Asheley and I love the city. That’s no secret. If we have any free time on the weekend, that’s probably where you’ll find us. Over the course of this past year, we’ve gotten the itch now and again to move there. We just feel at home in the city. It excites us. And when you think about having all this amazing food at your fingertips all the time, it’s tempting. It really is.
So what’s stopping us? Oh, there are a bunch of reasons. Our jobs for one. Another is having to give up our beautiful home in suburbia to most likely downsize to a one bedroom shoebox apartment for the same price. No yard, no vegetable garden, no grilling… it all adds into the equation.
The itch subsides and we return to being content with the almost weekly visits to our home away from home. But then Chef Marco Canora’s Hearth happened. And that itch came back with a vengeance, bigger than ever. I rarely fall so hard for a restaurant, but Hearth did it to me. I think I’m in love. Hubba hubba.
When it came time to buy tickets for this year’s NYC Wine and Food Festival, Asheley and I each decided to pick one event we really wanted to attend. I immediately picked the Next Iron Chef event, while Asheley really wanted to go to Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian’s Get Pickled workshop. Why, you ask? Well, two reasons actually… Asheley loves pickles, and Asheley loves Geoffrey Zakarian.
Chef Zakarian, who is the chef/owner of both The Lamb’s Club and The National in NYC, is also well known for recently being named the newest Iron Chef and his role as a recurring judge on the James Beard award-winning show, Chopped, on Food Network.
Full disclosure: I definitely thought that the Next Iron Chef event would be the highlight of our NYC Wine and Food Festival weekend. Getting the chance to personally meet and try food prepared by all the Iron Chefs and Next Iron Chef contestants sounded amazing! Don’t get me wrong, it was really, really great, but this pickling class at Geoffrey Zakarian’s The National was totally beyond spectacular. And here’s why…
Iron Chef… It’s the top coveted spot in the culinary food television world. Over the past couple of years, Food Network has sponsored The Next Iron Chef competition, which allows chefs the opportunity to win that priceless Iron Chef jacket and a place in Kitchen Stadium. Past winners have included Michael Symon, Marc Forgione, Jose Garces, and Geoffrey Zakarian. This year’s season of The Next Iron Chef is all about one thing: redemption! Previously eliminated chefs who are hungry for a second chance have the opportunity to again compete for the title of Iron Chef.
To celebrate the impending anticipation of the season premiere on Sunday, November 4 and as part of the New York City Wine and Food Festival, all the current Iron Chefs (minus Bobby Flay, who was hosting his annual taco event across town) and the Next Iron Chef hopefuls came together to throw an unbelievable kick-off gastronomic party, hosted by who else but Alton Brown!
The late-night, walk-around tasting was held at the Meatpacking District’s Highline Stages, directly across the street from Food Network Studios housed in Chelsea Market. Each chef prepared a unique and creative offering, and drinks were a flowing all night long courtesy of Southern Wine & Spirits.
Here is a picture recap of this epic event…
Holy crap, I’m getting married today! Right now my soon-to-be wife and her maidens are getting their hair and make-up done, so I figured, what better way to start off my day than writing a quick post. Last weekend my buddies and I went down to Atlantic City for the big bad bachelor party. A lot of the guys were excited for late nights of gambling and beverages. I was excited for the Saturday morning round of golf and the massive quantities of food I was to enjoy! Don’t judge. After we played our round of golf, a lot of guys took a nap before dinner. A couple of my brave friends joined me on the food crawl I was waiting for all weekend…
Are you bored with your weeknight dinners? I don’t know about you, but mid-week when Asheley and I are both exhausted from work, errands, and life in general, our ”go to” dish always seems to be pasta. It’s fast, cheap, and easy to whip up some pasta with a filetto sauce (quick tomato sauce), and at this point it is pretty effortless for me to make. Although absolutely delicious and completely satisfying in its own right, we definitely craved some variety in our mid-week pasta dinners! And so enters the Eggplant Caponata Pasta..
I’ll be the first to admit it. I’m slightly obsessed with Bobby Flay. I love his shows on Food Network, and I get excited when I’m watching Iron Chef America and he’s the one chosen to battle. Having dined at all 4 of his restaurants numerous times (Bar Americain, Mesa Grill, Bobby Flay Steak, and Bobby’s Burger Palace), I can honestly say I thoroughly enjoy his food and the flavor profiles he creates. He has transformed the way I cook and eat. With that being said, I love when he loses on his t.v. show Throwdown. It is a constant reminder for me that there are SO many great chefs and cooks out there doing their thing day in and day out, without the recognition or fame that comes with being a celebrity chef. One of those underdogs who sent Bobby packing is Belgian native Thomas DeGeest and his Wafels and Dinges Food Truck.