Lutèce; courtesy of chef André Soltner (wearing toque).
The legendary New York City French restaurant Lutèce closed in 2004, but it will be reborn for one night only, on April 16, to benefit University Settlement. Alsace native André Soltner—now the dean of classic studies at the International Culinary Center—opened Lutèce in 1961, just as America’s obsession with food and cooking was beginning. “When we opened 50 years ago, there were restaurants that served canned or frozen food. We were very focused on the best ingredients you can get,” remembers the pioneering chef. During his 35 years behind the stove, Soltner’s celebrity and flawless classic French cuisine attracted New York’s glitterati and the country’s most respected food lovers, including Julia Child.
Soltner will bring back the spirit of Lutèce by orchestrating an extravagant French wine dinner of iconic dishes such as seafood en croûte and tournedos Rossini: filet mignon with foie gras and Madeira sauce. The cost for entry to this once-in-a-lifetime reboot (with dessert from Jacques Torres) starts at $3,000, which will aid the University Settlement’s many programs aimed at uplifting low-income families and immigrants through education, decent housing, and improving physical and emotional well being. Tickets here.
For those whose interest in the French classics is piqued, we asked Soltner to describe some of the incredibly complex dishes that wowed guests during his restaurant’s prime. “People nowadays think classic French cuisine was heavy, but when it was done the right way then it was not. It was very tasty,” he says. Click through the slideshow to see the Endangered French Classics.
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More French Masters
Chef Dan Barber. // © Andrew Hetherington
While the Euro may still exist, and kitchen refrigerators aren’t posting online status updates just yet, other predictions made during The World in 2012 Festival hosted last year by The Economist proved to be on point—like the euro-zone crisis and Facebook's first public offering. With global hunger issues on the rise, and today's chefs garnering as much attention as rock stars, the future of food will be a hot topic at this year's The World in 2013 Festival, held December 6 and 8 in NYC. Chef-activist and writer Dan Barber of Blue Hill at Stone Barns will discuss the current global food crisis, focusing on issues of worldwide obesity, agricultural sustainability and soaring food prices.
Facebook co-founder Sean Parker and Daniel Ek, founder of social music platform Spotify, are slated to kick off the two-day event with a technology and society panel at Thursday’s gala dinner. A roster of notable figures in politics, business, science and the arts—including chef Barber—round out the line-up on Saturday, leading discussions and debates on topics ranging from human nature to issues in energy, health care and the world’s emerging economies.
The Economist is selling full package tickets for both Thursday night’s dinner and Saturday’s speaker panels for $550. Separate tickets are $495 and $75, respectively. A schedule of the festival’s events, speakers and topics is available here.
Follow Jasmin on Twitter @jasminsun.
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Ceviche at Pestle & Mortar // © Jasmin Sun
“Especially in NYC, you don’t always have time to eat at a restaurant—sometimes you just need to grab something and go,” says Will Edwards of Peruvian-inspired Pestle & Mortar, which was among the finalists for best market vendor at the eighth annual Vendy Awards on Saturday.
In an act of meta proportions, F&W asked some of the amazing street food specialists attending the awards event for food truck recommendations of their own. They’re not part of any foodie craze, they’re not Plan B-career types. They’re auténtico, and they’re super delicious. »
© Lucy Schaeffer / Creamy Shrimp Casserole
Top food bloggers will cook to fight hunger at a public event this Friday. Recipe site Cookstr and crowd funder Zokos are teaming up to throw an innovative charity potluck that will include dishes from The Artful Gourmet's Kristen Hess, JustcookNYC's Justin Schwarz and the team behind Rendezfoods. Attendees must RSVP through Zokos by noon tomorrow with a $20 donation to get unlimited drinks from Brooklyn Brewery, Vinport and Red Jacket Juice as well as blogger-cooked offerings. Those inspired to do so can also bring their own favorite sharable dishes. The event will run from 6 to 8 p.m. at Cookstr’s downtown New York headquarters, and all proceeds will go to City Harvest, an organization working to end hunger in New York City.
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Chefs Make Change
Mario Batali and U2's The Edge; Ken Goodman Photography
Among the superstars in Food & Wine's Chefs Make Change coalition, Mario Batali is making power moves to raise funds for his charity this summer. The Mario Batali Foundation, which helps feed, protect and educate children, just announced two celebrity-studded events starring Bill Clinton. The former president will headline an inaugural MBF Honors dinner in New York on September 9 at Batali's fine-dining flagship Del Posto Ristorante, where guests will include Jimmy Fallon (tickets $1,500 and over).
On September 10, Clinton, the chef, and his creative friends will play golf at the third annual MBF Swing Session Celebrity Golf Classic (see: Batali with U2 guitarist The Edge at last year's event, left). The all-day outing features a chartered boat ride from Manhattan to Liberty National Golf Club across the Hudson, a clinic with PGA player Hunter Mahan and food from Marea's Michael White and Del Posto chef Mark Ladner. Slots start at $3,000 ($10k for a foursome). Club Hill Media produced a video tease if you want a closer look at how these blockbuster events are done.
Tickets: MBF Honors Dinner
3rd Annual Swing Session Celebrity Golf Classic, Liberty National Golf Club, NJ
The popular party in New York City’s Madison Square Park celebrates its 10th anniversary this month. Pit masters from around the US will hawk samples of their specialties. Expect the longest lines at Big Bob Gibson’s Bar-B-Q stand, where Chris Lilly (photo) dishes out his famously succulent pulled pork. New this year: screenings of films featuring barbecue and a performance by famed Texas rocker Alejandro Escovedo. June 9-10; bigapplebbq.org
Related: Best New BBQ Joints in the US