Charlie Ayers had one of the best head chef jobs in the world: He ran 10 cafes in Mountain View, creating the best food possible for people who didn't have to pay for it, with the whole operation funded by a magic pipe that spewed cash. In exchange he got buried in stock options, because his employer was Google and he was employee number 53. Dammit! How'd he score the plum job? He won a cook-off. A cook-off! Who can't win a cook-off? By the time he left he had five sous chefs and 150 employees who churned out 4,000 lunches and dinners daily, serving the little Googlites and civilians lucky enough to visit, like Bono, Bill Clinton, Queen Noor of Jordan, and Mario Batali. Now Ayers has an even better job: He does whatever he pleases. Lately that meant he wrote a book of recipes about the brainfood he served, Food 2.0: Secrets of the Chef Who Fed Google.
Sun., May 11, 2 p.m., 2008