Since 1969, restaurant, hotel, travel & other witty reviews by a handpicked, worldwide team of discerning professionals—and your views, too.




Villard Michel Richard dining room

Villard Michel Richard dining room

by David Farley

The Henry Villard Mansion, attached to the New York Palace Hotel, was buzzing like the days of yore on Wednesday, October 9. In the space that once housed esteemed eateries like Le Cirque 2000 and Gilt, the gilded-aged rooms of the mansion were packed with revelers to welcome chef Michel Richard.

Continue reading “Villard Michel Richard Opening in New York” »

A view of the vines from Masottina Winery in Italy

A view of the vines from Masottina Winery in Italy

By Anneli Rufus

Thirty miles north of Venice, the scenic route called the Prosecco Road — La Strada di Prosecco — is drawn in broad swatches of green on green on green: green hills, green vines, and yellow-green Glera grapes that flourish here and are destined to become the sparkling straw-colored wine that is the local specialty — and is Italy’s answer to Champagne.

Continue reading “Masottina’s Massive Eco-Friendly Winery a Work in Progress” »

Da Vinci 2007 Chianti Riserva DOCG

Da Vinci 2007 Chianti Riserva DOCG

Price: $25

Rating: 15/20

Region: Tuscany, Italy

Varietals: 85 percent Sangiovese, 10 percent Merlot & 5 percent other red grapes

Production: 1,500 cases imported

Alcohol: 13.5 percent

Tasting Notes: Located near the Tuscan town of Vinci, Cantine Leonardo da Vinci was established in 1961. It is a cooperative of 200 local winegrowers farming more than 1,200 acres in the Chianti region. A rich, full-bodied wine, the 2007 Chianti Riserva DOCG displays black cherry, Continue reading “Da Vinci 2007 Chianti Riserva DOCG – Wine of the Week Review” »

Aluminum Overcast taxiing

Aluminum Overcast taxiing

Time Traveling with Aluminum Overcast

by Alain Gayot

Soon, we’ll be able to purchase a flight on Virgin Galactic for a twenty minute trip to space. But for nostalgic flyers who prefer to travel back in time, a WWII era B-17 Flying Fortress is the ticket.

For about $400, you’ll be able to sample, for twenty minutes, what brave men experienced as they went on bombing raids over Europe. No first class, no business class, not even premium economy here. These aluminum war machines took ten svelte men in a very noisy, rather uncomfortable environment featuring cat walks, cramped spaces and no facilities.

However, thanks to the Experimental Aircraft Association’s devotion to promoting all things aviation past and future, a happy few will be able to board the Aluminum Overcast, a pristine and fully functional aircraft, during its inaugural 2010 national tour. Stopping at an airport near you, enthusiasts can simply take a ground tour ($5) and chat it up with the crew or embark on their very own mission. You’ll also be able to purchase memorabilia and learn about aviation overall.

Continue reading “Experimental Aircraft Association’s B17 Flying Fortress” »


Used-car MPG labels display EPA ratings and emissions for vehicles from the 1984 model year and newer

Used-car MPG labels display EPA ratings and emissions for vehicles from the 1984 model year and newer

The U.S. Department of Energy and the EPA recently introduced stickers that show the fuel economy and emissions of used cars and trucks, similar to those found on new vehicles. Available for download from, the web-friendly labels can also be posted online, and are designed for use by both dealerships and private sellers. Users can search for vehicles from the 1984 model year and newer; unfortunately, information for used plug-in hybrids and electrics is not yet unavailable.

Continue reading “EPA Develops MPG Window Stickers for Used Cars — Car News” »

A Chocolate a Day



With health benefits ranging from reduced blood pressure to improved brain function, dark chocolate is the new kale chip. But, there’s a catch. In order to be virtuous, chocolate needs to be eaten in moderation and have a cacao content of at least 65 percent.

If you have a hard time regulating your consumption, CACAOCUVEE is here to help. Cited by Oprah as one of her “favorite things” in 2012, the company’s DARK SECRET chocolate is packaged in daily bite-size portions. The handmade, preservative-free treats are crafted from 67 percent cacao combined with all-natural ingredients.

Continue reading “CACAOCUVEE DARK SECRET Chocolate – Review” »


Morumbi in Sao Paulo, home to Estadio Cicero Pompeu de Toledo, one of Brazil's famous soccer stadiums

Morumbi in Sao Paulo, home to Estadio Cicero Pompeu de Toledo, one of Brazil’s famous soccer stadiums

Winter is coming, and what better way to escape the cold than with a trip to South America? Starting December 16, 2013, American Airlines travelers can book nonstop flights to and from Los Angeles (LAX) and Sao Paulo, Brazil (GRU), as well as between Miami (MIA) and Curitiba (CWB) and Porto Alegre (POA), beginning November 21, 2013.

Continue reading “American Airlines Introduces Nonstop Flights between Los Angeles and Sao Paulo – Travel News” »

Francois Delahaye | Alain Ducasse | Sophie Gayot

François Delahaye, Hôtel Plaza Athénée general manager, chef Alain Ducasse with Sophie Gayot

by Sophie Gayot

Although I missed the 100th-anniversary celebration of Hôtel Plaza Athénée in Paris in April of this year, I was there last night for its “unofficial” closing ceremony. Yes, you read that correctly, the Plaza’s last day was September 30th. Rest assured, it is closing for a good cause: to reopen with even more grandeur (if that is even possible).

Continue reading “When the Hôtel Plaza Athénée Closes Its Doors” »



Beyond Bacon: Paleo Recipes that Respect the Whole Hog

By Stacy Toth and Matthew McCarry

(Victory Belt Publishing, 2013)






Beyond Bacon

Paean to Pork

Many people try to divorce the food they eat from the animals that provide the sustenance. Beyond Bacon is not for them. In this self-described “love letter to pork,” pictures of lively little piggies prancing through fields are followed by whole page, full-color photos of butchers attending to lumps of fat and muscle. With diagrams of cuts, nutritional analyses of brains, hearts and bone broth and a how-to guide for rendering your own lard, not much is left to the imagination here.

Continue reading “Beyond Bacon – Cookbook Review” »

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