Born December 10th, 1964, master chef Bobby Flay netted sweeping recognition for his contribution to making Southwestern American cuisine one of the mainstays of gourmet dining in the United States during the 1990s and 2000s. A New York City native, Flay took a job during adolescence at the Joe Allen Restaurant in Manhattan, where he dazzled everyone with his culinary skills. Courtesy of Allen, Flay later attended the prestigious French Culinary Institute, then accepted a position as one of the chefs at the Manhattan-based Miracle Grill, where the proprietors gave him the breadth and freedom of invention necessary to concoct a series of original dishes with a Southwestern theme that quickly caught on with the public. In 1991, Flay traveled the entrepreneurial route, opening his own Mesa Grill, an eatery that soon became the toast of the Big Apple; successive restaurants, including Bolo and the Mesa Grill Las Vegas, followed, as did numerous cookbooks. Flay is best known to many, however, for his long stint on television's Food Network, as the host of the programs Boy Meets Grill and FoodNation. He also memorably competed against Masaharu Morimoto on the original Japanese cooking competition series Iron Chef, and subsequently served as a formidable Iron Chef on Iron Chef America. In 2005, Flay participated in the television series The Next Food Network Star. Flay built up his food empire, with shows like Boy Meets Grill, Throwdown! with Bobby Flay and Brunch at Bobby's. He also released a number of cookbooks and opened several restaurants, including a chain of Bobby's Burger Palaces.
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