March 20, 2013
It’s been awhile since I’ve stayed in my own neighborhood, but this past weekend I decided to venture uptown to Five Lamps Tavern. Located in close proximity to Columbia University, this whole area is buzzing with great places. While their food is pretty standard pub fare, they have an impressive craft beer list, and fantastic back garden space. Although the snow stopped us from a seat at the picnic table, next time around I’m hoping for more spring-like temps.
March 11, 2013
If you’re hungry and in Hudson, I recommend spending a lunch or dinner at Swoon Kitchenbar. Their fresh, locally sourced menu changes weekly based on the season, and it was top of my list to check out. To keep with our cheese trend of the day, we opted for a sampler plate including Humble Pie, a cow, sheep milk blend that was creamy and tangy from Woodcock farm in Vermont, Ewe’s Blue, a sheep’s milk blue veined cheese from Old Chatham Sheepherding in New York, and of course our favorite Hudson Red from Pampered Cow. The shoestring fries with spicy aioli were a perfect extra snack. Although we stopped in during a quiet midday hour, the bar is known to attract a crowd and the tables fill up quickly in the evening hours, so be sure to get there early for a seat.
March 3, 2013
During our weekend upstate, we certainly got our fill of cheese. Some favorites included Sprout Creek Farm’s Point of Origin– a raw cow’s milk cheese that is aged with Red Hook’s Sixpoint Ale, another local favorite. This unique beer/cheese combo is soft, pungent and buttery with lovely hints of malt and coffee. Next stop was a bit further north at Pampered Cow’s creamery at Twin Maple Farm. Situated in a picturesque country landscape a short drive from Hudson, we were lucky enough to get a private tour and learn a bit about the cheese-making process. Best known for their Hudson Red– a funky, washed-rind, raw cow’s milk cheese, we also got a sneak peek of their truffle cheese, which was amazing, and their garlic cheese curds were another favorite of mine. I can’t wait for a return visit and photoshoot this spring when everything is in bloom.
February 15, 2013
Last weekend we saw our first significant snowfall in awhile. There’s nothing quite like waking up on a Saturday morning and venturing through the neighborhood as the sledders, skiers and snowshoers come out and transform Central Park into a great outdoor adventure. Feeling a bit lazy by the afternoon, I pulled together a meal for the apartment to enjoy thanks to Zabars. It included a couple pastas to warm us up– pesto and three cheese with mushrooms, our favorite rosemary bread with sun-dried tomato tofu spread and a side of asparagus.
February 3, 2013
If you’re in New York and craving some fast food, you should make a stop at one of the quintessential burger joints of the city, Shake Shack. The other day I opted for their Smoke Shack burger– including cheese, applewood smoked bacon and peppers. About to get a milkshake for dessert, once I laid eyes on the Mast Brothers chocolate bar made just for Shake Shack, I had to splurge and try out the latest from my favorite Brooklyn chocolatiers instead. It was well worth the $9 for the delicious dark chocolate blend with earthy notes of cranberry and cinnamon, and of course the adorable packaging and artwork certainly helped sway my decision.
Happy Super Bowl Sunday! x
January 6, 2013
Happy New Year! I’ve had such a wonderful couple weeks spending time with family, friends and relaxing– and hope you did as well. In between the holiday festivities, I’ve been working on my new website that I’m looking forward to sharing soon. As for the latest food shoots, I spent an afternoon in Downtown Syracuse grabbing some sandwiches to go. Of course, whenever I’m in the area, my first stop is Pastabilities for their infamous hot tomato oil. For the sandwiches, I decided to stop at Kitty Hoynes, a casual Irish pub, for a reuben, and lastly made my way to Franklin Square’s Boulangerie for a chicken salad sandwich.
December 5, 2012
One of the best parts of New York during the Christmas season is the markets that pop up across town. I was thrilled to hear that my favorite beef jerky boys at Field Trip were going to be setting up shop at Columbus Circle’s Holiday market, where I frequent often. I’ve already made a couple visits and certainly plan to stop by more before Christmas. The market has expanded from years past to include a more diverse aray of food options, so you can not only shop but grab a bite as well. Happy Holiday Shopping! x
November 17, 2012
It’s a beautiful start to the weekend, and I’m thrilled to say that I’m staying local and enjoying the city. With the cooler season just upon us, one of my favorite ways to pass the hours on a Saturday afternoon around the Upper West Side is to take a glimpse around the Natural History Museum and go across the street to the New York Historical Society for lunch. A huge fan of the decor, they combine perfectly the look of a traditional home dining room with a modern flair. Our recent visit left us a little too full for lunch hour, but the food was just too good to not indulge.
November 5, 2012
New York is still recovering in the days following Hurricane Sandy, and my heart goes out to all those less fortunate than myself as they continue to look forward. I’ve finally returned to the office, and slowly we’re getting back into the daily routine. Meanwhile, I’ve sorted through a hiking excursion from Montana in a desert area known as Weatherman Draw, containing the largest collection of Native American rock art on the continent. I recently put together a menu inspired by a hiker’s lunch. It included everything that can be prepped ahead of time, and easily transported to location. We made open grilled chicken and steak sandwiches, a side of beans and trail mix, and Ocean Spray’s sparkling cranberry juice cans for a refreshing taste to quench your thirst.
September 14, 2012
Donna D.’s signature sandwich is fresh mozzarella on a roll with tomatoes, shredded iceberg lettuce, thinly sliced pickles, a small amount of white onions which must be sliced paper thin and honey mustard sauce. As
simple odd as this sandwich may sound, very few delis have been able to perfect it. Either the bread is stale, they don’t shred the lettuce, or even **gasp** use processed mozzarella or even **larger gasp** don’t use the right honey mustard sauce (which I actually don’t even know the name of the brand I prefer). Only two delis have been able to master my sandwich, Toasties in NYC and the Ave in New Rochelle (yes I’ve schlepped to Westchester for my favorite sandwich). You would too if you have ever experienced the amazingness of the Ave.
But at last I have found another deli that can not only perfect my sandwich but also offers da bomb sandwiches for DIRT cheap. I’m talking $7.50 for a foot-long sandwich that can easily feed two people. Sal, Kris, & Charlie’s Deli is just north of the Triborough bridge in Astoria and is an old school deli. Their signature sandwich “The Bomb” is basically every meat and cheese that they offer loaded into a freshly baked Italian sub. The sheer weight of it could easily knock out anyone trying to steal it from you. The sandwich is that good. So be prepared to use it as a weapon to fight off perps.
Sal’s is a cash only joint and doesn’t have any seating so be prepared. For an inexpensive date I suggest grabbing food from Sal’s then heading over to Socrates Sculpture Garden or Astoria Park for a picnic.