When I was unable to take part in the closing ceremonies of wd-50 in December of last year, I felt bereft and a bit guilty, believing that I had missed my last chance to enjoy the culinary wizardry of one Mr. Wylie Dufresne.  Fortunately, Mr. Dufresne created a limited tasting menu at his newly revamped casual dining establishment Alder this spring, and it quickly earned raves.  I've been meaning to visit Alder to give the tasting menu a try for some time now, and after a chance meeting with Mr Dufresne last week, I swung by his restaurant this weekend.

Ever since chef Alex Stupak announced that he was to begin serving a tasting menu at his revamped Empellon Cocina last month, I've been curious to see how Mr. Stupak's creativity and talent would translate in a 20+ course dinner of Mexican-influenced dishes prepared solely by him.

Executive chef Sean Gray and his kitchen staff at Momofuku Ko

For me, dinner at Momofuku Ko is a special event: it is akin to Sunday dinner with the family, where one is enveloped in love and comfort while enjoying good food and great company.  There was a time when I would eat at Ko once or twice a month, but that has not been the case of late: with the demands of the blog and a fixed budget I have to be selective, and that has meant fewer visits to Ko.

Chef Tony Kim and staff busy preparing the chicken sandwiches

From its inception so many years ago, the chicken sandwich has consisted of only three things: the chicken patty or filet, toppings and the bread.  It is a formula that has stood the test of time, a dish that can be tweaked and reimagined but eventually is immune to change.  Chances are, the chicken sandwich you eat in Daly City, California will be the same sandwich you enjoy in Danbury, Connecticut.

"Go West, young man!"

For its latest installment of its popular Late Night Dinner Series, the folks at Momofuku Ssam Bar heeded this sage piece of advice and invited the critically-acclaimed chef Jeremy Fox of California to headline the event.  Mr.

In my past visits to Chicago, I would stick with a particular itinerary, visiting restaurants which I have a personal relationship with in order to have a dining experience that is both familiar and dependable.  However, of late, I've been trying to explore the city's dining scene a little more adventurously, asking advice from friends both in New York and Chicago, and their recommendations led me to two little gems: Parachute and Boefhaus.

Next Restaurant: Bistro was such a phenomenal dining experience (Canard a la Presse, how I miss thee!) that I did not believe chef Dave Beran and his staff could eclipse that with Tapas.  Besides, I was not actually blown away with Next's homage to El Bulli a few years back.

In April 2015, partners Branden McRill, Patrick Cappiello and Alessandro Zampedri opened Rebelle, a modern French restaurant featuring the culinary talents of Daniel Eddy, who worked with Michael Psilakis before moving to Paris and joining chef Daniel Rose at the acclaimed restaurant Spring.  The restaurant is located next to the partners' initial venture Pearl & Ash in the Bowery, and features an extensive wine list created by Mr.

George Mendes is one of the greatest proponents of Portuguese cuisine in the United States: for the past six years, he has succeeded in marrying classic French technique with Portuguese ingredients and flavors to create a modern interpretation of Iberian fare at his Michelin-starred restaurant Aldea.  For his next project, Mr. Mendes went a bit more casual and opened a gastropub that specializes in Portuguese small plates or pesticos named Lupulo.

Clockwise, from upper left: Snow crab tostada; snow crab and lobster tostada; Mexican torta; house made guacamole and tortillas, aguachile, albondigas; quesadilla suiza; bistec con huevos; and smoked jowl bacon with habanero honey

Just as Mission Cantina's Vietnamese-style weekend brunch had gained popularity among New York's foodies, the whirling dervish that is James Daniel Bowien decided to scrap the Asian-influenced menu and switched to a Mexican brunch that could better complement the taco
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