I was invited to this event at Universal Studios Backlot on Saturday night - lotsa famous chefs from around the country and a few average wineries.
It was crowded and fun. A few notes:
Blue Ginger - Celebrity Chef Ming Tsai is a really big guy- 6'4" or so. My wife was starstruck. The food, a spring roll with some asian slaw was average fusion cuisine.
Alan Wong: A highlight. A shrimp on top of a piece of soy braised beef. Superb. Will definitely visit if I'm ever in Honolulu
Olives: Todd English may be good looking, but the food tasted like overproduced and overpriced Middle Eastern chow - hummus, chickpeas, babaganush, cuke salad etc...Never been to an Olives, but based on this spread, no need to. Go to Marouch instead.
Hitching Post - great fries and meat as usual.
Matsuhisa - people were lined up for...spicy tuna rolls? not really indicative of what the restaurant does, they were no better than any good sushi joint.
Patina - nice seared scallop, excellent chocolate desert.
American Place - boring seared tuna on a bed of mixed greens. Fine, but dull
Craft - tasty waygu skirt steak on top of heirloom tomatoes. Simple and good. Like the kind of food you cook at home. Chef (Tom) seemed like a good guy.
Campinile - only tried desert, a churro covered in chocoate fudge, ice cream and walnuts. I never enjoyed Silverton's deserts, and still don't.
Wolfgang Pucks restaurants - As he was host, ALL of restaurants had booths. None were memorable.
There were more, but I can't remember off hand.