Posts for April 6, 2012

Kanye West and Kim Kardashian Date Across Town; Cameron Diaz Hits Salinas

OMG!!Photo: Jackson Lee / Splash News

Well, there you have it, world: Kanye and Kim are a thing. Some may say their uncontrollable egos spell disaster down the road, but why be so pessimistic? Maybe they are the perfect match — after all, Kim is one of the special five people Kanye follows on Twitter. Anyway, the hot "couple" (can we call them that yet?) not only dined at Cafeteria last night, but had a follow-up date this morning. We know what that means ... Other celebrities did some stuff with food this week too, like Cameron Diaz attending a private dinner at Salinas, but really, does anyone care? Kanye and Kim! Kayim? Kimye? KK? Details and more celebrity sightings, straight ahead.

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Yep, Those Are Brooklyn-Made Peeps

Is there nothing Brooklyn won't Brooklyn-ize? Greene Grape Annex in Fort Greene has its own homemade Peeps for sale. (The team is working on a homemade Cadbury Creme Egg, too.) They'll cost you a dollar each and they'll be available through the weekend.

Your Olive Oil Was Probably Cut With Corn Oil

Sometimes when packages say "100% Pure ___" they only mean 85 percent pure, or something like that, according to a new report commissioned by the Department of Homeland Security and reported on in the April issue of the Journal of Food Science. Food fraud, or the use of adulterants to dilute and cut corners in common food products, is more widespread than most of us know, and the study lists the products that are most commonly, and illegally, adulterated without our knowledge: olive oil, orange juice, milk, honey, coffee, and saffron.

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A Pop-Up Taiwanese Night Market; Ryanair Tells Flight Attendants to Lose Weight

• On April 13, 87 Lafayette Street transforms into a Taiwanese night market featuring Iris Cafe, Chinatown Ice Cream Factory, and more. Tickets range from $35 to $50. Find more details and tickets here. [Grub Street]

• Irish airline Ryanair, known for its low-cost flights, told its overweight flight attendants that they need to cut fat to help cut fuel costs. Ouch. [NYDN]

• The James Beard Foundation is partnering with Silversea Cruises to host a "twelve-day culinary voyage" with chef Martin Yan in September, from Beijing to Tokyo, featuring classes, lunches and dinners, and more. For reservations, call 800-729-7472, extension 217 or via e-mail at pauline@pisabrothers.com. [Grub Street]

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Waitress Gets to Keep $12,000 Tip That May or May Not Be Drug Money

Simoleons

Waiting tables can feel like a little like playing the lottery; one day a customer bounces on the bill, the next Jay-Z's giving you $50,000 for a tip, right before four customers stomp you for bringing them the wrong plate. So went the shifting fortunes for Minnesota waitress Stacy Knutson this week, who was left a to-go box stuffed with $12,000 in cash by a customer at Fryn' Pan, apparently as a tip. But then Knutson did a silly, if honorable thing, and reported the cash, wadded and wrapped in different denominations, to the police.

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Holy Mole: Móle’s Fourth Location Now Open on the UES

The dining room.Photo: Courtesy Móle.

Husband-and-wife restaurateurs Nick Cervera and Guadalupe Elizalde have brought their Mexican mini-chain, Móle, to the calorie-starved Upper East Side. As at every Móle, the menu reflects family recipes from Elizalde's upbringing in Mexico City — in fact, certain sauces are still made by the chef's mother, who sends them to NYC every month. This location has a 200-year-old wooden bar and exposed-brick walls hung with black-and-white photos of Mexico City, taken by Cervera. See a photo of the bar, and check out the menu, straight ahead.

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Frej Is Growing Like Weeds

"We need our own space. It's a ramen spot, a gallery, a DJ venue right now. Yesterday my shoes were thrown out." — Fredrik Berselius on the ups and downs of their flourishing makeshift restaurant, Frej. [Eater NY]

What to Eat at Thirty Acres, a Momofuku Vet’s Jersey City Digs, Opening Tonight

The spot's named after a twenties boxing arena.Photo: Hugh Merwin

Looks like that Kickstarter campaign worked: Tonight, former Momofuku Noodle Bar chef de cuisine and Craft vet Kevin Pemoulie will open the doors of Thirty Acres, his 40-seat Jersey City spot. Will the restaurant be able to do for Jersey City what a place like M. Wells did for Long Island City? Perhaps. The menu (which you can see below) is heavy on local seafood, and includes dishes like pan-fried skate with Old Bay–braised cabbage; grilled swordfish with ramps and salsa verde; and duck-fat-confited fingerling potatoes mixed with double-smoked bacon, a spoonful of crème fraîche, and chives. Only one thing on the menu (the swordfish) costs more than $20, which might be reason enough to spring for a ticket on the PATH train.

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Kosher Pet Food for Passover, for Presumably Jewish Pets

Not kosher.

If your puppy's name is Yonah Schimmel and your fish looks like Jerry Seinfeld, sounds like Science Diet is your safest bet for pet food starting today — or so says a Diary entry in the Times by a woman who noticed a peculiar sign at Petland Discounts on the Upper West Side. Oddly enough, "frozen shrimp" is on the "okay" list. [NYT]

What to Eat at Parish Hall, Serving Lunch Now and Dinner Beginning Next Week

George Weld of Egg has a new one in the 'burg, Parish Hall. It's open for lunch now, with dinner service beginning next Friday, the 13th (!). Weld tells us the seasonal menu from chef Evan Hanczor is "more free-ranging and inventive" than the cooking at always-jammed Egg, with flavors that are "a little bit more subtle, using a lot more herbs." Think food like a lamb loin with nasturtium pesto and carrot sauce (see more, including some delicious-sounding sandwiches, in a sample lunch menu below). Coming up for dinner, Hanczor has been playing with similar plates, including one with pork, kale, rutabaga puree, coffee, and beets. The space is half open for now, and a back dining room will bow in the middle of May. See photos straight ahead.

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Milk & Honey Headed to Murray Hill [Updated]

The new location.

Look what's popped up on the SLA's website: A liquor license app from Sasha Petraske and Co. You'll recall Milk & Honey is moving to make way for a spot called Attaboy at the current LES location. Where is it moving? According the app, the new location is 154 E. 33rd St., right next to the 2nd Ave Deli. (Looks like the group went before CB6 last month, after earlier trouble in January.) No word on when it will open — or what the reservation number will be once it does — but Murray Hill residents should nevertheless start getting ready for classy cocktails in their neighborhood. [SLA]

Update: The location won't be Milk & Honey after all. It will be a Little Branch extension called Middle Branch. Milk & Honey is headed to 23rd Street.

Earlier: Milk & Honey Makes Way for Attaboy

Jacques Pépin on Catching Frogs With Jacques Torres, Craving HoJo

Pépin will take HoJo over spherification any day.

Grub Street had the pleasure of speaking with chef Jacques Pépin at a party on the Upper East Side for the upcoming University Settlement gala dinner on April 24, for which the longtime culinary legend will cook with Jacques Torres. What will he make? Lamb, though "if it was for Easter, I would do rabbit," he told us mischievously. "I do Easter rabbit — but with chocolate, for my granddaughter." Speaking of co-chef Torres, "last summer Jacques Torres and my friend Jean Claude were in my pond [in Connecticut] at midnight, grabbing for frogs." Catch any? "Yes, we cooked them the next day. I take the skin off, drench them in flour, sauté with oil and butter, and finish with parsley and garlic; that’s the old, old-fashioned way."

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America Wins: We Now Drink More Wine Than Anyone Else

For the second straight year, the U.S. beat out Italy and France for the most wine bottles bought, a whopping, headache-inducing grand total of 4 billion bottles, or about one case per person. Now, this doesn't make us the biggest per capita winos in the world, or even the biggest per capita alcohol consumers — those titles go to Luxemburg and the Czech Republic, respectively.

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Austin’s Alamo Drafthouse Cinema-Restaurant Chain Is NYC-Bound

The days of sneaking your own food into the movies may be on the wane: The Times learns that awesome Austin-based theater-cum-restaurant chain Alamo Drafthouse will open in New York. (You might remember the company's "no texting" ad that went viral last summer.) Alamo will take over the former Metro theater on Broadway near 90th, with five screens and at-seat ordering of food and drinks. They'll show new releases and themed nights, like they do in Austin; look for an opening next year. Two cinemas in New York, the Nitehawk and Indie Food & Wine, have kicked off the food-at-the-movies trend; soon popcorn will be totally passe. [ArtsBeat/NYT]

The Feeding Tube: The Anthony Bourdain Brand

Bourdain.Photo: Sean Mathis/WireImage

As No Reservations gears up to launch its eighth season this Monday, it's become clear that the show's host, Anthony Bourdain, is no longer simply a talking head. He's become as responsible as anyone for shaping the world of food in America, whether it’s ushering in the era of the pork overload or inciting legions of hipsters to wax poetic about street food. He has transcended the role of TV personality to become an opinion leader: He has his own book imprint with Ecco and he writes Treme episodes with David Simon. He's the human Approval Matrix of the food world, a high-low cultural arbiter with a persona that's designed — some would say consciously — to stir the pot.

"I don’t think about the audience." »

Lucky Rice Festival Founder Danielle Chang Mixes Gin and Penicillin, Is ‘Addicted’ to Sichuan Peppercorns

Chang at one of her Soho lunch haunts, Giorgione.Photo: Melissa Hom

This is a busy month for Lucky Rice founder Danielle Chang. The Asian food festival, now in its third year, runs May 1 through 6, with events like a Chiang Mai dinner with Pok Pok's Andy Ricker and the Grand Feast tasting at the Mandarin Oriental. The past week found her running around — to L.A. and Vegas to talk festival expansion — and to walk-throughs and photo shoots here in New York. Yet the mom to two daughters ages 6 and 8 still found time for meals with her family. And though she tells us, "I usually save Sundays for my kids," the day's routine was sidetracked by an epic Chinese feast. Chang was recovering from strep throat, and she informed us that it's okay to mix cocktails and penicillin. "I think it’s a myth that you can’t drink on antibiotics. I got the kind of off-the-record story from my doctor." Good to know! Read about the rest of her drinking and eating in this week's New York Diet.

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