Blog of Award-winning authors
ANDREW DORNENBURG & KAREN PAGE
Named one of GourmetFood.About.com's "Top 10 Food Blogs"
Named one of The Fifty Best Links for Epicureans
Named to MUG 400 for "distinctive contribution to life in New York"
"Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page monitor the pulse of the food world like nobody's business. There's a fantastic database of restaurant reviews, too."
— Babbo pastry chef Gina DePalma
"If you asked me what I came into this world to do,
I will tell you: I came to live out loud."
— Critic and novelist Emile Zola (1840-1902)
"There is nothing under the sun better for man than to eat, drink, and be merry. Go, therefore, eat your bread with joy and drink your wine with cheer.”
— Ecclesiastes 8:15
Saturday, January 17, 2009 — We feared it was bad news when we learned that Barbara-Jo's Books to Cooks in Vancouver had run out of copies of THE FLAVOR BIBLE before the holidays. Weren't they well-stocked after our event there in September? Apparently, they were — they just weren't prepared to see THE FLAVOR BIBLE fly off the shelves to the point where the book was their #1 bestselling title the week of December 13-19, 2008.
The discerning staff at Barbara-Jo's Books to Cooks has now compiled their Top 10 Favorite Cookbooks of 2008, and we're honored to see THE FLAVOR BIBLE among them. They're asking for email votes for your favorites, so we invite you to email the gang at firstname.lastname@example.org with a good word for THE FLAVOR BIBLE before the polls close at 6 pm on January 29th!
Karen Page and Susan Butler congratulate director Danny
Boyle on his "Best Picture" win for "Slumdog Millionaire"
Thursday, January 15, 2009 — It's been a big week for director Danny Boyle, whose film "Slumdog Millionaire" took home awards from Sunday night's Golden Globes out in L.A. as well as last night's National Board of Review Awards Gala at Cipriani right here in Manhattan. After having seen "Slumdog Millionaire" on Sunday afternoon, we were especially happy to be able to congratulate Danny last night on his latest win!
Picholine chef-owner Terrance
Brennan with Karen, Andrew and
Ouest chef Tom Valenti in 2003
Picholine amuses-bouches inspired by street food on sticks
Fall Vegetable Salad with Black Truffle, Walnut Brittle
Borscht Soup with Mustard Ice Cream, Goat Cheese Tuile
Jamon Iberico de Bellota with Fig Marshmallows
Nantucket Bay Scallops w/Blood Orange, Horseradish Granite
Wagyu Number Ten with Cipollini Kimchi
Huckleberry Cloud with 25-year Aceto Balsamico
Tradizionale, Chocolate Salt
Exotic Fruit Soup with Passion Foam, Coconut Tapioca
Monday, January 12, 2009 — After last week's very enjoyable visit to Belgium (to co-keynote the first global food pairing conference The Flemish Primitives in Brugge), we're happy to be back in New York and reflecting on 2008 as we kick off 2009.
Perhaps our single best dinner of last year was at Picholine, where we indulged in a dinner last month to celebrate Andrew's half-century birthday. As luck would have it, a snowstorm hit Manhattan that day, and we were informed that dozens had called to cancel their reservations that night because of it. But the other diners' loss was our gain, as Picholine rewarded those of us hardy enough to make it in that night by spoiling us rotten.
We've long been avid admirers of chef-owner Terrance Brennan's extraordinary talent. Our first dinner at Picholine in 1995 was one of the best meals of our lives, as we marveled at the way he made classic flavor combinations come alive, and exhibited unusual mastery of menu planning and pacing. We both found it to be a four-star caliber experience at that point in time, even if local newspaper critics hadn't awarded it that official status.
But then the cheese bug bit, and Terrance went on to open Artisanal Bistro and the Artisanal Cheese Center. After he sold the latter last year, he decided to refocus on his culinary artistry at Picholine. The results are unexpectedly masterful, as he takes his food and flavors and their presentation into exciting new modern directions.
Picholine is at 35 West 64th Street, between Central Park West and Broadway, in Manhattan. (212) 724-8585.
Update: There are new, more economical ways to enjoy chef Terrance Brennan's celebrated restaurants Picholine and Artisanal Bistro, according to an email we just received that seems well worth sharing:
* The Menu d'Economie at Picholine is now available in the Dining Room by reservation Monday through Thursday after 9 pm. Guests can also call the restaurant for same day reservations (Monday through Thursday) to check the availability of tables in the Dining Room prior to 9 pm. The Menu d'Economie remains available in the Cheese and Wine Bar each night throughout the evening. The Menu d’Economie features a dozen Tasting Plates — half-portion entrees — for $20 each. A four-course, prix fixe Menu d’Economie will also be available for $72. On Monday nights, guests can enjoy any bottle of wine, $150 or less, at half price in the Dining Room or in the Cheese and Wine Bar. The 60 under 60 wine list is also available at the Cheese and Wine Bar. www.picholinenyc.com. 212-724-8585.
* Meanwhile, Monday night is COMFORT FOOD NIGHT at Artisanal Bistro and Wine Bar. Chef-Proprietor Terrance Brennan has assembled a comfort food menu that includes dishes (all priced under $20) like Lamb Meatloaf and Roasted Chicken with Mashed Potatoes. Artisanal has also introduced a new Bar Menu featuring a Grilled Cheese Bar ($12 to $15), a one-of-a-kind Pomme Frites Menu ($9) and Amuse-Bouches such as Smoked Paprika Popcorn and Paella Spring Rolls. The Bar Menu is available at the bar until 11 pm Monday through Saturday, and Sunday until 10 pm. www.artisanalbistro.com. 212-725-8585.
Thursday, January 1, 2009 — There are few better ways to start the New Year than to push the "Send" button on a presentation you'll be delivering at a gastronomy conference next week — except, perhaps, to immediately thereafter discover that BarnesandNoble.com lists your new book as #1 in its category:
"1. FLAVOR BIBLE by Andrew Dornenburg (sic). 2. Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics by Ina Garten. 3. Diners, Drive-ins and Dives by Guy Fieri. 4. Lucia's Survival Guide and Cookbook by Lucille Campilongo. 5. Fish Without a Doubt by Rick Moonen."
—"Current Bestsellers: Cooking , Food & Wine," BarnesandNoble.com (January 1, 2009)
Happy New Year indeed!
Tuesday, December 23, 2008 — This morning we were thrilled to see culinary powerhouse Sara Moulton mention THE FLAVOR BIBLE on "Good Morning America" among her picks of "The Best Cookbooks of 2008." Sara acknowledged, "This is the hardest segment I do...There are so many good ones this year. It's a really good year." We held our breath until she mentioned THE FLAVOR BIBLE as her final pick: "Last but not least....This is for the serious, serious home cook. This will give you wings to stop making recipes and just figure it out yourself....The bulk of it is actually an encyclopedia about ingredients and what goes with them." We love the idea of THE FLAVOR BIBLE being a book that gives readers wings and helps them soar! If you'd like to read Sara's complete list of the best cookbooks of the year, you can do so by clicking www.abcnews.com.
THE FLAVOR BIBLE
What's the impact of "Good Morning America"? Here's today's list of the Top 5 Cooking, Food & Wine Bestsellers on Amazon.com, which you can compare to the Top 15 of a week ago below:
1. Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics by Ina Garten
2. How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman
3. Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives by Guy Fieri
4. The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan
5. THE FLAVOR BIBLE by Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg
Tuesday, December 16, 2008 — Please join us on Saturday, December 20th, from 4-6 pm for a complimentary wine and cheese tasting at Le Du's Wines at 600 Washington Street (bet. Morton & Leroy) in the West Village. We'll be signing copies of our newly-rereleased 2007 IACP "Cookbook of the Year" and Georges Duboeuf "Wine Book of the Year" Award winner WHAT TO DRINK WITH WHAT YOU EAT along with a limited number of copies of our latest book THE FLAVOR BIBLE, both of which will be available for sale.
Books will be available in limited quantities, so please pre-reserve yours by emailing in advance if you're planning to do any major holiday shopping there!
THE FLAVOR BIBLE
Wondering what others are giving their favorite foodies this holiday season? Here's a list of the Top 15 Cooking, Food & Wine Bestsellers on Amazon.com:
1. Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics by Ina Garten
2. Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives by Guy Fieri
3. Rachel Ray's Big Orange Book
4. How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman
5. The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan
6. Joy of Cooking by Irma Rombauer et al
7. Giada's Kitchen by Giada De Laurentiis
8. Hello Cupcake by Alan Richardson and Karen Tack
9. How to Eat Supper by Lynne Rossetto Kasper and Sally Swift
10. Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver
11. Top Chef: The Cookbook
12. Ben & Jerry's Homemade Ice Cream and Dessert Book
13. Martha Stewart's Cooking School
14. THE FLAVOR BIBLE by Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg
15. Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes by Jeff Hertzberg & Zoe Francois
Andrew, Terri & Brian as the season's first snowflakes fell
WHAT TO DRINK WITH WHAT YOU EAT at the MoMA Store
Chef Daniel Humm's suckling pig at Eleven Madison Park
Poinsettias from our friend Susan — this year (the red one)
and last year (the lively green one in the straw basket)
Wednesday, December 10, 2008 — It's the holiday season, even if the current economic climate is casting a shadow over this year's celebrations. We were happy to share the first snowflakes we've seen in New York with our friends Terri and Brian after dinner on Saturday night.
On Monday night, we shared an extraordinary visit to the MoMA (including Miro and van Gogh exhibitions) and were treated to dinner at The Modern in honor of our friend Susan's birthday, which is actually today. (Happy Birthday, Susan!)
Enjoying great food at Danny Meyer's restaurants continued over lunch the next day when we visited Eleven Madison Park for the press announcement of the restaurant's being named a Grand Chef Relais & Chateaux property, joining the New York ranks of Aureole, Daniel, Jean Georges, Le Bernardin and Per Se. Danny bravely addressed the issue of the economy in comparing it to bad weather: You can talk about it and decide to stay in, or you can open an umbrella and go about finding a way to enjoy the day.
Fear will not lead to the solutions that can get us through this crisis. But hope — the root of the word "hospitality" (as Meyer pointed out) — should.
P.S. Our other friend Susan (Butler) has now sent us two gorgeous holiday poinsettias — a red one this year, and another one last year that started out with red flowers, but is now more notable for its quite green and lush leaves!
Eleven Madison Park is at 11 Madison Avenue (near 24th Street) in Manhattan. Congratulations to Danny Meyer, his partner Paul Bolles-Beaven, chef Daniel Humm, and their entire team at the restaurant on being named a Grand Chef Relais & Chateaux property.
Glenn Hall and Tannis Kowalchuk
Sarah Dey Hirshan at HERE Arts Center
Friday, December 5, 2008 — A self-described "carnival-style crime investigation filled with live original rock music, high-energy acrobatics, slapstick comedy antics, cross-dressing, and twentieth century philosophy," "The Uncanny Appearance of Sherlock Holmes" opened last night at HERE Arts Center at 145 Sixth Avenue (bet. Spring and Broome). However you describe this show, you simply cannot call it boring: The multi-talented cast — including our gorgeous, strong-as-an-ox bass-playing and convincingly gender-bending actress friend Sarah Dey Hirshan — packs in an astounding amount of music, song, dance, and prose into this less-than-two-hour show.
As the cast alternates acting with performing as a rock band throughout the night, we were amazed to learn that few had any prior musical experience. In fact, Sarah had never played bass until she managed to teach herself to do so for this show!
For the bargain price of $20, you can catch "The Uncanny Appearance of Sherlock Holmes" at HERE through Sunday, December 21st .
TIP: Save room before, during or after the performance for a snack next door at One Dominick, the casual snack bar run by our friend Jimmy Carbone of Jimmy's No. 43.
"The Uncanny Appearance of Sherlock Holmes" is the latest theatre production by the internationally renowned ensemble theatre company North American Cultural Laboratory (NACL), which was founded
in 1997 by American director Brad Krumholz and Canadian performer Tannis Kowalchuk. After a year and a half of development, it premiered in New York in February of 2007. It has played at Humber College in Toronto, The Artistic Ancestry Festival in New Orleans, and The NACL Catskill Festival of New Theatre.
Thursday, December 4, 2008 — "Busy" doesn't begin to describe the past several weeks! Instead of posting a new blog entry today, we're going to invite you to visit our Amazon.com Blog by clicking here. You can access its latest entries any time by visiting the Amazon.com page for any of our books.
Citymeals-on-Wheels' 22nd Annual Power Lunch for Women
Author Erica Jong, Jeanette Sarkisian Wagner, Karen Page
Karen Page, Corcoran's Sharon Baum, and Cheryl Benton
Author Laura Day, ABC News' Jessica Guff, and Karen Page
William Morris Agency EVP Jennifer Walsh
Bestselling author Laura Day with Bernadette Peters
Karen Page (c.) with Geraldine Ferraro and Donna Zaccaro
Karen Page with Jenifer Harvey Lang of Cafe des Artistes
A large pumpkin turned Martha Stewart jack-o-lantern
Gloria Steinem, Isabelle Kirshner, and Karen Page
Authors Carol Higgins Clark & Mary Higgins Clark (her mom!)
Food Network host / chef Bobby Flay and Karen Page
Barbara Goldsmith, Adm. Susan Blumenthal, Gael Greene
Martha Stewart's Lucinda Scala Quinn and Karen Page
Liz Smith greets Susan Magrino and honoree Martha Stewart
Roxie Munro chats w/Karen, Donald Tober w/Cindy Adams
Los Angeles designer / restaurateur Barbara Lazaroff
Honoree Lynda Resnick of Fiji Water / POM
Karen & French Culinary Institute's Dorothy Cann Hamilton
Laura Day, Karen Page, Donald Tober, and Gael Greene
"Take your pick!"
Attendees receive their choice of THE FLAVOR BIBLE or
WHAT TO DRINK WITH WHAT YOU EAT from Little, Brown
Karen Page with James Beard Foundation's Susan Ungaro
Ariane Daguin of D'Artagnan knows flavor!
Rita Jammet (long of La Caravelle) with Karen Page
Saturday, November 22, 2008 — "Let Power Go to Your...Heart." So suggests the motto of Citymeals-on-Wheels' Annual Power Lunch for Women, which celebrated its 22nd anniversary yesterday at The Rainbow Room by raising more than $1.15 million to provide nearly 200,000 nutritious meals to New York's homebound elderly.
We're grateful to Little, Brown for generously contributing copies of our books THE FLAVOR BIBLE and WHAT TO DRINK WITH WHAT YOU EAT for guests to take home after the event.
Speaking of contributions...'tis the season for making contributions, and you can do so online in just a few minutes here.
Chefs Alex Raij and Eder Montero in Txikito's kitchen
Txikito makes simple ingredients — even beans — shine
Sunday, November 9, 2008 — Congratulations to chefs Alex Raij and Eder Montero on the debut of Txikito (chee-KEE-to; Euskeran for "little"), which we had the pleasure of visiting last night for a few little bites and some sips of a rich and fruity red wine wine cocktail called Zurracapote.
We'd fallen in love with this husband-and-wife team's cuisine at Tia Pol, and look forward to returning to Txikito for another taste of Spain's Basque country very soon.
Txikito is at 240 Ninth Avenue (bet. 24th & 25th Streets), Manhattan. (212) 242-4730. Web: www.txikitonyc.com
Alexandra's Peanut Buttery Bliss
Friday, November 7, 2008 — Free cookies? What's better than that? We just received an email from our friend "Insatiable Critic" Gael Greene about a contest that launches at noon on Monday, November 10th, where the prizes include guess-what:
The ‘Insatiable’ Cookie Chase
What: An online foodie adventure with delicious prizes! Skill and luck are the tools needed to win. Designed for everyone who seeks, lives and savors the good life of taste.
Who: This contest is sponsored and administered by Gael Greene, Insatiable Critic and Alexandra Bruskoff of Alexandra’s Cookie Dreams.
How: Posted on the Alexandra’s Cookie Dreams blog, Talk Is Sweet (www.AlexandrasCookieDreams.com/blog) titled, “Feast Your Eyes On This Life!” an exclusive and amusing interview with Gael Greene, the legendary novelist and restaurant critic, about her life in food. One answer will be missing on the blog posting. For clues leading to the missing answer, participants will be directed to Ms. Greene’s BITE: My Journal on her web site.
Participants then email the response they find to Alexandra@AlexandrasCookieDreams.
All the correct responses will be placed in a lottery and three winners will be selected. Each winner will receive a personalized, autographed copy of INSATIABLE: Tales from a Life of Delicious Excess, and one of three gourmet cookie prizes. Grand Prize: three dozen cookies, 2nd Place: two dozen cookies and 3rd Place: one dozen cookies. The cookies can go to the winner or be sent as a gift to someone else.
When: Contest starts November 10th, 2008 and ends December 10th 2008, winner to be announced December 11th, 2008.
Where: www.AlexandrasCookieDreams.com and www.InsatiableCritic.com
Why: Why not? Who doesn’t love an adventure, free cookie gifts and the delicious details of an adventurous woman’s life?
Murray's isn't just about cheese anymore -- don't miss
Murray's Real Salami, new in Grand Central Market
Check out the gorgeous meats in Murray's meat case
Thursday, November 6, 2008 — We've got a wonderful new neighbor we're thrilled to welcome to the neighborhood: Murray's Real Salami, which just opened in Grand Central Market (in Grand Central Terminal, near Lexington Avenue and 43rd Street).
We've been good customers of Murray's Cheese since their first week in the same location (not to mention since the days Andrew used to cook around the corner from their Greenwich Village location), and are happy to have a wonderful new source for cooked and cured meats just a five-minute walk from our home.
We recently tasted our way through a sampling of Murray's Real Salami's offerings, which we paired with some of Murray's own Parmesan cheese (and a bottle of Lucien Albrecht Pinot Gris we just happened to have on hand -- while we love Murray's for going to the trouble to recommend different wine pairings for its various salumi, we weren't being quite that uptight that particular night). Andrew went crazy for the Knuckle Ham ($18/lb.), whose meat source is listed as "Niman Ranch, Blue Water Pork, Coleman Natural, Heritage Acres." Karen loved the sweet (and garlicky!) Sopressata ($26/lb.) from Salmon Creek Farms, an American interpretation of the Italian classic.
Murray's Real Salami is in Grand Central Market (in Grand Central Terminal, near Lexington Avenue & 43rd Street), Manhattan. (212) 867-7202. Web: http://www.murrayscheese.com/real_salami.asp
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