Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles And what's our plan for pacing? I'm just curious. Because I truly- I do think we need to pace tonight. That's true. Because usually when we go out, it's basically a lot of drinking. No eating. Right. And then eventually we eat. That's kind of similar to what's going to happen tonight. I mean holy shit. You think I've done that before. I did not think that was going to be a whole fucking bottle. I'm Gail Simmons, special projects director at Food Lion magazine, judge on Bravo's Top Chef. It was a long road to get here and it actually started 20 years ago discovering that I wanted to work in the food industry. I moved to New York and I went to culinary school and when I felt like I had gotten some good experience I left the kitchen and went to work for Jeffrey Steingarten, who is the food critic at Vogue magazine. It was through Jeffrey that I came to know so many of the most talented chefs and food people around the country, because he worked with them on so many different projects. And one of the people I came to know was Daniel Boulud. So Danielle only had three restaurants at the time, but was opening many more around the country, writing books, had tons of events, and his marketing director needed some help, so he offered me the job. It wasn't the job I anticipated taking, because I thought I was just gonna go be a food writer. When Daniel Boulud offers you a job, you take the job. >From working at Danielle for three years, I went to go work at Food and Wine Magazine. And about a year into the job, Bravo came to Food and Wine to ask them if they'd help partner on a food show and Food and Wine sent me on a screen test. To see if this was something we could all do together, and Bravo chose me. Three weeks later, I was shooting Top Chef, and I guess the rest is history. I think one of the most rewarding things about Top Chef, is that after 13 seasons, we can quantify how successful the winners have been, and several of the other contestants, too. There were something like over 100 restaurants that have opened in America, since we started the show that are from contestants and you still can't deny how much of an impact this show and it's chefs have had on our industry. I met two of my closest girlfriends at the Food and Wine Magazine offices in town, at the iconic Time and Life building. The girls who came along with me for the night were Nilou Motamed and Sarah Rosenberg. Who are these two people? That the producer's chose to stand in as my friends. She doesn't have any friends. We're doing well with the script though. Natural. Tell me more about your self. The three of us get together a lot. We sort of have a big crew of friends that love to eat and drink, love to travel. No one will be safe. And he has done it before. So he knows. Okay, where are we going, Gail? Where are we heading? Oh we're going to Navy. Tell us a little bit more about. Oh right. She's posting. No I'm getting out. I'm done. What's your Instagram strategy? Shut up. All right we're going to Navy. Camille Becerra's restaurant in SoHo. Camille was on the third season of Top Chef, she was a contestant and she did well but not great in the season. I could tell she was a great cook and she's just a great person and we stayed in touch after the season and she is so creative, and she has done so well, and Navy is such a cool little spot. I chose to go to Navy specifically, because I think it's such a hidden gem in New York City. It really is one of those places that I can eat several times a week. It's totally unfussy. The mood of the room is so comfortable and organic. I like the way it smells a little smokey. It does smell good in here. It's just, isn't it a cool, pretty little situation? It's really sexy because you could totally have an affair here Noted, noted. What are you? What do you think we should do because we're gonna just get a few things because we're like moving Yeah. It's a progressive. Around a bit. Of course. So why don't you just do like, Whatever you think. Little apps, right? I would describe Camille's food as being super seasonal. Simple. Very clean. Bright flavors. She loves to play with texture. We started with a scallop svechice which had tons of lime, lots of herbs and avocado. Really good. The bavitas actually. The bavitas are the shit. Make it. Super crunchy. She knows what she's doing. She's no dumb dumb. I absolutely loved the scallops svechice was a great way to start our night. A fresh clean bite at the beginning of what was gonna be a very long night ahead of us. You can just pick it up and whenever you want. We also had her liver toast, which she shaves chocolate onto. You think that's gonna have a strange, sweet effect, but it's a bittersweet chocolate that really goes well with the richness of the liver. We had a few salads that I loved especially this Asian pear and radish salad. That I expected to be chunky and crunchy, but she shaved the radish and the Asian pear so thinly in rounds, on the mandolin, and then dressed it with a beautiful olive oil and some, what she called a citronet. Which, she actually described as a sweet lemonade vinaigrette that really brought the dish together. It was a bit of a revelation. It's just like fresh and. She's like, she gets it. You know what I mean? Bye, thanks for visiting. Thank you for having us. We'll see you soon. Bye. >From there we walked to ZZ's Clam Bar. ZZ's Clam Bar is run by I have three good friends of mine, Rich Tarrizzi, Mario Carbone, and Geoffrey Zalazneck. It's a really special, kind of magical cocktail place. The cocktail director, mixologist, Thomas, is a total character. He's so talented. They're usually not open on Mondays, but we went anyway. It was amazing because we got to saddle up to that beautiful marble bar. We should not be sitting, here this is not usually how we sit. We're blocking the view, we're distracting poor Thomas from his work. But, tonight's a special night. So this is cilantro and jalapeno juice tequila. That's my jam. Yeah with house made grenadine. That's so good. That's unbelievable. My whole face is on fire. It's not, it's not not spicy. Pass that baby over here. It's not not spicy. It's bananas. The food is absolutely beautiful here, but you go for the cocktails. You can not believe how stunning and creative and really insane these cocktails are. Thomas, is a mad scientist, he's a genius. We went in thinking we would try one or two cocktails. Maybe among the three of us, we'd have five to get a feel for how awesome they are. But of course we ended up drinking eight, eight cocktails at that bar. So Thomas, would you say the recipe for a really sloppy night is to have eight different cocktails right in a row? Correct. Yeah, it depends on what kind of champ you are, I think. I mean I can do eight cocktails. Wow. That's ugly. Mm. So the next one I'm making for you is the pistachio. I absolutely went crazy for this pistachio cocktail that had kumquats on top of it. Another amazing combination. Oh, my God. This is like an Italian rainbow cookie. So good. It's like a dessert. We also ate some amazing things at ZZ's. We had these beautiful, perfect little Japanese sardines with blood orange and other citrus. We had this fantastic scallop dish. Live scallop that had been thinly sliced and then drizzled with brown butter. And we had some lobster svechice Since you've worked at a lot of bars in your history in San Francisco what's the worst and best pickup line you've ever heard? It was a guy talking to a girl. And it was something like are you Mumford? Because I wanna make your sons. Oh. But why? It was so bad, like she was so confused. I don't even know if she knew who the band was. Right. Oh. Anyway, the band sucks too, so. Yeah, whole thing. But we do have to leave you, don't you think? Thomas, thank you. Any time. Thank you for having us. Wait, with or without the stir. That was appropriate, actually, just make it like that. It feels good. We're making a drink right now. >From there we headed to Miss Lily's 7A. Are you sober, Alana, to be driving right now? Because I am not. Listen, Alana, I know you sucked down Pistachio I downed it. I downed it. I downed the pistachio ladies. Hey ladies, where we going next? That's the worst, that the worst. Ladies, no it like. Like the Liza Minnelli coming out. Hey ladies, where we coming next? We're going. Where are we going?