating incredible industry connections, the winner will also receive a $5,000 cash prize.

No purchase is necessary. Limit one video submission per person. Contest open only to legal residents of the 50 United States, 21 years of age or older. Void where prohibited or restricted by law. See Official Contest Rules on the IWSB website. Please bartend responsibly; depictions of unsafe or reckless mixology will not be accepted.

Now in its fourth year, IWSB will be held in McCormick Place’s Grand Ballroom in conjunction with NRA Show 2011 (May 21-24), and gather brewers, vintners and distillers, leading beverage experts, beverage alcohol buyers and more in one exclusive area. The event will provide wide-ranging solutions for more successful and profitable restaurant and hospitality bar programs. In addition to exhibits by established and emerging wine, spirits and beer producers from around the world and exclusive food-alcohol pairing stations, IWSB attendees may attend expert-led, educational sessions that guide restaurateurs and bar managers to success from the alcohol producer to the restaurant guest.

The annual National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show is the largest single gathering of restaurant, foodservice and lodging professionals. The NRA Show 2011 will be held May 21-24 at McCormick Place in Chicago. The event attracts tens of thousands of attendees and visitors from all 50 states and 100+ countries, and showcases more products, services, innovative ideas and other growth opportunities than any other industry event. For more information, visit the Show Web site at

Founded in 1919, the National Restaurant Association is the leading business association for the restaurant industry, which comprises 960,000 restaurant and foodservice outlets and a workforce of nearly 13 million employees. Together with the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation, the Association works to lead America’s restaurant industry into a new era of prosperity, prominence, and participation, enhancing the quality of life for all we serve. For more information, visit our Web site at

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