The Top 10 Chefs in The United States
The art of cooking has been evolving for the past 2 million years! Even today, the best chefs constantly endeavor to delve deeper into the world of gastronomic delights and manage come up with scrumptious culinary masterpieces. Being a top chef requires one to have the imagination of a poet, the precision of a neurosurgeon and the dedication of a professional bodybuilder – not to forget an intense, undying passion for food. Below is a list of the top 10 chefs in the United States. These people are more than just brilliant cooks – they are phenomenal business-persons and have become social and cultural icons.
10. Alton Brown
Alton Brown is one of the most eminent chefs in the US. He has created several TV shows such as ‘Good Eats’, ‘Feasting on Asphalt’ and ‘Feasting on waves’. He is also the host of ‘Iron Chef America’ and has written several books on cookery. Alton received of the James Beard Award in 2011. He is a graduate of the New England Culinary Institute and has a great understanding of the scientific aspect of cooking.
9. Anthony Bourdain
Anthony Bourdain rose to fame after his book ‘Kitchen Confidential’ became a huge success. Today, he is well renowned for hosting several TV shows such as ‘The layover’ and ‘No Reservations’. He has also authored several other bestselling books and many of his articles have appeared in some of the leading newspapers and magazines in the world. Anthony was born in New York and graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in 1978. His grandparents are French and he says that he first fell in love with food when he ate an oyster on a fisherman’s boat in France. He is well known for his witty, humorous personality which has landed him in several controversies.
8. Alfred Portale
Alfred is one of the finest chefs in the US and is hugely famous for being the pioneer of the New American Cuisine movement. He graduated from the Culinary Institute of American in 1981 and became the chef of The Gotham Bar and Grill four years after that. He has mentored several top class chefs such as Tom Valenti and Christopher Lee.
7. Paula Deen
Paula Deen is a household name in the US. Apart from being a restaurateur and a cook show host; she is the author of fourteen cookbooks. In 2007, she won an Emmy Award for her outstanding hosting skills in the show – Paula’s Home Cooking. However, things were not always this great for Paula. She lost both her parents before she was 23; her marriage failed and she ended up as a single mother with two sons – Jamie and Bobby. Money was hard to come by and Paula tried her hand at several jobs before starting her own catering service. She cooked at home and her sons helped her to deliver meals to her customers. Today, the business has grown to humongous proportions and Paula has become one of the most celebrated chefs in the US. Her once miniscule catering service has taken the form of the renowned ‘The Lady and Sons’ restaurant which is located in Savannah. Paula learnt to cook from her grandmother and her cooking style is predominantly southern Asian.
6. Alice Waters
Alice Waters is a staunch advocate of organic produce. She played an integral part in developing Michelle Obama’s organic garden in the White House. As a student of French Culture, Alice travelled to France and was fascinated by the fresh produce that she saw at the local markets. Her restaurant ‘Chez Panisse’ is located in Berkeley, California and has been voted as the best restaurant in the country on several occasions. In the year 1992, Alice Waters became the first woman to be named as the Best Chef in America. Her contribution to the world of cooking is priceless and she has won countless awards and accolades.
5. Thomas ‘Tom’ Colicchio
Tom is the head judge of the reality television series ‘Top Chef’. He is the co-founder of Gramercy Tavern which has been awarded 3 stars out of 4 by The New York Times. He has 5 James beard Foundation awards to his credit and has also been featured on the TV franchise ‘Great Chefs’. He is the owner of several restaurants in the US; some of them include Craft (New York and LA), Craftbar (New York City and LA) and Craft Steak (Las Vegas).
4. Gary Danko
Gary Danko owns a Michelin starred restaurant by the same name in San Francisco, California. His cooking style includes a blend of American and Mediterranean elements. Danko started his career as a waiter and gradually worked up his way to becoming the executive chef at the Ritz Carlton in San Francisco. Gary has been named as the Best Chef in California by the James Beard Foundation and his restaurant was the first to achieve a five star rating in the Mobil Travel Guide.
3. Mario Batali
Mario Batali started his career as a dishwasher and today he is the co-owner of top class restaurants located all over the world. His restaurant ‘Babbo’ has been awarded a Michelin star and in 2008, he was named as ‘Best Restaurateur’ by the James Beard Foundation. He specializes in Italian and cuisine and is undoubtedly one of the most talented chefs in the US. He has appeared on countless TV shows and the list of his achievements can run into several pages.
2. Eric Ripert
Ripert’s restaurant ‘Le Bernardin’ is one the best not just in the country, but in the whole world. It has been awarded the maximum of 3 stars by the Michelin guide and 4/4 stars by The New York times. Ripert’s cooking style is French and his unmatched mastery over seafood has earned him international acclaim. He has appeared on several TV shows such as ‘Anthony Bourdain: No reservations’, ‘Treme’ and ‘Top Chef’
1. Thomas Keller
The name Thomas Keller has become synonymous with culinary excellence. Time Magazine named him the best chef in America in 2001 and he has been inducted into the Culinary Hall of fame. His restaurant Per Se (New York) has been awarded the 3 maximum of three stars by the Michelin Guide. Another one of his restaurants, ‘The French Laundry’ too has earned 3 Michelin stars and it has also been included in the list of the best restaurants in the world – not once but multiple times. Thus, Thomas Keller is the only American to hold 3 Michelin stars for 2 restaurants simultaneously.
Thomas began as a dish washer at the Palm Beach Yacht Club in Miami and was later promoted to a cook. He realized that he loved cooking while trying to make a hollandaise sauce. He was discovered and mentored by one of the greatest chefs in history – Roland Henin. Keller’s cookbooks have won several prestigious awards and he was consulted during the making of the animated hit film – Ratatouille.
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