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Michael Anthony

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Chefs Try to Take It to the Next Level in This Week’s Issue

Five established chefs take center stage in this week’s issue – or six, if you count Kurt Gutenbrunner, who, per In Season, has a way with white asparagus. The others? Michael Anthony, the Blue Hill Haute Barnyard prodigy who stepped into Tom Colicchio’s shoes at Gramercy Tavern; Christopher Lee, a major rising talent who filled big shoes at Gilt; Kerry Simon, a Las Vegas–based Vongerichten lieutenant who is now doing the food for a giant karaoke bar; and finally Marco Canora and Asian dessert master Pichet Ong, whose long-awaited debuts, Insieme and P*Ong, respectively, open this week. All this star power, along with two short lists that couldn’t be more different, awaits in this week’s magazine.

Give a Fast-Food Receipt, Get a MetroCard

The city, seeking to find out just how badly New Yorkers eat prior to implementing its new calorie-info law, is trading MetroCards for meal receipts. [Nation's Restaurant News] Akthar Nawab of E.U., Michael Anthony of Gramercy Tavern, and Chris Lee of Gilt all talk about the challenges of taking over an established restaurant (getting reviewed too soon, finding the fuse box, etc.). [NYP] The Spotted Pig’s April Bloomfield is being named Food & Wine’s Best New Chef. [NYP]

Fork-Crushed Potatoes: More Than Meets the Utensil

If there’s one rule about the weekly In Season recipe in the magazine’s Strategist section that we try to adhere to, it’s to keep things simple. This is due not only to limited space considerations, but also to the fact that we are of the let-the-ingredient-speak-for-itself school of cooking. Put another way, we’re lazy and hate cleaning up after ourselves. Still, this week’s recipe for fork-crushed Purple Majesty potatoes, courtesy of Gramercy Tavern’s Michael Anthony, was so exceptionally simple (yet undeniably delicious), it had people around the office talking. “This really couldn’t be much easier, could it?” said one admitted foodie, with a haughty note of reproof in her voice. Another cranky copy editor was more direct: “Even a small and not very gifted child can crush potatoes with a fork,” he said.

Platt Seduced By High Society; The Robs Wait Patiently in Line

In this week’s issue of the magazine, things are a little topsy-turvy. Back from London after sampling (and writing about) that city's burgeoning restaurant scene, Adam Platt eats at a place that hasn’t technically opened, and Rob and Robin provide some choices for killing time at one that reopens this week. And if the winter weather is keeping you home, the Underground Gourmet provides a recipe for little purple potatoes, cooked simply up and smashed with a fork, just the way they do it at Gramercy Tavern.

The Great Chef Crisis

Recently, apropos nothing much, a prominent young chef we were chatting with launched into a tirade about the restaurant world’s “labor problem.” “None of us can get enough good cooks!” he exclaimed, by way of explanation. Between 2000 and 2006, only a handful of high-end restaurants — Lespinasse, Meigas, Quilty’s — have closed, and there has been an avalanche of major openings: Robuchon, Ramsay, Per Se, Masa, Craft, Del Posto, Morimoto, A Voce, the Modern, Lever House, Buddakan, Cafe Gray, Alto — the list goes on and on. “And it’s not just the massive boom of restaurants,” Adam Platt tells us. “They also have to be either bigger, or chefs have to open multiple places, so that they can enjoy the economies of scale they need to compete.”

Good Eats for Fashion Plates

With Fashion Week almost here, some of you may have switched gears, thinking less about “Where can I find the perfect piece of foie gras?” and more about “How can I fit into a size 0 by Saturday?” We can’t presume to help you with that one, but we can recommend three guilt-free, non-Atkins options for eating well as the models parade into town.

Everything Topsy-Turvy at Gramercy Tavern

There are currently 3,458 menus in our vast database. If you only have the time to enjoy reading one today, may we recommend the new menu that’s just been instituted at Gramercy Tavern. Executive chef Michael Anthony has been running the kitchen since the fall, but only now is his vision for the restaurant taking hold. Anthony, whose back-to-the-earth style was last glimpsed at Blue Hill at Stone Barns, leans on Vongerichten-like combinations of juices and herbs; butter and animal fat are used sparingly. “I want people to walk out of the restaurant not feeling heavy and full, but vibrant and restored,” the chef tells us. Which is not to say he’s completely shunning rich, meaty concoctions: There’s a boned-out suckling-pig porchetta, stuffed with house-made sausage and Swiss chard, that he’s cooking in the Tavern’s wood-burning oven. So what should you order when you come to Gramercy now? “It’s my dream to have a four-top sit down and order two seasonal tasting menus and two vegetable tasting menus,” Anthony says. Any volunteers? A to Z List: Online Menus