Summer Recap: Michigan

With the brisk fall weather settling in, we’re sad that summer is officially over. As we look forward to leaves changing colors, we look back at our summer starting with our annual trip to Michigan.

Small towns, freshwater beaches, family, friends and fresh fruit make it a treat every year to visit Michigan. This year, we were especially excited to check out Hop Lot, a microbrewery that recently opened in Suttons Bay. In addition to a number of drink options and a small eat-in menu, one of Hop Lot’s highlights is a large yard with picnic tables and yard games. That’s right, what’s better than a pint? A pint while playing cornhole, KanJam or lawn bowling!

Kristina and her dad split a sampler. Each beer offered something different, with Highway Robbery being the favorite of the day. Hop Lot changes their beers regularly and often features ones with local connections, such as the Leelanau Exchange Bourbon Espresso Stout.

A trip to Michigan is not a trip without a visit to a winery. Along with Kristina’s good friend Laura, we visited Skipping Stones Cellars and L. Mawby for some Michigan vino.

Let’s not forget all the food we ate. We stopped by 9 Bean Rows in Suttons Bay for a delicious brunch, trying their famous lamb burger along with a tasty ham and cheese croissant. We also indulged in a greasy hamburger and fish sandwich at the popular J&S Hamburg in downtown Traverse City.

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When we were in the mood for something sweet, the simple solution was simple: visit Moomers!

Scream for ice cream!

Scream for ice cream!

What were some of your summer highlights? Share with us in the comments below or tweet us at @foodiepleasure!

Greenwich Wine & Food 2015

As with last year’s Greenwich Wine & Food, we always make sure to clear our calendars for this delicious event. Along with hundreds of other people, we huddled under the tasting tent to try samples from some of the area’s best restaurants.

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Along with great food and drinks, Greenwich Wine & Food offers celebrity chef sightings and interviews. During the day, we listened to two of our favorite judges from Chopped, Geoffrey Zakarian and Alex Guarnaschelli, share some of their favorite places to eat.

In addition the food and interviews, we were glad to run into some of our foodie friends including Chef Kennardo from the Ritz-Carlton Westchester and Kate Schlientz of Intoxikate. She introduced us to her new project, Pepper Pak, which we’re excited to check it out.


A big thank you to Shelley at Splash PR for inviting us and congrats to Serendipity Magazine for putting together another great event. We look forward to seeing you next year!

Dumplings Break

Recently, Kristina had a day off in the middle of the week, which meant one thing: time for lunch with a friend! Since we were both busy running errands, we wanted something quick and a little different. We decided on Xi-an Famous Foods, a well-known NYC spot that has grown from a basement stall in Flushing to a few locations across the city.

Although they are most known for their hand-ripped noodles, we went on a hot day so I opted for the Spicy and Sour Lamb Dumplings instead. They were reasonably priced and rich in flavor. The sesame seeds on top added the perfect texture to the tender dumplings.



I prefer noodles and broth when it’s cold out. As you can imagine, I’m glad fall is here so that I’ll be in the mood for noodles next time I visit Xi’an. There will definitely be a return trip!

Xi-an Famous Foods
14 East 34th  Street
New York, NY 10016

Homestyle Italian

Port Chester, on the New York/Connecticut border, has a wide range of food options. From sweet snacks at Paletas Fernandez to beach fare at bartaco, there’s something for everyone. We recently had a special night out at Tarry Lodge, which is owned and operated by Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich.

Tarry Lodge offers the perfect mix of cozy yet upscale: it has white tablecloths and excellent service, but also feels comfortable given its multi-room, homestyle feel. As we explored the menu, we were offered foccacia and olives which paired perfectly with Kristina’s Rosato. We decided to start with the Octopus al Forno, which came charred over a chickpea and cucumber salad. Though we don’t usually go for sausage, we tried the Sausage Pizza, which also came topped with tomato, mozzarella and tagiassca olives. We’re glad we went out of our comfort zone! We also enjoyed the Black Spaghetti with bay scallops, guanciale, and chilis.

Kristina can’t leave an Italian restaurant without tiramisu, and the one at Tarry Lodge didn’t disappoint. In addition to flavor, the portion size was very generous.

Tiramisu to end the meal

Tiramisu to end the meal

Have you been to Tarry Lodge or other restaurants in Port Chester? If so, share your thoughts with us in the comments!

Tarry Lodge
18 Mill Street
Port Chester, NY 10573

Back for Brunch

Recently, half of FP (Kristina) spent a Saturday with a little bit of fitness and a little bit of brunch.

It seems like you can find a new themed 5k race around every corner these days, and I have tried a few of them, including the Hot Chocolate Run and Color Me Rad. As you can imagine, the Chardonnay 5k caught my eye, despite my dislike of chardonnay (way too sweet!). A few weeks ago, I was up early on a Saturday run alongside the Hudson and celebrate with a glass of wine and cheese plate at the end.



Of course, a run wouldn’t be much fun without a tasty meal, so I met my college roommate at Petite Abeille for waffles and pommes frites after the run. The Belgian waffle was just as delicious as I remember, and the frites were a great addition. Petite Abeille has become a go-to when I’m in the mood for sweet brunch, so it probably won’t be long until another meal there.

Have you done any unique runs? How do you celebrate afterwards? Tell us in the comments below!

Petite Abeille
44 West 17th Street
New York, NY

Thursday Night Happy Hour

While we’re a duo when it comes to eating out, when it comes to craft beer, Kristina is a solo act. It’s only fitting that we learned about Women in Beer, an event that focuses on women’s contributions to the craft beer community taking place at Growlers Beer Bistro in Tuckahoe on this Thursday.


As part of Hudson Valley Craft Beer Week, the event will allow guests to sample craft specialties from 17 breweries, enter a free raffle for prizes, and interact with the women who work for those breweries in a variety of capacities, from brewing to marketing and distribution.

Growlers plans to provide one tap line to each female representative, giving attendees an opportunity to sample craft specialties from New York State breweries including local ones such as Captain Lawrence Brewing Company (Elmsford), Broken Bow Brewery (Tuckahoe) and Yonkers Brewing Company (Yonkers).

Others include KelSo Brewery (Brooklyn), Empire Brewing Company (Syracuse), Rushing Duck Brewing Company (Chester), Keegan Ales (Kingston), Ithaca Beer Company (Ithaca), Peekskill Brewery (Peekskill), Third Rail Beer (New York City), Newburgh Brewing Company (Newburgh) and North River Hops and Brewing (Wappingers Falls). Tap lines will also be reserved for women representing craft beers from around the country including Dogfish Head Brewery, Avery Brewing Company, 21st Amendment Brewery, and Allagash Brewing Company.

Growlers offers 17 taps with beers that rotate as the kegs run dry and the ever-changing menu provides true craft beer lovers with a way to try the best ales, stouts and lagers that the area’s – and the country’s – most innovative small breweries have to offer.

“We have beer events every Thursday night,” said Growlers owner, Eric Lorberfeld. “Normally, we’ll have just one featured brewery. The Women in Beer event is special because it will give guests an opportunity to sample a wider variety of beers than we’d normally offer at our events, but also because it will give customers a chance to talk to multiple women in the industry about their experiences and their breweries’ products and history.” Unfortunately, we have plans on Thursday, but we look forward to visiting Growlers soon. Let us know if you check out the event!

Women in Beer Event
Thursday, September 17, 7-10pm
Growlers Beer Bistro
25 Main Street
Tuckahoe, NY 10707

Getting Her Grill On

Many would say that summer ends after Labor Day weekend. However, 90 degree temps keep appearing in NY so it still feels like summer to us. We can only imagine that the hot temperatures can’t compare to competing on Chopped Grill Masters, though. Last month, Angie Mar, Executive Chef at The Beatrice Inn, not only competed but won the $50,000 prize and coveted title, Chopped Champion.

Angie Mar, Executive Chef at The Beatrice Inn. Photo credit to Ryan John Lee.

Angie Mar, Executive Chef at The Beatrice Inn. Photo credit to Ryan John Lee.

FP: Tell us about your experience on Chopped Grill Masters. What was the most surprising part of the experience?

AM: I had a great experience working on Chopped Grill Masters. The most surprising thing was that I fell in love with all the people I that I competed against and that worked on the show. It was such a great group to be surrounded by.

FP: How did you get your start cooking and barbecuing?

AM: I don’t barbecue. I think that is a huge misconception. Chopped Grill Masters isn’t a barbecuing competition, otherwise I’d never have competed or won! It’s a grilling competition. Grilling and barbecuing are completely different things, and it’s funny that people don’t know how to differentiate the two.

I started cooking about six years ago and have been really fortunate to have had great mentors. I specialize in whole animal cooking, and come from a kitchen background that works with wood fire grills and ovens. There’s something so primal to me about that style of cooking. I just fell in love with it.

FP:  Thank you for the clarification between grilling and barbecuing. When you’re at home, what are some of your favorite meals to cook for yourself?

AM: Beef. All day, breakfast, lunch and dinner.

FP: Where are some of your favorite places to eat in NYC?

AM: Is it too easy to say the Beatrice Inn? When I’m not at my restaurant, you’ll typically find me at Carbone or Pearl Oyster Bar.

FP: We’ll have to add those spots to our ever growing list! What are some of your guilty pleasures? We call them foodie pleasures, hence the name. ;)

AM: If we’ve had a long service in the kitchen and my blood sugar is crashing, you can often find me in the dessert station dipping French fries in ice cream!

FP: French fries and ice cream? Love the sweet/savory combo! Name 3 chefs you would enjoy cooking in the kitchen with and tell us why.

AM: Nigel Slater, he is a man after my own heart. His writing and cooking I find to be inspirational. My sous chefs, Joanna Garcia and Lucero Ramales. I’m so fortunate to have them as the pillars that hold my kitchen together.

FP: If you could get on a plane tomorrow and visit any place just for its food, where would it be?

AM: Sevilla, Spain. It’s one of my favorite places in the world and the place that I really found myself.

FP: Spain is an inspiring country for sure! If you weren’t a chef, what would you be doing? What are some of your non-cooking interests and hobbies?

AM: If I wasn’t cooking, I’d probably be doing something that bridges the gap between fashion and food. Outside of the kitchen I’m always enamored with fashion, especially menswear. But honestly, I can’t imagine life any other way.

FP: Thank you so much for your time. We wish you continued success!