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Top Chefs From New York City's Finest Restaurants
to Cater the 40th Annual Grammy Awards Celebration
to Be Held at the Sheraton New York

NEW YORK--Feb. 2, 1998--Top celebrity chefs from some of New York City's finest restaurants will provide their delicacies at this year's Grammy(R) Celebration to be held at The Sheraton New York following the 40th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony at Radio City Music Hall on Wednesday, Feb. 25, it was announced today by Michael Greene, President/CEO of the National Academy of Recording Arts Sciences. These celebrated chefs will recreate an atmosphere similar to their restaurants to accommodate the 3,000 plus party guests at the Grammy Awards after-party hosted by Sheraton's executive chef Ron Roccasecca. Selected chefs and restaurants for this year's event include: Mario Batali of
PO'; Frank Deletrain of Patroon; Bobby Flay of Bolo and Mesa Grill; Patrick Nuti of Tuscan Square; Don Pintabona of Tribeca Grill; Eric Ripert of Le Bernardin; Sylvia Woods of Sylvia's and Masaaki Uehara of Sushisay. "We thank all of these talented chefs for helping create this international taste of the world for our celebration and Tim Zagat for his assistance with securing this all-star line-up," comments Greene.

Following is background information on each of the chefs and restaurants involved in this year's Grammy celebration:

BOLO MESA GRILL -- As executive chef and co-owner of both Bolo and Mesa Grill restaurants, Bobby Flay puts a new colorful twist on Southwestern cuisine. At Bolo, Flay explores contemporary Spanish cuisine in a whimsical and vivacious setting, fusing colors, cultures, flavors and fun. Flay's innovative menu at Bolo dazzles adventurous palates with dishes including Baked Eggplant and Manchego Cheese Salad with Fresh Oregano Balsamic Vinegar Glaze and Curried Shellfish Chicken Paella for Two. Bolo was awarded two stars by the New York Times in 1994 and continues to be voted the top Spanish restaurant in New York City by the Zagat Survey. Amidst a brightly colored decor and a festive crowd at Mesa Grill, patrons discover Flay's vibrant Southwestern-inspired cuisine, which has been dazzling customers since the restaurant opened in 1991.

In the six years since its opening, Flay's Mesa Grill has earned much critical acclaim, including Gael Greene's choice for the best restaurant in New York and a two-star review by Bryan Miller in the New York Times who said "the contemporary Southwestern fare surpasses anything of its kind elsewhere in New York." In addition, the Zagat Survey has voted Mesa Grill the number one American regional restaurant, as well as one of the top twenty restaurants in New York. In 1993 Flay received the James Beard Foundation's Rising Chef of the Year award. In 1994, Flay published his first book, Bold American Food (Warner Books), which won the 1995 IACP award for design. The success of Mesa Grill and Bolo has sealed Flay's reputation as a major New York chef.

LE BERNARDIN -- Chef Eric Ripert has been at Le Bernardin since 1991 and now co-owns the acclaimed New York City restaurant with Maguy Le Coze. Le Bernardin, named after the abbey next door on the Quai de la Tournelle, originally opened in Paris where it became immensely successful. In 1980 the restaurant moved to a larger location garnering two Michelin stars. Inspired by the triumph of Le Bernardin in Paris, Le Coze opened a Le Bernardin in New York in 1986 -- and set an unprecedented record: The New York Times bestowed four stars upon the restaurant just three months after its opening. The French seafood restaurant has proved holy ground for fish worshippers and is known for its flawless food and impeccable service. Today, Ripert working closely with Le Coze, a disciple and close friend, continues to uphold Le Bernardin's position as one of New York's premier restaurants.

PATROON -- Striking the right balance between creativity and tradition is the secret to Chef Frank Delatrain's menu at Patroon. Although the New York restaurant has been open for less than a year, Patroon has earned high praise for its elegant yet simple selections: New England clam chowder, roasted chicken, the hamburger and other classics are reinterpreted by Deletrain with a spirit and understanding of the contemporary palate. Delatrain's dedication to quality and simplicity dates back to his childhood in Paris, when he would help his mother and grandfather prepare apple tarts and crepes on Sunday afternoons and assist his father in preparing the family dinner. A family move to Italy proved to be an excellent opportunity for Deletrain to broaden his knowledge of classical European techniques. He enrolled in the culinary school at Recoaro Terme and spent his summers working in the hotels of Padua and Siena. After stints as a sous chef at the Sea Grill for five years and a position as chef saucier and later chef de cuisine at the Four Seasons, Deletrain has found his own kitchen at Patroon.

PO' -- Chef Mario Batali's signature dishes at PO' -- such as the delicate white bean bruschetta or the white bean ravioli anointed with a sauce of butter and balsamic vinegar; the simply grilled salmon with braised fennel, sweet garlic and blood orange rouille; and the braised stuffed oxtail with butternut squash, chilis and honey -- say much about the depth of the chef's cooking experience. "Batali makes things out of simple ingredients," states New York Newsday, explaining that there's always a steady crowd in PO's cozy, 34-seat dining room because "it's hard to find food this imaginative, flavorful and satisfying at any price."

Though Batali refers to his small, warmly personal Italian restaurant in Greenwich Village as "a simple trattoria," the critics highly praise Batali's fresh and distinctive Italian cuisine: "the care with which pastas are conceived extends to the rest of the restaurant," says the New York Times. Gourmet Magazine hails "the tempting array of antipasti on the bar" before moving on to describe some of PO's outstanding dishes like the "well-executed Tuscan pappardelle" or the "succulent osso buco with saffron scented orzo" followed by "assertively flavored desserts." Batali's newest role as a celebrity chef as host of Molto Mario on the Television Food Network reached more than 35 million homes nationwide.

SYLVIA'S -- The 35-year-old Harlem soul-food institution, crowned "The Queen of Soul Food" by New York Magazine, serves dishes of traditional Southern cuisine and is New York's most acclaimed African American dining establishment. What started as a dream and a one-room diner has grown into a multi-million dollar food-and-dining enterprise, owned and operated by Sylvia and Herbert Woods. The Harlem landmark has become a world-famous soul food haven to which food lovers, celebrities and politicians flock for the outstanding chicken and ribs, greens and beans -- and a bit of Southern hospitality. Sylvia's , which also carries a full line of soul food items available in local stores, is currently expanding its operations nationwide -- introducing its distinctly American cuisine to other major US cities including Atlanta, Washington, D.C.,
Philadelphia, New Orleans, Texas, Detroit and Los Angeles. Sylvia's head chef, her daughter, Bedalia Woods, honed her craft under the watchful eye of her mother and acquired the same flair for Southern cuisine that Sylvia made famous years earlier.

SUSHISAY -- Sushisay specializes in traditional Edo style sushi, Edo being the former name for Tokyo. This means using the best market ingredients available at all times, including the freshest fish. Sushisay's team of highly-skilled chefs, led by Head Chef Masaaki Uehara, a 25-year veteran, are true professionals who take pride in achieving a perfect balance of flavors to draw out the essence of each ingredient -- and in creating works of art with each dish they present. All of the sushi chefs have gone through the rigorous "Sushisay Method" of training in Tokyo under a team of sushi masters. You cannot get a more authentic Tokyo-style sushi dining experience anywhere else without hopping on a plane to Japan. Located in the heart of midtown Manhattan, Sushisay has a bright, clean interior typical of traditional Tokyo sushi establishments, with fresh flower arrangements to reflect the changing seasons. A private Japanese-style dining room constructed entirely of traditional materials such as tatami mats and Japanese cedar seating up to 8 guests is also available.

TUSCAN SQUARE -- The 120-seat restaurant at Tuscan Square is headed by Executive Chef Patrick Nuti, a Florence, Italy native who previously worked at Ristorante Nandia and the world-reknowned Bartolini Andrea and Il Cibreo. His menu offers classic casual Tuscan dishes for lunch and and dinner, including antipasti, soups and a farrotto of the day, plus main courses of chicken, veal, pork, beef and fish. Several authentic pasta selections and classic desserts are also available. Stepping into Tuscan Square is like stepping into the center of an authentic marketplace in a Sienese hill town on market day. There are simple foods impeccably prepared; objects crafted by hand with beauty as much in mind as functionality and a spirit of hospitality and conviviality. All of the merchandise at Tuscan Square was specially selected to truly reflect what is most appealing about Tuscany including authentic foods, home products and native fashions from this regions in Italy.

TRIBECA GRILL-- Since its inception in 1990, Chef Don Pintabona has been an integral part of the success behind the much acclaimed Tribeca Grill, a blockbuster restaurant housed within Robert DeNiro's Tribeca Film center in New York City. Pintabona's innovative blend of American fare is combined with international culinary influences from his travels throughout Europe and subsequently the Far East, where he began applying Asian techniques and spices to his classical style of cooking.

At Tribeca Grill, Pintabona's enticing menu emphasizes grilled and sauteed selections with cross cultural creative influences of many different cuisines. Owned by DeNiro, Drew Nieporent and celebrity investors, Tribeca Grill continues to win worldwide recognition for excellent cuisine and service. Pintabona has hosted many of New York's elite dinners, including Nelson Mandela's Apartheid Benefit Dinner; President Clinton's 1992 Fundraising Dinner and Julia Child's 80th Birthday Fundraiser among others. Pintabona's recipes and cooking tips have been featured in publications such as Food Wine, Gourmet, Bon Appetite, New York Magazine and the New York Times.

Chef Ron Roccasecca, director of culinary services for the Sheraton New York Hotel Towers and the Sheraton Manhattan Hotel since 1995, will again serve as host chef responsible for coordinating the additional 9 celebrity chefs and restaurants for the Grammy Celebration. Roccasecca joined The Sheraton New York in 1989 where he has held title of sous chef, restaurant chef and executive sous chef. A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America in New York City, Roccasecca began his culinary career in the early 80s with a number of fine dining establishments and hotels in the greater New York City area. In his current role as Director of Culinary Services at the Sheraton New York and Sheraton Manhattan hotels, Chef Ron is responsible for a multi-million dollar food beverage operation, including all catered events and the hotel's three restaurants -- Streeter's New York Cafe, Hudson's Sports Bar Grill and Russo's Steak and Pasta.

Maureen O'Connor/Karen Sundell, 310/201-8867

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