Award-winning hospital dining

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.)

Presbyterian_hospital_of_plano_aeri
The Presbyterian Hospital of Plano: Food worth getting sick for?

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.

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