The Future's So Bright, I Gotta Wear Shades

(Click the photo for a larger view.)

It's a good time to be dining out in the Washington area, thanks to a cadre of up-and-coming talent. Meet the Washington area's culinary rising stars, annointed recently by, an online culinary magazine.

Pictured above, they are (front row, from left): Tony Conte of The Oval Room, sommelier Nadine Brown of Charlie Palmer Steak, Tony Chittum of Dish and Notti Bianche, pastry chef Heather Chittum of Dish and Notti Bianche, bar chef and sommelier Todd Thrasher of Restaurant Eve and PX, Bart Vandaele of Belga Café, Katsuya Fukushima of Café Atlantico, (back row) host chef Arnel Esposa of Palette, Eric Ziebold of CityZen, Barton Seaver of Café Saint Ex and Bar Pilar, pastry chef Hichem Lahreche of Kinkead’s (standing), pastry chef Tom Wellings of Maestro, RJ Cooper of Vidalia, Cathal Armstrong of Restaurant Eve and Noriaki Yasutake of Perry’s.

You can literally meet the rising stars Dec. 13 at the StarChefs Rising Stars Revue. From 7 to 9:30 p.m., guests will have the opportunity to taste dishes from all of the honored chefs (check out the menu). Tickets for the dine-around event, held at the National Housing Center at 1201 15th St. NW, are $95 and are available here. The event will benefit a worthy cause, DC Central Kitchen.

According to, the "revue is a traveling series of tasting events showcasing chefs from around the country who are coming into their own as young leaders in the culinary field." The rising stars were nominated by an advisory board made up of more than 20 of the country's top chefs including Daniel Boulud, Norman Van Aken, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Todd English, Todd Gray, Ken Oringer, Marcus Samuelsson and Bobby Flay.’s editorial team made the final choices based on in-person tastings and interviews.

Congrats to all those being recognized!

(Photo by Len DePas.)