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Mangoes

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Great American Chef Sick; New Yorkers Enjoy Too Much Mercury

Grant Achatz of Chicago’s Alinea, arguably the most acclaimed of all American chefs, has an advanced form of cancer but vows to beat it. [Chicago Sun-Times] A quarter of New Yorkers have elevated mercury levels in their bloodstreams. Especially those who eat fish. [NYP] It’s tough for Top Chef rivals Howie and Joey. When your life has turned into a paella whipped up by Philip K. Dick and Andrew Sullivan, it's time to move to the suburbs with a pair of chocolate Labs. [Amuse Biatch] Related: ‘Top Chef’’s Howie Tastes the Big Time, Briefly, at Gotham Bar and Grill ‘Top Chef’ Biases Finally Out on the Table

Pearl’s Oyster Bar Sues Ed’s Lobster Bar; Ducasse Taking Over Brasserie LCB

The owner of Pearl Oyster Bar sues the owner of Ed’s Lobster Bar for intellectual-property theft, accusing her former sous-chef of having stolen everything from the paint job to the Caesar salad dressing. [NYT] Alain Ducasse has taken over Brasserie LCB and is looking to convert it into a bistro along the lines of Benoit, his casual place in Paris. [NYT] It might not be such a good idea to hire a Top Chef. [NYO]

Tabla’s Floyd Cardoz Corners the Market on Indian Mangoes

For years, Indian mangoes have enjoyed the reputation, among food writers and gourmands, as the world’s best. But since the things were never allowed into this country, those of us who rarely left home were forced to take it on faith. The government has now allowed the forbidden fruit at last, but you still can’t taste them – unless you go to Tabla, where chef Floyd Cardoz has more or less cornered the market on Indian mangoes.

Beard’s Finances Questioned; Restaurants Manipulate Zagat

The Beard Foundation, in the spotlight as Monday’s awards approach, is still on shaky ground financially, and questions still linger about the way it spends its money. [NYT] Restaurants are lobbying customers to vote for them in the Zagat survey, a trend nobody likes, but which few in the business can stop or resist. [NYP] The days of the fat chef seem to have been passed, leaving mostly whippet-slim cooks to inherit the world’s kitchens. [Waitrose via Serious Eats]