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Daniel Boulud

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Excerpt: ‘The Hamburger: A History’

How the burger rose to cultural ascendency in the new millennium after years of critique from environmentalists and anti-establishment thinkers.

Le Cirque Gets on the Wine-Bar Bandwagon

As the fashion for haute cuisine falls away, the more casual wine bar has become a kind of economic savior for the city's classic high-end chefs — one reason, as we noted in our Fall Preview year, the likes of Daniel Boulud and Alain Ducasse have embraced the genre wholeheartedly. (It's easier to lure customers into wine bars, and wine is a much higher-profit item than food.) Now Le Cirque has gotten into the act, opening its new wine bar tonight. Says the restaurant’s legendary owner, Sirio Maccioni: “Our new wine lounge is a more casual side of Le Cirque, with chaise longues and where no jackets are required. We wanted to offer something, in our lounge, without all the rigueur of the dining room.” The centerpiece of the wine bar is an immense wine tower, with, according to Maccioni, “20,000 bottles of wine and the right menu to go with it.” Somehow it just doesn’t seem right to go to Le Cirque without a jacket, though — no matter how many bottles of wine they have. Le Cirque wine-bar menu Related: Grape Nuts [NYM]

Platt Disses Daniel, and Other Holiday Tales

Presidents’ Day is a holiday for Grub Street, but, thankfully, there’s enough in this week’s magazine to read till we return tomorrow. Daniel Boulud, whom Adam Platt respects as the Last Great French Chef, falls down in his new restaurant and gets only one star. In this week's "Openings," Rob and Robin introduce us to Olana (American with Italian influences) and marvel at Akhtar Nawab and Noel Cruz for putting a restaurant where Jimi Hendrix used to (reportedly) play. At Momofuku Ssäm Bar, Rob and Robin find the mind-bending “Frankensteak”: hanger steak that is literally glued to world-class rib-eye deckle. The Insatiable Critic falls for Fiore, a funky, rustic Italian place in Williamsburg; for those at risk of scurvy, pickled lemon is in "In Season" this week. But if you want a drink, you’ll find a guide to the city’s top boutique wineshops by the Gastropoda herself, Regina Schrambling.

No Liquor Love for Momofuku Ko and Veselka Bowery; Boulud and Keller Hit Dubai

Momofuku Ko may be ready to open in a couple of weeks, but they’ll have to get by with serving only wine and beer, since David Chang’s rep neglected to bring the necessary petitions to the liquor-license hearing last night. [Eater] Veselka Bowery was also denied a liquor license by Community Board 3 last night, but unlike Momofuku Ko, it doesn’t seem like they’ll ever be granted one, thanks to Daniel Boulud’s nearby liquored-up establishment. [Eater] Related: Veselka II Is Coming — Let the Burger War Begin Don’t be afraid to ask your waiter to put your leftovers in a doggie bag. After all, you did pay for that food. [Diner’s Journal/NYT]