...more recent posts
I admire from afar the world of fine dining and hate to muck up the page with my petty, pedestrian miseries but today coming off the roof to avoid torential rain I went to hide and dine at the neighborhood TacoBell and a notice on the door is giving me three days, Aug 13, to deal with the shutting down for renovation of my favorite eatery, I daresay, my shack of sustenance. Is there no end to the hardship? Speaking of hardship I contemplated the life of crime this morning at 6:20 walking the isles of a Save a Center grocery store, having already purchased my heat n' serve lunch (crawfish fettucine), I curiously wandered to the liquor isle to spy the single malt and this particular store had them all behind glass and key, and no wonder, with probably forty varieties, including beau coup Glenns, and a bottle of 18 year-old Macallan's, priced at $71. I became dizzy with desire and saw myself doing a bold smash and grab routine, but instead proceeded calmly to the checkout and paid for my banana, two glazed donuts, bag of peanuts, and the aforementioned fettucine.
6 de 8 de 2000--Visrestaurant Lucius--very very visre!!--
best mussel's ever
so far so good in amsterdam
great exotic fruit markets. fresh fish dinner (i say too much butter, lkb was pleased).
sipping 1996 chambolle musigny premier cru by vogue on the house boat deck, watching the gay pride celebration and water boat parade.
wallse @ 344 west 11th st--super yummy--we ate every fish starter, some we asked for another right after finishing--i heard that the chef was so impressed that he came out to who we were, i missed that cause i was out in the other room bonding with the owner--the fish main's were even better--dessert were just ok but we didnt try enough--the meat dishes smelled and look good too and overall the dishes were light on the butter and very well flavored--worth every penny!!
Does this constitue a post? I sat next to Drew Barrymore last night (at El Teddy's.) She was drunk. Didn't look anything like her.</gossip>
if in need of a good glass of wine in brooklyn heights go to Tinto @ 60 henry st. lots of good wine by the glass!! food needs to move a notch or two up!! they need a sherry list asap!!
A big chemical company wants to sell you an "all natural" solution to clean the chemicals off of your produce. I think this is what they mean by "synergy".
Ancient Wine Artifacts on Display at New York Museum
Posted: Thursday, July 27, 2000
By Jacob Gaffney
The Jewish Museum, on Manhattan's Upper East Side, is offering a look at the role of wine in the ancient world. Opening July 30, "Drink and Be Merry: Wine and Beer in Ancient Times" gives visitors a chance to gain insight into winemaking and drinking in early civilizations.
"We wanted to take us into the new millennium with a glass of wine," said Michal Dayagi-Mendels, the curator of the exhibit, which originally opened last summer at Jerusalem's Israel Museum, where she works. "When I first started the exhibition, I knew only white wine, red wine, rosé. But the Talmud talks of 60 different types of wine; Pliny, the Roman historian, mentions 80 types; another writer mentioned 130 types; and so I have learned."
The collection of wine-related artifacts shows that wine served an integral and complicated role in the lives of ancient men and women. The exhibit traces wine from its first appearance, about 8,000 years ago in the mountains of what is now Iran, to iron viticultural tools made in the 6th century B.C.E. (before the Common Era), around the time of the prophet Isaiah, up to Israeli mosaics, from 600 C.E.
A rare find on display is a three-foot-long leather wine flask from the first century, which was used by Jewish rebels fighting Roman occupants. The soldiers would pour the wine from the flask into their drinking water. The alcohol would kill any harmful bacteria in the possibly contaminated water -- making the wine a true lifesaver.
Even one of the Dead Sea scrolls has been rolled out for display, as the ancient Hebrew text describes the proper way to use wine in religious ceremonies.
One would expect to find artifacts such as wineskins used by Jewish rebels and Hebrew scriptures at the Jewish Museum. But what about the guilded silver containers used by the Roman aristocracy or the pottery beer jugs with built-in filters that were placed in the tombs of affluent Egyptians?
"Normally we don't have a statue of Dionysus in the museum," said Susan Braunstein, curator of the Jewish Museum. "But we believe the ancient period is the formative period of Jewish history. This exhibit gives us an opportunity to expand. Obviously, the use of wine is part of that importance."
"Drink and Be Merry" will be shown at the Jewish Museum until Sept. 30. Admission is $8 for adults and $5.50 for students and senior citizens; children under 12 are admitted for free.
# # #
The Jewish Museum
1109 Fifth Ave. (entrance on 92nd Street)
Hours: Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, 11 a.m. to 5:45 p.m., Tuesday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., closed Friday and Saturday.
dave heres the post review of ducasse--New Ducasse Has No Class
July 26, 2000
160 Central Park South
AFTER two meals at Alain Ducasse, sifting the fine points of a good
tantrum, you start making a list. Exactly what is it about this $200-a-head,
chutzpah-snorting restaurant that makes you boil? Is it that:
* It's the most arrogantly launched eatery in the history of the
* Its $34 pasta appetizer would embarrass the Olive Garden?
* Its hilarious service rituals insult true French professionalism?
None of the above, I decided. What stinks most about this place is
that, like old Vegas high-roller "gourmet" rooms that substituted spectacle
substance, it denies money its meaning. Our money, that is, not theirs:
They even tried padding our bill.
"ADNY," as it's stamped with Trumpean pomposity on plates and
silverware, is less about "the world's greatest French chef" than about
sprawl. Globe-girdling Alain Ducasse means to tap Manhattan's cash
gusher while it lasts, and ADNY is the mediocre, often comical result.
True, Ducasse has dropped his "I am in all my restaurants at once"
act and begun showing his face with a vengeance on Central Park South. You
might even get to meet him in the kitchen, as we did when we spotted him
and conveyed our awe to the staff. But if you want a taste of the real
stroll down to the Waldorf's Peacock Alley, whose great chef, Laurent
Gras, actually cooked at Ducasse's three-star places in Paris and Monte
Easily America's most expensive restaurant, ADNY has shocked
foodies out of their summer somnelence. They're agog over its $160 prix fixe
and $2 million re-do of the old Les Celebrites. One of its snotty
shticks is to close on Saturday - a practice increasingly rare in Paris -
and serve lunch
only twice a week. It gloats over an alleged 2,700-name waiting list.
All this baloney has had the predictable effect on easily led minds
reduced to aspic by the whisper of Ducasse's name. One normally sane Web
proclaims ADNY "America's finest restaurant." Mr. Grimes warns us not to
expect a Times review soon as no tables are available until November. He
might try picking up the phone: The Post got two reservations last week
(one for lunch and one for dinner) just by calling and asking. [See story
ADNY is so full of goofy pageantry, you expect "wine goddesses" to
slide down poles and give neck rubs.
Take the Presentation of Knives. A waiter displays a case made of
rich-smelling leather. It holds a dozen cutting implements of cruel
many sizes and shapes.
The waiter: "It is the knives for the squab. You choose the one for
the bones. "
We choose our weapons. We nervously await a pigeon of prehistoric
dimensions. The squab proves anticlimactically tiny and boneless.
Or take the notorious "courtesy" stools for ladies' purses. These
serve mainly to bring out one's inner klutz, and I tripped over the damn
The gimmickry spills over, literally, into "baba au rhum," where
you choose the rum and see it poured, and the wine list whose seal you must
Disappointingly, they were out of the first bottle we selected.
ADNY lays on the laughs early and often. How can you not cackle
over menu language reminiscent of old Chinese restaurants' - pasta "with
bouillon," berries "with unctuous cake?" Giving you a choice of fancy
pens for check-signing is a side-splitter, when the dough isn't coming out
I drew the line, though, when they tried to charge us $108 for foie
gras served as the chef's-compliments course known as the amuse-bouche. The
puzzling explanation went: "Usually, it is salmon, but one of you
ordered salmon, so we had to do the foie gras, but we took it off." We also
table-ful of chefs de cuisine from the Four Seasons send back a bill
much too high. The explanation that time? "Wrong table." Whoops.
Despite replacing Les Celebrites' bad art with worse, and
lightening the colors, ADNY still looks like its predecessor: a high,
rectangular rug joint
broken up by two ponderous columns, with rosewood walls, circular
banquettes and miles of gold trim. It's one of the city's most luxurious
swell to spend three or four hours in.
The greeting is warm and no one is haughty. But inside, it's a
blizzard of impersonal buzzing, well-meaning but unfocused. ADNY desperately
ringmaster like Le Cirque's Sirio Maccioni or Le Perigord's Georges
Briquet to lay on the dazzle.
ADNY's floor crew could do with a master of any kind. No one seemed
in charge of the table. One fellow insisted, with Regis' "final answer"
that I choose dessert at the exact moment a second man was pouring me
wine to taste. At dinner, we had to ask three times for bread; the tough
mini-baguettes and salty brioches were a letdown after a 40-minute wait.
They're quick to whisk away your napkin when you leave the table,
but need reminding to replace it on your return. Asked to explain the
gynecologically suggestive (and useless) implement supplied with certain
dishes, the best the crew could offer was "asparagus tongs" - although there
no asparagus on the table.
"Is the Arizona beef a house specialty?" we wondered. "No." Our man
did not elaborate. What the hell is Arizona beef, which Ducasse calls
In fact, his comments on what he's up to in New York sound
patronizing. "What I discover on each of my visits to the United States
gives rise to
much more than simple curiosity," he has said. "In San Francisco, I
tasted the best preserved apricots of my life." Thanks, dude.
ADNY's chef of record is Didier Elena, Ducasse's "accomplice" of 12
years. (Boy, do these guys need a translator.) The place has been open a
month, but they don't seem to have the hang of the fiber optically smart
kitchen, anchored by a 3,000-pound Molteni stove and bristling with gizmos
built-in woks that can boil water in 7 seconds.
Lunch (the $160 tasting menu), enjoyable enough, fell shy of
brilliant. Dinner (a la carte) was bad enough to disappoint had it cost $300
much less $600 - and some dishes were outright debacles.
The menu is middle-of-the-road classic, with a nod to
"Mediterranean" influences and lip service to the Great American Bounty.
Don't expect a
cavalcade of the "luxury" ingredients foie gras, truffles and caviar.
In high summer, most everything had a wintery aspect; even
"tomatoes: a cocktail of tastes" looked dour on the plate. Some sauces were
harsh, others lacked their alleged themes and oversalting was rampant.
Two "signature" dishes, lifted from Ducasse's places in Paris and
Monte Carlo, were remarkably dull. Indifferent breading was no help to
veal sweetbreads in their own juice. Worse, spaghettini "al dente" ($34)
with olive oil and sauteed vegetables - a sticky lump in a small bowl - was
congealed as bad Chinese takeout, drenched in a puddle of "crushed black
truffles" oddly without taste.
Far better was "delicate velouté of sweet peas, their pods and
radish greens," poured at the table, with two breaded crab fingers. But $28
Santa Barbara spotted prawns "in a chaud-froid, citrus fondue"
($42) were plump, sweet and nicely aspic-glazed - but near-inedible citric
over the dish like a plague. So did shrill "peppered vinegars reduction"
encircling "wild" salmon ($62) that was both mealy and bland.
The best a la carte dish was seaweed-steamed halibut filet ($68), a
firm slab atop lovely green herb sauce and accessorized with "sea urchin
cappuccino" and Asian-scented greens.
The tasting menu at lunch, when there were empty tables, showed
signs of life. That tomato "cocktail" came with marvelous tomato sorbet that
reminds you it is, after all, a fruit.
Promiscuous laying-on of butter bailed out a blurry swirl of
farfalle with ham and vegetables. Filet of sole, in the shape of a tube,
might have been a
tube of butter, so drenched was the fish - but it afforded pleasure with
cranberry beans and delectable crawfish.
Best was the squab - a pristine sliver that was simplicity itself.
It was topped with "thighs in pastilla," an earthy game-and-spice mix in a
cigarette-shaped phyllo crust of Moroccan inspiration, and black
truffle-foie gras red wine reduction that, for once, delivered the goods.
Camembert was chilled enough to have been refrigerated. Pastry
director Frederic Robert's desserts ($22), like a warm glazed feuillantine
almond ice cream atop apricot compote, were winners. A trolley laid on
fun goodies like lollipops and cookies that took forever to be served.
Once during lunch, I remarked to my colleague on how late it was
"You can't rush mediocrity," he observed.
Maybe not, but they sure could discount it 40 percent. Thanks to
ADNY, everyone else can raise their entree prices $10 and boast, "See how
cheaper we are than Ducasse?"
i cant eat shrimp anymore each bite taste like turtle--remember that band ministry had a album "the mind is a terrible thing to taste"--i was thinking of heading back to my vegan ways when but this makes me want to get some folks together....
a review of a book called "the invention of the restaurant: paris and modern gastronomic culture".
7/22 the green market is singing--peas three ways: snap, normale, and greens...first of the organic corn....multi-cherry jubilee....organic fava....organic fresh garlic (picked yesterday!!), same in onion and shallot, squash, tomatoe...bought all i could carry now i,m going back for more!!!
hello from italy--Florence!!--we are off to Cammillo, where the speciality is pasta with shaved dried tuna roe!!!--we have had some great meals and the old bread salads (old bread soaked in various liquids than mixed with different veggies herbs...chilled!!!) are going to be a must to try back home!! viva italia!!
Jul 04, 2000
Celebrating the 4th of July or the day of the dog: I've never really associated myself with any of those national holidays—I mean, I wasn't there when Columbus discovered America, cheering as he set foot on our shores, or dining with the Pilgrims and Indians in Massachusetts on that first turkey with all those side dishes and triptophane problems on the third Thursday in November; Memorial Day; Labor Day; President's Day; Christmas (ok, I still see those guys occasionally on street corners in December and I remember sitting on Santa Claus's knee in some department store and getting my picutre taken and looking at it in my parents bedroom for the next 20, 30, 40 years and wondering what that guy really looked like behind the beard); New Year (I've been at least semi-conscious for that one every time it happens and also for the way it stays with you a while until you successfully make the transition to the new date). Why don't they just lump them all together and give everybody 10 days off: eat, remember, shop, labor, etc. etc? But the 4th of July, of course I wasn't there when they signed the paper, and there is no video of events. However, I was there the first time I ate a hot dog, and I've been there every time since. My anticipated excitement was rekindled yesterday with the announcement that employee meal at 71 Clinton would consist of the revered combination of hot dogs, french fries and ketchup (for some). After several hunter gatherer attempts by various staff members the requisite hot dog buns were procured. In this instance, amid great controversy amongst the various male members of the staff, the chef's choice of preparation prevailed and the dogs were boiled and served. (But without the ever-important celery salt, which is a key element to the enjoyment of the boiled dog, which the chef fondly remembers first having with his father in the famous Rhode Island style.) His father, not being present for staff meal returned to the restaurant to find a pile of naked dogs covered by cling-wrap on a plate in his wine storage area. Knowing that my beloved Rachael had not partaken of the staff meal, I proceeded to sculpt what we were both to agree was a divine dining experience: a little butter smeared on the rolls prior to toasting them a golden brown, the hot dogs themselves grilled with well done sweet, crispy bits and then combined with the rolls and some Dijon mustard resulted in smiles and moans of gustatory delight. Now, to the point of all this fluff I've been spouting: what to drink with the dog? At the end of the work night Rachael and I were again hungry, so, at her urging I repeated the earlier gastronomic experience, this time unexpectedly elevating our enjoyment with the accompaniement of a delicious dry 1998 Gewürztraminer (Estate Bottled) from Navarro and a sample of a 1999 white Crozes Hermitage from Alain Graillot (Rousanne and Marsanne grapes) from that notorious bon vivant "the Wheel." [posted by dew-dah]