Apropos nothing we can think of, Robert Sietsema today presents his ranked list of "New York City's 17 Greatest Chefs." (Seventeen is, after all, a nice round number.) The critic, notorious for yak-ball sabbaticals and far-flung journeys throughout the city to track down entrees like lamb-face salad, has settled on a mix of cult-favorite toques (Pasternack, Anita Lo, Peter Hoffman) and the completely expected (Samuelsson, Vongerichten). But who's missing?
Thomas Keller seems too inalienably Californian to rank, Sietsema says, and Tom Colicchio is just too damned telegenic. Batali doesn't get Chew-ed out for the same reasons, however, and takes the top spot, despite his recent commandeering of that brand-new daytime talk show. Mario gets the top spot, writes Sietsema, "for regaling us with organs, mining for deep flavors in the Italian canon, infusing his every dish with background narrative." Very true, but where's Michael White? Georges Mendes? Paul Liebrandt? Head over here and check out the whole thing, and let us know who should be on that list, or off it. And when's somebody going to do a list of worst chefs?