Click on Angelina for my story on Lebanese entrepreneur Kamal Mouzawak, founder of Lebanon’s first farmers’ market, Souk el Tayeb, and restaurant Tawlet, who now launches Beit Douma, a new kind of hospitality venture with an eye toward preservation. 


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WSJ-Magazine-Cover-October 2015


Click on Kate for my story on José Ignacio, Uruguay, chef Francis Mallmann & the restaurateurs from La Huella who are bringing their South American heat to U.S. soil this fall. 

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I have running lists: lists of places I want to go and restaurants I want to dine at. Vietnam, Tokyo, Mexico City. Paris is not on that short list. It’s not just that I’ve visited it plenty…but that, though perhaps incomprehensible, I have bad memories of the City of Lights. The near-millennium details are too sordid and cruel to reconsider, but they were enough to make me turn my back on gaie Paris for 15 years.

Chateaubriand Berry Gazpacho

Still Paris has a way of pulling one toward it. Friends who live in attic apartments; girls who move there to write poems and chase dreams. Layovers that tease and must be indulged and elongated. Neo bistros that serve 8-course meals for 70 euros. After all, why stay in Paris for one night when you could stay three? Why visit the city on a Monday when Le Chateaubriand is closed and not extend your stay to accommodate the restaurant’s schedule? Why not?


This was the dinner I had at Inaki Aizpitarte’s 11th arrondissement néo bistro. Probably what struck me most was the subtlety of his dishes. He seems to trust the ingredients to stand on their own two feet; to speak for themselves. He didn’t hide behind a dusting of Maldon sea salt or lemon zest (finishing touches I adore, lean on and seek out as flavor profiles in restaurants). The ride was more about texture and gentle layering of components rather than a highly seasoned finish, making the experience elusive and masterful. Instead of the aromas pulling you toward a dish, it’s up to the diner to reach out and start the dialogue to reap the quietly confident reward.


Last night I went to Inaki’s pop up at Contra here in NYC and the Basque chef brought that finesse with him, bolstered by chefs Jeremiah Stone & Fabian von Hauske and their replete understanding of the sophisticated New York palate. The transient nature of pop-up restaurants or guest chef dinners often means the dishes are cobbled together or lean too heavily on their host restaurant. Combinations that work in a chef’s home regions feel watered down when an ingredient is just off or the kitchen is not their own.

But last night was not so. It was spot on and rang true of Chateaubriand, particularly with shelling beans in bright elderflower butter vinaigrette. Chicharones (which I usually skip) served with creamy avocado & “ceviche” granita, melted on the tongue, were surprising and astounding. Maroon squab with broccoli and lovage looked bloody but tasted silky and sweet within with seared crisp skin. Jeremiah and Fabian also have that quiet confidence: knowing when to steer and when to let the apt guest driver take control. Then at the end there was an unequivocally Chateaubriand touch: cassis sorbet, here served with fried sage leaves and a solid dusting of cacao. The last dish of the night was all Contra: Fabian’s almond coffee sobayon. It was all egg, but without any irony.

I guess for Inaki’s famous Tocino de Cielo–the candied, caramelized egg dessert–the Contra guys know, let it be an excuse–for me, for you, for them–to go to Paris.

Le Chateaubriand, 129 Avenue Parmentier, 75011 Paris, France



Restaurant photos borrowed appreciatively from the one and only Todd Selby at The Selby.

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For the summer issue of Grey, I decided to explore the reality of being a carnivore. What I thought would be a simple story, I soon realized was one very difficult to tell. There is so much controversy, hypocrisy, taboo and misinformation about our food system, that trying to summarize my navigation of it was a monumental undertaking. In the end, I hope this essay conveys one person’s attempt to do what is right for her…and by her, I mean me.

Thank you Zachary Zavislak for these stunning images and Zak Pelaccio and Patrick Milling Smith of Fish & Game Hudson and Jeremy Peele of Herondale Farm in Ancram, NY.

And, for my Uncle Sally, if you are reading this, please try not to hate me just because we may not see things the same way. I loved Chico and I love you.










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I just cleaned out my fridge.

I found an old onion and some shrinking shallots, some firm, fresh garlic, tired kale, perfect tomatoes and a week old bag full of herbs from a friend’s garden, sealed properly and still verdant and crisp. I sautéed the onion and started to add a good glug of olive oil as usual, but then decided to go another way. I added some coconut oil to make up the difference. Sliced shallots and minced garlic, tomatoes in rough chunks to sizzle (with most of their seeds down the sink) on high heat with 4 big pinches of sea salt to draw out their flavor and make the shallots sweet.

2 tbs coconut oil
1 tbs olive oil
1 old onion
3 “vintage” shallots
3 cloves of taught garlic
5 leaves of wilting, yellowing kale
2 perfect tomatoes
1 large pinch of dried coconut
a bag full of herbs from a friends garden (basil, scallions, sage) fresh and crisp
random spices (such as nutmeg, za’atar, crushed fennel seeds, turmeric)
lemon zest & juice
garlic yogurt (minced fresh garlic, greek yogurt, sea salt, lemon juice)
lots of sea salt

I added ribbons of sideways sliced kale, rib and all, and covered it with a cutting board for 2 minutes so the kale would steam in the tomato juices. Meanwhile, I mixed a bowl of Fage Greek yogurt with minced garlic, sea salt, olive oil, a squeeze of lemon juice and a tiny drip of honey. My eyes rested on my much neglected spices, sitting in that small close cupboard next to my salt, so I shaved some nutmeg, ground some fennel seeds and tossed some za’atar into my hodgepodge sauté and added some dried coconut. One last squeeze of lemon for good measure. Serve in a bowl with a lot of garlic laden yogurt. Serve with some stale toast or old rice.

It took about 14 minutes. It was almost a curry…and was remarkably delicious. The lesson here, kids, is stock your fridge & cupboard well with hearty greens, like kale and radicchio that forgive you for forgetting them, then force yourself to use them even at the last minute…and then let them sing for your supper.

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Summer is in full swing and a July 4th jaunt from the North Fork of Long Island to the beloved Springs lent some inspiration. Knowing better than to show up as an empty handed houseguest and amorous of the tie-dye-colored carrots and local flora (sunflowers, herbs, radishes), I went on a shopping spree at the North Fork farmers markets, where prices are a fifth of those in the tony, traffic-mobbed Hamptons.

This is how I’ve been cooking fish lately, and it couldn’t be more simple, healthy or gorgeous, to the eye and on the tongue. It works with almost any whole fish (I used upstate trout when I was there and Montauk bass while on Long Island), and a variety of veggies can work too, such as fennel or radishes can fill in for the carrots; leafy greens like collard or chard would be great too, though no need to roast them before adding fish–just a quick sauté with olive oil and garlic on stovetop before adding the wine, fish, herbs and lemon.

ceramic knives

Ingredients (serves 2)
1 sea bass, or other whole white fish
1 bunch rainbow carrots, scrubbed in cold water but not peeled or topped
½ onion, sliced into semi circles
fresh ground mustard seed
2 cloves fresh garlic, pressed
flat leaf parsley
lemon, juice and peel
olive oil
1 cup white wine

Heat oven to 450°. Lay carrots and onion slices in a roasting pan and pour 1/4 cup olive oil over them. Sprinkle sea salt flakes, za’atar, fresh ground cumin and mustard seed, Aleppo pepper, ginger and lemon zest over and roll carrots to distribute spices, etc. Roast in oven for 10-15 minutes while preparing fish.

Rinse fish in cold water and pat dry with paper towel. Drizzle interior and exterior in olive oil and rub gently to coat. Generously salt and pepper interior and exterior of fish. Lay basil leaves and lemon rounds in fish cavity.

Remove carrots from the oven and stir slightly. Pour 1 cup of white wine over carrots and onion slices. Add parsley stems, torn leaves and garlic. Lay fish over carrots and garnish fish with lemon rounds. I added a last dusting of spices because I like my flavors punchy. Cover pan with tinfoil and bake for 12-15 minutes or until fish meat is opaque. The juices from the fish will mix with the wine and spices creating a nice broth to spoon over top. Serve whole fish on platter surrounded by carrots and garnished with fresh herbs.

The next day, add aioli (homemade mayo + garlic), capers and parsley to cold fish leftovers for a lunch salad beside cold carrots.

Suddenly Last Summer

All plate ware and beauty thanks to Ian & Emilie Irving (aka @_xenomania_), except the shot of Liz from Suddenly Last Summer. To leave a comment, please click here and scroll down to where it says “Leave a comment.”


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