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Star Chefs: Italy Bound | Food in America Survey - Mario Batali

When we asked "Which of the following four chefs would win on Survivor?" 12 percent of the voters chose Mario Batali, an owner of New York City's Babbo, Lupa and Esca. That put him dead last, behind Iron Chef Japanese, Masaharu Morimoto (41 percent); Keith Famie, a former competitor on Survivor (31 percent); and Bobby Flay, owner of Manhattan's Mesa Grill (16 percent). Frankly, we were surprised by Batali's less-than-stellar showing, given his powerful presence in the New York restaurant world and his superior cookbooks. His latest, The Babbo Cookbook, offers well-photographed recipes that exactly duplicate the dishes (and presentations) served at his groundbreaking trattoria: sweet pea flan, lamb's tongue with black-truffle vinaigrette, and, yes, his famous mint "love letters" with spicy lamb sausage. Anyone for a recount?

 

--Salma Abdelnour

Published August 2002
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