NYC’s Most Festive Fall-Inspired Cocktails

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The Harvest Sour // Bar Moga

As New York City says goodbye to the sweltering heat of summer, restaurants and bars throughout the city launch their autumn-inspired menus, which are always accompanied by seasonal libations.

From apple and cranberry to ginger and coffee, the flavors of the season meet their match with wines, ciders, bourbons and more.

So when you decide you’re over the classic pumpkin spice latte, here’s a roundup to help you find the perfectly spiced, warming drink substitution.

The Campbell

Situated within Grand Central Terminal, The Campbell is a masterfully restored New York institution with a luxe, swanky atmosphere. Warm up with a coffee old fashioned with Suntori Toki Japanese whisky, coffee syrup and coffee bitters, garnished with a citrus twist.

The Flying Cock

A Murray Hill gastropub, The Flying Cock is a popular hotspot that offers a pretty epic boozy brunch. However, if you want to swing by for just the boozy part, you won’t be disappointed. Order the seasonally appropriate Pants On Fire, which is a mix of bourbon, root beer liqueur, cinnamon, angostura bitters and ginger beer.

Mr. Purple

On the 15th floor of Hotel Indigo Lower East Side is Mr. Purple, an ultra-chic rooftop bar and restaurant. Enjoy panoramic views of the city as you sip on The Blood and Sand, a stiff libation with Macallan 12 year scotch, vermouth, Cherry Heering and orange juice.

Loews Regency New York Hotel

Upscale, art deco inspired Loews Regency New York Hotel is featuring two fall cocktails that highlight favorite autumn flavors.

For a strong cocktail, check out the Autumn Old Fashion which incorporates orange, cranberry nectar, bourbon and Angostura bitters in a glass, then garnished with an orange peel and finished with a cinnamon sugar rim.

Interested in a sweet treat? Order the Baked Apple Pie cocktail. With muddled apple, cinnamon sugar syrup, mezcal, bourbon and cider, this cocktail is the ideal dessert substitution for a slice of apple pie.

If these two drinks don’t do it for you, take advantage of Flavor by Loews Hotels, a newly launched experience giving guests the chance to try out local flavors, by tasting one of the many Brooklyn Gin cocktails offered.

Dullboy Bar

If you’re looking for something that feels seasonal without the usual coffee and pumpkin spice flavors that dominate October, check out The Bold & Smokey by Gabriel Rieben of Dullboy Bar in Jersey City.

With Paul John Bold Whisky, Stolen Smoked Rum, Gran Classico bitter liqueur and St. George Spiced Pear Liqueur, it’s a fun twist on the typical brown spirit cocktail.

The Stanton Social

Known for chef-owner Chris Santos’ menu of eclectic tapas, The Stanton Social is offering the Fall to Pieces this autumn season. This libation has a nice tropical twist thanks to its splash of Coconut Oil Washed Monkey Spiced Rum and is accompanied by lime and cinnamon flavors.

SUGARCANE raw bar grill Brooklyn

Old Havana-inspired SUGARCANE raw bar grill in Brooklyn is offering a Tobacco Rum Old Fashioned with Mount Gay Black Barrel rum, maple syrup, Angostura bitters and homemade cigar bitters. Between the maple syrup and the tobacco-infused flavors, it’s akin to sitting next to a fireplace in Vermont.

Hudson’s at Pier 81

Want to cozy up with a warm drink while admiring views of the Manhattan skyline? Take a seat aboard Hudson’s at Pier 81, a lounge and rooftop situated on a 3-story, 160 ft. yacht.

While cruising on the river, why not take in the unobstructed views of the city with a hot Hull of a Mulled Wine in hand? With spices, a hint of lemon and red wine, this beverage is all sorts of comforting.

Bar Moga

Bar Moga is a hip, newly opened “1920s Japanese cocktail bar,” that features Japanese-influenced libations in a retro, glam setting.

A fall specialty that can’t be missed? The Harvest Sour which is a potent concoction of lemon, applejack, rye whiskey, egg white and Angostura and Peychaud bitters.

Runner & Stone

Local favorite Runner & Stone is a neighborhood restaurant, bakery and bar in Brooklyn. If you find yourself in the Gowanus area, pop in and order the inventive Build Me Up Butternut with Old Overholt Rye, butternut squash syrup and allspice dram.

Saxon + Parole

The East Village’s Saxon + Parole is an equestrian-themed American eatery offering a menu full of meat-centric dishes in a lively atmosphere.

For a caffeinated cocktail to get your evening started, order the Take That, Dark & Storm. With espresso-infused rum, ginger beer, lime juice and candied ginger, it’s a sweet zinger of a cocktail.

P.S. Kitchen

Whisky and hearty autumn vegetables go hand in hand. Curious about how roots complement the spirit’s peaty notes? Then head to P.S. Kitchen, a vegan restaurant where 100 percent of profits go to charity, to try The XO. This libation is made with smoked single malt whisky, fresh beet juice, orange juice, muddled raspberries and maple syrup.

Gloria

This Hell’s Kitchen locale is a cozy, contemporary restaurant dedicated to sustainable seafood plates. For a cocktail that showcases the herbal earthiness of a good gin, pair your meal with the Featherbottom. This libation combines gin, cardamaro, bonal and spruce, creating a minimally sweet, crisp drink.

Mastro’s Steakhouse

In the mood for creamy, indulgent after dinner cocktails? Mastro’s Steakhouse is your best pick with two dessert-like cocktails to choose from.

The salted caramel martini features vodka, Gabriel Boudier liqueur de caramel and whipped cream served up with a sea salt rim. The espresso martini consists of Patron XO Café, Svedka vanilla vodka and fresh espresso shaken cold and served up.

Ai Fiori 

Altamarea Group’s Ai Fiori is rolling out “Fall Fridays” this season. Every Friday, after 3 p.m., guests can come in and enjoy a NY Whisky Flight and select ciders and fall cocktails.

In addition, it’s offering Apple Cider Madeleines paired with Orchard Hill Cider Mill, Ten66 Red Label Pommeau.

The Late Late

Located in the Lower East Side, The Late Late is a retro, Irish-inspired pub that prides itself on being a “local” establishment. Start your night with an almost traditional Irish coffee with Irish whiskey, mezcal, espresso liqueur, whipped cream and Cadbury chocolate dust.

The original article is featured in Travel Pulse and can be read here.

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NYC Spotlight | Sanatorium

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Sanatorium: a hospital for the treatment of chronic diseases or various nervous disorders. 
 If you’re over regular, run-of-the-mill, Lower East Side bars, then rejuvenate with innovative libations at Sanatorium — a new, hidden cocktail bar from Apotheke creator, Albert Trummer, also known as the “scientist of cocktails.” Truly one-of-a-kind, the theme of this upscale cocktail lounge is, you guessed it, a hospital.

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Though it might seem a bit off-putting to order drinks with names like Stitched Up (Turkish fig-infused rye whiskey) and In the Ambulance (thyme elixir, orange oil, and fresh rosemary), after one sip you’ll forget all about your former hesitations.
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The lounge, modeled after a 1930s medicine hospital, exudes cool with its green Venetian plaster walls and vintage furniture like blue velvet love seats, chandeliers, and chrome and steel accents. There’s also an operating table equipped with surgical lights that illuminates the bar, beakers, test tubes, bottled up elixir potions, and more hospital-ish décor throughout the space.
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Guests can request unique cocktails based on their own tastes, but some of the drinks on the menu might hit the spot, too: One option is Recovery Time (vodka, raspberry, earl grey, lemon, and hibiscus elixir), and another is the O.R. (rum, pineapple, lemon-infused sugarcane, cilantro, habanero, vanilla elixirs, and angostura).
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The charming bartenders are well-dressed, seasoned professionals. Special shout out to bartender Chris Norton for making our first time experiencing Sanatorium both educational and intoxicating.

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NYC Spotlight | Meatpacking District’s Newest Hot Spot Hybrid: Kola House

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The kola nut is a caffeine-containing nut of the kola tree. {Credit: Kola House}

Meatpacking District’s Kola House had a lot of expectations to live up to. Touted as one of the biggest and hottest openings of Fall, this 5,000 square foot space is the “first experimental kola bar, restaurant, lounge and event space to open in the U.S. market.” According to a recent press release. “The flagship location (in Meatpacking) will also serve as a transformative event space for pop culture moments in music, art, style, film, sports and more.” The Kola House pays homage to the kola nut, a nut that also drives the creativity and inspiration of its cocktails, elixirs and specialty plates on the menu.

PepsiCo owns this modern, oh-so-trendy hotspot, but you’d never guess it based on the atmosphere, décor and style of the space. You won’t see any iconic red, white and blue cans, or any other hint of product-pushing from the food and beverage conglomerate. What you will see are exposed brick walls, a shiny back bar and cocktail infusion area, copper accents, hard wood floors, a space for impromptu pop-up performances and an illuminated square sculpture hanging from the ceiling.

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{Credit: Kola House}

The cocktails and elixirs are some of the best we’ve ever had. Alex Ott is Kola House’s sensory ringmaster — the beverage magician, if you will. Upon reading his bio you’ll read the following about his skills which, “combine sensory dining/drinking psychology with his unique knowledge of hangover preventative elixirs, alcoholic and non-alcoholic functional and disease preventative beverages, nootropics, dietary supplements as well as deep space travel and fine fragrance.” If you’re a little confused as to what that actually means, we can help you. The drinks are out-of-this-world.

The intergalactic peace is described as “a stunning and memory evoking spectacle of beverage induced interconnectedness.” This cocktail comes in a glass dome which houses campfire smells of woods, tobacco, and sandalwood, and inside this dome of fragrance is your cocktail of spiced cognac/rum, tobacco infused honey, sandalwood, vanilla, pear and lime. Before you imbibe, you can inhale the incredible mix of smells which enhances the entire drinking experience.

If you’re looking for something calming, get the Mind & body, which is described as a “resort like elixir with mood regulating and anti-inflammatory properties.” Think: mild bitters, white cranberry, levigated pearl garnished with a delightful spruce pillow of forest scents. Absolutely lovely.

Bottom line: make sure to get some cocktails.

On the food side, Kola House’s Executive Chef, Jon Feshan draws from his Persian heritage to create New American cuisine that highlights purity of flavor and freshness of the ingredients used.

We ordered a nice selection of dishes which began with a fresh fig toast with sweet, crunchy maple-glazed hazelnuts and cheese; the unique wild salmon tartare which came atop crispy sticky rice, and a scallion crème fraiche; and the very filling pork shoulder carnitas which was seasoned with a kola spice rub served with warm tortillas.

To some, that may sound like a full meal. Not for us. We continued the feast with a light dish of braised beets with lemon yogurt, pistachio granola and chunks of pickled strawberry. The grand finally was the roasted & fried chicken with collard greens and a side of house-made Fresno hot sauce butter. Similar to a buffalo sauce on steroids. The roasted chicken was juicy, while the fried chicken had a satisfying crunchy coating surround the also tender meat. This dish is meant to be shared and is a must-try for lovers of buffalo chicken wings.

For dessert we recommend the s’mores bowl – no need for explanation on that decision. It’s indulgently sweet.

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NYC Spotlight | Row House

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This Kale & Quinoa Salad could be the best salad I’ve ever had.

What do you most associate with Harlem, the Upper West Side’s culturally diverse and historically rich neighborhood? If one of the things on the top of the list isn’t dining, then you’re doing something wrong.

Harlem is rapidly becoming the trendy, go-to area for an extensive variety of cuisines. Restaurants, speak-easies, cocktail bars, and more are continually popping up – so much so that it now has its own bonafide restaurant row. Where else can you get Senegalese, Somalian, Soul Food, or world-class cookies (Levain Bakery, anyone?) all in the same place?

If you’re looking for a fun, classy spot to share a whole bunch of delicious things with your friends,you need to try out the Row House. With both vintage and contemporary design elements, the atmosphere is lively, bright, and stylish. The cuisine is New American (always a tough one to pin down), and offers a large selection of (mostly) small plates meant to be shared. Tapas style almost.

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Lobster Rolls

The cocktails are on-point. Definitely try the Funky Strong, a beet-infused vodka with ginger, mint, and lime, garnished with a vodka-soaked beet slice. It’s colorful and surprisingly excellent. Don’t let the beets intimidate you!

The menu is broken up into four sections: harvest, sea, land, and large plates. Chef Andrew Welch offers innovative takes on American classics. For example, deviled eggs are offered in two ways, neither of which are traditional: chicken liver mousse, pickled shallots, candied mustard seeds, and cilantro; and the “summer” deviled eggs with vibrant, beet brined eggs.

I don’t usually opt for salads, so when I say the kale and quinoa salad is fantastic, you can take my word for it. First off, it’s gorgeous. With purple and golden beets, goat cheese, and fennel, topped with a crispy squash blossom, it was a work of art. Throw in crunchy prosciutto and hazelnuts and –  boom! – perfection.

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Shrimp & Grits

From the sea selection, we ordered the shrimp and grits with creamy, cheesy polenta, jalapeño, and satisfying bits of salty chorizo; New England lobster roll sliders with the classic Old Bay mayo; and the fish tacos, which came with a lovely radish, jicama-jalapeño slaw. The seafood was fresh, and the combinations of flavor utilized in each plate was outstanding. Other options included the grilled Spanish octopus with eggplant and summer squash and lobster croquettes with a savory risotto.

For the land selection, I insisted we get the carbonara dumplings. With parmesan cream on the inside, and crisp prosciutto on top, they were bites of pure indulgence. I’d like to point out that The Row House really does prosciutto right – it complements the flavors of the dishes so well. Other dishes include lollipop chicken drumsticks with an Asian soy sesame glaze and the steak tartare with crispy capers and homemade potato chips.

The large plates range from braised short ribs with black truffle and a five-spice glaze; lamb chops; and a traditional New York Strip with veal jus; to king salmon with beets and leek; truffle grilled cheese with bacon; and branzino with a crystalized ginger broth.

Desserts here are creative  –  the molten white chocolate cake comes warm, filled with a white chocolate ganache, and garnished with fresh grapefruit, tangerines, and raspberries. We also couldn’t help but get the red velvet ice cream sandwiches: red velvet cookies stuffed with cream cheese ice cream and rolled in chocolate. No regrets.

Lastly, rumor has it that there’s a lower level speak-easy named Under Bar… Can someone inquire about this and get back to me with the details?

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Brooklyn’s McCarren Hotel & Pool Launches New Poolside and Rooftop Menus

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Get out of Manhattan and take a dip at this hipster retreat in the heart of Williamsburg

McCarren Hotel & Pool is one of those hidden gems of New York – the type of place that makes you realize how many different ways there are to experience New York. Located in the ever-so-trendy Williamsburg in Brooklyn, McCarren is this gorgeously cool hotel.

The hotel’s secluded pool, one of the largest around, offers reserved, cushy pool beds for those wanting to lounge by the water, as well as beach umbrellas, cushions, and plenty of tasty snacks and cocktails.

The atmosphere is chic, retro, laid back, and yet very trendy… it’s so Williamsburg, in a good way. With bright orange balconies surrounding the pool area, tiered seating, and lots of colorful accents, strips, and patterns adorning the walls, it’s a one-of-a-kind pool experience. Live music, DJs, and vibrant street art sets the scene, making McCarren’s pool deck a stylish and unique way to escape the heat.

IMG_0511New seasonal highlights from the hotel’s restaurant, Oleanders, include the Maine lobster roll, which is one of the meatiest I’ve ever had! For a summer twist, it’s served “ballpark style” from hawker boxes by the pool and is lightly dressed with truffle aïoli on a toasted Balthazar’s Bakery bun. Additionally, there’s an all-beef Brooklyn hot dog, also served “ballpark style,” topped with house-made piccalilli relish, ketchup, and crispy tobacco onions.

Lighter options offered include the watermelon and feta salad (a surprisingly delicious combo) and sweet corn elote with an aïoli, aged cheese, and espelette. And, of course, a classic cheeseburger is offered, as well as a roasted pesto chicken sandwich.

McCarren’s non-alcoholic fresh fruit pops, such as the strawberries and cream and pineapple and thyme, are a summer day necessity. Classic cocktail-inspired boozy ice pops, made with Victory Garden, are also in the works in flavors such as chocolate with Mezcal, Italian-style aperitivo, and vanilla with rum.

No pool party would be complete without some libations, right? The available cocktails (whether poolside or on the rooftop) are fantastic. The Green Beast with St. George absinthe verte, cucumber, and lime; the Brazilian Mango Cooler with cachaça, Giffard Banane du Brésil, lemon, mango, and apple; and the Bahia (my favorite) with rum, caffo amaretto, pineapple, and coco lopez, are just a few of the fun beverages offered.

From the pool, you can continue the party on the beautiful rooftop, which boasts panoramic views of New York City, overlooking McCarren Park. The playful bright yellow and black motif on the upholstery, old school rap background music, and cooling breeze makes for the perfect post-swim chill out session.
IMG_0519The rooftop menu offers an impressive raw bar, offering guests a selection of oysters, a shellfish tower, shrimp cocktail, and tuna tartare. Heartier fare includes the crispy lamb ribs with a spiced honey glaze, smoked beef shank tamales, and the pork belly steam buns. Beer and wine is also available, along with the cocktails offered at the pool.

So spend the day basking in the sunshine and the rest of the evening relaxing with drinks and bites on the rooftop. What really beats that on a blazing New York day?

For more information on the McCarren Hotel & Pool, click here.

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Asian Fusion, Craft Beer and Cocktails, and Skyline Views at Brooklyn’s Kimoto Rooftop

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For a change from the boring, played-out bar scene, visit the top the Aloft and Sheraton hotels

Here’s a new rooftop to add to your list: Kimoto Rooftop in Brooklyn. Most Manhattanites spend all day (and sometimes night) working in their borough’s downtown area. So why stay there any longer than you have to when you’re free?

Escape the Manhattan bubble and hop on over to Brooklyn where this rooftop and lounge offers just as cool of a nightlife/after-work scene as any other place in the city.

The views are naturally gorgeous. The vibe is chic, trendy, and modern. The food is way better than your average, overpriced bar bites, and the menu boasts a nice selection of Asian-inspired food, innovative cocktails, and craft beers.

Lesser-seen beers offered included the Yo-Ho Sorry Yuzu Salt Ale, a light, Japan ale brewed with fresh yuzu juice and peel; and the Ginga Ninja, a tropical red IPA ale brewed with six pounds of ginger in each batch. These are two fruitier beers that even myself — a non-beer drinker (for the most part) — would enjoy.

My favorite cocktails were the sweet, refreshing, and effervescent ones. If you’re like me, you’ll be a fan of the No Sleep Till, with Aperol, lychee, sparkling wine, lemon, and mint; the Mekong Mule, with Kaffir lime-infused Absolut, sake, jasmine, mint, lime, and ginger beer; as well as the Lemongrass Vietnamese, with black pepper, Bombay Sapphire East, Mizu Shochu, and raspberry.

Being of half-Asian descent, I’m always a huge fan of the fusions. Kimoto Rooftop’s Asian-inspired menu didn’t disappoint. The appetizer selection is diverse and features items such as the beef Bulgogi tacos, with homemade kimchi slaw, Asian pear, and toasted sesame; Sriracha buffalo, garlic soy, or gochujang barbecue wings; tuna tartare with a yuzu guacamole, pickled jalapeño, and a spicy aïoli; and the crunchy tempura basket, that comes with shrimp, a whole calamari skewer, a potato croquette, tonkatsu, and wasabi mayo.

If you’re a bit hungrier, I recommend the Kobe beef burger (yum!) which is served with a spicy/sweet kimchi slaw, gochujang barbecue, white truffle oil, and sprouts, or the crispy, juicy pork cutlet with tonkatsu, kewpie mayo, and red cabbage slaw.

This menu, by chef Brian Tsao of Manhattan’s Mira Sushi & Izakaya, is flavorful, eclectic, and an excellent merging of traditional American and Asian cuisines. Plus, with the live DJ, bumping music, and easy-to-find location, it’s a great place to start or end the night.

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Cocktails | Lemon-Aid Your Libations to Perfection

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All you need is a little citrus to boost the flavor of any drink, whether boozy or not. {Credit: Four Pillars}

When life gives you lemons, say thank you, because from those lemons come these sweet and (slightly) sour, thirst-quenching, and oh-so-summertime-perfect libations! Boozy, caffeinated, fruity, tart, or simply refreshing, here are five beverages that take plain old lemonade to new levels of delicious (both alcoholic and not)!

Oiji NYC’s The Flying Nun
Tea fans will love this calming, tart, bubbly refreshment. The innovative use of fragrant chamomile will sooth your taste buds and — lucky for you — this libation is non-alcoholic, so have as many as you want!

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{Credit: Oiji NYC}

Click here for this recipe.

Angry Orchard’s Angry Honey Bee

Cider lovers rejoice! This beverage is perfect for when you want to change up your normal cider consumption by mixing the crisp drink with some fruity flavors and tartness from the lemon juice.

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{Credit: Angry Orchard}

Click here for this recipe.

Is Lemonade Coffee a Trend to Jump On?
Yes, it sounds bizarre, but one of the newest trends in iced coffee is, the coffee lemonade. Similar to an Arnold Palmer, except without the iced tea, this unusual drink combines citrus and caffeine, for a bold and refreshing taste.

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{Credit: Pixabay}

Click here for this recipe.

Four Pillars’ Sub Continental
The intense fragrance of curry leaf combined with fresh lemon juice and the full-bodied spice from the gin makes for a unique, revitalizing summer cocktail.

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{Credit: Rick Liston}

Click here for this recipe.

Sparkling Ice’s Lemon Lavender Cocktail
Instead of gulping down cocktails loaded with sugar, treat yourself to a bubbly, fresh, and healthier sip. With floral lavender notes and a tart sweetness from the lemon, this beverage is perfect for a hot day.

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{Credit: Sparkling Ice/ Brittany Wright}

 Click here for this recipe.

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NYC Spotlight | Bottle & Bine

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Chicken Liver Mousse & Rabbit Terrine

“New American” cuisine is always difficult to define. What is it, really? According to the midtown restaurant Bottle & Bine, it means reimagined American cooking with global twists. Whatever it is exactly, head chef Angie Berry has nailed it. With a career that’s been filled with impressive stretches at some of the top restaurants around, including New York City’s Gotham Bar & Grill, Del Posto, and Asiate in the Mandarin Oriental Hotel, it’s not surprising.

Chef Berry presents her dishes in a beautiful, stylistic fashion that does the complexity and taste of the food justice. Starters are light and refreshing, with seafood being the common denominator. Items featured include scallop sashimi with cauliflower and green apple; razor clams with seaweed pesto and lime; market oysters; local tuna with nori mustard and mushrooms; and the unique dish, which I tried: a raw oyster presented on a bed of ice and seaweed stems, and finished off with a lime green botanical elderflower ice.

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Raw Oyster with Elderberry Ice

Second courses are equally adventurous and creative. I never thought I would enjoy chicken liver mousse, but pair it with strawberry butter, biscuit stuffing, and pickled strawberries and there you have it: a dish that looks like art and tastes like luxury.

Another fantastic dish, which is also one of chef Berry’s favorites, is “shellfish and stems.” It sounds simple, but has layers of flavor thanks to a mix of fregola, stems from Swiss chard and various herbs (including parsley and tarragon), and a variety of shellfish, like squid and clam. It’s topped with a seared scallop and a citrus sabayon.

Other stand-outs were rabbit terrine with rhubarb, foie gras, crispy prosciutto, and, for our cheese course, a selection of artisanal cheeses with nettle purée, pickled green strawberries, and delightful little russet potatoes, slightly undercooked, which gave the cheese some texture.

Mains range from meaty plates such as the Waygu hangar steak with smoked sunchoke, coffee, and hon shimeji mushrooms or braised short ribs with crispy shallots and root vegetables to fish like Atlantic halibut with butternut squash, buckwheat, and brown butter or a pan-seared sea trout with caramelized white asparagus and trout roe.

We were served the Long Island duck, which came as a thick, tender cut of duck which had been seared to a buttery, rich crispness. The savory seasoned duck matched nicely with the sweet braised blueberry sauce. It also with a creamy potato rosti and violet.

The restaurant is trendy, upscale, and yet comfortable. It’s a bi-level restaurant, decorated with metallic accents, navy upholstery, rustic exposed brick walls, and wooden paneling.

The restaurant’s sommelier is knowledgeable about what to pair with each dish. From the 16 craft beer lines that rotate daily to the extensive list of reds, whites, and bubbly, there are plenty of beverages to choose from — not to mention a selection of fantastic cocktails, both alcoholic and not. The Like a Virgin, with rhubarb, pineapple, lemon, and tonic, was amazing though booze-free. That said, I also was a fan of the Izzy & Jane, with mezcal, Cointreau, and jalapeño-rosemary agave.
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Lastly, though it should go without saying: get dessert. The banana pudding is bomb, featuring a cardamom caramel, banana brulee, and a crunchy meringue. If you aren’t into bananas, you can’t go wrong with the warm chocolate cake with sea salt and caramel ice cream, either.

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Events | Thrillist’s Best Day of Your Life 2016

IMG_9553On the longest day of the year, June 18th, Thrillist threw its Best Day of Your Life event in none other than Williamsburg in Brooklyn. Not just a bar crawl or food crawl, but rather an everything crawl, we had only 4 hours to hit up 12 locations and devour a ridiculous amount of food & cocktails. No time was to be wasted, unless we were taking our time to get a little wasted (just kidding!). In other words, our mission was to do it all. Obviously.

Stop 1: Rough Trade — a huge independent music store based in England. Of course, the Williamsburg location is the only one in the U.S., and is home to thousands of vinyl records and CDs, plus listening stations. Here we checked in, took a bunch of pictures, and got our passes!
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Stop 2: The Burger Guru — a meat patty heaven. What we ate: short rib sliders and black-and-white milkshakes. I could have easily had three of each.

Stop 3: Shelter — a pizza & empanada restaurant/ Americana-filled lodge, with an emphasis on Argentina/Italian food. What we ate: Empanadas and Josh Cellars wine pairings.

Stop 4: The Gibson Brooklyn — a chill whiskey and craft beer bar featuring over 100 types of whiskey. What we ate: whole roasted pig BBQ and bourbon sweet teas. Yes, they roasted an entire pig before our eyes! We enjoyed the tender BBQ al fresco on their adorable garden backyard.
IMG_9570Stop 5: Rosarito Fish Shack — a Latin influenced seafood and tequila spot with live mariachis and open-air windows. What we ate: white fish ceviche and signature Rosarito margaritas.

Stop 6: Kent Ale House — a craft beer, sports bar-ish place that offered a stage to anyone wanting to live our their rock star dreams. Sadly, I didn’t perform. What we ate: truffle bacon popcorn and Brooklyn Brewery beer.

Stop 7: Heatonist — a trendy hot sauce shop with over 150 rare and unique hot sauces. Drink: custom Bloody Marys!

Stop 8: Falcon Laundry Bar & Restaurant — an indoor/ outdoor restaurant in a former steel fabrication mill featuring gold fish racing! What we ate: beef-and-tomato-jam sandwiches and jalapeño-spiked tequila cocktails.

Stop 9: Crif Dogs — a small, but crackin’, retro hot dog shop! What we ate: signature Crif Dog and tater tots.

Stop 10: The Meatball Shop — a meatball paradise offering hella types of meatballs & sauces. What we ate: meatballs (duh) and red sauce, served over polenta.

Stop 11: Schmackary’s — one of the best cookie places in the world. What: the ultimate custom cookie station. Basically my dream come true. My creation? A funfetti cookie coated with a thick layer of vanilla and marshmallow frosting, doused in sprinkles, and topped with fruity pebbles (for texture of course.).

Stop 12: Output — a super hipster Brooklyn club with a gorgeous rooftop decorated with lights and leafy vines, crowed with cooling looking people. What we ate: fresh sliced fruit and refreshing Sanpellegrino cocktails. This was a fantastic spot overlooking Manhattan to end the crazy day.

IMG_9604Other awesome things that happened included getting matching (fake) tattoos with Nick, having hot, fresh pizza literally bike-driven to my hands, massages, watching a random pro-skateboarder do his thing on an indoor half-pipe, and being serenaded by mariachis. Oh, there was also a terrifying clown roaming around. I could have gone without that one.

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NYC Spotlight | The Roof at Park South

PSHRoof 1847
Skyline views, innovative cocktails, and tasty bites above the commotion of the city streets. {The Roof at Park South}
One thing I love ― and will absolutely miss whenever I decide to move back to California ― is New York City’s gorgeous rooftop bar scene. There’s something glamorous and exhilarating about literally being above all the stress, odd smells, annoyances, and, at times, the plain gross reality of city living. Warm breezes, insanely picturesque views, killer cocktails, and bites ― honestly, what can top that essential summertime New York City experience?

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