Posts for May 3, 2012

Tavern 29 Bows in NoMad; Vandaag to Open Weenie Window This Weekend

•Even urban farmers need a little TV romance. Alejandro Velez, a San Francisco urban farmer and co-founder of Back to the Roots, which produces $20 kits to grow mushrooms indoors, will be one of the 25 men competing on the upcoming season of the Bachelorette. [Inside Scoop SF]

•The new Chipotle at 71 Spring Street is now serving, full liquor license and all. [Bowery Boogie]

Vandaag will serve wieners out of a window starting this weekend. That's right — Wurstelstand on the 6th Street side will include minced pork, pickled beef, and boudin blanc links. [Eater NY]

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No Starving Artists at Frieze New York

Rich collectors are working up quite an appetite at Frieze New York, where Frankies Spuntino, Fat Radish, and Roberta's have pulled off quite a food program over on Randall's Island. [Art Info]

Ass-Licking Zookeeper Saves the Day in Peanut Catastrophe

A Chinese zookeeper relieved his constipated monkey — who accidentally ate a peanut — by, what else, licking its tuchus. Granted it would not have been as much fun, but maybe Mister Monkey could have just had a Fig Newton. [Gawker]

Here’s Wylie Dufresne’s New wd~50 Tasting Menu

The dining room.Photo: Kenneth Chen

We learned earlier this week that Wylie Dufresne, a.k.a. the Susan Lucci of the Beard awards, would soon overhaul the entire menu at wd~50 in favor of a tasting-menu-only approach and, well, here's the menu. Diners will get thirteen courses for $155, and drink pairings, which are always inspired here, are an extra $85.

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Red Hook Rising

The new Pok Pok Ny isn't exactly in Red Hook, but it's close enough to have brought some attention to the out-of-the-way area of late. Now Brooklyn Based brings word of some other exciting new developments in Kings County's seafaring village of a hood: It seems that charming Botanica is set to reopen next week with food from none other than ... Saul Bolton of Saul and the Vanderbilt, who also happens to be one of the borough's handful of Michelin-starred chefs. The Latin-leaning menu is described as “Meta-Caribbeana.” Meanwhile, Jalopy's owners have opened Jalopy Tavern, at 317 Columbia Street, with a big backyard, sixteen beers on tap, and soon, lunch and dinner. And seafood shack Brooklyn Crab is due at 24 Reed Street hopefully by June. All aboard the IKEA ferry. [Brooklyn Based]

King of Pop: Pepsi Revives Michael Jackson for New Ad Campaign

Somebody out there drinks Pepsi, right? Grub Street knows precisely one person who does, but some people somewhere have kept this brand on the map, always nipping at Coke's coattails for over a century. Now the perpetual bridesmaid of the beverage industry is prepping another big new ad push with big-name stars, dubstep, and the King of Pop, brought back from the dead.

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Today’s Fortune Cookies Are Tasteless ... in More Ways Than One

A fusion restaurant crossed the line for three friends on Long Island when their night ended with the crypitic fortune, "You will die alone and poorly dressed." Not funny to begin with, and definitely not funny considering the twenty-something customer had just lost her husband to cancer. Other jokey fortunes these days include: "One in three people has herpes. Look left. Look right. Look down." And we thought MSG was scary! [NYT]

Wylie Dufresne Doesn’t Really Mind Never Winning a Beard Award

Good luck on Monday!

Wylie Dufresne may be in the middle of overhauling his menu at wd~50, but he's also up for the Best New York Chef award at Monday night's James Beard gala. What does the chef, who's been nominated six years in a row (not to mention past nods for Rising Star Chef and Best New Restaurant) but has never won, think? "Being nominated for half a decade as one of the five best chefs in New York is a great accomplishment, and in many ways, is a greater accomplishment than winning it the first or second time and being out of the dialogue," he told Grub Street. "In a way, I think it would be a far greater accomplishment to go an entire decade of being nominated without winning."

Sloshed: What the World Can Learn from Carbonated Cocktails

Bubbles!Photo: ALEAIMAGE/iStockphoto

If you haven't already, chances are good you will see a house-carbonated Negroni at your favorite cocktail joint in the next couple months. Like Newton and Leibniz discovering calculus at the same time, or whoever wrote all those asteroid movies like fifteen years ago, bartenders are simultaneously stumbling across the joys of self-carbonated cocktails.

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Fratelli la Bufala Brings Neapolitan Pies to the Upper West

Time to welcome a new Neapolitan pizza to the Upper West: Fratelli la Bufala bowed a few days back on Broadway. A trio of brother pizzaiolos (the "fratelli" part) already have restaurants in Tokyo, Madrid, Barcelona, Berlin, and elsewhere, so who says the UWS isn't cosmopolitan? The grub focuses on Mozzarella di Bufala Campana cheese, naturally, with pizzas, pastas, salads, and desserts served daily at lunch and dinner.

Fratelli La Bufala, 2161 Broadway, at 76th St., 212-496-5303

Taste Test: Comparing Brooklyn Water to ‘Brooklynized’ Water

Not actual Brooklyn water.Photo: Tracy Collins

In March, we first learned the official water of the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn would be produced by the Original Brooklyn Water Bottling Company … which is based in Boca Raton, Florida. The water itself is "Brooklynized," which the company says is marketing schtick a process that makes the water taste more like water that's actually from Brooklyn. I managed to get my hands on some and took to the streets of Kings County to see if the borough's residents could tell the difference between the bottled stuff and New York City's beloved tap, and to find out which one they preferred.

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The Ashton ‘Raj’ Kutcher Popchips Commercial Has Been Pulled

No more chips for Ashton "Raj" Kutcher.

Ashton Kutcher's decision-making skills are yet again in question, and this time Popchips are at the heart of the matter. His new commercial — where he plays a range of single gents, include an Indian guy named Raj — has offended so many people that Popchips has pulled the plug on the campaign. Blogger Anil Dash called the ad "a hackneyed, unfunny advertisement featuring Kutcher in brownface talking about his romantic options, with the entire punchline being that he's doing it in a fake-Indian outfit and voice." Guess two and a half brain cells and a bag of chips won't get you very far. [TMZ]

First Look at Bishops & Barons, Bringing Dushan Zaric’s Cocktails to the EV on Wednesday

Call it the Boardwalk Empire effect, but here's another low-lit cocktail lounge designed to resemble an old-school liquor den. (This one bears a striking resemblance to another brand-new spot, the Experimental Cocktail Club.) Evidently in for 2012 drinking: zebra rugs, plush velvet upholstery, chandeliers, and tufted leather. The very talented Dushan Zaric (Employees Only) is behind drinks such as the White Negroni, with gin, Italian bitters, and lavender-infused white vermouth, while a brief list of edibles ranges from the requisite burger and kale salad to more intriguing-sounding grilled artichoke and lobster turnovers. Bishops & Barons opens Wednesday. See it all for yourself straight ahead.

Right this way for menus. »

California Lawmakers Sick of Hearing About Foie Gras

In case you missed it, a coalition of chefs banded together in hopes of overturning California's forthcoming foie gras ban. And what did the state legislature think about the move? They didn't care, and actually made a point of saying they weren't going to review the ban because they had more pressing issues. [AP/SFGate via Grub Street SF, Earlier]

Democracy and Transparency at Graydon Carter’s Beatrice Inn

Opening later this month.

The Post has more on the newly sign-adorned Beatrice Inn's return to accessible prices and democratic table-doling. When the onetime notorious nightspot reopens as a restaurant later this month under Graydon Carter's stewardship, it will reportedly have "a published phone number and reservations on OpenTable" (sounds familiar), and a first-come, first-served seating policy. As the paper notes, this marks a return to the Beatrice's longtime role as a sort of bohemian cafeteria, where guests (many famous) would often dine nightly, keeping a tab they'd pay at the end of the month. Carter confirms: "Democracy will be the order of the day," which we'll truly believe when we see it. Guess unlisted numbers are a little too pre-recession. [NYP]

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