Russian Tea Room Hires Marc Taxiera As ChefThe Russian Tea Room has found itself a new chef: former Beppe boss Marc Taxiera. Only in his first few weeks there, Taxiera is already revamping the menu, which has been in a state of suspended animation since former chef Gary Robins got the mitten in February. Taxiera has flown under the radar a little but is actually one of the more talented young chefs in town: Despite having no experience other than an ICE externship at Felidia and a job on the line at Baldoria, he did so well at Beppe that he was promoted from within when chef Cesare Casella left the restaurant to concentrate his energies on Maremma. Even though it’s on what is usually thought of as a cursed street, Beppe continued to flourish, owing largely to Taxiera’s smart, muscular menu. Whether all that translates into Russian is another story, but it’s a smart move for the embattled Russian Tea Room.
Related: Russian Tea Room Fires Gary Robins, and Robins Fires Back
The New York Diet
Sandra Bernhard Nibbles on Vegan Hors D’Oeuvre and Chows Down on Cheese GritsAs an actress, comedian, political activist, and singer-songwriter who’s slated to perform six nights at Joe’s Pub leading up to this New Year’s Eve, Sandra Bernhard is a versatile woman. We wondered if her diet was equally wide-ranging. She drew a cup of one of her favorite teas — Kukicha; “it’s made from twigs” — and told us about her obsession with omega-3 eggs, her occasional kosher-steak splurge, and how many sips she’ll take from a vodka tonic.