The Most Influential Chefs in the Bay Area (and Perhaps the Country)


From left: Alice Waters, Tony Gulisano, Charles Phan, Thomas Keller, Paula LeDuc. Photographs from the San Francisco Chronicle

Michael Bauer, the San Francisco Chronicle's food critic, kicks off an informative series in today's paper:

Many national dining trends have their roots here, and it's where dedicated food lovers and chefs from around the country come to play and get inspired. Great cooks are everywhere - at a neighborhood bar, in a modest storefront restaurant and at haute cuisine white-tablecloth venues. But the Bay Area's visionary chefs are more than great cooks; they are people who have made Northern California an epicurean epicenter. Today and in the next two Food sections, I'll profile 20 of these innovators who have helped change the way we eat.

Today: Alice Waters, Tony Gulisano, Paula LeDuc, Thomas Keller, Cindy Pawlcyn, Craig Stoll, Emily Luchetti, Charles Phan, Jeremy Fox, and Gerald Hirigoyen. Gulisano, LeDuc and Fox are probably least known outside the Bay Area.

"Profile" is reaching a bit. Each of the ten chefs above gets a single hefty paragraph of copy. The piece originally appeared in the print version, which might explain the brevity. Still, it's nice to see who Bauer deems important and influential enough to name-check. Five more visionaries will appear next week and the week after.