Posts tagged restaurant

Feast Fit For The Stars

Written for Galavante.com

Whether it’s a super-secret Friends and Family restaurant opening or the front row at Chanel, there’s nothing like a star-filled room. Throw some tapas and good intentions into the mix? You have yourself a party.

To celebrate its 20th birthday on June 12th, the Hotel Arts Barcelona has rounded up the hottest Michelin-stared chefs in Spain to serve a veritable tapas feast to its privileged party guests.

Forget the chorizo and albondigas your best friend prepared after her extended honeymoon in Andalusia. These are molecular kings, culinary prodigies and avant-garde visionaries whose gastronomic talents are revered around the world. 

You’ll be rubbing shoulders with Albert Adrià, Joan Roca, Andoni Aduriz, Marc Gascons and the Hotel Arts’ own superstar chef Paco Pérez while they whip up their favorite tapas dish.

For some serious foodie time with the chefs, just drop €20,000 for the hotel’s best digs and get a behind-the-scenes tête-à-tête with the masters. Hey, the theme of the week is a splurge and we are here to deliver.

For that price, you’ll also get preferred reservations and VIP access for a year to Paco Pérez and Albert Adrià’s acclaimed restaurants, which are transforming Barcelona’s culinary scene. (And if you think about it, that’s saving your assistant many phone calls to the reservations receptionist. Time is money.)

The best part? Hotel Arts Barcelona will be donating all party proceeds to UNICEF. So, in addition to spending a long weekend in one of the world’s best cities sampling its finest cuisine, you save the children while doing it. Who’s the star, now?

Photos courtesy of Hotel Arts Barcelona

Pascal & Sabine opens in Asbury Park

SMITH brings a touch of worldly European flair to Bangs Avenue in Asbury Park with its new brasserie Pascal & Sabine. This is the fifth downtown Asbury restaurant from SMITH, a design and hospitality collective I covered in an article for Travel + Leisure this past October.

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Reminiscent of another time and place, Pascal & Sabine has touches of Belle Epoque Paris with its copper and brass espresso machine, an Art Deco façade and design influences from French filmmaker Albert Lamorisse’s playful classic, The Red Balloon. The name of the restaurant is inspired by Lamorisse’s children Pascal and Sabine, who played lead roles in the short film.

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The dining room is outfitted with sumptuous leather chairs and banquettes, marble tables, vintage mirrors, and floor-to-ceiling windows with flooding light illuminating the circular lounge bar.

The main bar seats 18 and serves stiff drinks to tipple in the rosy shadows thrown by the antique brass table lamps, while the front lounge is worthy of a Saturday evening Gertrude Stein salon.

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While you’re getting comfortable and possibly a bit nostalgic, Grace Crossman and Paul Holzheimer will wow you back to reality with culinary delicacies like Duck Confit (seared duck breast, swiss chard, fingerling potatoes and duck jus), Bouillabaisse (Provençal fish broth, mixed seafood) and Pork Terrine (potato cake, shaved celery salad, crème fraîche, jus). The menu is simple yet refined, balanced with meat, seafood and vegetables.

The desserts are a sinful finale of Chocolate Mousse (flourless chocolate cake, chocolate ganache, crème anglaise), Tarte Tatin (puff pastry, caramelized apple, vanilla bean crème fraîche) and Poached Pear (cream, spiced port reduction).

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Pascal & Sabine is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. When you don’t have time for a sit-down meal, just pop into the restaurant’s backdoor bread shop for a freshly baked baguette to go.

Pascal & Sabine
www.pascalandsabine.com
601 Bangs Ave, Asbury Park, NJ 07712
732-774-3395
Open 7 days a week; 8am – 12am (Sunday – Thursday); 8am – 2am (Friday and Saturday)

My husband took me for birthday drinks at Patancha. The happy hour special was two for one freshly juiced melon daiquiris. It was the most delicious fresh fruit cocktail I’ve tasted in Mendoza. We nibbled on a five cheese picada with cured meats. On Friday nights, they have live tango shows, which gave me another reason to come back besides sampling another flavor of their rum daiquiris.

Peru 766, Ciudad, Mendoza
www.pata-ancha.com.ar

El Mercadito is my favorite restaurant in Mendoza thus far. It’s the one place that I can find delicious green juice and a variety of gourmet salads. Most restaurants in Mendoza offer a menu of milanesas, empanadas, pizza, pastas and beef; anything leafy and green is a novelty. I also love the antique-garage decor and its outdoor patio. It’s not cheap, but it lives up to its value proposition of “friendly & fresh”. Arístides 521, Tel. 4638847

Q+A: Argentina's First Woman of Wine

Check out my Travel + Leisure interview with Mendoza’s celebrated winemaker Susana Balbo. 

Argentina’s Queen of Wine

Susana Balbo is not just a woman of wine, she is a woman of the world. She is as complex and elegant as her celebrated blended wines. Over a four-hour lunch in her new restaurant Osadia de Crear at her Dominio del Plata winery in Mendoza, I was charmed by Susana’s intriguing story of heartbreak, success, motherhood and wine.

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I entered the interview knowing that Susana was the definition of a trailblazer. Named one of the “50 Most Powerful Women in Wine” by UK’s The Drink Business, Susana was the first woman winemaker in Argentina, the first female to work at Michel Torino winery, the first female president of Wines of Argentina, and the first winemaker to be hired as a consultant outside of Argentina.

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When meeting someone so accomplished, I can usually tolerate a certain level of arrogance; but, there is no trace of superiority in Susana’s speech or manner. On the contrary, she is humble and honest with a strength characterized by sensitivity.

Life has not handed Susana success on a silver platter, she has endured obstacles that would have shattered others with less resiliency. Her first winery went bankrupt after being cheated by an unscrupulous businessman; she built a lingerie company from scratch that failed; she parted with a family business due to conflicting visions; and Susana overcame the tragic death of her first husband and father of her children.

Blessed with an eternal sense of optimism, Susana believes that the challenges you confront are the lessons you most need to learn. God does not take something away from you without giving it back in another form—there is always a universal balance. Susana attributes the strength to pick herself up again and keep striving to the responsibilities she had as a mother and sole provider. Failure was never an option. For her children, she would do whatever life demanded of her to succeed.

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Today, Susana has built Dominio del Plata, a world-class 47-acre winery producing 3 million bottles of wine per year, sold in 36 countries around the world. She’s renowned for her blends, which are bottled under four major labels including Crios, the most popular and economical, Susana Balbo Signature, which she refines to her own taste preferences, and Nosotros, the high-end Malbec flagship line. Susana exports 97% of Dominio del Plata’s harvest to major markets around the world including  the United States, Canada, England and Brazil. Her wines, like most Mendocinian wines, are highly affordable, retailing from $10.00-$35.00, with a level of quality that rivals more established wine regions like California, France and Italy.

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The interminable student, Susana spends one month a year in a different wine region around the world to learn from local winemakers and growers. Each harvest, she consistently experiments with new blends to keep evolving her product line. Susana’s children, Jose Lavaglio, 28, and Ana Lavaglio, 26, have chosen to join her business are highly involved in its management. Both are working alongside Susana to open a winery in China, which will debut in 2016. Jose, who is also a trained winemaker and viticulturist, has recently launched two new wines under the label Vaglio (inspired by his last name). This year, Ana launched Dominio del Plata’s first restaurant called Osadia de Crear and manages the day-to-day operations.

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The restaurant’s name, which translates to “dare to create,” seems to be a family trait that Susana has passed down to her children in both nurture and nature.

*To arrange a winery tour at Dominio del Plata, or make dining reservations at Osadia de Crear, email info@dominiodelplata.com.ar.

Dominio del Plata Address:

Cochabamba 7801

Agrelo - Lujan de Cuyo, Mendoza

Argentina

Tel: +54 261 498 9200

A quiet Saturday night at Tea & Company in Chacras de Coria, Mendoza.

A quiet Saturday night at Tea & Company in Chacras de Coria, Mendoza.

Savory Amuse Bouche @siriony #food #restaurant #italian

Savory Amuse Bouche @siriony #food #restaurant #italian

Escaping winter’s chill at The Four Seasons #restaurant #dining

Escaping winter’s chill at The Four Seasons #restaurant #dining

Fine #dining at Whispers #restaurant, Spring Lake, NJ

Fine #dining at Whispers #restaurant, Spring Lake, NJ

@chefdavidburke’s La Fromagerie in Rumson, NJ #restaurant #dining

@chefdavidburke’s La Fromagerie in Rumson, NJ #restaurant #dining

InterContinental Times Square

The one place I didn’t get to visit in this LEED certified, sustainable hotel is their rooftop beehive, which produces the honey they use to sweeten their homemade craft cocktails. Next time!

View from the Penthouse on the 36th floor

Penthouse Dining Room

Penthouse Master Bedroom

Comfy penthouse living room with a cozy fireplace

Chef Todd English’s CaVa Brasserie

CaVa Lounge

CaVa Dining Room

InterContinental Times Square
300 W 44th St. btw 8th & 9th Ave.
New York, NY, 10036
Front Desk: +1-212-8034500

Le Grainne Cafe, Chelsea

My favorite place to eat after a stroll on the High Line is an unassuming French cafe in Chelsea called Le Grainne Cafe.

They have a great menu which is consistently delicious, and there is outdoor seating. My favorite dishes are the following:

  • Croque Madame: country bread with ham &  cheese toasted with an egg $14
  • Crêpes Salees - La Danielle: ham and cheese with an egg $12
  • Crêpes Sucrees - Nutella Banane: nutella with bananas $8
  • Salade Niçoise: grilled tuna, boiled eggs, roasted peppers, potatoes, string beans, black olives, and anchovies on a mesclun salad $16
  • Gratinee à l’oignon: french onion soup $9.50

Le Grainne Cafe
183 Ninth Ave (corner of 21st st)
New York, NY 10011
(646) 486-3000
www.legrainnecafe.com

Eataly (A little bit of Italy, NYC style)

Eataly (A little bit of Italy, NYC style)

Bareburger restaurant in the West Village has great outdoor seating for summer nights. The meats are all-natural, 100% organic and there are wheat and gluten-free options.
The California turkey burger in a lettuce wrap was killer, and The Roadhouse with beef was so good we were tempted to order a second. Options include veggie, beef, bison, boar, turkey and ostrich. Really tasty, flavorful food.

Bareburger restaurant in the West Village has great outdoor seating for summer nights. The meats are all-natural, 100% organic and there are wheat and gluten-free options.

The California turkey burger in a lettuce wrap was killer, and The Roadhouse with beef was so good we were tempted to order a second. Options include veggie, beef, bison, boar, turkey and ostrich. Really tasty, flavorful food.