Pittsburgh's Spork Refreshes
The ownership group of Andrew Tepper, Chef Christian Frangiadis and GM Sean Enright of Spork in Pittsburgh have announced a refresh of their popular modern American small plates restaurant following its New Year’s Eve service on December 31. The restaurant will close for renovations and service upgrades from January 1-7. Spork is expected to re-open on January 8, 2020 with a more elegant style of service and cuisine, while keeping the family feeling that Spork has become known for in Pittsburgh.
“The refresh provides a focused opportunity to enhance the sophistication of the Spork dining experience while maintaining the familial vibe that our customers appreciate,” said Enright. “We are always listening to what our loyal clientele love most about Spork and want to reflect what is most important to them as we start a new year.”
Earlier in 2019, the management team conducted a research and development trip to Mexico to identify additional service elements that would play a role at Spork. A captain-style service will include all servers on the floor, resulting in a higher standard of service. A vigorous training program led by manager Richard Stewart, a veteran on the Pittsburgh Restaurant scene, will take place during the restaurant’s closure. Special attention will be given to education around wine service, tableside service, and spirit service as well as the new menu. Olivia Lindstrom will continue to lead the wine program with Wes Burdette overseeing the bar offerings.
“Our goal is to have the staff to be every element so they can properly convey the entire Spork experience with our guests,” says Stewart.
New, sleek and sophisticated black on black uniforms with maroon aprons for servers and bar staff will showcase a classic restaurant style. The bartenders’ uniforms will reflect the servers with maroon bar aprons while the new menu redesign will include a fold-out design and quite a few new items.
Spork will continue to offer the unique dining experience and interesting menu elements that initially put the restaurant on the map of the Pittsburgh dining scene, including in-house fermentation and pickling techniques as well as up-leveled dishes like the popular canard à la presse. The overarching goal is to maintain the comfortable, friendly feeling that guests have come to enjoy since the restaurant’s opening, while bringing it to the next level. Interior and exterior painting will lighten and brighten the space while new art and lighting installations provide more elements of interest and more visible signage outside of Spork’s doors.
ABOUT SPORK: Spork is a chef-owned, modern American small plates restaurant in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, serving dinner Monday through Saturday. Executive Chef Christian Frangiadis leads a robust team that makes pastas, cures meats, bakes pastries and more entirely from scratch, every day. The menu at Spork changes nightly, based on what is in season at the farmer’s market or on-hand at the butcher, to showcase the diverse bounty of Western Pennsylvania produce. Seasonal craft cocktails, unique wines from around the world and local drafts are available, as well. Spork is located at 5430 Penn Avenue, at the corner of Penn Avenue and South Graham Street. Hours of operation are 5:00 pm – 10:00 pm Monday through Thursday and 5:00 pm – 11:00 pm Friday and Saturday. For more information, please visit Spork’s website. http://sporkpittsburgh.com/.
December 29 Episode
OTM is On the Road, The December 29 program will be Available at 8AM US Eastern Time
On the Menu for December 22 now onlne
OTM is landed safely from our Xmas Journey. Happy Holidays to All Our Listeners
Pittsburgh's Loss is Jersey City's Gain
Congrats to Rick Easton! Grub Street's Underground Gourmet rated Bread & Salt , in Jersey City, NJ, as NYC best new pizza.
Celebrate Piedmont Truffle Season at Pittsburgh's DiAnoia’s Eatery'
WHAT: DiAnoia’s Eatery's beloved dinner series continues with a 5-course dinner inspired by the Italian Piemonte region. The dinner includes wine pairings hand-selected by Chef Dave and Chef Justin during their recent visit to Italy. Highlights of the menu include Barolo wine braised beef cheeks and two housemade pastas. A vegetarian option is available. It is priced at $225 per person including wine pairings, tax and gratuity.
WHEN: 6-9 p.m. Sunday, December 8th, 2019
WHERE: DiAnoia’s Eatery 2549 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15222
WHY: Chef Dave recently visited the Piemonte region of Italy for the first time and was able to enjoy the beginning of their truffle season. He felt the holidays would be a perfect time to celebrate this region and particularly their famous and rare white truffle “tartufi.” This highly sought after tartufi is featured in each of the dinner’s five courses.
FOR BOOKING and more information: https://www.dianoiaseatery.com/product/truffle_dinner/
2020 Guide for Spain
2020 Michelin Guide includes an astonishing total of 12 for Martin Berasategui, Ola Martín Berasategui, in Bilbao, adding to the 3 Stars for his eponymous spot outside Bilbao, and Lasarte in Barcelona. Cenador de Amós, in Cantabria, joins the roster of 3 Star holders.
2020 Guide for Italy
Good News for Fans of Massimo Bottura, and a new 3 Star. Massimo's Osteria Franescana is known as a "tough ticket" OTM is fortumate to have lumched there more than once. Now there's a chance for more Massimo - his Florence place, Gucci Osteria, which opened in 2008.got its First Star in the 2020 GUide; The Guide also christened the first 3-Star in MIlano, namesake of Chef Enrico Bartolini.
Changing Chefs at Chicago's North Pond
After 20 Years, Bruce Sherman Turning Over Kitchen To Chef de Cuisine Tim Vidrio. Since taking over what was then a casual park café in 1999, Bruce Sherman has been the only executive chef North Pond has seen. Now, as 2019 draws to a close, Sherman is turning over the kitchen to his longtime chef de cuisine, Tim Vidrio. “It’s with mixed emotions for sure…back then, I couldn’t have dreamt of all we’d achieve here, and I’m so proud of what we’ve accomplished. The time feels right, there is a strong team in place and I look forward to seeing what the next twenty years bring – for the restaurant, and for me,” states Sherman. Under Sherman’s leadership, North Pond has been honored with many accolades, such as earning a Michelin star rating for seven consecutive years as well as multiple James Beard nominations, including a win for Sherman as Best Chef: Great Lakes (2012). While he’ll no longer be running the kitchen, he will, along with longtime business partner Richard Mott, remain a partner. “I want to thank Bruce for all he’s done here. He’s been a great chef, partner and friend and I understand his desire to start a new chapter. We will all miss him, and equally, we’re excited to see Tim grow into this role,” states Mott. Chef Sherman’s last day of service will be New Year’s Eve.
Vidrio joined the North Pond team in early 2011 and for the past three years has been chef de cuisine. Prior to joining North Pond, Vidrio worked his way through Chicagoland kitchens, including Le Francais, Moto, and NoMi at the Park Hyatt Hotel. He shares Sherman’s philosophy of respectfully and sustainably working with the best of the season, while maintaining close relationships with farmers, producers and growers. John Arents, who worked at North Pond some fifteen years ago, returns in December as Managing Partner/General Manager, and longtime GM Natalie Boschert will return from maternity leave in spring in an operations role. So while Sherman has molded North Pond’s culinary philosophy over the years, Vidrio has been executing that philosophy and no major changes to the cuisine style and level of service are anticipated.
There are some other changes coming soon though…in early spring, the restaurant will close several days for some updating. The most notable change will be the installation of a very large, dramatic skylight in the main dining room, along with new seating and tables and a new kitchen. Details will follow at a later date. North Pond serves dinner Wednesday -- Sunday beginning at 5:30 p.m.; Sunday brunch service begins at 10:30 a.m. Smoking is not permitted in North Pond. Valet parking is available on weekends at the corner of Lakeview and Deming Streets and reservations are recommended. For reservations or further information, please call 773.477.5845 or visit North Pond.
Thanksgiving Dinner from Pittsburgh's Spork Pit
Chef Christian Frangiadis is once more offering delectable pre-sale smoked turkeys from his custom smoker for Thanksgiving holiday through the Spork Pit Website. For $107+ tax, a 13-lb. spatchcocked turkey will be served with a quart of cranberry-pepita-sage stuffing and a quart of foie gras gravy. Guests can pick up hot turkeys on Thanksgiving from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. or cold, vacuum-sealed a day prior from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. In addition, a 12" eight-slice pumpkin pie can be ordered for $32.10. A few notes on the meal:
- The meal features fresh, hormone-free turkey from Strip District Meats. It will be brined for two days in rosemary-onion brine and then rubbed with smoked paprika, sage, white pepper, black pepper, red pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and dried mustard.
- Orders will be taken online (links coming soon) for turkeys through Sunday, November 24. Please let me know if you are interested in covering. I would also be delighted to share information on brine recipes for anyone doing at home preparation.
Bigger and Better Gelinaz, Worldwide on December 3
138 Restaurants, in 38 Countries- Wow!! Many of the World's Outstanding Chefs, 148 of them, will be participating, Get details & Tickets at https://gelinaz.com/.
And the Winners are - Wine Star Awards Announced
- Person of the Year – Linda Reiff, President & CEO, Napa Valley Vintners
- Lifetime Achievement – Francis Ford Coppola
- Philanthropy Award – The Bob and Marie Gallo Foundation
- Wine Executive of the Year – Bob Torkelson, President & CEO, Trinchero Family Estates
- Winemaker of the Year – Dave Phinney, Founder & Winemaker, Locations Wine
- Social Visionary of the Year – International Wineries for Climate Action (Jackson Family Wines and Familia Torres)
- Wine and Culture Award – Hampton Water (Gérard Bertrand, Jon Bon Jovi and Jesse Bongiovi)
- Innovator of the Year – Oregon Solidarity (King Estate, Willamette Valley Vineyards, Silvan Ridge Winery and The Eyrie Vineyards)
- American Winery of the Year – Bogle Vineyards, Clarksburg, CA
- European Winery of the Year – Tasca d’Almerita, Sicily, Italy
- New World Winery of the Year – Trapiche, Mendoza, Argentina
- Wine Region of the Year – Sonoma County, California
- Winery Experience of the Year – Viña Vik, Millahue, Chile
- Importer of the Year – Maisons Marques & Domaines USA Inc
- Sommelier / Beverage Director of the Year – Laura Maniec-Fiorvanti, Cofounder, Corkbuzz
- Retailer of the Year – Wine.com
- Spirit Brand / Distiller of the Year – Nonino
The winners will be honored at the 20th annual Wine Star Awards Dinner in San Francisco, California, at the Palace of Fine Arts on Monday, January 27th, 2020. To attend or RSVP please contact Jen Cortellini at email@example.com. To read in-depth profiles of the Wine Star Award winners, pick up the Best of Year Issue of Wine Enthusiast magazine hitting newsstands December 10th, 2019 or online at WineMag.com. To join the social conversation follow @WineEnthusiast on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook with the hashtag #WineStarAwards.
he 150th anniversary of Moët & Chandon Impérial Bru
From Napoleon Bonaparte’s rise to the emperor of France, Roger Federer’s status as the GOAT, Scarlett Johansson becoming the world’s highest paid actress, to Virgil Abloh’s ascent to the top of the fashion industry, Moët & Chandon has paid tribute to some of history’s most iconic figures and cultural moments. This holiday season, the pioneering champagne house is honoring another milestone by celebrating the 150th anniversary of Moët & Chandon Impérial Brut with a stunning limited-edition bottle and gift box of its flagship wine.Moët & Chandon Impérial Brut 150th Anniversary Limited Edition Bottle & Gift Box (SRP $39.99; available nationwide): Moët & Chandon Impérial Brut was first created in 1869, named Impérial in honor of Napoleon, a close friend of the Champagne House’s Moët family. A gift that exudes history and elegance, this limited-edition bottle or gift box will resonate with loved ones this he center adds a touch of inspiration as the year closes out. A graceful golden straw yellow in color, this wine has a lively palate combined with finesse with bright fruity aromas of apple, pear, white peach and citrus and notes of floral nuances.
Happy 90th Barry Sterling
Here's aToast to Barry Sterling, Founder of Iron Horse Vineyard. When we lunched with Barry abd his LOvely Wfe Audrey a few years ago, we sampled all 10 of Iron Horse Cuvees. Here's hoping Barry & Audrey will Celebratein in the Same Fashion. And best wishes to all at Iron Horse, From Ann and Peter.
Rogue River Blue Tops the World's Cheeses
Only One Cheese can be World Champion;
More than 3,800m Cheeses were in contention.
At the World Cheese Championships held recently in Bergamo, Italy, Oregon's Roguee Creamery's Rogue River Blue was named the Very Best, OTM congratulates David Gremmels and his team on this singular achievement.
Gravner’s Pinot Grigio named “Most Thought Provoking Wine”
GRAVNER AWARDED “BLACK SWAN OF THE YEAR” AT WINE PINNACLE AWARDS IN SINGAPORE Gravner’s Pinot Grigio Venezia Giulia IGT has received the outstanding result at the first edition of Wine Pinnacle Awards, held at Resorts World Sentosa Ballroom on October 10th. The Black Swan category aims at highlighting challenging wines which have been able to break through on the international wine scene, despite escaping traditional canons. Our visit several years ago to Jacov Gravner's Vineyard on the border between Friuli-Venezia Giulia and Slovenia was one of OTM's most fascinating Wine Adventures.
Gravner’s Pinot Grigio is made from 100% Pinot Grigio. Selected and hand-harvested grapes are fermented with ambient yeasts and no temperature control in buried kvevri, as are called the typical Georgian amphoras. The wine is then left on the skins before being racked the following April and ages for 5 months in kvevri and 6 years in large oak vessels. The wine is bottled, without fining or filtration, and ages for another 4 years before being released on the market.
“We are very proud of this award. It acknowledges the important work carried out by my father” states Mateja Gravner, Josko’s daughter. “With neighbouring winemaker Radikon amongst the nominees, I see this prize as an award to Oslavia wine-making community and the local group of producers who have strongly believed in recovering old maceration techniques and native varieties. Oslavia has a lot to say to the world”.
Along with Radikon’s Ribolla Gialla Venezia Giulia IGT (Friuli - Italy), Black Swan category nominees included also Arnot-Roberts’ Sonoma Coast Syrah (California - US), Luke Lambert’ Syrah (Yarra Valley - Australia) and Château Pierre-Bise’ Savennieres Roches aux Moines (Loire - France).
Presented by Genting Singapore, Wine Pinnacle Awards mark the first-ever prize based on nominations. Wines are nominated by a respected panel of leading professionals and experts, coordinated by Jeannie Cho Lee MW, Andreas Larsson 2007 World’s Best Sommelier, Doug Frost MW & MS, British wine writer Oz Clarke and Kenichi Ohashi MW. With this process, Wine Pinnacle Awards aim at producing results that are inclusive and representative, thus establishing the Awards as truly authoritative, prestigious and unique.
Le Bernadin's Aldo SohM Wins another World Sommelier Award
When we met Aldo for the 1st time he told us about winning the World's Top Sommelier Award. and that he wouldn't be able to Repeat - Once a Winner you can't do it again. But Aldo added another Top Award just recently, Here are the details - which reached us in French language. So we're passing it along the same way............
Prix du Meilleur Restaurateur des Grandes Tables du Monde
Birgit Reitbauer, Steirereck, Vienne, Autriche
Prix M. CHAPOUTIER du Meilleur Sommelier des Grandes Tables du Monde
Aldo Sohm, Le Bernardin, New York, Etats-Unis
Prix Valrhona du Meilleur Pâtissier de restaurant des Grandes Tables du Monde
François Perret, La Table de L’Espadon au Ritz Paris, France
Prix Mauviel 1830 du Meilleur Directeur de Salle des Grandes Tables du Monde
Cristiana Romito, Ristorante Reale, Castel di Sangro, Italie
Britons are Bar Hoppers too
Our Good Friend William Drew of William Reed Business Media just anounced the 2019 World's Best Bars. With 10 out of the Top 50 being in London, British Cocktail Enthusiasts, can claim Primacy! New York City mustered 6, but did capture Top Spot for Greenwich Village's Dante. Singapore repeated with 6 Bars honored. Check out all the details at https://www.worlds50bestbars.com/about.php.
London's MIchelin Stars - What are the new Odds
Britons are a nation of Bettors (some say Punters) and this year's favorites were just published in EATER LONDON. Here's the Latest Line - https://london.eater.com/2019/10/2/20894892/michelin-star-london-restaurants-2020-predictions, OTM is thrilled that three of our past interviewees, Claude Bosi , Clare Smyth and Simon Rogan , are among the favorites to gain the Ultimate Three Stars. For Claude & Clare, their achievement would achieved in just 2 years. And Simon, what can you say about this hugely talented Chef who attracts Diners to make a pilgrimage to the Lake Districf as well as Marylebone. Our only worry is whether we'll be able to score a table next time we're in London..
Serendipity 3 celebrates 65th Anniversary
One of our New York contacts sends us this news- Serendipity 3, the legendary New York City restaurant and general store is celebrating 65 years as one the city’s truly unique dining experiences. The home of amazing food and decadent desserts, such as the Frrrozen Hot Chocolate, Serendipity has been captivating millions of patrons since its inception. It’s an enchanting place where artists got their inspiration and actors fulfilled their cravings. Beginning with Marilyn Monroe, Andy Warhol, Grace Kelly and Cary Grant in the 1950’s, continuing with a celebrity following that includes Cher, Candice Bergen, Melanie Griffith and Ron Howard, the restaurant continues to attract the newest crop of hot young celebrities including, Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, Taylor Swift and Katy Perry. In addition, the restaurant has been the setting of three major Hollywood productions, One Fine Day(1996) with George Clooney and Michelle Pfeiffer, Serendipity (2001) with John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale, and Trust the Man (2005) with Julianne Moore and David Duchovny. Original founder, Stephen Bruce, arrived in New York City as a teenager in search of fame and fortune. He met his future business partners, Calvin Holt and Patch Caradine, in dance class and the rest is serendipitous history. The three princes of Serendip opened the first theme restaurant where comfort food was the fare and everything was for sale, including the Tiffany lamps and marble tables they found by chance and sagacity. The restaurant and general store became a factory for Stephen’s fashion designs, especially his Woodstock inspired denim line, pieces of which are part of five major museum collections, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute. The restaurant and general store continues to reinvent a whimsical world full of outrageous food, decadent desserts, and outlandish merchandise, located within a Tiffany-jeweled fantasy setting.. To help celebrate this milestone anniversary, Sweet Serendipity, the smash-hit cookbook, returns with an all-new cover and jacket in celebration of this historic 65th anniversary. The over-the-top recipes, madcap styling, towering sundaes, and irresistible joie de vivre have only gotten better with time. Academy Award and Grammy Award-winning superstar, Cher, has contributed an all-new foreword to share her devotion to Serendipity and its iconic Frrrozen Hot Chocolate with the next generation of Serendipity fans.
The 2019 Third-Annual Western PA Lamb Cook-off is HERE (almost)
.And you’re cordially invited by our team at TABLE and Pure Bred lamb by Chef Thomas Keller and Keith Martin (Elysian Fields) to enjoy the most delicious local food event in our region We’ve put our thinking caps on upside down and backwards to make this year’s event nothing short of spectacular. Our chef teams are ready to spoil you with indulgent lamb dishes you’ve never tasted before. This culinary competition attracts collaborative chef teams from our City’s most respected restaurants. Please join us for a beautiful fall day in the Strip District! More info at https://www.tablemagazine.com/lamb-fest-1
COURT OF MASTER SOMMELIERS, AMERICAS WELCOMES SEVEN MASTER SOMMELIERS TO ITS PRESTIGIOUS RANKS
St. Louis, MO (September 11, 2019) – The Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas ™ is proud to welcome seven members to the organization: Nick Davis, Medium Plus, Seattle, WA; Mariya Kovacheva, Pernod Ricard, West Palm Beach, FL; Justin Moore, Vetri Cucina, Las Vegas, NV; Vincent Morrow, ONE65, San Francisco, CA; Joshua Orr, Broadbent Selections, San Diego, CA; Jeremy Shanker, Michael Mina, San Francisco, CA; and Jill Zimorski, Champagne Specialist Representing Moet Hennessy Champagne Portfolio, Chicago, IL.Recently 150 individuals from 22 states and Canada attempted the Master Sommelier Diploma Examination proctored by the Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas. The seven noted above, successfully displayed mastery and met the qualification to be awarded the title Master Sommelier. The results were announced at the Krug Reception on September 11th at the Four Seasons Resort in St. Louis, Missouri. “The examinations are an opportunity for our candidates to shine as they demonstrate their mastery of our beverage service industry,” said Devon Broglie, MS, Chairman of the Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas. “It is inspiring to see their dedication to rigorous study and preparation on display during the examination days.”
Following the celebration of our new members, Broglie reflected on the challenges facing the organization and thanked the Examination Committee for its tireless work to provide a rigorous, exacting and fair examination consistent with the Court’s peerless Master Sommelier credential.
“We have made great strides to become a stronger organization over the past year,” Broglie said. “We have improved the security of our examinations, strengthened our ethical principles, and we continue our commitment to leading the industry with integrity as we celebrate new Master Sommeliers and mentor all those still striving to attain the goal.”
The Master Sommelier Diploma is the highest distinction a professional can attain in the beverage service industry. The Master Sommelier Diploma Examination consists of three sections: a verbal theory examination, a wine assessment exercise using the Deductive Tasting Method, and a practical component that focuses on hospitality, beverage service, salesmanship, and overall business acumen. Candidates must receive passing scores in each section to earn the highly coveted Master Sommelier title.
“The Master Sommelier Diploma Examination is extremely demanding. We applaud the efforts of all candidates who sat this fair and rigorous examination,” Broglie said. “Today we celebrate the success of these seven new Master Sommeliers and continue our commitment to mentor all candidates on their path to success as we chart the course for current and future Master Sommeliers worldwide.”
We're just wild about Wild Honey
And we're not the only ones. Here's how Eater described one of our favorite London Dining Spots Chef Anthony Demetre’s relocated Wild Honey expresses all the artless excellence that made its original Mayfair location such a gem. A dish of macaroni cacio e pepe using tellicherry and kampot pepper and paired with boneless chicken wings has the it factor early doors, but it’s the unassuming flawlessness running through Demetre’s approach to food and hospitality that makes this second coming an instant hit. For more info. www.wildhoneystjames.co.uk
We couldn't Agree More!!
Celebrated Cookbook Author coming to DiAnoia’s Eatery,
On October 13th, DiAnoia’s Eatery will be celebrating the release of Katie Parla’s newest cookbook “Food of the Italian South: Recipes for Classic, Disappearing, and Lost Dishes.” The cookbook delves into the culinary traditions of the Italian South, a region best known for its rustic and romantic cuisine. Guests will be able to meet the acclaimed author, enjoy some of her soul-satisfying recipes prepared by Chef Dave Anoia and the DiAnoia’s Eatery kitchen team, and try one of her featured cocktails, the Negroni del Capo.
Tickets ($65 per person) include a signed copy of “Food of the Italian South: Recipes for Classic, Disappearing, and Lost Dishes,” and can be purchased at: https://www.dianoiaseatery.com/product/katie_parla/
October 13th, 2019
6pm – 9pm
DiAnoia’s Eatery, 2549 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15222
DiAnoia’s Eatery is owned by Chef Dave Anoia and his wife Aimee DiAndrea and has been voted one of 2019’s Best Restaurants in Pittsburgh by Pittsburgh Magazine. An Italian deli and café by day and a full-service ristorante by night, the eatery specializes in homemade pastas, pastries, breads and sandwiches
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Katie Parla, a New Jersey native, is a Rome-based food and beverage journalist, culinary guide, and educator. She is the author of the Saveur Award–winning food and travel site KatieParla.com, the ebook Eating & Drinking in Rome, more than twenty travel guides, and the coauthor of the IACP award–winning cookbook Tasting Rome. Parla has appeared on and produced Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern and F*ck, That’s Delicious with Action Bronson, and served as a culinary consultant on Season 2 of Netflix’s Master of None. Her travel writing, recipes, and food criticism appear in the New York Times, Food & Wine, Saveur, Australian Gourmet Traveller, the Guardian, AFAR, Condé Nast Traveler, Punch, Eater, and more.
On the Manu has intiervied Katie more than once so we know she is truly we informed about how to experience it in Italy or guide you to Cook it for you and yours.
Burrata Con Tartufo a Winner for Lioni Latticini at the 2019 American Cheese Society Awards.
Originally from the Avellino Province in Italy’s Campania Region, this luxurious Cheese is now made in Union NJ. And it took the Crown, First Place in the Flavored Cheese Category. Salvatore Salzarulo, Co-Owner and Co-Founder Comments “We are so fortunate to be recognized among our Peers……” OTM says well done, and we hope to Taste some soon.
World’s 50 Best Restaurant Organizers cuts the Mystery about 2020 Location –
The Answer - Flanders-Belgium, and a Date sometime in June. So it’s back to the Old World – and a shorter flight for OTM. For more about the region and it’s major city, Antwerp, https://www.theworlds50best.com/blog/News/the-worlds-50-best-restaurants-2020-flanders-antwerp.html. To Read spokesman William Drew’s introduction..
Carr Valley Cheese Wins Big at International Cheese Awards
We are thrilled to announce Carr Valley's BIG WINS at the 2019 https://www.internationalcheeseawards.co.uk, taking home 8 awards, including the trophy for "Best US Cheese" with Glacier Penta Creme! There has never been a better time to try their fantastic blues, which swept the "American Blue Cheese" category with Smoked Glacier Blue (Silver)l and Wildfire Blue (Bronze).backing up Glacier Penta. OTM is thrilled biuf not surprised!. Our interview with Carr Valley can be heard in our Episode dated February 11, 2018, reachable directly at http://edge1550.com/podcasts/OnTheMenu-20180211.mp3. We also hope to get Carr Valley back on the program.
Personal reflections on World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2019.
OTM was “tuned in” to the live Video Stream. Not the same as being in the Hall in Singapore, but a whole lot less expensive and exhausting. It seemed that Everyone was betting that NOMA2 would top the list, but Rene Redzepi will have to wait. Eligible to participate in the 2019 awards due to a controversial change in the rules, Rene had to be satisfied with 2nd place. Rene might also check his rear vision for Geranium, Rising fast in Copenhagen. Their 5th Place finish was greeted by the evening's loudest cheers,- or maybe their travel bill was the highest.
In the meantime a French Restaurant, Mirazur, helmed by an Italian-Argentine Chef, Mauro Colagreco, won the day and also has it’s place for the future in the new category, Best of the Best. Gaggan crept up a step from 5 to 4. Is the rumor still out there that the Chef will open something new? Central & Maido, headed by Peruvian Superstars Virgilio Martinez & Micha Tsumura at 6 and 10 validate Lima Peru’s claim the dining scene there is World Class. We already knew. Asador Etxebarri at 3. Mugaritz at 7 and Highest Climber Azurmendi at 14 would allow Spain’s Basque Country to claim an Award for Propinquity (closeness) if there was one.
We first met Moscow’s White Rabbit in London many years ago, and are quite astonished to find them at the dizzy rank of 13. They were joined by another Moscow spot, Twins Garden at 19. Disfrutar, 2017’s One to Watch and 2018 Highest New continues to rise, and broke into Top 10. Our Great Lunch and Great Interview last year in Barcelona lead us to forecast this as a future Top 5 Challenger. Le Calandre near Padova, Le Bernadin in NYC and Blue Hill at Stone Barns maintain their positions in the 30s, a tribute to their consistency.
5 Restaurants with Women Chefs were recognized in the Top 50, Dominque Crenn among them after opining that she had been snubbed in previous awards except Best Female. But where is Carme Ruscalleda, celebrating 30 years at Spain’s San Pau. We celebrated with them last year – and they have not missed a step! Clare Smyth, 2018’s Best Female might have a similar compliant. Britain might possibly further complain that Clove Club and Lyle’s are not the only award-worthy places. Worse treatment went to London’s The Ledbury which dropped to the 51+ Tier.
It was a good year for France, not only # 1; also Chef’s Choice to Alain Passard to go with #8, and 2 other Parisians at 16 and 25. In the meantime Berlin’s Tim Raue and his Wife continue a slow but steady climb, with innovative Asian-inspired cuisine at a location just around the corner from legendary Checkpoint Charlie. Mexico’s Enrique Olivera won an usual combination, #12 for Mexico City’s Pujol (best in Mexico), #23 for NYC’s Cosme (best in USA) and Best Female (for Cosme) Chef Daniela Solo-Innes. So many stories! But the top story surely must go to Jose Andres, 1st recipient of the New Amex Icon Award; Is a Nobel Peace Prize next for this Dynamo Chef?
We’re sure that you have your own memories and opinions, but you’ll respect ours. Or email us if you have a serious disagreement – and we’ll add it here.
Greatt New Tastes from Nonino
What a Wonderful Surprise to find out that recently reopened Dish Osteria on Pittsburgh’s Southside, is a local source for Amaro Nonino. https://www.dishosteria.com/ Our Great Friends at Nonino Distillatori sent us a bottle which we long ago consumed, so we now have a local source for this “Charming Sweet & Bitter Mix (as described by the Noninos). And another-treat just introduced is Aperitivo Nonino Botanical Drink, based on UE Grape Distillate Frangolino Monovitigno. What will they think of next? http://www.grappanonino.it/en.
Happy Birthday Superior Motors & Chef Kevin Sousa. July 30 is the Day, Superior Motors in Braddock is the place
And Chef Kevin wants you to know that you're invited.. They're planning to have a very down to earth celebration that will include some of Chef Kevin Sousa's signature street food dishes from years past, Millie’s Homemade Ice Cream setting up an Ice Cream Float bar (spiked & spirit free), the ‘Ga’hed Cuz’ (Pittsburghese for “Go ahead, cousin”) speakeasy bar, a cigar lounge, live music from DJ Selecta, Beauty Slap, Princess Nostalgia, and Hill Jordan & Slide Worldwide, plus the second annual August Fetterman water balloon toss. Word i that tickets are going fast. Get yours at https://www.exploretock.com/superiormotors/event/65782/anniversary-party-2.
In Memoriam Jean=Louis Paladin
Special Awards at the 2019 Fancy Food Show
Congratulations to the following who were recognized with Awaeds by the Specialty Food Association. Interesingly most of them have been Guests of our Program over the years, several of them more than once. We are pleased to add our Congratulations on the will deserved Honors..
Receiving Lifetime Achievement Awards were Benny Curl of Byrd Cookie Co., who spurred distribution of Byrd Cookies from Harrods to Hong Kong and beyond; https://www.byrdcookiecompany.com/; Ariane Daguin of D’Artagnan, who grew a meat and game business by organizing small farmers and promoting conscientiously raised meat, https://www.dartagnan.com/’ and Bob Moore of Bob’s Red Mill, who founded America’s whole grain movement, https://www.bobsredmill.com/. Inducted into the SFA’s Hall of Fame were Robert and Margaret Garcia of RW Garcia Co., Inc, https://rwgarcia.com/, Allison Hooper and Bob Reese of Vermont Creamery, https://www.vermontcreamery.com/, Shawn McBride of Foah International LLC, https://www.fona.com/, Ahmed Rahim and Reem Hassani of Numi Organic Tea, http://nomatea.com/, and Stewart Reich of Hanson Faso Sales & Marketing, http://www.hansonfaso.com/.
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Exciting News from Michter's
Our Great Good Friends from Michter’s just sent us exciting news. In July, Louisville based Michter’s Distillery will begin shipping its 2019 release of 10 Year Single Barrel Rye. Because Michter’s continues to experience whiskey shortages, it is anticipated that this will be the only bottling of the distiller’s 10 Year Single Barrel Kentucky Straight Rye this year. This July release will mark the first release of whiskey by recently named Master Distiller Dan McKee. “In my years at Michter’s, I’ve seen how incredibly focused our previous Master Distillers Pam Heilmann and Willie Pratt have been on waiting to release whiskey till it was just right,” said McKee. “Working with our Master of Maturation Andrea Wilson, I will continue that tradition of only releasing whiskey that makes us extremely proud.” Michter’s President Joseph J. Magliocco commented, “Before he moved up to the position of Master Distiller, Dan did a fantastic job in the role of Distiller at Michter’s and was a key member of our tasting panel. Having worked with Dan for some time now, I know that our distillery is in great hands.” The 2019 release of this 10 Year Single Barrel Kentucky Straight Rye exemplifies the Michter’s style of Kentucky rye. “Of course, the mashbills for our rye whiskeys include the distinctive rye grain by definition, but they also include a good amount of corn and malted barley resulting in a rich rye with layers of delicious flavor that complement the spice notes in the whiskey,” said Andrea Wilson. For more, https://michters.com/.
Rancho Gordo's Steve Sando Responds to Trump Tariffs
Effective immediately, in response to threatened tariffs on Mexican imports and continual assault on the immigration and refugee problem along our southern border, Rancho Gordo, in conjunction with our Mexican partners Xoxoc, is adding a 5% charge to all of our imports from Mexico and 100% of this money will be donated to No More Deaths, a humanitarian group based in Arizona that provides water, medical assistance, along with search and rescue and legal service to immigrants. More details on their blog http://www.ranchogordoblog.com/2019/06/announcement-our-response-to-trumps-proposed-tariff-on-mexican-imports.html
Fancy Food Show NYC Javitz Center June 23-25
.If you want to know about the Best and Latest in Gourmet Food and Drink, this is your One-Stop place to be. Organized by the Specialty Food Association, this Trade Event fills every corner of the Giant Convention Center . For more information go to http://www.specialtyfood.com, and pack your most comfortable Shoes.
Pittsburgh-based Sommelier wins competition for South African Wine Cup
When OTM heard that Adam Knoerzer, Dean of Drinking and head of educational programming at Palate Partners & Dreadnought Wines in Lawrenceville, Pittsburgh had earned a spot to compete in the national finals in the https://www.wosa.co.za/Sommeliercup/ naturally we invited him to join our program, The competition, which is held every three years, tests sommeliers’ knowledge of South African wine, with the ultimate prize of a trip to South Africa in September to compete against other national finalists. We just got the exciting news that Adam won the Final in NYC last weekend, so he will represent the US in Cape Town in September. Adam will continue sharing his knowledge of South African wines through his South African Wine Safari class series in Lawrenceville. https://www.palatepartners.com/ for details, and don’t miss the opportunity to hear our conversation with Adam in Sunday’s OTM Episode.
Leah Chase, In Memoriam
RIP Leah Chase - Our Interview with Leah at 2006 James Beard Awards. In memory of this Great NOLA Landmark and her passing at the Ripe Old Age of 96.
Veteran London Restaurateurs
Twin Shockwaves Hit London's Dining Scene. First to hit the News was the collapse of Jamie Oliver's Empire, headed for Banktruptcy (Administration in Brit-speak). Some of his business interest will continue to Operate. Then Peter Gordon announced the closure of his Iconic Providores and Tapa Room after 18 years on Marylebone High Street. No news available about his Aukland NZ Restaurants.
New Stuff at Spork Pittsburgh
Starting this week, Chef Christian Frangiadis is adding an exciting new option for diners —Tasting Menus served at Chef's Counter. Two versions will be available, Carnivore and Vegetarian, each with seven courses, and matched wines are available as well. Next month, recognizing Negroni Week and Pittsburgh Pride, Spork’s Pastry Chef and Cocktail Crew will be featuring the Signature Cocktail and a Sour Cherry Pop Tart, called just "the Tart", but with some special “sides". Part of the proceeds will go to local charities. While you're at Spork, be sure to take a look at the garden, several times larger than last year. You can be sure the Chefs will be making some special treats with the harvest. We'll see you there!! www.sporkph.com.
Chef Quique DaCosta to bring Londoners Paella
Michelin 3-Star Modern Chef will open Arroz QD in Fitxrovia this summer. Quique's Home Restaurant is in Denia (where OTM frst met him) between Valencia and Alicante. He promises Classic versions of Paella Valenciana "Mateilaizing a Passion I have been nurturing for Years". Chef promises contemporary rice dfishes featuring sesonal UK ingredients. We wonder if he'll be offering the Renowned Red Shrimp of Denia, which we have adored when visiting Spain's Eastern Coast. More at https://london.eater.com/2017/12/20/16800166/quique-dacosta-three-michelin-starred-spanish-restaurant-arros-qd-oxford-street-london. . .
Happy Mother's Day
We wish the Happiest of Happy Days to all Mothers Everywhere - Our Very Best wishes. From Ann & Peter
Sydney's Saint Peter in Food & Wine May Issue
When OTM was planning a viist to Sydney, we were intrigued to read about Saint Peter, and decided to include it in our itinerary.. After all we needed to check out our Namesake. We sure were right. And Food & Wine's corespondent just agreed. -https://www.foodandwine.com/chefs/josh-niland-australian-seafood. Better still listen to OTM's interviews, OTM Episode June 4 2017, http://edge1550.com/podcasts/OnTheMenu-20170604.mp3 Josh''s radical concepts about how to purchase, store and serve Australia's Seafood Bounty are quite unique. And the tesulte on the plate are truly World Class
Best Wines of the World Announced
18,477 Wines were tested in this Competition. The Results are published at https://tastingbook.com/. See if your favourites made the cut in over 20 Different Categories.
Great News for Fans of Anthony Demetre’s Wild Honey in London
OTM was saddened when we saw the news that the original Wild Honey was going to close, since it was one of our favorite Dining Destinations in London. In fact we first met Chef Anthony at his first venture Arbutus. So how great to hear that WH will become WH St. James, at a new location. Opening is targeted for the end of May. The WH website has not been updated with details, but it’s sure to be - https://www.wildhoneyrestaurant.co.uk/. Best wishes Anthony, now we have another excuse to catch up with you again.
412 Food Rescue launches Exciting New Development in their Mission
Pittsburgh’s Local food recovery nonprofit 412 Food Rescue just announced the beginning of their next approach in their mission to simultaneously address the issues of food waste and hunger at a new multi-purpose community space in Millvale today. Housed in the recently renovated shared space of the former Millvale Moose kitchen, one area of focus is the Good Food Project – the coming to fruition of an idea and plan submitted by 412 Food Rescue for - and second-place winner of - the UpPrize social innovation challenge in 2017.
“We are excited to launch new methods of food recovery,” said Leah Lizarondo, CEO and co-founder of 412 Food Rescue. “This kitchen will help us to stabilize highly perishable surplus food as ingredients that can be prepared and frozen, then providwed as a healthy, convenient meal for people in need.” For more about this amazing project – www.412foodrescue.org.
Nelson's Green Brier Does it Again
The Nelson Brothers Andy and Charlie did it again at 2019 San Francisco World;s Spirits Competition. Their Belle Meade Honey Cask Finish Bourbon was awarded World Best Barrel-Finished Bourbon. This is the Nelson's second win in this category, in the past 4 years. To put this in persepctive, the SF Competition covered more than 3,000 spirits. The Nelson Distillery is located in Nashville, and the original pre-dates Prohibition. For more of the Story on how it was revived, https://greenbrierdistillery.com/.
Maida Heatter - Still Baking after all these Years
At Age 102 Maida, dubbed “Queen of Cake” by Saveur, just published a New Book, Happiness is Baking: Favorite Desserts from the Queen of Cake. Our Good Friend Dorie Greenspan contributed the Foreword. An Echo of Simon & Garfunkel seems appropriate.. You can get a copy of this book through our OTM Bookshelf, also Dorie Grenspan's latest, Everyday Dorie: The Way I Cook.
News about World's 50 Best Restaurants
World’s 50 Best Restaurants in the News. The Asian version of the Awards took place in Macau, and in something of an upset Odette in Singapore (Chef Julien Royer) took Top Spot, over Bangkok’s Gaggan which won the Title 4 years in a row. Get details of the entire Asia Top 50, Female Chef, Pastry Chef, etc. at https://www.theworlds50best.com/.
The World’s 50 Best Awards is scheduled for June 25 in Singapore, and this year the Voting Scheme has been changed – see the web site for more details about these developments.
British Airways Non-Stop Service from Pittsburgh to LHR Starts this week
Get Details at https://www.britishairways.com/en-gb/destinations/pittsburgh/flights-to-pittsburgh.This opens up Connections to Airports all around Europe and the Rest of the World. Nuisance of the need for Charlotte or Philadephia will be a thing of the past. OTM Applauds!!