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The Tasting Menu at Le Cinq, Four Seasons Hotel, Paris
Oct 25th, 2017 by donuts4dinner

I read aaaaall about the ten restaurants in Paris with three Michelin stars before my fiancé and I visited with the hope that one would stand out to me. Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athénée was the most beautiful one. Astrance was the hardest to get into. Arpège was the vegetable-focused one. And then I read the review that opened the heavens and shone a light on the perfect three-star for me: Jay Rayner’s takedown of Le Cinq in The Guardian. It’s not worth your time to bother with the actual review–it reads like it’s written by someone who won’t go to a fine dining restaurant because they won’t let him wear cargo shorts–but this Eater post with cats reciting the worst lines is pretty fun!

A Barbie-sized silicone breast implant? Something so acidic you could use it to shine a coin? Sea urchin ice cream?! Sign me up!

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Tower of Macarons in Paris
Oct 19th, 2017 by donuts4dinner

Peeking through a Paris shop window at a literal tower of macarons, giant chocolate eggs, and edible cars! Is that a little camera in the corner so they can see how many people press their faces to the glass and drool?

Peeking through a Paris shop window at a literal tower of macarons, giant chocolate eggs, and edible cars! Is that a little camera in the corner so they can see how many people press their faces to the glass and drool?

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La Bossue, Paris
Oct 10th, 2017 by donuts4dinner

Of course we needed some treats after our pizza lunch, so we stopped in La Bossue looking for a Paris-Brest pastry, but we had to settle for all of these canelés and financiers.

Of course we needed some treats after our pizza lunch, so we stopped in La Bossue looking for a Paris-Brest pastry, but we had to settle for all of these canelés and financiers.

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Il Brigante Pizza, Paris
Oct 9th, 2017 by donuts4dinner

I’m a really bad tourist and always want to eat pizza wherever I am in the world, so during our day in the neighborhood of Montmartre in Paris, I found a pizzeria called Il Brigante, run by an Italian transplant. We walked in and nicely asked him if he spoke English (in French, of course). He said no. And then he started to tell us in French that he spoke French, Italian, Spanish, German . . . I WISH we would’ve asked him if he speaks Polish, since Jack does, but we just smiled, because everyone in France had been so nice to us, and we couldn’t tell if he was joking or not. In the end, he spoke perfect English, and we got a fantastic pizza.

I’m a really bad tourist and always want to eat pizza wherever I am in the world, so during our day in the neighborhood of Montmartre in Paris, I found a pizzeria called Il Brigante, run by an Italian transplant. We walked in and nicely asked him if he spoke English (in French, of course). He said no. And then he started to tell us in French that he spoke French, Italian, Spanish, German . . . I WISH we would’ve asked him if he speaks Polish, since Jack does, but we just smiled, because everyone in France had been so nice to us, and we couldn’t tell if he was joking or not. In the end, he spoke perfect English, and we got a fantastic pizza.

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Mamma Guidara’s at The NoMad Bar
Jul 6th, 2017 by donuts4dinner

If you’ve ever thought, “Boy, I sure love Eleven Madison Park, but wouldn’t it be great if the chef instead used his immense skills to make me a chicken parm?”, Mamma Guidara’s is for you. It’s Chef Daniel Humm’s take on classic red sauce dishes, named in loving honor of his co-owner, Will Guidara’s, mom.

On Sunday nights, the NoMad Bar transforms into one of those red-checkered-tablecloth joints from the 80s, and although the decor is a little chintzy (in the best way), the food is just what you’d expect from a three-Michelin-star chef. And it’s only $74 for four courses that seem more like eight or ten by the time it’s all said and done.

Mamma Guidara’s is on hiatus this summer but will be back on September 10th! In the meantime, drool over what you’ll be getting, and watch this site for reservations.

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Chef David Santos’s Secret NYC Dinner Club, Um Segredo, at Good Stock
Jun 26th, 2017 by donuts4dinner

I’ve followed my favorite NYC chef from his West Village restaurant Louro to his taking-the-city-by-storm soup venture, Good Stock, but what made me first fall in love with Chef David Santos‘s cooking were his secret home supper clubs, which he called Um Segredo (“a secret” in Portuguese). Well, they’re back, and they’re not so secret anymore! In that they take place right out in the open at the Good Stock on Carmine Street.

But the same secret feel is still there: just you and five others in the tiny store front, gathered around a table while Chef Santos cooks directly in front of you, offering insight about each of the ingredients and just shooting the breeze like he doesn’t need to concentrate while shaving $100 worth of summer truffle onto your plates.

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The Tasting Menu at Agern
Mar 30th, 2017 by donuts4dinner

Had you asked me a week ago if I had any interest in Nordic cuisine, I would’ve given you something like a polite, “Sure, I’m interested in all cuisines!” And then, you know, gone back to eating my tacos. But if you’d prefaced that question by mentioning that the chef at Agern, the restaurant inside of Grand Central Terminal, has a restaurant in Iceland called Dill, I might have thought differently. I LOVE dill. And it doesn’t hurt that the owner of Agern is the same guy who helped found Noma in Denmark, which has been named the best restaurant in the world, oh, I don’t know, four times?

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The Tasting Menu at Senses – Warsaw, Poland
Nov 4th, 2016 by donuts4dinner

I’m not sure people think of creative fine dining when they think of Poland, so it’s not surprising that Warsaw’s Senses restaurant only has one Michelin star, even if that’s a crime. My boyfriend and his family are from the area originally, so he took me there last month to see where he grew up, and naturally, I checked the Michelin guide. There are only two Michelin-starred restaurants in the whole country, and one just received its star this year, so we decided to give the new kid a try.

I emailed the restaurant for a reservation two weeks before our trip and was able to get us in at 8pm, although we admittedly were trying for a probably-not-so-popular Monday night. They offer 7- and 9-course tastings, which my boyfriend’s family all laughed at the impossibility of. They were super skeptical about their ability to eat so many courses and for so many hours, especially when his dad doesn’t even like seafood. But I basically forced them to forge ahead, and it ended up being one of the very best meals and experiences I’ve had anywhere.

In NYC, this meal would’ve been on par with Eleven Madison Park or Brooklyn Fare. It would have easily had three Michelin stars, and it would have cost $300. In Warsaw, it cost $99 and included about 20 extra treats not listed on the menu. And even value aside, the service was phenomenal. The servers spoke in English to me and then repeated everything in Polish for my boyfriend’s family, and just like at our two-Michelin-starred dinner in Vienna, everyone was hilarious. Just always anticipating what would delight us and making us laugh through every course. Having just visited Eleven Madison Park last month, I noticed a huge difference between the polite professionalism of the servers there and the way the Polish servers made us feel like we were guests in their home. Which might make sense when you remember that Chef Andrea Camastra is Italian and French.

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Bowery Meat Company is Weirdly Worth the Money
Sep 28th, 2016 by donuts4dinner

Last year, I spent a week on a yacht touring some of the islands of Greece with my boyfriend and three of his friends. One of those friends was visiting NYC last week from Romania, so I wanted to take her someplace new and well-rated. A co-worker happened to mention Bowery Meat Company to me that very week, and not only had the New York Times given it two stars, but it had meat right in the name.

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Kellogg’s NYC in Times Square
Sep 26th, 2016 by donuts4dinner

I try to avoid carbs and sugar in my day-to-day life, so I never let myself have cereal for breakfast. I can’t tell you the last time I ate it, but I’m guessing it was in college, and it was probably something with “fiber” in the name so I could feel like an adult. But I secretly love cereal and was delighted to learn that Kellogg’s NYC opened in Times Square and that I’d need to eat a huge bowl of the stuff in the interest of reviewing it. The sacrifices I make, you know.

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