Alan Batt, better known in the culinary world as simply Battman, began his career as a photographer in 1981. Back then, he was shooting photos of city scenes and landmark sites of New York City and publishing them as greeting cards sold throughout the city. Battman has taken photos for the New York Times, the U.S. Virgin Islands Tourism, NYC and Company, and ten years for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade (as lead photographer). In his role as a photographer, he has walked up the Brooklyn Bridge cable, stood on the ice shield of the Empire State Building and was invited to photograph the last steps of the Second Avenue Subway, breaking through the last wall to connect it to the F train tunnel. For 17 years from 1987 to 2004, he had a permanent exhibition of 35 prints in the Empire State Building. Since 1995, he has been photographing and publishing the New York City Firefighters calendar, raising over $700,00 for various charities including the Staten Island Burn Center.
In 2001 at Tribeca Grill, Battman took his first food photograph, Lamb Chops. He never thought much about food before but was in awe of what the chefs could do. In 2002, he asked 21 of the best chefs in New York for their best looking dish, which he then photographed and added to his Empire State Building exhibition. In 2004, he published their recipes in his first book, “The Great Bagels and Lox Book.” Batt has subsequently published 12 more books: every year, he works with over 200 chefs to create a new book, and a corresponding book signing event, The Great Gathering of Chefs (having more chefs together in one place than any other event in the world). Profits from these events and book sales are given to various children’s charities.
The Chefs Connection website has been around for 4 years. It connects people and chefs and chefs with chefs. The views per month are 18-20 thousand. Out of this came a Line Cook School that trains and places unemployed people in restaurants around New York City. The school is free of charge to the students.
He is currently working on 8 new books with chefs around the country.
Cristina was born in NYC and raised between the Big Apple and Los Angeles. She enjoys wearing many different hats, such as selling luxury NYC real estate at Corcoran, performing and producing comedy shows, and interviewing the most talented chefs in the world for the The Chefs Connection. Cristina hosts a monthly comedy show at Caroline’s on Broadway, “HERsterical,” which features the funniest female comedians. One of her recent shows was headlined by Vanessa Bayer from “Saturday Night Live” and was part of the 10th annual New York Comedy Festival. Cristina has appeared on “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” on Comedy Central, and “American Gypsies” on the National Geographic Channel. She studied acting and film production at American University, studied for a year in Italy, and trained at the Upright Citizen’s Brigade for improv comedy. Cristina is an avid salsa dancer, travel enthusiast, and self-proclaimed chocoholic. Check out her website: www.CristinaCote.com for more information.
Hitomi has worked with Battman Studios for 20 years as office manager, make-up artist and video editor.
Joelle was born and raised in Queens, New York. She is a former member of New York City Civic Corps, an AmeriCorps initiative partnering with nonprofit organizations to increase volunteer initiatives. She attended Temple University, where she majored in Film and African American Studies. Ms. Blackstock later pursued a Master’s Degree from New York University in Africana Studies. Her thesis, The Scourged Back of Hip Hop: The Commodification of the Wounded Black Body, explores how the black body in pain is made available for public consumption in hip-hop culture. She is passionate about using the arts & media to service the community, loves 90’s R&B, is a black and white films fanatic, and a major Foodie. Allyshia Hamilton
A native of Birmingham, AL, Allyshia moved to New York after winning clothier Ashley Stewart’s “Great Woman of Style” search in 2004. Since then she has been featured in print ads, runway shows and television spots for companies such as GlaxoSmithKline, Essence Magazine, Lord & Taylor and Lifetime Television. A Communications graduate of Alabama A&M University, Allyshia started her career as a Prep Sports Writer for The Birmingham News before going on to work for some of the biggest companies in the sports industry including the U.S. Open and ESPN2. An avid traveler, Allyshia is working on her goal of visiting all 50 States and has aspirations to host her own travel show.
Allyshia has always had a love for cooking and credits her great-grandmother for making sure she learned to cook from scratch. “My great-grandmother had me in the kitchen at 4-years old!” Allyshia also loves to bake and her specialty? ABCDs: Allyshia’s Bundt Cake Delights!
A New York City-raised writer, foodie, and yogi. As a proponent of mindfulness and positive living, her writing reflects her strong moral and ethical views. She graduated Cum Laude from Hunter College with a BA in Creative Writing and Studio Art, but has been writing creatively and painting since adolescence. Her endless hobbies include international travel, reading poetry, and playing with her energetic rescue dog. She can be contacted directly at firstname.lastname@example.org