Members of the Fat family have just returned home to Sacramento from New York, where Frank Fat's was honored Monday night with a James Beard Award for "America's Classics." Winning this award is the restaurant equivalent of the "lifetime achievement" Academy Award, which was bestowed at a black tie and red carpet gala at Avery Fisher Hall. Out of 28,000 nominees, only five American restaurants were selected for this award, and Frank Fat's was the only honoree from California.
A media luncheon was held today to show off some of the dishes which have made Frank Fat's a Sacramento food institution for 74 years. Among those spinning the Lazy Susan and chomping on honey walnut prawns, New York steak and banana cream pie were Tina Macuha and Courtney Dempsey of "Good Day Sacramento," KFBK's Kitty O'Neal and some of Sacramento's prominent food bloggers: Sarah "Undercover Caterer" Singleton, Kristy "Cavegrrl" DeVaney and Catherine "Munchie Musings" Enfield.
Also in the house was Orangevale's Hank Shaw, whose Hunter Angler Gardener Cook earned best blog honors at this year's James Beard Awards. We were also happy to see Michael Tuohy, former executive chef of Grange, who is currently living in Napa but planning a move back to Sacramento shortly. (We'll have more on this soon).
We all emerged from this luncheon fairly stuffed, with "char siu sliders" kicking off the meal and Shaw proclaiming these savory pork buns would be a perfect baseball food at Raley Field. "Appetizers" seconds that motion. You can sample all these foods as well, with Frank Fat's launching a prix fixe "America's Classics" menu which runs from Monday through May 31. The $29.95 per person menu includes such options as New York steak, bacon wrapped scallops, Chinese broccoli and that famous banana cream pie.
Kevin Fat, who arrived from New York in the wee hours of Wednesday morning, was still savoring in the family's James Beard Award. He said the family did not nominate itself, and were fairly blown away by the whole affair.
"We had no idea this was coming," said Fat. "We represent Sacramento and we're proud to represent Sacramento. We have something good here."
FROM THE BEE: