My baker friend John reports that Top Chef Chicago finalist Stephanie Izard was spotted last Wednesday browsing the treats at Sweet Mandy B's on Racine & Webster in Chicago. Although John was downstairs at the time, tending to the ovens, his co-workers report that she ultimately settled on a chocolate chip cookie. Delish.
Steph's also going plate-to-plate with former Shawn McClain protege Nick LaCasse this Sunday, June 15, at the Drawing Room at Le Passage. The dinner sold out nearly instantly, so the organizers added a VIP post-dinner reception featuring a meet & greet with Steph and complementary seasonal cocktails created by her chefness. As was pointed out on Chicagoist, this event partly overlaps with the annual Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, where the Top Chef winner is to have a showcase, so that may mean trouble for Steph on Wednesday. But as the Le Passage event is on a Sunday night, and looks to have been scheduled after the taping of the finale, it's very feasible that she's doing both in the same weekend. The Food & Wine Classic schedule lists a presentation on Saturday at 10:30am by Padma and Tom, titled "In the Kitchen With Top Chef". It says Tom and Padma will be giving cooking demonstrations... but... is it all a clever ruse??
I guess we'll find out on Wed!