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James Beard Awards: Alinea is tops for service

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Story and photos by guest blogger and New York writer Seanan Forbes:

IMG_0889-Achatz.jpg

Standing on Lincoln Center's plaza, well-earned glasses of Champagne in hand, Alinea's dapper crew wears their latest honors well. Alinea, 1723 N. Halsted, took outstanding service - a thing that gives Grant Achatz clear pleasure. Achatz is no stranger to the James Beard Awards, but this time's different.

"It's a great achievement for the front of the house," Achatz says. "Joe [Catterson] and Craig [Sindelar] have been with us since day one - before day one. Joe . . . months before the restaurant opened, helping us plan it and lay it out. He's such a great, detail-oriented service person. More than that, he really makes the restaurant run."

Catterson is Alinea's general manager and wine director; Sindelar's the head sommelier. There are separate roles in the restaurant, but looking at Alinea's winners, it's apparent that this is a team.

Achatz is beaming. "For these guys to get that recognition, it's great." He pauses for half a second and adds, "I love it."

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Janet Rausa Fuller

Sun-Times Food editor Janet Rausa Fuller is always thinking about her next meal.

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This page contains a single entry by Janet Rausa Fuller published on May 3, 2010 7:54 PM.

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James Beard Awards: Salpicon at the gala is the next entry in this blog.

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