Tickets to See Nathan at the JBF Include a Signed Copy of MC!

The James Beard Foundation in New York City is hosting a special event featuring Modernist Cuisine author Nathan Myhrvold on Wednesday, November 16, at 6:30 p.m. A ticket admits both you and a guest to a champagne reception with Dr. Myhrvold at the Beard House, a presentation on the revolution underway in the culinary arts, and a signed copy of the six-volume book and display case, including shipping to your home. A portion of the $650 all-inclusive ticket price will benefit the James Beard Foundation.

For tickets and more information, call 212.627.2308 or click here.

Chris Young to Speak at Chicago Ideas Week

MC coauthor Chris Young will speak at Chicago Ideas Week about a topic we have a lot of ideas about: food. Even more fittingly, he will be presenting the Modernist Cuisine perspective at Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art. Chris will discuss how food “shapes our cities, our culture, and our bodies.” The line-up of speakers includes:

  • Colin Archipley: Co-Owner & CEO, Archi’s Acres
  • Karen Archipley: Co-Owner & Marketing Director, Archi’s Acres
  • Faith D’Aluisio: Former Award-Winning Television News Producer
  • Peter Menzel: Photojournalist, What I Eat: Around the World in 80 Diets
  • Kevin Pang: Reporter, Chicago Tribune
  • Ryan Poli: Executive Chef/Partner, Tavernita
  • Chris Young: Chef-Scientist & Coauthor, Modernist Cuisine

The event is Saturday, October 15, 2011, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Click here for tickets and more information.

For information about other MC events and appearances by the authors, head over to our events page.

Astor Center Presents Dr. Nathan Myhrvold

Astor Center of New York City will present an evening with Nathan Myhrvold on Thursday, November 17, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.:

Join Nathan Myhrvold at Astor Center to learn more about the journey of discovery behind the project, from the new techniques to the cutting-edge photography, the scientific and mathematical modeling used, and what the team envisions for the kitchens and restaurants of the future.

Nathan during his March talk with Padma Lakshmi at the New York Academy of Sciences

Tickets can be purchased in advance for $25. For tickets and more information, click here.

Maxime Will Teach Modernist Cooking at Sur La Table

Maxime tossing pad thai

Maxime Bilet, coauthor of Modernist Cuisine, will team up with the elite national cooking store Sur La Table for a one-day class. Max will present cooking demonstrations of the following dishes from MC:

  • Extracted Berry Juice Soda
  • Pressure-Cooked Carrot Soup with Coconut Cream
  • Brined and Slow-Poached Wild Salmon
  • Seared Sous Vide Steak with Creamed Spinach
  • Lemon Curd with Sliced Citrus

The class will be held on Wednesday, September 28, 2011, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. at Sur La Table in Kirkland, Washington. Tickets are $95 and can be purchased through Sur La Table. For tickets and more information, click here.

Ryan Matthew Smith to Teach at SAM

Join Ryan Matthew Smith, lead photographer for Modernist Cuisine, for a hands-on food photography workshop on Sept. 18 at TASTE restaurant at the Seattle Art Museum in downtown Seattle. Ryan will explain the lighting techniques used during the making of Modernist Cuisine, as well as advanced Photoshop editing steps to make your images pop.


    An introduction to Ryan’s food photography

  • Demos of strobe light techniques used in Modernist Cuisine
  • Lunch provided by TASTE restaurant
  • Hands-on action shooting workshop. Attendees will learn to shoot food in motion!
  • Photoshop Lesson 1: Curves–The nearly everything tool
  • Photoshop Lesson 2: Layer masking techniques–How to localize your adjustments
  • Photoshop Lesson 3: Making a single image from multiple captures
  • Q&A session
  • Student portfolio critique (optional)

A digital SLR camera and previous Photoshop experience is recommended but not required. If you have a DSLR, please bring it for the hands-on shooting workshop. If not, a loaner camera will be available. You will have the opportunity to work with high-end Broncolor lighting equipment and also experiment with budget-friendly AlienBees strobes. But the lessons you’ll learn will enhance your food photography skills regardless of the equipment you use at home. Your ticket price includes a lunch provided by TASTE restaurant. Confirmed attendees will be allowed to upload samples of previous work into a Flickr pool for the student portfolio critique at the end of the workshop.

Sunday, September 18
10:00 AM – 4:30 PM
TASTE restaurant at SAM
1300 First Avenue
Seattle, WA 98101
United States

Space is limited to 12 students, so order your ticket soon!

Ticket site: Brown Paper Bag Tickets

See Maxime at the Epicurean Classic in Traverse City

Modernist Cuisine coauthor Maxime Bilet will be making an appearance at this year’s Epicurean Classic in Traverse City, Michigan. As is EC’s tradition, Maxime will be cooking up a storm at La Becasse on the evening of Friday, September 9. (For reservations, call 231.334.3944.) Max will also give a talk the following day on Modernist techniques for home cooking.

The Epicurean Classic runs September 8-11, 2011. For tickets, directions, and a complete schedule, visit

Nathan’s Naan

On Monday evening, a couple dozen of us in the Seattle area who worked on Modernist Cuisine went out to dinner at Naan-n-Curry in Renton, Washington. It was a reunion of sorts, and great to see everyone who labored over the book.

The restaurant’s owner, Majid Janjua, invited Nathan back to the kitchen to try his hand at making the eponymous naan in a tan door. As always, Nathan was excited by the challenge, and ready to jump into action.

Majid’s son, Shan, demonstrated how to knead the dough and how to use the tan door. Nathan was so thrilled with the process that he said he wants to get a tan door for The Cooking Lab. Two, actually: one to use, and another to cut in half!

A busy restaurant kitchen waits for no man. When some shouted, “Naan for table four!” Nathan smoothly kept kneading his naan with his left hand and grabbed up a piping hot basket of naan with his right, giving it to me through the kitchen window for the server. “Naan for table four!” he echoed, barely even glancing up.

Even though I’ve worked with Nathan for three years, his tenacity continues to surprise me. When the naan was done, he reached right into the tan door without the slightest flinch to get it. Shan warned him that his arm hair would get singed, but something like that would never deter Nathan.

“It reminded me of taking pictures of volcanoes in Hawai’i,” Nathan said. “The tan door is kind of like a skylight, which is a hole in the cooled crust through which you can see a river of molten lava flowing underneath. You can go at it from the side, but you wouldn’t want to look directly down into it from right above.”

The naan was delicious, and the evening was a successful celebration of everyone’s great effort in making Modernist Cuisine. It was only appropriate that cooking and good food were at the heart of it all.

An Exhibit of Photography from Modernist Cuisine

The first public exhibition of photography from Modernist Cuisine is open through 14 August in Hong Kong. Sixteen images from the book, printed in large format, are on display on Chater Bridge and East Bridge, Central. For a map and contact information, see the write-up at CNN Go.

Accompanying the exhibition is the “Taste Matters New Recipe” Competition. Create your own recipe featuring one of the ingredients on display in the exhibition. Chefs from several of Central’s restaurants will select winning dishes in each of the 10 ingredient categories. The chefs will then reinterpret the winning recipes and serve the resulting dishes in their restaurants for one month. All winners will also receive HK$10,000 worth of gift certificates. For more details on how to participate, see the competition website.

See Nathan’s Talk at Microsoft Research

Last month, Modernist Cuisine author Nathan Myhrvold gave an hour-long presentation and Q&A session at Microsoft Research in Bellevue, Wash. In the presentation, he gives a quick tour of the massive book, talks a bit about how it was made, and focuses on some of the more technical aspects of this kind of cooking. To see the talk, use the embedded Silverlight player below, or visit the page at the Microsoft Research site for a rich-interface version.

Get Microsoft Silverlight

See Nathan in Toronto This Autumn

On November 20, the cookbook store in Toronto will host a special event for Modernist Cuisine. Author Nathan Myhrvold will be giving a public presentation on the book and will be available to answer questions from attendees. All previous Modernist Cuisine events have sold out well in advance, so sign up early if you want to attend. For tickets, directions, and more information, call 800.268.6018 (416.920.2665 in Toronto), or email