LeBron James and Kevin Durant may have both scored 36 points in the NBA All-Star game, but they weren't the only ones feasting on Sunday night.

Everyone that flocked to Amway Center for the annual battle between East and West was treated to a show for their taste buds as well, courtesy of Chef John Nicely. He and his team developed the special menu over the past year in anticipation of the game coming to Orlando. That included special tastings with fans to make sure every item was a winner long before tip-off.

The result was one of the best lineups for any NBA arena all season. There was the classic beef tenderloin with miniature twist rolls, horseradish sauce, mustard and homemade potato salad. And the smoked turkey burger breast sandwich served on a brioche roll. But the best part of Chef Nicely's locally-sourced menu was the two seafood dishes: The coriander shrimp and Florida shrimp burger.

Full Story >>

Used to be the Wheaties box was the only place you could find an athlete's face in the breakfast aisle. Through the years, though, a lot more pros have gotten into the act. Michael Phelps has graced a Kelloggs cover. Who will ever forget Flutie Flakes from the Buffalo Bills great? And even Chad Ochocinco got into the act with Ochocinco O's. (Although probably best to forget about those since the box was mistakenly printed with the number for a phone sex line instead of the "Feed the Children" charity.)

The latest to throw his name behind a cereal is Justin Verlander. The Detroit Tigers pitcher recently announced the sale of Fastball Flakes, which are available in the Detroit area at all Meijer stores and online.

Full Story >>


LOS ANGELES -- When it comes to the list of healthiest cities in the U.S., California dominates with more entries in the Top 20 than any other state. So it's no surprise that the Northern Trust Open in Pacific Palisades would cater to the nutrient and calorie conscious crowd out to watch this weekend's PGA Tour stop at Riviera Country Club.

Sure, there are hot dog and hamburger vendors behind every sand trap, and pretzel carts galore, but the healthy fare is there and it's popular. That's thanks to Hole N One Sports Catering, one of the food providers for the tournament. One of their biggest sellers is the Southern California favorite Mahi Mahi Tacos, served with a corn and black bean salsa, and fresh fruit.

"A lot of catering companies at big events just dump things out of a can," says Theresa Mastroianni of Hole N One. "We make everything fresh."

Full Story >>

The QB Killa has a sophisticated palate.

But don't take my word for it. That analysis of Warren Sapp's taste buds comes from Ludovic Lefebvre, regarded as one of the best chefs in Los Angeles -- if not the world. Chef Ludo, as he's known, has cooked for a number of high profile former and current athletes recently, but the seven-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle really stands out.

"The first time I cooked for him he ate this fancy tomato salad with mozzarella ice cream and he loved it," Chef Ludo says. "He ordered two or three. He's very open. I was very surprised."

If you couldn't tell by the description, Lefebvre is cooking on a whole different level than most chefs. Born and trained in France, he moved to L.A. in 1996 and quickly made a name for himself working in some of the best kitchens in the city. But instead of opening his own brick and mortar restaurant, Chef Ludo revolutionized the dining scene in the fall of 2007 by creating a "pop-up" dining experience. LudoBites opens in a different location with a completely new menu, serves for a month or so, then shuts down and moves on.

Full Story >>

Big companies usually go after big names as endorsers. Preferably one-name names: Kobe, Peyton, LeBron.

So ... why has Subway brought in Mike Lee?

Make no mistake, Lee is one of the most recognizable boxers in the world, even though he's only had eight pro bouts. But he's now featured prominently in Subway's national advertising campaign alongside the likes of NFL stars Justin Tuck and Ndamukong Suh, baseball stars Ryan Howard and CC Sabathia, and NBA star Blake Griffin. Those are some of the biggest names in the sports universe.

Boxers aren't generally sought to endorse mainstream products these days and Lee is the only boxer in the U.S. currently involved in a national campaign.

Lee, though, came upon his spot in the Subway commercials genuinely: He was a fan of the sandwich chain's turkey sub, and made a habit as a student at Notre Dame of eating one right after getting off the scale at the weigh-in before on-campus intramural fights.

That caught the attention of Tony Pace, Subway's chief marketing officer, whose company was looking more for what it calls "famous fans" rather than a spokesman.

Full Story >>

It's been a rough few days for Wes Welker and the rest of the New England Patriots. Between Gisele's dissatisfaction and James Harrison's taunting, no one seems to be interested in letting the Super Bowl XLVI losers simmer in peace.

And now it's gotten worse for Welker. Pawngo, an online pawn shop, delivered 900 pounds (8,000 bars) worth of Butterfingers to Boston's Copley Square as a thank you for his fourth-quarter drop, one of the more replayed gaffes that gave the New York Giants a chance to come back and win the game. The mocking delivery was made while the Giants were celebrating with a victory parade in New York's Canyon of Heroes.

It's a light-hearted gesture, though that certainly won't comfort Welker if it gets back to him. It's also a little bold, because Tom Brady had as much to do with the drop as Welker, but mostly because we'd hate to be the girl standing around Boston with a "Thank you Wes Welker" sign. Doesn't seem like the safest line of work this week in the greater New England area.

Full Story >>

You may know the 49-year-old restaurateur for his eponymous chain that stretches from Philadelphia to Bahrain. You might recognize him as the cape-clad fan from the 2006 movie "Invincible." Maybe you even know him by his real name: Anthony Lucidonio Jr.

But no matter how you know Tony Luke, Jr., you've got a lot to learn.

Last Friday marked the 20th anniversary of his first South Philly cheesesteak and Italian sandwich shop opening, but there was no grand celebration. Not that Luke isn't fiercely proud of the accomplishment; it's just that he has so much on his plate. And that couldn't be more ironic considering the once larger-than-life personality has shed nearly half of his 365-pound frame in the past year.

Luke wasn't always overweight. He stayed in shape as a kid and was a determined boxer in his younger days. He didn't starting putting on the pounds until after he got married.

"You say you'll take it off, but after 60 or 70 pounds," he says, "in your mind, it becomes an insurmountable amount to lose."

Full Story >>

About 10 feet from every television this Sunday will be a table with all the usual suspects; a gluttony of man food that’s about as appealing to most women as varicose veins.

After the first quarter of the Super Bowl, the cheese dip starts to form an impenetrable skin. The chicken wings have gone soggy. The bowl of chips is already staling. The only thing worse than the ubiquitous spread is having to watch your husband or boyfriend make repeated trips to this decaying buffet.

But have no fear, gentlemen. We’ve got some advice for you from Sarah and Ingrid Harbaugh.

Yes, of those Harbaughs.

"You get sick of all the man food," says Sarah, who's married to 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh. "We go through the whole season, Sunday after Sunday, of chicken wings, pizza and subs."

Full Story >>

Eli Manning has already made sure his New York Giants offensive linemen were all warmed up ahead of Sunday’s Super Bowl with a pre-game practical joke involving an explosive horseradish sauce.

The Giants quarterback treated several of his teammates to dinner at famous Indianapolis eatery St Elmo's Steakhouse on Monday night, and encouraged them all to try the restaurant's legendary shrimp cocktail.

What many of the players didn’t realize, however, was that the cocktail sauce at St Elmo’s is laced with copious helpings of horseradish, leading to a sinus-clearing, tear-inducing experience.

Full Story >>