Kevin Nashan Talks Battling New York Chef Harold Moore on Knife Fight

Categories: Media

Kevin Nashan at Sidney Street Cafe. | Caroline Yoo

Kevin Nashan is one of the most renowned chefs in town -- James Beard Award nominee, executive chef at Sidney Street Cafe and the Peacemaker -- but can he stand up to a Knife Fight? It's a cooking competition series on the Esquire Network which challenges two chefs against each other to create multiple dishes in just an hour with surprise ingredients.

It's hosted by Top Chef winner Ilan Hall after hours in his Los Angeles restaurant the Gorbals. Earlier this year, Nashan took on New York City chef Harold Moore. The episode airs Tuesday, September 2, so we talked to Nashan about working under pressure, the inevitable knife mishap and getting out of your comfort zone.

See also: Kevin Nashan Brings the Coast to Peacemaker Lobster & Crab Co.

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Fozzie's Named One of the Best Sandwich Shops in America

Categories: Media

The "Big Bend Mafia" at Fozzie's. | Jennifer Silverberg

We've known that Fozzie's Sandwich Emprorium (1170 South Big Bend Boulevard, Richmond Heights; 314-932-5414) was outstanding for years, but others are taking notice. Food & Wine has named it one of the twenty best sandwich shops in the country this week.

See also: #54: The Gracey at Fozzie's Sandwich Emporium

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Watch St. Louis Chefs Compete on the Next Great Baker Finale Tonight

Categories: Media

Wedding Wonderland Cakeshop & Hendel's Restaurant chefs Al Watson and Lia Weber. | TLC

Two St. Louis pastry chefs will be competing on the season four finale of TLC's Next Great Baker tonight. Al Watson and Lia Weber work at the Wedding Wonderland Cakeshop (437 Dunn Road, Florissant; 314-837-5015) and Hendel's Market Cafe (599 Saint Denis Street, Florissant; 314-837-2304), respectively. They're battling three other teams for the chance at $100,000 and the opportunity to bake at Buddy Valastro's new Las Vegas bakery.

See also: Black Bear Bakery's Raspberry Oat Bar, A Simple Sweet Treat Done Right

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Panera's Ad Agency Quits Calling Working with Chain "Crazy," Panera CMO Rebuts

Categories: Media

Just some chickens taking the hard road for Panera. | YouTube

St. Louis-founded and -based Panera Bread Company and its ad agency Cramer-Krasselt broke up in a very public way earlier this week. It wasn't a mutual split, though -- an internal memo from Cramer-Krasselt leaked yesterday morning doesn't paint a pretty picture of working with our hometown bakery-turned-national-chain.

See also: The Crossing Competes in James Beard Foundation Taste America Challenge

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Hugh Jackman Fed the Beast at Pappy's

Categories: Media

Pulled pork and brisket at Pappy's. | Liz Miller

Hugh Jackman was in St. Louis Monday for WWE Raw (because he's Wolverine?) and stopped for a quintessential St. Louis meal: barbecue. The X-Men star got ribs at Pappy's Smokehouse (3106 Olive Street; 314-535-4340). Good choice.

See also: Jimmy Fallon Visits Crown Candy Kitchen

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Mob City Cast Ate at Charlie Gitto's on the Hill

Jon Bernthal of The Walking Dead at Wizard World 2014. | Jon Gitchoff

The nerds were out in full force earlier this month for Wizard World 2014. It's basically the Comic Con of St. Louis. Joss Whedon favorite Nathan Fillion helped a couple get engaged; even William Shatner was here.

See also: The Three Best Things About Wizard World 2014

Several celebs have been in St. Louis recently (believe it or not, it actually happens), and they've taken in our growing food scene. Jimmy Fallon went to Crown Candy Kitchen. Judah Friedlander ordered -- and hated -- Imo's. Alton Brown fell in love with Pi Pizzeria.

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Cassy Vires, Ben Poremba Up for Food & Wine's Best New Chef: Midwest

Categories: Media

Ben Poremba, center, at Olio. | Jennifer Silverberg

Every year, Food & Wine names ten chefs from across the country as the best up-and-comers in the culinary world. There are ten nominees from the Midwest region, and two of them are from right here in St. Louis.

See also: Gerard Craft, Kevin Nashan James Beard Award Foundation Finalists

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St. Louis Named 2nd Most Romantic City For Valentine's Day

Categories: Media

       The cozy bar at Bar Les Freres. | Jennifer Silverberg

With Valentine's Day less than two weeks away, OpenTable named St. Louis the second most romantic city in America, after...San Antonio? The rankings were calculated using three variables: " the percentage of restaurants rated 'romantic' according to OpenTable diner reviews; the percentage of tables seated for two; and the percentage of people who dined out for Valentine's Day."

The weird part, though, is users of the restaurant reservation site named the Melting Pot (6683 Delmar Boulevard, University City; 314-725-4141) and Al's Steakhouse (1200 North First Street; 314-421-6399) the most romantic restaurants in town. We beg to differ. Here are some of our favorite local spots when we're in the mood for love.

See also: Baileys' Chocolate Bar Named in Top 20 Dessert Spots in America

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Curtis Sittenfeld Will Read Your Unpublished Manuscript If You Help Local Harvest

Curtis Sittenfeld will be at Local Harvest this Saturday. | Jennifer Silverberg

As we reported earlier this week, Local Harvest Cafe & Grocery faces imminent closure (and we mean imminent) if it doesn't raise at least $70,000 by February 7. Although there has been some backslash for the community bailout, Local Harvest has already rasied over $40,000.

See also: UPDATED: Local Harvest Cafe & Grocery Launch Fundraiser to Thwart "Imminent Closure"

Curtis Sittenfeld, whose book Sisterland won our award for best book by a local author, made an offer via Twitter this week to help out the beleaguered business. We spoke to her about her proposition and why Local Harvest is important to St. Louis.

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Charlie Gitto's Toasted Ravioli Named One of 33 Iconic American Foods

       The legendary t-ravs at Charlie Gitto's. | Eugene Kim

It's an ongoing battle to claim the original St. Louis toasted ravioli. Restaurant Impossible participant Mama Campisi's maintains it is the home of the original t-rav, as does Charlie Gitto's on the Hill. Either way, both legends revolve around the Oldani family. Strike another point for Charlie Gitto's though: Thrillist named the restaurant's toasted ravioli on its list of 33 iconic American foods.

See also: Vote for St. Louis' Most Overrated Toasted Ravioli

The toasted ravioli is up there with real icons like pastrami at Katz's Deli in New York and chicken and waffles at Roscoe's in Los Angeles. Do you think Charlie Gitto's deserves the title?

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