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Haute Event: Mario Batali Serves Up Pizzas at the Venetian for Winter in Venice

Mario Batali poses in his orange Crocs on the ice skating rink in front of the Venetian.

As part of the Winter in Venice celebrations at the Venetian and the Palazzo, world-renowned chef Mario Batali put together a live cooking demo Friday outside the Venetian by the outdoor gondolas. Joking that his signature orange Crocs can’t ever come off, Batali stepped on to the ice skating rink and posed for photos with the holiday characters and guests before heading over to the wood burning oven situated on the sidewalk.

The large crowd gathered and enjoyed slices of his signature pizza while he gave his cooking tips, including one that dough should be slowly stretched instead of tossed. Executive chef Zach Allen from Batali’s restaurants Otto Enoteca Pizzeria, B&B Ristorante and Carnevino Italian Steakhouse was also on hand to help Batali prepare the pizza and interact with the crowd. Batali also signed copies of his cookbook, “Molto Batali: Simple Family Meals from My Home to Yours,” for lucky meet and greet winners.

Batali told the audience, “The quality of your meal is decided when you leave the store and pack your groceries in the back of the car. Fundamentally what distinguishes really great Italian food from mediocre food is the quality of the ingredients. Find stores that will let you taste the salt, the oil and the tomatoes so you can find the food that best suits your particular palate.”

Click on the photos below to enlarge.

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New York February / March 2014
New York February / March 2014