The coffee obsessive in your life has heard of Geisha (or Gesha), a scarce, reportedly very complex variety of coffee bean that has been sold by some top roasters for more than $100 a bag. Read more >
Since yesterday was Thanksgivukkah—the rare occasion when the first day of Hanukkah and Thanksgiving fall on the same day—it only makes sense that the leftovers from the two-in-one feast should represent both holidays. That’s why Eric and Bruce Bromberg, the owners of New York’s Blue Ribbon empire, invented the turkey and sweet potato knish. “Knishes have always been one of our favorite Jewish comfort foods, so with Hanukkah and Thanksgiving coinciding this year we couldn’t help but get carried away with the idea of the Thanksgiving knish,” says Eric. “Thanksgiving leftovers certainly satisfy straight from your refrigerator, but baking them into a warm, savory knish is a delicious and fun way to elevate them. The combination of the juicy turkey, velvety cream cheese and sweet potatoes is definitely a great way to pay homage to two of our favorite holidays.” Read on for the F&W-exclusive recipe for the sweet-and-savory knish.>>
Christina Tosi's style picks reflect her vintage sensibilities and are perfect for women who love fondue parties and a DIY approach in the kitchen. Read more >
Thanksgiving is undeniably a holiday that celebrates cooking. But that doesn’t mean bartending should be forgotten or brushed aside. Along with baking and roasting, Thanksgiving is a great chance to perfect your mixology skills. Here, five festive drinks so good they’ll rival the pumpkin pie.
Sparkling Pomegranate Punch: Easy to make for a crowd, this bubbly, sweet-tart cocktail combines sparkling wine, dessert wine and deep-red pomegranate juice.
Pomme en Croute: This apple-scented cocktail is a riff on the Brandy Crusta, a classic Cognac cocktail first made in New Orleans in 1852. This version calls for appley Calvados in place of the traditional Cognac.
Rosé Sangria with Cranberries and Apples: Strong but not overly sweet, this seasonal sangria is nicely spiced with cinnamon, anise and cloves. It includes just enough crushed red pepper to give it a tiny kick.
Pomegranate Margaritas: It may not seem like the season for margaritas, but it definitely is the season for these sweet-tart margaritas made with ruby red pomegranate juice. Make one big batch and serve in a pitcher at the table.
Gaelic Punch: A terrific end-of-the-meal cocktail, this hot whiskey punch is best made with a young Irish whiskey. Heat intensifies the tannic edge of older whiskeys; young ones stay smooth.
In this series, food writer, wine lover and cookbook obsessive Kristin Donnelly test drives the most fun and inspiring new books that come across her desk. This week, Sweet by Valerie Gordon. Read More >
Growing up Jewish in suburban Connecticut, I always thought of this time of year as a time essentially to consume: Thanksgiving’s food binging and then Hanukah’s week long gift-a-thon. But my home lately is in the heart of Africa, on a hill in Kigali, Rwanda. My wife, Alissa, and I moved to Rwanda nearly a decade ago for what was to be a two-year stint. We fell in love with the land, its people, and we stayed. Out of the ashes of genocide, the country has progressed tremendously—it offers one of the world’s fastest growing economies and least corrupt governments. But when we moved here, there were no big stores of any kind. Water and electric outages were a several-times-a-day routine. Jobs were also terribly scarce. Alissa realized that what the orphans of the genocide needed most was employment. Rwanda’s government was calling for private investment, not just traditional aid, so we took the plunge to create some jobs and provide hospitality training. It took all of 48 hours to register our new business. We then mortgaged our New York apartment, and Alissa built Heaven, a restaurant with an open-air terrace and beautiful views. Our sous-chef is a local—Solange, the first in her family to go to university. She does the best job with our signature dish: a filet mignon smothered in a chimichurri composed of cassava leaves and spices. The cassava leaves are local, as is the beef, which is free range, and organic. That dish, alongside cardamom-infused pineapple with sesame brittle and homemade coconut ice cream for dessert, is a delicious way to reduce poverty.
What Alissa did in creating Heaven has been reflected across the country: Rwanda is bristling with public improvements and new businesses. There’s free wifi on the buses, the roads are all paved, the streets are spotless and safe, and it’s a wonderful, easy place to raise a family. Until the holidays. Then you have to get creative. US Embassy employees have diplomatic pouch privileges that allow for Amazon deliveries and even frozen Butterball turkeys, but the rest of us improvise. Early on, we learned to brine chicken and oven roast it, and it actually tastes better than turkey, or we tell ourselves it does. Out in the villages one day, I came across a dozen very skinny live turkeys for sale. I took apart an old satellite dish to make a sort of Frank Gehry turkey pen, and we fattened them right up. Yesterday, it was time to say goodbye to them so we could make a feast for our friends in Rwanda.
Of course, I couldn’t do it myself. Our friend Joel, who narrowly escaped death at the height of the genocide’s frenzy, has no sympathy for these obnoxious birds. I showed him a YouTube video on humane and kosher turkey killing, and we said a little prayer for these birds that will feed dozens.
Tonight, under Heaven’s little-white-lighted trees, Americans, Europeans, and Rwandans will enjoy an American Thanksgiving (we’ll light the menorah too of course). In additional to mashed potatoes, we’ll offer matoke puree, mashed up green bananas with plenty of butter. With a bit of smuggled matzah meal we’ll have crispy potato latkes with incredible potatoes from the volcanic soils up north. And for those in the mood for drink, we’ll have urwagwa – local banana beer – at the ready. The American ambassador and his wife want to come, so they too can give thanks for our little community and the privilege to work in a country with such ambitions and achievements, after such a nightmare.
This holiday season, when you are at your table with your friends or family and raising a glass to the good done and yet to do in the world, we will be raising our glasses, too.
Like her jewelry, Cathy Waterman's tabletop designs are inspired by nature. The collection, which she has been working on for two years, is available at Barneys. Read more >
Tempranillo, the signature red grape of Spain, is also one of those varieties that underscores why people find wine so perplexing at times. It is, of course, Tempranillo; but depending on where you are, the grape is also known as Aragones, Cencibel, Santo Stefano, Tinta de Nava, Tinta del Pais, Tinta Roriz, Ull de Llebre and about 20 other names. It's a little like being named Bob, but upon being introduced to people saying, "Oh, but in Dallas I'm known as Stan, and in Denver I'm known as Vladimir, and of course in Vancouver I'm known as Enrico the Magnificent." In other words, confusing. Thankfully, most of the time Tempranillo is just Tempranillo.
Here are a few bargains to look for, plus one of the best versions from California. Read more >
Coffee, wine, beer, cocktails—if it’s made well and it’s potable, then F&W editors will drink it. Here's what we tried this past week. READ MORE>>
After a night on the line, most chefs have a go-to drink, from cheap beer to a house bartender's expert cocktail. Here, star chefs reveal their favorite drinks.
Chef Fabio Trabocchi of Washington DC’s Fiola loves a Manhattan. “I first had one when I arrived in the States,” he says. “I always associate it with the holidays. Even though it’s served chilled, there’s something warming and festive about it. The one we do here at Fiola is one of the best I’ve ever tasted: Stir Maker’s Mark, Carpano Antica vermouth and Angostura bitters with ice, then strain the drink into a chilled glass that's been lightly coated with the syrup from a jar of Amarena cherries. It’s light and balanced, not too sweet. You can happily get into your second because the first goes down so easily.”