Jean-Georges Wants to Open a Hotel

ABC Kitchen, the Manhattan shrine to clean eating from French-born chef/owner Jean-Georges Vongerichten—who was recently dubbed the multitalented Picasso of nineties auteur "superstar" chefs by New York's Adam Platt—is nominated for a 2011 James Beard Award. In the clip above, JGV stars in our latest episode of Sin City.

What do you crave most?
Spicy. Spice and spices. I love spicy food, I can't live without it. If a dish is kind of flat one day, the next day I need my chiles. I can't eat without chiles anymore. So chiles are my craving.

Do you know your limits?
No. I haven't tested them yet.

What won't you share?
I don't like to share my private life.

What makes you angry?
Mediocrity.

If you were going to win a medal tomorrow, what would it be for?
Combination of flavors.

Which great idea should have been yours?
Wow. Many of those. Many dishes at the time, I taste something and I don't create it, I say, 'So simple and so stupid—I should have thought of this.' So, many, many, many dish items.

What has been on your to-do list for the longest time?
Open a hotel. Because I feel it's the ultimate pampering. You come to a restaurant, and you are here for two hours, two and a half hours. But if you stay overnight... I am a detail person, so going to your room, having all those different details...and actually breakfast is my favorite meal of the day. I'm a big breakfast guy. When I grew up it was just bread and butter and jam, but to eat breakfast in America— it is eggs, and pancakes, sweet and sour... so, for me a hotel would be it.


ABC Kitchen is nominated for a 2011 James Beard Award in the Best New Restaurant category. For an insider’s look at more nominees, go to Behind The Beards. The Feast will be adding fresh content daily until the winners are announced on Monday, May 9.

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