When I returned to the CIA in the fall of 1999, two years after the publication of Making of a Chef wherein I described the humiliating service experience on my first day at St. Andrew’s restaurant, and Chef Czack lofted an overly generous tip onto my table with a look of withering disdain for my shoddy performance, he himself hosted me at the Danny Kaye Theater for an interview. I had been provided a pink beverage, strangely, as one almost always is given water. Chef Czack held out his hand to the drink. “Can you tell us what this is?” he asked me. I looked blankly at it, took a sip, looked out at the audience as a deer into headlights. I had not been expecting a sucker punch and confessed ignorance. “A Sea Breeze,” said Chef Czack, Read On »

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My inclination is to simplify. And with this, one of the oldest and sturdiest of cocktails, the old fashioned, should be just that, as Brad Parsons notes in his excellent book Bitters, and in my original post on it. Sugar muddled with bitters, ice, American whiskey, and a twist. Brad laments that it’s too often gussied up and over-muddled with orange and overly adorned. Brad also notes a nostalgia for the gritty undissolved sugar, but nevertheless recommends simple syrup in his. I am like-minded on all counts. Except. I splurged on these awesome cherries, “original” maraschinos. Also I really wanted to feature rye whiskey, here Bulleit rye, a whiskey on the upswing in America. And this great, great cocktail, the old fashioned, is perfectly suited to it. I’m doing what Brad suggests, only I’m adding a twist Read On »

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  Michael and Donna are in New York City for the week meeting up with book publishers and OpenSky, and Michael is judging Iron Chef. He asked me to do another repost today, so I selected one of Donna’s photos. Look forward to a new post from Michael on Monday.  —Emilia Originally Posted March 30, 2011 Orange Long enamored of black and white, my wife and collaborator has been working on a series of food shots featuring not food so much as the color of food. If you like her work, let her know or have a look at her gallery at ruhlmanphotography.com. Update: In response to a comment on the original post, Donna says she can make available reasonably priced 11×14 prints of this photo or any of her shots on her site. Email her there Read On »

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Photo by Donna Turner Ruhlman Long enamored of black and white, my wife and collaborator has been working on a series of food shots featuring not food so much as the color of food. If you like her work, let her know, spread this link on facebook or twitter, or have a look at her gallery at ruhlmanphotography.com. This last one reflects where we’ve been. Florida at the height of citrus season.  Great weather for the first time in a decade, excellent lunch at Cafe Morada, jaw achingly chewy conch fritters at Alabama Jack’s, an excellent meal at a new place on Palm Beach (my mom’s a real estate agent at Sotheby’s there) at Buccan, and delicious and genuine daiquiris at Nick and Johnny’s watching Duke’s final win (sigh). Back home and will resume posting Read On »

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Photo by Donna Turner Ruhlman Long enamored of black and white, my wife and collaborator has been working on a series of food shots featuring not food so much as the color of food. If you like her work, let her know or have a look at her gallery at ruhlmanphotography.com. Update: In response to a comment below, Donna says she can make available reasonably priced 11×14 prints of this photo or any of her shots on her site. Email her there or send me an email via the above contact tab, and one of us will get back to you next week. I’m on vacation from now until Monday, April 4.  Until then, check back in here every other weekday for another of Donna’s photos. As ever, I’m grateful to all who come to this Read On »

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