Chefs Colicchio, Boulud, Pepi celebrate Thomas Keller at Tribute Dinner [VIDEO]

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Thomas-Keller-PebbleBeachFoodWineOn April 14 2012, Chefs, sommeliers, wine-makers and foodinistas arrived at Carmel for the 5th Annual Pebble Beach Food & Wine Festival.

Throughout the weekend visitors delighted at the experience of culinary and wine talent at wine tastings, cooking demos, and some of the most exclusive, unique dining opportunities available in the world.  But it all began with the Tribute to a Legend Dinner.

In previous years the Legend Dinner has seen Tom Colicchio, Daniel Boulud, and Jacques Pepin taking turns as honorees; this year the spotlight was on Thomas Keller.

It was twenty years ago, in the spring of 1992, that Thomas Keller first came across a rustic stone building in Yountville that would later become the iconic restaurant, The French Laundry.  His culinary achievements include everything from dual Michelin 3-Star ratings for the French Laundry and Per Se – the only American-born chef to ever achieve this distinction – to a consulting role on the wildly-successful Pixar film, Ratatouille.  Oh yes, there are also the cookbooks and the blossoming restaurant empire that includes Bouchon, Bouchon Bakery & Ad Hoc.  Through it all, Keller remains a “chef’s chef,” an uncompromising beacon of integrity and technique in the kitchen and one who has inspired and trained a whole generation of young culinarians.