Recently we hosted a food-centric tweet-up, inviting some of the biggest names in the culinary industry to share their expertise, answering questions about food and, of course, travel. On our panel?
Host: Adam Sachs (@AdamSachs):
Mario Batali (@MarioBatali):
Andrew Carmellini (@AndreCarmellini):
Gabriele Corcos (@TheTuscanGun):
Mitchel Davis (@KitchenSense):
Kat Kinsman (@KittenWithAWhip):
Debi Mazar (@DebiMazar):
Nilou Motamed (@NilouMotamed):
Daniel Patterson (@DCPatterson):
Marcus Samuellson (@MarcusCooks):
Throughout the hour-long conversation, the panel shared a lot of great information. Here are some highlights:
Talk about a food experience you had while traveling that really inspired you.
Adam Sachs: Foraging for wild wasabi in Japan was up there with top food nerd fantasies.
Mario Batali: I’m a huge fan of the Borough Market in London. It’s like a movie set from the Dickens era, with spectacular food.
Mitchell Davis: I recently made my way to Willows Inn for a dinner of fresh, foraged, and local food in a gorgeous setting.
Marcus Samuellson: Tasting fugu (pufferfish) for the first time in Tokyo. Blew my mind.
What’s your fail-safe in-flight snack?
Adam Sachs: Bourbon. Salty snacks. Remembering to bring something from a place I just visited on a return flight makes the end of a trip less sad.
Daniel Patterson: I don’t eat on airplanes. I like to arrive at a destination hungry and thirsty, ready to eat and drink!
Debi Mazar: Almonds, water, mortadella sandwich that I bring, hot lemon water, and clementines.
Gabriele Corcos: Mortadella sandwich made with my own bread.
What food sites or apps do you use when planning a trip?
Kat Kinsman: Twitter has never failed me for food recs. People love showing off the best of their city. It’s led me high and low but never astray.
Mitchell Davis: I like the electronic Lonely Planet guides and the Urban Spoon app.
Marcus Samuellson: I just ask my friends and rely on locals to point me in the right direction.
Debi Mazar: I don’t use apps when planning my trips, or to find somewhere to eat. I go by word of mouth, or just spontaneously stumble on a cool place to dine.
Gabriele Corcos: I just follow my nose and my stomach! No apps.
What’s your favorite non-tourist restaurant, food stand, or market where you can eat like a local?
Adam Sachs: I’m with David Chang in my non-ironic attachment to 24-hour Tokyo convenience stores. Long live Lawson’s! Fealty to Family Mart!
Mario Batali: Sun Huat was the highlight of my last trip there to Singapore.
Mitchell Davis: Just had an amazing lunch at Pierino Penati in Vigano, Lombardy. I don’t think any non-Italian has ever been there.
Kat Kinsman: I make a beeline for K&W Cafeteria. Clientele hovers around 75, and you can eat greens, chicken livers, and tomato aspic for pennies.
Nilou Motamed: Boqueria Market in Barcelona is always a mind-blower. Hard to believe such simple ingredients and preparation can rock so hard.
Name a dish you cooked or created that was inspired by your travels.
Andrew Carmellini: My recipe for Anthony’s slaw that has pickled jalapenos was named after Tony Uglesich from New Orleans.
Mitchell Davis: After spending time in Copenhagen, I stopped making croutons and started making rye bread “dirt” to sprinkle on salads and other dishes.
Debi Mazar: Cuban beef stew, based on a meal I had in a Cuban home. It’s now Tuscan Stew!
Kat Kinsman: A trip to South Carolina kicks off a shrimp and grits obsession. My grits are solid, but it’s never gonna be the same without local shellfish.
Gabriele Corcos: Anything octopus, after visiting Sicily.
What’s the best city for late-night dining? Where do you go and what do you order?
Andrew Carmellini: It’s touristy, but a Tete de Veau in Paris at au Pied de Cochon at midnight is pretty tasty.
Mario Batali: Hong Kong: I love Temple Street at 2 a.m.
Debi Mazar: NYC, baby! I love The Dutch for oysters and beer.
Kat Kinsman: Vegas all the way. Finish shenanigans and crash-land at the Peppermill’s Fireside Lounge with a head-sized Scorpion Bowl.
What’s the culinary trend everyone will be talking about next year?
Adam Sachs: Return to fine dining. Not necessarily white tablecloths. But a little more elegance, little less industrial lighting.
Mario Batali: The delicious food of Indonesia and the city of Jakarta!
Mitchell Davis: Fine dining has gone from plush dining rooms to kitchen counters. Next? Eating at windows standing on the street.
Marcus Samuellson: More veggies, less animal protein.
When traveling, do you go to Michelin stars all the way or a mix of high and low?
Adam Sachs: Michelin interest is purely continent or country dependent; France often. The rest of Europe: sometimes. The rest of the world: never.
Andrew Carmellini: Low to high. Got to mix it up. Got to find the soul.
Marcus Samuellson: Got to mix it up. I prefer hole-in-the-wall spots.
Debi Mazar: I’ve never looked up Michelin anything. Sorry, but cookie cutter/fancy…yawn.
What part of the world doesn’t get enough respect as a dining destination?
Adam Sachs: Peru. It’s never gonna be the next big thing we always want it to be, but that shouldn’t stop you from going there. Amazing and varied.
Marcus Samuellson: Africa…kitfo (Ethiopian dish consisting of minced beef marinated in a chili-based spice blend), ayib (Ethiopian cheese much like ricotta), and injera (Ethiopian flat bread).
Kat Kisman: I am rarely happier than when I’m eating North & South Carolina food with ingredients from there. It’s serious food.
If you could be eating anything, anywhere right now, what and where would it be?
Adam Sachs: Lunch at Michel Bras, floating over purply green cow-dotted hills of Auvergne.
Andrew Carmellini: Cooking something, whatever, on a wood grill outside Nice, drinking Rose.
Mitchell Davis: Green olive bread sticks from Princi bakery in Milan.