Variety’s sister pub (although, who knows? Maybe not for long!) Restaurants & Institutions magazine has announced the six recipients of its 38th annual Ivy Awards, a kind of foodservice-industry Oscar.
The winners range from the sublime to the… well, you’ll see: Alinea (Chicago), Bartolotta Ristorante di Mare (Las Vegas), Hotel Healdsburg/Dry Creek Kitchen (Healdsburg, Calif.), Per Se (New York) — and Presbyterian Hospital of Plano (Plano, Texas) and the University of Massachusetts (Amherst, Mass.)
A suburban Dallas hospital and the UMass dining halls? I asked R&I editor in chief Scott Hume to s’plain.
"R&I covers the whole foodservice industry, so noncommercial operators can be Ivy winners as well," he emailed. "UMass has a dining program that would put a lot of restaurants’ quality and variety standards to shame. Similarly, Presbyterian Hospital of Plano pioneered the idea of healthcare room service. Its food, too, is seasonal, fresh and impressive."
I was skeptical; wrote Hume, "A Presbyterian Hospital of Plano recipe that won a culinary competition among hospitals was grilled beef tenders with pomegranate barbecue sauce, mango relish, Southwestern spring rolls and steamed asparagus. I’d order that."
Not sure that I would — spring-roll fusions make me nervous — but point taken.