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Seasonal Eats: Asparagus

Posted on May 12, 2014 in Seasonal Eats, Spring Eats

Even though ramp mania is still at its peak, we wanted to give another great, green spring veggie its due: asparagus. A perennial garden plant belonging to the lily family, asparagus is harvested in the spring when it is 6 to 8 inches tall. Asparagus have fleshy spears topped with bud-like, compact heads, with a sweet, buttery taste and a tender texture. And while the most common variety of asparagus is green in color, two other edible varieties are available…

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Seasonal Eats: Ramps

Posted on May 1, 2014 in Seasonal Eats, Spring Eats

Of all of the edible delicacies the spring season is known for — peas, asparagus, fiddlehead ferns, rhubarb, lamb and soft shell crab — ramps are undoubtedly the most lusted after. Sometimes referred to as a wild leek, the tender ramp, tasting like a cross between onions and garlic, is native to North America, with a burgundy-tinted bulb that resembles a scallion, and flat, broad, light green leaves…

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Spring Dishes on the Rise

Posted on Apr 22, 2014 in Best Of, Spring Eats

It’s no wonder most chefs will tell you that spring is their favorite time of the year. That’s because verdantly green produce, like Ramps, Peas, and Fiddlehead ferns are green delicacies, made even more appealing by the fact that their seasons last only a fleeting, few weeks. So you can bet we’re taking advantage of our favorite restaurants warm weather dishes, like Asparagus with Quail Eggs at Juni, Stinging Nettle Ravioli at Betony, Rhubarb Kataifi at Beautique and much, much more…

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Our Favorite Spring Lamb Dishes

Posted on Apr 15, 2014 in Best Of, Spring Eats

While rabbit is making a strong play for the protein du jour, there’s no meat as intrinsically associated with spring (especially during Easter) as lamb. And nowadays, it’s appearing on restaurant menus in a number of intriguing guises, so there’s no need to settle for the expected pair of chops or mint jelly-smeared loin. That’s why we’ve rounded up New York’s best new lamb dishes…

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An Edible Celebration of Cherry Blossom Season

Posted on Apr 10, 2014 in Spring Eats

One of the most glorious signs of spring is undoubtedly the blooming of the cherry blossoms. And some of New York’s best restaurants are celebrating with a host of fun food and drink specials, like 15 East, Brushstroke, Cherry and Boqueria. Which means that you should too…

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Our Favorite “In-Between-Season” Eats

Posted on Mar 26, 2014 in Best Of, Spring Eats, Winter Eats

It may officially be spring, but the weather doesn’t necessarily reflect that right off the bat. Take this weekend, when it was 60 degrees and sunny one day, and 40 degrees and windy the next. And restaurant menus are similarly in flux, with root vegetables and heavy sauces often appearing alongside bright, fresh asparagus and tender fava beans. That’s why we’ve rounded up some of our favorite in-between-season eats…

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Savoring Rhubarb Season

Posted on Jun 5, 2013 in Spring Eats

Besides serving as a tart counterpoint to sweet, spring strawberries in a seasonal pie, what the heck is rhubarb and what else can you do with it? Usually one of the first edible plants ready for harvest in mid to late spring, rhubarb has large, triangular leaves and crisp, celery-like stalks (fun fact: food stylists actually dye celery with red coloring when they need rhubarb in the off-season!) Owing to the number of anthocynins present, a pigment also found in cherries, raspberries and red cabbage, rhubarb can be crimson, speckled pink or light green. And although scarlet-stalked rhubarb is generally more appealing to the eye, color has no effect either way on flavor, texture or aroma.

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Seasonal Eats: Soft Shell Crabs

Posted on May 8, 2013 in Spring Eats

Most people think vegetables when they consider all of the culinary delights associated with the spring. But there’s an under-the-sea treat that’s equally delicious, with a season every bit as fleeting, as morel mushrooms, ramps and fiddlehead ferns. Soft-shell crab season is traditionally marked with the first full moon in May. At that time, the blue crab begins molting its shell, in order to accommodate summer growth.

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Seasonal Eats: Ramps

Posted on Apr 23, 2013 in Best Of, Spring Eats

We’re not exactly sure when ramp-mania started. But there’s no denying that in the last few years, the onset of spring has been officially marked by the appearance of ramps on restaurant menus. So what exactly is this elusive onion that’s taken the culinary world by storm? A perennial wild leek, the ramp has broad, edible green leaves and a tender stalk and bulb with a purplish tinge, similar to a scallion in taste and texture.

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Spring Dishes on the Rise

Posted on Apr 3, 2013 in Best Of, Spring Eats

As Sohui Kim, chef and owner of The Good Fork in Red Hook eloquently put it, “Spring is when I can stop pretending to be excited about cooking with root vegetables.” It’s still a bit early in the season (ramp mania has yet to hit its peak), but plenty of restaurants are already showcasing glimpses of spring’s bounty from the Greenmarket. We scouted out a vibrant Spring Pea Soup at Market Table, Spring Garlic Risotto at Craft, and Strawberries and Rhubarb sweetening Foie Gras at Prospect in Fort Greene…

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Best Lamb Dishes for Spring

Posted on Mar 28, 2013 in Best Of, Spring Eats

Chicken is by far America’s most popular protein and becoming trendier every day.  And, of course, from Bacon to Belly, nothing is hipper than Pork.  But with the Easter holiday upon us, and the weather just beginning to warm, the meat du jour is Lamb. There’s nothing more iconic than a Leg of Lamb as the centerpiece of an Easter table, or a surer sign of Spring than seeing juicy loins and chops appear on restaurants menus throughout the city.  The Lamb Dinner for Two at Dovetail is a particularly delicious homage to the season, along with the Sicilian Lamb Sugo at Elizabeth Falkner’s new pizza joint, Krescendo, and the Indian-inspired lamb chops at Junoon. Looking for other ways to get a taste of Lamb, both during the holiday season and beyond?  Here are the Lamb Dishes we’re loving this Spring…...

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Sexy Spring Cocktails

Posted on May 30, 2012 in Best Of, Spring Eats, Summer

We’ve been known to enjoy a cocktail (or three), and what better way to celebrate the warm weather than with a fresh from the garden libation?  The city’s hottest bars and restaurants around the city have swapped out their stiff winter warmers for lighter, brighter concoctions in honor of spring. With fresh ingredients, like mint, muddled strawberries and cucumbers, seasonal libations are high on our radar right now. Especially the ones at the newly minted Wythe Hotel in Williamsburg.  There, you can savor the waterfront views at The Ides, the rooftop bar, and sample a “Chihuahua,” a citrusy blend of fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice and tequila served in a highball glass with a salted rim. And there’s plenty more to enjoy all over town — from ABC Kitchen’s “Strawberry Royale,” an idyllic combination of fresh strawberry juice and sparkling rose, to...

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Valentine’s Day Dining

Posted on Feb 6, 2012 in Holiday Eats, Spring Eats

The holiday many love to hate is fast approaching.  If you’re single, Valentine’s Day can be depressing.   If you’re coupled, it can be a lot of pressure to buy roses at inflated prices or fancy chocolates.  And, of course, you have to pick the perfect restaurant with a pricey prix fixe menu, a romantic setting, and aphrodisiacs of the oyster and fig sorts.  Instead of giving into a “sucker’s night out” meal, we found a few great options we could actually get excited about. Valentine’s Day could be an excuse to sample sexy Austrian food at Edi & The Wolf or take a couple’s cooking class at DeGustibus.  Here’s a few of our favorite options… Millesime 92 Madison Ave btwn 28th & 29th St 212.889.7100 Millesime has a reputation for being one of the most romantic date spots in...

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Easter Dining Out

Posted on Apr 12, 2011 in Best Of, Holiday Eats, Spring Eats

Most people spend hours, even days, preparing a memorable Easter Sunday meal.  After all, Easter’s a serious religious and food holiday with traditions, like roasted lamb, ham, and hot-cross buns. Though it’s fun to host friends or feed your family, sometimes you just don’t feel like spending hours in the kitchen while everyone else is hunting for eggs.  It just happens to be a great holiday to bypass the kitchen and make a reservation.  Even if you don’t celebrate Easter, you’d be wise to seize the marvelous, Easter brunch options around the city. Manhattan’s got plenty of great brunch spots to start and they all up the ante for this holiday with everything from sweetbreads with baked eggs at Michael White’s Osteria Morini, wood fire-roasted lamb at Peasant, or poached eggs with fontina sausage buns and hollandaise at The...

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Your Guide To Valentine's Day

Posted on Jan 17, 2010 in Holiday Eats, Spring Eats

If you haven’t done so already, you might want to nail down your Valentine’s Day plans. ( Ladies, don’t depend on your significant other to plan ahead.)  Whether you’re looking for a romantic night out, a low key evening, or a cocktail and dessert, there are lots of creative options that won’t make either of you cringe.  Since Valentine’s Day falls on Sunday this year, you can celebrate your love over brunch. Prune (DIY Valentine’s Day) Address: 54 East 1st Street, nr. First Ave. Phone: (212) 677-6221 This East Village gem is known for its eclectic brunch menu, but Gabrielle Hamilton has outdone herself this year with a do-it-yourself themed meal.  Take your pick, guests can be transported to Istanbul with nibbles like fried whitebait, or you can head to CapeCod with grilled hard-shell lobster and anchovy butter.  Want...

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NYC's Best Spring Desserts

Posted on Apr 19, 2009 in Spring Eats

After a never-ending winter, finally there are signs of spring.  We’re ready to come out of hibernation and take a break from heavy desserts, the likes of bread pudding and creamy custards.  Pastry chefs are embracing light citrusy desserts like  lemon and lime as well as rhubarb and tropical fruits.  Baked359 Van Brunt St. (btwn. Dikeman & Sullivan Sts.)(718) 222-0345www.bakednyc.comAnyone would fall for this Red Hook bakery filled with inventive American desserts.  Someone at Baked has a lemon fetish — lemon-lime bars, lemon meringue pies, and mini-lemon bundt cakes.  And, of course, an excellent grasshopper bar: A brownie-like bar filled with crème de menthe center and coated in a chocolate mint ganache. Bespoke Chocolates6 Extra Pl. (at First St.)(212) For a teeny shop on an unmarked alley called Extra Place, Bespoke gets a lot of attention.  The biggest draw...

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Best of Easter Dining

Posted on Apr 3, 2009 in Best Of, Holiday Eats, Spring Eats

I love the signs of Easter — yellow, sugar-coated Peeps, hand-decorated eggs, and chocolate bunnies.  But the best part about Easter Sunday is the main course.  We scoured the city for the conventional and the out-of-the-ordinary to find out what some of New York’s best chefs and restaurants were planning for brunch, lunch and dinner on Sunday, April 12th.   Inside Park at St. Bart’s 109 E. 50th Street, at Park Ave. (212) 593-3333 I can’t think of a more ideal setting for Easter brunch than inside St. Bartholomew’s Church.  If Mimosas and Bloody Marys at church aren’t compelling enough, the chef’s resume will be.  Matthew Weingarten worked alongside Larry Forgione at An American Place, Katy Sparks at Quilty’s, and won a Blue Ribbon at the Institute for Culinary Education.  Brunch begins with a spring fruit ambrosia with...

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Sweetest Gifts for Valentine's Day

Posted on Jan 25, 2009 in Best Of, Spring Eats

As has become tradition, we’ve sorted through the tsunami of Valentine’s Day gifts and found a sweets for anyone and everyone.  If you’re bored of sending a box of chocolates, you might consider sending a box of burgers or cookies instead.  From body frosting for the bedroom to exotic truffles to classic chocolates… Roni-Sue’s ChocolatesEssex Street Market120 Essex St., at Delancey St.Stall #11/12212) 260-0421 www.roni-sue.comIf you thought you couldn’t stomach one more rose, you’ll happily submit to just one more.   Tucked into Essex Street Market is a gem of a shop that sells one white and one “red” rose chocolate truffle just for Valentine’s Day for $3 a piece.  Both fragrant chocolates are filled with ganache, rose petal jam, rose liqueur and powdered rose petals.  More importantly, you’re doing something good.  For every dozen rose truffles purchased, Roni-Sue’s...

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Valentine's Day on a Budget

Posted on Jan 19, 2009 in Best Of, Spring Eats

Just when the dust was starting to settle from New Year’s Eve, Valentine’s Day suddenly creeps in, in the not-so-distant future.  February 14th is less than a month away.  That means many prime tables and time slots have already been snatched up.  Not to fret.  New York’s got an endless selection of romantic and affordable restaurants with tables for two. Whether you’re looking to seal the deal, hopelessly romantic or something casual, there’s a restaurant that fits the part…“We just started dating”August359 Bleecker St. (btwn. 10th St. & Charles St.)(212) 929-8727www.augustny.comDinner at August is romantic any night of the week, never mind on Valentine’s Day.    It’s also a great spot for “new relationships” or the Valentine-phobic because it’s the kind of place that doesn’t look like you’re trying too hard.   Ooh, then there’s the wood oven factor in...

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Chic Easter Brunch Eats

Posted on Mar 16, 2008 in Best Of, Holiday Eats, Spring Eats

Abboccato 136 W 55th St., btwn 6th & 7th Aves. New York 10019 (212) 265-4000 This elegant midtown Italian offers a $65, 5-course Easter menu with Tuscan bread soup, followed by ricotta dumplings in a licorice herb sauce.  For the main course, lamb chops come encrusted with porcini mushrooms and served with bone marrow flan. For $95, a wine pairing for each course is also made available for the occasion. Little Dishes 434 7th Ave., btwn 14th & 15th Sts. Brooklyn 11215 (718) 369-3144 If the weather cooperates, you can celebrate Easter in the back garden of this quaint Brooklyn restaurant.  Brunch features biscuits with rose jamm, pork butt served with cheddar grits and scrambled eggs, or the English Ploughman’s plate.  A Bellini or Bloody Mary should pair nicely with this hearty menu. Aureole 34 East 61st...

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