Colicchio, Chang, Ripert, Flay, Morimoto--ever wonder what they would want to eat for their last meal on earth? Photographer Melanie Dunea captures the last suppers of 50 of the world's most renowned chefs in her new book "My Last Supper: The Next Course," a follow up to "My Last Supper," an intimate look into the last meals of some of the greats. We talked to Melanie about her inspiration for the book and we were curious to know what her last supper would be like.
How did you come up with this original idea and how did you choose the chefs?
I came up with the idea when I started to photograph chefs and realized that what they eat away from their restaurants isn't necessarily what they are serving. I decided to give them an ultimatum and find out what would be their ultimate food.
Are you yourself a home chef or foodie or both?
I love to cook simple food and I tend to eat out a lot... but I am neither a home chef or a foodie.
Were you surprised by anyone's response to your questions?
Each chef's answer reveals a great deal about them. I loved the unexpected answers like Dave Chang wanting to drink Bud Light and Albert Adria wanting to share his last supper with drunken clowns.
If you could dine with anyone (living or dead) who would you dine with? And, where or what would you eat?
Oh la la, that is a tough question... I will give you an abbreviated list because the list is long! I wouldn't want anyone to stay at the dinner for the whole night, except my husband, but these people can make an appearance then disappear when I see fit. Some of the guests: Paul Newman, Ernest Hemingway, Picasso, Georgia O'Keefe, Escoffier, Wallace Simpson, Nabakov, Jim Harrison, Mozart, to name a few.
We would all share an enormous wooden platter of french cheeses, dried cured Italian meats, French baguettes, crappy candy from the movie theater, cakes with lots of frosting, cones stacked with mint chocolate chip ice cream and finish it with Thornton's chocolate smothered toffee. We would laugh and get very very drunk on English beers, amazing red wines and Ruby Port, but it wouldn't matter because there would be no hangover as it's our last supper.
The following questions pertain to the themes of upcoming episodes of our show. What's the best thing you've ever eaten between two buns?
I prefer the bun to anything inside of it. In fact, give me two or three buns.
What food do you turn to for a late-night bite?
Crunchy things... like cereal and pretzels.
© The Next Course by Melanie Dunea / CPi. Published by Rodale Books. Available where all books are sold.