Wednesday, April 30, 2008

After the move...

After the move...
Originally uploaded by .edward

We made it just in time to attend an all Mozart program at Rose Hall / Jazz at Lincoln Center.

Kyrie eleison!

Many thanks to Yelp amigo and fellow 5-STAR 'Choker Steve M. for the invite and comp tickets! Although when we got there, 'someone' had taken all the remaining tickets in the "Steve M." envelope, the people at the desk were so accommodating and gave us "producer" box seats!

Overall a fun and uplifting evening!

Final pic at old apartment

Final pic at old apartment
Originally uploaded by .edward

Taking time out to have a delightfully smooth cup of Pike Place Roast, courtesy of Starbucks. Thanks Sbux for the free coffee! Wow, the studio is empty!

Moving is stressful, but so glad it's over. On to other opportunities!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Tuesday night at Artichoke

(10:15PM) Thank goodness I'm full from dinner, otherwise I would be one of twelve on line at Artichoke Basille's Pizza!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Being grateful on a wet, cold Monday

On this wet, rainy and cold Monday, I think it's important to stop and reflect of "wonderful and delicious" moments from the past week:
- In Central Park, finding the hidden cobblestone-lined walk and the beautiful flowers in Shakespeare's Garden.
- Experiencing the Spring flowers that have been blossoming throughout the city.
- Having my fan video for Artichoke's Broccoli Rabe sandwich picked up on NY Magazine's Grub Street blog.
- My Yelp review for Zipcar being voted "Review Of The Day".

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Saturday in Central Park

Saturday in Central Park
Originally uploaded by .edward

Taking in a perfect Spring afternoon nearby Belvedere Castle in Central Park.

Cherry blossoms peak in Central Park

Cherry blossoms peak in Central Park
Originally uploaded by .edward

(Great Lawn, Central Park)

Cigar moment

Montecristo #1 and a jack on the rocks on the nights in Hell's Kitchen.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Bummer to miss yoga today, but instead...

Bummer to miss yoga today, but instead...
Originally uploaded by .edward

The alternative isn't first visit to Red Mango near Times Square!

Fun at the dog run

At the dog run on Pier 84.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Riverside Park dog run

After walking along the Hudson River, we stop at the Riverside Park dog run at West 72 Street to relax and let the dogs unwind.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Wednesday is grazie Starbucks day! Free pike place roast coffee!

Wednesday is grazie Starbucks day! Free pike place roast coffee!
Originally uploaded by .edward

Danke, salamat and merci to Starbucks for providing me free Pike Place Roast coffee every Wednesday until the end of May!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Midway through the line at Artichoke

It's only 6.45pm, already a line 14 ppl deep and counting!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Central Park Oasis

Central Park Oasis
Originally uploaded by .edward

Between Belvedere Castle and the Delacorte Theatre, there is a stoned path that leads to beautiful flowers, tree-branched benches and the music of birds singing. It's tranquility in this loud, dense city.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Sunday night at Artichoke

Sunday night at Artichoke
Originally uploaded by .edward

Thanks to a talk thread on Yelp, we found out that our beloved Artichoke was closed as of Saturday night due to an "oven issue".

When I walked by Sunday night, this closed sign was posted (written on paper plate of course!).

Guess no pizza for me tonight!

Seen on Ninth Avenue

While getting dog food at Metro Pets in Hell's Kitchen, the ASPCA had a mobile adoption van with many adorable dogs and cats for adoption.

Nice to see people inquiring, donating but more importantly, adopting dogs and cats.

For more information, visit my favorite grassroots canine rescue

Adopt. Foster. Donate.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Full house at B-bar

A follow up to my earlier dining al fresco post. While B-Bar is usually a ghost town on winter
Afternoons, on this warm Friday in April, the old Bowery Bar is filled to capacity with people craving outdoor dining.

Fish tacos here aren't bad either...

The return of dining al fresco!

New Yorkers had a sneak peek of the warm summer weather to come. Warm weather in NYC = outdoor dining!

Walking by The Smith on Third Ave in the Village, I noticed they opened up the facade window! Vive la difference!

Enjoy the Spring weather while you can - it's going to be a HOT Summer!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

chain(ging) NY: American Apparel

In my (soon to be old) neighborhood, an American Apparel is opening up on 9th Avenue. I guess seediness is coming back to Hell's Kitchen!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

yay...starbucks pike place coffee *gratis* every wednesday until May 28! Grazie sbux!

yay...starbucks pike place coffee *gratis* every wednesday until May 28! Grazie sbux!
Originally uploaded by .edward

The benefit to attending the global unveiling/tasting of the new Starbucks pike place blend was receiving a card for free coffee every Wednesday until the end of May. That's at least $6 saved a week!

Out of the oven at Artichoke

During an early visit to Artichoke, I had the privilege to have co-owner Francis Garcia make me one of his special dishes that is not on the menu, a broccoli rabe sandwich. They had just opened and the Neopolitan, Sicilian and Artichoke/Spinach pies were still in the oven. He said he eats this sandwich when he's trying to lose weight from too much pizza.

Made on their fresh baked artisan bread, a light coating of their tasty tomato "gravy" (the same sauce they use in the pizza), perfectly cooked and seasoned broccoli rabe, a sprinkle of parmigiano-reggiano and then back in the oven to bake! The final touch Francis showed me was pouring a teaspoon of juice from the tray of broccoli rabe, "just to moisten the rabe and bread to make it a bit easier to bite into..."

Extracted from my post on the Yelp Talk Thread:
Artichoke Pizza in NY Mag/Grub Street
I talked to Francis while he was putting the final touches on prepping -- he's working on getting the hours on track (NY Mag misquoted him their opening time). But he did tell me he's working on the following:
- additional staff to come early morning to start prepping dough, chopping/grating the cheese, making sauce
- getting more menus printed (I'm having Francis & Sal autograph one for you Julia N.!)
- installing an air-conditioner in time for the warm weather

Some ideas I bounced off of him were (he's definitely open to feedback):
- A webcam looking from the kitchen Northward to the street -- so you can see how long the line is before you visit!
- Putting a Twitter badge appear on their website so they can text what time they'll be opening each day, in addition what items they have available.

But they'll be opening consistently for lunch soon!

The guys at Artichoke are truly passionate about their food...and a class-act all the way.

To Francis & Sal and the Artichoke crew...a big grazie!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Taco mishap

Tacos are not supposed to break when folded!
Originally uploaded by .edward

While having the Taquiza special at Mercadito on Avenue B (all you can eat Taquitos for $21) -- I experienced the supreme 'no-no' of a good taco. The soft, maize tortilla is not supposed to fall apart. It did with my el pastor taquito -- even before I took a bite!

Anyway, we dined on 10 plates of Taquitos (basically small two bite tacos). From their version of 'baja fish tacos' (deep fried mahi mahi), el pastor, tacos de pescados (with striped bass -- our favorite of the bunch), steak, chicken mole to shrimp tacos and a few others that I can't remember at the time. So all in all about 40 taquitos among 3 people.

While it seemed a lot, I wasn't overly stuffed at the end of the meal! For $21/person, the taquiza special is well worth it....and the margaritas and micheladas were divine -- BUT still not the best tacos de pescados I have had in NYC....

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Sunday morning reflection

Sunday morning reflection
Originally uploaded by .edward

The perfect way to start Sunday morning...a bright espresso, brazilian bossa nova (played on vinyl) and a few moments of equanimity at East Village gem, Abraço.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Who's in NY Magazine!

Two friends from yoga class emailed me that I was in NY Magazine's Grub Street for their Underground Gourmet review of Artichoke. Funny how they can still recognize me with street clothes on! Yoga + Pizza = Happy Me!

Read NY Magazine's review and interview with the owners of Artichoke Basille's Pizza & Brewery.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Inspiration: The Last Lecture

One year ago this week (April 12th to be exact), my father was admitted to the hospital. He had internal bleeding and after extensive tests and examinations, they determined he had an early stage of pancreatic cancer. After two pancreaticoduodenectomy surgeries in ten days (also called a Whipple procedure), he wasn't strong enough to recover. Dad passed away on May 12, 2007.

A friend forwarded me this You Tube video of a lecture given by Carnegie Mellon Professor Randy Pausch, who is dying from pancreatic cancer. In his moving talk, "Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams," Pausch talked about his lessons learned and gave advice to students on how to achieve their own career and personal goals.

This is truly inspiring to watch. It reminds me of all the great things I love about my father, family and life.

"We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand..."

To anyone reading this that has sees life through a lens of skepticism, fear, anger, resentment at the past or feels that life dealt them the wrong it. You'll figure out the "head fake".

To those people who are living their best life -- this will reaffirm what you already know!

Enjoy. :_)

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Seen across the street

Seen across the street
Originally uploaded by .edward

It's past 10pm on a Wednesday, twelve people (and growing) pining for pizza at Artichoke!

Poked my head in through the window and Francis shouts across the crowd, "Hey Ed, what are ya having? I'll make it for ya right now!"

Trying (hard) to exersize discipline, I politely declined; I tell him, "Tori told me no pizza for you're eating too much of that...and it shows!"

Steve from the counter then says, "So have a cauliflower fritter..." and hands me a warm piece of that crispy, crunch, tasty goodness!

Thanks for the loooove you guys!

Yelp Office Hours


Ducked away from work to drop by the new offices of Yelp NYC for Yelp Office Hours... an informal way to get to know other Yelp members and voice concerns, praise, or rant at "The Mayor" (who would do that?) Got some cool swag (a beautiful 'Yelp Elite hoodie,' yay!) and the chance to meet fellow Elite members face-to-face! Wish I could have stayed longer -- but even a short-visit was well worth it!! Big thanks to Sam P. and the Yelp NYC crew for the hospitality!
Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Trying the new Pike Place Blend

Trying the new Pike Place Blend
Originally uploaded by .edward

I ran down the street from work to be part of the national tasting of the new the Starbucks Pike Place roast! Attended a 5-minute led tasting AND I got hooked up with free coffee every Wednesday until May 28!

THANK YOU Starbucks!

FINALLY - AUTHENTIC So-Cal/Baja Fish Tacos in NYC!


Experienced our second "SPIRITUAL" foodie experience in a month (thanks to Yelper Michael F. for the penultimate adjective!).

Last week, we experienced the BEST pizza slice of 2008 at recently opened Artichoke Pizza & Beer. And today, we had what can only be described as the BEST fish taco we had outside of San Diego/Tijuana/Baja Peninsula!! Ah, memories of San Diego and Tijuana!!

Why was it the BEST?

- fresh mahi-mahi (not frozen).
- soft maize tortilla didn't break apart after the first (or second..or third) bite.
- shredded cabbage gave the taco enough crunch while allowing
- fresh cilantro leaves
- a dollop of fresh guacamole
- slices of lime and radish halves (to cool the heat of the EXCELLENT tomatilo salsa)

Where is this place? You'll have to wait until we get around to Yelping it...or ask real nicely.....stay tuned!
Posted by Picasa

Monday, April 7, 2008

Yelp (and future Yelp) ELITES!

    Hanging at Stain Bar to support Furyk's most excellent art!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Why aren't you on Twitter?

We're asked all the time, what exactly is Twitter?
Well, this excellent short video from Commoncraft explains Twitter in plain English.

So, now that you know -- why aren't you on Twitter?

Friday, April 4, 2008


Originally uploaded by .edward


Originally uploaded by .edward

At the Elliman Gallery in Williamsburg.

@ art gallery opening

In williamsburg - free beer!

zipcar adventure to williamsburg

zipcar adventure to williamsburg
Originally uploaded by .edward

we're off to williamsburg with carla, tina, tori - we're meeting up with fellow yelpers michael F. And steve "snarky".

TONIGHT - Season 4 Premiere of Battlestar Galactica

Yes, Friday is here and the final season of Battlestar Galactica premieres tonight (10PM / SciFi). By far one of the best television series ever that blends deep thought provoking story lines, substance, movie-budget special effects and a great ensemble cast in 60-minute show.

If you are into vapid, pop television where you can surf the internet and watch TV at the same time -- then Battlestar might not be for you yet....You need all your brain cells at full attention to comprehend the nuances, the hints, the sub-plots that go on during each episode.

Thankfully the season will be split into two parts, with the final 9 episodes airing in 2009.

But don't just take my word on why you should watch BSG, see the actors themselves tell you why on this David Lettermen Top 10 list.

And if you haven't watched an episode of BSG, don't forget to check out the short video clip "What The Frack Is Going On with Battlestar Galactica"

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Chain(ging) NY: Pinkberry

Chain-ge in NYC
Originally uploaded by .edward

Adieu to the Cottage on West 43rd Street. To be replaced with (yet) another Pinkberry.

Chipotle listing "calorie ranges" on wall menu!

Chipotle listing "calorie ranges" on wall menu!
Originally uploaded by .edward

To comply with NYC requirements, Chipotle Mexican locations are starting to list calorie ranges.

Wow, 710 calories for chips and guacamole! Guess who's going to spend more time at the gym after a chipotle fix?

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Spring is blossoming!

Spring is blossoming!
Originally uploaded by .edward

Seen on 9th street & stuyvesant sq

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

That day has arrived!!!

...penguins can fly!!!

HAPPY APRIL FOOLS! (courtesy of the BBC)

Perfect start to the day

Perfect start to the day
Originally uploaded by .edward

(spending a few precious moments at abraço on east 7th street)

Olive oil cake and a machiatto