Seasons 52- Sweet Tooth Satisfied

I’ve been told that the desserts at Seasons 52 were pretty scrumptious. I had the chance to sample some at Lord and Taylor’s “A Taste of Garden City” event. They enticed me enough that I made it a point to visit the restaurant to sample some other dishes. I had the opportunity to eat there this week and, in a nutshell, the other menu options I tried did not fall {too} short of the desserts’ reputation. 

The restaurant is located in the busy area of Roosevelt Field Mall but is enough on the outskirts that you don’t feel like you are “at the mall.” There’s a large, welcoming bar and live music. The Piano Man who was playing when I was there actually resembled Billy Joel and played a good variety of tunes. 

My dinner dates and I started out with some wine- each of us choosing something different. The waiter brought each bottle to our table and we tasted our selections before we committed to the glass. We were all pleased with our first choice and decided to stick with them. I tried a South African wine that I enjoyed so much, I will likely order some online. 

I love how Seasons 52 puts an emphasis on seasonally inspired ingredients. Each dish is less than 475 calories so you don’t have to feel too bad about dining out. We decided to taste a few things instead of ordering separate entrees. The blackened steak and blue cheese flatbreads were decent but I would try a different one next time. The warm California golden beets salad was so delicious that we housed three of them. Carmelized brussel sprouts with crispy bacon did not disappoint. I would skip the lump crab, roasted shrimp and spinach stuffed mushrooms next time around.

The dessert menu was more of a dessert showcase. Rather than presenting us with a paper menu, our {smart} waiter brought over the actual desserts- not fair at all. Resistance was futile at this point with the desserts staring us right in the face- there for the taking. Each looked fab and tasted as good as it looked. They were in small glasses resembling little dessert “shots.” High points for presentation. Equally high for taste. We tried almost every one and concluded that meeting here one day just for dessert wouldn’t be such a bad idea. Do you think the 475 caloric limit is null and void when you consume almost every dessert on the menu?



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Road To The Chili Bowl 2015

Ready to get your chili on?? You know there’s a big event coming up on Sunday, February 1st… SUPERBOWL XLIX. But did you know there’s an even bigger event happening {close by} on Saturday, January 31st? Get ready for the… SUPER CHILI BOWL 2015!

Save the date folks. Gather your friends. Sharpen your tastebuds. Not only will YOU be tasting some of the most phenomenal chili you’ve ever had, but YOU (the tasters) will also be judging the contest. This will be one fun event you won’t want to miss! Plus, proceeds from this event will benefit the Hance Family Foundation

Here are some basic deets:

TO ENTER: We are now accepting chili entries. If you would like to enter your own chili in the Super Chili Bowl, just FB message or email us at InsideGardenCity@gmail.com with your contact information. 

TO TASTE: If you want to show your support for a great cause and come out for some awesome chili {plus beer or wine}, save the date! $10 per adult to taste, $5 per child. $5 additional for unlimited wine, beer or soda. 

WHEN: Saturday, January 31st. 1-3pm. Chili entrants arrive at 12:30.

WHERE: Capo Ristorante on Covert Ave., Floral Park (one block south of Matty’s Toys). 

More details to follow. Be there or be…

Gingerbread House Party- Run, Run as Fast as You Can

A Gingerbread man walks into a bar with a parrot on his shoulder. Bartender asks “Where did you get that from?” Parrot says “The bakery next door.”

If you’re tired of getting shut out of the Garden City Library’s Gingerbread House making program but visions of sugar plums are still dancing through your head, we’ve got good news for you. Inside Garden City is excited to tell you that there is finally another {local} option. And it’s going to be the most bumpin’, pumpin’ Gingerbread House Party you’ve ever been to!

On Sunday, December 21st,  from 11am-2pm, bring your children to Capo Ristorante on Covert Ave, just one block south from La Bella Bakery and Maddy’s Toys. Capo will be set up with all the fixins’ for some serious Gingerbread House-Making. Children will not only build their own gingerbread house but they’ll also enjoy a pasta dish or one of Capo’s {ultra-delish} panini and a drink. Think candy canes, Christmas music and lots of holiday fun. $15 per child.

And since the adults don’t want to be shut out either, Capo is hosting a Gingerbread House Party for grown-ups! On Tuesday, December 16th from 7:30-10:30pm, enjoy your own Gingerbread House plus wine and tapas. $35 per person. A great idea for a girls night out (think of it as the holiday version of a paint night) or grab your significant other for something different to do this season.

Seating is limited and reservations are required so run, run as fast as you can… (womp womp)… . 

Capo Ristorante is located at 49 Covert Ave in Floral Park, between Salisbury and Marshell Aves. Call 516-216-5177 to make a reservation for either or both events.

Thank you for reading http://www.InsideGardenCity.com. Please visit our Facebook page. 

Restaurant Sneak Peek

It’s time to take a step back from your daily hustle and bustle and start planning for the weekend. Woo Hoo! You might be thinking of going out to dinner and if so, you can view a few of our favorite local restaurants’ weekend menus and specials in one convenient spot. Take a look below and make your rezzies! 


REVEL offers Happy Hour every day from noon til 7pm. Draft beer, domestic bottles, selected wines, and well cocktails are only $5. Bar bites menu apps are 20% off. Read what Newsday says about Revel’s happy hour here

Also, Revel continues offering their LI Restaurant Week 3 course Prix Fixe Dinner @ $27.95 every Sun-Fri 4pm-10pm. 

Enjoy Beats & Eats every Thursday at Revel. This Thur, 12/4, features Astra from 92.3 AMP FM starting at 7pm. Meet Astra and catch DJ French spinning the best music all night long. Plus drink specials and complimentary admission- as always. 

835 Franklin Ave, Garden City(516) 246-9111



BK SWEENEY’S will have Ladies Night on Thursday night.
Saturday night- try their Famous Slow Roasted Prime Rib.
Sunday- enjoy Brunch from 11-3.
Monday-Friday from 4-7pm is Happy Hour. $6 appetizers. 
636 Franklin Ave, Garden City (516) 746-3075



Check out Capo’s specials for the upcoming weekend:

ANTIPASTI:
STUFFED ARTICHOKE $7
Our classic stuffed artichoke with a garlic wine sauce

CARTUCCHERIE FORMAGGIO $14.50
Mortadella, red wine salami, Sopressata, Asiago, Paive and 8 month aged hard sharp goat cheese

OYSTERS CAPOFELLA $11.50
Blue Point oysters with spinach, pancetta and gorgonzola

BROCOLI RABE E SALSICCIA $7.50
Our recipe broccoli rabe, sausage and gorgonzola cheese filled egg rolls

PASTA:
LINGUINI CON CALAMARI $16
Our fried calamari in a spicy cherry pepper tomato sauce

CAPRESE RAVIOLI $15.50
Ravioli with fresh mozzarella, tomato and basil with a roasted red pepper cream sauce and balsamic reduction

SPINACHI FETTUCCINI CON GAMBERONI E PETTINI $17.50
Fresh made spinach fettucini with shrimp, scallops, pepper flakes, garlic and oil

GNOCCHI CON RAGU DI BISTECCA $16
Chianti braised short rib ragu with our house made parmesan gnocchi

SECONDI:
PETTINI PAN SCATTO $22.50
Jumbo scallops, pan seared with a Pinot Grigio sauce and grape tomato, with brussel sprouts and sweet potato

OSSO BUCCO $23.50
Chianti braised veal osso bucco with and smashed red potatoes broccoli rabe

MAIALE FUNGI MARSALA $19
Sauteed pork loin with a mushroom and Marsala wine sauce, roasted brussel sprouts and sweet potato mashed

BRONZINO PICATTA $21.50
Sauteed Bronzino fillet with a lemon caper and wine sauce, served with broccoli rabe and smashed red potato

49 Covert Ave, Floral Park (516) 216-5177





PLANCHA

Dry Aged Pinchos with Tomato Jam and Mayo Tapenade $7

Roasted Pear with Whipped Ricotta, Hazelnuts and Brown Butter. $6

Email us at insidegardencity@gmail.com if you would like your favorite restaurant’s specials to be added. 

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Capo Ristorante to the {Thanksgiving} Rescue

Thanksgiving Day is a mere 4 days away. Considering that the weekend is coming to a close, it’s more like 3 days away. And since you really can’t count Thanksgiving Day as a preparation day because you’ll be at the GC Turkey Trot in the morning, you really have just two days left to prepare. Are you ready?

Ok, so maybe you’ve been dreading going to the grocery store to prepare for your Thanksgiving dinner like so many others. I’m not judging- hey, I’m one of the procrastinators too. But if you have been putting it off, I’m sure you have a good reason, like you want to avoid the crowded stores, the long lines, the feeling of chaos or the crowded stores. Or perhaps you didn’t really volunteer to host Thanksgiving dinner but instead someone {lovingly} volunteered you. Or maybe you just don’t enjoy cooking very much. Whatever the reason, I’ve got just the out… I mean reasonable solution… you’ve been looking for.



Capo Ristorante on Covert Ave has come to the rescue! They’ve prepared a great Thanksgiving catering menu at a really great price which serves 10-12 people. It’s filled with fantastic choices and will take all of the work out of Thanksgiving dinner for you. All you have to do is pop the bird in the oven (or the backyard fryer) and the rest is done. And you know how much I love the food at Capo- so I’m sure you won’t be disappointed. Check out the menu below and call them at 516-216-5177 to place your order. You can thank me later : )


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DAVIDsTEA: {A Spot for} A Spot Of Tea

When I venture outside of Garden City for shopping, particularly to the Roosevelt Field Mall, I’m usually not thrilled about it. This particular day, however, I was pleasantly surprised- might I even say… thrilled with my experience that I might find myself driving east on Old Country Road a little more frequently.

Inside Garden City was invited for a tea education and introduction to DAVIDsTEA. DAVIDsTEA is a Canadian company with over 100 stores in Canada and they’re now expanding into the American market. The Roosevelt Field store is situated on the main level right near Microsoft- a good location in my opinion- easy to find and pretty close to the outskirts of the mall so I could avoid the center of the mall and all it’s chaos.


I’m not a big tea person, but I enjoy it, so I headed over to check it out and boy was I glad I did. When you enter DAVIDsTEA, you immediately drink in (no pun intended) the chic, well organized set-up. Bright lights, a clean look, lots of tea paraphernalia and a huge (I mean huge) wall of tea. They have over 150 flavors and blends. I was getting excited.

I met two employees- Erika and Deborah- who were both friendly, helpful and enthusiastic about tea. And very willing to educate if you are interested! Part of DAVIDsTEA philosophy is to make the tea experience so user-friendly that it easily becomes a part of your lifestyle. From the start, I was impressed with their tea canisters. Each was topped with a sniffer lid- a lid with a small pocket in it which held a sample of the tea. This let me smell the tea without  sticking my nose (and germs) into the whole canister to inhale the aroma. This kept the tea safe and clean inside. Imagine hundreds of people per day coming in and smelling tea without these little dividers? Not so much.

Erika showed me some teas that had tiny candies inside for flavor (and they looked super cute as well), like teeny red candy canes or orange pumpkins amidst the leaves. Pretty cute- especially if you’re giving it as a gift. Speaking of, there were plenty of cute tea gifting ideas. I’m sure you’re familiar with the chocolate Advent calendars that come out for Christmas? DAVIDsTEA has them called the 24 Days of Tea with a different tea for each day instead of chocolate. There’s also 12 Teas of Christmas, The Night Before Christmas, The Winter Collection and 8 Days of Tea sampler tea sets. Adorbs and festively packed to make perfect gifts.



If you’re buying for a tea novice, or if you yourself are a tea novice but like the idea of loose teas and want to start dabbling in them, DAVIDsTEA make it easy. You can buy a small box of tea filters which are basically empty tea bags. You put a scoop of tea in them, cinch them up and you’ve got your very own home-made tea bag. Now all you have to do is dunk it in some hot water. Easy enough. And the bags are biodegradable and chlorine-free, unlike traditional 
teabags.

DAVIDsTEA goes green whenever they can and that’s pretty often. For instance, the tea brewed at the stores each day gets composted at the day’s end. Also, their “plastic” cups, which look like all other plastic cups you see around, for cool drinks are made of corn (yes, corn!) and are completely biodegradable. You can’t put a hot drink in them because they’ll melt, but I was certainly impressed to learn that DAVIDsTEA is this eco-friendly. Did I mention that if you bring in your own container, you get a discount on the tea leaves? Plus, all of the plastic they use is BPA-free too!

As far as cool drinks, beside the traditional iced teas, DAVIDsTEA has tea pops. These are deliciously flavored iced tea drinks- you select the tea you want, they use a soda stream to carbonate it and add sweetener (if you like), over ice. The result- a refreshing, natural alternative to sugary sweet summer drinks. I am happy to say I found my new warm weather drink!

The massive color coded tea wall was impressive. They have a lot of interesting flavors (like sugar plum forest) and blends. For the super serious (not me), they also have less common teas such as bai hao yin zhen and sencha ashikubo. DAVIDsTEA boasts over 70 organic teas and interestingly, when preparing organic tea they use a specific organic steeper and spoon so as not to cross-contaminate with the non-organic teas. Pretty conscientious, huh?

There’s also a special selection of Garden to Cup teas. These teas come straight from the source- small tea estates where the leaves are bought directly and put on the shelves as quickly as possible in order to preserve their freshness. Blue Mountain Twirl is one of these gems- a unique green tea from an estate in India. 


You’ll find lots of great gift ideas here and a few treats for yourself too such as tea pots, an assortment of tea travel mugs, tea latte mugs, matcha sets and my fave: what DAVIDsTEA calls “the perfect tea cup” (I now own one and I must say… it is pretty perfect).

DAVIDsTEA impressed me with their tea, their service and their dedication to leaving a green footprint. I’m on my way to becoming a “tea person” and may have just found my happy place, at least inside Roosevelt Field Mall.

http://www.davidstea.com

Garden City Restaurants Participating: LI Restaurant Week is Here!

It’s that time again! Long Island Restaurant week is upon us and you don’t have to travel far to enjoy it. Great restaurants right in Garden City are offering awesome deals and specials on dinner! Beginning November 2nd and lasting through November 9th, here’s a run-down of all the participating restaurants in Garden City (plus a few just outside GC) and what they’re offering:



BK Sweeney’s Uptown Grille 516-746-3075. 636 Franklin Ave, GC. 

$27.95 for a three course meal. Their Old Fashioned Sauerbraten and Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream sounds delicious! Click here for the full menu. One exception- on Saturday the price fixed menu is only available from 4-7pm. 



Akbar Restaurant (516) 357-5163. 2 South St, GC

If you haven’t tried Akbar yet, they have delicious options on their menu such as Samosas and Chicken or Lamb Masala. See their full Restaurant Week menu here.



Calogero’s (516) 294-2922. 919 Franklin Ave, GC

Calogero’s has been a longtime GC fave but have you tried their pizza yet? It’s not to be missed… and neither are there Restaurant Week specials. Try their pan roasted fresh mozzarella appetizer with grilled tomatoes, arugula salad and yellow roasted peppers, then move onto the basil crusted salmon with roasted potatoes and fall vegetables for an entree followed up by a gelato ice cream sandwich- a chocolate chip ice cream sandwich made with hazelnut ice cream. Yum! Click here for their website but you’ll have to call for the Restaurant Week menu. 



Novita Wine Bar & Trattoria (516) 739-7660. 860 Franklin Ave, GC

Novita is offering a three course meal for $27.95 with lots of great options, like Lobster Sliders, Frutti di Mare Fra Diavolo, Rogatoni ala Vodka, Nutella Tiramisu, Zeppoli, Cannoli and more! Their special menu for Restaurant Week can be found here.



Polo Steakhouse at the Garden City Hotel (516) 877-9385. 45 Seventh St., GC

Three course prixe-fixe dinner menu for $27.95 per person with yummy choices such as filet mignon with steak fries and the most delicious chocolate ganache cake with warm chocolate sauce ever.  Click here for the menu.


Revel Restaurant & Bar 516-246-9111. 835 Franklin Ave, GC

Revel is offering a three course price fixe menu for $27.95 with lots of choices! Here are a few of their entree options: Ricotta Gnocchi, Seafood Fra Diavolo (+$5), Wild Alaskan King Salmon, Prime Angus Burger. Sounds good, doesn’t it? Find their menu here

Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas (516) 228-5400. The Gallery at Westbury, 1002 Old Country Road, GC.

Spuntino is offering five courses for only $27.95 per person! Risotto balls, Braised Wild Boar Bruschetta, Rocotta Cheescake, House-made Doughnuts are just a few of the yummy options! See their menu here.

Waterzooi (516) 877-2177. 850 Franklin Ave, GC.

Another fabulous three course menu for $27.95. Think Baked French Onion Soup, Lobster Bisque, Beer Braised Short Rib Sliders, Mussels prepared in a variety of ways like the more traditional Provencal or the more adventurous Lucifer (Buffalo Style), Filet of Sole, Bistro Burger and many other choices. Click here to see their Restaurant Week menu.

Here’s a few options outside of GC:


Park Place Restaurant & Bar (516) 775-9004. 41 Covert Ave, Floral Park.

Park Place is also offering a three course prix fixe for only $27.95. Some of their more interesting items include Fried Chicken and Waffles, Braised Short Rib Roll, Lobster BLT (+$6), Blackened Chicken Pasta and Funnel Oreos or a Belgian Waffle Sundae for dessert- among other things. Find their full Restaurant Week Menu here.


Eric’s Italian Bistro (516) 280-5675. 70 E. Old Country Rd, Mineola. 

Eric’s tempting menu options include Roasted Corn Chowder, Mussels with White Wine and Garlic, Vitello alla Marsala or Parmigiana, Chicken Scarpariello alla Eric, Roasted LI Duckling (+$7.95) and many more! Their Restaurant Week menu is featured here.

Long Island Restaurant Week is a great chance to try a new restaurant you’ve been thinking about or try a new dish from an old fave. Most importantly, it’s a great opportunity to support our local restaurants and have a fab meal at the same time. Sounds like a win win!


Happy Eating! 


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Avellino’s Voted Best Pizza in Garden City : The Lowdown on the {Pizza} Showdown

What started as a quest of two people to find the best pizza around town became a true “pizza sensation.” Thirteen pizzerias were invited to attend. Twelve judges were invited to taste. And the preparation was underway.

The coveted prize.


Pizzerias were notified of their nominations and provided with the contest rules. Judges were given instructions, tasting rules, an explanation of the scoring system and some tasting tips.

Thirteen pizzerias were asked to deliver a pie at 5pm in an unnamed, unmarked box to preserve the integrity of the “blind” tasting. The pie should be cut into 16 slices.

One contestant forgot to cut their pie into 16 slices. Tsk tsk. 


At time of delivery, pizzas were accepted and assigned a random alphabetical letter. Toothpicks with printed letters were then placed into each slice of each pie to prevent confusion of pizza slices once they were removed from the box. Names on the boxes (if visible) were quickly covered.


Before the day of the Pizza Showdown arrived, judges were educated on the scoring system and its categories (crust, sauce, cheese and overall). They were also provided with rules such as- Each pizza must be tasted at least once and labeled toothpicks must not be removed to avoid confusing the pizzas. Lastly, the judges were advised to be decisive and consistent, keep scores private, and most importantly- arrive hungry but not ravenous so as not to confuse really liking something with being overly hungry.


The event went forward with lots of energy and spirit. The judges were dedicated and took their job quite seriously. The pizzerias were equally enthusiactic- some more confident than others (“Just give us the prize; don’t bother having the contest”) but all in good fun. And they wanted to Bring It. The first annual Inside Garden City 2014 Pizza Showdown was ON.


Pizzas began arriving at 4:50 (Plum Tomatoes, Umberto’s GC South, Avellino’s). Some arrived exactly on the nose at 5:00 (Rustica and Louie’s). A few arrived at 5:05 (Grimaldi’s, Gino’s). Calagero’s arrived late (5:30)… or on second thought… could that have been a clever strategy to show up with a hot pie just as the others had gone cold? On the topic of strategy, Garden City Pizza sent appetizers along with their pie. Nice touch but that did not weigh into the competition. 


The delivery men enthusiastically cheered on their own pies (“This is your winner” or “I’ve got the best pizza right here!”). Gotta love the enthusiasm. I was impressed that Rustica cleverly folded their pizza box inside out to successfully hide their name. No one else had thought of that (even us). Big kudos to them for thinking “outside the box”. Womp womp.

There was no dilly-dallying. As soon as the pies were randomly labeled, tasting began quickly in an effort to eat them hot. And taste we did. The room was quiet and the tone was serious. The judges (all local GC residents btw) took their work seriously. There was tasting, palate cleansing (with beer, wine and water), re-tasting, note-taking and very little talking. This was serious business and the judges obviously wanted to do their best.


At the conclusion, scores were privately and carefully tallied, checked and rechecked. The pizzerias and their corresponding random alphabetical letters were then revealed. Until this point, the judges had been completely unaware of the contestants.

RESULTS:

Avellino’s won BEST OVERALL PIZZA. Second place went to Rustica and third place went to Grimaldi’s. Congratulations to all of the winners!


The winners of the subcategories were as follows:
The winner of best crust was Grimaldi’s, just slightly ahead of Avellino’s.
The winner of best sauce was Plum Tomatoes, narrowly beating Rustica.
The winner of best cheese was a tie between Calagero’s and Grimaldi’s.

A number of pizzerias were neck-and-neck in this competition. For instance, it was a tight race for best sauce with Plum Tomatoes, Rustica, Avellino’s and Grimaldi’s (in that order) all vying for the number one spot. And while Grimaldi’s won tops for crust, Avellino’s was a very close second, with Calagero’s, Plum Tomatoes and Gino’s nipping closely at their heels. In fact, Calagero’s, Plum Tomatoes and Gino’s all tied for third place in crust. But when it came to cheese, Calagero’s and Grimaldi’s blew the competition away. However, it was Avellino’s that gave the most solid performance throughout and pulled ahead for good down the stretch.


One could speculate as to why four of the thirteen pizzerias were no-shows on the day of the competition: Giaccone’s of Mineola, Umberto’s of NHP, V.I.Pizza and Gallery Pizza both of GC. Perhaps they didn’t want to accept the challenge because they didn’t think that their pie would win, perhaps they simply forgot, or perhaps they chose to rest on their laurels (ahem, you know who you are). Whatever the reason, they were missed. Hey guys- there’s always next year.

Speaking of, Inside Garden City will be having the second Pizza Showdown next year. We’ll meet again and who knows what may happen. Will Avellino’s defend the title? Will another dedicated pizzeria take what they learned from these results, tweak their pie and steal the red sauce colored belt? Will a dark horse emerge to prominence? Time will tell. Until then, thank you to all of the pizzerias who enthusiastically brought their A game and thank you to the judges who selflessly abandoned their diets and hit the gym double duty.

Please support all of the contestants and remember- even bad pizza is good pizza!

Here’s the contact info for all of the participants:

Avellino’s- 279 Nassau Blvd, GC South. (516) 307-1313
Rustica- 1 Nassau Blvd, GC South. (516) 292-2197
Grimaldi’s- 980 Franklin Ave, GC. (516) 294-6565
Calagero’s- 919 Franklin Ave, GC. (516) 294-2922
Plum Tomatoes- 228 Old Country Rd. Mineola. (516) 248-6390
Gino’s- 1113 Jericho Tpke, New Hyde Park (516) 488-1366
Louie’s- 39 Old Country Rd, Carle Place. (516) 248-2676
Umberto’s GC South- 361 Nassau Blvd, GC (516) 481-1279
Garden City Pizza- 670 Franklin Ave, GC (516) 294-2929

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Best Pizza in Garden City 2014- The Results Are In!

The First Annual Inside Garden City Pizza Showdown took place Sunday, October 26th and the results are in! Nine pizzerias delivered and 12 tasters judged. A more in-depth analysis of the competition will be published tomorrow. Here’s a quick synopsis of the results:


First Place: AVELLINO’S, 279 Nassau Blvd, GC South

Second Place: Rustica, 1 Nassau Blvd, GC 

Third Place: Grimaldi’s, 980 Franklin Ave, GC


SUBCATEGORY WINNERS:

Best Crust: Grimaldi’s

Best Sauce: Plum Tomatoes

Best Cheese: A tie between Calagero’s and Grimaldi’s

The competitors included:
Avellino’s
Calagero’s
Garden City Pizza
Gino’s
Grimaldi’s
Louie’s
Plum Tomatoes
Rustica
Umberto’s (GC South)

Four others were asked to participate but did not deliver a pie: Gallery Pizza, Giaccone’s, V.I.Pizza, Umberto’s of New Hyde Park. Stay tuned for a more in-depth analysis of the outcome. 

Congratulations to Avellino’s and thank you to all entrants!

Sur La Table? Yes, Please!

Where can you get a fantastic meal, with fantastic wine, shared with a group of friends- cooked by… yourselves? {And trust me, it will still taste good.} Sur La Table in Manhasset!


Having never been before I didn’t know what to expect. Basically all I knew was we were to cook the meal ourselves. I was game. Tucked in next to Vera Wang in Americana Manhasset and underneath Sur La Table’s beautiful culinary store, hides a beautiful professional kitchen fully equipped with every cooking essential you can imagine. For the anti-chefs… have no fear because it’s also staffed with a few professionals to guide you along your culinary adventure.


We arrived at Sur La Table around 7:30pm and were greeted by Chef Jordan Carfagno, his assistants and an attractive table of tasty hors d’oeuvres to get us started. We supplied the wine and they supplied the glasses and everything else. 


First we were given a brief introduction of what we would be cooking- Spanish tapas tonight. No complaints here! We were then whisked over (pun intended) over to the professional grade work stations and stovetops which were already prepared and waiting for us with the proper pans, tools and ingredients for our meal. We cooked under the guidance of Chef Jordan and enjoyed our wine throughout the meal preparation. Of course, the chatting and drinking took over occasionally and our group had to get back on track, but all in all, I’d say we did a great job. Chef Jordan instructed us step by step but we did the majority of the work. Everyone was involved and excited. With a delicious menu planned, fresh ingredients set up and ready to go, the right environment and friends- how could you not have a good time?


On our menu included a delicious seafood, chicken and chorizo paella, garlic-seared shrimp with sherry, chorizo-stuffed baby red potatoes and my favorite- dates stuffed with goat cheese, wrapped in Serrano ham and drizzled with a sherry reduction. Chef Jordan and his staff took care of setting out the prepared food when it was ready while we all headed upstairs to Sur La Table’s amazing cooking store that basically has everything you could ever want in your kitchen. After a little shopping came the best part. Having worked up an appetite, we were ready to sit back and enjoy the product of our labor! The meal was fabulous and there was plenty of it as well.


I highly recommend Sur La Table for a night out with friends or a birthday celebration. You will leave with some delicious recipes (perhaps some kitchen goodies if your shopping was successful), more cooking skills and knowledge than you came in with and the experience of turning out a delicious, professional quality meal with your friends. Food, wine and friends. Really- who could ask for more?


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