They say that asking a chef to choose favorites among his dishes is like asking him to choose between his children, but when I'm staring at a menu, I always wonder what the chef would tell me to order. We recently sat down with Chef Michael Tusk of Cotogna in San Francisco (and its upscale sister restaurant, Quince) to ask for tips: which dishes is he loving right now?
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Last Last Sunday, on the lawn of Culver Studios, the chef-tacular second annual L.A. Loves Alex's Lemonade benefit was held for pediatric cancer research. Deeply moved by Alex's story, Los Angeles chefs Suzanne Goin(AOC, Lucques, Tavern) and husband David Lentz (The Hungry Cat), plus Goin's business partner Caroline Styne, have collected an astonishing group of chefs, mixologists and vintners. Everyone came out to lend a hand, a grill and a copious amount of wine and whisky to support the cause.
Cotogna opened to a great deal of fanfare this past November. It's no wonder—as the less buttoned-down offshoot of Michelin-starred Quince, Cotogna promised the opportunity to sample some of Chef Michael Tusk's Italian cooking at a manageable price. If a chef with Tusk's accolades is going to try his hand at pizza, I'm inclined to check it out. If he's pushing the boundaries of pizza toppings to include pies with sea urchin, then he definitely has my attention.