Dr. Vino Brings First View of Wine Madhouse TerroirDr. Vino, one of our favorite wine blogs, drops the first images of the newly opened Terroir today. The wine bar owned by Marco Canora and Paul Grieco opened last night, and to judge by the pictures, it hit the ground running. As expected, the place reflects Grieco’s precarious sanity. Writes Dr. Vino: “The wine list is in a three-ring binder, which the designer described to me as being like the school notebook of ‘a 16 year-old boy’s whose obsession is not with cars or girls but obscure grape varieties,’ including one with Aglianico written on it multiple times.” Just wait til they look in the crawlspace!
Hipster wine bar, Terroir, now open! Wine by the glass starts at $2.75 [Dr. Vino]
Related: What You’ll Eat and Drink at Terroir
back of the house
Adam Platt on Best of New York: “It’s a Matter of Taste, Cutty!”Having pawed and pondered this week’s Best of New York issue endlessly, we knew that the only way we could possibly make up our minds about it was to pester Adam Platt into giving us his thoughts on why he made his picks, who he had to leave out, and what his reasoning was. Since Platt is always readily available on IM, the following chat answered our questions and made our peace with his picks.
Charlie Trotter Details Emerge; Frank Bruni’s Cross-Country TripThe first details on Charlie Trotter’s still-unnamed restaurant on Madison Square Park emerge: It will have 80 seats as well as a bar and lounge. [NYT]
Merkato 55 may be turning New Yorkers on to African cuisine, but there have been plenty of excellent, albeit under-the-radar, restaurants offering the continent’s cuisine for years. [TONY]
Related: Merkato 55’s Most Popular Dish: Doro Wat
The Modern’s new wine director, Belinda Chang, is the kind of sommelier we want to be someday: “I’m definitely obsessed with magnums. They’re so fun to pour!” [NYS]
What You’ll Eat and Drink at Terroir
After reading Rob and Robin’s opening this week, we can’t wait to visit Terroir when it opens this weekend (or Monday, if there’s a last-minute construction problem). But what awaits us there? We reached out to the new wine bar’s guiding spirit, Paul Grieco, to see if he could get us a sneak preview of the menu, and possibly a hint of what he had in mind for his wine program. Grieco delivered both — the latter in spades.
Back of the House
Global Warming Endangers Black Truffles; Gourmands Despair at God’sWe had a good bit of sport over the astronomical prices paid this past summer for white truffles in New York restaurants. But what if their black cousins, long the déclassé branch of the family, became even more expensive? Or disappeared entirely? That wouldn’t be so funny. And it wouldn’t be good for the price of white truffles, which, like Beluga caviar and shark-fin soup, could become a purely plutocratic pleasure sooner than we expected. (Not that truffles are evil in the way of Beluga caviar and shark-fin soup; we’re just thinking of endangered luxury foods, you understand.) An article in USA Today suggests that the global warming is currently bringing the hammer down on black-truffle production and that (gasp) “France’s black truffle will one day be just a memory.” It’s a similar story around the world, as fish stocks are depleted, ecosystems are knocked out of whack, and global demand for things like toro and truffles move beyond a small cluster of ascot-wearing bons vivants.
In the Magazine
This Week: New Fusion, New Coffee, Repurposed Water
The city’s newest food-fusion trend is Latin American and Italian cuisines, says the Underground Gourmet in this week’s magazine. Miranda in Williamsburg and Matilda in the East Village are leading the charge, and Rob and Robin alternate between calling it “Mex-Italian” and “Tusc-Mex.” (Our pick: “Mexcellente.”) Outside of our regular reading route, Intel has a dishy item about David Bouley — apparently, his Tribeca neighbors aren’t so thrilled about his proposed Brushstrokes restaurant. Back in the food section, it’s a difficult time of year for the Greenmarket, but that doesn’t deter Damon Wise at Craft for offering up this week’s “In Season” recipe: pan-roasted salsify. Gael Greene visits Smokin’ Q on the Upper East Side this week and enjoys the ribs and the thin-cut fries, though she could do without the owner’s jokes. Rob and Robin introduce us to three new restaurants this week, and we can’t wait to visit Terroir, the latest from Marco Canora and Paul Grieco. Also in “Openings”: an East Village coffee bar co-owned by Sasha Petraske and a new burger spot in the financial district. If a recession breeds good $4 burgers, it can’t be that bad. Finally, if you want to reduce bottled-water waste, we found four restaurants with a DIY approach to filtration and carbonation.
Jordan Frosolone Tends Hearth Every NightEach week, we’ll be highlighting one of the great but obscure young chefs who are actually running one of the city’s major restaurants. .
Name: Jordan Frosolone
Background: Forsolone, a native Chicagoan, put in time at Coco Pazzo, Blackbird, and Nomi, before hitting Italy for a year of heavy duty in Florence and Umbria. He then started in as a line cook for the famously demanding Marco Canora, at Hearth. When Canora went uptown to open Insieme, Forsolone was promoted to chef de cuisine and given the keys to Hearth.
Style: “I’m definitely in love with the greenmarket. Focused and balanced Italian and southern French.”
Engines of Gastronomy
At Insieme, Marco Canora Makes Pasta Like It’s 1875In the wonderful world of pasta, there is the fresh (usually made with eggs and rolled-out), and there is the dried (usually eggless and extruded). And then there is the unusual hybrid of sorts that Marco Canora has recently introduced on his Insieme menu. While surfing the Web, as all blog-obsessed chefs are wont to do, Canora discovered an old Venetian–style hand-cranked pasta extruder known as the Bigolaro, a.k.a. the Torchio, and if he had his doubts about its decidedly low-tech looks, the price, at $280, was right. The rustic gadget, which was patented in 1875, clamps on to any sturdy tabletop, and although it requires the strength of two Greco–Roman wrestlers to operate, the results are worth the effort.
Ask a Waiter
Nelson Hernandez of Insieme Is Waiting Out the Broadway Strike, Liquor BoardNelson Hernandez was a teacher for ten years before he decided he’d rather make art than teach it. He now performs around town as a singer-songwriter and pays the rent by waiting tables at Marco Canora’s joint Insieme. Since Insieme is located directly across from the darkened Winter Garden, we thought Hernandez might be just the person to tell us what the scene has been lately at a restaurant that caters both to theatergoing tourists and to homegrown aficionados of contemporary Italian cuisine.
Theater-District Restaurants May Lay Off Workers; Where the Chefs GoAfter three weeks of declining customers, theater-district restaurants fear layoffs. [NYP]
Related: Theater Strike Could Drop Curtain on Midtown Restaurants
Chefs including Tom Colicchio, Nicole Kaplan, and Marco Canora reveal where they really eat in the city (think Wing Wong and Bellavitae). [Diner’s Journal/NYT]
From the in-laws to the office party, a list of restaurants to turn to for every holiday scenario.[Strong Buzz]
Wine-Geek Heaven on the Way to the East VillageIt’s been a while since we first got wind of it, but the Hearth’s long-awaited spinoff wine bar, Terroir, is finally close to becoming a reality. The space, known in its former life as Bikes by George, will begin its transformation right after Thanksgiving, and co-owners Paul Grieco and Marco Canora hope to open the place by New Year’s. Grieco, the wine director, is a wine geek’s wine geek, which means he’s got some lofty plans.
Theater Strike Could Drop Curtain on Midtown RestaurantsThe fuel that fires the midtown’s restaurant economy is, like electricity or natural gas, indispensable. It’s that bustling, shuffling mass we like to call tourists, and with 27 theaters currently dark thanks to a stagehand strike, the tourism machine may be poised to shudder and stop. “The strike has a huge effect on us,” bemoans Insieme chef Marco Canora. “That’s like 40 percent of our business.” Thanks to Insieme’s high repute, the place gets a good seating between pre- and post-theater, but other restaurants are even more vulnerable.
Two Chefs (and One Good Eater) Take a Trip to the Bronx
If there’s something you can think of better than going up to Arthur Avenue in the Bronx in a big white Buick, for the express purpose of eating sandwiches with your two favorite Italian chefs, then we would like to know what it is. We heeded our lust for salumi and mozzarella and recorded the results for Grub Street posterity. .
Roving Chef: Arthur Avenue [Video]