Bon Appétit's Andrew Knowlton has just named the upcoming Flour + Water spinoff Central Kitchen as one of the Top Five Hottest Restaurant Openings in the country in 2012. He's got them opening in February, which would put them still on schedule (they'd earlier been saying "early 2012"). Meanwhile, Food & Wine lavishes some attention on young chef-owner Thomas McNaughton, choosing him to represent twentysomethings in a list of "American Culinary Icons" that includes one person for each decade of life. It's a pretty prestigious list given that Thomas Keller is the rep for people in their 50s.
They call McNaughton a "latter-day traditionalist," and explain that he's "iconic" in their eyes "Because his dedication to his era’s hyper-focused, do-it-yourself approach at Flour + Water restaurant in San Francisco has allowed him to master Old World dough-making techniques along with modern innovations."
Another Bay Area resident made the list as well: The indisputably iconic Cecilia Chiang, age 91, whose restaurant The Mandarin defined high-end Chinese cuisine in S.F. in the 60s and 70s.
Look for more updates here on Central Kitchen and its companion deli/sandwich shop Salumeria come next month.
Top 5 Hottest Restaurant Openings in America in 2012 [Bon App]
American Culinary Icons [Food & Wine]
Earlier: Central Kitchen Gets a Former Manresa Chef, and a Rendering
Thomas McNaughton Teaches Grade Schoolers to Make Pig’s Brain Lasagna