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John Besh

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Kokopelli Names a Chef

The Southwestern-inspired small plates restaurant, which is set to open soon, recruits a chef with varied experience.

By Collin Keefe

Kokopelli Names a Chef

The Southwestern-inspired small plates restaurant, which is set to open soon, recruits a chef with varied experience.

By Collin Keefe

‘Next Iron Chef’ Conspiracy; Keller Snubbed by Michelin

Judges Andrew Knowlton and Donatella Arpaia think John Besh obliterated Michael Symon in the Next Iron Chef finale and that he deserved the title; the latter even accused Ruhlman of casting his “swing” vote for Symon because the chef is his Cleveland comrade. [Ruhlman] Thomas Keller’s Bouchon has been snubbed by the new Las Vegas Michelin Guide with a whopping zero stars, while Robuchon scored three. [Bloomberg] Related: Michelin's Madness Drives Ed Levine (and Us) Up a Wall The owners of the twenty-year-old Italian joint restaurant Baraonda were told they lost their lease, so they took over a new space only to find out they could keep the old one. What to do? Plan a second restaurant. [NYP]

Who Will Be Cut Next on ‘The Next Iron Chef’?

Nothing can replace Top Chef in our reality-TV affections, but we have to say, The Next Iron Chef is pretty good. We only started watching this past week, being understandably resistant to another show built on the identical format of Top Chef. The premise Next Iron Chef is that, rather than just having the next Iron Chef selected by Food Network suits, the nation's most celebrated chefs should compete, with the winner given the dubious honor of cooking in weekly battles in Kitchen Stadium. (You would think chefs would be fighting to avoid such a fate, but such is the pull of fame.)

Free Food at 5 Ninth!

Drop what you're doing, run to the phone, and reserve a spot at the Southern Foodways Alliance's "The New Orleans Table: Return and Recollect" Friday-night event at 5 Ninth. A New Orleans culinary supergroup will bless the party with some of their signature dishes, including Anthony Uglesich's famous BBQ oysters and Leah Chase's gumbo z'herbs (green gumbo). The cocktails will include Colonial-era Sazeracs and Ramos gin fizzes made just the way Huey Long specified (a tape loop will show rediscovered footage of "The Kingfish" giving a mixology lesson). Gumbo man Lionel Key Jr. will pound sassafras leaves in an immense mortar and pestle made from a 150-pound cyprus tree, and N.O. chef John Besh will collaborate with our own Zak Pelaccio on a New Orleans–tribute menu. Call 212-679-660, extension 201, for reservations. And, oh, did we mention that it's free? (Other than in the headline?)