To say we were pleasantly surprised by Apotheca is an understatement. We were really impressed by the decor, you walk in to a very sexy lounge area then go down the stairs to the wine cellar where the dinner tables are set. The food is all of the highest quality, creatively prepared and the presentations are on the highest level. The Chocolate and Foie Terrine was not only beautiful to look at it tasted better than sex…..the Ancovy from Canabrai were really a special treat. Lori had the Monk fish wrapped in bacon and everything is better in bacon! I had the suckling pig which really was not my favorite. The deserts were OK, next time I think, I’ll just have another Foie for desert….LOL There will be a next time because Lori dreams of the Mazapan of Toledo. There is a great place for it, I’ll discuss in another post. Please do visit Apotheca it is a very Special!!
Prior to our visit to Tuscany we had discussed some new restaurants in the area with our local friends Bianca and Enzo. They had mentioned a place had opened but they have not tried it yet. So prior to leaving Lori decided we are all going to Babette. Locate in the Casale di Brolio outside the small town of Castiglion Fiorentino. This is remotely located but the roads are good and it’s easy to find.
We arrived at Babette and it was a very quite evening because of the rain and the time of year, Tuscany really starts to slowdown in October. It’s an attractive place with clean Tuscan appearance. We started the meal with an amazing amuse–bouche of foie gras. It was nice to have four of us dining so we had a chance try many dishes. Our appetizer was scallops that were perfectly seared and presented with several sauces. I’m not sure how I felt about the Foie and scallop combination. The Pasta course was Pici a local hand rolled thick spaghetti with Wild Boar ragu its was excellent and on my list of must have again dishes. I had a really interesting suckling pig in a Chocolate sauce, Lori had a perfectly prepared Sea Bream, Bianca an amazing Monk Fish and Enzo his standard Beef Fillet which was so tender no knife was required.
We did of course save room for desert, this is a good plan!! The deserts were on par with any Michelin 3 star restaurant. The presentations were amazing and they tasted even better than they looked. The Tiramisu was absolutely the best!! Perhaps my favorite all time desert!
When in Tuscany or even within a 12 hour flight don’t miss a dinner at Babette. The service was excellent and they do speak English well for those that are concerned.. This is truly fine dining in Tuscany.
We decided to have dinner out locally in Delray Beach this evening. Brule Bistro has gone through a major renovation the past year. It was previously a self serve lunch and to-go place. Now it is a full service Bistro. Overall the food was pretty good. The wine list was adequate although the servers really have not had any formal wine training which is to be expected at a small establishment. The Zucchini blossom tasted great however arrived at the table a little on the cool side. The Salad with goat cheese was good but a little bit of a cliche. I had the Tile fish special with lobster risotto and wine sauce reduction. The fish was excellent and cooked to perfection. The risotto was good however the wine sauce was a bit overpowering. Lori had the Diver Scallops which she loved I tasted them and they were ok, a bit over seared their not supposed to be “Southern Fried” Scallops. To the chef’s credit they were not overcooked in the middle and still remained tender. For desert we had banana bread pudding with Bourbon ice cream it’s excellent! We will definitely return and recommend you give it a try. This is about as good as it gets in Delray Beach.
Here are the details of our lunch
Crème fraîche de Normandie, onions pickles, Banka Truit’eggs
Fried black sausage form Pays basque, apple compote, mustard sauce with lime and cream
Vegetable broth with leeks and smoked potatoes
Maquereau Tataki, mustard shoots, dill, apple juice vinaigrette and buckweat
Lamb saddle from Lozère, olives from Kalamata, sheep milk yogurt & herbs, celery purée & chips, watercress, pigeon juice
& lamb neck with raisins de corinthe
Vacherin : vanillia ice cream, meringue & passion fruit
Pineapple & litchees salad with lime
Mango with crispy honey & pistachio.
Le Comptior is situated on a very busy corner in the Latin Quarter idea for dining outside when weather permits and enjoying the favorite Paris pastime of people watching. Inside the bistro is small and attractive. The food however is excellent!! I suggest if you want to avoid waiting for a table you arrive for an early lunch about 1130am and wait in line until they open. There is always a line ever since Anthony Bourdain featured the place it has been very popular with tourists from around the world. Do not fear, they have not become a tourist trap!! I stared with a Squid sauteed with sweet onions and a balsamic reduction which was absolutely fantastic. The main was a simple roast beef cooked rare and so tender I cut it with a fork. The mashed potatoes were velvety smooth loaded with that wonderful French butter. The desert was a nice waffle accompanied by some fruit compote. I might suggest a crepe for desert next door at L’Avent Comptior. I will discuss that in detail in another post.
I can’t wait to return and try some more of the extensive menu!!!
Full Kee is what you expect to find in any Chinatown in a large metro area such as NY. The food is all home made and excellent. The Noodle soup with roast pork is amazing! Wonton are made fresh daily and very good. This is a great place for a good and cheap meal.
We always stop by to have a souffle at Le Souffle at least once during our visits to Paris. Located at 36,rue du Mont Thabor,it is a little tricky to find and even the taxis have trouble at times. Although some say it’s touristy and the service is lacking. We have had nothing but lovely experiences here.
The Grand Marnier is our favorite accompanied by a bottle of Grand Marnier and encouraged by the staff to pour it on how can you go wrong.
If you desire more friendly and prompt service, I recommend bringing a beautiful women with you… the Frenchmen love them. Vive la différence
Tél. : 01 42 60 27 19
36 rue Mont Thabor
75001 Paris (France)
It’s been a while since I had lunch at la Foutaine de Mars. This is a classic French Bistro with very solid food. The quality of the food is very good and preparation professional. The portion size is large probably geared towards the American tourist crowd. I had an appetizer pastry stuffed with goat cheese it was excellent and large enough for 4 people. The Scallop entry also was very good, cooked to perfection and large. I certainly would recommend it anyone that likes a lot of good food.
We go to Angelina on a cool day to warm up with a cup of their world famous “Hot Chocolate” it tastes similar to a gourmet chocolate bar melted and served with a side of whipped cream. They are also well know as a place for “Ladies to Lunch” while taking a break from wearing out their husband’s credit cards. While it’s our primary “Hot Chocolate” destination the food is also quite good as well.
We learned about S.Anna from some locals siting besides us at Da Francisco. Since then we have visited several times. S.Anna is a nice local everyday Italian restaurant. Pasta are house made and great. The anti-pasta bar offer a good assortment and is very good. Once in a while they have this special cake that they bake it’s really a treat. I can’t think of the name of it but I do remember having it a couple of times then being disappointed one day when they ran out of it. Do visit for solid and unpretentious Italian food.
While staying in the lovely countryside of Tuscany, Lori decided to have me, drive us to Florence to visit a restaurant recommend by her doctor that is known to love his food. I was reluctant to drive in Florence because this usually involves driving down one way streets the wrong direction , driving in traffic restricted areas and a host of other moving violations. This time was no exception so after the “drive” we arrived in Florence, parked the car and found IL Latini.
IL Latini is known for their Florentine Steaks which can be some of the best beef found in the world. Two of the best steaks we have eaten have been Florentine however sadly to say this was not going to be one of those heavenly days. The restaurant is very casual, crowded with many tourists and the servers really did a great job of working the crowd. We ordered the Steak , Tuscan beans and salad. The kindest comments I have was that the food was OK or perhaps they had an off day.
Across the street from the entrance to the Vatican Museum is Lori’s favorite gelateria in Rome. In fact I think it’s religious experience her! Old Bridge is one of the top shops in Rome their specialty is fruit flavors. We learned about this shop many years ago from a cab driver late one evening heading back to the hotel when Lori decided it was time for one more Gelato. We always stop here as well as Gelareria dei Gracchi my old favorite. I have a new favorite to introduce Lori to on our next trip. While doing this post, I notice they have plans on selling franchises…I’m ready.
Yes! there are several great Susi restaurants in DC. Uni is locate about 6 blocks away from my favorite Taro. The fish is pristine and wasabi fresh ground. They have a great assortment of hot and cold appetizer including on of our favorite, beef tataki. They also feature a great selection of Japanese beer and sake. The surrounding are not as cool as Taro and perhaps the food not quite at the level of excellence but still indeed excellent . Uni is a much friendlier restaurant that allows for interaction between client and chef also more reasonably priced.
I have not been to Germany lately and after arriving 5 hours late, I was hungry and ready to eat at 3pm local time. Being after lunch and prior to dinner, options are limited. I decided to try a landmark the Hofbrauhaus, it’s exactly what you would expect from a typical German Beer House. You stroll in and sit down anywhere you want at these huge communal tables. A waiter will come up and bring you a liter of BEER (the Germans always drink it in liter size). I decided on my favorite hauxen and pretzel. The food was not really good so I’d recommend sticking with a BEER and pretzel.
Driving up to the Sundy House is like driving up to a quaint B&B locate in a tropical paradise. They have an elaborate Sunday Brunch buffet inclusive of Champagne and Bloody Marys. The food quality and preparation are very good. I enjoyed everything with the exception of the Oysters, they were farm raised and not very good. I mentioned it to the management on a survey they handed out and they responded positively that they were not totally please by them and are looking for another source.
We have never stayed at the Sundy House B&B however the ground are very tranquil. We definitely recommend the brunch, bring your large pants and enjoy.
Located in the heart of the Marais one can usually locate L’as Du Fallafel by the line in front. You maybe taken back at first by the person collecting for your Fallafel in advance while you are in line but i can assure that this is standard procedure. It’s worth the wait in line for a take away or for a table inside. This is the best Fallef you will have even by Middle eastern standards. This is certainly the best 5 Euro lunch you can have in Paris…I highly recommend it, I have never been disappointed!
L’As Du Fallafel
34 Rue des Rosiers, 75004 Paris, France +33 1 48 87 63 60
Sunday Brunch at the Atlantic Grill, Delray Beach Florida:
Located in the Seagate Hotel the Atlantic Grill is an attractive looking place. The food was hit and miss, basicaly there was no consistency from the kitchen. Ingredients were of average quality and preparation hap hazard. The service was pleasant however unprofessional. My poached eggs arrived very overcooked when I returned them they were returned in better condition however the English muffins were soggy and cold. Many of the dishes lacked any inspired flavor including the Trio Benedict and Fried Brie. The presentations were not bad and Lori’s lobster frittata was pretty good although very small for 19 dollars. The Pineapple Cake with Coconut Ice Cream desert was made the prior day and was very soggy. We recommend coming in for happy hour this way you can enjoy the lovely ambiance and some of appetizers.
I checked out Bobby Flay’s (grill-boy as Ari of Entourage calls him) new venture in the burger joint frenzy. I grabbed my camera and walked a mile or so on a great day in DC. Once I arrived at Bobby’s, I viewed the menu on the wall and ordered several items including a milkshake which I don’t have very often. You order, pay, sit and wait for your food to arrive.
The shake arrived first, disappointing there was an option for “REAL” whip cream however no option for a “Real” shake. It was basically flavorless and tasted one step below a McD’s mix shake. The burger arrived with the fries next. The burger was good but nothing I’d go running back for. The fries were not worth eating, in fact, I stopped at FIVE GUYS for some very good fries to fill that square on the way back to the hotel. My recommendation would be take the Bobby’s Burger to go and get some fries at FIVE GUYS for a good meal.
Located just a few steps off the Royal Mile this seafood-er serves only the finest fresh local catch. It’s elegant modern interior is as stylish as the food presentations. The oysters are amazing served with a Wild Boar sausage on the side. The daily lunch and prix-theater specials are a good value. All of the fish is cooked to perfection and served with attention to detail. The Carmel Sundae for dessert should not be passed up!
We received a recommendation from a friend of a friend that has sent a lot of time in Perugia. We called our Italian friends and asked them to join us for dinner. I set the GPS in the rental car and off we went. After the usual amount of animated conversation and circling we arrived. We were pleasantly surprised by a charming exterior and really impressed by the romantic setting inside. It was love at first sight for me and first bite for Lori. All of the dishes were expertly prepared and presented in a modern yet approachable manner, very fitting for the location. All of the pasta dishes were homemade and superb. The eggplant starter was amazing!! The local fish was pristine and melted like butter in your mouth. The Tuscan white pork was almost as good as sex.
All around an excellent dinner at a very reasonable cost. We all agreed that is was definitely a fine recommendation.