Celebrity chefs throwing elaborate dinner parties are another thing to get excited about

Sure, dinner with family and friends is a time-honored tradition. But these days, there’s more buzz about celebrity chefs, some of whom seem intent on becoming Internet darlings.

Take Suzi Gage, whose 16-year-old son, Parker, with his crafty ambidextrous skills and suspicious manner, is the cooking star of Food Network. Currently Gage is promoting the latest in her Parker Gage Burger series, but she is also busy with her celebrity cookbook project, which recently came out and is generating plenty of commentary.

But that’s not the only reason to be excited about celebrity food. Recent weeks have also seen plenty of interest in ― you guessed it ― celebrity dinner parties.

A much-ridiculed Lauren Hutton picnic published earlier this month by Time magazine triggered many a “Does she even have friends?” response. Hutton wrote a blog post explaining that the actual picnic, which was held at a local park, included a field trip to a supermarket to buy some food to split with some friends.

Hutton explained, however, that she did invite three of her friends over ― one of whom actually does have two children. The other two “attended anyway,” and according to the actress, served s’mores, summer squash, and macaroni and cheese with a side order of paranoia. “One of my friends joked we should tag each other, ‘friends of the state,’” she wrote.

During a celebration of Cloris Leachman’s 90th birthday earlier this month, the guest list included members of the cast of her infamous TV series “Maude.” The bash at Philadelphia’s Mayfair Bistro included two of the actors: Bea Arthur, who played Maude, and the late Rue McClanahan, whom Maude was forced to leave to marry George Sanders’ character.

“It seemed like a very clever way to include two characters from one show,” said The Washington Post’s Carrie Budoff Brown, noting the fact that Leachman first played Maude as a lesbian and then played her straight.

In Hawaii earlier this month, the cast of “Private Parts” and various film professionals watched footage of the 2003 film in honor of the restaurant’s 20th anniversary. Four years ago, Johnny Knoxville, Michelle Rodriguez, Andy Dick, and Kat Dennings went bowling for the anniversary.

Director Jonathan Demme hosted a pair of dinner parties with Brad Pitt and Ben Affleck in Los Angeles last month to celebrate the opening of Otium, Demme’s restaurant and nightclub in downtown L.A. The party guests dined on a “pay-what-you-can menu” and noshed on classic cheese dumplings, fried mushrooms, and sweetbread sliders.

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