Mario Batali and his famous orange Crocs are everywhere, all the time. But on October 18, they'll be in one place and one place only: the White House. At least, Mario Batali will be at the White House, but here's hoping his orange sandals won't be joining him there. As for who will be joining him? Gwen Stefani. The duo will headline President Obama's most-likely final White House State Dinner, honoring Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi and his wife, Agnese Landini. Batali will be the chef at the dinner, and Gwen Stefani will provide the musical entertainment, according to the news announced via Michelle Obama’s Snapchat.
The Batali-Stefani duo may sound strange, but both stars have Italian roots, so the pairing makes some sense for an Italy State Dinner. Celebrity chef Mario Batali is internationally renowned for his regional Italian cuisine, and Stefani, famous for her band No Doubt and her fashion line L.A.M.B., has Italian heritage via her father. She's also a big fan of Italian food and especially of Anaheim-based Cortina’s Italian Market & Pizzeria, and it's fair to assume she has a more than passing familiarity with Batali's celeb-studded restaurants.
Meanwhile, Michelle Obama dined at Batali's Babbo when she was in New York City last month and Gwen Stefani has a long friendship with the Obamas: She even hosted an Obama fundraiser at her Los Angeles home during the 2012 campaign.
Since Stefani is an always-inventive style icon, we're eager to see what she rocks for the event. Batali is rarely seen without his long-shorts and zip-up vest (and those sandals), and we're hoping he can pass those off as black-tie. But will Batali and Stefani's famous wardrobes find any kind of symmetry at the White House next week? Stay tuned.
The Feast is Bravo’s digital destination for foodies, serving fresh culinary inspo, piping hot celebrity food coverage, diet and wellness trends, plus the kitchen hacks and tools you never knew you needed. Like us on Facebook and visit daily for a curated menu of essential food news, from seriously thought provoking to just plain fun.