Johnny Iuzzini, the much lauded and tattooed sultan of sweet currently in residence at Jean-Georges, has just launched JohnnyIuzzini.com. Highly stylized and chock full of digital goodies like photos (strawberries at the green market and cakes!), video reel (sweet dreams sound track bien-sur) and calendar of events (note Tailor opening on the 30th and JI's birthday the 31st) it's worth stopping by for a bite.
I went to friends and family at BLT Market the other night. (F&F is
the industry term for test-run before a restaurant opens
to the public.) Occasionally when I meet people for the first time they ask "you're married to Laurent?" Yes. And then they say "I just went to BLT Steak and loved it. All his restaurants are great." Yes. I love BLT Steak too, but that is not my Laurent, otherwise it would be called BLG. The T is for LaurentTourondel.
I first met Laurent [Tourondel] back in 1994. He was chef de cuisine at CT , Claude Troisgros's restaurant. I was working at D'Artagnan. We spoke daily when he would call in to order foie gras, squab, and the like. Ironically, BLT Prime now occupies the CT space on East 22nd Street.
He opened Cello in 1999, which had a fast and fabulous run as one of the city's top tables. It was near-perfect seafood served in an elegant townhouse. Incidentally, the building on East 77th street was recently purchased and is now being used simply as a residence by the owner.
My dinner date and I were discussing our memories of Cello. I recalled the orange flower water donut holes that were served warm on a square porcelain plate at the end of the meal. Almost on cue, our waiter delivered a plate of two orange beignets filled with marmalade. Not exactly the same, but a sibling of the Cello donut and just as good.
That is perhaps the best way to describe BLT Market. It is neither BLT Steak nor BLT Fish. It is something different, but still has the feeling of the BLT family. The menu is a blend of Italian, American and French, all the food Laurent [Tourondel] likes to cook. Yes. I like BLT Market too.
Sample sale shopping in New York can be a full-contact endurance sport. One needs to be focused, to unearth the gems that will nicely integrate into you wardrobe and resist the items that while cheap are still a bad idea. A small amount of aggression is good to get your hands on said gems before the shopper next to you. Lastly, immodesty and a willingness to try clothes on in the aisle or the make shift dressing room, in full view of staff and shoppers, is mandatory. It is not a bargain if it doesn't fit. That said, a swimsuit sample sale is in a class by itself.
I stopped by the Malia Mills sample sale yesterday and if you're feeling you A-game, it's worth a visit. There are a myriad of styles, colors and sizes. Tops and bottoms are sold separately so you can mix-n-match you perfect maillot. A suit regularly priced at $260 can be had for a c-note. How many bathing suits does a girl need? I'd say somewhere in the ballpark of four or five.
August 15 & 16, 10am - 7pm 263 W. 38th Street, 16th Floor Cash & Credit Cards
Back in 2005, when chef Dean Fearing announced he was the leaving the Mansion on Turtle Creek in Dallas, it was a big surprise. He'd been there for 21 years. The deal he could not refuse was with Ritz-Carlton. The new hotel (the first new RC to open in the US in the past four years) and Fearing's Restaurant open tomorrow. Full press release after the jump.
Laurent Tournondel's long awaitedBLT Market opens Thursday in the Ritz-Carlton on Central Park South. Note it is dinner only with a 10% discount (indicating preview versus full opening) until September 10. Full press release after the jump.
I know a few people tuned in to last night's episode of Top Chef. Did you notice Ted Allen was wearing a Spotted Pig t-shirt under his blazer? Nice shout out to chef April Bloomfield and le grand fromage Ken Friedman, and very appropriate for a late-night challenge. And who doesn't love The Pig? Get you own t-shirt here.
The summer hiatus is over for the cast and crew of Top Chef. Even though you've been watching them sweat it down in Miami, they have in fact been on a break. Which explains why Tre Wilcox was recently in New York City. He spent a week trailing (industry-speak for a working visit to a kitchen) and eating in some of Gotham's top (three and four star) restaurants. His working vacation is perhaps one of the best uses of cheftestant celebrity we've seen so far.
This week everyone is gathering on the mountain top in Aspen to film this season's semi-final. An appropriate locale considering Aspen's the home of the Food & Wine Classic which is part of the big prize for the winner.
I wonder if the high altitude and depleted oxygen will have an affect on the competition? Not just the lightheadedness, but the cooler boiling water. To wit, under basic sea-level conditions water boils at 212 degrees Fahrenheit. In the decreased pressure of 10,000 feet above sea-level it boils around 185 degrees. Much cooler, requiring longer cooking time for the same results. Likewise, adjustments need to be made for baking. A little tip, just in case anyone is reading.