- The main attraction in the reservation-only velvet-rope exclusive restaurants in New York is the celebrities. Abbe Diaz
has seen them all and isn't afraid to dish.
"Oh geez, why does it always boil down to Gwyneth Paltrow
?" says Diaz, a designer with her own line of clothing known as Geld Iaz and author of "PX This" a tell-all book about working in the top restaurants in the Big Apple. "I'm far more fascinated by the logistics and implications of a multi-billion dollar food-and-beverage-as-entertainment industry that literally hoodwinks and exploits its most devoted followers and passionate patrons, not to mention what it does to its dedicated laborers.
Diaz has made such a name for herself in the city, that every sagacious New York fine-dining restaurant owner, chef, and employee (and numerous professional restaurant critics) follows her blog. She draws her observations from her experience in the business and her bachelor's degree in economics. She has even developed a TV treatment for a sitcom based on her life. Dubbed "The Truman Capote
," "The Norma Rae," and "The Nikke Finke" of the restaurant world, she can even boast Nobel Prize winner Salman Rushdie
as a fan.
"Outside the context of the entire book, the celebrity anecdotes are kind of lame," she sighs. "But superficiality is a lot of fun sometimes."
• Gwyneth Paltrow: A head-case.
• Claudia Schiffer: Hilarious. Once was too busy yapping on her cell phone to notice a scaffolding outside her hotel. Slammed right into it, doubled over, butt in the air, head over heels. Would have loved to have been on the other end of that call when it happened.
• Sean Hayes
(from "Will and Grace"): Sweet and funny. He kissed my hand and called me cute. A gay man sweats me. How fierce am I.
• Bob Saget ("Full House"): Mr. Do-You-Know-Who-I-Am? Tell it to the Olsen twins, Saget. Maybe they'll still remember you.
• Ben Affleck
: Smart and witty. Do you know he maintained a brilliant anonymous online personality named 'mackdaddy' for his 'Project Greenlight' messageboard community? Kevin Smith
denies it, but when I called him a liar he didn't protest at all. Also, Ben is a great tipper. I love him.
"There are a few stars out there who are nice, but really, for the most part, these people would spit on you unless you were on fire," Diaz added. "But am I bitter? Not really. I'm just sayin'."
About Abbe Diaz
Abbe Diaz is a witty, irreverent, motorcycle-riding commercial-artist/fashion-designer who moonlighted as a maître d' at some of Manhattan's most renowned restaurants. Her diary, "PX This," is a lighthearted, humorous, and uniquely insightful romp through the nightly playgrounds of some of New York's (and Hollywood's) most glamorous and elite as viewed from the front podium. Her second book, "PX Me," a sequel to "PX This," is due out in the summer of 2011.
For more information go to www.pxthis.com