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Mouthing Off

By the Editors of Food & Wine Magazine

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Cookbooks

NYC’s Frankies Spuntino at LA’s Animal Restaurant

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© Kate Krader
The two Franks.

“The Green Team will be in full effect when Frankies comes to Los Angeles,” says Vinny Dotolo, one half of the chef team at LA’s Animal restaurant. On the one hand, he was talking about June 30th, when Frankies Spuntino's Frank Falcinelli and Frank Castronovo travel from Brooklyn to do an amazing one-night-only, pop-up restaurant at Animal with recipes from their outstanding new Kitchen Companion & Cooking Manual. (Pulitzer-Prize-winning writer Jonathan Gold has labeled the upcoming LA dinner the "dude-food summit.") Anyone who saw Kim Severson’s recent New York Times story, "Marijuana Fuels a New Kitchen Culture"—which happened to feature Dotolo, Falcinelli and Castronovo—will have a good idea of what else he might have been talking about.

Seats at the dinner, which seem to be selling out quickly, are $60 (which gets you a cookbook, too) at animalrestaurant.com. Wine pairings are $30 plus.

News

Best Cheap Candy Bar

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Q.bel Candy Bars

Here at Food & Wine we sample all sorts of high-end products, from truffle butter to Champagne. So I find it highly amusing that one of the items that gives our staff happy fits is Q.bel candy bars. The bars are the best kind of Halloween candy: crunchy wafer rolls and bars covered in Belgian chocolate, meticulously sourced from all-natural ingredients. Bars vanish within seconds of being put out for testing, with editors hiding stashes in their desks and absconding with them for family members. Q.bel's two newest flavors, double dark chocolate and mint, were no exception. And at less than $2 a bar, they're an indulgence almost anyone can partake in.

Menus

Omnivore’s Friendly Dinners

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George Mendes

© Jerry Errico
George Mendes will team up with Nuno Mendes for Omnivore NYC.



For two days the world’s most sensational chefs will be exchanging ideas, teaching master classes, and collaborating on spectacular dinners as part of the second annual New York Omnivore Food Festival. The event, run by the French culinary organization Omnivore, will be taking over the Invisible Dog, a factory-turned-art space in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn. “Friendly Dinners”  are being hosted throughout the city, by dream team chef matchups like Paul Liebrandt of Corton and René Redzepi of Noma in Copenhagen. I’m most excited about tomorrow night’s dinner hosted by Aldea’s George Mendes and British phenom Nuno Mendes of London’s recently opened Viajante. Not only do they share a last name, but both chefs are of Portuguese heritage. Their four-course dinner will include Nuno Mendes's much-talked-about skate wing crusted with roasted yeast, mustard gnocchi and brioche. I hear a few tickets are left. Click here for details.

Cocktails

How to Support Gulf Coast Fishermen

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train

© Patrón Tequila
Patrón Tequila Epicurean Express


    
The St. Bernard Project, a Louisiana-based nonprofit that helped rebuild homes after Hurricane Katrina, is now helping the fishermen, shrimpers and oystermen affected by the Gulf Coast oil spill. Their goal is to raise $75,000 to rebuild houses and provide mental health services for fishermen and their families. To raise funds, they’ve partnered with The Patrón Tequila Epicurean Express, a restored 1926 railway car that will be traveling to Chicago, Philadelphia, Washington, DC, New Orleans and Los Angeles this month. Top chefs and mixologists from each city will host Patrón-spiked cocktail parties and dinners aboard the train.

Currently in Chicago, the train's next stop is Track 31 in Washington D.C.’s Union Station June 8th and 9th. Louisiana chefs like Brian Landry of Galatoire’s in New Orleans will be teaming up with DC-area stars like Jeff Tunks, Todd Thrasher, David Guas and Robert Wiedmaier to create Southern-inflected menus that will feature seafood from the Gulf of Mexico.

Click here for tickets and future dates.
 
 

Cocktails

Drinking Vodka Cocktails with the Dallas Cowboys

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© Kate Krader
Dallas Cowboys Kyle Kosier and Jason Witten dwarf chef Tim Love

I’ve seen a lot of cocktails recently. After all, F&W's outstanding and just-out Cocktails 2010 required a lot of tasting and testing. Still, my most recent highlight was co-hosting a party at the Lonesome Dove Western Bistro in Fort Worth, Texas, to launch Belvedere's brand-newest vodka, Pink Grapefruit. How's this for a party, which featured cocktail pairings all the way through dinner?

The Food Texas rock star chef Tim Love making crazy-inspired dishes ranging from pillowy ricotta gnocchi with rattlesnake sausage to Kobe beef cap with crispy fried salsify.
The Cocktails Belvedere’s head mixologist Claire Smith paired all the food with genius, not-too-sweet drinks. That gnocchi, for instance, was served with Cerveza Preparada, a mix of orange vodka, blood orange juice and local micro-brewed wheat beer.
The Guests Local editors, chefs, mixologists. And the Dallas Cowboys! Well, two of them, namely adorable Pro Bowler Jason Witten (the best tight end in the NFC) and guard Kyle Kosier.
The After Party At the funky White Elephant Saloon, complete with shots of Tuaca from their very own Tuaca machine.

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Congratulations to Nicholas Elmi, winner of Top Chef: New Orleans, the 11th season of Bravo's Emmy-Award winning, hit reality series.

Already looking forward to next year (June 19-21, 2015)? Relive your favorite moments from the culinary world's most sensational weekend in the Rocky Mountains.