These days, more and more mixologists are bringing the techniques of molecular gastronomy behind the bar, using high-tech methods to refine their drinks. But other bartenders are all about the classics. We asked bartenders across the country: Molecular mixology, yay or nay?
This week on Ask the Critic: a ten-year-old wants to eat the best New York has to offer.
While many of our favorite bartenders have long and storied careers, they all got their start somewhere—and most entry-level gigs weren't too glamorous.
This week on Ask the Critic: I feel like a jerk whenever I change plans and have to cancel a reservation.
When you put hours and hours of effort into a fabulous Thanksgiving meal, you deserve the perfect drink before digging in to turkey and stuffing. What's the best drink to sip before Thanksgiving dinner? We asked bartenders across the country.
This week on Ask the Critic: Where should I throw my friend's baby shower?
As the holidays approach, Manhattan's major attractions draw bigger crowds than ever. And what does just about everyone need after a long day of sightseeing or holiday shopping? A drink. Here are our favorite drinking destinations near major tourist attractions.
Modern mixology spans all kinds of cocktails, from the most classic to the most avant-garde. But some drinks push past "interesting" and go straight to "bizarre."
A stroll around the Heights is as pleasant as can be—the tree-lined streets of brownstones, the magnificent landmarks and Prospect Park at its doorstep. It's a mighty nice place to live, too, with a blend of families that've lived in the area for generations and newer transplants who've fallen in love. And that's reflected in the neighborhood's restaurant makeup, too: some classics, some impressive newcomers.
Where to take a date that you want to know a little better? Some bar and restaurant recommendations herein.
Working with as many spirits as they do, bartenders have the opportunity to become acquainted with some that aren't necessarily appreciated by the broader drinking public. We asked bartenders from around the country: What spirit or liquor do you feel is underappreciated?
Where do you take a tourist when all they want to see is mediocre touristy restaurants? Here are some smart alternatives.
A few weeks ago, we asked members of the Serious Eats community what's in their home bars. This week, we posed the same question to bartenders across the country. Here's what they had to say.
Only a few months old, Piora is still just starting out, and given the crowds I've seen at the restaurant, they have a willing audience while they continue to find their groove. And improve a bit I hope they do. Because with a bit more practice, it'd be a highly recommendable restaurant, a worthy home for a talented chef.
Lunch near Penn Station doesn't have to be as bad as you think.
It can be sweet, meaty, buttery, salty; nutty or funky—the nuance of flavor in prosciutto di Parma is remarkable. But the process of making it couldn't be simpler: ham, salt, and air. Well, maybe simple isn't the best term. Meat-massaging, horse bones, firebrands, and a whole lot more: we head behind the scenes to see how prosciutto di Parma gets made.
Fall means sweaters and scarves, pumpkin spice lattes and apple pie—and, for bartenders, an opportunity to rework their cocktail lists. We asked some of our favorite bartenders: What's your favorite cocktail ingredient to work with in the fall?
In this week's mailbag we get a question from another critic asking for tips and tricks of the trade.
Anyone who frequents drinking establishments, no matter how classy, is bound to see some questionable behavior. But given how much time they spend behind the bar, bartenders see the worst of it. We asked bartenders across the country: What's the worst behavior you've ever witnessed at a bar?
What neighborhood bars also serve great food? From chili-drenched burgers to commendable biscuits, some answers after the jump.
Perhaps the best thing about whisk(e)y is its diversity; between ryes and bourbons, Scotches and more, there's an enormous range of the brown spirits. We asked bartenders from around the country: What's your favorite whiskey, and how do you drink it? Here's what they had to say.
This week on Ask the Critic: birthday cake delivery for a discriminating birthday girl.
Barrel-aged cocktails have been popping up at high-end bars for quite some time, but no two barrel-aged cocktails are the same. We've seen plenty of Negronis and Old Fashioneds, but some bartenders have been getting a lot more creative. We asked some of our favorite bartenders: What's the best barrel-aged cocktail you've made?
Here are 9 Brooklyn restaurants with superior cocktails—go for a drink, or go for a meal, or the best option: both.
In this week's mailbag we meet a Manhattanite couple looking to get their toes wet in Brooklyn's dining scene. Where should they go? Our tasting tour herein.
If you've ordered takeout from a Chinese restaurant in your life, you've probably either seen or tasted Kung Pao chicken. And I'll admit that it's a dish I've loved and still enjoy. But the Westernized version is missing the key ingredient that is the star of the authentic Sichuan version, known more commonly as Gong Bao chicken: Sichuan peppercorns. It's their unique, mouth-numbing effect that gives the dish its spicy, warming quality.
When you saw the S'mOreos in our roundup of 14 Things To Make with Oreos, did you think, "Man, if only I could watch an animated gif of a S'mOreos being squished down over and over again for eternity..."? Well, so did we. So did we.
The fine editors at Serious Eats asked me, a 15+ year Dublin bartender, to opine on the best ways to imbibe in my city. This guide is intended for newcomers to Dublin and should give you a very rough idea of where to go and what to drink (whilst simultaneously preventing you from coming to harm on your first night). What happens after that is your own business: I take no responsibility for your safety, wellbeing, personal finances, romantic entanglements, hangovers, the stock market or anything else that happens while you're here. If you go home with stories to tell, well, then you've got the idea.
Let's talk about Restaurant Week. If you don't dine out often, or if you're used to thinking of New York restaurants as prohibitively expensive, it can seem like a great deal. But in the New York of 2012, it's possible to get an excellent 3-course meal for $35 (the Restaurant Week rate) any day of the year. Here are 20 suggestions.
This list rounds up some of the most traditional, classically Brazilian dishes. They are basic dishes that hail from all over: the Northeastern area of the country, the Amazonian jungles, the quick take-away shops in Sao Paulo.
My original plan was ratatouille, one of my absolute favorite seasonal meals. I picked up eggplant, zucchini, tomato, and set about finding a recipe. The problem is, I'm already quite fond of this one and couldn't find another that excited me in the same way. Luckily, I came across a recipe that uses all of the above vegetables, then adds some chickpeas and bell peppers. How could that be bad?
On the Serious Eats calendar, you'll see a big, fat star on November 1st. Why? That's when the Serious Eats book comes out—and we can't wait to share it with all of you.
Few have attempted to try all 33 different flavors of cheesecake at the Cheesecake Factory; fewer have succeeded without medical assistance. But we've boldly gone where no others have gone before.
When it comes to the Bronx, everyone talks about Arthur Avenue. But few know that there are some tasty options for munching near the Bronx Zoo—aside from the standard, often underwhelming Italian-American sit-downs over in Fordham-Belmont. From roti in Allerton to Albanian burek on Arthur Avenue and Yemeni food in Van Nest, there are plenty of interesting options. So if you're heading up to the Bronx to hang with the gorillas and the giraffes this summer, make sure to check out our guide to what's worth eating close by first.
A first look at the vendors at the Brooklyn Flea's new food market, Smorgasburg.
When I heard that work was taking me to Dallas, I put out a note on various social networking sites, asking for a recommendation for a good burger. Several chains were mentioned, but just one local joint came to the surface: Twisted Root Burger Company.
It's hard work, but someone had to do it: hunt down the best falafel sandwich in New York. What makes it the best? Falafel with crispy shells and tender interiors, not too dry, with a good internal balance of chickpea, parsley, and spice; pita that's fresh-tasting and delicious; sauces and toppings that add to the total package. Here's the Top 7, ending with our winner—the best falafel in New York.
Rich Torrisi and Mario Carbone, chef-owners of the proudly Italian-American Torrisi Italian Specialties, prove in their recently-launched dinner service that their understanding of serious food extends far beyond red sauce. Having eaten the insanely good sandwiches and side dishes at Torrisi for lunch a number of times, I thought that when we walked through the door at Torrisi for dinner, we were going to find elevated southern Italian red-sauce specialties—something like what the Frankies, Frank Castronovo and Frank Falcinelli, do so very well at Frankie's 457 and their other ventures. That would have been good enough for me. But dinner at Torrisi Italian Specialties is a culinary and gustatory tour de force.
New York's never been a great pie town. We have lots of great baked goods and lots of talented pastry chefs, but somehow our pies have never made it onto my nationwide pie honor roll. But with artisanally inspired handmade food in Brooklyn appearing at every corner and market, and the borough's do-it-yourself food culture growing ever-larger, we knew that a pie culture couldn't be far behind. Pies 'N Thighs started it, and now to pie lover's rescue come two pie companies—Four and Twenty Blackbirds and First Prize Pies.
Bread baskets are one of the greatest pleasures of dining out. Have you ever eaten a bread basket that was so delicious you couldn't stop eating it? Or one that even out-shined your actual meal? We have—and since New York City is a bastion of the impressive bread basket, we set out to determine our favorites.
If you asked me ten years ago if I would ever consider becoming a vegetarian, my answer would have been, "Hell no," followed by a string of surprisingly vicious obscenities. You might have cried. And I wouldn't have felt bad about it afterward. But dishes like this West African Vegetable Stew are just as filling and flavorful as meaty ones. Healthy as hell and simple to make, it possesses a wonderful sweet heat and heartiness.
[Photos: Carey Jones, Patrick Gorman] Every now and then, when we write about a place that's managed to stay on the edge of the media spotlight, we get a few angry emails. Well, we get the appreciative ones first—"This...
After my first fast-food foray, the Mac Snack Wrap, Serious Eats asked me to compare Burger King's new XT sandwich and McDonald's Angus Burger. I was ecstatic about a second chance to review products from two of our nation's iconic chains. But how do you taste a freshly, um, manufactured Burger King burger next to a McDonald's Angus and not have the contest be biased towards the home restaurant? Solution: home and away games, Champion's League-style.
Any food lover traveling to Paris could easily spend weeks, months, or years gobbling up all the serious eats the City of Lights has to offer. From the brasseries, boulangeries, the bistros, and beyond, it's almost too much to take in. So we decided to turn to our friend David Lebovitz to get a handle on a manageable bite of the France's capital city — its baked goods.
Rendang are dishes that are as integral to Malaysian cookery as laksas or satays. A rendang is a dish of meat stewed slowly in a coconut-curry liquid. Aromatic pastes are added in the beginning. As the meat stews in the paste and coconut milk mixture, the liquid reduces until only the oils of the coconut milk remain. To finish, the meat is lightly browned in the remaining coconut oil. The resulting dish is intensely flavorful and tender yet crisp and sticky on the outside with bits of browned aromatics.
Bowls received thumbs-up all around, thanks to the saffron-infused broth and bursts of fresh lemon and cilantro in this Moroccan-Style Chickpea Soup. It's similar to Harira soup, a Moroccan dish traditionally served during Ramadan, which I would eat on any holiday.
Not to be confused with the other two inferior Ali's Roti Shops in Brooklyn, Ali's Trinidad & Tobago Roti Deli Grocery in Bed-Stuy serves what are probably the best doubles ($1.25) this side of Trinidad. For a quarter of the cost of a Di Fara slice, you get a sweet and spicy chickpea curry that's flavored with tamarind and sandwiched between two disks of turmeric-scented deep-fried, naan-like bread known as "bara."
There are few food smells quite as hypnotic as the Cinnabon smell. You know it. At just about any mall food court, airport, or train station, it's there lingering, taunting you. But after 25 years, the Cinnabon counter is making room for a new dessert—and it doesn't even have an addictive aroma. The cupcake.
What makes a really good roasted chicken sandwich? Really good roasted chicken. That's what you'll find in the pollo hero ($6.50) at Milanes, a Dominician lunch counter in Chelsea.