Since Chinese New Year (it’s Year of the Horse) is pretty close to Valentine’s Day this year, I might as well mash them together and give you ideas as to gift giving to your family (if you do celebrate Chinese or Lunar New Year) and loved one (Valentine’s Day). To those who celebrate Chinese New Year: 恭喜發財! Gong xi fa cai! Wines and Spirits Ramey Wines was founded in 1996 by David Ramey and his wife in Healdsburg, California. The winery creates critically acclaimed, award-winning wines ever since, committed to Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Syrah as their primary varietals. Their..
Godiva’s Senior Chocolatier Chef David Funaro; my spread of Godiva goodies; Godiva chocolate liqueur with my glass of Simple Chocolate Martini I was invited to Godiva‘s New York City headquarters for the launch of their Lunar New Year chocolates with Godiva’s Senior Chocolatier Chef David Funaro. The spacious, streamlined, modern space are shared office space, an open kitchen and a model Godiva store so they could copy the displays to all of their shops around the globe. Along with tasting their standard but delicious line up of bonbons (as seen above) and their sweet Godiva chocolate martini. We were also..
The first real snowfall of the season had fallen yesterday in New York City and it’s almost the middle of December. I still can’t believe we’re nearing 2014. Since we’re all busy in some fashion and might be scrambling to buy gifts for our friends, co-workers and loved ones, here’s some food and home gift ideas. Wines, Spirits & Hard Ciders Various wines from Hahn Estates and Estancia Doña Paula Estate is a winery based in the Ugarteche, Luján de Cuyo, and Mendoza regions of Argentina that started in 1990. The 2012 Doña Paula Estate Chardonnay, Valle de Uco ($15)..
Pomme Palais, Chef Michel Richard, Set up for the tasting and the Opera Cake & Snowman Cake Earlier this afternoon, I was invited to Pomme Palais for a holiday cakes and pastries tasting with the humorous (and a bit of a jokester/womanizer) Chef Michel Richard. Cocoa covered grapes tart, Raspberry chocolate eclair, Fresh fig & marzipan tart All of the cakes and pastries were eye candy when you peer into the many display cases. Before we really got acquainted with the cakes, I had the opportunity to try the raspberry chocolate eclair that was balanced and the choux pastry still..
During our vacation to Barcelona, we stopped by Vioko since we’ve read the shop has some seriously good gelati (plural for gelato or an Italian version of ice cream) that has more than the basic flavors. Since we were near the beaches of Barcelona and it was a very warm, mid-October afternoon (the high temperature then was near 80°F) this was a great idea. Vioko is owned and run by pastry chef Lucila Baiardi (photographed above), an Argentine expat who studied the fine art of pastry around various kitchens in Europe and eventually settled in Barcelona to open this sleek,..
Last night was the 20th Anniversary of the Top Ten Pastry Chefs in the U.S. by Dessert Professional Magazine, hosted at the Institute of Culinary Education in Chelsea. This industry event had many recognizable food writers, editors and chefs that made it fun. In the midst of waiting for the announcement of the winners, Bobby Flay started a hoopla (my photo of him) as he made his presence for his winning pastry chef Clarisa Martino. Top 10 Pastry Chefs of 2013 This year’s awarded chefs are: Andy Chlebana, Joliet Junior College, Joliet, IL Bill Corbett, Absinthe, San Francisco, CA Christophe..
La Maison du Chocolat’s Duo de Ganaches: Andalouise & Yuzu La Maison du Chocolat is my longtime favorite, luxury French chocolate brand. If you read this blog long enough, I even went far enough to fly to Paris and have a tour of their impeccable chocolate factory back in 2010. Even though their Creative Director has left and Master Chef Nicolas Cloiseau took over last year, it’s interesting to see how Cloiseau would use his creative muscles and use the founder of La Maison du Chocolat, Robert Linxe, traditions. Keeping with the tradition of their annual, limited edition of Duo..
One of our most important and influential people, in my life at least, is my mom. Since Mother’s Day is a bit more than 2 weeks away (if you really don’t remember, it’s Sunday, May 12th) you still have some time to get her something before she’ll bite your head off. Here are some of my gift ideas: Chocolates Coco Délice Chocolates Coco Délice is based out in San Francisco, California, whose mission is to have great flavor and appearance, and utilizing the best possible, local ingredients. Their chocolates are French inspired by technique and dominantly French inspired with touches..
Chef/Chocolatier/Professor Francisco Migoya at StarChefs International Congress 2012 Hudson Chocolates creates, arguably, one of the most innovative chocolates I’ve encountered in recent years. They use high quality chocolates in various cacao percentages and high quality, locally sourced, fresh ingredients. What makes this brand innovative is by the shapes, flavors, and textures of the chocolates. Hudson Chocolates co-owned by Francisco Migoya and his wife. Mr. Migoya is a well respected pastry chef who had worked in prestigious restaurants like The French Laundry. He became an Associate Professor at the Culinary Institute of America (Hyde Park, NY) in 2005 and in 2011,..