Speak Up

Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year! or Bring it on, 2008

In just a few short hours 2007 will be just a memory, a short moment in our long lives. So, as tradition has it we are supposed to make a list of things that we suck at and need to improve on. Honestly, I usually don't make resolutions; I was always so tired of the annoying local new anchors gabbing about the SAME ones over and over again. Yes, most of us should drink less, exercise more, and eat healthy. But here are a list of my very own resolutions, no kidding.

***1. Save money to move out of tiny rental condo and BUY a new, owned tiny condo. (This is the big one!)

2. Keep the DCW active and exciting.

3. Pick less battles with chefhusband.

4. Get more haircuts.

5. Break down, and learn to cook for myself. (Things that come in a box won't count)
6. Read more books, starting with "Simmer Down" by Jessica Conant-Park and amazing
chefwife author. (post on book to come later)
7. Meet more phenomenal wives!
8. Travel to Brooklyn.
9. Visit DC on Spring break.
10. Stop meddling in chefhusband's business that is not meant for me.
And your resolutions?
sorry for annoying spacing errors. Resolution number eleven: become a master blogger.

Friday, December 28, 2007

New Years, Sans the Chef

Well, its that time of the year. Holiday parties with houses decorated in gold and red, bottles and bottles of champagne purchased and chilled and the chefs working harder than any other time between January 2nd and Thanksgiving. It's so hardening to think that my chefhusband is starting to associate the most magical time of year with being overworked and left alone. (Can you blame me for that though? If he's working on Thanks, Christmas, and NYs Eve then I'm home with the family.)

I'll be with my chefwife pal, J somewhere in the city. If she wasn't going to be available-I was going to work at his restaurant and check coats. Loser right? Not that checking coats is a loser thing to do, I was actually looking forward to it. But the fact of the matter is-its my chefwife pal or nothing. This time last year I had just moved to Jersey City so I was still settling in. I think I spent New Years unpacking and organizing-hey, at least that was therapeutic and productive.

So what are you plans? I am taking upon myself to assume that your chefs will be slaving away at a special New Years menu in a dark dungeon kitchen as well.


Saturday, December 22, 2007

I stole something...

Today I was in the Costco in P-town, Ohio shopping for refreshments of a sweet nature for an event tomorrow night. My step-dad is playing his annual advent concert at Liberty Presbyterian Church (where I was married) and we were picking up some obviously large quantities of cookies. As we got out of the car we saw a woman drive away,leaving something in her cart. She pushed the cart into the "cart parking spot" leaving a glowing bag of blood oranges behind.

Then we took them.


So was it wrong? Did I really steal? If so,who from? The woman? She left them.Yes I know, the most absolute righteous thing to do would have been to bring them into the store and give them to lost and found: produce division. But I didn't. So what right?

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Tis The Season (for Chinese food)

Wow, December is flying by fast. I do apologize for not being as attentive to the blog as I normally am. I've got gifts to buy and wrap, a trip to pack for, a holiday concert to get going, and I've just been bogged down. I know you are all really busy, too so I'm empathizing.

I just went grocery shopping with the chefhusband and bought him a ton of extra stuff to last while I'm "home for the holidays" in Ohio. I take the car so he's left to his own defenses. That means the Chinese restaurant will be on standby all week. You would think a chef could handle a week of making his own food, or EATING AT HIS OWN RESTAURANT! Oh well.

Happy Holidays to You and Yours,

more to come later, I promise.

Thursday, December 13, 2007


Photo Courtesy: Me!

Last minute shopping? Don't fret or fear, Jules is here!

My most favorite chefwife, J has finally released her line of earrings on etsy.com. She designs and creates each piece with such careful consideration that these earrings will feel like they were made just for you.

I mean, how festive do those blue pearls, aquamarine and crystals look? And $16 for a one of a kind, handmade gift-perfect? Nothing better. So resist the temptation to buy a gift card or a scarf and stop by her website to give someone something really special.




Monday, December 10, 2007

Laughter is the Best Medicine

Maybe we don't have it so bad?
I heard a good one the other day:
Where do Eric Ripert, Jean-Georges, and Daniel Boulud go to get theie chef coats cleaned?
The French Laundry! (zing)

Get it? OK, so that wasn't the best joke. Maybe you've heard better? Then share!!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Several Things About December

What a week! I will spare you the details of my stressful week because I imagine that you have had one too. December sure seems to be taking a toll on everyone. And it's sad too because now my chefhusband says he is starting to hate holidays. I can't blame him though. This time of year is great for business, especially in New York, but that means more private parties and more hours of work each night. And on top of all that, he is working while everyone else gets to relax around a fire and attend quaint holiday parties with red and gold sweaters and cheese trays.

Jean-Georges, if you are reading this-how about closing on a holiday? Just one?

Ha! I can't even type that with a straight face because so much revenue get pulled in on holidays. I just want my man around for Christmas and or New Years. This year will be no different though-ringing in 2008 while sleeping on the sofa waiting for my man. But I'm tough-I can handle it. Thank goodness for family! Then again, maybe I'll come back from Ohio early to pop into Perry St. at midnight to capture a glimpse of my chef while he's at work.


I do have to share two PERFECT gifts for anyone.

A personal calendar from CreatePhotoCalendars. They did a fantastic job with my annual calendar I give to my parents. I know that nearly every photo printer (shutterfly, walmart, Kodak) provide calendars you can make-but this one is the best with up to 9 pictures on a month and tons of borders to choose from.

While I'm giving away free plugs-my father's music makes a great gift as well.
Not that I'm boasting or anything but he's been on Johnny Carson twice, nominated for a couple Grammys, and played for 3 US presidents. Us Records has the best soothing piano music and instrumental cds to add that special touch to your holiday party. Man, I should be a door to door saleswoman.

Well its 7:30 on a Friday night and I think I'm going to play me some Nintendo Wii before falling asleep on the beloved sofa.



Monday, December 3, 2007


Photo Source: Eater.com
This past Saturday night I was lucky enough to turn my usual duo of wives into a trio at Maremma on W 10th between Bleeker and Hudson. I met a newlywed chefwife, M to share pasta and tiramisu with.
The staff at Maremma is one worth writing about. I had originally made a ressy for 6 people and it quickly dwindled down to a cozy three. I was worried about being charged for not bringing my whole party but after calling the reservationist several times and bothering the hell out her we worked it all out. She was more than kind and her voice actually seemed happy to be speaking with me. The smiles didn't stop there. Both hostesses (and maybe the same reservationsist I spoke with on the phone) were kind and bubbly when I arrived. Though I was late no thank you to the broken downtown 1 line. Nightmare.
And as far as food goes I enjoyed myself and will be back for more-probably bringing the chefhusband. We were practically buried in wines and appetizers and a trio of desserts picked out by the personable Chef Cesare Casella himself who was flaunting a chef coat pocket of fresh herbs. (even after hours in his street clothes shirt pocket) We each ordered a pasta to warm us up: the pescatora, moonshine, and I had the special of rigatoni with bacon and red onion. I wish I had a bigger bowl it was so good. Simplistic and tasty-just how I like.
So-go there, it's worth it. It's the place on 10th with the lime green doors and bubbly hostesses.

Friday, November 30, 2007

The "Chef" Excuse

My chef has got some terrible disease called "donteverpickuparoundthehouse" and I'm tired of fixing this ailment by doing everything myself. I will no longer enable him!

Do you ever get the excuse: "I work a lot" or "I don't have time for that". I mean, I love my chef but sometimes I think he's immune to housework. And it's partly my fault because I enable him by cleaning up ALL the time. And to top it off I'll do something like let's say pay all the bills and he would never notice because I get the bills from the mailbox, pay them online, and file them away before he even comes home. He doesn't even see half the stuff I do.

Are you hearing me ladies? And I know it's not just chefs either. I imagine that doctors and lawyers and engineers and others who work "long hours" play up the same syndrome to their wives. Yes, my chefhusband does work an abnormal amount of hours as do yours-BUT what the hell does he think I do all day? Lay around watching Oprah and reading RedBook? I work more than full time as a teacher, plus all the work I bring home. PAH-LEEZ!

I just hope he doesn't read this and make me delete it like so many other in-the-heat-of-my-rage-posts.


Thursday, November 29, 2007

Under the Kitchen Christmas Tree

Has your chef been naughty or nice? Now is the time to make your list and check it twice. My chef has been asking for several cooking related items (other than all the video games and electronics he wants).

Obviously my chef forgot how much teachers make because this year he asked me for a:
- professional mixer
- professional food saver
- deep fryer
- pressure cooker

I'm curious to know what your chefs are asking for this year. A new knife? Prada shoes for the kitchen? A Blackberry to email 'corporate office'? Bacon of the month club membership?

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The First Supper

You've heard of the last supper, well now we are going to discuss the first supper. That is to say the first meal your chef ever made for you. Was he a cook? A chef? Was even in culinary school? Did you like it? Did you run to the bathroom screaming? Did you sell the recipe to Kraft and make a fortune?

I wish I could say I remember my "first meal" cooked by my chefhusband. We started dating in high school so we shared many other firsts, just not a meal. When I first met him he wanted to be a musician: a drummer. But he eventually turned away from that lifestyle because he was fearful of the schedule and low pay. AND LOOK AT US NOW! HA, HA, HA. Oh well.

I will however share with a picture of my last meal cooked by him. It was at Perry St. last week with my family, this picture shows the snapper and radish plate. I'm not a foodie so those are all the details you'll be getting unless you've got a Perry St. menu to reference.


I am planning a DCW get together soon (a Saturday night) for us ladies to meet up and chirp. I'll keep you posted on the date, time, and place.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Marks of a Chef

Eric Simpson is the tournant at Perry St. and works very closely with my chefhusband. I sat down with him (via Myspace) to discuss his tattoos, particularly his left arm which is covered in food tattoos. When I first met Eric a while back I was intrigued with it and I’m so grateful to be able to share it with you. It seems like there are many chefs with tattoos; The NY Times did an article complete with slideshow on the matter back in 2005.

H: What was your first tattoo and when did you get it?
E: My first tattoo was the sun on my back; I got it when I was seventeen. The food sleeve is a funny thing. I mean, there are many ways of looking at it. There are the individual foods, the overall piece of art, inspiration, etc. I suppose there are two reasons for the food sleeve. One, the obvious because of the love for my creative medium. Two, it started with one food tattoo that I got in remembrance of a close friend who passed away.

H: Tell me what is on the “food sleeve”.
E: The food sleeve has the fish (opakapaka or crimson snapper), a pheasant, chickens, pig, rabbit, rib eye, and some veggies. There are a few little empty spaces that need to be filled and I’ve been telling everyone to help me decide what should fill the gaps.

H: What else needs to be done to complete it?
E: Oh man, there is a long way to go as you can see in the picture! I’d say it will take a few more months of work with artist/maniac Seth Wood at Daredevil Tattoos* (located on the Lower East Side) He is definitely one of the best there is. The best part about it is that Seth is a vegan. We have had some great talks about ethics and morals and food and tattoos to no end.

H: Tell me about your other tattoos. Any that you regret?
E: You know well enough that I have my share of tattoos and it is a strange relationship. Other than that my tattoos go from a moustache to bumble bees to an anatomical heart to a slightly pornographic robot. My first tattoo (the stupid sun on my back) is my least favorite, but I don’t regret it at all. It was a catalyst for tattoos to come and definitely marked a time in my life

H: Now, explain this pornographic robot…
E: Ha, I knew I was asking for trouble bringing up the robot. It’s on my thigh so it rarely gets noticed to begin with. It’s kind of an outlet of my comic cynicism, mixed with a reference to an eighties sci fi movie called Cherry 2000(it’s kind of about the perfect wife gone wrong). The tattoo is a topless blonde with her robot face exposed, looking kind of rusty and broken. Behind that is a banner that says 'true love'.

H: Perfect wife gone wrong? Oh there are so many chefwife comments in here, but I’ll hold back because I like you, Eric Simpson. I do love the idea of the anatomical heart. I'm a huge fan of science and heart seems very romantic to me. Your thoughts behind the heart?
E: The anatomical heart is also wood grained. It is my quiet homage to Pinocchio - yep, there's the sensitive side 'I just want to be a real boy"...ha.

H: So, do you like girls with tattoos or does it matter at all?

E: Tattoos on girls? It depends on the girl. Some people wear tattoos better than others. On the right girl, it’s just that much more right.

H: I agree with you completely about women and tattoos and I feel the same way for men; it all depends on who can pull it off. (I think I just answered my final question! haha) I think most chefs can-the whole artistic cheftosterone thing.
Speaking of ladies-do you ever find it hard to get dates with your schedule?
E: My schedule makes it difficult to get second dates...ha! Ok, I’m exaggerating. The lifestyle is definitely a stumbling block for dating but is by no means insurmountable.

H: And your career, where have you been and where do you plan on going?
E: Career wise, I started out in Miami, worked in a couple fine dining restaurants there (post cooking school). Then wound up busting my ass for the sake of working in a Michelin star kitchen in England - it was before the Michelin guide came to the states, so it felt like a huge deal to work in a Michelin star kitchen. From there, back to Miami until it just didn’t seem fast paced enough for me, leading me to NYC and working at Perry Street.
I’d say I simply want to focus my future on growing as a chef in NYC and then take it from there...

H:Ever been turned down for a job based on your tattoos?
E: I have never had an issue with my tattoos and new jobs. I try to carry myself in a way that shows confidence in my appearance, hoping that others follow suit. Funny thing is that the prospective employers usually point them out and ask about them. My point of view has always been that the quality of my work speaks for itself, everything else - tattoos included, are secondary.

H: I’m thinking of getting a tattoo on my inner bottom lip: “chefwife”….too much?
E: Hilary, I outright dare you to get that tattoo! Plus, getting your lip tattooed is almost 'semi permanent' - tattoos tend not to hold up too well there and don’t really hurt... in reality, I’d probably drop dead on the spot if you actually did that.

And we ended with that. I’ll keep you posted on my tattoo, I’m leaning towards no, but probably one day when I’m feeling tyra-banks-fierce I’ll bust out that pouting lip used for crying to the chef and get inked.

*Daredevil Tattoos' very own Seth is responsible for the art on Eric’s arm. They have even worked on Chef Aaron Sanchez from Paladar, whose restaurant is across the street.

Ideas for comments:
-How awesome is Eric’s arm?
-Does your chef have a tattoo…or a food tattoo?
-Ideas for filling in Eric's food sleeve!! ( I think Erik should pick his favorite fruit/veg from each season and put them on this arm)


Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

As much as we complain and gripe on this blog it is important to recognize and be thankful for all of the things that we do have. I am blessed in so many ways and privileged to be able to be married to a chef. I am thankful for this blog. I say it all the time but not enough on here. Many of you email me and thank me for writing it, but the more women I meet, the more supported I feel. I am grateful for your stories and empathy.

I wish you all a happy and relaxing Thanksgiving weekend.


Monday, November 19, 2007

Thanksgiving Minus the Chef

So one of my new chefwife pals, BB, gave me a great idea for a post. Which I love because YOU are my inspiration...and the wind beneath my wings and all that crap.

With Thanksgiving just a few short days away I'm curious to know what all of your plans are? Is your chef home? Are you going to visit your folks? Cooking for one? Parade? Football? Let's hear it!
As for me, my most perfectly imperfect family is coming out from Columbus, Ohio to stay for several days and watch the parade from chefwife J's office on Broadway-among other things. You know we'll be hitting up Canal St. for some Christmas gifts. My chef is working so my family won't even get to see him. Been there, done that! I'm so annoyed. BUT on the bright side, because there is always one) my folks will FINALLY get to eat at Perry St. As much as I will miss my man on Thanksgiving one of the best perks to being a chefs' wife is when you see him walk from his kitchen in his whites to greet you at your table. Nothing better. For those few instances when he's with you at the table you feel as if you are married to the most important man in the world. But really, aren't we all?

As far as Thanksgiving food goes, it might be something on Mulberry St, it might be Chinese food because there is no way I'm cooking. (I have no idea how!)

Leave some comments on your plans!


My most perfectly imperfect family. July 07 (minus the chef of course!)

Saturday, November 17, 2007

ChefWife BB Knows What's Up

ChefWife BB from NYC guessed it right. My husband Erik Battes is the chef de cuisine at Perry St. I'm so happy to be able to say it now. When I first created this blog he didn't want me to even whisper his name outloud anywhere near a computer. Now he proofs my posts and he even wrote one: ChefWife Husband, in September. Now don't get me wrong he still puts his foot down Ricky Ricardo style once in a while. Its not always 4 star perfection around here.


Undocumented Tips

Yes, you heard it here first. My husband made a veg plate for a vegan customer last night and it was so good that she told the server she would personally tip my husband (in a non-montetary way. wink wink. Sorry, but I've got to keep this post semi PG rated.) Of course my faithful chefhusband turned down the offer (at least that's what he told me) He did however offer any other cook to go upstairs and say they were the chef. As far as I know no one stepped up to the plate. Don't guys yearn for these sorts of opportunities? Hello??

I wonder what else has been offered up behind closed doors? The "fourth course" as Josh Ozersky put it. I have heard some pretty outrageous stories over the years but now I'm wondering what you have to say. Leave comments and I'll even let you can be as anonymous as you want. Apparently I need to juice up this blog somehow.


On another notes as to who my mysterious husband is....the picture here is of the carpet at the restaurant. Any guesses now?


Friday, November 16, 2007

Grub Street

Yeah this DCW things is blowing up right in front of me. Check out today's Grub Street post on yours truly. I am a little depressed though-no guesses as to my chef's home away from home. C'mon, get in there and guess! It's easy and all the cool kids are doing it.

It's not even a secret anymore. Most everyone knows who actually knows me or him in person.

Well, stop reading this and get your yourself to the other street I love, Grub Street.


Thursday, November 15, 2007

Loss for Words

Hello All. I definitely wish I could have been around more this week, but its been cray-zay. And now that I am sitting down in my most favorite spot I'm suffering from acute writers block. Mainly because I'm not really a writer. Yes, the jig is up.
So please help me by telling me what you like to read about the most here. Interviews? (I'm thinking of a certain chef I'd like to get my hands on) News in the biz? Have you got any funny stories for me? Talk to me!

Friday, November 9, 2007

My Chef's Addiction

My chef is quite particular about certain things, especially those regarding food and the kitchen. Yes, he's loves new shoes, leather jackets, video games, and electronics. But as far as his domain goes he is a sucker for:


We went to Sam's Club a couple months ago and I thought he was going to wet himself when he saw the industrial size box of 3000 square feet of plastic wrap. 3000 square feet: that like 35x the size of our apartment! This thing weighs about 12 pounds and cost over $10. Which is fine by me because it will last forever; I plan on passing it on to my first born chef. It was an investment.

He loves these types of things. And I've come to the realization that I cannot change that; I accept his obsessions. Some of his other "cannot survive without them" items include:

-drinks. We always have at least 5 different kinds of drinks (non alcoholic) and we go through them like they're holy water. (Come on over! We've got Turkey Hill green tea, milk, water, soda, Gatorade, and lemonade.

-Chinese food. If it were up to him we would have a standing order for fried dumplings, general Tso's chicken and shrimp lo mein. {{{But I don't like standing orders. I like calling in the order; it shows respect for the chef.}}}

-DVR. If that man couldn't tape all the chef shows and survivorman shows and south park shows on TV then he would implode from work-stress.

Do you know a chef with with a food related obsession? Tell me about it.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

New York City's Sexiest Chef

And no, my bandanna wearing husband isn't on the list. It's better that way-wouldn't want to deal with crazy groupies. (oh this picture to the side here is a sexy lady chef halloween costume...think about it for next year)

My chefwife pal, J found something very interesting the other day. The Daily News is having a contest set up so you can vote for a sexy chef and your vote also counts as a entry in their contest.

The prize? Dinner for two at the winner's restaurant. (A $150 gift certificate not good on gratuities or alcohol.)

The catch? You have to register with The Daily News. No biggie though-its free.

The chefs? You've got 11 to choose from and they all look like young hipsters from the new forefront in the culinary world of NYC. I'm young myself but where's the older generation of pros like Jean-Georges and Daniel Bouloud? Now those are some handsome men. Then again the contest refers to the "sexiest chef" not the "most appealing chef who you want to sweep you off your feet".

For a list of the chefs and a small piece on their "sexy" lives click HERE.

The rules? You can vote once a day until 11:59 (ET) on Monday, November 12. Every day that you vote you receive another entry in the contest. Not too bad, eh? You can vote in 3 categories for each chef: "Hot", "Very Hot", and "Sizzling". Which is a little unfair because maybe I don't think they are even at the hot level-but I'll play along.

I like this contest because it gives REAL chefs a time to shine in the spotlight and promotes their restaurants. I don't like it though because it sends a message to single women that chefs are all sexy beasts. Well, when they come home complaining at 2am and they get calls from work at all hours of the night on their few days off...they ain't so sexy. But those chef whites....they look like culinary angels. (Wow-I do have the capability of saying completely moronic things. )


PS. I'll probably continue to vote "sizzling" for Craig Koetsu the exec. chef at Park Avenue Autumn. He looks good.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

View From the Outside

Most people I know are not in relationships with chefs yet their reactions to my husband's career is humorous to say the very least.

Does my husband make his own "sauce"? Nope. I'll be honest and say my man uses sauce out of a jar. When he does have time to make sauce from scratch we won't be anywhere near the kitchen. (yee-ah Roy)

Do I cook for my husband? Why wouldn't I? I'm not scared of what he'll say about my cooking. I don't expect him to be able to explain to an eight year old how to "borrow and carry over"

Do we watch the Food Network? Sure we do, I'm all over Unwrapped. But NO my husband does NOT find inspiration from the Food Network.

Have you ever been asked questions that get you a little annoyed? Let me know!


Sunday, November 4, 2007

Tell Me What YOU Think!

I will try to make this post sound as objective as possible without getting too personal about my chef-otherwise he'll make me delete this post and I really your help!

It seems to me that my chef is in a really grumpy mood when he gets out of work, especially on Saturday nights. Now, when he comes home to find me sleeping he's fine: a great guy-listens to my day, tells me about his, we veg out- it's great. But when he meets up with me after work on a Saturday he turns into an old grump.

Do your chefs get moody after work?

Mine does. I'm beginning to think that meeting up with him is a huge mistake on Saturday nights. I'm just so tempted because its so convenient. We often gather near his restaurant, we are done for the night right around the time that he gets off, and I also feel more safe traveling home with him instead of by myself.

Please help me ladies. This chefwife is desperate for some advice.


Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

Trick-or-Treat! I'm sure those of you with children are getting ready for trick-or-treating, Halloween parties, and passing out candy for door to door kids in Optimus Prime costumes.

I'll be home tonight (alone...duh) and I'll pass out candy in my Hermione Granger (from Harry Potter) costume.

I hope your chefs are around to see the little ones dressed as polyester witches and Disney princesses. I'd be happy to share pictures on this site if you email them to me. I hope that when I CHOOSE to have children they will be able to spend this hyperactive holiday with their father. Until then, I'll stand on the other side of the trick-or-treating door.

Also, enjoy the pic of my chef and I at Jean Georges. I totally forgot we took it! And in the spirit of Halloween I've added a disguise to my husband until I'm allowed to reveal his identity. Check out my most favorite egg caviar. Perfectly blended flavors, textures, and architectural design-that's JG in an eggshell.
Oh I slay me.


Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Tools of the Trade

I am not ashamed to say the chef and I came from nearly nothing when we moved to NY in 2004. Well, we had two cars filled with clothes and some lamps and such, but really-how much can you fit in a couple of automobiles? Some of our first cookware was from Wal-Mart. And no, I'm not ashamed of that either.

You see the chef refuses to cook with some sub-par (aside from us NEEDING a boiling pot from Wal-Mart) so he wouldn't buy anything unless it was All-Clad "because that's what real kitchens use". Well it was fine by me because I didn't really mind the Wal-Mart stuff. But it was getting a little annoying-I mean sort of embarrassing.

Then one day I struck gold! I was in Ohio visiting the fam at one my most favorite shops: Home Goods. I was searching in the kitchen wares section through countless little Italian porcelain chefs holding novelty signs "The Kitchen is Open" , "Live Laugh Love" when I saw it. A 12 inch All -Clad saute pan with lid! Right in the middle of HOME GOODS! Now, something had to be wrong with it since it was in HomeGoods, they were not able to sell me a full priced saute pan. But I let out a sigh of relief when I noticed the "blemish"- a 6 inch scratch on the bottom of the pan. Not too bad for $89.

Again a year later or so I was in Ohio again, and yes I was in HomeGoods (family tradition) and I found another pot!!! This time it was an 8 quart copper core pot with a lid! Again it was discounted at an extreme rate and I couldn't pass it up. So what if the lid was a little tight on it!

So now I have decided that Ohio only means good things for us. We found two amazing pans/pots and my chef was promoted twice while on vacay with me in Ohio. And he still won't move there (???) Haha.

The plan is to continue to hunt for All-Clad cookware and never pay full price. I should have a complete set by 2012.


Thursday, October 25, 2007

Hometown Hotness

Due to a considerable amount of emails/comments/myspace chatting/ I have realized that there are a lot of people reading this blog from all over the world! I cannot wait to see the global impact of this blog as more people pass by here. Dear God, thank you for the internet. Love, ME. So check out the map to the right as it explodes in little dots similar to ice cream of the future: dip n dots.
As for this wife, I lay my head in Newport, NJ at night, I blog via NYC, visit the folks in Columbus, OH, and rep Los Angeles where I lived with the chef for 17 years.



Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The Big 5-0.

Yes that's right my last post "Jean-Georges" was my fiftieth post! I haven't been around that long as a blogger but 50 is a milestone no matter how you look at it. As I celebrate this 50th post I am elated and grateful. Grateful for every person who reads my blog-even once. I am indebted though to the people who follow this blog and support the DCW.
Thank you readers! Please keep me on my toes: tell me when I say something you love or hate. Tell me your woes and your joys as a chefwife or member of this INSANE industry.
Look for a post about a my personal collection of kitchen essentials. You guessed it: the pots and pans.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Jean Georges

Photo by Noah Kalina
This Thursday, October 25, my chef and I will celebrate 2 years of marriage and 10 years of dating. Big deal right? So yesterday my husband took me to eat at my most favorite restaurant: Jean Georges.

From start to finish the meal was exceptional. I'm not a foodie or a reviewer so I'm not going to gush over the exquisite food but I will say this: Jean-Georges and his team are some of the most highly skilled people in the industry with dedication and drive beyond all else. This passion shows up in every bite of the dishes.

I would love to thank those responsible for the meal personally again here on the blog, but I'm not sure if they would like to be named. (Of course if they do want to to be named I would LOVE to-they can email me.) So I'll thank their generic titles.
My most gracious thanks to our server, sommelier, Johnny Iuzzini (I'll name him because I don't think he'll mind) and the best chefs around.



Sunday, October 21, 2007

Borough Food and Drink

Last night my main gal pal and chefwife J and I went to Borough in the East Village on 22nd and Broadway and were mostly just weirded out. Borough's hook: "Showcasing the diverse food and drink of New York"

I do have to remind myself sometimes that not every restaurant in the city is going to be an A+ experience. As much as I reminded myself of this, I was still annoyed most of the time. And I was double annoyed when I dropped a sausage and it landed on my jacked and totally ruined it. Even J's Tide Stick couldn't save the day. But that I know, was completely my own fault.

So, I walk in the door and love the decor right away, comforting, comfortable, and cool. The wood all over the places make you forget your floating on a concrete island. I approached the podium and to me, when a patron approaches the podium any conversations between the staff should end until I'm seated when they can continue to talk about Justin Timberlake and the sale at Macy's. BUT, that's just me. So besides being ignored for a moment several other oddities occurred. Oddly enough there is one for each borough of NY.

1. The hostess wasn't really sure if I should pay my lounge tab at the lounge or if it could carry over to the table. She told me she was worried that I wouldn't pay. Makes me think I shouldn't have.

2. We were approached twice with food that was soon realized to have belonged to another table.

3. The waiter asked us twice within a few minutes what kind of water we wanted, then a busser came over and asked us again.

4. While the server was explaining the specials another server interrupted him and forgot the wise teachings of Molly Manners: "excuse me".

5. After I paid my lounge tab (in cash) the waiter came back and asked for the bill back. (?)

The food was good, the sausage was a little greasy (hence my irremovable stain), but very very tasty. So, not a horrible experience-just odd and unusual. I hope I don't sound like a food snob but every wife knows that being married to a chef you are exposed to so many amazing dining experiences that you know what restaurants are capable of.
The night wasn't a total bust though. J and her chef and my chef and I got together at our local spot Dublin. (which I love more and more every time I go)


Saturday, October 20, 2007

I found peace on Google.com

Ironically enough, I found your site because I googled "dating a chef is so hard."

A fellow chefwife-let's just call her S-wrote to me and the first line of the email was the sentence above. How amazing did I feel at that very moment? Cloud Nine.

When I was getting frustrated with the industry, the hours, the pay, and all the others chef qualities thrown at me I sought help from Google as well. But there was nothing! Well, actually there was one article written by Juliet Rossant of Super Chef Blog that inspired me. Other than that-there was nothing.

Now when women in desperation seek Google for help they find me. Such a thrill and an honor to know that now there is help. If we lean on each other we can share our stories and feel less alone and aggravated. (at least I hope)

I do owe a lot to Google for this very blog (powered by blogger) and all the searches I've done. If you were to hack me here is a list of searches you would actually find:

boyfriend is a chef
casey top chef
David and Karen Waltuck
NYC chefs
smelly chef
young chef
desperate wives
PX this
famous chefs' wives

Have a nice weekend!


Friday, October 19, 2007

I OWN the Desperate Chefs' Wives!

Its official ladies and gents http://www.desperatechefswives.com/ is MINE! I own it and I feel like I truly deserve it. Not becasue of the writing or my sensational sense of humor (ha) but because I spent hours peeling the internet for some sense about setting up my new blog site. Buying the domain was easy, but getting it to link with my old blog site was a NIGHTMARE.

Literally, I was screaming and crying last night and for some reason I tried again today and got it to work! Hazah! So yeah, I hate and love computers. Mostly love.

Pass the word the DC dubs have got there own spot on the net.



gotta run, the chef and I will be celebrating 2 years of marriage next week and 10 years of dating so he needs a gift!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Ex-chef wife gets BIG MONEY

Chef John Burton Race and his mistress bag hag.

This story is copy and pasted from Daily Mail and its gooood. I'll make it easier on you and highlight the most read worthy quotes and tid bits.

Cheating chef walks out on his family for mistress and secret child


Last updated at 08:27am on 20th March 2007
He describes himself as a devoted husband and relocated his family to France so he could "spend more time with them". But celebrity chef John Burton Race has left his wife Kim feeling betrayed after leaving her and their six children for another woman - who secretly had his child.

The flamboyant 49-year-old restaurateur, currently based in Dartmouth, Devon, has a two-year-old son with 40-year-old Susan Ward, his agent's former personal assistant.

The source added: "John has admitted to Kim that he has a child with this other woman."
Susan Ward is believed now to sell greetings cards. Burton Race has been away filming his latest TV series but Kim, 42, his second wife, confirmed that he had walked out on the family.
She said: "The children and I are feeling betrayed and very fragile at what we have discovered."
On his website, Burton Race modestly describes himself as "a television natural, discerning author, shrewd businessman, eloquent orator, devoted husband, father of six, dog walker of two". He adds that he is "a culinary genius and a big softie at heart".

The three-time Michelin starred chef has moved in with mistress Susan Ward.

According to a source close to the family, he has been seeing her for more than three years "so maybe he moved his family to Devon just so he could be near her".

Burton Race was featured in the Channel 4 series French Leave and Return of the Chef.
He uprooted his wife and children to France and then Devon in his "quest for fine ingredients", saying he hoped to "rediscover his family, his love of cooking and his creativity".
The resulting pressures and arguments were lovingly recorded by a camera crew. Burton Race described himself to one interviewer as a "loud-mouthed, disagreeable, arrogant git".
He added: "I've had a wife who's in the business, and that has its problems, and I've had a wife who isn't in the business, and that has its problems.

"I'm not saying chefs are better off alone. They need someone to care for them, too.

"But if you're attracted to the madness of a chef, the excitement of him, why spend all your life trying to mould him into being someone else? Get another bloke."

His current restaurant, the New Angel, opened in May 2004. It won a Michelin star within three months and both he and his wife have worked hard to make it a success. They have two children, Charles, nine, and Amelia, eight, while Kim has four children from her previous marriage, Eve, 20, Amelia, 18, Martha, 17, and Eliza, 11.

The couple met 11 years ago on a Caribbean island at a mutual friend's birthday party.
Both were married at the time, and Burton Race went through a bitter divorce from his French first wife, with whom he has two more children.

Like many chefs, Burton Race has a fiery temper.

Two years ago, armed police swooped on his home after a 999 call reporting that he had threatened to shoot stepdaughter Eve's boyfriend.

An update on the settlement: John is ordered to pay his ex-chefs' wife $7.2 million.

Me? Ask me any other day about women getting loads of money from divorce settlements and I'm usually the first to disagree with paying them out. But cheating...I don't know. If I were her, I would want it all too. Sweet revenge.

At least the cheating sack was right about one thing: chefs do need someone to care for them.

Thank you, CHEFSWIVES.



Monday, October 8, 2007


I've got a couple new things on the blog to blab about. First-you'll see a poll that's on the top right: "What do you normally order to drink at a restaurant". I'd like to see your responses on that.

Also, waaaaay down at the bottom of the screen I've got a working link of the best chef television programming. This chef thing is getting so popular I could start my own network of chef shows. My new favorite one is 'After Hours with Daniel'. Not sure if everyone can get it. It's on the MAN CHANNEL, Mojo. Daniel is known to follow old school French management techniques (yelling and screaming) in the kitchen but on this show he is one smoooooooth and charming chef. Yum. He eats at all the hot spots 'after hours' with fellow chefs and sometimes actors, comedians, and community well knowns. They eat late and share captivating stories of all things chef. His next season is starting soon where he'll be in Los Angeles.

So that's all folks.

Sunday, October 7, 2007


Check out FoodCandy.com for my interview with the "guy behind Food Candy", dB. It it there that you can actually see pictures of me. Yes, ladies-I'm coming out. I figured I can show my face now without compromising my husband's career.
Food Candy is a great site for food lovers to come together and share ideas and stories and such.


Saturday, October 6, 2007

The Desperate Chefs' Knives

What is a chef without his symbolic knife? The heated power that floods out with every stroke is not just a tool that each chef uses. It is an exit for the passion that flows from the chef's hands and mind. And it is this necessary and appreciated tool that also sends grown men home with cuts, gashes, and other wounds of honor.

You can purchase one at the nearest $ store or search the world over to end up in Japan facing an 80 year old man who makes just a few knives each year that will cost thousands of dollars. The knives they use I thought were made of simple steel but my chef quickly corrected me: "No, there's virgin steel, stainless steel, alloy steel, blue steel, white steel, and steel blends." Silly me, why didn't I know that?

We always end up at Korin (downtown on Warren between W. Broadway and Church and Koring.com) that has the most helpful and courteous staff. When the chef is drooling over the knives through the glass cases I keep myself entertained reading the cookbooks or sitting at their little table. I think they put it there for chefswives. Even if the chef is going just to pick up a sharpening stone he always wanders towards the high end knives and gives me that look. And you know he loves the professional discount. Ah, the sweet taste of recognition and privilege.

The picture below shows Korin's showroom in downtown NYC.

I'm not sure about your chefs, but I know mine is very particular about his knives. He rolls his eyes when he has to cook at my parent's house who have common 'housewife knives'. He understands now that home and professional kitchens are different. After all, even my own kitchen has the hand me down knives that were once thought of to be amazing in my chef's culinary school days.
I remember that first call from the CIA. He was so impressed with the school grade knives that he wouldn't dare buy now. And when tv shows portray someone rapidly stroking a knife across a steel. "Ah!" I hear. "What are they doing? They're ruining the knife!" Knives are best kept sharp in order to prevent injuring yourself as well as yielding a better product. My chef sharpens his knives everyday and he has influenced his cooks to do the same. Dedication.

Hey Korin, you can make my chef "Chef of the Month" anytime!

I'm Famous!

Well, sorta. Check out this Sunday's NY Post and Page Six Magazine inside for an article on the most interesting topic ever: chefswives!
I did an interview a few weeks ago with a wonderful writer who saw a topic that needed to be explored. I know some chefs and thus some chefswives don't like Page Six because it is a gossip column, but not me! My chef hasn't been trashed, he's not known enough to get trashed. Not yet at least.


Friday, October 5, 2007

There's Been A Hold Up

Greetings Wives!

I have to apologize for not writing in over a week. I have been working more than ever and the chef is on a new schedule as well (more hours of course) so things have been a bit bumpy around here. (I'm eating mashed potatoes for breakfast, does that tell you anything?)

I've got a few new articles I'm working on such as "knives: the extension of the chef" and a couple others. Plus we have to talk about a couple new shows that involve chefs and chefswives.

Sorry for the delay-you'll get your stuff soon.


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Googly Eyed Rat

So tell me why I spend my Scholastic bonus points on a Ratatouille book? There are plenty of other educational books I could have got for my students, but no-the first on the list was a book about a rat that can cook.

I'm a rat myself. Googly little eyes that bug out when even a glimmer of the word "chef" shows up within ten feet around me. I can't help it. I want to get my hands on all things chef; like if I don't embrace it then it will disappear.

It's like when your 8 years old and fall in love with Care Bears or Mickey, or Barbie and then all of the sudden everything you own must reflect that love. Soon your walls are covered in Care Bear comforters, lamps, rugs and sleeping bags. You've got the lunchbox, pencil box, and tv tray. The sweater your wearing has those damn bears on it and so does your underwear for pete's sake. If they had chef underwear-you know I'd wear them. Actually, those would be cute...little boy shorts with "chefwife" written on the back. Now don't go stealing that idea- chefswives only.


Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Says GQ

The August issue of GQ ran a blurb about kitchens and cooking and knives and all things such with a "5 Things You Don't" list. Nothing was worth making a reality show after, but number 5-decide for your self:

"A Sous Chef. Cooking with your wife guarantees a ferocious screaming match. Unless you're true soul mates, cook alone. Trust us."


Trust us? Who's us? A 32 year old male writer with a corner office who's never dated a chef let alone cooked anything but burgers with with his other baseball cap wearing Hobokenites? ( i might be terribly wrong. but im not. probably)

So I'm a little annoyed. No, I'd never cook with my chef, not my thing. But I certainly don't want anyone telling me I can't.

And I know there are a lot of chefswives out there who do cook with their hubbies. So I'm sticking up for you. Speak up.

It's cool though. I like GQ-except for the food and wine writer Alan whatever his name is. I'll complain about that later.


Saturday, September 22, 2007


My mother in law reads this blog and supports it. I appreciate that. A lot. She designed the logo too. Pretty snazzy huh? Well, she made me another sign the other day and I thought it quite fitting for us wives. I'll share it below:

I did make lemonade didn't I?



Thursday, September 20, 2007

Chef Wife Husband (The Simple Definition)

Chef Wife Husband – (noun) – a chef in a relationship with – although not necessarily married to – a chef wife. Usually has only one career, but spends what little time he has outside of work trying to make his chef wife happier and more tolerant of how much time he is spending at work. Understands terms such as: “sacrifice”, “hard work”, and “sleep deprivation”. Doesn’t understand but deals with concepts like: chef wives constant complaining about how much they work, the general assumption that we work holidays by choice (and do it just to spite them), the complaints of having cheap and quickly prepared meals after working a 16 hour days (We don’t ask you to continue to do your jobs when you get home after working for only half as long as we have), chef wives’ general feeling of “if you are only awake for 1 hour per day outside of work, then you better do everything in your power to make it the greatest hour of my life”, and the always prevalent entitled attitude. After all, aren’t we working this hard so we can become “big deals” and create a better life for the both of us?

written by the chef himself.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Whose Space?

Yep that's right ladies, the DC dubs have moved to myspace. I've decided to reach out to all the cool kids so if you've got a myspace-add me. Of course all the juicy drama and nonsensical writing will remain here.


Saturday, September 15, 2007

The Fine Print

I'm passing along this article to you my chefwife friends and other lovers of all things DCW because my mother-in-law gave it to me and well, it's worth passing on.

I certainly don't endorse everything said in the article, but for the most part-it sounds about right. EXCEPT for #7...you CAN change a man...and they can CHANGE you. Don't believe me? I don't care. Changing people isn't bad. It's when our attitude becomes static that we become ignorant and repulsive.

So have a read:


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Who's Got it Worse?

So I'm sitting in bed with my chef this morning and I say to him, "Sometimes I wish I could just come home from work, kick off my shoes and relax like you do without having to clean the house".
And he responds with, "Well, that would never happen. I work A LOT of hours".

Yeah chef, but just because I work an 8 hour day and not a 12 hour day doesn't mean I deserve that nonsense. PAH-LEASE. I may not cater to hungry foodies but I do have to teach children. nuf said. Oh, then I come home, pay the bills, clean the house, make dinner, and all the other little bits of life that come pittering on my head. Not to mention I remain absolutely stunning day in an day out. ha.


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Celebrate Our Unity, Honor Our Diversity

Once in a while this chefwife needs to reflect on a few things. This blog doesn't have to do with chefs or restaurants, but something greater.

A brass ensemble plays in the cool breeze of this September evening. There is a woman in red. She wears a flag on her shirt. Her eyes occasionally gaze up towards the east, towards the grave site of her loved one. A framed pictures of a woman in her hand.

I never felt this way before. It was September 11th, 2002 when I gained closer, 12 months after the fact. But today when I saw this woman mourning her loved one I felt something different: sympathy. Why did God choose to take away her loved one? Only she knows.

But as I stand here singing patriotic songs with my neighbors I am smiling proud. How could I not? The greatest city in the world is my next door neighbor.

I can't help glancing back at her. I wonder who the woman in the picture is. A sister? A friend? A neighbor? How many tears has she shed? How many times do her eyes wander towards a changed New York. How does she cope? Does she get angry? Terrified? Lonely?

My life seems to trivial compared to my neighbor in the red who lost her loved one. I think I'll go buy my chef something from the bakery. Life is too short not to say to the ones you love, "I love you"




I love you: erik, mom, david, dad, lorna, chris, tina, cosette, uncle john, aunt carma, josh, josiah, jesse, james, aunt caralee, uncle mike, kane, cadelee, olivia, mikalynn, uncle cam, grandma, grandpa (in heaven) and G & G eppley


Sunday, September 9, 2007

Boats and Blogs

OMG-I love blogging. The people I meet here are so much more breathable than everyone else. (My chefswives are definately breathable of course too) The net folks choose to come and here and I choose to go there. I love it. No fakeness, because what would be the point of that?

and another thing I love:

Have I mentioned how much I love the NYC area? And I have to say "area" because I technically live in Jersey City. And the best part too-NEWPORT. The best views, quiet people, boats and water, and not too many of those studio sized compact dogs. I've got the most tender little park with a mini lighthouse and a view of NY.

So today while I was soaking up some last minute summer sun I heard a rumble in the water. The NY Super Boat Grand Prix had super speed boats zipping up and down the Hudson to 42nd and back down again. And it was just this morning that I was reading in PXthis about Abbe Diaz watching the race from her JC pad. That's just weird, right? It's not deja vu-its something else-you hear about someone doing something, then it happens to you. I don't know-just weird I guess.

I wonder if Marja was watching from the other side of the river. She's like the ultimate chefwife. But I'm not a creeper like that. She just happens to live across the street/river from me. teehee.



Saturday, September 8, 2007

Latest Biz Craze

If you like 'meta-fictional restaurant drama' read this:

I don't have sympathy, but everyone else is up in arms over the new blog-anon on the net.

That was short-but I gotta bounce-dinner w/ a chefwife and a boatcaptainwife at Pasquale's Rigoletto in the BRONX.


Tuesday, September 4, 2007

[cake] Batter Up!

So I think about the restaurant industry quite often and I also think of analogies quite often. (I think it's a teacher thing) Anyway, it came to me one night that the restaurant world is parallel to Major League Baseball. Hear me out.

In the MLB you have two leagues: National and American and in the culinary world you've got your East and West coast restaurants. Each team is an actual restaurant (front and back of the house) and guess who the players are? You got it: the chefs. The big time players like your A Rods and your Barry Bonds are the executive chefs and sous chefs. The other not so popular players are the line cooks. They got a couple more season-ings to go before they gain the rep as the big timers.
And all the cooks and chefs want the same thing: their own baseball cards worth top dollar. If the chefs can make it to a baseball card worth mucho $$ then other owners will scout them out for a trade to a better team, offer them more money and make their baseball cards (aka repertoire) worth more. And the stats of each players are like the stars each restaurant has that the chefs and cooks all take claim in earning. The better your stats the better your restaurant. Right?

With me so far?

Then of course there are the coaches, the ones who teach and inspire and in the culinary world-that's the owner of the restaurant. The one who wants things done his way- and he's earned it. He has put in his time as a line cook running all the bases and earning the appropriate stats. The owners of the teams would be equated to the investors. They have all the $$$, but hardly any of the glory (or talent for that matter).

And what is a baseball game without a stadium? The stadium you see is the actual physical restaurant building. Wrigley field, and Yankee Stadium would be compared with Jean Georges and The French Laundry. The parking attendant tells you where to park your car, just like the hostess tells you which booth to park your a$$ in. Inside the stadium you need beer first so you you buy a cold one from the bartender behind the counter. And you cannot complete a true baseball game without a hot dog and peanuts-and who better to deliver to you than your server? The ones enjoying the game,the true fans, the ones oohing and ahing all over the place, the ones paying top dollar to see the chef-players perform, those are the restaurant patrons.

Now there is one more comparison I have to make. The personal trainers. They make sure the players are able to play at their best abilities, they save the players when they get a boo boo, they make suggestions and they have a close personal relationship with the players. Those would obviously be the chefswives. Yes, ladies we are the personal trainers in the world of chef-baseball. We heal them when they cry, we medicate their cuts, soothe their burns and get them in the best condition to play nine innings just to come home and do it all over again.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

That Must Be So Nice!

I'm sorry that I have not written recently. (However sad, but true I have to say that my therapist would be upset with me for opening this up with an apology, but there it is and there it stays)Back to the matter at hand.

Have you other chefswives noticed that when you tell people what your husband does their reaction is surprising and silly? I have. The moment that I tell people my husband is a chef I brace myself for the barrage of comment that follow.

For Example:
Them: "What does your husband do?"

Me: "He's a chef"

Them: "...But you're so skinny!....Oh really?....That must be so nice! ....Does he cook for a lot?....Wow!....I wish I could get my husband to cook....Does he criticize your food?....And he works in NY so he must work at a *fancy* restaurant...etc. "

And my reaction is always the same: a half-hearted smile and sigh that comes out sounding like, " Yes, I suppose." But what is the media telling to the general public about chefs? People have this image of a handsome man in sharp whites and a 12 inch toque who rubs elbows with rich *fancy* people in a white tablecloth clad *fancy* restaurant who comes home to cook me a five course menu for dinner of quail and egg caviar. That my friends, is an anti-reality. Non existent. It never will.

Not only do others suggest such ridiculous falsities but its also the lack of excitement for your own career that stings. Second grade teachers are interesting people too.