GARDEN OF EATIN: There are worse ways to go. On Thursday night, the world's top chefs gathered at Le Bernardin for a meal to end all meals. It was in celebration of Melanie Dunea's new book "My Last Supper," which features chef's fantasies of just that and, well, if this were to be their last supper, it was well worth it.
As guests arrived at the Midtown Manhattan restaurant, they were directed toward the service entrance, snaking through the bowels of the eatery. "You get to see how we see it every day," explained one of what seemed like infinite staff members in attendance. "But without the Champagne." Indeed, once partygoers made it to the main dining room, they realized just how much Champagne there was: two bottles of Moët & Chandon for every person. Which was probably a safe buy, considering the reputation for imbibing that some of the chefs in the room employ.
While Eric Ripert slaved away in the kitchen, his colleagues including Anthony Bourdain, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, April Bloomfield, Lidia Bastianich, Fergus Henderson, Anita Lo, Scott Conant, Tom Aikens, Jonathan Waxman and Martha Stewart hungrily watched as Puerto Rican chefs, flown in specially for the occasion, indelicately carved a roast pig. And then everyone sat for a decadent six-course meal that lasted five hours (Daniel Boulud, among others, snuck into the kitchen between courses for tequila shots and foie gras foam because, clearly, the main meal wasn't decadent enough).