As the clock strikes midnight, many will be sipping fizzy champagne, kissing strangers standing nearby, or staring at the television watching New Yorkers and Dick Clark ring in the rockin’ New Year. For chefs, these hallowed traditions are rare luxuries - most are confined to their upscale restaurant kitchens, preparing their intensively planned and carefully executed New Year’s Eve menus.
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Hudson’s feels closer in to town these days, but Jeff Blank’s exotic game–centered cuisine still seems otherworldly. The Duck Diablos, bacon-wrapped bites of duck breast, are as delicious as ever, pairing perfectly with an amuse-bouche of summery watermelon gazpacho. A salmon filet had a horseradish crust that gave it a nice little kick; sadly, the accompanying truffle gnocchi were gluey and lacking in flavor.
It’s dark, it’s noisy, but it’s appealing in a funky-fancy way. Wildfish, an expansive dining room-cum-bar, serves a predominantly young crowd a broad spectrum of well-prepared fish and shellfish, some even on the distinctly exotic side. Either the thick and rich lobster-shrimp bisque with cognac or the tart heirloom tomato salad will get you off on the right foot, and from there it might be the Pacific ahi tuna with Asian pear and mango (highly recommended) or the equally succulent swordfish steak with crab and avocado.
Have they actually lowered the prices here? Seemed so on our last visit, with a large, meaty, slow-braised lamb shank weighing in at $24. Other highlights included an imaginative kale salad with currants, pine nuts, and Parmesan, two good risottos—one with lobster and the other asparagus—and a great salad of burrata, cherry tomatoes, and arugula. Less successful was a special of roasted oysters with cheesy bread crumbs; it came oversalted and with a too-hard crust.
In his role as president of Farm Aid, Wille Nelson has taken to the pages of the Huffington Post to argue that the rhetoric of Occupy Wall Street applies to family farms and food as much as it does banks.
CBS News’ The Early Show added El Paso’s H&H Car Wash to its “Local Legend” series earlier this week. As most Texans know, the H&H is not just a car wash, but one of the state’s best Mexican restaurants.
Two weeks ago, Houston Chronicle food critic Alison Cook gave three stars to Melange Creperie for its “painstakingly made French pancakes” and “inventive filling.” As Cook noted at the end of the review, this was a bit of a big deal, given that Melange is not a bricks-and-mortar restaurant. Cook even had to use the word “theoretically” before a paragraph about the food cart’s hours.
Ever wondered how a zoo tends to the varied dietary needs of animals ranging from sea lions to vampire bats? Well, Allan Turner had a piece in the Houston Chronicle on Monday that took readers inside the Houston Zoo’s commissary, which whips up meals for the zoo’s six thousand animals every day.
Putting an unfortunate spin on “stinky cheese,” the US Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has filed a lawsuit against the Austin-based retail grocery chain Whole Foods Market, alleging a whistleblower violation. OSHA’s release says that in November 2009, Whole Foods’ Miami Beach location suffered a ruptured sewer line, which was: