Posts for May 14, 2012

Michael Psilakis’s MP Taverna Now Open in Westchester; Apartment ‘Cue Tips With Wildwood Barbecue

• Pour one out for Michael Psilakis: His MP Taverna is now open in Westchester at One Bridge Street in Irvington. [Grub Street]

• This Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Wildwood Barbecue is helpfully offering a course on apartment barbecuing. Seventy-five bucks includes a demo, lunch, and beer tasting; call for reservations.

• Staten Island boosters, take note: You may soon be able to drink wines with an Island label, if the owner of Staten Island Winery School of Wine gets his way. [DNA Info]

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Julia Child to Get Commemorative Children’s Book, Too

Julia Child's 100th birthday will be one for the books, literally. In addition to that new biography we mentioned last week, another publisher will release a children's book version of Julia's life called Bon Appetit!: The Delicious Life of Julia Child. It's formatted like "a goofy scrapbook, with handwritten anecdotes," as Squid Ink reports, and manages to capture Julia's joie de vivre without ever talking down to the intended audience. Also, it sounds like the book wants to indoctrinate a new generation of American foodinistas into all things gourmet and French, attaching funny stories to cooking moments, like the time Julia pulled a bouquet garni out of a stockpot on air and declared, "It looks like a dead mouse!" As School Library Journal informs us, "Books for young foodies are very popular [right now]." Ugh. [Squid Ink]

Jay Rayner Victim of Dangerous-Sounding Identity Theft

Problems across the pond.

Wow ... food critics tend to have many enemies and frenemies, but this scary plot line sounds like it's straight out of Law & Order: London Gourmands. Jay Raynor just ran a succession of tweets, which, strung together, read as: "Pls follow the next few tweets. Someone is impersonating me on facebook using an image of me with a blade in front of my face as profile pic As far as I can tell from the information I ahve been given they are cliaming to represnet the bbc, getting them to sign release forms [sic]. .. luring them to locations for a shoot to which no one else has turned up. Am investigating but if anybody knows anything about this please ...... email me on jay dot rayner @ observer dot co dot uk" Best of luck sorting out this bloody mess and hope no one gets hurt. [Jay Rayner/Twitter]

Chris Santos Starts 50 Days of ‘Clean Living’

"Ok here we go. 50 days of clean living, hard work and dedication starts now. Lifestyle change." —Beauty & Essex chef-owner, New York Diet late-night-eating and hard-drinking subject Chris Santos on his new lease on life. [SantosCooks/Twitter]

Nobu’s Mega-Expansion: More Details on the Vegas Hotel and Biggest Restaurant Yet

Matsuhisa and his mock-upPhoto: Tatiana Arbogast

While the Bon Appetit–branded Vegas Uncork'd event unfolded this weekend, Nobu Matsuhisa took advantage of the increased media presence to unveil the first mock-up of Nobu Caesar's Palace, the largest branch of the restaurant yet, with 11,200 square feet and 327 seats. The restaurant is slated to open this fall as part of the Nobu Hotel at Caesar's, which the chef says was inspired by his hotel magnate business partner Robert De Niro.

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Papa Do Preach: Only ‘Good Bacteria’ Foods for Madonna

Cherish ... the good bacteria.

Ask Madonna what's in vogue with her eating habits these days, and she'll tell you it's all about the good bacteria, i.e. "fermented soy beans, millet and brown rice." The trend, a form of "inner horticulture," involves the cultivation of intestinal flora, and eating foods rich in fiber and so-called good bacteria, including Activia yogurts and quinoa. So her digestive track is, essentially, like a virgin. [Vancouver Sun]

Restoration Hardware Has Designs on the Restaurant Biz

Pull up a seat!Photo: Restoration Hardware

Oh Pottery Barn, aren't you sorry you didn't think of it first? Restoration Hardware has announced that it's branching out into the restaurant game, and its first location will be in Boston's Back Bay, a neighborhood known for swanky shops a lot like ... Restoration Hardware. Naturally, décor won't be an issue.

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Couch Potatoes: Watching an Hour of Food Network With Mimi Sheraton

Host overload.Photo: Getty Images, Patrick McMullen, Splashnews

No matter what you think of the Food Network, it's arguably the most influential and certainly the loudest voice in today's food-media landscape. With that in mind, we wondered what some of the country's more intellectual food lovers thought of the TV juggernaut. From time to time, we'll invite those people to watch a random, midweek afternoon hour of programming, and record their thoughts in the process. To help us kick things off: former New York Times restaurant critic — and never one to mince words — Mimi Sheraton.

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The Second Coming of Chrystie

Attempts to make nightlife happen on Chrystie Street have started and sputtered in past years, with Kush and, recently, Panda throwing in the towel. But now Thrillist brings word of Inga, a three-story club and karaoke joint (which seems to be Mystique's replacement) that joins newcomer Experimental Cocktail Club on the street. Matt Levine also has Cocktail Bodega coming up soon, and Home Sweet Home and the Box seem to be sticking around. Could Chrystie be poised for resurrection? [Thrillist]

Cook of Mormon: A Look at Mitt Romney’s Religious Diet

Is that a veggie burger?Photo: AP

As we all know by now, Mitt Romney is a Mormon. And so while it's possible to spot Barack Obama inhaling fried food or grabbing a quick beer, well, you won't spy Mitt engaging in such indulgences. In fact, as we noted a few weeks ago, Romney is even a sourpuss picnic guest. (He tried to turn the tide a bit by proclaiming his love for grits and catfish, but nobody bought it.) But we say, "Hey, it's not Mitt's fault." It's no wonder he's so stiff: The guy's diet is totally restrictive because Mormonism forbids ingesting substances that could become addictive. You'd be in a bad mood, too, if you couldn't get drunk or guzzle coffee! So just how tough is it to eat like Mitt? Sounds like the answer is very.

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Centolire Hits Auction Block, Manager Denies Trouble

Up for grabs?

There seems to be more trouble at Centolire, the Upper East Side Bolognese-and-gelato spot owned by the "dark prince of Italian fine dining" Pino Luongo. An auction listing in yesterday's Times (also available online, with pictures) indicates that the restaurant's mortgagee is seeking unpaid funds in the form of assets, so everything from Centolire's fine china to the freestanding glass elevator (with a reported $300k value) is up on the block today starting at 1 p.m. A call to the restaurant this morning was answered by a manager who told us, "I don't know where that information came from, but it's totally wrong." So, what gives? Has Centolire put out its last chicken ragout with strozzapreti?

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Colicchio Hates the Term ‘Celebrity Chef’ But Loves Kevin Gillespie’s Bacon Jam

Gone fishin'.

The New Potato has a long talk with Tom Colicchio about his life as one of the pioneers of celebrity chefdom, a term he "hates" and finds "silly" because, "You don’t say celebrity actor." He also thinks some people do wrong by overordering at Craft, and says there's only so many way to re-create a dish because, when it comes to culinary technique, "It’s like music, there are only twelve musical notes. You can’t help but hear the Beach Boys in REM." Additionally, he uses Kevin Gillespie’s bacon jam and is mostly keeping tracking of this season’s winner of Top Chef, Paul Qui. [New Potato]

Scenes From the Manhattan Cocktail Classic Gala

Cocktail obsessives gathered Friday night for one of the biggest events of the year: the Manhattan Cocktail Classic Gala at the New York Public Library. Dressed to impress, guests roamed the building's four stories, sampling an all-you-can-drink cocktail buffet and passing between rooms decked out in the décor of swingin' London, a clubby lounge, and even a list-only speakeasy courtesy of James Beard Outstanding Bar Program winners PDT. In one area, the Naked Cowboy held court in front of a table of his eponymous oysters, while in the basement, dancers performed to big band sounds. See it all straight ahead.

Buddhists Suffer Mother’s Day Food Poisoning

Talk about rubbing their stomachs: 150 people who attended a Mother's Day garden party at a New York Buddhist monastery were take to the hospital with severe food poisoning, reports The Wall Street Journal. The un-Zen eaters were headed from chanting ... to shopping at Woodbury Commons when the stomach problems struck. [WSJ]

Adam Platt on NoMad; Uncorking the Biggest Wine Hoax in History

NoMad's library.Photo: Danny Kim/New York Magazine

In this week's New York, Adam Platt visits NoMad, the "posh, coolly impersonal new restaurant" from Eleven Madison Park's Daniel Humm and Will Guidara. The sprawling restaurant hosts "a hodgepodge of styles under one roof" including the Library, the Atrium, and the plush Parlour. Skip the snacks and move straight to fare like "a flawlessly executed egg appetizer (poached over a bed of quinoa and Parmesan)"; or the chicken for two: "pre-carved, with deposits of foie gras-rich brioche inserted under the crackly skin." However, "there's a vague assembly-line feel to the proceedings that is compounded by the prices." These are high enough to dock the place a star; NoMad receives a two-spot.

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Introducing the Skinny Slurpee

7-Eleven's usual tactics for upping frozen treat sales include free Slurpee days and putting mom-and-pops out of business. But now USA Today writes that the Slurpee will soon be available in a Splenda version that has a mere twenty calories in an eight-ounce cup, versus 66 normally (though who actually only buys the eight-ounce size?). Low-cal flavors mango, strawberry banana, and cherry limeade will roll out by free Slurpee day on May 23 — mark your calendars. [USAT]

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