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Live from studio 1A in Rockefeller Plaza. [APPLAUSE] Welcome back.
The Today Show [UNKNOWN] 2008. I'm [UNKNOWN] with Natalie [UNKNOWN].
Anne Curry had to leave a little bit early today.
And we have got a lot of fun in store
for this hour. Yes we do. One of the things
we're doing, and [UNKNOWN], it's a cook off. And we're
gonna explain the details of the cook off in just
a little bit. But it's big, big, big. Not just
really good chefs, we're talking about the best chefs right
here- Three guest chefs. On our plaza, so we're in
for a real treat coming up now. All having fun,
but first I think we gotta get cooking. That's right,
and I gotta go inside and get ready. All right,
bye honey. Okay, it is time for our annual food
and wine fest cook off to determine Who is the
best? Food and Wine magazine put together a list of
the ten best chefs. We've got three of them here
today, ready? Michael Psilakis raise your hand. [APPLAUSE] chief and
owner of Anthos here in New York City. Ethan Stowell
from Seattle where he's the chef and owner of Union.
[APPLAUSE] And Sue Zemanick who joins us from the big
easy, she's the executive chef at Gautreau's. Guys welcome Sue,
what do you think about the challenge? Are you ready?
I'm ready to go. Are you sure? I'm positive. These
guys look like they're tough. This is not going to
be easy. [CROSSTALK] They started already? They're calling you cheaters
over here on this side. We just wanted to start
a little early is all. So wait These newbie chefs
are gonna take on the pros. These are three alumni
from Food and Wine. They are the one, the only
Rocco Dispirito, celebrity chef and cook book author. [APPLAUSE] Anita
Lo Lu set up here at a New York restaurant
Bar-Q this month. Let's hear it for Anita. [APPLAUSE] And
Devon Cason, executive chef at Daniel Ballou's cafe, Welcome to
All. Both of these guys are gonna create meals and
the meal is a hamburger. Burger, of course. A burger.
Classic. > That seems so easy. It's the acid test
for chefs. Is it? Absolutely. But how do you make
a burger unique? You know what, why don't you tell
him how you make a burger? How do you make
a burger unique? It's a bun to meat ratio, right?
Is that what you say. Well, yeah, it's all about
the meat to bun ratio. Meat to bun ratio. Yeah,
absolutely. Okay, you guys get busy, cuz wait, hold on.
Not yet. Not yet. Not yet. We've got some special
judges down here who are going to make the final
decisions. Gail Simmons oversees The Food and Wine Magazine, she's
the judge on Bravo's Top Chef. Let's hear it for
Miss Gail. Chef, cookbook author Marcus Samuelsson is celebrating the
opening of his new restaurant here in New York City.
Welcome to you. And Curtis Stone is the star of
TLC's Take Home Chef. Judges, we appreciate you being here.
Okay Any advice for these guys down here? What's the
advice [INAUDIBLE] This is what the chefs eat after a
day at work. So they should be well versed on
how to make a good burger. Is that right. What
do you think [INAUDIBLE] We've eaten a lot of burgers
though, so they're going to need to impress us. Okay.
We're going to have 45 minutes. Everybody has already started.
Hold on. Okay. Let's set the timer for 45 minutes.
Is it set? All right. Ready. On your mark, get
set, start cooking. That was anti climactic. They already did.
All right. We're gonna check back and forth with these
guys a little bit. But first let's go inside to
Ms. Natalie. We are back Yes. with the six chefs
who have teamed up for our annual food and wine
chef cook off. Eat and Stole is on the new
chefs. The best new chefs team So how's it going
so far? Going so far. It's going so far. Okay,
so you're making some mayoli and some fries. I think
we're gonna win. You better win, yeah, come on. You're
the new hot new chef. All right. So what are
you guys doing over here? Cooking up some burgers. The
burgers. Are the fries working? Turkey. What is that? What
is that? Sue's makin some- Ooh. Tomato jam. Ooh. What
is that? It's called Coldcut [CROSSTALK] Okay. We'll see what
he does with that in a minute. Okay. Now we're
moving over to the experienced alumni. First of all Rocco,
I heard you were taking pictures while everyone was working
their tails off. Was I really? I'm sorry guys. I
understand, that's what you were doing. Very good observation. [UNKNOWN]
pictures. Okay. But let me say this, we're all winners
cuz we're Best New Chefs, right guys? Oh, everybody [UNKNOWN].
Look at that. Can we just acknowledge that right now?
We're not acknowledging. You're so politically correct. Okay wait, now
tell me what's going on here. What are you guys
making? This is a pork shoulder with bacon, walnut- Pork.
Beets, and [UNKNOWN]. Chow? What's chow-chow? Chow-chow, pickled vegetables. Pickled
vegetables, you mix some mustard in it. It's a little
British condiment. I like that, so no ones doing beef
burgers, right? No, you know what? I think pork stacks
the deck in your favor. Really? It's all about the
bacon. How much time do we have on the clock
for these guys. Cuz we had 45 minutes. I think
we're winding down, are we? Do we have a clock?
Let's see we don't have a clock. We don't know
if we do but it's. We got a couple more
we got about 20 more minutes I think until we
get the taste test and the judges will give us
their opinion. It all looks good, they're making fries over
here Rocco so you might want to get cracking fries
over here. You need something on the side with those
burgers. All right, we're gonna be back, we're gonna see
what the judges have to say coming up a little
bit later on First snow. Oh, this looks good. Your
local news and weather. [MUSIC] Hey! Hey, welcome back to
Today on this Thursday. We are on the plaza, and
And it is a cook off! We've got some new
chefs and some experienced chefs and we're going to find
the best burger. I'm joined by three incredible judges Gail
Simmons, Marcus Samuelson and Curtis Stone. OK, Gail, what I
find interesting about what they're all doing over here is
there's no beef involved in the burgers. Well I think
in this day and age you have to really change
up a little bit. You've gotta do something different. Oh
my god, look at this is called, wait, you know
what this is? This is called [LAUGH] [INAUDIBLE] Official bribery.
Marcus, cheers. Marcus, tell me what you think. If people
at home are trying to do a new spin on
a burger, what do you think they should do? You
can tell her what the chef has done, you know,
they Actually didn't go for B, which is the most
common. Yeah. They have, I think they're using lamb and
pork which is really smart because it gets really, the
fat content is a little bit better in both of
those meals. And when you want a burger you think
about something juicy so I think they covered that. I
got you Marcus. Curtis what fo you think? Are you
ready to. What I think was an interesting comment before,
it's all about the beef to bun ratio. Now that
sounds like it's got a different connotation to it but
it's very important. I think texture's really important so to
get that crispiness ether from the lettuce or the crispy
bacon So you've got the softness of the bottom of
the [INAUDIBLE] What do you think of the bribe you're
drinking. Good, more bribes. Is it working? The bribes are
working. Hey chefs, you've got ten minutes. Guys, ten minutes,
ten minutes then they're going to be ready to taste.
So, let the cooking continue. We're just using our burner,
I just want to have the judges to know I
am sharing my burner. Alright, he's sharing his burner. Wow,
very nice. Alright, let's, we're going to go inside, ten
minutes until we find out the best burger, let's go
inside to Natalie. [MUSIC] [LAUGH] All right, we're back, and
we've been waiting to find out who can make the
biggest burger in Today's spring kitchen. You guys each had
45 minutes to come up with the best burger. The
judges are already pigging out. I mean tasting the burgers,
and before we hear what they judges have to say-
Who told you that the clock was up yet?! Who
said you could start eating? Lets meet our first group
of people. That's right first group named Best New Chef's
for 2008 by Food and Wine Magazine again wants to
remind you is Michael Psilakis chef and Owner of Anthos.
Ethan Stole, chef and owner of Union in Seattle and
Sue [UNKNOWN] chef at Gottros in New Orleans. Gottros. yes.
Our next group. Veteran chefs and alumni we like to
call them. Rocco Disperido, celebrity chef. You always get the
big woo. [LAUGH] Ania Loche chef and owner of Bar
Q here in New York, and Gavin Casen, executive chef
at Cafe Bulu. And we've got our judges down at
the other end. Gail Marcus and Kurtis. All right, but
first let's start with you guys, okay. Let's review shall
we. Okay, Michael, tell me about the burger, how you
made it, what was so great about it. It looks
beautiful, look at it. We made a lamb and a
pork burger. 70% lamb and 30% pork. Ethan made some
wonderful french fries. We also helped Sue lock down some
azole and some Some tomato jam on top. And we
finished it with a big old fried duck egg. A
fried duck egg? Don't forget the beer. And look at
this, this is part of the bribe, part of the
bribe. Okay, it looks delicious. Okay, and then over here.
Rocco, tell us about your team's burger. It looks fantastic.
Well, it was a team effort. This is a hand
on your heart, lick your lips burger. It's really good.
Ooh, hand on the heart, lick your lips, I like
that. I pledge allegiance to this burger. It's an old-fashion
sesame bun. It's a little mayonnaise, it's pork walnut wrapped
in bacon with chow-chow and pickled beats. That is unique.
Wow, that looks great. They all look great. [CROSSTALK]. What
do you guys think? They both look amazing. How do
you feel? Do you feel confident? Confident? They feel very.
You don't seem that confident. Looks good, looks good. They're
not even breaking a sweat over here. We're definitely confident.
We did the chocolate drink with coffee before. Right moves.
Right here. And now we're here, I mean. And you
all finished early. Because we know the judges have already
started to dig in here. We're coming down to the
judges. Okay, let's talk about this, guys. What do you
think so far? Which one are you eating right now?
This is the Alumni burger. This is the Alumni burger.
We've already been through the best, the new chef burger.
We've got a very big breakfast. So what do you
think about the Alumni burger? How does it taste? We
love it. It's pretty delicious. We love it. You love
it? What makes it unique? Well, I think the presentation.
The little bit of ketchup on the side, the bacon
around it, and also the beets which is a cool
move to add into the mix. I like it. It's
a little sweet and sour. Putting wall mounts into the
actual pork and I thought these people are mad. But
it was brilliant. It gives it a really nice crispiness.
Alright, so did you learn something from what they are
done. Absolutely. Where's the other burger, have you tried the
other burger yet? Yeah. We did. You're done with it?
Tell me about the other burger. How did that one
taste? The other burger had spices, great flavors, had a
little bit of parsley, taste a lot of the lamb
The fries were fantastic. The aioli was delicious Yeah, and
I'm not- It was really juicy. That's what I loved
about it, it was really moist and delicious. Had to
kind of slurp it down. Best [UNKNOWN] in our life.
Chef, if you were to sum that presentation. They used
lamb and I think Michael, having that Greek influence, he
also did a lot of lamb. The lamb was a
good inclusion. Okay, so presentation Presentation went to the New
Guys for me. The New Guys for you great. They
had it on the ball. They had the fries that
looked right. And overall taste, flavor. Who takes the prize
here? Drumroll! Okay you guys ready to pick your winner?
Audience are you ready for the winner? Okay! Alright, let's
hear it. Who has the best burger on the Plaza
today? I got to say Old School. Old school. Old
school! [CHEERING} What? Why did you tip it that way?
What was it? You're all winners. It was the juiciness
of the pork. All right, come here winners. Come here
Old School. Here are the Old School's trophies. The good
old trophies, I'm handing them off. Here you go, here's
one more. There you go, congratulations. One for you, congratulations.
Well, you know you were all winners, that was delicious.
How do you feel, Rocco? You know, I feel like
we're all winners. When I said that I didn't Didn't
mean it as a cliche. We are winners. We're [INAUDIBLE]
best new chefs, right? All right, congrats really to everybody.
You all did great today. Thank you so much. Wonderful,
all right, and by the way, we're gonna be back
in a moment. But first this is Today on NBC.
[INAUDIBLE] Yeah, good job. Nice job. [MUSIC] All winners, cuz
they're all winners. Yeah, the best new chef, the alumni
chef- And the judges who are top chefs. Thank you
for your help today. Yes, thank you. It was a
lot of fun, we enjoyed it. We got a lot
coming up tomorrow too, right? Tomorrow- Something's That you should
know about, including why not to store your shoes in
your bedroom closet, among some other things. Also, it is
Friday, ambush makeover, come to the Plaza, get redone. A
whole new spring for you. We'll see you guys tomorrow.
We'll see you tomorrow, bye. Bye.