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Can Paul Liebrandt Make New York Safe for Molecular Gastronomy?

The details aren’t yet clear, but it seems that one way or another, Paul Liebrandt will soon be leading a restaurant in New York. (Snack asserts that it will be Montrachet, but Vogue’s Jeffrey Steingarten tells us that it will be a new venture with Drew Nieporent; the two are searching for a space.) Add to that the launch of Sam Mason’s Tailor, the buzz around Jordan Kahn’s work at Varietal, and the mainstreaming of tropes like foams, and it looks like molecular gastronomy will have another shot with New York diners.

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On the Machismo of Cooking: Competitive Eaters Make for Macho TV

Cooking is now an essential part of modern machismo, or so men’s magazines seem to feel. [NYDN] The International Federation of Competitive Eaters inks a deal with Spike TV to keep their “gurgitators,” including NY locals Crazy Legs Conti and Tim “Eater X” Janus, on the airwaves year-round. [Page Six] Is it possible to open a restaurant on the D.L. in New York City? In the final chapter of this three-part series, the media weighs in. [Snack]

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Inside the Troubled Russian Tea Room; Meyer and Others on Media Scrutiny

The fullest account yet of the debacle that is the new Russian Tea Room. Gary Robins comes out looking far more sinned against than sinning, and the owner comes out looking like a jerk. [NYP] A blue-ribbon panel including Mario Batali, Bill Telepan, and Danny Meyer study the question of whether it’s possible to open a restaurant under the radar. The near unanimous answer is no. Will Goldfarb suggests one way: “Do it in Queens.” [Snack] Pichet Ong formerly of Spice Market is the first of the hot pastry chefs to open his own restaurant, the eponymous P*ong. Rivals Sam Mason and Jehangir Mehta (formerly of Aix) are close behind. [NYS] Related: The Launch [Grub Street]

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