Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Restaurant X and Bully Boy Bar "The Art of Dining"

Chef Peter Kelly's Restaurant X & Bully Boy Bar does not disappoint.  One of the things I like about Hudson Valley Restaurant Week is that it creates an amazing opportunity and value for restaurant goers to expand their dining palates and experience a wide range of cuisines.  If there is an art to dining Peter Kelly has included us in his masterpiece.

Outside it was a crisp November eve, inside we were greeted warmly by the Hostess who checked us in and went to see about our table. I ordered us a couple of Cabernet's at the bar and we warmed our hands by the wood burning fireplace, raised our glasses to the future and drank to the past.

Pan Roasted Diver Scallop with Fava Bean Ragu and Oyster Mushrooms
Our hostess returned momentarily, placed our drinks on a tray and escorted us to our table. Once seated we looked over the Restaurant Week menu , starting with the dessert selection first and then working our way towards the top. Our server came by and presented us with a Pan Roasted Diver Scallop with Fava Bean Ragu and Oyster Mushrooms as a starter compliments of the Chef.
For Appetizers we had the King Salmon Sashimi Roasted Pear & Shiso Coulis with White Soy & Nori Crumble and the Onion Soup Gratinée Black Dirt Onions, Aged Sherry & Gruyere

Onion Soup Gratinée Black Dirt Onions, Aged Sherry & Gruyere

The soup was well balanced, lightly salted, slightly sharp and slightly sweet.  The Salmon had a delicate flavor  with an added soft crunch by way of the Nori Crumble.
King Salmon SashimiRoasted Pear & Shiso Coulis with White Soy & Nori Crumble
Several times during the meal we were visited by staff as well as Chef Kelly inquiring as to how we were enjoying our dining so far, and whether we required any else. One nice touch was our server, who did not take our original drink order, knew that we were drinking Cabernet and brought the bottle over with her to our table when asking us if we would like another glass. That would be a resounding "yes".

For entrees, we had the Captain Lawrence Beer Braised Brisket, which was so tender it melted in your mouth.
Captain Lawrence Beer Braised beef Brisket
Chive Spaetzle & Cider Braised Red Cabbage

and the Sautéed Jumbo Shrimp Coach Farms Goat Cheese Risotto with Chiffonade of Basil, Grated ginger & lemon Zest. The shrimp were garlicky, moist and were arranged around the side of the plate resting on the creamy risotto.
Sautéed Jumbo Shrimp Coach Farms Goat Cheese Risotto with Chiffonade of Basil, Grated ginger & lemon Zest

For dessert we had the Pumpkin Panna Cotta and the Hudson Valley Apple Cobbler. The warm cobbler was my favorite.
Hudson Valley Apple Cobbler

Pumpkin Panna Cotta 

Chef did throw in a surprise, perhaps it was my camera flash going off that alerted him, because no sooner did our desserts appear, so did a Carrot Cake with his compliments, which ran a close second to the Cobbler in my opinion.
Organic Carrot Layer Cake
Mascarpone Frosting & Rum Anglaise
As we ended our meal we were satiable full, not just from the food, but from the whole dining experience. We left with a warm and happy feeling knowing we would be back again, and next time we will be sure to bring some of our friends too.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Emma's Ale House. Comfort Food After The Storm

Emma's Ale House, White Plains NY. Hudson Valley Restaurant Week Fall 2012
by Simon Feldman

The recent storms have been tough for many of us, some more than others. 
So, I was happy to find Emma's Ale house was able to open its doors this week. 

Emma’s offers great tasting comfort food and drinks. The staff are warm, friendly and attentive. Just the thing I was looking for post Sandy and the Nor-Easter.  I dined with my friend Elise. We like to share and started with a fresh and zesty Arugula salad with corn, pistachio and gorgonzola cheese and Lollipop Chicken legs, with a Teriyaki  glaze. So, unlike the usual wings places serve that are messy, these are very easy to eat and your fingers stay relatively clean.

One thing I had heard about was that Casey Egan the owner of Emma’s had just added a Draft Root beer ice cream float, the root beer (non alcoholic) was made  by Saranac Brewery  in Utica NY. One nice touch is that it’s served with two straws for fun sharing and  an additional side carafe of root beer, cause there's sooo... much ice cream in the soda fountain glass, once your half way through it, you just add what's in the carafe and extend your float experience. 

Our server arrived with our entrees. Somehow we  managed to pull our lips from the straws, long enough to make room for the Sesame crusted Salmon with sliced Brussels spouts and rice and Fish-n-chips.  Both fishes were fresh tasting, The salmon was cooked to order. The fillet batter crisp and not greasy. Both were moist and substantial size portions. Can anyone one say “left overs please” 

If that wasn’t enough, dessert arrived. Wow! I like molten chocolate cake like the next guy, but I have to say that the Krispy creme bread pudding with vanilla ice cream knocked my socks off. A must have if you have a sweet tooth.

So, if you can get over to Emma’s Ale house in  White Plains I think you’ll enjoy the dinning experience. Oh, did I mention they’re a great sports bar too. Lots of Ale’s and big screen TV’s, no of which will interfere with your dinning, unless of course you want them to.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Ultimate Foodie Day/Night continued...

Tuna belly is the big piece lower right.

I thought my ultimate foodie day/night was over, it started with the wine crush at Harvest, and was seemingly over at the Cookery's Cooktober fest last night, at Captain Lawrence's Brewery but turns out there was one more edible delight to
be had. This morning my landlord Vinny shows up and announces(no, the rents not due yet) "bring a plate, just got back from tuna fishing, here are some tuna steaks, and would you like some belly too? " Ha! will be cookin tonight.

Monday, October 22, 2012

What's your Ultimate Foodie Day ?

Autumn in the Northeast is certainly one of the most beautiful times of the year. In the lower Hudson River Valley the foilage along the Palisades Cliffs was an explosion of colors.

A perfect beginning for the ulitmate foodie day. The wine crush event held at Harvest on Hudson, Hastings-on-Hudson NY

Harvest on Hudson
The soft breeze out of the North carried upon it the acridly sweet scent of fermenting grapes

and the smokeyness of burning charcoal embers atop the CajaChina box.

Inside, good friends raised a glass toward the future and toasted the past. Owners Bruce Bernnachia and Angel Libertore of Harvest on Hudson put out an inspiring array of food. There was roasted pig, rabbit, goat and steak as well as pastas and cheeses.
The focal point of this event was the pressing of the grapes. 

Bruce enveloped in smoke. 

Friday, October 19, 2012

Chariot of Fire: Building a Mobile Wood Fired Oven

I'm happy to admit that I've eaten my fair share of pizza over the years. Recently I've become a fan of wood fired pizza. Perhaps its the intense heat that forms a perfect crust, or the slightly smokey flavor, either way I'm a big fan. Here is a story about the creation of a mobile wood fired pizza oven commissioned by my good friend Chef David Dibari and oven builder Peter de Jong of Fired up Kitchens.    Like us:

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Just 12 miles north of NYC, This should be an awesome food and music event. Plus Pizza! check out this video from one of The Cookery's earlier events.  Click on photo for facebook event page.