Chris Cosentino

Chris Cosentino wins Top Chef Masters

From Inside Scoop San Francisco:

Earlier this month, San Francisco’s own Chris Cosentino (Incanto, Boccalone) was declared “the best chef in history,” and if you were anywhere near the Twitter machine last night  (or you know,  a television), then you know that he followed it up with another cooking show win. Cosentino won the fourth season of Top Chef Masters, following in the footsteps of prior winners Rick Bayless, Marcus Samuellson and Floyd Cardoz.

Upon topping fellow finalist Kerry Heffernan, Cosentino uttered an instant classic of a slogan: “Guts prevail.” He explained that the way he won the show — using his signature offal cuts, on a national stage — was validation that America can and should be cooking with offal more often.

Cosentino’s win was also a victory for his charity of choice, the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research. He’s discussed his connection to Parkinson’s in the past, and now he’s contributed over $140,000 to the cause.

Here’s the winning moment:



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Youtube Is Making Us HUNGRY

In the next week Youtube will launch it’s new Channel of exclusive food shows entitled HUNGRY.  Here’s the official Youtube™ description:

Combining the audience and bandwidth of leading foodie site Urbanspoon with proven leaders in food programming with partners Notional and CAA, the Food channel is the perfect blend of loud characters and unique personalities with real, helpful and most importantly, highly entertaining tid bits on everything food!

HUNGRYMost of the stars are relative unknowns like sugar diva Laura Vitale host of Summer Desserts and Drink Inc. hosts Steve Livigni and Daniel Nelson.  But there are also some heavy hitters in the group including the king of all things offal Chris Cosentino (Next Iron Chef, Chef vs. City) and channel consultant Duff Goldman (Ace of Cakes, Sugar High).  The whole shebang is run by Bruce Seidel formerly of the Food Network.  Seidel was the brains behind the successful launch of the Cooking Channel.

According to Seidel, “In the evolution of the food arena, and as original content on digital platforms continues to flourish, HUNGRY marks a new vision and attitude about all things food. Whether you love to eat, cook or drink, our dynamic original series have something for everyone.”

Goldman, who both stars in one of the new series and serves as a talent and programming consultant for the channel, commented, “I am stoked for HUNGRY and this exciting new partnership with Electus. The future of food programming is moving online, and viewers are increasingly turning to the Internet for their entertainment and education.”

Seidel added, “Our mission is to create highly entertaining shows and galvanize the niches that are driving the Internet food conversation forward via the incredible power and social influence of YouTube™.”

Officially launching on Monday, July 2nd, Electus will announce The Hungry Channel’s full talent and programming slate in the coming weeks.  Viewers can subscribe to The Hungry Channel for trailers and show updates at: www.youtube.com/hungry.  Until then here’s a sample of what’s in store:

Top Chefs Talk Turkey

Gobble, gobble is just a few weeks away. Now is the time to finalize your plans for cooking your Thanksgiving dinner. Some of the country’s best chefs go together at the Aspen Food and Wine Festival and literally talked turkey. Check it out:

CHRIS COSENTINO

JOHN BESH

GAIL SIMMONS

Handicapping Next Iron Chef 4

NIC4 BannerWe’re just seven days away from the premiere of Next Iron Chef 4 and one thing is for sure, this cast is sick!  Easily the best line-up since the original NIC which included Traci de Jardins, John Besh, Gavin Kaysen, Aaron Sanchez, Chris Cosentino and eventual winner Michael Symon to name a few.

Dig this roster: Anne Burrell, Michael Chiarello, Elizabeth Faulkner, Alex Guarnaschelli, Chuck Hughes, Robert Irvine, Beau MacMillan, Spike Mendelsohn, Marcus Samuelsson and Geoffrey Zakarian.  That is some serious chef knowledge right there.  The international panel of judges is hefty as well featuring the original ‘Next Iron Chef’ Michael Symon, esteemed food journalist Simon Majumdar and UK Iron Chef Judy Joo.

Anne BurrellMy money is on Anne Burrell and here’s why:

  • Demographics.  All indications are that Cat Cora is giving up her spot in the pantheon and ideally the Network probably wants a woman to replace her.  Only a fool would think that those kinds of things do not play a part in who wins so-called reality TV contests.
  • There is currently no Iron Chef with a strong Italian cuisine background.
  • Those reasons are superfluous compared to the fact that Burrell is a ferocious competitor; ask Robert Irvine.
  • But to me this is the real kicker – Anne has competed in Kitchen Stadium some twenty times as Mario Batali’s sous chef.  There is no replacement for experience.

In the month leading up to the premiere of NIC 4 I have noticed a great deal of Anne Burrell in the news including her first cookbook (Cook Like A Rock Star available at amazon) and tons of TV appearances.  The media push included appearances on Access Hollywood and ABC’s The Chew where she announced that she was set to begin filming season nine of Secrets of a Restaurant Chef and season three of Worst Cook in America which will be co-hosted by Bobby Flay.  I’m not saying the Burrell buzz means she’ll win NIC 4 but it is worth noting.

I also wouldn’t count out Elizabeth Faulkner.  Like Forgione last year she comes in as a dark horse but she also used to be Cat’s pastry chef and has been in Kitchen Stadium a few times.  Faulkner also represents demographic gold.  NIC 4 is hosted by Alton Brown and premieres Sunday, October 30th at 9pm ET/PT.  Be sure to check out my exclusive interviews with contestant Alex Guarnaschelli HERE and judge Michael Symon HERE.

DSCO

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Stuart in 80 Words or Less

Stuart is a celebrity chef, food activist and award-winning food writer. He penned the cookbooks Third Coast Cuisine: Recipes of the Gulf of Mexico, No Sides Needed: 34 Recipes To Simplify Life and Amigeauxs - Mexican/Creole Fusion Cuisine. He hosts two Internet cooking shows "Everyday Gourmet" and "Little Grill Big Flavor." His recipes have been featured in Current, Lagniappe, Southern Tailgater, The Kitchen Hotline and on the Cooking Channel.

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Stuart’s Honors & Awards

2015 1st Place Luck of the Irish Cook-off
2015 4th Place Downtown Cajun Cook-off
2015 2nd Place Fins' Wings & Chili Cook-off
2014 2015 4th Place LA Gumbo Cook-off
2012 Taste Award nominee for best chef (web)
2012 Finalist in the Safeway Next Chef Contest
2011 Taste Award Nominee for Little Grill Big Flavor
2011, 12 Member: Council of Media Tastemakers
2011 Judge: 29th Chef's of the Coast Cook-off
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Wing Cook-off
2011 Cooking Channel Perfect 3 Recipe Finalist
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Gumbo Cook-off
2011 Culinary Hall of Fame Member
2010 Tasty Awards Judge
2010 Judge: Bayou La Batre Gumbo Cook-off
2010 Gourmand World Cookbook Award Nominee
2010 Chef2Chef Top 10 Best Food Blogs
2010 Denay's Top 10 Best Food Blogs
2009 2nd Place Bay Area Food Bank Chef Challenge
2008 Tava: Discovery Contest Runner-up

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