Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Bits and Morsels goes green

Geisha -- black truffle tuna with crispy sesame nori.

Last weekend I had a lovely Brunch at Recipe,
where it was their first weekend doing brunch. Recipe is a tiny sliver of a restaurant located at 452 Amsterdam Avenue. The restaurant has only 26 seats and when word gets out, they will all be filled, fast. This special neighborhood restaurant serves rustic American cuisine, using mostly seasonal and local ingredients.

My brunch date, Mr. Bold.
The food has a real homemade quality to it — not too fussy. If you are in the area around lunchtime during the week, they have an $11.95 special where you can get an appetizer and an entrée.

The vibe (yes, it's a bit early to report on the vibe) at Recipe is low key and relaxed. And the service was genuine — which is rarely the case in restaurant world. I ordered skim milk for my coffee, which they didn't have, so they offered to run out and grab some from the corner store. A gesture I've yet to receive elsewhere.

Some of the staple menu items: roasted beets with goat cheese, grilled steaks, and a softshell crab BLT. My brunch date this week was my blackberry, Mr. Bold. Not too long ago, when people dined alone they would either people watch or bring a book. Now everywhere I look, I see people dining alone, glued to their blackberries. And not just in casual cafes; but in fine dining establishments as well.
Recipe to stay. Recipe to go.
452 Amsterdam Avenue
Clockwise from top left: Inside Recipe; Iced coffee; Recipe's bottled tap water; Poached eggs with crispy prosciutto asparagus and bearnaise; Roasted vegetable omelet.
Pork loin sandwich. Beet and goat cheese salad.
Last Wednesday June 3, was the Taste of Summer to benefit the Central Park Conservancy. The event was held in a tent at the Band shell in Central Park. The tasting event included over 40 restaurants including The Plaza, Geisha, Orsay, Serafina, Redeye Grill and Quality Meats to name a few. The truffled tuna at the Geisha Table was delicious and one of my favorite bites of the night. I utilize the park often and the Central Park Conservancy is an important organization. These tastings are always a winning situation because you can sample food from so many restaurants and all to benefit a great cause. It’s a great way to explore many restaurants without committing to a full meal. [Central Park Conservancy]
En route to Taste of Summer.
Clockwise from top left: Macaroni and cheese from the Plaza; Redeye Grill -- Blue Island Oyster ceviche; BLT Market -- Hamachi with a chilli-soy dressing, cucumber and avocado puree; A cup of Mac ready to go.
Halibut Ceviche from Pampano restaurant. Bloody Mary Oysters.
Clockwise from above: Bridgewater chocolates; Strawberry and tarragon soda from Rouge Tomate; Frrrrozen hot chocolate from Serendipity.
Here is a valid reason to start drinking boxed wine as opposed to bottled. Boxed wine is much less likely to develop the bad taste known as “lady bug taint.” It has to do with the cartons having an aluminum seal which helps absorb the odors. This unique taste results from chemicals in the grapes and the remains of the ladybug beetles that are sometimes crushed together. [New Scientist]

I am obsessed with where and what the Obamas eat. It’s comforting to know I am not in the minority. It appears that people are more interested in their dining habits than in the events of the world. It’s nice to have a president who likes going out and cares about what he eats. It’s also rewarding for the restaurants he goes to because they get a big bump in business. [Google]

Here is a list of places to go to celebrate Father’s day next Sunday, June 21st, 2009. The restaurants range from free PB & J sandwiches at Peanut Butter & Co. to a barbeque cooking class at Wildwood Barbeque. [Zagat Buzz]

Until we eat again,
Jordana Z.

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