Join Us At The NYC Wine And Food Festival!

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So what are you doing the weekend of the 18th? I can tell you that we’ll be at Food Network’s NYC Wine and Food Festival!

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Tons of foodie panels, classes and tastings are happening all over the city during this four day event.

Want to know how to pickle? Check out The Art of Pickling with McClure’s Pickles.

Love Gabrielle Hamilton’s memoir Blood, Bones and Butter? (Blogger’s Note: If you haven’t read viagra online switzerland it and you’re into food, you really should.) Then get tickets to Blood, Bones and Bubbly, in which she teams up with Wine Wise Guy Anthony Giglio for an afternoon pairing seminar showcasing Hamilton’s unique recipes and fun stories from her book.

Are you a fan of farmer’s markets? Head to a Greenmarket Brunch hosted by Geoffrey Zakarian. Meet the food industry’s favorite local farmers and learn first hand about their star products. Witness the transformation of field fresh goodies in the raw into culinary perfection. And more importantly, attendees get to eat the results.

Food Network celebrities such as Mario Batali, Robert Irvine, Ted “You have  been chopped!” Allen, and Anne Burrell, renowned chefs like David Bouley and David Chang and writers and editors like Melissa Clark (The New York Times) and Dana Cowin (Food and Wine) are all participating in the event.

And yeah, we can’t forget our own chef extraordinaire, Yoel Cruz! Chef Yoel will be participating in the Grand Tasting at Pier 94 on 55th St. and the West Side Highway on Sunday, October 20 from 12pm – 6pm serving–get this–duck confit on a wonton crisp with kumquat tamarind glaze.

Please join us on Sunday and say hello to Chef Yoel and the gang. We promise you won’t be disappointed. And in case you’re feeling like a glutton, 100% of the net proceeds will benefit the Food Bank for New York City.

Duck confit…food bank. It’s a winning combination, don’t you think?

 

 

 

Beer, Beer And More Beer!

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It’s October, people, and you know what that means…Oktoberfest! Beer! Cider! More beer! I asked North Square’s Beer Sommelier, Pamela Amatucci, for a few yummy autumnal suggestions and here’s what she came levitra buy up with:
Pamela describes Smuttynose Pumpkin (How much do you love that name?) as, “the beer drinkers pumpkin beer.” It’s made from fresh pumpkin, a bonus as apparently some pumpkin beers are made with some mystery “natural flavor”. With a combination of toasted malt, bitter hops and herbal flavor that balances the cinnamon, nutmeg and pumpkin, this beer finishes completely balanced.
Harpoon Octoberfest is a full-bodied American marzen (pale lager) backed with a toasted bready malt palate, hints of chocolate and a sweet fruitiness. Pamela finds Harpoon clean and drinkable and reports that it is commonly described as a top seasonal selection among other American Ocktoberfests.
And what about cider?
McKenise’s Seasonal Reserve Cider is a rich, mulled, spicy, hand-pressed cider. “Tastes like mom’s apple pie in a bottle,” Pamela says. The aroma smells of cinnamon, caramel and nutmeg—and the taste is light enough to drink all night long.
Come on over and test these out!

 

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Taste Of The Village

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On next Thursday (September 26th), North Square will be present and accounted for at the 11th Annual Taste of the Village Festival.

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The event is a fundraiser for the Washington Square Park; we want to maintain its renovated loveliness, right? Over 30 food and wine purveyors will be hawking their wares alongside us. 50 bucks gets you all the nibbles you can eat between 6 and 8 p.m.

Chef Yoel Cruz is outdoing himself this year with this offering: tuna tartare with a sesame cracker and heirloom gazpacho soup with basil oil. Yuh-mee.

Other vendors include Sushi purchase viagra canada Samba, Otto Enoteca Pizzeria, Burger Joint, Citarella and Curry Kitchen.

Tickets can purchased in person (cash or check only) at the Village Alliance office, 8 East 8th Street (btw 5th Ave./University Pl.) Monday through Friday, 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM. Or make your life easier and buy them online here.

See you there!

7 Things You Didn't Know About Tomatoes

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I’ve told you all about our rooftop garden. It’s in full bloom now and Chef Yoel Cruz is happily utilizing every last eggplant, leek and pepper. I love everything we’ve planted, but my absolute favorite is tomatoes. There’s nothing better this time of year than a plump, juicy ruby red tomato, right? Here’s a few facts that I dug up about my favorite vegetable.

1.There are over 10,000 varieties of these yummy red veggies.

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2. The tomato originated in South America, around 700 A.D. The first Americans to use tomatoes in their cooking were the Creoles in South Lousiana.

3.  The largest worldwide producer of tomatoes is China, followed by the U.S.A.,Turkey, India and Egypt.

4. You know that tomato is technically a fruit, but did you know that in 1893, the Supreme Court ruled that tomatoes are vegetables? In 1887, U.S. tariff laws that imposed a tax on vegetables–but not on fruits–causing the tomato’s status to buy generic cialis become a matter of legal importance.The court’s decision was made based on the popular definition that classifies vegetables by use, and while a tomato may biologically be a fruit, it’s served and eaten more like a vegetable.

5. Bathing in tomato juice can get rid of the smell of a skunk spray. I thought that that was an Old Wive’s Tale, but turns out it’s true. Hopefully, I’ll never have to test this, but if anyone does, please let me know.

6. Tomato sauce is an excellent way of cleaning anything made from copper, as the salt and acidity of tomato sauce helps remove copper oxides, leaving bright metal behind.

7. You should never, ever store tomatoes in the fridge. What goes in plump and juicy will come out mealy and with a duller-than-dull flavor. Keep them on the windowsill while they ripen.

You are now officially a tomato expert. You’re welcome.

 

 

Eating cooked tomatoes may act as a kind of internal sunscreen, according to researchers at the Universities of Manchester and Newcastle, England, by helping block UV rays. But eating tomatoes is only a supplement to using sunscreens, they caution, not a replacement. – See more at: http://www.hgtvgardens.com/tomatoes/fun-facts-about-tomatoes#sthash.UaAhjhY7.dpuf

 

7 Reasons Why I Love Restaurant Week

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1. I’m cheap.

2. I love to try new places.

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3. I love to eat at my favorite joints for a mere pittance. (See #1.)

4. You can take a pal (or two) out to celebrate whatever and you look like a star.

5. Three dinner courses for $38 bucks? I’m in.

6. Three lunch courses for $25? Yes, please.

7. Again, I’m cheap.

But not McDonald’s cheap. I loooove good food and am willing to spend if it’s worth it, but frankly I get cranky if I pay big bucks for a meal buy viagra canada and it doesn’t hold up. But I do the happy dance when I can devour a good one for less than the market price.

So what’s going on at North Square for the remainder of the promotion? I’ve explained before that Chef Yoel is going crazy and changing the menu several times a week.

And I’m looking forward to these treats: cold red pepper bisque, grilled shrimp and calamari salad, paella–you read that right–paella, the nectar of the gods, strip steak, tropical fruit gazpacho, crab rolls, seared branzino, plum and blueberry pecan cobbler and the hazelnut peach tart.

You get the message. Make your reservations here. We can’t wait to see you!

 

Check Out Our Garden!

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We’re thrilled to let you know that the hotel’s vegetable and herb garden is even bigger, badder and greener this year. So what’s on the menu? Collard greens, cabbage, lettuce, acorn and patty pan squash, eggplant, tomatoes and pumpkins are just a few of the offerings.

Jake’s Rooftop Garden, named after owner Judy Paul’s grandpa, came to be in an interesting fashion. Tommy Benedict, an urban landscaper and the guy in charge of the whole shebang, took me though the beginnings. (You know those beautiful flower arrangements in the restaurant? The ones that you could never, ever fathom doing yourself? That’s Tommy.)

Judy had always wanted a rooftop garden, and last year finally decided to do something about it. As the building is a little um, long in the tooth, she checked with an engineer to see if it the roof could actually carry the weight.

And so an ingenious idea was born. To avoid putting any direct pressure on the roof itself, a kind of suspended railroad was created around the perimeter and secured with iron. Crates and window boxes carrying the actual produce are perched on the contraption, raised about a foot up along the edge of the ceiling.

And there you have it…a rooftop garden that doesn’t actually touch the roof:

 

Tommy feels that vertical growing in containers as opposed to sideways ultimately produces a higher yield, as herbs and vegetables are continuously harvested and thus constantly replenish themselves. (Farmers with a vast acreage can usually only harvest once a year.) Another advantage to using crates is that individual boxes of veggies can be moved around so that each gets the proper amount of sun…micro-management at its best.

Last year, the garden yielded almost enough herbs to fuel the entire restaurant and bar. (Yes, we grow our own mint for our mojitos–don’t you?)  So this year, Chef Yoel Cruz presented Tommy with a detailed wish list of what he could use in the kitchen–and Tommy came through. Almost a dozen different types of peppers, three types of basil, leeks, chives, zucchini…you get the picture. Our herbs and vegetables are mostly sourced from local farmers and Tommy expects to keep the garden going through October, or at least until the first frost.

Jake’s is a true city garden. New Yorkers are geniuses in space utilization and the hotel is no exception. Tommy explained to me that pfizer viagra cheepest prices horticulture may be a science, but you still have to experiment and make it your own. He’s committed to looking at different ways to feed us and we’re equally committed to eating it up.

 

Feed A Mom This Sunday

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If your mom is more Clair Huxtable than Joan Crawford, you’ll probably want to toast her kindness with a giant bottle of champagne this weekend. Throw in a gut-busting meal on top of those cocktails and the woman who raised you will truly feel the love. (Honestly, if you feed me, I’ll pick up after you and do your laundry for the next year. Scouts honor.)

Chef Yoel has created a special brunch and a three course $42 prix-fixe dinner menu specially designed for mamas this Sunday.

Click on the links above to see all the offerings. I have to say that I’m intrigued by the evening selection of pan roasted elk with crispy shallot mashed potatoes, asparagus, with an aged balsamic and bacon reduction. (There’s nothing like a little game meat to show mom just how pfizer soft viagra much you love her.)

Click here to reserve a table for you and the main woman in your life.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful moms out there!!!

 

 

 

 

Cinqo de Mayo, Seis Margaritas

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Cinco de Mayo…a day for Mexican folks to display their ethnic pride and for people of all cultures to indulge in mariachi music, mouth-watering Mexican food and strong, tasty margaritas.

As legend would have it, the margarita was invented in 1941 in Ensenada, Mexico by a bartender named Don Carlos Orozco. Orozco was experimenting with mixing new drinks when a prestigious visitor arrived: Margarita Henkel, the daughter of a German ambassador. Don Carlos offered the drink to Margarita and named it after her for being the first person to taste it. So if you can believe Wikipedia (I know…I know…), the margarita was named after a German.

In any event, here are a few recipes for you to try out at home!

First, a classic margarita from the Epicurious website:

  • 2 ounces tequila made from 100 percent agave, preferably reposado or blanco
  • 1 ounce Cointreau
  • 1 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Salt for garnish

Combine tequila, Cointreau, and lime juice in cocktail shaker filled with ice. Moisten rim of Margarita or other cocktail glass with lime juice or water. Holding glass upside down, dip rim into salt. Shake and strain drink into glass and serve.

Here’s a frozen margarita courtesy of drinksmixer.com:

  • 2 tsp coarse salt
  • lime wedge
  • 3 oz white tequila
  • 1 oz triple sec
  • 2 oz lime juice
  • 1 cup crushed ice
Place salt in a saucer. Rub rim of a cocktail glass with lime wedge and dip glass into salt to coat rim thoroughly, reserve lime. Pour tequila, triple sec, lime juice, and crushed ice into a blender. Blend well at high speed. Pour into a cocktail glass.

Bobby Flay has a cool frozen watermelon margarita that serves eight:

  • 5 cups cubed watermelon, seeds removed
  • 1/2 cup simple syrup (equal amounts sugar and water, heated until sugar melts), cooled
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
  • 2 cups silver tequila
  • 4 ounces orange liqueur
  • 2 ounces melon liqueur
  • Watermelon wedges, for garnish

Place watermelon in a food processor and process until smooth. Pour the pureed watermelon into two empty ice cube trays and freeze until firm, at least four hours. Place martini glasses in the freezer to chill.

Place two cups of the watermelon ice cubes and the remaining ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into four glasses and repeat with the remaining ingredients. Garnish each glass with a watermelon wedge.

A low-cal version comes from Cooking Light magazine. (To be honest, it looks like it’s just a really small drink, but you can always have two and still feel good about yourself.)

  • 1 ounce premium or silver tequila
  • 1/2 ounce Cointreau or other orange-flavored liqueur
  • 1.5 oz. fresh-squeezed lime juice

Combine ingredients. Shake with 3/4 cup ice; garnish with lime.

And for folks who don’t drink alcohol, here’s a Virgin Margarita recipe for four from lovetoknow.com.

  • 1 6-ounce can frozen limeade concentrate, thawed
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 lime, cut into 4 equal size wedges
  • 4 cups ice cubes

Moisten the rim of the serving glasses with a little lime juice. Put the salt in a huge saucer or shallow pie pan. Invert each glass in the salt, and gently twist to coat the rim with salt. Invert each glass in the salt, and gently twist to coat the rim. Place the limeade concentrate, orange juice and ice cubes in a blender. Pour into glasses and be careful not to disturb the salt on the rims. Garnish the viagra soft tabs 100 mg drinks with lime wedges and serve.

And finally, if you love both mojitos and margaritas and are waffling over which one to have, try a Mojarita for four, courtesy of iVillage:

  • 20 fresh mint leaves, more for garnish
  • 8 oz. tequila
  • 2 oz. fresh lime juice
  • 2 oz. agave nectar
  • 4 oz. soda water to top
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges

In a cocktail shaker, add torn mint leaves, lime wedges, lime juice, and muddle together allowing the flavors to marry and the aromas to release. Add two cups crushed ice and tequila. Shake well. Pour evenly into four glasses, adding additional crushed ice on top and mixing well. Top with soda water. Garnish with mint sprigs.

But if you’re lazy, like me, come to the North Square lounge and have the bartender mix you up a strawberry basil margarita with jimador tequila, lime juice, strawberries and basil. Estaba delicioso!

Cheers!  And enjoy the weekend, everyone!

Dinner For Two

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Chef Yoel Cruz and consulting pastry chef John Cheng have revealed their Valentine’s Day prix-fixe menu. Feast your real viagra eyes and tummies buy cialis online on this:

For the first course, there is a choice of:

RAW OYSTER TRIO
malpeque, yaquina and wellfleet

MINI LOBSTER & CRAB CAKE
seaweed salad and thai coconut curry sauce

EGGPLANT ROLLATINI
ricotta & manchego cheese, orzo, roasted tomato & basil sauce

Next, you can select one of these:

ROASTED TOMATO SOUP
grilled shrimp, crispy potatoes

CORN CHOWDER
peppers, crab meat, cumin foam

KALE SALAD
hubbard squash, gala apples, manchego cheese, roasted pumpkin seeds, cider vinaigrette

RADICCHIO & BOSTON LETTUCE SALAD
roasted beets, goat cheese, honey spiced pecans, blue cheese dressing

TUNA TARTARE
avocado, ginger crudo vegetables, lemon-lime vinaigrette

PAN SEARED FOIE GRAS
roasted butternut squash, apple & celery salad, grand marnier sauce

Put down your fork for a minute before moving on to one of the following entrees:

FILET MIGNON AU POIVRE
grilled vidalia onion, steak cut fries, spicy mustard, bourbon au jus

ROASTED PEKIN DUCK BREAST
sautéed shiitake mushrooms, pea greens, soba noodles, kumquat & tamarind sauce

SEARED VENISON
swiss chard, herb späzle and roasted beet au jus

HERB CRUSTED RACK OF LAMB
brussels sprouts with bacon, potato leek galette, rosemary au jus

ROASTED LOBSTER
rice noodles, vegetables, thai curry, lemon grass broth

GRILLED MONKFISH
baby vegetables in saffron broth, red bliss potatoes, tomato aïoli

And, of course, you can’t forget dessert. There’s a choice of pumpkin cheesecake, key lime pie, mocha bread pudding, butterscotch creme brulee or a red velvet chocolate heart for two. (Personally, I would order the latter and pray to God that my partner was full, but that’s just me.)

Four courses for $55 per person…a seriously great deal on one of the biggest dining out nights of the year! Call 212-254-1200 now for your reservations…or click on the “Feed Me” button above.

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!