The week in Cafe Society bloggery: PETA, the Avenue Grill's Andrew Lubatty, MEAT, picnic packing and Chipotle's Steve Ells's new TV gig
1. The fact that Coors Field made PETA''s list of the country's most vegetarian-friendly ballparks, coming in at number five on its annual list, made the rest of us darksiders swear to eat steaks, cheeseburgers, bratwursts and as much pork as possible for as long as it takes PETA to pick on some other city.
2. To add insult to injury, porker Mario Batali jumped on the Meatless Monday bandwagon, preaching abstinence from pork, cow, fowl and fur. Our own Laura Shunk wanted absolutely nothing to do with that kind of pussy preaching, so she railed against Batali by proffering up a half dozen joints in and around Denver whose balls are wrapped around bull, lamb, pig and other carnivorous meat candy.
3. The Avenue Grill's executive chef, Andrew Lubatty, who just returned home from Barack Obama's palatial place of residence in Washington, D.C., as part of the "Chefs Move to School" pilot program, sounds off on filet mignon, steakhouses and customers who blame chefs for wayward teeth in this week's Chef and Tell interview.
2. Even though the weekend temperatures are supposed to be nipple-numbing, brighter days are ahead, and brighter days bring bright smiles to picnic-goers who take over the lawns of city parks across the city. But no park takeover is complete without picnic essentials, which we've entrusted to the hands of Teague Bohlen, who gives us his five best and five worst classic picnic pickings.
1. Steve Ells, founder of the Chipotle Mexican Grill chain (of which there are a now a billion, including one in London) and a former guest on Oprah, is headed back to the television screen, this time as a judge on America's Next Great Restaurant, a new NBC reality show that will give one lucky chef/restaurateur "the opportunity to see their ideas turned into a new restaurant chain in three cities across America."