Posts for June 12, 2012

Get Your Meat Fix at Meatopia; Free Booze at L’Ecole [Updated]

• In celebration of National Lobster Week, L'Ecole is offering a glass of sommelier's choice of wine, complimentary with the order of their steamed lobster, through June 16. [Grub Street]

Sahadi's and Betty Bakery are the latest to join the lineup at this weekend's inaugural Atlantic Avenue Extravaganza. [Grub Street]

• Waterfront @ Pier 92's rooftop Fourth of July party is set to boast eats from some of the city's favorite food trucks. Expect fare from Phil’s Steaks, Souvlaki GR, Milk Truck, and Valducci’s Pizza, among others. [Grub Street]

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Andrew Zimmern Declares Filipino Food the New Everything

"I want to go on record — this is not something that’s hot now somewhere and will get hot everywhere else," Zimmern alerted the universe today, with a sidebar of a Spam-fried-rice recipe. He says the trend is just starting this second, and might take another year to peak, but prepare for "miraculous" tropical Asian ingredients, and a whole lotta coconut milk. [MSNBC]

Food Writers Are Crushed About Anderson, But Equally Upset About Isa

"And without them, the Isa that I knew, the Isa that was a finalist for the James Beard award for the best new restaurant in the country, is gone." —Pete Wells, on the unpleasant news that Isa cleaned out its kitchen — including the chef, Ignacio Mattos, sous chef Jose Ramirez Ruiz, and pastry chef Pamela Yung — to prepare for Taavo Somer's new Mediterranean vision. [NYT]

First Look at Rosemary’s, Now Serving Rooftop Farm–to-Table in the Village

It's the time of year to eat fresh from the garden, and Rosemary's, which just opened in Greenwich Village, wants to serve you Italian food straight from its rooftop farm. The restaurant comes from Carlos Suarez of Bobo, and Wade Moises (Lupa, Babbo) is behind the stove. The corner space has a sprawling open-air feel (aided by strings of lights and windows that can be flung open in warmer times), and the wine list is fittingly laissez-faire, with every bottle going for $40 and every glass for $10. Food roves casually from small plates of veggies, seafood, or signature foccacia to simple pastas and mains. It's dinner only for now, with breakfast and lunch coming up. See what we're talking about straight ahead.

See the menu. »

Outlaws: Thirteen Banned Foods We Should Be Able to Eat

Last week, we all joined in helping California mourn the impending loss of foie gras owing to a statewide ban. This got us thinking about all the other banned and impossible-to-find foods here in the U.S., and how, as dutiful food writers, we'd like to try them all someday. Surprisingly, things like blowfish, shark fin, and horse meat (see this bologna M. Wells recently served on a grilled cheese, with foie gras, too) are still legal. (California just outlawed shark fin last year, though people can still sell it there until July 2013.) Okay, Grub Street draws the line at human genitalia, but what's wrong with some real, non-canned Scottish haggis? Check out all the food that's banned, but shouldn't be, straight ahead.

McDonald’s Chef Says His Food Is No Less Healthy Than Thomas Keller’s

No longer taking criticism laying down.

McDonald's is tired of standing in as a synonym for stoppered arteries and soaring obesity. If you don't like it, don't eat there, and if you eat there, don't eat there all the time. That seems to be the gist of the fast-food empire's new 'tude, as expressed by its senior director of culinary innovation, Daniel Coudreaut, the dude helping to get oatmeal and blueberries on the breakfast menu and apple slices into Happy Meals. The chef defended McDonald's menu in a press event in Cleveland last week and reports his defiance and denial that the Golden Arches represents everything wrong with the country's diet. "I don't see anything on the menu that's unhealthy," Coudreaut noted, oblivious to the 42 grams of fat hitting hearts in the shape of a quarter pounder with cheese. The chef is a fan of having a weekly Big Mac himself, lets his kids eat at McDonald's once a week, and in the most serious delusion of grandeur, even compares McNuggets to fancy, chef-prepared "forcemeat." But his biggest faux pas came when he went after Thomas Keller and the French Laundry.

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Home of the $10 Strip-Club Lunch Now Serving $15 Weekend Brunch

Rick's Cabaret, home of the most titillating lunch in town, has heard the cry of its steak- and lap-dance-craving customers and opened for a cover-free weekend brunch. [DNAinfo]

Brett Anderson Fired From NOLA’s Times-Pic

He should've scored that Sifton gig.

Brett Anderson — the excellent food writer from New Orleans, whom New York chefs were frantically and misguidedly preparing to take Sam Sifton's job — has been fired from the Times-Picayune. Eater NOLA notes that Anderson tweeted a link this morning to the Replacements' "Goddamn Job," asking if it was the song of the day, and that his firing was confirmed by the Gambit. As a James Beard winner in one of the country's most important culinary cities, the decision just doesn't add up ... even if the paper is slowly phasing out of print. Nobody's po-boy, Anderson will no doubt find something even better. [Eater NOLA]

The Beagle Goes Small-Plates-Only

Cocktail-food pairing boards are sticking around.

Creative East Village cocktail bar the Beagle — of the quirky brunch — is dispensing with its menu of small and large dishes in favor of a less fussy small-plates-only lineup. Favorites like Frito pie and the cocktail-food pairing boards, including burrata-gin martini and the pork-belly-Manhattan are sticking around. New to the lineup: "cold pizza" (seafood-and-greens-topped flatbread) and a sherry pairing with braised oxtail and veggies. The new menu launches today. [Related]

We Have a Winner in Our Saveur Summer BBQ Tickets Giveaway

Congrats, Redge124!

Last week we invited you to share your best/worst grilling experiences for a chance to win a pair of tickets to Saveur's annual summer barbecue, happening June 26. There were several instances of botched perfect-'cue plans, complete with the fire department showing up, but our favorite was the least expected: the hornet's nest grill-up described by commenter Redge124. Maybe it's the gonzo foodie in us, but we loved that after removing said nest from the backyard, Redge124 and friends thought to throw it on the grill — and then each ate a charred hornet. We know the chefs at Saveur's barbecue will approve as well. The full comment is below.

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Sahadi’s Makes Big Expansion Plans

Sahadi's on Atlantic Avenue, the Mecca of NYC Middle Eastern grocers, has remained much the same since its last expansion in 1985. But this fall the store will see big changes when it breaks into a third storefront adjacent to its current digs, adding 1,500 square feet. While many of the details are still in the works, co-owner Ron Sahadi tells us the addition will allow for a broader cheese and deli selection as well as more varieties of tea and coffee. Sourcing for the products hasn’t gotten under way yet, but Sahadi said he hopes to procure some of the new stock locally. The new space should bow — insh’Allah — in September.

Boston’s Treasured Toro to Hit New York This Fall

It's about time, Oringer.

A rep tells Grub Street that Ken Oringer, with chef Jamie Bissonnette, will open Toro at 85 Tenth Avenue — in the same Nabisco factory as Del Posto and Colicchio & Sons — this fall. The restaurant will be similar to their popular Barcelona-style tapas restaurant, Toro, in Boston’s South End (which opened in 2005). It's been an exciting time for Boston's most wicked-awesome restaurant guys, with Clio's fifteenth birthday bash just last week. See ya in the city.

Elizabeth Banks’s Odd Girl Scout Cookie Obsession

Ex-Girl Scout and Brownie Elizabeth Banks headed over to The Tonight Show to promote her new movie, People Like Us, and ... Girl Scout cookies. Particularly the Nestlé candy-bar variation. "Jay, they taste exactly like the cookies," she squealed. "But they're candy bars and you can buy them all the time!" Her endorsement deal addiction is so bad she's even careened over three lanes after spotting a cookie transaction on the street. Also, that's all she was eating before her Allure cover shoot. Uh-huh.

Watch the video! »

City Agencies Encouraged to Embrace Local Food

Locavore may not be the first word that pops to mind when we think of NYC's municipal government, but Mayor Bloomberg and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn are expected to announce a new set of guidelines today for city agencies aimed to encourage the purchase of local food. When contracting food or catering orders of more than $100K, bodies like the Department of Education will be allowed to give preference to locally produced products, so long as they're not more than 10 percent more costly than the lowest bid. Local farmers, break out the N.Y. State apple juice: You're in — just be prepared to get low-balled. [WSJ]

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