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Dan’s Taste of Summer, Hamptons, NY

Dan's Taste of Summer annual food & wine festival takes in the Hamptons beginning on Friday July 17th with GrillHampton, a competition pitting 8 NYC chefs vs 8 Hamptons chefs in the ultimate grill off. Located at Sayre Park, 156 Snake Hollow Road, Bridgehampton. Tickets available for $125 (inclusive of all food & beverage). Saturday July 18th is the fifth annual Taste of Two Forks, the biggest celebration of East End restaurants bringing together more than 40 spots under one roof, hosted by The Chew's Michael Symon and Hamptonite Katie Lee (also co-host of Food Network's The Kitchen). Also located at Sayre Park, with tickets from $170 for general admission, [...]

By | July 10th, 2015|Rambling, USA Restaurants|0 Comments

2015 Oxnard Salsa Festival Celebrates Everything Salsa!

Get ready to spice things up during the 22nd Annual Oxnard Salsa Festival, one of Oxnard’s signature events. The festival celebrates salsa food, music and dance on July 25-26, 2015 at Plaza Park, Fifth and “B” Streets, in historic downtown Oxnard. Presented by the Oxnard Downtowners, the annual event features spicy food and fiery, top entertainment, attracting an estimated 45,000 salsa lovers to the City of Oxnard for the two-day action packed celebration. Event highlights include Main Stage entertainment with Salsa and Latin Jazz bands; the Salsa Tasting Tent, featuring over 75 different salsas; an eclectic vendor marketplace; international foods; Kids Korner attractions; chef demonstrations; a salsa recipe contest and [...]

By | June 18th, 2015|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

New Taste of the Upper West Side Begins May 27

The 2015 New Taste of the Upper West Side kicks off May 27 with an exciting lineup of new and returning restaurants, world-class chefs and celebrity hosts for an unforgettable three-night culinary celebration. The annual event donates all net proceeds to the local community. The festivities begin with Soirée in the Park on Wednesday, May 27th 7:30 – 9:30 pm (Rain Date: Thursday, May 28th) , an outdoor cocktail event at Theodore Roosevelt Park that celebrates and raises funds for New York City’s beautiful Theodore Roosevelt Park, surrounding the American Museum of Natural History. Guests will enjoy live chamber music under the stars with champagne and hors d’oeuvres provided by [...]

By | May 7th, 2015|NYC Restaurant Reviews|0 Comments

Practice Makes Perfect Spring Fling

Practice Makes Perfect Spring Fling will be held May 6, at Midtown Loft & Terrace (267 Fifth Avenue, New York City) from 7-10 pm. The event will have dancing, food, an open bar and an auction that includes Yankees tickets, a 2-night stay at the Las Vegas Cosmopolitan  Delta Voucher, Knicks tickets and a private dinner provided by Celebrity Chef Gabe Kennedy, winner of ABC’s The Taste. Guests will enjoy beverages from Gunhill Brewery, Banfi Winery, Lagunitas Brewery, and food from Kitchen Provance, Shake Shack, and Joanne’s Restaurant. A 100% of the proceeds go to Practice Makes Perfect to allow them to provide summer educational programming in low-income neighborhoods. Practice [...]

By | April 22nd, 2015|Rambling, xyz misc|0 Comments

Annual Iron Chef Elm City, New Haven

The eighth Iron Chef Elm City will be held  Sunday, April 26 11:45 am a the Omni New Haven Hotel, 155 Temple Street.  The competition is a battle between three chefs, requiring them to demonstrate their culinary prowess, while testing their skills against each other, Each chef must create a scrumptious appetizer, entrée and a dessert using the “secret ingredient." which is revealed at the start of the competition. This year's competition feature chef Carlos Cassar of Copper Beech Inn, Ian Frew of Yale-New Haven Hospital and Todd Ruiz of Omni New Haven Hotel Enjoy food samplings from competing chef's restaurants and CT food manufacturers before and during the competition. [...]

By | April 20th, 2015|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

Community Plates Food for All

Community Plates, the technology-fueled, direct-transfer food rescue organization dedicated to ending food insecurity in America, presents their signature fundraiser, “Food for All” on Thursday, May 7, 2015 from 6 to 9 p, at  The Loading Dock, 375 Fairfield Avenue, Stamford. This is an event features Fairfield County’s newest restaurants and artisans, in addition craft cocktail bars spearheaded by creative mixologists. The Dessert Café will feature sweet treats and libations. Tickets are $75. To purchase tickets ($75) and find more information click here.  

By | April 19th, 2015|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

Harlem EatUp! Festival 2015

Harlem EatUp! is a new festival celebrating the food, culture and spirit of Harlem on Thursday May 14th through Sunday May 17th, representing the renewed spirit of the area while paying homage to its roots. A variety of events will be held throughout the weekend featuring nationally and locally renowned artists from the culinary, fine arts and performing arts worlds. As part of its mission and dedication to Harlem, net proceeds from ticket sales will benefit Citymeals-on-Wheels and Harlem Park to Park. On Friday, “Dine In Harlem” will pair Harlem chefs and restaurants (including The Cecil, Streetbird, Jin Ramen, Vinatería) with national chefs who have ties to Harlem (including Carla [...]

By | April 11th, 2015|Other happenings|0 Comments

Bruno DiFabio Opens Amore Cucina & Bar, Stamford, CT

Numerous awards, 11 restaurants and several Food Network gigs later, Bruno DiFabio opened Amore Cucina & Bar, the second oldest restaurant in Stamford (921 Hope Street). The six-time World Pizza Champion, restaurateur, and Food Network judge came home to the neighborhood where he made his first pizza dough. Amore Cucina & Bar offers classic Italian fare to pay homage to its predecessors. The restaurant features Bruno’s popular Pizza Romana, a square pie that uses the “Poolish” dough method of a 72-hour fermentation process that's cooked in a gas-fired brick floor oven. Varieties include the award-winning West Side (spicy salami, green olives, tomato, mozzarella and passata). The wood-fired oven offers the [...]

By | February 20th, 2015|USA Restaurants, xyz misc|0 Comments

Carnevale at Tommaso’s, Bay Ridge, Brookyn

The celebration of Carnevale at Tommaso’s (1464 86th Street) in Brooklyn continues it's 42nd year of tradition. The festival celebration — from Friday, February 6th through Fat Tuesday February 17 —  features a  food, wine and music from a troupe of classically trained singers, who perform Italian arias, folk songs and Broadway standards. The feast begins with a parade of 15 hot and cold antipasti — many prepared only for Carnevale — and continues with a choice of pasta and entrée, followed by coffee and dessert. The fee is $45 to $60, depending upon the day. For information visit their website or call for reservations call 718-236-9883. - Guest submission [...]

By | January 22nd, 2015|Rambling, xyz misc|0 Comments

Banana Festival, Port of Hueneme, CA

Go Bananas’ on the scenic grounds of the Port of Hueneme (105 East Port Hueneme Road) during the Banana Festival, Saturday, September 27, 2014 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The free festival provides a fun-filled day to learn about the journey of the banana and the interworking of the Port. Festival highlights include delicious food and banana treats, live music, interactive displays, recipe contests, arts & crafts, kid’s activities, port tours and more. Vendors offer authentic tacos,  savory barbecue, Thai noodles, local brews and special banana treats including banana splits, banana smoothies and chocolate dipped bananas. Local bands will provide entertainment. Get a glimpse into how the Port works [...]

By | September 14th, 2014|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

NYC Restaurant Grading System

The New York City restaurant grading system implemented in 2010 is working. Many diners won't enter a restaurant  if there's a "B" or "Grade Pending" posted in the window. In fact, I — like 88% of New Yorkers — consider the grade before booking my res. I check with the department of heath online or use the ABCEats app. Click here to find a restaurant's letter grade and to learn what the grades actually indicate. Did you know that: New Yorkers eat at restaurants nearly a billion times each year 6,000 New Yorkers are hospitalized and 20,000 visit emergency room each year because of foodborne illnesses 2,700 residents of NYC [...]

By | September 13th, 2014|NYC Restaurant Reviews|0 Comments

Hudson Valley Wine and Food Festival

Hudson Valley Wine and Food Festival opens its gates at the Dutchess County Fairgrounds in Rhinebeck (NY) September 6 and 7 from 11 am to 5 pm for those eager to taste, test and learn about award winning wines, state-of-the-art distilleries and New York State’s food producers. Wineries, distilleries, craft breweries and food artisans will present their wares for other to enjoy wine tasting and food sampling as well as the demonstrations by well-known chefs. The celebratory atmosphere is enhanced by live music and the anticipation surrounding the judging of the Hudson Valley Wine & Spirits Competition. Founded 13 years ago by Hudson Valley-based Wineracks.com, the Hudson Valley Wine and Food [...]

By | September 1st, 2014|Other happenings|0 Comments

Bourbon Women “Sip-osium,” French Lick, Indiana

Bourbon Women will hold its first  “sip-osium,” a weekend of bourbon enjoyment and education, at the French Lick Resort in French Lick, Indiana, Friday August  22 through Saturday August 23, 2014 The two-day conference includes daily cocktail receptions and a bourbon dinner Saturday evening. The cost is $175 for members; $225  for non-members that includes a one-year Bourbon Women membership. Saturday only tickets are $150 for members, $200 for non. For more information and to register, click here. Attendees of the "sip-osium”must be at least 21 years old. Bourbon Women is a member-based organization founded in 2011 to promote and preserve the heritage of bourbon through educational, networking and charitable [...]

By | July 23rd, 2014|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

La Compagnie des Vins Surnaturels, Soho

The Parisian wine bar — La Compagnie des Vins Surnaturels — recently opened in New York City at 249 Centre Street. It features nearly 600 wines from around the world, with several offered via enomatic machine, and dozens of others available by the glass. Sommelier Fabien Suquet (formerly of the three Michelin Star-awarded Auberge Du Vieux Puits) has compiled a wine list from his favorite producers around the world. Nearly 70 percent of the list is French with venerable bottles from Bordeaux, Burgundy, and Chablis. There's also wines from small growers from Lebanon, Israel, Greece, Hungary, and Brazil. A menu of small plates from chefs Armand Arnal (of the Michelin [...]

By | June 28th, 2014|NYC Restaurant Reviews|0 Comments

2014 Oxnard Salsa Festival

Get ready to spice things up during the 21st Annual Oxnard Salsa Festival July 26 -27, 2014 at Plaza Park, Fifth and “B” Streets, in historic downtown Oxnard. The annual festival, which is presented by the Oxnard Downtowners, celebrates spicy salsa food, top notch music and dance, attracting an estimated 45,000 salsa lovers to the City of Oxnard for the two-day action packed celebration. Event highlights include Main Stage entertainment with Salsa and Latin Jazz bands; the Salsa Tasting Tent, featuring over 50 different salsas; an eclectic vendor marketplace; international foods; Kids Korner attractions; a salsa recipe contest and more. Event admission and parking are free. For Festival information, call [...]

By | June 2nd, 2014|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

New Taste of the Upper West Side in May

The 2014 New Taste of the Upper West Side  begins in Theodore Roosevelt Park on Tuesday, May 27th (with a rain date on Thursday, May 29th) at 7 pm with a cocktail event under the stars to celebrate and raise funds for New York City’s Theodore Roosevelt Park ($150/person) Travel Channel’s Adam Richman and  Food Network star and Iron Chef Alex Guarnaschelli (Butter Restaurant) will host Friday, May 30th's Comfort Classic from 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm, at the Grand White Tent on Columbus Avenue between West 76th and 77th Streets. The duo will oversee 40 restaurants from the Upper West Side showcasing their comfort dishes and competing to win [...]

By | April 17th, 2014|Rambling, xyz misc|0 Comments

A Taste of Excellence, Time Warner Center, NYC

Attend the  epicurean event on Thursday, April 24th, 2014 beginning at 6:30 pm on the second floor of the Time Warner Center, NYC. The Restaurant and Bar Collection at Time Warner Center offers an evening of fine dining, wine and entertainment. Enjoy canapés served by Union Square Events and sip specially crafted cocktails from Center Bar and Stone Rose Lounge during an open-bar cocktail hour. Dine on dishes from A Voce, Landmarc, Porter House New York and Masa. End the evening on a sweet note with desserts and cordials, accompanied by live jazz from Jazz at Lincoln Center. To purchase tickets ($95/person), click here.  

By | April 16th, 2014|Rambling, xyz misc|0 Comments

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Fund Raiser, April 25

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s (LLS) Connecticut Chapter will host Hops & Grapes, Toasts & Tastes at Chelsea Piers, Stamford, (CT) on Friday, April 25th from 7:30 to 10:30pm. Local restaurants, and distributors will showcase a selection of foods, wines and beers. LLS hopes to raise over $50,000 during this fun-filled evening. The evening’s festivities will include a silent and live auction and raffle. To this date, Hops & Grapes vendors include: Back East Brewing Company, Bar Russo, Bar Sugo, Beverage Boss, Cabot Creamery Cooperative, Cakey Kathy, Capriccio Café, Casa Villa, Chocolations, Colony Grill, Dash N Drizzle, DiMare Pastry Shop, Farmboys Smokin’ BBQ, J’amie ҫa Cake c/o Bar Sugo, Little [...]

By | April 11th, 2014|USA Travel, xyz misc|0 Comments

Bleecker Kitchen & Co. Opens, NYC

Bleecker Kitchen & Co. recently opened in Greenwich Village (643 Broadway, New York City), in the space formerly occupied by the Corner Shop Café. Veteran mixologists Tim Cooper (GoldBar) and Justin Noel (1534) feature  drinks that emphasize American flavors and ingredients including an Apple Walnut (American brandy, apple cider, lemon juice, cinnamon, grade “b” maple and black walnut bitters, $13) and Concord Mule (vodka, Meyer lemon juice, concord grape, ginger, thyme and club soda, $13). Executive Chef Steven Ferdinand— with  culinary experience at Aquavit, Le Zoo and Sugar and Plumm — offers a seasonally inspired American menu featuring small (rabbit confit with arugula, carrots, green beans, egg and orange-cider vinaigrette, [...]

By | March 17th, 2014|NYC Restaurant Reviews|0 Comments

Tuscany Wine Dinner at Felidia with Banfi Wines

Lidia Bastianich's flagship restaurant Felidia (243 East 58th Street) will host “A Taste of Tuscany with Banfi Wines," a special 5-course dinner and wine pairing on March 26th at 6:30pm, for $205 per person, plus tax and gratuity. Cristina Mariani-May — proprietor of the internationally renowned Castello Banfi vineyard estate in Montalcino, Tuscany and co-CEO of Banfi Vintners — will lead dinner attendees through a paired tasting of the her family's wines, including the Banfi crown jewel, Summus, and the critically acclaimed flagship, Brunello di Montalcino. Felidia executive chef Fortunato Nicotra will prepare the following courses for the dinner to be accompanied by these wines: Pappa al Pomodoro, Scampi Dorati, Micro [...]

By | March 15th, 2014|USA Restaurants, xyz misc|1 Comment

‘Dare to Pair’ Spirits Tasting Dinner Series, NYC

Atrio Wine Bar and Restaurant (102 North End Ave, Manhattan, NY 10282) is hosting a spirit tasting dinners, 'Dare to Pair.' The series focuses on a unique spirit each dinner. Still to come are the Hudson Whiskey (March 19), and Remy Martin (April 24). Executive Chef Antonio Cardoso will create a spirit-infused menu to compliment the cocktails served, while brand ambassadors will educate guests on their respective spirits. The fee is $110 for each dinner, held from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM. For reservations, call 646-769-4250 or email ATRIO.restaurant@conradhotels.com. For more info, click here. - guest contributor

By | March 11th, 2014|USA Restaurants, xyz misc|0 Comments

Pillsbury Bake-Off Now Accepting Entries

The Pillsbury Bake-Off Contest is now open, calling home cooks to compete for the $1 million Grand Prize. The finals will be November 3, 2014, at the Omni Nashville Hotel in Nashville, Tenn. What’s new? For the first time, America’s vote will be combined with the judges’ decisions to determine the Grand Prize Winner. Additionally, Pillsbury expanded the ingredient list to include  a Gluten Free Award. The Bake-Off now features four recipe categories with separate two entry periods. The first entry period includes the Simply Sweet Treats and Savory Snacks & Sides categories and is open for entries from now until March 27 (11:59 a.m. CDT), 2014. The second contest [...]

By | March 9th, 2014|USA, xyz misc|0 Comments

Liberty Prime: A Female-Friendly Steakhouse in Jersey City

Liberty Prime Steakhouse, a new kind of steakhouse arrived in Jersey City, within walking distance from the Grove Street & Exchange Place PATH station and just minutes from Hoboken and New York City. Restaurant owner George Makrogiannis always had a vision of bringing his own steakhouse to Jersey City. He joined forces Moran's restaurant in Manhattan and the Davenport group to launch Liberty Prime — 111 Montgomery Street, Jersey City — making his dream a reality. Like every great steakhouse, Liberty Prime makes quality meat its priority, but unlike every other steakhouse, they also pride themselves on their female friendly focus. Liberty Prime diverges from the traditional steakhouse that focus [...]

By | November 25th, 2013|NYC Restaurant Reviews|0 Comments

Fame Opened in Wicker Park, Chicago

Fame is an art-centric bar ( 2015 W. Division at Damen, Chicago) brings nationally acclaimed artists’ work to Wicker Park. The nightlife destination presents craft cocktails and innovative bar food in a space designed by interior designer, Antonio Ballatore. On the food scene, Fame  introduces Chef Sam Demarco’s modern and casual American cuisine. With more than 30 years of experience, Chef SammyD brings his fun culinary twists to the Windy City. His sharable plates provide unique twists on traditionally casual dishes, including: Tuna "Nachos" featuring pokey style diced tuna, plantain chips, roast pineapple salsa and sriracha mayo FBBBLT (Fame's Bao Bun BLT) Greek Gyro - griddled mini bao bun, lamb [...]

By | November 21st, 2013|USA Restaurants, xyz misc|0 Comments

Genji Sushi Offers a Solution to Holiday Food Indulgence

Genji Sushi is embracing the power of quinoa by offering a signature blend of red quinoa and brown rice in lieu of white rice at their sushi bars locations inside Whole Foods nationwide. Genji chefs are offering this blend on a variety of rolls, but any roll can be custom made to order with the new red quinoa and brown rice blend,  giving customers a more nutritious option as the holiday season commences. Genji’s Corporate Executive Chef Takao Iinuma — protégé of Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto —  developed the recipe specifically targeting customers who are looking white rice sushi alternatives. Based on an average roll, the new mixture has more protein, [...]

By | November 18th, 2013|USA, xyz misc|0 Comments