Orphaned at age 3 and raised in Göteborg by adoptive parents Lennart, a geologist who died in 1996, and homemaker Anne Marie, 71, he honed his culinary skills at the knee of his grandmother Helga, a professional cook.Now executive chef and co-owner of the acclaimed Aquavit eateries in New York City and Minneapolis (a third is set to open in Manhattan this fall), Samuelsson captured the prestigious James Beard Foundation’s Rising Star Chef award last year.
“My dad is the easiest one,” explains the soft-spoken, Michigan-raised shortstop, who receives an average of five crates of mail from mostly female fans every week. Most importantly, “when he does settle down,” says his friend Costas Panagopoulos, “he’ll commit to it with full force.” BIG PLUS: He’s modest (“There are times I’ve been rejected that would spin your head around,” he told Time last year).
CAVEAT: He has said that his nonstop work schedule has left him “out of gas.” 4 GEORGE PRESCOTT BUSH, 24, paralegal, Los Angeles.
He’d like to “live at Disneyland” and he waxes nostalgic about a favorite date: “We picked lemons in her yard, cut them up and made lemonade, and then sat out there and drank it.” The 6’1″ crooner and sometime actor (Friends and films) was reared by factory-worker parents in Stockton, Calif.
He wants to have kids someday but says he came close to the altar only once.
We talked to their friends, their mothers, their siblings, their dry cleaners and in some cases even their ex-wives. “That’s what women find sexy about him—he’s a regular guy.” Too bad he’s so hard to hook.