Web-Exclusive: 15 More Must-Tastes.
Carabineros. California spot prawns. Every year, chefs seem to lust after a new crustacean. This year it’s langoustines, coveted for their delicate texture and sweet taste.
02 A Burgundy at La Paulée de New York
Given the fickle nature of Burgundy, collectors are often disappointed. But at New York City’s annual La Paulée Burgundy tasting, on March 3, happiness is virtually guaranteed. New this year is a dinner cohosted by Domaine de la Romanée-Conti and Domaine Bonneau du Martray, with vintages from the past three decades (danieljohnnes.com).
03 Good Fast-food Noodles
Wagamama, the hugely popular London-based Japanese noodle bar, is coming to Boston this spring with dishes like yaki soba—with egg, shrimp, sesame seeds, fried shallots and ginger (wagamama.com).
Anything Greek 04-07
The flavors of Greece—from ingredients to wine—are coming to the United States. Here are our favorites.
04 Greek Olive Oil
Unfiltered, organic Biolea olive oil, from the Astrikas Estate in Crete, aced F&W’s taste test.
05 Greek Wine
Greece is turning out some phenomenal wines. Producer Domaine Tselepos makes a crisp, dry sparkling wine from the country’s native Moschofilero grape.
06 Greek Cuisine
At Parea restaurant in New York City, Michael Symon (an F&W Best New Chef 1998) prepares dishes such as fritterlike keftedes made from zucchini (36 E. 20th St.; 212-777-8448).
07 Greek Spices
Greek cosmetics company Korres moves into food with its full-flavored Kozani saffron, above (korres.com).
08 A Greek Cooking-school Feast
Noted Greek cookbook author Aglaia Kremezi has a bad case of philoxenia, which means she thrives on playing host to strangers. That ethos characterizes her year-old cooking school, Kea Artisanal, on the island of Kea. During each eight-day session, students visit beaches and groves in search of ingredients and explore the kitchens of Kremezi’s friends (from $2,165; keartisanal.com).
09 Corn Bread with Scallions
Updated Chuckwagong Recipes
Recipe: Corn Bread with Scallions
Author Paula Disbrowe
After cooking in Europe and writing and editing in New York, Paula Disbrowe packed her high heels and moved to Texas, where she spent three years as chef at Hart & Hind, a fitness retreat and cattle ranch. One result: Cowgirl Cuisine, due out in March, with updated chuckwagon recipes like this tender, lightly sweet corn bread.
10 Argentine Malbec
Sucre, an exceedingly fashionable Buenos Aires restaurant, has a wine list full of cult-worthy Malbecs (Sucre 676; 011-54-11-4782-9082).
Craft Beer in a Can 11-13
Why are more microbrewers opting for cans? Aluminum is better at keeping out light and oxygen—beer’s enemies.
11 Phoenix Pale Ale
A notably spicy and hoppy pale ale from Sly Fox Beer.
12 Dale’s Pale Ale
A rich and balanced beer from Oskar Blues Brewery.
13 Porkslap Pale Ale
A malty, floral brew from Butternuts Beer & Ale.
All beers available from Bierkraft, 718-230-7600.
14 The Thoroughbred
Recipe: The Thoroughbred
Bartenders have been infusing vodka for years; now they’re joyfully infusing bourbon with everything from black cherries to bacon. Chris Beveridge from 12 Baltimore in Kansas City, Missouri, favors apples, cinnamon and vanilla.
15 Aspen Kettle Corn
Anyone who visits Aspen should buy a bag (or four) of Jeff White’s addictive kettle corn, which he sells at the city’s Saturday outdoor market and, now, online (aspenkettlecorn.com).
16 Great Canadian Wines from the Okanagan Valley
The name of the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia, Canada, isn’t easy to pronounce, nor are its wines easy to find (only about 8,500 cases from all of British Columbia are exported to the United States annually). But the region itself, which borders Washington State, is an exciting place to visit—and to grow grapes, especially Pinot Noir, Pinot Blanc and Riesling. Seek out bottlings from top producers like Laughing Stock, Black Hills Estate and Adora Estate. A trek to Toasted Oak Wine Bar & Grill in the Okanagan town of Oliver, with its impressive selection of more than 300 local wines, will help you get your fill. DETAILS 34881 97th St., Oliver, B.C.; 250-498-4867.
17 Scandinavia’s Avant-garde Cuisine
Until recently, Scandinavian cuisine hasn’t had a reputation for daring innovation. But a new generation of chefs who’ve trained at places like El Bulli in Spain are using the best regional ingredients (horse mussels, cloudberries, musk ox) to create dishes unlike any others on the planet. In Copenhagen, Rene Redzepi of Noma, Rasmus Grønbech of Prémisse and Bo Bech of Restaurant Paustian are the chefs to watch. Among Sweden’s culinary stars are Fredrik Andersson of Mistral in Stockholm and Magnus Ek of Oaxen Skärgårdskrog, in the nearby Swedish archipelago.
18 House-made Mixers
Fed up with bland tonics and too-sweet sodas, mixologists and chefs are creating their own. At Cyrus in Healdsburg, California, Annie Clemmons crafts rhubarb and butterscotch sodas. Todd Thrasher at PX in Alexandria, Virginia, makes more than a dozen bitters and his own tonics, sodas and vermouth.
19 Japanese Sweets
There are many reasons to visit the futuristic new Tadao Ando-designed Omotesando Hills complex in Tokyo. One is the innovative wagashi (sweets) at Toraya Café. Try the soy-milk jelly with a sauce made from white chocolate and matcha (green tea) or the adzuki bean-and-cacao gâteau with ginger cream (toraya-cafe.co.jp).
20 Truffle Teas
A healthy new way to kill a chocolate craving: Mighty Leaf’s tru±e teas. The Mocha Pu-erh Tru±e combines aged tea leaves and cacao nibs ($16 for 4 oz; mightyleaf.com).
21 Dan Dan Noodles
SAVORY FOODS BY PASTRY CHEFS
Dan Dan Noodles
Pastry chef Joanne Chang
Joanne Chang, owner of Flour Bakery + Café in Boston, will set aside her rolling pin to make stir-fries and noodle dishes like this peanutty dan dan at a second restaurant, due to open this summer.
22 Cocktails That Don’t Pack a Punch
Bartenders are mixing low-alcohol drinks using Italian aperitifs—Campari, Cynar and (the new favorite) orangey Aperol.
23 Maple Flakes
A Canadian maple syrup company makes these delicately crunchy Equinox flakes. Sprinkle them on ice cream or oatmeal, or stir them into pancake batter ($9 for 2.5 oz; decacer.com).
24 Boutique Aussie Wines
Asiana restaurant in Melbourne may be the best place in Australia to find elusive bottles like Grosset’s minerally 2006 Polish Hill Riesling (181 Victoria Ave.; 011-61-3-9696-6688).
25 Artisanal Swiss Cheeses
Among the most phenomenal are herbal, nutty Bündner Bergkäse Andeerer, a firm cow’s-milk cheese, and Gruyère Vieux, aged for 16 months (formaggiokitchen.com).
26 A Meal at Les Ombres
The new Les Ombres restaurant at Paris’s Jean Nouvel-designed Musée du Quai Branly has killer Eiffel Tower views—plus jellied gazpacho and vitello tonnato from Joël Robuchon protégé Arno Busquet (27 Quai Branly, 7th Arr.; 011-33-1-47-53-68-00).
27 Peruvian Food
Lima chef Gastón Acurio wants to become Peru’s culinary ambassador to the world. Early this year he’ll be opening branches of his Astrid y Gastón restaurant in Panama City and Madrid, both serving his spectacular chile-marinated octopus—a riff on a Peruvian street-food staple. He’s also just launched a branch of his La Mar Peruvian Cebichería in Mexico City, with others planned in Washington, DC, and San Diego. The tuna seviche with tamarind leche de tigre (chile, lime, red onion and cilantro) is not to be missed.
28 Tiny Sweets
Toronto’s Dufflet bakery has brought its Small Indulgences sweets to the U.S., and they’re more inspired than the name suggests. Pistachios are coated with crackly caramel and covered in milk chocolate, then dipped in confectioners’ sugar; hazelnuts get the same treatment but with a dusting of cocoa ($7 for 3 oz; dufflet.com).
29 A Chicago Power Meal
Mohammad Islam, formerly chef at Hollywood’s Chateau Marmont, and his wife, Malika Ameen, are the power couple behind Chicago’s Aigre Doux. He makes the truffle-roasted chicken; she does the sticky toffee pudding (230 W. Kinzie St.; 312-329-9400).
30 Virgin Strawberry Bellinis
Mocktails for Grown-ups
Recipe: Virgin Strawberry Bellinis
The latest nonalcoholic mocktails at top restaurants and bars are as inventive and delicious as cocktails. David Slape of Manhattan’s Del Posto makes a Virgin Strawberry Bellini with strawberry puree and sparkling apple cider from Normandy.
31 A Preflight Wine Flight
Finally, a really good airport wine bar. Vino Volo operates four of them— at Washington Dulles, Baltimore-Washington, Sacramento and Seattle-Tacoma—and has plans to launch more (vinovolo.com).
32 The Whole Tree
It’s the herbivore’s version of head-to-tail eating. Consider how three Chicago restaurants are using various parts of the peach tree:
Peach Leaves MK the Restaurant infuses ice cream with peach leaves.
Unripe Fruit It flavors a salsa for smoked trout and a vinaigrette at HotChocolate.
Wood Osteria di Tramonto smokes pork shanks over peach wood.
33 Japanese Frites
Updated French Fries
Recipe: Japanese Frites
Chef Gene Kato
French fries have gone way beyond the prosaic russet potato. At Fork in Philadelphia, for instance, Ellen Yin features yuca and taro fries on her menu. Then there are the irresistible fries created by Gene Kato for the Japonais restaurants originating in Chicago (the newest location: Las Vegas). Made with sweet potatoes, the frites are seasoned with a blend of Japanese flavorings, including nori flakes and the tingly spice mix shichimi togarashi.
Market Tastings 34-36
The best new markets are as exciting for their architecture as for their eating opportunities. Here, three great ones.
34 Santa Caterina Market
Barcelona Santa Caterina Market recently reopened after a seven-year renovation by noted architects Enric Miralles and Benedetta Tagliabue. Underneath a theatrically undulating roof with 200,000 colored tiles are dozens of stalls run by Spain’s finest purveyors (look for the olive oil shop Olisoliva) and one of the city’s most happening restaurants, Cuines Santa Caterina; try the asparagus, grilled on a plancha, with romesco (Francesc Cambó 16; 011-34-93-319-5740 or mercatsantacaterina.net).
35 Fallon & Byrne
Dublin Housed in a former telephone exchange with cast-iron pillars and century-old parquet floors, Fallon & Byrne is the place to buy pippin apples from Tipperary, aged beef from County Galway, and smoked salmon, mackerel and eel from West Cork. Downstairs in the cellar is a well-stocked wine bar and shop; upstairs is the Restaurant at Fallon & Byrne, which turns all those great Irish ingredients into stellar meals (11-17 Exchequer St.; 011-353-1-472-1010).
36 Mill City Farmers’ Market
Minneapolis On Saturdays from May through October, outstanding regional farmers and food artisans congregate at the Mill City Farmers’ Market, in the former train shed of a General Mills flour mill (now a museum). The 40 vendors include Shepherd’s Way Farms, which makes the supremely good Manchego-like Friesago (Second St. S. and Chicago Ave. S.; millcityfarmersmarket.org).
37 Chef Marc Vetri’s Pizzas
Vetri, a 10-table dining room in Philadelphia, is one of the most exquisite Italian restaurants in America. Now Marc Vetri, an F&W Best New Chef 1999, is about to open a second venture, called Osteria, serving wood-fired pizzas, house-cured salumi and dishes like grilled hen thighs stuffed with prosciutto and gnocchi with spicy lamb ragù. Details 640 N. Broad St.; 215-763-0920 or osteriaphilly.com.
38 Bacon Baklava
Recipe: Bacon Baklava
Pastry chef Brian Logsdon
Whether it’s a crisp shard garnishing bread pudding or crumbles on maple ice cream, bacon is subtly making its way into desserts. And not so subtly: When bacon impresario Dan Philips of the Grateful Palate collaborated on a bacon-themed dinner at The Brown hotel in Louisville, Kentucky, pastry chef Brian Logsdon created this bacon-studded baklava for dessert.
39 The Next Baby Lettuce
With cute, crinkly, supercrunchy leaves that are just three inches long, sucrine has become Paris chefs’ favorite lettuce. Sorry, mesclun.
40 Southern Italian Wine
No single wine may better symbolize the renaissance of southern Italian wine than Taurasi, the noble red of Campania. Made from the Aglianico grape, it’s a conundrum—rustic yet refined, long-lived yet often accessible in its youth. Seek out the 2001 Villa Raiano and the voluptuous 2002 Feudi di San Gregorio.
41 Icelandic Ingredients
The promise of purity has fueled interest in items such as lava rock-filtered spring water, mild free-range lamb and Skyr (pronounced "skeer"), a nonfat, yogurtlike cheese. Expect them soon on the shelves at Whole Foods and other U.S. supermarkets.
42 Healthy Snack Bars That Pass the Taste Test
Neither aggressively crunchy nor sticky, hemp nut-based Alpsnack bars are pleasantly crumbly, lightly sweet and surprisingly fresh. Try the apricot-cranberry ($33 for a 12-pack; drbronner.com).
Whole Grains 43-45
Loved by the Aztecs, this high-protein grain is mildly grassy with a slight crunch. It can be cooked so it’s thick like polenta or almost as fluffy as couscous. Stir it into soups or pop it like corn.
An ancient variety of wheat, it has a natural sweetness and a buttery quality. When cooked, the grains have a delightful chew.
Commonly regarded as a grain, buckwheat is actually a kind of herb with edible seeds. The secret to preventing it from turning mushy: Coat it with egg white before cooking.
46 Rosa Mexicano’s Salsas
Try a nuevo mexicano recipe from Rosa’s New Mexican Table, due out in May. It’s the first book by Roberto Santibañez, chef of the expanding Rosa Mexicano restaurant empire.
47 Custom-bred Pork
Pork fanatic Cesare Casella, the chef at Manhattan’s Maremma, has helped breed a nicely fatty pig—a cross between English Large Black and Yorkshire.
48 Syrah from South Africa
South African winemakers, long champions of the odd native grape Pinotage, thankfully have a new favorite: Syrah (often called Shiraz, depending on the producer’s whim). The 2003 Fairview Solitude Shiraz, 2002 Culraithin Syrah, 2003 Columella Syrah and 2005 Black Rock Red are all standouts. Best value: the bright, easy-drinking 2005 MAN Vintners Shiraz ($10).
49 Hot Hunan Shrimp
Regional Chinese Cooking
Author Fuchsia Dunlop
British cookbook author Fuchsia Dunlop was the first foreigner—and one of only four women in her class—to study full-time at China’s leading culinary school, the Sichuan Institute of Higher Cuisine. In February, she’ll publish her second book, Revolutionary Chinese Cookbook, about Hunan culture and cuisine. This stir-fried shrimp, like most of her recipes, is remarkably doable—and bracingly spicy.
50 Fire-pit Foods
SpitJack just launched "The Beast," an electric rotisserie that can spin more than 200 pounds of meat over a fire pit ($885; spitjack.com). NapaStyle is selling a portable fire pit with a grill grate and a nifty hand-cranked rotisserie ($599; napastyle.com).
51 Clandestine Dinners
Roving restaurants are the food world’s answer to the speakeasy. In that spirit, chef Hal Jasa of Underground Inc. in Des Moines lugs portable burners around the city to cook for paying guests in clandestine locations, from rooftops to industrial lofts (desmoinesunderground.com).
52 A Veal-muenster Burger
Father’s Office has been on Montana Avenue in Santa Monica, California, for over 50 years, but the crowds didn’t arrive until Sang Yoon bought the place in 2000 and began serving his extraordinary dry-aged beef burgers. The good news is that two more branches of Father’s Office will open this year—one in Culver City’s Helms Bakery Building, the other in a to-be-revealed Newport Beach spot. Yoon will also expand the menu to include veal-Muenster burgers with sweet-and-sour cabbage slaw (1018 Montana Ave.; 310-393-2337).
53 African Spices and Teas
What happens when intellectuals get together to save native plants, develop local business and help impoverished communities in Africa? They launch a line of spices and herbal teas called Mpuntu. The vanilla-scented mondia whitei spice is exotic; the lemongrass tea from Zambia is soothingly familiar (asnapp.org).
54 American Raw-milk Cheeses
Aged for more than 60 days, these unpasteurized cheeses are both legal and incredibly good. Try Dairy’s Everona Piedmont, a buttery sheep’s-milk; Jasper Hill’s Bayley Hazen Blue; and Twig Farm’s Goat Tomme.
55 Wine From Up-and-Coming Regions
Douro Valley, Portugal
news Producers have been crafting concentrated red wines that may one day rival their famed ports, using the same grapes (including Touriga Nacional).
top names Look for the 2003 Chryseia and 2004 Prazo de Roriz (at $15, a great value).
Guadalupe Valley, Mexico
news Most people in the U.S. don’t even know Mexico makes wine, but Valle de Guadalupe producers are creating very good Merlot-Cabernet blends.
top names The 2003 Adobe Guadalupe Gabriel, new to the U.S., is impressively well-balanced.
Long Island, New York
news Thirty years after the first vines were planted, Long Island wines are finally engendering both respect and public demand, inside and outside of New York State.
top names Names to know: Osprey’s Dominion, Lenz and Channing Daughters.
news The best whites—blends that may include Pinot Gris, Chardonnay and Pinot Blanc—resemble those of Italy’s Friuli region, which borders Slovenia.
top names Notable producers are Kogl, Quercus and Movia (Slovenia’s superstar).
news Champagne house Louis Roederer staked a claim on Tasmania in 1986, creating the first of several notable Pinot Noir-dominant sparkling wines.
top names Jansz and Clover Hill turn out top Pinot Noir-based Tasmanian sparklers.
56 Automat Wine
The Italian-made Enomatic, now in more than 500 U.S. wine shops, bars and restaurants, dispenses wine samples like an oversize espresso machine. At Union Square Wines and Spirits in Manhattan and Wine Gallery in Brookline, Massachusetts, customers can try high-end wines before investing in a bottle.
57 Bluegrass Cobbler
New Drinks from Multimedia Mixologists
Recipe: Bluegrass Cobbler
Cocktail consultant Tony Abou-Ganim is already a media personality, with a gig on the Fine Living Network. This year he’ll compete on Iron Chef America and release a DVD entitled Mix It Up, with recipes like this Bluegrass Cobbler.
58 Quick Mediterranean
Leon, a casual restaurant with four London locations, is the place to go for a sweet-potato falafel and other fast, fresh food. Allegra McEvedy, an alum of the renowned River Cafe, oversees the two-year-old mini chain’s menus (leonrestaurants.co.uk).
59 Poke to Go
Honolulu’s dazzling new Tsukiji Fish Market and Restaurant, inspired by the Tokyo original, has a make-your-own poke bar with the essentials for the Hawaiian raw-fish dish (Ala Moana Center, 1450 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 4250; 808-258-3767).
60 An Adrià Innovation
The oft-imitated, singularly talented chef Ferran Adrià of Spain’s El Bulli wants to help other mad-scientist cooks like him. His Texturas line includes ingredients and tools (hard-to-find powders, intricate spoons and syringes) for creating his famous airy foams, fruit-flavored "caviar," consommé pastas and other fanciful foods (from $24; tienda.com).
61 Green Bean Salad with Toasted Pecans
Cookbooks from Bloggers
Blogger Clotilde Dusoulier
This recipe is from Clotilde Dusoulier, a 27-year-old Parisian who left a career as a software engineer to focus on her hugely successful food blog, Chocolate & Zucchini. Now she’s written a book called Chocolate & Zucchini, due out in May, with recipes for everyday French food, accompanied by quirky musings. About trimming the green beans for this salad, she writes, "My fingers busy themselves instinctively—much like those of people who knit without looking—while I let my mind wander, thinking about the rest of the menu, plans for the weekend and whether I should cut my hair."
62 Pea and Mint Risotto
Recipe: Pea and Mint Risotto
Author Patricia Wells
Patricia Wells, the Paris-based restaurant critic for the International Herald Tribune, is also a prolific cookbook author. Her 10th work is Vegetable Harvest, due out in April. The inspiration for the book? "Rather than creating a meal around the fish, the poultry or the meat," she writes, "I found that I began putting the vegetables first." Here, she adds peas to a rich, cheesy risotto unconventionally flavored with fresh mint.
63 Deconstructed Negroni
San Francisco’s new Bourbon & Branch evokes the fun of the Prohibition era with its unmarked door and unlisted number. The 24-page menu includes a Deconstructed Negroni—ice-cold gin and sweet vermouth with a side of Campari "caviar" (bourbonandbranch.com).
64 Singapore’s Latest
Famous in the 1960s and ’70s, Singapore’s Majestic Restaurant has just reopened—and it’s one of Asia’s most thrilling launches, with dishes like soft-shell crab in creamy lime sauce (31-37 Bukit Pasoh Rd.; 011-65-6511-4718).
65 Freeze-dried Flavors
Chefs are creating intense new flavors with freeze-dried ingredients. Keyah Grande in Pagosa Springs, Colorado, serves an avant-garde shrimp grits sweetened with freeze-dried corn (13211 Hwy. 160 W.; 970-731-1160).
66 Catered Cocktails
Further proof that America is having a cocktail renaissance: The movement’s Brunelleschi, Sasha Petraske (owner of New York City’s Milk & Honey and Little Branch), has partnered with Christy Pope and Chad Solomon to found a cocktail catering service called Cuff & Buttons. For an hourly fee, Cuff & Buttons mixologists will prepare classic and exotic cocktails like the Monkey Gland—gin, orange juice, homemade grenadine and pastis. DETAILS 212-625-2090 or cuffandbuttons.com.
67 Exotic Ice Cream
Creative confectioner Vosges has begun selling ice cream—including one with wattleseed, an Australian spice redolent of vanilla, roasted nuts and coffee ($7 per pint; vosgeschocolate.com).
68 2006 Sauvignon Blancs from New Zealand
When an entire country is famous for a single grape, it’s a good thing when the harvest of that particular grape goes well. Happily, the harvest of 2006 was a huge success for New Zealand’s Sauvignon Blanc producers; in fact, some winemakers are saying that the wines, now in stores, may be some of the best they have created to date. The 2006 harvest was also a sizable one, exceeding the record set in 2004 by 43 percent—which means there will be plenty of bottles around. Look for crisp, zingy examples from wineries such as Sacred Hill, Saint Clair, Babich and Steve Bird; at $13, Brancott’s bottling may be this year’s best deal in new-world Sauvignon Blanc.
69 Roasted Cauliflower with Ajvar Dressing
Recipe: Roasted Cauliflower with Ajvar Dressing
F&W’s Melissa Rubel
The Balkans are the source of one of the best condiments in the grocery store: ajvar, a red pepper and eggplant relish. Stir it into crème fraîche for a dip, or mix it into a vinaigrette, as in this recipe.
70 Battered Cod with Marie Rose Sauce
Recipe: Battered Cod with Marie Rose Sauce
Chef Cathal Armstrong
At his new Eamonn’s a Dublin Chipper, Dublin-born Cathal Armstrong (an F&W Best New Chef 2006) brings the fish-and-chips tradition to Alexandria, Virginia. Armstrong serves two types of fish, plus fries and a host of sauces, like the one below.
Newly Legal Foods 71-74
Determined cooks have long tried to smuggle these foods into the United States. Now they don’t have to defy the law.
Called the queen of fruit for its antioxidant-rich, sweet-tart flesh, the mangosteen may soon be legally imported to the United States from Thailand (where the fruit is plentiful) now that the USDA is reviewing a proposal. Cooks who have tasted the forbidden fruit (like pastry chef Sherry Yard of Spago in Beverly Hills) are eagerly anticipating the ruling.
72 Sichuan Peppercorns
Banned for years by the USDA because they can potentially carry a canker that harms citrus trees, these fragrant, citrusy, tingly peppercorns are available again ($4.50 for 4 oz; thespicehouse.com).
73 Wild Artichokes
Paperwork glitches and permit issues have kept these tangy, bite-size Italian artichokes out of the United States until recently. Now cooks are using them on pizza or in pastas and salads, but artichoke fiends will love them as a snack, straight from the jar ($20 for 9.5 oz; zingermans.com).
74 Ibérico Ham
Ham-heads can finally get their fix of the fatty, fabled jamón ibérico, made in western Spain. (The most prized, bellota, is made from pigs that feast on acorns.) Ibérico sausages are already here, and La Tienda is taking advance orders for whole hams (from $50 per pound; tienda.com).
75 Pork Fried Rice
Recipe: Pork Fried Rice
Chef Takashi Yagihashi
Chicago shoppers are now in luck: Takashi Yagihashi (an F&W Best New Chef 2000) has just opened a Japanese-style noodle shop in the Macy’s on State Street. On his menu is this pork fried rice, his favorite childhood after-school snack.
76 Fruit Chips
Crispy Green’s freeze-dried chips—apricot, peach and apple—taste like pure fruit and have a light, airy crunch ($8 for 6 bags; crispygreen.com).
77 Kaiseki a Japanese Feast
The fabled Kyoto restaurant Kikunoi is renowned for kaiseki, a 500-year-old Japanese dining ritual with origins in the traditional tea ceremony. Kaiseki chefs prepare seasonal tasting menus using precious ingredients—like sea bream wrapped in bamboo leaves and tied with gold and silver string. Kikunoi’s chef, Yoshihiro Murata, has just published his first cookbook in English, Kaiseki, which celebrates the beauty of this cuisine. A meal in one of Kikunoi’s 11 private dining rooms is the best way to get the full experience (Gion Maruyama Makuzugahara, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto; 011-81-75-561-0015).
78 Sri Lankan Hoppers
At his third restaurant, called Jamie Kennedy at the Gardiner, Toronto star Jamie Kennedy features Sri Lankan hoppers—bowl-shaped, rice-flour pancakes with fillings like curried zucchini and squash (111 Queen’s Park, Toronto; 416-362-1957).
79 Marqués de Riscal Rioja
The long-awaited Marqués de Riscal City of Wine in Rioja, a venerable winery reimagined by architect Frank Gehry, is open at last, with a hotel, spa, restaurant and tasting room (marquesderiscal.com).
80 Fortnum & Mason’s Best
After a huge renovation, London’s 300-year-old food purveyor Fortnum & Mason has launched a fresh-food floor. Also new: a wine bar and an ice cream parlor (181 Piccadilly, London; 011-44-20-7734-8040).
81 Melted Marshmallow
At Avenues at the Peninsula Chicago Hotel: sage-laced marshmallows with candied prosciutto and pickled pear. When a server pours pear-almond bisque on top, the marshmallows melt (108 E. Superior St., Chicago; 312-573-6754).
82 Fish Chile Peppers
Rumored to be a secret ingredient in Old Bay Seasoning, these rare, fiery chiles change color—from white with green streaks to fire-engine red—as they ripen (kitchengardenseeds.com).
83 Feta Cheesecake & Wine-Poached Dates
Desserts Using Pungent Cheese
Recipe: Feta Cheesecake & Wine-Poached Dates
Chef Eric Estrella
Pastry chefs’ new obsession: pungent cheeses. Eric Estrella of François Payard’s new Manhattan restaurant, InTent, adds tangy feta to cheesecake topped with wine-poached dates.
A Meal at a Hot New Restaurant 84-88
84 Gordon Ramsay
New York City Famed for his volatile temper on the reality-TV show Hell’s Kitchen, global superchef Gordon Ramsay has opened Gordon Ramsay at the London in New York City—his first U.S. venture (151 W. 54th St.; 212-468-8888).
85 St. Alban
London The latest from Midas restaurateurs Chris Corbin and Jeremy King serves Mediterranean dishes cooked in a wood-fired oven. A reservation at this spot (which, at press time, was set to open by the end of 2006) may be as coveted as one at its sibling, The Wolseley (4-12 Regent St.; 011-44-20-7499-8558).
Paris This groovy, haute bistro with video projections of white clouds on the walls is run by Guy Martin (who earned three Michelin stars at Le Grand Véfour). His modern French dishes transcend any setting (19 rue Bréa, 6th Arr.; 011-33-1-43-27-08-80).
87 Rockpool Bar & Grill
Melbourne Neil Perry, one of Australia’s best-known chefs, has just opened Rockpool Bar & Grill, an offshoot of Sydney’s Rockpool. Steak is a specialty here, including T-bones and Australian wagyu rib eyes dry-aged in-house (Crown casino complex, 8 Whiteman St.; 011-61-3-8648-1900).
Hong Kong Pierre Gagnaire is known as one of Paris’s most ingenious three-star chefs. Now he’s creating inspired dishes like scallop roe with roasted-potato ice cream at Pierre, his restaurant on the 25th floor of the Mandarin Oriental hotel (5 Connaught Rd.; 011-852-2825-4001).
89 Sushi at David Bouley’s Cooking Classes
Notoriously enigmatic chef David Bouley is demystifying food at Manhattan cooking demos, focusing on subjects like cheese or sushi ($175 per class; 212-964-2525 or davidbouley.com).
90 Malt-ball Cake
What do bakers now have in common with brewers? Some of them are using fresh malt. Matt Lewis of Brooklyn’s Baked gets malt for his malt-ball cake from neighbor Sixpoint Craft Ales. "We give them sweets as barter," he says (359 Van Brunt St.; 718-222-0345).
91 High-tech Caviar
Food and technology are coming together in extraordinary ways. Italian sturgeon farm Agroittica Lombarda, for instance, implants microchips in the heads of its ﬁsh; using a transponder, it can track details like what, exactly, a fish has eaten. The goal: to pinpoint the best future spawners. The result: unusually rich and nutty roe called Calvisius ($80 for 0.7 oz from Dean & DeLuca; deananddeluca.com).
92 Mark Herold Cabernet
Napa superstar Mark Herold makes wine with only hand-picked, ultraripe grapes, aging it in new French oak for at least 18 months. His methods produce some of the valley’s most talked-about Cabs—including Merus, Buccella, Harris Estate and Kamen Estate, a relative bargain at $50 a bottle.
93 Italian in Boca
Angela Hartnett, a Michelin-starred chef in London and Gordon Ramsay protégé, is launching the Italian-focused Cielo at the Boca Raton Resort & Club this winter—for hotel guests and club members only (501 E. Camino Real; 561-447-3640).
New Global Flavors 94-98
Avid importers have been bringing fabulous new ingredients to America.
94 Croatian Olive Oil
O&Co. sells grassy Veralda Luciano Visintin—the Sauvignon Blanc of oils ($49 for 16.8 oz; oliviersandco.com).
95 Spanish Matiz Piparras
Tangy peppers from the Basque Country ($6.50; casaoliver.com).
96 Peperoni Cruschi
Mild chiles from Italy are sun-dried, then fried to sweet, smoky crispness ($19; zingermans.com).
97 African Honey
Caramelly Zambezi Honey is gathered along Zambian streams ($14 for 12 oz; zambezihoney.com).
98 Aussie Raisins on the Vine
These Muscatel raisins taste so rich they almost seem chocolaty ($20 per pound; 34-degrees.com).
99 Le Demon Vert
Cocktail Books from Cool Bars
Recipe: Le Demon Vert
The Art of the Bar, from San Francisco institution Absinthe Brasserie & Bar, is one of the first recipe books from a great bar. It includes Le Demon Vert, a potent concoction built around the anise-flavored spirit Absente (theartofthebar.com).
100 Brûléed Key Lime Tarts
Brûléed Key Lime Tarts
Chef Gray Kunz
When the famed Gray Kunz opens Grayz in Manhattan this spring, he plans to pair every dish with a cocktail. What to have with this outrageous Oreo-crusted riff on Key lime pie? An Elderflower Martini.