Posts for August 28, 2013

RedFarm Steak Opens; King Noodle Launches Lunch

City Harvest is distributing more than 400,000 pounds of produce and canned food for the Jewish High Holidays through its kosher initiative. Plus: Through the end of September, the organization will deliver additional emergency food to its network of more than 30 kosher food pantries and soup kitchens. Nice. [Grub Street]

• "Pop-Asian" restaurant King Noodle is now open for lunch, offering dishes like grilled miso corn with pickled burdock root, watercress, and egg, as well as vegetable fried rice with Spam. [Grub Street]

• Tonight, Joe Ng and Ed Schoenfeld are opening RedFarm Steak, a pop-up restaurant in the newly refurbished lower-level space at 529 1/2 Hudson Street. It'll only be open for 28 days — until the upstairs renovations at RedFarm are complete. [Grub Street]

• Tickets are still available to see the Ethiopian rock bank JANO perform tonight at Ginny’s Supper Club at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10. [Grub Street]

Former Mobster Turns to Indiegogo to Expand Restaurant

Of all the do-gooder campaigns out there on Indiegogo, it's refreshing to come across one that allows donors to help a former mobster’s pasta- and pizza-making dreams come true. Angelo “Luzzi” Lutz is raising money to expand his Collingswood, New Jersey, restaurant, which is unsubtly named the Kitchen Consigliere. Lutz, described as a “heavyweight wannabee wiseguy” in a 2001 Philadephila Inquirer report on the trial, was convicted on racketeering, gambling, and extortion charges in an operation linked to La Cosa Nostra. That may all be behind him now, but the thing is, as a convicted felon, Lutz can't apply for a loan. In a genius move, however, that certainly harkens back to his past as “the only one that could do the math” in the extortion op, he's now turned to online crowd-funding.

Note the Mario Puzo–esque font. »

Alan Richman Defends His Mighty Quinn’s Tale

GQ vs. MQ

The GQ critic is sticking to his story that a Mighty Quinn's Barbeque clerk refused to serve him at Smorgasburg until a line "of substantial length" (25 people and three baby carriages) formed. Mighty Quinn's Micha Magid and Hugh Mangum are denying that this ever happened, of course. "Their point is irrelevant," Richman writes in a blog post on "I was not reporting on Mighty Quinn's company policy. I was writing about what happened to me. They didn't see it. They have no idea." In case the clerk needs reminding, Richman describes himself as "the not-so-young guy with a pen in hand, writing down everything she said in a notebook" — and then shares a play-by-play of everything he wrote down that day. Regardless of what went down, Richman might need to work on being more discreet while on the job. A little help, Pete? [Earlier, GQ]

What to Eat at Meltkraft, Bringing Duck-Fat-Grilled Cheese Sandwiches and Kale Slaw to Park Slope

Landscape, with Jersey cow. (Cheese on bread, 2013)Photo: Courtesy of Meltkraft/Facebook

Twice a day, Eran Wajswol tends to 700 sheep and goats on his 120-acre Morris County farm, and the resulting milk is used to make his entire line of Valley Shepherd Creamery farmstead cheese, some of which is aged two years in a 120-foot-long cave on the property. Wajswol sells at Greenmarkets and already has a Brooklyn shop, and by the middle of next week, Valley Shepherd will have opened its second Meltkraft (the first is in Reading Terminal Market), which will serve a menu of seven grilled cheese sandwiches, like the "Melter Skelter," made with a raclette-style raw Jersey-cow-milk cheese, green tomatoes, and barbecue chips. Sides like fennel-kale slaw will also be available, customers have the add-on option of having their sandwiches fried in bacon or duck fat, and Wajswol says he'll offer a rotating selection of regional microbrews to complement the lineup. In addition to the sandwiches and beer, the shop's staff will pull shots of La Colombe and sell Balthazar pastries and, of course, an ever-changing variety of raw-milk and cave-aged cheese to take home. Check out the full menu, straight ahead.

Fresh mozz. »

Liddabit Sweets Opening in Chelsea Market

Congrats, Team Liddabit.

The confectioner and local market vendor Liddabit Sweets will begin selling its small-batch candy bars and beer caramel slurtles at Chelsea Market on September 1. True to its name, Liddabit will occupy a tiny space — 270 square feet in the concourse — which will be stacked to the gills with bespoke marshmallows and beautiful chocolates. Questlove is no doubt psyched. [Related]

Sexist Internet Ad Comparing Women to Instant Ramen Banned in U.K.

An Internet ad for the Unilever-owned ramen brand Pot Noodle was banned for comparing women to the cheap, dehydrated snack. The gist of it, which can still be seen here, was featured on the company's Facebook page and juxtaposed a photo of a woman in a red bikini alongside a cup of Pot Noodle's piri piri flavor. "Which one gets you hotter?" a voice-over asked suggestively, and, well, you get the picture.

A history of tastelessness. »

Owners of ‘Offensive’ Wandering Dago Food Truck Sue NYRA and State

The Dago strikes back.

The couple that owns the Wandering Dago, a Schenectady-based food truck that was abruptly banned from Saratoga Race Course on opening day last month, is suing the New York Racing Association and New York's Office of General Services. All told, Brandon Snooks and Andrea Loguidice are looking for $343,000 to make up for lost business at the racing venue and also at Empire State Plaza, where Wandering Dago was denied a permit to vend earlier this year. That's in addition to punitive damages, attorney’s fees, and an injunction designed to prevent future bans.

A celebration of Italian-American heritage. »

Your Dried Spices May Infect You With Salmonella

Maybe it's time to toss the cinnamon sticks: Dried spices are the No. 1 cause of salmonella poisoning among imported foods. Per the Times, researchers have found that 9 percent of spices imported from India and 14 percent of those from Mexico carry the bug, findings that are less surprising once you realize that most of these shelf staples are dried on dirt floors that are wide open to bird poop (gross but true). The good news is that spice farmers are starting to respond to the bad publicity by upgrading to such high-tech practices as boiling spices and using netting to keep out the poo. The FDA will reportedly release a comprehensive report “soon,” but in the meantime, be wary of your spice cabinet; it seems salmonella can survive on dried spices indefinitely. [NYT]

Detroit Doughnut Shop Will Honor Hip-Hop’s J Dilla

Detroit News music writer Adam Graham reports that the late producer J. Dilla’s uncle will open a coffee and doughnut shop called Dilla's Delights this fall in Harmonie Park. The Detroit-based producer, who died in 2006, made music for and with A Tribe Called Quest, Common, Erykah Badu, and lots more acts. Herman Hayes, who's been making the rounds to several of the country's most notable doughnut shops, says the shop is themed around Dilla's final album, Donuts, and will sell twenty different varieties, most of which will reference the dozens of projects the producer worked on during his brief but incredibly prolific career. [Detroit News]

Toe Be Gone: Yukon Bar Customer Swallows Mummified Toe in Whiskey Shot

When does NYC get its severed-toe cocktail lounge?Photo: Courtesy of Canadian Tourism

Some idiot American known only as "Josh from New Orleans" had reportedly been living in Dawson City, Yukon, for the summer and had just gotten his security deposit back on Saturday night when he decided it was time to shake things up. So Josh opted for the "sourtoe cocktail" at the Downtown Hotel, in which a dessicated human toe is famously plunked into a glass of whiskey and taken like a shot. Normally a "toe captain" supervises the drinking and the safe return of the toe; rules (warning: annoying music) state that the shriveled digit must touch the customer's lips to gain entry into the quasi-exclusive Sourtoe Cocktail Club, but Josh took it too far and intentionally swallowed the toe, immediately paying the $500 fine for the toe pas.

Not cool, Josh. »

The Other Critics: Wells Awards Betony Three Stars; Richman’s Smorgasburg Review Starts Drama

Wells says order the lobster at Betony.

This week, New York's Underground Gourmet focused on what's next: Get excited for Marco's, Fung Tu, M. Wells Steakhouse, and Rôtisserie Georgette — all restaurants that will probably make it into this very column in the coming months. But the other critics are still focusing on Betony and Corvo Bianco. Read it all, straight ahead.

"Corvo Bianco is a favorite choice for meet-ups." »

Patrick Dempsey Severs Ties to Coffee Chain He Brought Back to Life

The Grey's Anatomy star is no longer involved with Tully's, the formerly bankrupt Seattle coffee chain he and partner Michael Avenatti resuscitated in January. After resolving a dispute, Avenatti and Dempsey released a joint statement in which the actor said he was "happy to have been a part of the effort that brought awareness to the Tully's brand." The chainlet's approximately 40 Puget Sound-area stores, which compete with Starbucks, will now go on without McDreamy. [AP/CBS Seattle via Sprudge, Earlier]

Life Among the Fruitarians: A Visit to the Woodstock Fruit Festival

Eat up!Photo: Andrey Armyagov/iStockphoto

Camp Walden, located 220 miles north of New York City, looks like every summer camp from every eighties camp movie you've ever seen. There is a roped-off swimming area that gives way to the wide expanse of Trout Lake. The main lodge sits on a hill above the water, and a dirt path leads to some cabins, basketball and tennis courts, and a ropes course. But when I was at Camp Walden last week, it wasn't full of horny counselors and unruly campers. It was full of fruitarians.

"It's fringe fanatical ... " »

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