Holiday Food For Thought

holidays holiday food
Faith Hope Consolo
Faith Hope Consolo

Some of the merriest holiday food moments come from visiting one of our dynamic new eateries. ‘Tis the season to nosh all that is new and noteworthy. Here are some new City spots that shine as bright as the 57th Street Snowflake.

Gino Sorbillo, one of Italy’s most legendary and beloved pizza chefs, at long last, launched the outpost of his flagship restaurant here in New York City at 334 Bowery, between Great Jones and Bond Streets in Noho. Gino Sorbillo Pizzeria is a 70+ seat restaurant with a similar menu of soft-crusted pies that he serves in Italy. Fun fact: “Gino Sorbillo is a Napolitan Pizzaiolo appreciated in the world for his verve and ecleticism. His father is the nineteenth of 21 children, all pizzaioli.”

BAAR BAAR by Chef Sujan Sarkar features his interpretation of modern Indian cuisine.  Baar Baar, which means “again and again,” is now open at 13 East First Street (Second Avenue) in the former L’Apicio space and is adorned with happy, vibrant colors. It is “a reimagining of the Indian love affair with all things spirited. A first of its kind Indian Gastro Bar that will challenge your perception of the subcontinent. Join us for this journey with India-inspired cocktails that pay homage to our beginnings and modern interpretation of regional Indian Cuisine”

JoJo has reopened at 160 East 64th Street and will no longer be a French bistro, it has now reemerged as a “casual farm to table spot” in a relaxed yet elegant dining experience in a quaint turn-of-the-century townhouse setting on the Upper East Side. The first of Jean-Jeorges’ restaurants, this neighborhood gem is now celebrating its 20th anniversary; the Contemporary French menu still features some well-loved original dishes. Just think, it is now one of 13 of his restaurants in NYC and counting! A culinary icon.

The Blue Box Cafe, located on the 4th floor of Tiffany & Co. at the 727 Fifth Avenue New York flagship store is what holiday dreams are made of. The store is the setting for Audrey Hepburn’s classic 1961 film “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.” Serving American classics that evolve through the seasons is an exciting take on signature New York dishes reinvented to be uniquely Tiffany. Gaze out at Central Park while in keeping with the store’s brand, nearly the entire café is decked in robin’s egg-blue. Even the china plates are dipped in blue. The Blue Box Café shares the fourth-floor with the Tiffany’s renovated home and accessories collection, baby boutique, vintage books and fragrance laboratory.

Start at the ground floor outside and work your way up to floor 4; Tiffany’s windows are inspired by Christmas in New York – the quintessential Tiffany holiday. Each window, like a magical jewel box, contains a glittering, festive scene that only Tiffany could conjure up. Where else would one decorate their Christmas tree with diamonds, or throw a lavish feast for fabulous friends with jewel-filled Christmas crackers, champagne, cakes and all, right in the snow? Another window display features Rockefeller Center with Prometheus in gold leaf and a jewel-trimmed tree with angels. The façade of the flagship lights up Fifth Avenue with an intricate light show inspired by an archival motif depicting a spray of diamonds, which framed the Tiffany Diamond at the 1939 New York World’s Fair. I can’t think of anything more Christmas!

Future food forecasting…..

London to NY seems to be trending. A private London venue, made famous for “celebrity hedonism” The Groucho Club to take 363 Lafayette Street and will include a bar, restaurant, party rooms, screening rooms and hotel suits. The NY outpost is to be grander then London and the members-only format will have 30 hotel rooms for members and their guests. “The Groucho Club is a private members club open to men and women formed in 1985. Dreamt up by a group of publishers as an alternative to stuffy gentleman’s clubs who wanted somewhere to meet and relax, they approached Anthony Mackintosh owner of ‘The Zanzibar’ – a members bar in Covent Garden – and Restaurant 192. Tony and his partners got to work and The Groucho Club was created. Premises were found in Soho, the bohemian heart of London, and the doors opened to a membership drawn from the Arts, Publishing, Film, Music and Advertising, many of whom were working in the area. It soon became the approved watering hole for the creative industries. With bars, two restaurants, private event rooms and twenty bedrooms, The Groucho Club is the benchmark for a new generation of members clubs both opening in the area and internationally.” To be an exciting dining experience for sure!

London hospitality specialists RHUBARB has restaurants and event spaces in sites like the Saatchi Gallery, the Royal Albert Hall, and the Sky Garden  will open two restaurants in the Hudson Yards development, in 2019 and these will be the company’s first international ventures. A restaurant is planned for 5,800 square feet on the fifth level of the central building that houses shops and restaurants. Another restaurant, bar and an event space will be on the two top floors of 30 Hudson Yards. I can’t wait to see what they will accomplish with their impressive pedigree of projects.

Happy Holidays & Happy Dining!

Faith Hope Consolo
Faith Hope Consolo, Chairman of Douglas Elliman’s Retail Group, writes the "Faithful Food" column for Total Food Service. Ms. Consolo is a leading retail broker and advisor who covers the national market. She is a specialist ranging from fine restaurants to fashionable fast foods. "To find the best retail space, You Need Faith." Email her at fconsolo@elliman.com