Festival

Sundance Film Festival

2012

Boobs and Bonito Tartar

As every veteran knows, the Festival attracts all sorts–including genre of people who are not part of the film business but who thirst for a taste of Hollywood glamour.

Such people seemed to be flocking to Chefdance, an annual series of dinners intended by founder Kenny Griswold to create “a dining experience that would match the film experience during the Festival.” Griswold imports a number of renowned chefs to create leisurely meals enjoyed by dozens of people seated along long, white-linen-draped tables.

When I arrived, I was introduced to hostess Bethenny Frankel, a friendly woman in a form-fitting dress that appeared to be made of leather. She told me has a book called Naturally Thin. Having learned this, I waited outside the dining room with other guests. I couldn’t help but notice that many of these guests weren’t wearing the casual and decidedly unglamourous cold-weather wear that is the uniform of most film-industry professionals while at the Festival. There were three women in floor-length fur coats–one brown, one black, one white (the coats, I mean, not the women). One wore boats with rhinestones and tassles. When I got my table assignment, I found that the three coats were seated with me. They were from Miami.

As Bethenny walked past our table, the Miami squad called out her name. They were excited; they were big fans. Turns out she’s a star of “The Real Housewives of New York City.”

Here was the menu from chef Gene Kato of the restaurant Japonais, of Chicago, New York and Las
Vegas:

First course: Miso marinated bonito tartar and diakon cucumber salad.

Second course: Tuna Flatbread

Third course: Duet of Lamb (Chef Kato’s 14 spiced lamb t-bone and five spiced game bird sausage)

Fourth course: Fromage blanc served with yuzu caviar

There was lots bared cleavage in the room. Quite a lot of artificially enhanced cleavage.

At my table, there was another sensation after a “star” from “Deal or No Deal” was spotted in the crowd.

I implored myself not to be a snob.

I ate the miso marinated bonito tartar and went out into the dark night.