Posted By - Kate Spencer On December 23, 2015

The New York Project: Happy Holidays!

Illustration: Gretchen Roehrs

The New York Project:  Why We Love...

Heather Bertinetti

Described by Eater as a “pastry phenom”, Heather Bertinetti-Rozzi is a super talented pastry chef who has worked at some of New York City’s best restaurants: Gramercy Tavern, Per se, Alto, Convivio, Marea, Osteria Morin and The Lion and Crown. 

Bertinetti kicked off her passion for pastry with her first Easy Bake Oven at age five, making cookies for her family. By the age of 15, she was working at a small French pastry shop in New Jersey. She graduated from the Culinary Institute of America with a Baking & Pastry Arts degree.

Bertinetti’s passion is to create elegant but straightforward dishes and handles dessert like a pro as the corporate Pastry Chef for the Major Food Group restaurants run by Rich Torrisi, Mario Carbone and Jeff Zalaznick. 

April Bloomfield

April Bloomfield is a native of Birmingham, England, and launched her culinary career under the guidance of Ruth Rogers and Rose Gray at The River Café where she learned to appreciate the beauty and simplicity of food.

Before moving to New York, April spent the summer of 2003 in Berkeley, California at Alice Waters’ legendary Chez Panisse. In February 2004, April and restaurateur Ken Friedman opened New York City’s first gastropub, The Spotted Pig, which has earned one star from the Michelin Guide for six consecutive years since 2010. The Breslin Bar & Dining Room has also earned a star. Bloomfield is a Food & Wine “Best New Chef” and has gone on to open the John Dory Oyster Bar, Salvation Taco and Tosca in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood. 

April’s first cookbook, "A Girl and Her Pig", was published in April 2012 and her fabulous follow up, "A Girl and Her Greens", was released in April 2015.

Anne Burrell

Anne Burrell has the energetic personality to match her spiky blond hair and the career chops to be a respected and passionate teacher. She has worked at some of the top restaurants in New York including as a sous chef with Lidia Bastianich and alongside Mario Batali as his sous chef on Food Network’s Iron Chef America. 

Anne Burrell’s first cookbook was published in 2011 and was aptly named Cook Like a Rock Star. She stars in several Food Network shows including Secrets of a Restaurant Chef, Chef Wanted, Worst Cooks in America and Next Iron Chef: Super Chefs.

Danielle Chang

Danielle Chang created LUCKYRICE as a platform for her life-long passion for Asian Culture. She began her career at The New York Times and later founded and published Simplycity Magazine. She has a Masters from Columbia and was a professor of Contemporary Art at Columbia. She was a Managing Director of Assouline and was the CEO of Vivienne Tam. Moving from the visual arts to the culinary arts was seamless as she seeks to share stories about our fascination with Asian culture.

Launched in 2010, LUCKYRICE hosts large-scale feasts and festive dinners to share stories about Asian culture through the lens of food and wine: night markets, ramen slurpfests and cocktail feasts coast-to-coast.

The annual Chinese New Year celebration will be extra festive in 2016 to ring in the Year of the Monkey and celebrate the launch of Danielle Chang’s debut cookbook, "Lucky Rice". Mark your Calendar: Tuesday, February 9, 2016 at the Golden Unicorn in the heart of New York’s Chinatown.

Amanda Cohen

Amanda Cohen’s vegetable heaven Dirt Candy moved in 2015 to a space nearly 5 times larger (“Big Candy" as she called it) at 86 Allen Street in New York City. With a menu that continues to deliver and a new no tipping policy that some applauded (yah!) and some did not, Amanda Cohen pushes the envelope and offers inspiration through her trail-blazing vegetarian recipes that are adored by omnivores, vegetarians and vegans alike.

Case in point to her no-rules philosophy, she published her amazing recipes “Dirty Candy: A Cookbook: Flavor-Forward Food from the Upstart New York City Vegetarian Restaurant” in 2012 not as a standard cookbook but as a graphic novel.

The Toronto native is planning on offering lunch service at Dirt Candy in the new year. You can see her in action at the Chefs’ Holidays Weekend in Yosemite at The Ahwahnee, January 20-21 with Elizabeth Falkner and Anita Lo.

Elizabeth Falkner

As Elizabeth Falkner says on her website, “I love to cook and I cook to love.” She is a culinary leader, especially for women as she put her cool stamp on the Women’s Chefs & Restaurateurs Association as its President from 2014 to 2015. She is a multiple award-winning chef, a cookbook author and James Beard nominee who has made frequent television appearances from Iron Chef America to Top Chef to Top Chef Masters to The Next Iron Chef: Super Chefs. 

For more than 20 years, Falkner had a cult following for her two San Francisco Bay Area restaurants: Citizen Cake and Orson. After moving to New York and opening two restaurants, Elizabeth Falkner is again setting her own course by working on her first memoir and doing motivational speaking themed from her web projects “Warrior Wellness” and “Fit to Cook.” She’s a Pastry Chef who has also won First Prize in the World Pizza Competition in Naples, Italy in 2012.

She is pushing the connection between health, fitness and the culinary world and you can see her in action at the Chefs’ Holidays Weekend in Yosemite at The Ahwahnee, January 20-21 with Amanda Cohen and Anita Lo.

Anita Lo 

Anita Lo is the owner and Executive Chef of Annisa and author of “Cooking Without Borders”, a cookbook she wrote with COOKGIRL’s favorite: Charlotte Druckman. She is one of the most respected chefs in America and as a first generation Chinese-America who grew up in Birmingham, Michigan, she brings her multi-cultural upbringing into the kitchen. Anita graduated first in her class with honors from The Ecole Ritz-Escoffier in Paris. She has worked in amazing kitchens from Bouley, Chanterelle and Mirezi.

In 2000, she opened Annisa and was named to Food & Wine’s "Best New Chefs" in 2001. In 2010, Annisa was completely renovated and reopened with Lo’s contemporary American cuisine with classic French technique inspired by her travels around the globe. As Pete Wells wrote in the New York Times when he gave her three stars in February 2014, “Free-form creativity like Ms. Lo’s is rare.”

Annisa, which means “women” in Arabic, primarily offers selections produced by female vintners/vineyard owners.

Anita will join Elizabeth Falkner and Amanda Cohen at the Chefs' Holiday Weekend in Yosemite January 20-21, 2016.

Koren Grieveson

Koren Grieveson left Chicago’s Avec where she was one of Food & Wine's "Best New Chefs" in 2008 and won the James Beard Award for Best Chef America: Great Lakes in 2010. We all still swoon over her bacon-wrapped Medjool dates. She moved to New York, working briefly as chef de cuisine at Claudette, where the menu was Provencal meets North Africa.

As of June 2015 Grieveson brought her culinary prowess to Resto, a contemporary Belgian-inspired bistro located in Murray Hill. Using her influence from Mediterranean and African-inspired ingredients and spices she put her own personal stamp on the menu. The restaurant is open daily for lunch, dinner, as well as weekend brunch. With a nod to her work at Claudette, her Moules & Frites dish has harissa and she has added more vegetables, drawing on more North African influences.

Koren is the daughter of a chicken farmer in Luanda, Angola, and moved with her family as her father advanced in the industry from Iran, to England, to Brazil before settling in Connecticut in 1981. Koren joined the US Army in 1987, where she remained in service for eight years and began cooking. After leaving the Army, Koren transitioned to catering, providing food for the Lollapalooza festivals in New York City and famous bands, including the Rolling Stones and the Eagles. Having found her passion in the kitchen, Koren then went on to the Culinary Institute of America. 

Follow her on Twitter and you will always be hungry with her amazing food shots!

Cook On!

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