© Jen Murphy
Butcher-chic design at J.E.M. in Boston's South End.
I was in Boston for the weekend and while bakery hopping through the South End I stumbled upon a fantastic new design shop called J.E.M. The store has a very John Derian-esque feel to it with cool pieces like organic ceramic pots from Susan Raber Bray, and apothecary bottles and bar carts made from reclaimed steel. It felt like a quirkily curated curiosity shop-cum-museum.
J.E.M. has also started hosting in-store salons with artists and designers. South End artist Isabelle Abramson, who sells her gorgeous, delicate, doily-patterned porcelain bowls there, will be in-shop this Thursday.
The store also doubles as a showroom for owner/designer Jane Miller who is responsible for the awesome furnishings made from repurposed wood and metal. In addition to enormous chunky dining and coffee tables, there are clever pieces like a terrarium that Miller crafted from a broken table. My favorite piece was an enormous sign (pictured) salvaged from Faneuil Hall Marketplace that embraces Boston’s current butcher and beast obsession. Apparently it’s been confusing some South End shoppers. “We had an elderly couple come in and try to order lamb chops the other day,” the girl behind the counter told me. I can’t help but think a design-butcher shop would probably be a great new trend.
© Alessandra Bulow
Cradle of Life flaming cocktail at Painkiller.
I can’t stop talking about tiki. Not because of the Tiki Barber
sex scandal, but because I recently got an exclusive preview of the tiki drinks that Richard Boccato and Giuseppe Gonzalez (Dutch Kills
) are going to be making at their supercool new bar Painkiller
, which is opening in early May in New York City.
In addition to smooth daiquiris, flights of mini zombie drinks and all-you-can-eat hot dogs (“They’re not going to be fancy, Grade-A or kosher, but they’ll be free,” said Boccato), they’ll be serving fantastic rum-based flaming cocktails like the Cradle of Life (made with spiced rum, white rum, lime and orange juices and almond syrup; the green chartreuse on top is set on fire, pictured). The menu will also include communal drinks served in custom-made ceramic vessels called Scorpion Bowls. Each Scorpion Bowl will be named after a 1970s NYC street gang, like the Electric Coffin, a large coffin-shaped bowl that will billow steam from a hidden chamber for dry ice in its underbelly.
Boccato got the idea for the Scorpion Bowl names while narrating a friend’s documentary about the gangs and he's continuing the urbanized-oasis theme by asking some of NYC’s classic old-school graffiti artists to tag the walls of the bar.
“Half of tiki is about presentation,” said Boccato. “Tiki bars usually look like a dive, a Disney ride or Grandpa’s basement. We’re going for something different.”
© Alessandra Bulow
Tom Colicchio, Drew Nieporent, Daniel Boulud & Rick Smilow rocking out at D'Artagnan's 25th Anniversary Party.
, the owner of D'Artagnan
, is the head of the French chefs' mafia," said Anthony Bourdain
at the artisanal-foods company’s 25th anniversary party in New York City last week.
Daguin was the master of ceremonies at the fête, enthusiastically organizing a Bobbing for Prunes in Armagnac contest and leading a synchronized Paquito el Chocolatero dance
with about 100 of the mostly French-speaking guests
, many wearing red and white clothing—the colors of D'Artagnan.
Looking a little bit like a made man in a well-cut black suit, a red silk tie and a matching pocket square, Bourdain was just one of the superstar chefs at the event, where tables were piled high with the company's fantastic terrines, pâtés and French kisses (foie-gras-stuffed prunes) and the passed hors d'oeuvres included seared foie gras and delicate quail legs.Tom Colicchio
broke out his guitar and was joined onstage by Daniel Boulud
(wearing tight red pants—hot!), restaurateur Drew Nieporent and Rick Smilow, president of the Institute for Culinary Education. The group performed Bachman-Turner Overdrive's "Takin' Care of Business" and Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Green River.”
Over the past 25 years, Daguin has built a family of chefs and foodies who genuinely appreciate and love her and her company—a feeling that was palpable at the party.
"She's a mother to us all," said Bourdain.
© Rory Tischler
F&W Publisher Christina Grdovic Baltz & Chef Marcus Samuelsson at C-CAP 20th Anniversary Benefit
Before they headed to Miami for the South Beach Wine & Food Festival
last week, Food & Wine
's fantastic publisher Christina Grdovic Baltz presented chef Marcus Samuelsson
with an award at the 20th Anniversary Benefit of The Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP)
, a nonprofit organization that works with public schools across the country to prepare underserved high school students for college and career opportunities in the restaurant and hospitality industry.
"I began my involvement with C-CAP 15 years ago because I felt a responsibility to kids who wouldn't otherwise know about the culinary field,” said Samuelsson. "They're the next generation of chefs, and it's so important for them to have exposure to the restaurant world."
C-CAP students helped prepare food for the event alongside more than 30 New York City chefs, including Alfred Portale (one of Samuelsson's mentors and tennis partners) and Jason Hall from Gotham Bar & Grill
, who served an amazing cauliflower custard topped with sea urchin, trout roe and aged soy sauce, and F&W Best New Chef 2006 Christopher Lee
, who made the restaurant's signature sea scallop sandwich with seared foie gras, passion fruit and sugar snap peas.
© Danielle Falcone
Bouley's Japanese bites on imari porcelain.
Last night, star chef David Bouley turned his fabulous Tribeca test kitchen into a showroom for the latest interpretations of Imari porcelain, a style of porcelain made in the tiny town of Arita in Japan’s Saga prefecture. Young artists and designers like Tsuji Satoshi are making cool new designs inspired by traditional style. Bouley plans to use many of the pieces at his forthcoming Japanese restaurant. And of course, the dishes weren't left empty. Bouley, along with chefs Isao Yamada and Tadao Miakmi (Bouley Upstairs), Noriyuki Sugie and chefs from the Tsuji Culinary Institute of Japan prepared some ridiculously good dishes using wild Japanese ingredients like barafu, a leafy green that looks like it's covered in dew, with a salty taste and great crunch.
As Julia Moskin reports in this week’s New York Times Dining section, many yoga traditionalists are not pleased with all the eating and drinking now happening at yoga studios around the country. While austerity is at the core of many traditional yoga practices, personally I’m hungry after a 90-minute Bikram yoga session in a 110 degree room (even if it smells like stinky, sweaty feet).
Here, some fantastic recipes from my favorite chef-yogi (and an F&W Best New Chef 2009), Jeremy Fox from Napa Valley’s Ubuntu restaurant and yoga studio:
Carrot Macaroni and Cheese (pictured)
Lemony Quinoa Salad with Shaved Vegetables
Broccoli à la Catalan
One of these things is not like the others: sports hero, fashion icon, glitterati mainstay, culinary student.
David Beckham, one of the world’s most recognizable athletes, seems increasingly set on mastering all things gastronomic. Since launching his healthy food line from GO3 back in 2008, Beckham has shuttled between Major League Soccer’s Los Angeles Galaxy and AC Milan, and it seems his most recent spell in Milan has inspired Beckham to enroll in a 120-hour cooking class concentrating on the finer points of Italian cuisine (as Eater reported yesterday from The Daily Mirror). While Beckham already mastered fresh pasta, ragù and carbonara, he has stated that the ever-tricky risotto looms. To help him avoid embarrassment in the kitchen classroom, we suggest a recipe from a pro: a version of the classic Milanese Risotto from F&W's Grace Parisi.
© Patty’s Royal Dandie Miniature Pet Pigs
Even if they don’t win an award at the Golden Globes
this Sunday, January 17, nominees like Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts and George Clooney might go home with more than the usual swag: They can adopt a tiny Dandie Extreme
pig (pictured) in the GBK Gift Lounge. The micro pigs, which can weigh as little as 15 pounds and are said to be as intelligent and affectionate as dogs, are becoming the celebrity pet du jour
: Paris Hilton has one named Princess Pigelette
and Victoria and David Beckham have two, named Pinky and Perky
. After all, a gold-and-marble statuette can’t keep you warm at night, but a mini pet pig—that’s another story.
Throwing a Golden Globes Party? Here are some delicious starters to honor the nominees:
• French Hors d’Oeuvres: 10 excellent hors d’oeuvres
to honor Julie & Julia, like warm Camembert with wild mushroom fricassee
, pork rillettes
and a caramelized-onion-and-Gruyère tart
• Italian Antipasti: 10 delicious antipasti
to root for Nine, like sautéed cauliflower frittata with thyme
, red wine bagna cuda (the classic Piedmontese anchovy-and-olive-oil dip) with crudités, and super-crunchy grissini (Italian breadsticks)
• Spanish Tapas: 10 terrific tapas
to celebrate Broken Embraces, like open-face crab empanadas
, crispy chicken croquettes
and flatbreads with shrimp and romesco sauce
, a slightly smoky puree of roasted red peppers, garlic and almonds
© The Berkeley
Haute-cookies at the Berkeley hotel in London.
I’ll be blogging this week about discoveries from my recent eight-day trip to London. The city was buzzing with pop-up restaurant/design projects, ambitious new hotels and hip new British comfort food joints. One of my favorite finds was at the Berkeley hotel, which just introduced the fall/winter collection of its super-popular Prêt-à-Portea (the menu changes every six months to reflect the new fashion season). This haute-couture-inspired tea service features edible designs inspired by Christian Lacroix, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior. Adorable confections include a Roger Vivier chocolate boot cookie, a Mulberry "Bayswater" white-chocolate-and-coconut-truffle "it" bag and a cinnamon Burberry Prorsum trench-coat cookie with a caramel belt and buttons. All are served on Paul Smith china alongside a proper cup of English tea.
The restaurant at the Crown Inn.
Superhip Brit designer Ilse Crawford is constantly innovating. Her latest obsession is reinventing the idea of the coaching inn, which offered travelers in the mid-17th century a place to eat and sleep. Last year I stayed at her first such property, the Olde Belle, outside of London in Hurley. And I just spent the weekend at her second, the Crown Inn, about 40 minutes outside London in Amersham. Crawford has modernized the bed-and-breakfast, combining a cozy place to spend the night with an enticing, comfortable restaurant that's perfect for having a cocktail or a superfresh, farm-to-table dinner. Imagine if New York City's Spotted Pig gastropub added rooms upstairs—that's basically the Crown. It features incredible design juxtaposing the modern (flat-screen TVs and funky white-fur throws for the rocking chairs) and the historic (Room 12 has a section of hand-painted wall dating back to the 1500s), with smart touches like Aesop body soaps and Welsh wool blankets. Rosie Sykes and chef Mark Bristow are in charge of the food and make a satisfying breakfast spread for guests that includes homemade breads and sesame-hazelnut granola, chocolate muffins, eggs and hash. The chalkboard dinner menu changes daily, and some regulars convinced me to try the hearty beef-and-ale pie with a pint of local hard cider. I'm hoping Crawford brings the concept to the U.S. next.