Ryan Scott, a contestant on season four of "Top Chef," a BlueStar All Star, and now the host of his own San Francisco-based television show, "Food Rush," is best known for his West Coast style and his love of cooking with his mom. In town with BlueStar for the Architectural Digest Show, held from March 19 through 22 at Piers 92/94, Scott chatted with amNewYork about his love for the city, his favorite New York spots and how to cook at home like a pro.

 

What's your favorite restaurant in New York City and why?

Hands down, Daniel. It’s top-notch and reminds me always where I should be in the culinary world.

 

You cook a lot with your mom. What's one of your favorite dishes to make together?

It may sound simple, but spaghetti. Not only is her recipe for perfect spaghetti foolproof, but it’s just so delicious every time. I love her and her food. (They also make some killer chocolate chip cookies together. Get the recipe at bluestarcooking.com.)

 

Even though we did see some more snow, it's spring in New York. What is one of your favorite seasonal dishes to make?

For spring, there is nothing better than grilled asparagus with lemon and house made ranch. It’s simple, clean and refreshing – just like spring. Trust me on this one.  

 

What are your thoughts on the New York food scene? What is a little-known place people should check out?

New York is so full of amazing food that no matter where you are or what your budget is, you can find it everywhere. Honestly, you can enjoy great food on any side stand on the street in the City. Trust me, you can't go wrong. Falafel or fries-- you win!

 

What was it like competing on "Top Chef?" What was your favorite moment and why?

Eight years later and the show is still part of me. It’s nuts. I know that I’ll always be remembered for the poached pears and that’s OK – bring it!

 

What would you say to other aspiring chefs or children that think they may want to take this route?

Being a chef is hard work and not every chef gets their big break or gets recognized. My best advice would be to work for free for one year as an apprentice to your favorite chef and then if you’re still down, go for it. 

 

Fill in the blank: New York City has the best...

Everything! Food, life and food. I love New York.

 

What equipment do you cook on at home? How does that make the difference in your dishes?

No joke, my pans from HSN. They are the best pans ever. You have to try them.

I also cook on a great BlueStar range. It’s really a restaurant quality range in my house, which makes cooking easy and fun because I get to cook with the same power at home and don’t have to adjust much. I have a 36-inch RNB with a charbroiler option and got to customize it in my favorite color. It’s pretty amazing. If you’re a serious cook, definitely invest in some great equipment.