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the sweet scoop
the sweet scoop
More than 40 chefs, hundreds of hungry carnivores, thousands of pounds of meat. Last Saturday’s Meatopia on Randall’s Island was an ambitious culinary spectacular where whisky and beer flowed freely and meat reigned supreme. Event founder Josh Ozersky seriously upped the ante from last year’s meat-filled fest and successfully executed one of the most organized and enjoyable food events of the year—in spite of some wet weather.
Some of the highlights and best bites from Meatopia 2012:
The talented lineup of chefs and pit masters showcased at this year’s “City of Meat” (including Marc Forgione, Alex Guarnaschelli, Franklin Becker, April Bloomfield, Naomi Pomeroy and many others) focused on utilizing whole animals, and dished up a dizzying array of meats prepared in every way, shape and form. A few of the most mouthwatering dishes included Pat LaFrieda‘s whole marinated Creekstone steer, Justin Smillie‘s succulent spit-roasted short ribs, Portuguese paella with soft egg and jalapeños from Anthony Goncalves, tender grilled rib steak with bone marrow butter and pickled grilled onions from Marc Forgione, and the undeniable crowd favorite, Aaron Franklin’s BBQ beef brisket—which blew away any preconceived notions of what brisket should taste like.
While the event was in full swing, dark grey clouds rolled in and the sky opened up on the carnivorous crowd. Luckily, the Amstel Light and Diageo tents provided shelter from the rain, along with music, entertainment and unlimited tasty beverages. While weathering the storm in the George Dickel Tennessee Whisky tent, I had a blast watching Discovery Channel’s Jimmy DiResta handcraft an entire wooden bar from scratch and downed delicious whisky cocktails like the “Possum Eatin’ Peach Pits”—my favorite drink of the night, and the perfect complement to the savory all-meat menu.
Congrats to another successful Meatopia! Looking forward to even more meaty madness in 2013. And to tempt your taste buds in the meantime, dive into the peachy punch cocktail recipe below:
Possum Eatin’ Peach Pits Recipe
1 ounce George Dickel Tennessee Whisky
1/4 ounce Stirrings Peach Liqueur
1/2 ounce Olorosso Sherry
1 teaspoon Amaro CioCiaro
1/2 ounce black tea
1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
1/4 ounce simple syrup
Slices peaches and strawberries for garnish
Combine all ingredients into a cocktail shaker; Shake well. Pour contents into a rocks glass. Garnish with sliced peaches and strawberries. Cheers!
Wasabi macarons, edamame dumplings, pig’s blood popsicles. These were just a few of the impressive Asian-inspired delicacies sampled at the LUCKYRICE Grand Feast on Friday night. Held at the Mandarin Oriental’s majestic 36th-floor ballroom, this epic celebration drew top chefs from around the globe, including Masaharu Morimoto, Michael Anthony, Ming Tsai, Todd English, Ian Kittichai, Susur Lee and many others from who presented unique interpretations of Asian cuisine.
Packed into the grandiose space, guests sipped and sampled their way through Asia’s diverse cultures without ever leaving NYC. Participating restaurants included Betel, Buddakan, Ember Room, Gramercy Tavern, The Hurricane Club, Junoon, Morimoto, Public, Perry St and Tulsi. To wash down all the flavorful bites, there was also a slew of beverage options, from smooth Suntory whiskies and Singha beer to Bombay Sapphire cocktails and scads of sake. And with all event proceeds benefiting City Harvest, what better reason to pick up some chopsticks and chow down?
For additional coverage, check out my recap of the 2011 LUCKYRICE Festival.
Saturday served up a taste of the South, so I pulled on my cowgirl boots and headed to one of my favorite food events of the year—the Beer, Bourbon & BBQ Festival. My third BBB (last year, I attended NYC’s inaugural fest and also Cary, NC’s Southern soiree) was bigger and better than ever, with thousands of hungry patrons packed into the sprawling space at la.venue for a down-home good time. Admission to the two session pig-out included unlimited tastes of 60+ beers, 40+ bourbons and authentic barbecue, with entertainment from live bluegrass bands and seminars featuring the country’s top Master Distillers and Pit Masters.
My friends and I paraded through the West side venue and sampled a slew of BBQ dishes: pulled pork sliders, fall-from-the-bone ribs, smoked & flavored bacon, brisket, pork belly and pigs feet, complete with all the necessary fixins—collards, chili, beans, grits and more.
From the brews to the browns, the booze was flowin’. Suds from names like Blue Moon, Blue Point, Sierra Nevada, Sam Adams and Magic Hat were on tap to help wash down all the ‘cue, while bourbon lovers sipped Kentucky’s finest whiskey from the big boys (Wild Turkey, Evan Williams, Maker’s Mark) and dozens of small batch samplers.