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Thursday, February 4, 2016

The Weekly Roundup: Super Bowl Wings Recipe, Where To Find This Poké Trend and The 13 Best Beer Bars In NYC

  • The Explosive History Of Kossar's, NYC's Most Famous Bialy Bakery: Puffy and floury, oniony and garlicky, the perfect vehicle for butter—bialys are one of the city's great carbohydrate treasures and there are none so important to our city's history than Kossar's, the longtime Lower East Side shop that's been baking them up for 80 years.
  • 18-HOUR SHIFTS, SEX & FIGHTS: THE INSANE LIFE OF AN NYC BARTENDER.  "If you talk to anyone with bar experience, they will probably agree they didn't know how to do half the stuff they know now after working in a bar," says Rick Sanders*, a bartender who has been in the industry for 16 years.
  • Carnegie Deli Vows Return Following Illegal Gas Hookup: Touristy pastrami palace Carnegie Deli is still closed nine months after Con Edison inspectors found improper gas piping installed in the Midtown eatery's basement. The discovery led to a stop work order by the Department of Buildings that has remained in place despite repairs by the ownership to get the building up to code. In light of the longtime closure, the 79-year-old deli has vowed that it will reopen.
  • April Bloomfield and Ken Friedman’s Salvation Burger Will Open Next Week: Fried fruit pies. Fish sandwiches. Boozy shakes. Special sauce. Burgers and fries. Hot dogs and jalapeño poppers. Must be a new Hardee's or a TGI Fridays coming to town. No, sir, it's April Bloomfield and Ken Friedman's deep dive into all-American fast food at the Pod 51 hotel.



  • Louis C.K. and Ex-Wife Buy Fourth Greenwich Village Apartment: Brutally and hilariously self-deprecating comedian Louis C.K. and his ex-wife, portrait painter Alix Bailey, have paid $564,900 for an itty-bitty studio apartment in the same co-operative-style brownstone building at the northern border of New York City’s West Village where this property gossip’s research indicates they already co-own three other small and not-necessarily contiguous units.
  • Poké Reaches the Shores of Manhattan: Since November, Mr. DiMartini has been working out of the Coffee Foundry in Greenwich Village. Ostensibly he serves poké Monday to Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., but his shipments of fish from Hawaii don’t always arrive or meet his standards, so it’s safer to call ahead.
    • Poké Nopé: I Dropped $50 At Wisefish & Still Left Hungry.  Prediction: the poké boom is doomed.  This bit of soothsaying isn't prompted by the quality of food I ate last week at the brand new Wisefish Poké in Chelsea, the latest in a sudden eruption of poké shacks on the Big Island (of Manhattan), with more looming on the horizon. To be clear, the poké at Wisefish tastes good, but the poké portions are lacking.
  • The 13 Best Beer Bars In NYC: Here we are in 2015, and my favorite beer bar in NYC is still Blind Tiger Ale House. 

  • Gansevoort Market Is Moving to its New Location on 14th Street This Spring: Gansevoort Market is moving to its new location in the Meatpacking District in the next few months, according to owner Chris Reda. The food hall's current location at 52 Gansevoort St. is being transformed into a new version of Keith McNally's restaurant Pastis. Meanwhile, the market, which doesn't have to leave the space until the fall, will move down the block to 353 West 14th St. in March or April, Reda says, though it may make the transition earlier.
  • Out and About in the East Village: Profile on Niall Grant, Owner of Tuck Shop in the East Village and Chelsea Market.
  • The Lively Brings Retro '70s Vibes To The Meatpacking District: To walk into The Lively is to experience extremes of light and shadow, polish and grit. The new Meatpacking District club has plenty of dark corners and gnarled, arched brick ceilings. Then again, it features bright technicolor lighting and a massive disco ball at its center. The Lively aims to capture a retro vibe that's part CBGB subterranean, part Studio 54. It's as seedy as it is sheeny, and for the most part it succeeds.

  • Cafe Grumpy moving into Brewster Carriage House in Nolita: Café Grumpy is taking 800 s/f on the ground floor, and a co-operative for tech/consulting company is taking 4,500 s/f on the lower level, a unique space featuring 15-foot barrel-vaulted ceilings and light streaming through skylights embedded in the sidewalk surrounding the corner building at Mott and Broome Streets.
  • Opening Soon: Salvation Burger, Pasquale Jones and Mr. Donohue’s.  The folks behind the much-beloved SoHo staple Charlie Bird are opening a second Italian-inspired eatery in Nolita on February 16. Chef Ryan Hardy will be joined by chef Tim Caspare (of SF's Quince and Cotogna) at the Stefano Ferrara brick ovens (which heat up to 900 degrees) to char up pizzas they're dubbing "Neo-NY" style pies as well as wood-fired pork shoulder and other dishes. 

  • Russ & Daughters Team to Open Huge New Space in Brooklyn Navy Yard: New York icon Russ & Daughters is opening a huge manufacturing center and retail shop at Brooklyn Navy Yard's planned new food hall, its first retail foray outside of Manhattan. The bagel and fish purveyor is leasing a whopping 14,000-square-feet in Building 77, including space for the company's new bakery, wholesale food production, shipping, catering, and an outpost of its classic bagel sandwich shop for the public. The more than 100-year-old business will be the anchor business for the property, which will house many other smaller food vendors and manufacturers.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

The Weekly Roundup: 10 Food Things NYC Does Better, Chelsea Markets New Food Stars and Murray's Cheese Tasting Menu

  • The NYC Blizzard Bagel Challenge, 2016: Senior critic Robert Sietsema embarks on a bagel taste test during the great blizzard.
  • 10 Things New York Does Better Than Anywhere Else: It might be a little city-centric to say that New York has the best food in the world, but it certainly has the most variety. The foodscape of Manhattan and the surrounding boroughs is nothing short of a melting pot. Some of the things we do best were born here, like pastrami on rye and pizza by the slice, others came from abroad, like omakase sushi. Here are ten things New York does better than anywhere else.
  • The 11 Best Pasta Cacio e Pepes in NYC: This week’s magazine takes a look at how chefs are adapting the flavor profile of the classic Roman pasta, spaghetti cacio e pepe, to things like pizza and doughnuts, and hypothesizes that it won’t be long until we’re munching on Cacio e Pepe Doritos. All of which is not to suggest that the dish itself is in decline. In fact, traditional versions of what must be the original mac ’n’ cheese have never been more popular. Here’s where to find it.
  • These Are the Best Date Restaurants in New York: Maybe you want a sit-down place with flattering lighting, or maybe you'd prefer a festive taco spot that offers some distraction should things go south. No matter your dating style, here are the best date restaurants in New York City.
    • Where to Dine on Valentine’s Day 2016: While it’s easy enough to pick up a dozen roses and a heart-shaped box of chocolates at the very last minute, you’d be well advised not to neglect dinner reservations until the morning of the 14th.  So get a head start on Valentine’s Day by locking down a table at one of New York’s most notable restaurants.

  • Coffee-Shop Etiquette: We all love a good cup of coffee to start the day, but what exactly are the official rules when it comes to proper coffee-shop etiquette? Zagat host Billy Lyons investigates.
  • How I lost nearly 100 pounds eating pizza: For lunch nearly every day, he eats an entire pizza margherita. While that might not seem like diet-friendly fare, Cozzolino explains that his Neapolitan-style pies are not your typical New York slices.
  • Whole Foods Just Recalled a Bunch of Frozen Pizza: People who avoid pork for this, that, or the other reason should desist from eating Whole Foods pepperoni pizza right now. The grocer has recalled about 74,000 pounds of store-brand frozen pies because the USDA says that for the whole past year the "uncured beef pepperoni" on the label has actually been pork.
  • Escaping the Restaurant Industry's Motherhood Trap: How paid parental leave could solve the culinary gender gap.
  • California’s Scandal-Free Olive Oil Is Starting to Panic Old-World Producers: California's olive producers are on the cusp of transforming the industry : The state's growers, who right now account for 0.1 percent of the world market, tell Bloomberg that an era of celebrated American olive oil is imminent.


  • High Street on Hudson to Roll Out Dinner Service Wednesday: Ellen Yin and chef Eli Kulp will add dinner service to High Street on Hudson beginning   Wednesday, January 27. On Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays, the menu will be offered from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., and the restaurant will serve the menu till 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.
  • Radio-Themed Ramen and Sichuan Peppercorns Fly in the Door: Let’s face it, the standard décor for ramen parlors has become entirely predictable and maybe even boring: blond woods, functional furniture, harsh lighting, and a businesslike atmosphere that encourages slurping and splitting. Well, that’s all about to change. Check out Ramen By Mew.
  • This Cheese-Based Tasting Menu Is NYC's Best New Meal: It was the second official night of the Monger's Table, where one section of the bar at Murray's Cheese Bar is transformed into a cheese-centric tasting menu led led by Freier, who was on a mission to educate, entertain and, most importantly, extol the virtues of some delicious global cheeses.

  • What to Expect From Dinner at Dizengoff NYC:  Michael Solomonov and Steve Cook are about a month away from opening the New York outpost of their hit Israeli hummusiya, Dizengoff.  Like the original in Philadelphia, the restaurant will offer set meals of hummus, fresh-baked pita, salads, and pickles during the day.  But unlike the original, Dizengoff NYC will offer dinner.
  • Sesame Seeds Star at Chelsea Market’s New Seed + Mill:  The shop sells jars of plain and parsley-tinged tahini to be used as a condiment or in cooking, but the real impulse-purchase lure is the halva, shaped in dense beige cakes, suffused with flavors like cardamom, coffee, and ginger, and sold by the slice or in crumbled “bites,” both for $6 a quarter-pound.

  • 'Basquiat Burger' Restaurant PYT Vanishes After Three Months:  One of the fall's most anticipated casual restaurants belly flopped in a big way. The stunt burger specialists behind Philadelphia's PYT closed their Bowery restaurant after three months in business. Last week, PYT was dark and a sign in the window explained that the team was "working on the back room." But now a "for rent" banner hangs in the window of the restaurant and the space next door.

  • Why You Should Definitely Try Malaysian-Style White Coffee: At Kopitiam, a teeny-tiny Malaysian café on Canal Street, there's a coffee drink that rivals what's served at Stumptown, La Colombe, and every other shop with exposed brick and mustachioed baristas. The beans for the $4 white coffee — already praised by New York Times critic Ligaya Mishan and which, despite its name, has nothing to do with a flat white or the newest Starbucks latte — are roasted with olive oil (not margarine, which is a traditional preparation) and brewed with a touch of condensed milk.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

The Weekly Roundup: An Inside Look At Smorgasburg, Acme Gets A Facelift and UberEATS Launches

  • Inside the Smorgasburg Vendor Taste Test: Since Smorgasburg launched in 2011, the tastings themselves have been held in relative secrecy — they're private to keep the pressure as low as possible for the already nervous new vendors. "For them, it's their dream," co-founder Eric Demby says. "You see their hands shaking." This year, Demby and co-founder Jonathan Butler invited Eater into a day with three tastings to see what it's like. 
  • Danny Meyer's Maialino Will Eliminate Tipping in February: Danny Meyer's plan to eliminate gratuities at all of his New York restaurants continues. Maialino, the always-packed Roman trattoria in the Gramercy Park Hotel, will increase wages, hike prices, and eliminate tipping on February 25, making it the second of thirteen Union Square Hospitality Group establishments to switch. The rest are scheduled to follow suit by the end of 2016.
  • Paired with Oysters, This Wine Is Cleaning Up the New York Harbor: For every bottle sold, Proud Pour pays to restore 100 oysters to local waters.
  • NYC’s Coziest Restaurants: Lucky for you, there are lots of NYC restaurants that are best enjoyed in the colder months. From restaurants that feel like cabins upstate, to the best spots to get down with a bowl of noodles – here are some of our favorite cozy restaurants in NYC.
    • NYC’s Coziest Bars: As soon as the temperature drops below fifty degrees in NYC, a city-wide search for “cozy bars” commences. What makes a cozy bar? A fireplace certainly doesn’t hurt. (You people LOVE fireplaces.) But there are many bars without a burning flame inside of them that are also particularly enjoyable to hang out in when it’s absolutely terrible outside. And we’re here to tell you about the best ones.

  • Bleakest Seafood Study Yet Says There’s Even Less Fish Left Than People Thought: Another day, another depressing study about life in the ocean. Researchers from the University of British Columbia say that the global seafood catch has been underestimated by more than 50 percent over the last 60 years, and that 32 million metric tons of fish go unreported every year. That figure is nearly half of the 86 million metric tons that was reported in 1996, which was the highest catch reported since 1950.
  • Uber’s Food-Delivery App Is Launching in 10 U.S. Cities: Uber is finally ready to launch UberEATS, its food-delivery app, as a full-scale service in the U.S., The Wall Street Journal reports. The app-based ordering platform will debut by March in ten large cities — New York, Chicago, L.A., San Francisco, Austin, Houston, Dallas, Atlanta, and Washington, D.C. — expanding a service the company has been tinkering with to serve as a competitor to GrubHub and DoorDash.
  • Seasonal Eats: All Things Oranges.  Pickings are definitely slim when it comes to winter produce.  So if you’re already over apples and pears, you might as well ride out the winter season with citrus. We’re talking about vitamin C-abundant oranges, clementines, and more; whose vibrantly colored, supremely juicy flesh adds a welcome jolt of freshness to an otherwise ultra-rich cold weather diet.
  • Jacques Pépin’s Life Advice for Young Cooks: At 80 years young, the culinary master is one of the last living legends to have pulled off the challenges that come with Michelin-starred kitchens, presidential palates, and culinary television shows. He’s also been cooking for 60 years longer than most chefs today. I sat down with the kitchen guru to discuss his memoir, The Apprentice: My Life in the Kitchen, get his thoughts on what it takes to become a great chef, and to find out what he thinks of the changing culinary landscape that we live in today.
  • Where Foodies Should Go in 2016: The renowned chef René Redzepi of the two-Michelin-starred Noma in Copenhagen wasn’t exaggerating when he said, “People will travel anywhere for good food — it’s crazy.” Indeed, food lovers are now trooping around the world to both accessible and remote destinations. 


  • You Don't Want To Know How Much A Greenwich Village Apartment Cost In The Year 2000: If you were to purchase a 700-square-foot one bedroom now, for instance, you could expect to fork over as much as $1.3 million for a condo, or upwards of $857,000 for a co-op, according to median sales prices. In 2000, you could have bought that condo for a median price of $432,000 and a co-op one-bedroom for a median price of $380,000, and used that extra cash on *NSYNC tour tickets.
  • HOW TO MAKE TRUFFLED POPCORN: This fancy, truffle-infused popcorn recipe from JBF Outstanding Chef award winner Patrick O'Connell is so delicious you'll want to make enough to last well beyond the end credits of any movie night. His secret? Adding a pinch of sugar to bring out the rich truffle flavor. 
  • An Insider’s Guide to Manhattan’s West Village: Manhattan’s West Village is one of the city’s most treasured neighborhoods and was  recently highlighted by NYC & Company in its most recent installment of the NYCGO Insider Guides. The series shines a spotlight on an individual neighborhood and, in this edition, the West Village took center stage.  

  • Sandwicherie of New York Scores Second Manhattan Location: When Sandwicherie of New York opens next month, it will be replacing a deli at the base of the four-story, 9,000-square-foot residential building at 78 West Third Street.
  • Port Cocktails Are Back: At Dante, my restaurant in New York’s Greenwich Village, I’ve put a port cobbler on our winter menu using Fonseca Late Bottled Vintage 2009. To kick it up a notch, we add small measures of clear, unaged Armagnac, dry orange Curaçao, and maraschino liqueur, as well as marmalade, lemon juice and a few dashes each of Peychaud’s and the aforementioned Dale’s bitters.

  • Baja Fish Tacos and Micheladas Coming to New Chelsea Market Eatery in June: New Yorkers craving the culinary flavors of Baja California and Tijuana can head to Chelsea Market this summer to get their fix.  A Mexican seafood restaurant called Los Mariscos is set to open at 409 W. 15th St. on June 1
  • NYChiliFest 2016 is back at Chelsea Market: Chelsea Market, New York's premier indoor food hall, announced the return of NYChiliFest for 2016. The event is back in Chelsea on Sunday, January 31st for its fifth year since creation. A celebration of chili, beer and all things spicy, guests of the event will have access to an 800-foot concourse of chili stations served by dozens of New York City’s best restaurants and chefs. 

  • Cafe Grumpy Opening In Ground Floor of John Legend's Nolita Building: Cafe Grumpy, the Brooklyn-based coffee shop made famous by the HBO show "Girls," is opening a new location in Nolita.  The building at 177 Mott St. is also home to musician John Legend, the realtors who arranged the Grumpy deal said. Legend lives in one of the building's nine loft-style luxury condos with his wife, Chrissy Teigen.
  • Vandal NYC: 5 Things to Know About Tao Group's Bowery Behemoth: Last weekend, the team behind mega-popular clubstaurants Tao and Lavo opened a sprawling new restaurant on The Bowery called Vandal. Here are some crucial details about the new project from Tao Group's Marc Packer and Rich Wolf, and Stanton Social chefs Chris Santos and Jonathan Kavourakis.
  • Acme’s New Bistro Menu Includes Clams Casino, Veal Agnolotti, and Skirt Steak: Last night, following Mads Refslund's departure, Acme quietly reopened as a French-meets-Italian restaurant, helmed by former db Bistro Moderne chef Brian Loiacono. His menu is much simpler than his Scandinavian predecessor's — food that the fashion set (Acme's target clientele) can eat nightly.
    • Acme's Dining Room Gets a Refresh With Artwork by Close & Schnabel: Here is a look inside the latest incarnation of Jon Neidich and Jean-Marc Houmard's Acme, which relaunched this week as a "contemporary bistro."  While the essential design of the room remains largely unchanged, the artwork is all new and focuses on local artists and a brighter color palate. Artist featured include Chuck Close, Robert Longo, Jean-Kallina, and Julian Schnabel.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

The Weekly Roundup: NYT Takes Two Stars Away From Per Se, 10 Conscience Free Fish Species To Eat and Your NYC Restaurant Week Guide

  • At Thomas Keller’s Per Se, Slips and Stumbles: But in three meals this fall and winter, enough other things have gone awry in the kitchen and dining room to make that theory seem unlikely. Enough, also, to make the perception of Per Se as one of the country’s great restaurants, which I shared after visits in the past, appear out of date. Enough to suggest that the four-star rating it received from Sam Sifton in 2011, its most recent review in The New York Times, needs a hard look.
  • Robicelli's Team Plans to Open 100 Stores Globally — Including Locations in New York: few months ago, Matt and Allison Robicelli announced plans to leave New York for Baltimore due to rising costs in the city.  That's still the plan for now, but today the bakery owners announce that they're planning a whopping 100 new stores globally within the next ten years — including possible locations in New York. Allison and Matt say that they're now working with Fransmart LLC, the same company that's helped franchise expansions for restaurants like the Halal Guys, Mamoun's Falafel, and Calexico. 
  • Secrets of 10 Restaurant and Bar Names in NYC: In NYC, a good name can get you a long way. Dropping the right one can help you gain entry to an exclusive bar; but more importantly, if you do things right in this town, a great name defines your legacy. In a city that places so much emphasis on names, it's no surprise that restaurant owners give a lot of thought to their monikers before selecting them; and the final choices often belie a longer, more intricate personal history or inspiration. Here are NYC restaurants and bars with stories behind the signs on their doors.
  • One City, 50 States: Where To Eat America's Favorite Foods In NYC.  We all know New York is the city to eat any cuisine from just about anywhere in the world. But what if we wanted to stay domestic for dinner? We set out to see if we could get a taste of the most iconic dishes from every state in the US without leaving the five boroughs. Finally, a guide for transplants to get a taste of home.

  • 10 Fish Species You Can Eat With a Clean Conscience: Your New Year’s resolution is to eat more fish, but which ones? Making sense of the web of fraudulent labeling, environmental concerns, and the ever-changing status of various fisheries is enough to scare anyone away from the seafood counter. The solution: Look for local, regional, and abundant species; fish whose careful farming actually helps the environment; and nonnative predators that threaten smaller fish populations.
  • How to Make Eggs: More than any other ingredient, eggs travel smoothly from breakfast to lunch to dinner. They can turn a dish into a meal (perched on seasonal greens, grain dishes or pasta) or they can be the meal themselves (omelets, frittatas and more). At their simplest, eggs are creamy little packages of luxury requiring nothing more than salt to shine. At the end of a busy day, take 5 minutes to poach or fry one, put it on top of a salad or yesterday’s roasted vegetables or rice pilaf, and sit down to dinner.
  • America’s Essential Restaurants 2016: This year's job was no less ambitious: Just as the 38 lists on Eater's city-specific sites grow and change with their restaurant scenes, editors rotating out some quality restaurants and introducing fresh names to the roster, so does this one. There's no shortage of outstanding places in every tier of every scene that help answer the question, "What is essential dining?" Still, some kitchens speak more clearly to this moment than others.
  • What Hundred-Dollar Price Hikes at Per Se and Momofuku Ko Mean for the Future of Dining: Eater's critic looks at how restaurants are raising their prices and what that means for guests.
Atlantic Spiny Dogfish


  • David Bowie's favourite place in the city he called home.  It was, according to David Bowie himself, his most favoured place in the city he came to call home.  Washington Square Park, surrounded by trees, centred by a foundation and overlooked by an archway that commemorates America’s first president, lies just a half-mile walk from the musician’s Soho home. 

  • Noho French Sleeper Le Philosophe to Close This Weekend: After service on Saturday, Amadeus Broger will shutter his Noho French restaurant, Le Philosophe. Broger and his team are not leaving the space entirely, though. In the spring the restaurant will reopen with a new identity, although no word yet on what type of food it will serve. In a message about the closure, the management notes: "We plan to re-open in the same location this spring with a new concept that we think will be really exciting."
  • Mulberry Project's Italian Spinoff Aunt Jake's to Open Later this Week: Nick Boccio, owner of Mulberry Project and Greenwich Project, will open a new casual Italian restaurant this week called Aunt Jake's. Located at 151 Mulberry, next to the Mulberry Project, it will feature Italian fare and counter service.
  • Where to Dine During NYC Restaurant Week: Winter 2016.  Il Buco Alimentari: Not content to draw the line at lunch, this utterly charming Italian restaurant & market is actually offering a $25 feast during brunch as well.  So while the midday dishes sound incredibly appealing — think Cauliflower Soup, Chocolate Budino and Strozzapreti Bolognese — why not rise and shine for the early morning menu, featuring Poached Farm Eggs with anchovies, Skate Wing with potatoes and peperoncino, and housemade Gelato and Sorbetti for dessert?

  • Breakroom Serves the Hamburger of the Future: On Baxter Street, in the shadow of the court building and above the "tombs" where the freshly incarcerated spend their first night, sits a quirky little restaurant called Breakroom.  Occupying a postage stamp sized space between a bail bond office and an acupuncturist, Breakroom reminds me of Crif Dog in the East Village, both in terms of its chaotic interior design (right down to the lack of a bathroom) and menu choices.
  • GO DOWN TO CHINATOWN ON A SHOPPING TOUR WITH CHEF ANITA LO: On a particularly cold and wet late-December afternoon, chef Anita Lo is looking for sea bass. Potato leaves, too, to finish off a mackerel dish. Her purveyor shorted her on the sea bass and the potato leaves weren’t quite the quality she requires so, as she often does, Lo biked down from her West Village restaurant, Annisa, to Grand Street in Chinatown, to hunt for them.

  • THE 11 GREATEST PIZZA PLACES IN BROOKLYN: Pizza addiction is a legit phenomenon, and objectively speaking, no city's been hit harder by the pizza epidemic than NYC. But, since we're already guilty of enabling said addiction, we figured we'd double down and bring you the 11 best pie-slinging spots in Spike Lee's favorite borough: Brooklyn.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

The Weekly Roundup: Food Trends For 2016, Sneak Peek At Penn Plaza New Food Hall and Rafele Ronca Wins Chopped

  • Eleven Madison Park Switches to Fewer Courses, More Choices: For 2016, Daniel Humm and Will Guidara switched to a gratuity-included system — dinner is now $295 per person (versus $225 last year, without gratuity included). But that's not the only big change-up that the EMP team has in store. Later this month, Humm and Guidara will introduce a brand new style of service inspired partially by classic East Harlem Italian restaurant Rao's.
  • What a Difference Daytime Makes at Sadelle’s in SoHo: Yet the kitschy daytime clamor works, while Sadelle’s stab at evening elegance hasn’t come together yet. Open since September, Sadelle’s is the first restaurant from the Major Food Group that doesn’t feel completely worked out.
    • AT SADELLE'S, AN ENGINEER MAKES THE BAGELS: When a major player in the bagel world gets into the game, New Yorkers take notice. And when Major Food Group — the guys behind Carbone, Parm, and Dirty French — open Sadelle's, a bakery-turned-brasserie featuring egg sandwiches, caviar, and house-made bagels on the menu, you’d better believe the head of their pastry and bread program works with the precision of a chemical engineer.
  • Sneak Peek: The Pennsy, a Gourmet Food Hall Opening in Penn Plaza.  A new gourmet food court called The Pennsy, opening on January 11, will shake up the dining desert that is Herald Square by offering fast-casual, chef-driven fare. Situated atop a bustling train terminal and beside Madison Square Garden, the casual 8,000-sq.-ft. space will bring the best and brightest of New York's culinary scene to commuters, happy hour goers and sports fans.
  • THE TEN BEST NEW YORK BEERS OF 2015: As of 2015, the Tri-State area is brimming with micro-breweries, dozens of which released ales and lagers worthy of inclusion here. If you are currently drawing breath within the five boroughs, congratulations: There’s never been a better time to be a craft beer fanatic than right now.
  • How Maple Plans to Become Every New Yorker’s Go-to Delivery Option: Co-founders Caleb Merkl and Akshay Navle launched Maple in April, with the help of one important backer: Momofuku's David Chang, who says he signed on because "no one’s ever taken the time to really do delivery food well." And the clearest reason for Maple's rapid success is that the food tastes really good.

  • Trader Joe’s Accused of Ripping Off Customers: A miffed group of Trader Joe's shoppers has filed a class-action lawsuit against the popular grocery chain, claiming it's under-filling tuna cans by an amount that violates federal standards. The two allegedly bum cans — Albacore Tuna in Water Half Salt and Albacore Tuna in Olive Oil Salt Added — are technically five ounces in size, but the government only requires about three ounces of fish to be in them.
  • Winemakers Are Distorting the Alcohol Content in Their Wines: A mega study of more than 127,000 bottles discovered a troubling little secret about that ABV label on the side — chances of it being wrong are crazy high. The reasons vary, the study's authors tell the Washington Post, but what's pretty constant is that this industry-wide snow job seems to have been going on for at least two decades.
  • Sad Kentucky Officials Say Recovered Pappy Van Winkle Must Be Destroyed: The Kentucky officials who heroically recovered a whole heap of stolen Pappy Van Winkle have a problem: Now there's all this grade-A whiskey lying around that people really, really want. Ever since announcing in April that they'd made several arrests and seized back 20 cases of the beloved Pappy, Franklin County sheriff Pat Melton has insisted that the prized booze be enjoyed so that "some good" could come of this mess.
  • In the Birthplace of Pizza, Pollution Rules for Ovens Spur Outrage: If there is one label that Antonio Falcone, a doctor turned civic leader, does not want to be known by, it is “the anti-pizza mayor.”  Yet that is how notoriety caught up with the mayor of this small town in the Neapolitan hinterland in late December when, in an effort to lower air pollution, Mr. Falcone issued an ordinance banning the use of wood-fired stoves not equipped with filters that reduce toxic air pollutants.


  • Au Cheval Restaurateur Brendan Sodikoff Eyes Charles Street for First NYC Project: Looks like prolific Chicago restaurateur Brendan Sodikoff, who's best known for the nationally renowned burger at Au Cheval, is making moves in NYC. A Manhattan Community Board 2 agenda for the month says that Sodikoff is applying for a liquor license at 4 Charles St. in the West Village, while his restaurant group Hogsalt is requesting a transfer at the same address. 
  • ‘Chopped’ chefs experience ‘Knife Strife’ on Food Network: The winner of the $10,000, and the "Chopped" champion was Raffaele Ronca who will donate his winnings to St. Elizabeth Seton Children’s Foundation for children born with birth defects. What a wonderful thing to do, congratulations Raffaele.

  • Gabe Stulman Is Moving Perla to West 4th Street: Gabe Stulman's four-year-old Italian restaurant Perla is getting a new home closer to its siblings Fedora, Bar Sardine, Joseph Leonard, and Jeffrey's Grocery.  Later this winter, Stulman will close his critically acclaimed Minetta Lane restaurant and move it to the space on the corner of West 4th and West 10th streets that previously housed The Windsor and Charles.

  • Food for the Future: Trends of 2016: Just as noteworthy is how poke has started to spread to non-Hawaiian places: Seamore’s, the acclaimed seafood restaurant in Nolita that opened this past summer, says its poke with ponzu sauce, peanuts and avocado has become its most popular dish.

  • Just in Time for Winter, Three New Ramen-Yas Appear Downtown:  It was inevitable that ramen parlors run by Chinese proprietors would begin opening in Chinatown. After all, ramen was inspired by la mian, and it’s natural that its originators should want to seize the noodle back and transform it yet again, turning it back upon itself like a farinaceous serpent. There have been several already, but Gen Ramen House, just down the street from Vanessa’s Dumplings, is the latest. 

Thursday, December 31, 2015

The Weekly Roundup: A Look Back On 2015 Foods, Where To Eat In 2016 and The 11 Best Hot Chocolates In NYC

  • Adam Platt’s Where to EAT 2016: Your game plan for dining (and drinking) exceptionally well, starting tonight.
  • The Best NYC Tasting Menus For $75 And Under:  Most tasting menus in this town cost as much as a down payment on a car, but a lot of fantastic restaurants offer them for $75 and well under. The next time you’re in the market for a killer meal, or just need to entertain someone for a few hours – these are the affordable tasting menus we fully endorse.
  • The Biggest Dining Surprises of 2015: This year, we asked the group eight questions running the gamut from meal of the year to top restaurant newcomers. Their answers will appear throughout the week. Responses are related in no particular order; all are cut, pasted, and (mostly) unedited herein. We've heard about the top standbys, the hot newcomers, the words of the year, and the best neighborhoods. Now it's time for the surprises of the year.

  • New Year, New Rules: New Year's resolutions from some of our favorite chefs.  Most tasting menus in this town cost as much as a down payment on a car, but a lot of fantastic restaurants offer them for $75 and well under. The next time you’re in the market for a killer meal, or just need to entertain someone for a few hours – these are the affordable tasting menus we fully endorse.
  • Picking the Best in Bean-to-Bar Chocolate: Many shops and companies melt and mold bulk chocolate they buy from firms like Valrhona and Callebaut. The Masts began doing this in Brooklyn in 2007 while teaching themselves a far more challenging skill, one that few people in the United States had yet acquired: roasting and grinding raw cacao and turning it into silky, shiny bars of dark chocolate.
  • Pastry Chef Gina DePalma Has Died: Gina DePalma, the pastry chef who earned raves for her work at Babbo in Greenwich Village, died earlier this week. The chef had been dealing with ovarian cancer for many years. On October 24, Gina shared on Twitter: "I had a very complicated cancer surgery, was in the hospital for 2 weeks, and am still down for the count."  She had another major cancer surgery in 2007.
  • Food Trends That Shaped 2015: Batali and Ducasse also worked at New York’s wastED, a temporary restaurant at Dan Barber’s Blue Hill in Greenwich Village, which involved a cast of rotating chefs addressing food waste in their menus.
    • 11 Dining Trends We’re Tired Of: Adam Platt outlines your game plan for dining (and drinking) exceptionally well in the new year. Here, he looks back on all the annoying quirks, large and small, that drive your cranky critic to distraction.


  • OMG! meals of 2015: Best of Great American Bites: John’s of Bleecker Street Pizzeria, New York: The third oldest pizzeria in New York (and the country), John’s uses a coal-fired oven to produce a hybrid American-Neapolitan pie, crisped all the way across, but not crispy, with flecks of char giving it depth of flavor, while remaining surprisingly chewy, doughy and delicious.

  • The Malt House: An elevated tavern experience in Greenwich Village.  At The Malt House, there are no gimmicks. It is an American tavern, with many of the qualities of a gastropub, but far less of the pretension that has become associated with trendy bars for foodies. The menu is populated with elevated American comfort classics, cooked to perfection, made with choice ingredients and served in a warm and timely manner.
  • Photos, Videos: Christmas Eve Caroling In Washington Square Park: Last night, people gathered in Washington Square Park to sing Christmas carols by the Arch.  The history of carols dates back to the pagan singing during solstices, but the Greenwich Village tradition is about 100+ years old. It was probably one of the warmest, most balmy Christmas Eves in recent memory, as some carolers were just wearing t-shirts.
  • ‘A Strange Story': How 160 Bleecker Went From Slum House to Bohemian Bastion.  At the end of the 19th century, Ernest Flagg had a vision. Educated in the École des Beaux-Art in Paris, the young architect came back to New York in 1890 wanting to “reform the barbaric housing standards of the day.” Then he met banker and philanthropist Darius Odgen Mills, and before long Mills House No. 1, an inexpensive hotel for working men, opened in Greenwich Village in 1897.

  • Gansevoort Market Owner Plans to Open More Food Halls in New York City: Chris Reda, owner of Gansevoort Market in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District, said he plans to open food halls in lower Manhattan and the Bronx’s Grand Concourse neighborhood.  In an interview Wednesday, Mr. Reda said his goal is to bring the gourmet-minded concept “to neighborhoods that are thriving and don’t have something like this.”

  • The 11 Best Places For Hot Chocolate In NYC: Try having your next date at the super cute, casual bar space at the front of Il Buco Alimentari. It’s the perfect spot to sip a mug of chocolatier Genevieve Meli’s (possibly spiked) hand-crafted hot chocolate made with Valrhona’s Guanaja chocolate (70 percent dark, 30 percent white, for extra creaminess). 

  • As a Christmas Surprise, Mission Chinese Food Launches Dim Sum Brunch: Danny Bowien and his crew kicked off dim sum brunch at Mission Chinese Food on Christmas Day.  Before the holiday,  Bowien told Metro: "We’re gonna have dim sum carts going around, but not with traditional dim sum....It’s gonna be Mission Chinese Food: little plates of mapo tofu, and scrambled egg and tapioca dumplings."  Bowien and MCF's executive chef Angela Dimayuga were in the restaurant, working with the carts on Christmas. 

Monday, December 28, 2015

A taste of the worlds French NYC!

Did you know that french fries are pretty popular all over the world, with each country putting their cultural stamp on the crispy classic?  There are so many varieties - from classic American fries to Poutine to Patatas Bravas - and I’ve found em right here in NYC.  So here’s your fry education for the day. Be sure to check these out on your next travel adventure abroad - or right here in New York.  And read up on my french fry crawl to find the best international iterations of this classic snack.

South Africa – slap chips
South Korea – Honey butter fries
Belgium – Frites
Canada – Poutine
Britain – Chips
France – Pommes Frites
India – Finger Chips
Spain – Patatas Bravas
Japan – Furaido Potato
California – Animal – style fries

My international fry crawl:

I took it upon myself to taste-test the many varieties of french fries that are eaten all over world. Yes, it was a hard job.  I started with the classic American route. But even this classic American approach incorporated a distinctly Italian spin.

Sticky’s Finger Joint, Greenwich Village

Sticky's Truffle Parmesean Fries

In a cozy spot on West 8th and McDougal St in the Heart of the Village Sticky’s serves up chicken and fries in (mostly) traditional American style.  But they take their chicken to the next level with their creative sauces from wasabi to salted caramel. Their fries are brilliant and they go just perfectly with chicken.  I tried one of the top selling fries on the menu, the truffle parmesan fries.  The slightly garlicky taste and earthy aroma of the truffle mixed with the light shavings of parmesan atop the warm and crispy fries was extremely delicious.  And there is a reason why it’s top selling - that I assure you.

Top Sellers for Fries:
  • Truffle Parm Fries - Truffle salt and Parmesan $5.51
  • Bacon Mac Fries – Jalapeño mac and cheese with bacon $5.51 
Three Locations - Murray Hill, Greenwich Village and soon to open Hell’s Kitchen.

Try some after your Heart of the Village food tour!

Mile End Deli, NoHo

Mile End Poutine

Feeling a chill in the air, I stopped in to Mile End Deli for a classic Canadian poutine to warm me up. Poutine, which consists of French fries (thicker cut), cheese curds and gravy, sounded a little too rich to me, but man did I like it.  Mile End Deli creates the classic Poutine with roasted chicken gravy as their saucy base.  With the gravy and cheese curds, the poutine came out perfectly hot, which kept the fries warm.  This filling dish translated to warmth and the feeling of home.  What a perfect fall/winter time snack!

In the heart of the NoHo area of Manhattan, Mile End Deli sits on Bond Street, a quiet little escape from the noise of NYC.  Poutine is served at both lunch and dinner at Mile End.

Two types of poutine offered:
• Classic (which is what I had) – fries, cheese curds, roasted chicken gravy Small $9 / Large $12
• Smoked Meat – brisket, fries, cheese curds, roasted chicken gravy          
            Small $13 / Large $16

Two Locations – Brooklyn – Boerum Hill, Manhattan – NoHo.

The Mile End in NoHo is located only a block away from where we end our Nolita/NoHo Food Tour.  A must eat if you are still hungry after the tour!

Las Ramblas, West Village

Patatas Bravas

My last stop was Las Ramblas.  Here I tried their Spanish Patatas Bravas.  Patatas Bravas is a dish native to Spain and is also one of Spain’s spiciest dishes.  Often served as tapas, the white potatoes are cut into small cubes, fried in oil and served hot with a spicy tomato or aioli sauce.

 My patatas bravas were served as small fried potato cubes with paprika sprinkled moderately and garlic aioli on top.  Between the paprika’s spiciness and the garlic aioli’s sweetness, you are left with the perfect combination of sweet & savory in your mouth.  As another tasty note, the aioli was dispersed evenly over the potatoes and reminded me of thicker gravy in consistency.

Las Ramblas has a warm atmosphere with shades of red and brown and exposed brick surrounding you.  The cozy space, perfect for wintertime consists of high top tables, a small bar and three small window seats right in front of the restaurant.  Las Ramblas authenticity and Spanish tapas really comes through in the food they serve.   I highly recommend checking it out!

Menu Items I tasted: Patatas Bravas - $8

Las Ramblas is located in Greenwich Village on West 4th St., only a block away from where our Greenwich Village Tour ends!  Check it out after one of our tours for a small bite to eat!

The last french fry is for you:  Everything you need to know about french fries.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

The Weekly Roundup: Mast Brothers Chocolate Fall Out, Last Minute Christmas Reservation Guide and Top 21 Dishes Of 2015

  • Mast Brothers Admits It Hasn't Always Made 'Bean-to-Bar' Chocolate:  Brooklyn chocolate company Mast Brothers is engulfed in a media firestorm. Following a recent exposé by a blogger intent on exposing the bearded chocolate makers as frauds, the brothers Mast have now been grilled by The New York Times — and have admitted to precisely some of the acts that they previously denied.
    • 11 Truly Acclaimed Chocolate Producers That Aren’t Mast Brothers: There is trouble in artisanal Brooklyn, what with the recent revelations that the Mast Brothers — the borough's Ur-craftsmen — are caught up in a big cocoa controversy. Maybe you're a fan who feels cheated, or one of the many people who just never liked the brothers' chocolate all that much to begin with. You are in luck: There's plenty of great craft chocolate out there, stuff that's truly delicious and covers a whole spectrum of flavors.
  • The Pennsy to Feature Food Stalls From Batali, Giuliani, Forgione, LaFrieda, and Becker:  The old Borders space at 2 Pennsylvania Plaza is getting a new food court with stalls from Marc Forgione, Mario Batali, Franklin Becker, Pat LaFrieda, and the Cinnamon Snail team. 
  • Legendary Rock Club CBGB Finally Reopening As a Restaurant in the Newark Airport: The iconic Bowery club CBGB, which closed in 2007, has lent its name to a soon-to-open restaurant in the Newark Airport. Word of this business first trickled out last fall, but as of today there are pictures to indicate it isn't a joke. 
  • The Procrastinator’s Guide to Last-Minute Christmas Reservations: Christmas is in two days. Christmas Eve is tomorrow. If you'll be in the city, and still haven't made plans for where or what you'll be eating, don't worry — Grub's done the legwork and assembled this list of top restaurants that are both open and still have room for diners tomorrow and on Christmas Day.
  • Ryan Sutton's Top 21 Dishes of 2015: Earlier this month, Eater critic Ryan Sutton argued why this was such a strong year for New York dining, and he also named his top new restaurants. Now, he reveals his list of 2015's best sweet and savory dishes. The top three creations are ambitious riffs on everyday American classics.

  • The Idiot's Guide To Pairing Wine With Cheese: Wine can be intimidating to a lot of people. Throw in the idea of pairing it with cheese and it quickly gets way too fancy. But truth be told, it's pretty simple stuff. And the best part is, many different types of wines can be paired with cheese -- there isn't just one wine for one cheese -- so it's hard to mess it up. 
  • Here’s How to Crack the Ultimate Holiday Nut: American chestnuts were all but wiped out last century, but that thankfully won’t stop you from enjoying their winter-friendly flavor.
  • The Year of Champagnes You’ve Never Heard Of: Shopping for wine often requires plunging into the unknown. That is especially true this year for Champagne, because a new wave of small grower-producers on the shelves can mystify even the seasoned wine lover: Éric Rodez, Guillaume Sergent, Suenen, Bourgeois-Diaz, for a start. Who are these guys?
  • Seafood Restaurants Cast a Wider Net for Sustainable Fish: Over the last decade or so, restaurant diners in this country have become more sophisticated about, and open to, ingredients that used to throw them for a loop: bone marrow, pork belly, sunchokes, orange wine, the ubiquitous kale.  But they’ve remained curiously conservative when it comes to seafood. Salmon, tuna, shrimp and cod, much of it endangered and the product of dubious (if not destructive) fishing practices, dominate one restaurant menu after another.


  • High Street on Hudson is Now Open with Bialys and Sandwiches: High Street on Hudson is finally selling its acclaimed baked goods and sandwiches in the West Village. The hot Philadelphia import launched on Monday at 637 Hudson St with breakfast, lunch, and a takeout counter packed with even more pastries and breads than in Philadelphia. 
    • Eli Kulp’s High Street on Hudson Opens in the West Village: High Street on Hudson The chef Eli Kulp and his partner, Ellen Yin, have created a version of one of their popular Philadelphia restaurants, High Street on Market, for New York. The outlines are the same: breakfast, lunch and dinner in a low-key, no-frills West Village setting with a retail nook for breads, pastries, sandwiches and other takeout. There are rye breads from an in-house bakery run by Alex Bois, as well as a malted sausage sandwich. 
  • The Ten Best Slices of Pizza in NYC: Joe’s Pizza serves up the quintessential New York slice. Where this eatery trumps all others is in its ability to make a classic, mozzarella cheese pie. Of course, you can always go for a multi-topping slice, but we recommend starting with the basics here. The turnover is phenomenal, meaning the 'za is always fresh here.

  • Acclaimed LA Omakase Restaurant Sushi Zo Soft Opens in New York: Sushi Zo, one of the top omakase restaurants in Los Angeles, has opened in New York with its acclaimed sushi tasting menu. The new restaurant, located in Greenwich Village at 88 West 3rd St., is listed as "soft open" on Sushi Zo's website and it's now accepting reservations.
  • Trendy Vegan Spot ‘by Chloe’ Expands with 2nd Location on Lafayette Street: Call it a case of clustering. One health food shop-slash-juicery opens at the corner of Spring and Lafayette Streets (namely, Tiny Empire and newcomer Joe & the Juice), and the bandwagoners follow suit. And with 16 Handles now out of the way, another can join the club. The latest entrant to this fray is “by Chloe,” a vegan restaurant that currently maintains a flagship at 185 Bleecker Street in Greenwich Village.

  • Creative Team Behind Gansevoort Market To Open MRKTPL Empire Outlets, Staten Island's First Artisanal Food Hall:  "As we continue to program Empire Outlets as not only a tourist destination from visitors arriving from around the world, we are thrilled to be able to bring such lifestyle expertise from Manny Del Castillo and Jamie Hinojos the Creative Director and Director of Operations from the Gansevoort Market team to our center with the addition of MRKTPL," said Joseph Ferrara, a partner with Don Capoccia and Brandon Baron at BFC Partners, Empire Outlet's developer.

  • Best Cupcakes in the U.S.:  Little Cupcake Bakeshop, NYC: This Brooklyn-born, family-owned shop honors classic NYC sweets. They make a stellar cupcake version of the Brooklyn Blackout cake (in fact, it’s tastier than 99 percent of the Blackout Cakes I’ve had). 

  • Inside the Process for Making Peking Duck: Peking or Beijing duck is one of the world’s most complex foods — both in terms of its preparation as well as its flavor. Chinese chefs have perfected a method for rendering duck skin shatteringly crisp and duck meat ethereally tender. And in addition to the thorough cooking process, the dish itself has a pretty extensive history.

  • Bushwick's Getting A Gigantic New Chain Bowling, Gaming & Dining Arena:  A shiny new 30,000-square-foot bowling and karaoke amusement complex will be opening at 199 Starr Street in Bushwick in the fall of 2017. Punch Bowl Social, a Denver-based company that runs adult funhouses in Portland, Austin, Cleveland and elsewhere, will be bringing bowling, dining and gaming to the warehouse space.

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