My favorited series highlights the restaurants, stalls, markets, and any other kinds of food purveyors that make the top of my list for the best of what they offer in this city. Bo’s Bagels was a welcome addition to the Harlem Bagel Desert, I’ve lived in for 10 years, and they do a damn fine job. They may not be the best bagels in the city, but they are my favorites.
Perhaps my attitude with this blog has been a little "lassez-faire" but alas, it was in anticipation of Bastille Day! And also there was our Independence day and the week before that I was busy with the Del Close Marathon....but that's neither here nor there. Here we are! Mid July! Let's get out, and celebrate our French allies! Or not. But go forth and eat AND drink my children!
Ma Peche, one of the Momofuku restaurants (a frequent vendor of mine), has a french name so this counts toward your Bastille celebrations! The restaurant hosts a monthly wine and cocktail class and this weekend's lesson should pique your interest! You can head to the midtown restaurant for a lesson in wine...boxed wine that is! Surprise yourself and your friends and learn the positives and negatives of boxed wine vs. bottled wine. Class is taught by noted wine writer Talia Baiocchi and will be from 5-6:30pm. Check out the eventbrite page for tickets and more information about this and the rest of the classes in the series.
I don't know about you my I have some friends in Paris right now, but sadly I can't afford such luxuries! But, have no fear if you're like me, you can escape to a French paradise all our own without a boarding pass! Check out Fete Paradiso, kicking off this weekend in time for the Bastille festivities, on Governors Island. There are beautiful carnival rides, inspired by French artists. This is the first time the traveling French fair hits the US and you can celebrate with them this weekend or next or any of them from now through the end of September, but why not go when its most festive?! Of course, I wouldn't be mentioning it if it was all rides and no food! There's word of a beer garden, and also French restaurant, Le Gamin, will be providing more traditional eats from you croque madames to steak frites!
Bastille in Brooklyn if you'd like! This year, Chez Oskar ("Le Funky French Bistro") is hosting a brunch in honor of France! If you'd rather hang in Fort Greene for France then this is the ticket! There will be a prix-fixe menu that will include champagne as well as several standard French activities...like a Robespierre photo booth, a Petanque (similar to bocce ball) tournament out back, and of course some can-can dancers! Festivities on Sunday will begin at 11am, so why not make a day of it?!
Do you like your independence days to be traditional? If so you should check out the oldest running Bastille Day festival put on by the authority that is FIAF (French Institute Alliance Francaise). Did I mention I've taken classes with them? They're great! This annual block party event offers live music, dancing, cheese tasting, and language lessons. Enjoy pastries from some of the best Franco-American chefs, including the CRONUT master: Dominique Ansel Bakery, Epicerie Boulud, and Francois Payard. Don't miss out on the Ricard cocktails and beer tastings. This is another excuse to party! All this is happening on Sunday from noon to 5 PM on E. 60th Street between Fifth and Lexington.
OK, I know what you're thinking--this was supposed to be a weekly blog, but there's hasn't been a post since before Memorial Day Weekend! I know, and I'm sorry. I don't have great excuses...I mean it was my birthday just after that and then I was busy training interns and whatnot, but still, I slacked and I'm SORRY! Especially as there's been so much going on! But, here I am! Back to giving you the SCOOP of the city's foodie happenings. Speaking of SCOOP, there's a lot of ice cream fun going on...I know, it's cheesy, but still true.
First up, an ode to Game of Thrones, and a competition all powered by you! And foursquare. Basically you have until tomorrow to visit your favorite ice cream joint and when you check in on foursquare you're to hashtag--># the following, if it's your favorite ice cream joint: #gameofcones How do you know which one to go to? Well, like I said, it should be your favorite. Whether that's Big Gay Ice Cream, Van Leeuwen Ice Cream, Il Laboratorio del Gelato, or Coolhaus you should go get some and show your love!
Speaking of Coolhaus...and free ice cream...we are now! They're running a promotion from now through the 23rd in conjunction with Showtime before the upcoming season of Dexter. FREE Coolhaus y'all! Check out their twitter: @CoolhausNY or in LA: @CoolhausLA for more details on the where and when...I went today, cuz I love Coolhaus and FREE things :) and the sammie is delicious! Vanilla Ice Cream with a Cherry sauce and the cookies represent the light and dark sides of Dexter, which means you get Double Chocolate AND Snickerdoodle, which is great for a person like me, who can't make up my mind when it comes to those awesome cookies!
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Or you could check out a brand new Ice Cream shop, called Oddfellows Ice Cream Co. that opened in Williamsburg, Brooklyn and features some yums, like tequlia cream with pineapple!
Also for tonight is a CRAB BOIL! I know! Happening on the Upper West Side (yes, the West side IS the best side) at Ditch Plains tonight and then once a month the next couple of months. So check it out while you can!
Well Friday brings us into summer as we have the longest day of the year! But, not to fret! The good people at Thrillist NY have compiled a list of activities for you to do on what they're calling the BEST DAY OF YOUR LIFE! Download the itinerary and get in on some good and sometimes free eats!
"Friday Night Bites" is what the New York Historical Society is calling this series of talks and tastes at its home on the Upper West Side, and this one is going to be good! Reps from The Morris Kitchen will be demonstrating some cocktail recipes with historic flare and homemade syrups! Best of all? It's FREE! Just check out the link for information on reservations, etc.
Satur-DAY Drinking in Brooklyn! Check out Downtown Brooklyn's Homebrewer's challenge starting before noon! You can get your tickets and find out all of the details, like the vendors and which charities they're raising money for (oh did I forget to mention your drinking bucks do good deeds?!) all at the Rally Downtown HomeBrewklyn site.
As everyone knows already, Brooklyn is the place to be. And this Saturday you can pretend you're in Brooklyn by heading to Southern Manhattan, as there are several top BK vendors showing up downtown for a great block party! Smorgasbar at the South Street Seaport is hosting The Almost Annual Big Ten Block Party which will include Sixpoint beers, Marble Hill Ice Cream and many more. Buy your tickets today!
Proud to be a New Yorker during the month of June! It is Pride month after all! And yes, I know that the pride wee refer to is "Gay Pride" (I use quotations as there are a lot more members of the community at large that are in that group of people celebrating pride) With our annual Pride parade happening next weekend, there have been several events throughout the month to celebrate equality amongst all sexual persuasions, identifications, and preferences. And to kick off the biggest, gayest week of them all is a grand old brunch this Saturday at the Mercedes Club in Hell's Kitchen. I mention Big and Gay, as the owners of the Big Gay Ice Cream Shop are going to be judging the synchronized-swimming competition. There will also be some very tasty food offerings from some heavy hitting LGBTQ chef superstars, including the great Elizabeth Falkner! And what brunch would be complete without booze? There will be plenty of Marys...bloody and otherwise as there will be queens as well. And best of all? Proceeds go to charity! Get your tix today!
Since we're on the topic of pride, it wouldn't be June without the annual Mermaid Parade in Coney Island, which almost didn't happen this year, due to lack of funds! Can you believe it?! I can't! Thankfully, due to crowdfunding, we're back on track with this fantastical event taking place on Sunday. And after the show of Mermaid love, you can grab your tickets to the Mermaid Riverboat Ball, which will include free beer and pizza from one of our vendors, Two Boots! The parade starts at 1pm and the ball at 6pm. And of course, if you'd rather keep your flippers on the land you can also attend the Drunken Mermaid Gala at the Gowanas Ballroom, also starting at 6pm.
Didn't get enough Beer or BBQ this weekend?! Well have no fear the Knights of Bruklyn, Home Brewer's Sentry, 3rd Annual Home Brew Competition is going down at The Bell House & Union Hall! The event starts at noon and your ticket includes some of that BBQ! Get in on this!
If you can't make it out to Coney Island, but you'd like to shop outdoors, then you can head to South Street Seaport Sunday and enjoy the opening of the New Amsterdam Market. Then keep coming back all summer long!
We've got a great forecast coming up so GET OUT THERE and enjoy your weekend! And of course, if you need more help, I can always take you on one of my tours! There's three, 3 to choose from!