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Thursday, March 23, 2017

The Weekly Roundup: Best Cookies In NYC, 2017 James Beard Finalists and How Much Monica's 'Friends' Apartment Would Cost Today

  • NYC Eats – Foods of New York Tours: On this trip we did a food tour through Food of New York Tours. Doug and I have done one before through a different company but this one was hands down the best company. We had Ted as our Tour Guide. We chose to do the Heart of the Village Tour.

  • Big Gay Ice Cream Is Coming To Your Bodega's Freezer: The food truck-born soft serve company packaged up their favorite flavors including the Salty Pimp and Dorothy, reimagining them as hard-pack pints a la other grocery store brands. 
  • Golden Slice Awards Hail NYC Neighborhood Pizzerias: The Golden Slice Awards were founded last year to commemorate those hard-working pizzerias in every city neighborhood. 
  • Shake Shack Is Testing Caviar Delivery: The lines at New York City burger king Shake Shack have certainly lessened since its origins in Madison Square Park, but with delivery options few, you usually need to get off your couch to get it, with the exception of this weekend: Caviar has teamed up with the Shack to offer delivery.
  • Testing the Limits of Trust, and Sushi, at Sugarfish: Sugarfish by Sushi Nozawa would like to be the answer. It’s not, but enough people believe it is, or want to believe, that getting inside this four-month-old restaurant on East 20th Street can be a test of patience.



  • This Is How Much Monica's Apartment In 'Friends' Would Really Cost: After years of watching shows like Friends one thing always left us feeling perplexed; just how could Monica and Rachel afford to live in such a huge New York apartment? Well, huge by city standards, at least.  Finally, we have the answer…
  • The 14 Best Cookies In NYC: Milk and Cookies, a cute cafe on one the West Village's prettiest streets, got its start before social media spawned its armies of food-shooting influencers. Which is maybe why the place always feels a bit under-the-radar? Either way, baker Tina Casaceli puts out a huge array of appealing cookies every day, in flavors both classic and complicated, but when I'm only getting one, I get the S'Mores. 

  • The Absolute Best Negroni in New York: Dante gets everything right. It ought to. The bar — formerly Caffe Dante, a storied Village coffee house — has fashioned itself an Italianate aperitivo-style bar. There’s a whole page of Negroni variations. The standard, served on tap, is spot on. 

  • Meatpacking District projects advance amid Landmarks approvals: Despite forceful opposition from preservationists, two major developments in the Gansevoort Market Historic District are moving forward.
  • Gansevoort Market to Open Craft Beer and Cocktail Bar, Owner Says: The owner of the Gansevoort Market plans to open a craft beer and cocktail bar inside the West 14th Street food hall.  The new Gansevoort Hall will serve tasty beverages from an approximately 12- to 14-seat bar at the back of the foodie haven, pending liquor license approval, market founder Chris Reda said.
  • The Absolute Best Pastrami in New York: Dickson’s Farmstand Meats, Like at Katz’s, the master butchers at this Chelsea Market nose-to-tail purveyor use the belly cut; and like Katz’s, the pastrami is good enough to stand by itself without the usual fixings. The beef is brined, smoked, and steamed to a gentle softness, and served in refreshingly modest quarter-pound portions. 

  • The Faces and Streets of New York’s Chinatown in the 1980s:In the early 1980s, the photographer Bud Glick worked for the New York Chinatown History Project (NYCHP) — today the Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) — capturing the lives of the neighborhood’s denizens. From intimate portraits of people in their apartments to documentary-style pictures of the activities that filled the streets, his photographs record an older generation’s experiences of Chinatown, just as it was undergoing a transformation from an influx of immigrants and young families seeking fresh futures.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

The Weekly Roundup: Best Steakhouses In NYC, Brussels Sprout Doughnuts and Lucy's Whey Says Goodbye to Chelsea Market

  • The Absolute Best Steakhouses in New York: The definition of this sacred New York dining institution has changed over the years, but the top ten on our list share certain time-honored qualities. 
  • Per Se Is Trying To Lure Millennials With Discounted Meals: Thomas Keller has launched a brand new strategy in hopes of recovering from less than stellar Per Se reviews — inviting millennials in for a discounted meal. The ultra-luxe French-Californian restaurant at the Time Warner Center has started a new program called “30-for-30 Dining Experience,” a one-night special where 30 tables are reserved for people under the age of 30. 
  • In Lower Manhattan, a Museum Dedicated to Chocolate: Eddy Van Belle has set up Choco-Story chocolate museums in Belgium, France and Mexico, and it took very little for him to convince the master chocolatier Jacques Torres that New York needed one, too. 
  • Ivan Orkin's New Pizza Could Be the Next Best Thing in NYC: Just as ramen maven Orkin — of Ivan Ramen on the Lower East Side and Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop — knows the importance of noodles to a bowl of ramen, Bergemann has taken to heart that a good pizza starts with knowing how to bake bread.

  • Get Ready for a Maple-Syrup Shortage: February’s heat wave has tricked America’s crops into thinking it’s spring — there are confused blueberries growing in Michigan, and peaches surfacing in Kentucky. But not all crops cope so well with weird weather, and one of those at risk, thanks to the crazy temperatures, is the country’s maple syrup. 
  • How the Butchers at White Gold Break Down an Entire Animal: The crew at Upper West Side restaurant and butcher White Gold deal with several whole animals a week — sometimes ten steers, five lambs, six pigs, and a whole bunch of chickens. But the space is used both as a restaurant as a butcher, meaning that room is limited to break all those animals down.
  • Just a Buck Invested in Reducing Food Waste Can Save Companies $14: Strange as it might sound, one reason that over a billion tons of food are thrown out each year is that, somehow, businesses don’t see reducing waste as cost-effective. 
  • Drugstore Candy From Around the World (That You Can Buy on Amazon).  When exploring a foreign country, there’s perhaps no easier way to take a crash course in local culture than by perusing the drugstore candy aisle, which can speak volumes about the palate and aesthetic of a place — plus, surprising sweets make the best souvenirs. In the age of internet shopping, of course, you can recreate that experience from the comfort of your own home.


  • New York Restaurateur Hans Pauli Has Died: The brand was revived with the opening of the Greenwich Village location in 2003. “Sant Ambroeus is in its element,” wrote Marian Burros, shortly after the reopening. It attracts “X-ray thin women (and men) who prefer to eat in stylish surroundings with like-minded diners.”
  • Would You Eat a Brussels Sprout Doughnut?  The Doughnut Project has done it again with its latest foray into the weird, but potentially tasty.  In partnership with chic SoHo eatery Hundred Acres, the bakery known for its Everything Bagel Doughnut, has created a Brussels sprouts, feta cheese and fire-roasted almond-topped doughnut filled with homemade fig jam and glazed with sumac.

  • Lucy's Whey Cheese Shop Leaving Chelsea Market, Owners Say: “We cannot say enough great things about our seven years in Chelsea Market,” they wrote. "Our big mission was and is to showcase something that most other cheese shops don’t: a cheese case prominently advocating for American farmstead cheese makers."

  • The Ultimate Chinatown Dumpling Crawl: When someone offers to tour you around one of Manhattan's best culinary neighborhoods, you say yes—especially when that neighborhood is Chinatown and the someone is the New York state senator who has represented the historic district for nearly a decade.  On a recent Sunday morning, we followed the very generous Senator Squadron to some of his current favorite dumpling spots, and got some buns and noodles while we were at it.
  • Jason Wang Opens Disappointing New Dumpling Spot In Chinatown: When Wang announced that he was transforming his Bayard Street restaurant into something called The Dumpling Spot (the Xi'an Famous outpost that was here can now be found in a much larger location a few storefronts away), this was obviously pretty exciting news.
  • HOW NOM WAH TEA PARLOR KEEPS OLD CHINATOWN OLD: My dad has this crazy story of swimming down from Guangzhou, China, to escape the communists and making his way to Hong Kong, where he met my mom. They came to the U.S.A. in 1974. At the time, Nom Wah Tea Parlor belonged to my Uncle Wally. He was 16 when he got here in 1950, and he started working as a dishwasher at Nom Wah. Wally ended up buying the building two decades later.

  • Dan Delaney Talks About The End Of BrisketTown, Nostalgia & Burger Obsessions.  This Sunday, Williamsburg's BrisketTown, one of the city's finest BBQ restaurants, will close. The building that has housed the restaurant since 2012 has been sold to developers, who have plans to tear it down—along with adjacent buildings. It's unclear what exactly will rise in its place, but the condo construction boom continues to scorch Williamsburg's Southside.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

The Weekly Roundup: Hot Doughnut Grilled Cheese, Xi'an Famous Foods Debuts Dumpling Restaurant and How Pizza Really Came To America

  • Major NYC Dining Influencer Steve Hanson Is Making a Comeback:Steve Cuozzo at the Post reports that Stephen Hanson — the restaurateur who founded monster hospitality group BR Guest — will be opening a new restaurant at the old Life magazine building. Hanson hasn’t opened an NYC restaurant since he sold his final stake in BR Guest in more than three years ago.
  • Where to Celebrate Mardi Gras 2017: Whether you actually intend to give something up for the season (or are merely seeking respite from your daily woes), here’s where to laissez les bons temps rouler New Orleans style, with sazeracs, po-boys and more.
  • CAN THE NYC STEAKHOUSE SURVIVE: The New York City steakhouse faces a prickly paradox. It is too old, respected, and august to die. But is it too esoteric, off-trend, and regressive to live?

  • America’s Independent Restaurants Are Closing at an Alarming Rate: This past year saw plenty of hand-wringing by restaurateurs — the industry is in recession thanks to an uptick in labor costs, consumers opting for delivery, and fears in general about the future of U.S. democracy. But a new data set from an industry tracker adds some depressing additional context, if you consider America to be maxed out on burger-flipping chains.
  • U.K. Farmers Warn Brexit Could Make Their Crops ‘Rot in the Fields’: Here’s a familiar-sounding argument: British farmers say the impending Brexit, which will reduce immigration significantly, could send their industry into a free fall, since about 20 percent of the workers in their fields are foreign. As a result, England’s largest farmer union is pleading for a trade deal that allows not just access to the rest of Europe’s market, but also the ability to employ Europe’s workers.
  • This Is the Correct Way to Make a Perfect Manhattan: Look, not everyone has to have their home bar fully stocked at all times with all sorts of obscure mezcals and expensive bottles of Scotch and specialty bitters. But if you’re going to be an adult, and you’re going to drink alcohol, there are a few cocktails that you really must know how to make.


  • Brace Yourself For The Brand New Doughnut Grilled Cheese: This combination of melted cheese and sweet doughy deliciousness will soon be available at Clinton Hall, a craft beer hall in Manhattan's Financial District. The special sandwich was created in partnership with The Doughnut Project, a small-batch doughnut shop in the West Village. The product of this dream collab is what Clinton Hall is calling "The Flamin Hot Doughnut Grilled Cheese."

  • Le Pain Quotidien Unveils its Second Bleecker Street Outpost: Le Pain Quotidien just planted another flag downtown. The Belgian-style bakery is poised to open its umpteenth city location in the kink of Bleecker Street, where American Apparel previously outfitted NYU students. Now it’ll fatten them up.
  • Australians Open New Cafe In Greenwich Village: Banter, at 169 Sullivan St. just north of West Houston Street, is owned by Sydney native Nick Duckworth and Melbourne native Josh Evans, who moved to New York 18 months ago and met working at the Australian cafe Two Hands in Nolita.

  • THE ABSOLUTE BEST DUMPLINGS IN NYC: Italian-born pasta and sauce company, Giovanni Rana, is like the Willy Wonka of pasta, churning out unexpected flavors like red lentil spaghetti and chili and garlic infused pappardelle daily in its part-factory part-restaurant inside Chelsea Market. The place’s signature dessert -- ravioli made with dark chocolate -- is a childhood fantasy come true.

  • The Untold Story of How My Grandfather Brought Pizza to America: We examined the relationship between Lombardi’s—believed to be the first U.S. pizzeria to open, in 1905—and Totonno’s, which was opened in 1924 by the man credited as Lombardi’s first pizza chef. Antoinette Balzano, the granddaughter of Totonno, who now runs Totonno’s along with her siblings, felt there was some information she wanted to add about her grandfather’s legacy.

  • Xi’an Famous Foods Team Debuts a New Dumpling Restaurant: The masterminds behind popular local noodle chain Xi’an Famous Foods just opened a completely new restaurant in their old Chinatown space: Dumpling Spot, a fast-casual restaurant focusing on, as the name suggests, dumplings. The new restaurant is in soft opening at 67 Bayard St. The outpost of Xi’an Famous Foods formerly in that storefront moved to a bigger space at 45 Bayard St. last week.

  • Hot Neighborhood: 8 New Places to Eat Near Barclays Center in Brooklyn.  The area around the Barclays Center is abuzz with new and exciting places to eat. There’s already a food hall (with another, Dekalb Market, planning to open soon), a dine-in theater, plenty of spots to enjoy handmade pasta and even more in the works — including an outpost of the fast-casual Korean spot, Korilla BBQ, and an all-day cafe named Hudson Jane. Here are the latest spots in and around Fort Greene that you should be checking out now. 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

The Weekly Roundup: Foods Of NY Tours On The Travel Channel, Best NYC Restaurants For Every Budget and Danny Meyer Opens Daily Provisions

  • Travel Channels Cool Jobs Series:Check out tour guide Raheem and our Chinatown tour featured on Travel Channels “Cool Job Series”!
  • GETAWAY: GOURMET FOOD TOURS.  Nothing gives you a greater understanding of a city or country than by indulging in its food. Foods of New York Tours document the influence of generations of immigrants; walk through the various neighborhoods of New York City and try hand-made Italian pasta and cannoli, Polish kielbasa sausage or experience the hustle of Chinatown as you snack on a traditional Chinese pastry. 

  • These Are New York City’s James Beard Semifinalists: The James Beard Foundation has released the semifinalists for the 2017 Restaurant & Chef James Beard Awards. On March 15th, the list will be narrowed down to the finalists for all award categories during a press conference at Suzanne Goin’s A.O.C. in LA. 
  • Guide to New York Beer Week 2017: Whether you’re a fanatical homebrewer or just a sometime imbiber, who wouldn’t want to lose themselves in the bottom of a pint glass for nine straight days?  Thanks to New York Beer Week — an annual, out-out celebration of suds — there’s an opportunity to do just that, through tap takeovers, festivals, pairing dinners and more!
  • THE ABSOLUTE BEST ITALIAN RESTAURANTS IN NYC: These restaurants, many of which are helmed by women with extensive experience in Italy, look across the Atlantic for inspiration to deliver seasonal, ingredient-driven, conservatively portioned (and ideally digestible; in Italy, this is a prerequisite for a successful meal) dishes to the city's tables.
  • Danny Meyer Serving Up Sandwiches & Doughnuts In New Spot Next To Union Square Cafe: The re-opening of Danny Meyer's beloved Union Square Cafe, just a few blocks up and over from its location of 30 years, has definitely been a glittering highlight of this winter restaurant season. If, that is, you feel comfortable dropping $27 for a plate of pappardelle. But now there's good news in Meyerland for those of us of more modest means: the recent unveiling of Daily Provisions, a coffee- doughnut- sandwich-shop located right next door to (and sharing the kitchen with) the new mothership.



  • A Dumpling Master is Now Cooking at a New Soho Restaurant: Talk to any self-respecting dumpling snob about xiao long bao, and you’ll inevitably land on the subject of Din Tai Fung. The Taiwan-founded chain has maintained a sterling reputation while spreading the soup-dumpling gospel from Indonesia to Los Angeles, even earning a Michelin star at two Hong Kong locations along the way. You can’t blame first-time restaurateur Sean Tang, then, for taking advantage of family connections to poach a veteran chef from the chain to run Pinch Chinese, a new restaurant opening in Soho tonight.

  • The Best Restaurants for Every Budget in New York City: Inexpensive: Los Mariscos; This Chelsea Market sibling to Los Tacos No. 1 (actually voted Zagat's no. 1 taco in NYC this past year) focuses on Mexican seafood unlike its meaty counterpart, including fish and shrimp tacos ($3–$3.50), ceviche ($4–$6), aguachiles and a raw bar, supplemented by libations like palomas, margaritas ($12 each), aguas frescas and more. 

  • In Chinatown, a Go-To Thai Grocery: Mr. Pongsopon is accustomed to specific, and sometimes desperate, customer requests. His bright and tiny store, next to a dumpling stand on blocklong Mosco Street in Chinatown, is a standby for people passionate about Thai food, including some of the city’s top chefs.
  • Chinatown’s Lalo Keeps Its Sense of Humor: In 2016 the bearded and mustachioed chef from San Diego left El Rey, vowing to start his own restaurant. He traveled to Europe and Mexico first, then opened Lalo in Chinatown, supplanting what had been a battered but much-loved karaoke tavern. 

  • Why Brooklyn’s Take Root Will Close at the Peak of Success: Take Root — a tiny, one-of-a-kind restaurant in Carroll Gardens that has 12 seats, one Michelin star, and only two staffers: chef Elise Kornack and her wife, Anna Hieronimus. On March 17, they will permanently close their four-year-old restaurant, but it’s a decision that they’ve made from a position of strength — business is better than ever. 
  • Where To Eat In Crown Heights & Prospect Heights: Crown and Prospect Heights make up the area south of Bed-Stuy and north of Flatbush. Look at a map. It’s a big area - and there’s a lot to eat. Soul food, Caribbean, Korean, and more. Much more, actually. But if we listed every type of food you could find out there, it would be a long, boring list, and you’d resent us for making you read it. Read this guide instead. It has 22 places where you'll like what you eat and have a good time.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Travel Channels Cool Jobs Series

When being asked to be apart of Travel Channels Cool Job Series, we were on board right away!

Check out this episode of Cool Jobs as the Travel Channel follows tour guide Raheem through the ever evolving Chinatown during his tour!

 Raheem has been a tour guide with Foods of New York Tours for over 10 years and continues turn people onto Chinatowns most amazing eats on a weekly basis.

Food lover, people lover and history buff, Raheem truly loves his job and does consider it one of the "Coolest Jobs" around.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Foods of New York Tours on Cake Boss

Foods of New York Tours on Cake Boss 

This past year Cake Boss teamed up with us at Foods of New York Tours to create a Dumpling Cake for tour guide Raheem's Birthday! 

Raheem has been a tour guide with Foods of New York Tours for 10 years now! He has been leading our Chinatown Tour for years.  Because this tour is so special to him and because Cake Boss was interested in creating an all Dumpling Cake, we decided to share the event to create a special Birthday celebration for Raheem! 

Check out the Episode of Cake Boss here! Cake Boss & Foods of New York Tours

More information regarding our Chinatown tour here: Chinatown Food Tour

Thursday, February 9, 2017

The Weekly Roundup: Murray's Cheese Sold To Kroger, 60 NYC Cheep Eats and The History Of Marshmallow Fluff

  • 12 Restaurants Where Your Valentine’s Day Dinner Will Actually Be Good: New Yorkers are resolved to head out into this annual minefield of heart-shaped pizzas, prix-fixe meals, and cheesy chocolate sweets. Some restaurants, however, resist the temptation to go Hallmark, and keep their normal menus — all the better, because that’s what customers really want. Here, 12 places sticking to their usual routine for Valentine’s Day.
  • Bourdain Doesn’t Want His Big NYC Market to Be Just For ‘Gringos’: For one, he doesn’t want it to be a place only for food world obsessives (including the “Eater-reading cognoscenti”), American-born Asians, and “gringos.” He wants street food that will also draw Asian-born locals who want to eat like they do at home.
  • 60 Cheap Eats Destinations You Should Know About in NYC: As restaurant prices continue to soar, finding a cheap restaurant meal becomes more of a priority. And if the inexpensive feed is not only delicious but also interesting, and maybe even outside your previous dining experience, all the better. From time to time, I post about cheap restaurants I’ve stumbled on in the five boroughs and adjacent metropolitan areas, devoting a paragraph or two to each and making a few menu recommendations. Here is a collection of those restaurants, listed alphabetically.
  • Artisanal Twinkies and Fish-Shaped Ice Cream Cones Battle for Your Instagram Post at This Dessert Festival: Prepare for a festival highlighting dollhouse desserts and Instagrammable treats as Dessert Goals returns to New York for a second run. The dessert-themed gathering, which will take place on March 25th and 26th, comes from founders Miraya Berke and Liang Shi, who reportedly sold-out last year’s event in 10 minutes.

  • Dominique Ansel Will Expand His Empire to Los Angeles: Since riding Cronuts to international pastry fame, Dominique Ansel has opened Dominique Ansel Kitchen in New York, complete with a dessert-tasting menu upstairs, and taken his company across waters to London and Tokyo. But he’s so far limited his fondant influence in the United States to New York. That will change later this year, when Ansel expands to Los Angeles with a branch of Dominique Ansel Bakery and his first full-service restaurant.
  • How Does a Neighborhood Restaurant Keep Locals Happy After Receiving National Acclaim?  Olmsted, a 50-seat spot in Prospect Heights that Baxtrom conceived as a neighborhood restaurant, is actually on a similar trajectory to Rose’s — topping countless lists of openings in 2016. While this is, of course, exciting for both of these chef-owners, it also poses a challenge: How do you stay true to your local, regular customers — operating the restaurant in a way that’s accessible and relaxed — while still catering to diners who may have flown in for dinner? If a sense of warmth and intimacy is critical to your success, how do you expand? Here, they explain.
  • 11-Hour Lines for a New Ale? Fans Wait, Breweries Worry: The fan base for these special-edition ales has been growing since the early 2010s, creating excitement and a new revenue stream for the craft-beer business. But the waiting lines for each new release have become so unwieldy that many brewers are taking steps to contain or manage them.
  • The Sweet, Gooey History of Marshmallow Fluff: Peer into a kid’s lunchbox anywhere in America and you’re likely to find one of a few classic sandwiches: As food trends come and go, ham and cheese and peanut butter and jelly remain enduringly popular year after year. In New England, though, such a search is just as likely to turn up a fluffernutter, the sweet pairing of peanut butter and Marshmallow Fluff slathered on white bread that’s long been a favorite in the region’s lunchrooms.


  • Murray’s Cheese bought by grocery giant Kroger Company: The bespoke Bleecker St. cheese shop that's catered to locals for more than 75 years was sold to grocery chain giant Kroger Company, the Daily News has learned.
  • Julieta Ballesteros Adds Spice to the West Village with Tavo: Julieta Ballesteros is one of the most accomplished Mexican chefs in NYC, having helped open Mexicana Mama back in 1998, and gone on to launch Crema, Los Feliz and La Loteria besides.  But while she’s considered a master of flavors from her hometown of Monterrey, she’s also known for infusing globally-inspired influences throughout her cooking, as with her 2012 project, China Latina.
  • The Cornelia Street Cafe: Nearing 40, And In Need of Help: The Cornelia Street Cafe which opened its doors in July 1977 needs your help.  In 1998, the Cafe was one of the restaurants recognized by GVSHP with one of our annual Village Awards presented to “Cornelia Street Restaurants”.  

  • America's Best Vegan Restaurants: By CHLOE, New York, This counter service Greenwich Village gem has become one of the most popular restaurants in New York since it opened less than a year ago. Co-founders Chloe Coscarelli and Samantha Wasser are serving some truly inspired creations there
  • First Look: DŌ, a Dessert Shop Where Cookie Dough Dreams Come True.  After two years of ecommerce sales, Kristen Tomlan, founder and CEO of DŌ, has brought her cookie dough confections to a brick-and-mortar shop in Greenwich Village. Serving scoops of handcrafted, safe-to-eat raw cookie dough (featuring a pasteurized egg product and heat-treated flour) and other cookie-themed treats, the opening has been well-received by dessert lovers in NYC, with lines of customers down the block despite freezing temperatures.

  • A Hip Cafe by Women, for Everybody: As the saying goes, Too many cooks in the kitchen spoil the broth. But not at De Maria, a stylish new restaurant on the edge of NoLIta. “Even though we are all very new friends, it was very clear from the start that we all shared a common aesthetic and vision, both in design and a way of providing thoughtful dining experiences,” offers De Maria’s culinary director and executive chef Camille Becerra. Her collaborators comprise a mostly female group of creatives and trailblazers from various industries.

  • Cajun, Far From Home, at the Gumbo Bros: Adam Lathan, the chef of the Gumbo Bros, lays no claim to the one true gumbo. “I can’t make it like your grandmother did,” he said apologetically. “I’ll try my best.”  The restaurant is in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn, but its red sign was painted by hand on Magazine Street in New Orleans. Inside, a golden football helmet with a fleur-de-lis overlooks portraits of Napoleon, hand thrust inside waistcoat, and the blues pianist James Booker, called the Bayou Maharajah, in eye patch and halo.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

The Weekly Roundup: 10 Must Try NYC Chicken Wings for Superbowl, Naples's Best Pizza Maker Lands On The Bowery and 12 Restaurants to Ring In The Chinese New Year

  • Union Square Cafe’s Next-Door Takeaway Shop Opens This Friday: When Danny Meyer found a new home for Union Square Cafe, the lease included the space next door. And so what had been Duke’s Original Roadhouse is now Daily Provisions, a takeout shop and café serving breakfast and lunch, with plans for dinner come spring. 
  • New City Council Bill Would Require Letter Grades on New York’s Food Carts: Lamb over rice is one step closer to being certified as sanitary as well as halal. The Daily News says Queens councilwoman Karen Koslowitz will formally introduce a bill today requiring New York City food trucks and carts to display letter grades. 
  • Madison Square Garden Buys Massive Stake in Clubstaurant Juggernaut Tao Group: It’s a good time to be in the business of building five story-tall buddha statues, or making sparklers that you can stick in the tops of Champagne bottles. The company that owns Madison Square Garden, the Knicks, and Radio City Music Hall in NYC is joining forces with the operators of some of America’s most profitable nightclubs and clubstaurants.
  • The Absolute Best Poke Bowl in New York: Poke, a dish traditionally made with fresh raw fish and toppings like onions and seaweed, has been popular in Hawaii for decades. But in the past year or so, the poke bowl’s fandom in New York has exploded, and poke has moved from something you’d see once in a blue moon to the most popular “food concept” in the city. 

  • Late to the Game, Football Stadiums Aim for Better Food: As another Super Bowl nears, the Vikings, with a few other teams in the National Football League, are leading a charge to upgrade food in the tradition-bound world of football stadium concessions, one of last big captive markets to address the broadening culinary sensibilities of fans.
  • Can Mom-and-Pop Pizzerias Be Modernized? How one entrepreneur is bringing new customers to old-fashioned restaurants.
  • Rao’s Owner Frank Pellegrino Sr. Has Died: Charles Rao opened Rao’s in 1896 — the historic Harlem restaurant that’s arguably the most exclusive place in New York — but it was Frank Pellegrino Sr. (his nephew) who transformed it into what it is today.
  • How Restaurants Literally Stay Warm in Winter: Some cities prefer one style over others. Those acrylic and vinyl vestibules have often been a fascination in New York City, where they’re ubiquitous, but you’re not likely to see many in, say, Toronto or DC. But why? How do restaurants strategize against the cold weather?


  • After 17 Years, This 3-Star Chef’s Closing Her Restaurant Because It’s ‘Grow or Die’: As she told the Times, her real-estate taxes, coupled with the new minimum-wage law, creates too large of a burden to bear, so she’ll close her beloved West Village restaurant in May. But it’s more than just a financial decision — Lo has literally worked herself to the bone. Here, she explains.
  • The New Chumley’s Raises the Culinary Bar: If you heard that Chumley’s is open again, you were misinformed. The dim, spare, beer-scented hideaway in the West Village is gone, torn down, not coming back. At its old address is a restaurant that has nothing in common with the original except a name, a door, an archway and framed photographs of, and jackets of books by, writers who used to drink there. Most of them wouldn’t be able to afford a cocktail there now, let alone dinner.

  • NYC Just Opened A Cookie Dough Cafe And It’s Exactly What We Need Right Now: The shop serves up raw, ready-to-eat dough that’s safe to eat on its own — because the dough is made with pasteurized eggs (i.e., no salmonella here!) and served slightly chilled.
  • Inside Cafe Wha?, The Legendary Club Where Hendrix & Springsteen Performed: Some of the most important music in American history has been played in a dark, narrow basement club off MacDougal Street known the world over as Cafe Wha. Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, and Bruce Springsteen have performed on its stage, and Beat poet legends like Kerouac and Ginsberg have burned the midnight oil sitting in its snug booths. Nowadays, the place still swings, thanks in large part to a cover band of ace musicians that sets the room ablaze five night a week. 
  • 10 Must-Try Chicken Wings Around NYC: For those seeking out serious barbecue check out this newly minted Greenwich Village offshoot of Brooklyn’s Pig Beach. The barbecue chicken wing "lollipops" are fried to crispy perfection and slathered in zesty Hatch pepper vinegar and kicky housemade Alabama white barbecue sauce.  

  • Five Outrageous Feasts to Order for Your Super Bowl LI Party: Michael Solomonov’s famed Philly import is offering a lamb shoulder spread that feeds up to eight people. The roasted lamb shoulder comes with Moroccan carrots, twice-cooked eggplant, freshly baked pita, hummus, and Persian rice with barberries and pistachios. The feast costs $260 and is available for pickup from 10:00 a.m. until noon and 4:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m.
  • Creamline’s Second Store is a Sweet Addition to Seventh: “Our guests at Chelsea Market are typically very international. We’re very proud of that. Sure, locals go there; but we wanted to see how the locals jump on the train with us, and so far its just been fantastic,” Mayer-Selinger said, adding that most of the customers on Seventh Ave. have been locals.

  • Saxon + Parole And Public Will Soon Serve The Bleeding Veggie Burger: Two more New York restaurants are hopping on the bleeding veggie burger train. Chef Brad Farmerie will be adding burgers made out of the plant-based product from Impossible Foods to the menus of his downtown hit Saxon + Parole and Michelin-starred Public this week.
  • Naples’ Most Famous Pizzaiolo Will Open a Pizzeria on Bowery and More Intel: Neapolitan pizzaiolo, Gino Sorbillo is opening a pizzeria at 334 Bowery, reports Bowery Boogie. “News of his arrival on the Lower East Side came through Community Board 2, as Sorbillo seeks full liquor privileges for the establishment.” One of Italy’s most public food figures, Sorbillo became famous for his oversized, soft-crust, incredibly light Neapolitan pizza topped with high-quality ingredients that’s so otherworldly good, it draws hours-long crowds in his hometown. 
    • Naples’s Best Pizza Maker Is Loved and Hated for Good Reason: Number 32 on this street is home to La Pizzeria Sorbillo, Naples’s best and most famous pizza hub. Pizza-master Gino Sorbillo has garnered a long list of awards (his most recent accolade comes from the championship of Neapolitan Pizza). When he’s not flipping pies, Sorbillo is traveling around the world making appearances on cooking shows, explaining his ethos on perfecting Neapolitan pizza. 
  • At America’s Oldest Cheese Shop, Tony Danza Commands Your Attention: So it is not surprising that I never noticed the Alleva Dairy cheese shop snuggled at the intersection of Mulberry and Grand Streets; according to friends of mine who have been visiting the shop since the ‘80s, I’d been missing out.

  • NYC's 5 Best Buffets: If you’re with a group of 10 or more people, you can help yourself to a dim sum all-you-can-eat dining experience at Nom Wah Tea Parlor. There’s no limit to how many refills you can get on ten of Nom Wah’s most beloved dim sum dishes, and to top it all off, the beer and wine are also bottomless.
  • With Lalo, Gerardo Gonzalez Brings a Taste of San Diego to Chinatown: Few chefs have embraced the challenges of a tiny kitchen the way Gerardo Gonzalez did at Nick Morgenstern's El Rey Coffee Bar and Luncheonette, the cozy Lower East Side café he turned into a destination for designer avocado toast. 
  • 12 Restaurants Where You Can Ring In the Chinese New Year Deliciously: The Chinese New Year is this Saturday, when the Year of the Rooster will be ushered in. Along with the festivities in neighborhoods like Chinatown and Flushing, where the crowds will be humongous, you’ll find plenty of restaurants celebrating the holiday. Some are opting to go all-in with banquet-style menus, while others are serving special dim sum, noodles, and, of course, chicken dishes. Here, 12 places to ring in the Rooster.

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