Sunday, July 29, 2012

Bistro Twenty Five, White Plains, NY

Bistro Twenty Five is a recently renovated restaurant and bar located on the edge of the Maple Moor golf club in White Plains, New York. The menu reads classic Italian-American, and what you'll find on your plate is true to those roots, yet still has a bit of modern touch to it. I had the opportunity to dine there two nights in a row, so I was able to sample a good variety of dishes and appetizers. This restaurant was clearly worth the second trip.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Cinnamon Raisin French Toast - A Vacation Breakfast

So we were away on vacation with the kids at a small beach condo down on the Jersey Shore. The rental came with a full kitchen and some basic cookware, plates, and silverware, but no supplies. A quick trip to the local market solved that problem- with the discovery of a nice, on-sale loaf of quality cinnamon-raisin bread. So, with a small selection of cooking gear- not my usual complement of familiar tools and very sharp knives, and a few basic groceries, I was able to whip up a simple, fun breakfast that even the kids loved...

Friday, July 13, 2012

When in Philadelphia...

When in Philadelphia, grabbing a quick cheese steak is practically a requirement. The last time I was there, and had to find a quick lunch, I ended up stopping at a nondescript food truck sitting at the corner of North Broad and Callowhill, next to the Philadelphia Inquirer building. This is the classic Philadelphia street food- a piece of comfort food that is to Philadelphia what the dirty-water hot dog is to New York. This sandwich doesn't even try to be anything other than a good, hearty, utilitarian lunch. It is not high-end, just good solid street food, just like it should be. It did not come from a kitchen as well known as the highly publicized Genos or Pat's King of Steaks. This Cheesesteak came from a more humble origin- and is possibly more authentic in it's own unassuming way. It comes from Gus' Lunch Truck - apparently a local neighborhood fixture that's been in place for 21 years. Gus' future is uncertain- Gus plans to retire and may sell the truck if there is no longer enough business to keep them going. I didn't know any of this when I enjoyed my cheesesteak, but now I appreciate having the chance to have had a part of this little piece of the city's history.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Octopus Salad and Mussels at the Good Dog Bar, Philadelphia, PA

Philadelphia is a city with a tough image. Many areas within it's sprawling borders are filled with old buildings that look like they have been slowly crumbling for decades, juxtaposed against a more modern downtown area. You get a sense of age from the place- similar to what you would see in Manhattan, and you also see the newer, more ambitious construction. Philadelphia is clearly a city with one foot in the old, and traditional, and one foot in the new and forward-looking. This combination of opposites seems to be fertile ground for good food - the kind that innovates and takes risks, while remaining respectful of the underlying traditions behind the food. Last time I was in Philadelphia on business, a tip from an old friend led me to a small pub and restaurant that captured that idea perfectly - the Good Dog Bar and Restaurant.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Fried Cheese Curds- Miller Brewhouse, Milwaukee WI

So I was on my way home from Milwaukee- inside General Mitchell International Airport actually- I had plenty of time to kill before my flight out- so there was also plenty of time for a little lunch.  The Miller Brewhouse restaurant seemed to be the most promising choice just outside the security checkpoint for concourse E. Over the two days I was in town, I heard that "fried cheese curds" was a local thing to have, and Miller Brewhouse had them on the menu...