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







by Sophie Gayot

I first met husband and wife chefs Charlie and Kathleen Schaffer when they catered a movie premiere I attended. Not only was I impressed with their falafel, but I learned their cooking had also pleased many celebs both in Hollywood (Barbra Streisand, Eddie Murphy, Martin Scorsese, Kate Beckinsale, Julie Andrews) and elsewhere (Martha Stewart, Heidi Klum, Tom Brokaw). They even cooked for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who probably didn’t know the two former busboys first met while working at the Republican National Convention at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

Continue reading “Cooking with the Schaffers” »

My First Rub

on July 12th, 2010
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Steven Raichlen's Barbecue Steak Rub

Steven Raichlen's Barbecue Steak Rub

by Jeff Hoyt

I eat a lot of beef. From ground chuck to filet mignon, I enjoy it probably more than I should. Since my wife doesn’t eat red meat, I don’t get to go out to steakhouses very often. Frequently the steaks I enjoy are ones I grilled myself, next to a piece of fish for the Mrs.
Since I find the meat so appealing, I rarely cover its flavor with marinades or spices, and cook it as little as possible. I enjoy the texture, and the gnawing of the bloody, rare meat probably triggers some pleasure center handed down by my ancestors who hunted to survive and cooked their fresh kill over an open fire.


Food on the Move

on July 02nd, 2010
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The popular Kogi food truck in the LA-area serves up a fusion of Korean and Mexican cuisine

The popular Kogi food truck in the LA-area serves up a fusion of Korean and Mexican cuisine

by Martha Burr

Food trucks, especially of the gourmet variety, have become a recent fixture on the gastronomic landscape of LA. While neophyte hipsters may think that Kogi invented the taco truck, we can really trace it back to both Mexico and the Western “chuck wagons” that stretched from Texas to California in the 1860s.

Cultural historian Cyrus Farivar notes, “Given their origins in Mexico, a dash of Americanizations and a kitchen on wheels, taco trucks are the perfect trans-cultural metaphor for California. While taco trucks exist in other parts of the country, their presence originated (here). Raul Martinez is believed to have opened the first taco truck—converting an ice cream truck—outside of an East Los Angeles bar in 1974. He went from $70 in sales that first night to controlling a small empire of 10 King Taco restaurants and trucks around Southern California.”

Continue reading “Food on the Move” »



The end of McDonald's Happy Meals may be closer than you think

McDonald's Happy Meals may undergo a drastic change

By Jeff Hoyt


I admit to bribing my two-year-old daughter with television to get her to eat her dinner. Is it worse to use toys to get her to eat? Some legislators think so, when the meal in question is as bad for her as Sniper is to Dora.



County officials in Silicon Valley, California, have banned the inclusion of toys in any restaurant meal that has more than 485 calories, more than 600 mg of salt, or high amounts of sugar or fat. This seems to put the ubiquitous McDonald’s Happy Meal squarely in their sights. But my precious Jemma can’t ride her Elmo tricycle by herself through the Golden Arches drive-through. Is this the government getting too involved in parental decisions, or an effective method to combat childhood obesity in kid-friendly restaurants? We want to hear from you. Weigh in on our community forum on this and other hot topics.


Continue reading “Sad Ending for Happy Meals?” »



Restaurant impresario Pat Kuleto arrives on the red carpet

Restaurant impresario Pat Kuleto arrives on the red carpet

Monday night’s James Beard Foundation Awards at Avery Fisher Hall in Lincoln Center brought a lot of glory to a lot of very deserving chefs, restaurateurs and restaurants. 


Our newest favorite restaurant in Manhattan (overseen by one of our favorite chefs), Marea, took home the glory as Best New Restaurant. Congratulations, Michael White, you and your team definitely deserve kudos for opening a high-end seafood emporium during a recession and maintaining the highest level of service and cuisine in a consistently welcoming environment. We also love Marea’s sommelier Sophie Leibowitz, who introduced us to a fabulous wine, the 2005 Argiolas
Korem from Sardegna.


  Continue reading “The 2010 James Beard Awards” »



Samples of local cuisine

Samples of local cuisine

By André Gayot

As the world gets global and progressively engulfs its denizens into a single one-fits-all mold, it’s an encouraging sign that here and there some rebels are proclaiming a personality of their own. Interestingly enough, the affirmation of such an individualism stems from the food, not as a raw material, but from the understanding we have of it and the procedures we invent to process it.

I had the privilege to observe such a comforting manifestation where last week in Puerto Rico when I attended the third annual “Saborea” (Spanish for “Savor” or “taste) event. It takes place along a sandy beach fringed with coconut trees on this American-style Caribbean island. The tropical setting is enough to tell what is reasonable to expect under these latitudes. Indeed, location, tradition, and production determine ipso facto the limits of the gastronomy. But imagination, this essential human addition, can transcend—or not—the regional capacities.

Continue reading “The Global Show of Savor” »

Samples of local cuisine
Samples of local cuisine

By Yaira Solis Escudero


The third annual Saborea Puerto Rico: A Culinary Extravaganza!, the creative food event, was just held at the famous beach Punta del Escambrón in the The Millenium Park in Old San Juan.


Besides having a good time and eating well, the purpose of Saborea is featuring Puerto Rico as an unparalleled culinary destination throughout the Caribbean. The island tourism has been strengthened by the notable growth and development of the gastronomic sector. The event also served to present the new generation of Puerto Rican chefs.



Continue reading “A Weekend Full of Puerto Rican Flavors” »




Eve is among the Chicago dining destinations challenging convention this Easter. Photo courtesy of

Eve is among the Chicago dining destinations challenging convention this Easter. Photo courtesy of

by Jennifer Olvera
Easter is right around the corner, and we’re mighty excited about the ridiculously tasty-sounding—not to mention, atypical—options out there. Since we like a bit of savory with our sweet, we’ve set eyes on the three-course spread at one sixtyblue. You can choose between items like grilled shrimp with curried cucumber-yogurt sauce and fried chickpeas and slow-cooked pork belly with buttermilk biscuits and spicy sausage gravy. From there, opt for a flat iron steak with braised spring radishes, fiddlehead ferns and spring onion gratin or, perhaps, ricotta-English pea ravioli with Parmesan gratin, followed by sorbet with rosemary shortbread. The cost is $39 per person, and a waffle bar ($12) is available for kids under 12. On the other hand, Eve’s $32, three-course brunch features the likes of Toulouse sausage with caramelized onions and sauerkraut; slow-cooked Swan Creek Farm ham with fennel-poached eggs and caramelized fennel; and eggs Sardou with soft-shell crab, creamed spinach, poached eggs, crispy artichokes and béarnaise. Are you thinking Greek? Then head to Taxim, where the $55, five-course lineup includes items like kokoretsi, charcoal-grilled caul-stuffed offal; magiritsa, hearty lamb offal soup; tsouknidopita, nettle pie with house-made phyllo, sheep’s milk butter and feta; and tsoureki, braided sweet bread baked with a red-dyed egg. For the main course, it’s on to whole charcoal-roasted, milk-fed spring lamb. Seatings are at 10:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Want some more ideas on where to eat? Check out our comprehensive list of the best Easter Brunch restaurants in Chicago

Top 10 Brunch Hotels in the U.S.

Top 10 Brunch Hotels in the U.S.


Spring into spring with help from our March edition of The Food Paper newsletter!

Get started with a lavish meal at one of our Top 10 Brunch Hotels in the U.S. or cook up something new from chef Skye Gyngell’s cookbook Favorite Ingredients.

Don’t forget to eat your greens! Check out our reviews about artichokes and asparagus, as well as our tasty recipe for roasted asparagus with chili vinaigrette.

In addition, we have everything you need for March 17, including our St. Patrick’s Day Guide with a list of our Top 10 Irish Beers, a Travel Guide to Ireland and much more!

Top 10 Irish Beers

Top 10 Irish Beers

Our Tastes Newsletter for March has been published! Spring Fever is here!



Celebrate everything that is green! Read our guide to St. Patrick’s Day, featuring the Top 10 Irish Pubs in the U.S., the best pubs and bars near you and the Top Irish Beers. Make sure to check out the best places for Easter Brunch, our list of the Top 10 Castle Hotels Worldwide, The Country Cooking of Ireland cookbook review,  the Top 10 Small SUVs and much more!

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