Anyone who has been paying close attention to the culinary trends of right now is very much aware that the next “it” cuisine is that of Peru, a cuisine that has been slowly and quietly trying to break into the American palate for at least a decade. A handful of chefs and food writers had heralded the advent of Peruvian cuisine in this country years ago, but it had been premature, and many food enthusiasts were left waiting for a wave of Peruvian restaurants - both haute and humble - that never seemed to arrive. This country wasn’t ready yet. Not only did we lack the food culture that we have today with all its foodie bloggers and gourmet food trucks, it was almost as if gringos had yet to resolve their issues with Latin American cuisine. Although many Latin Americans were already fans of the varied and sophisticated cuisine of Peru, the general American population still thought that Latino cuisines were either confined inside a tortilla or served with a heap of rice, beans, and plantains. Peruvian cuisine did not fit neatly into any of those compartments. With the rise in Latino chefs and the spread of Nuevo Latino cuisine, Americans began to understand that Latin American cuisines could be elegant and sophisticated and complex. We began enjoying spicier, bolder flavors. We started to become huge fans of ceviche to the point that almost every menu now features it. We were also about to be introduced to a chef who was steadily building momentum in Peru and who would introduce the rest of the world to Peruvian cuisine.
February is filled with so much to do in South Florida for a foodie. As if our minds aren’t already constantly occupied with the South Beach Wine & Food Festival, we have Valentine’s Day to think about next week. If you’re lucky enough to have someone with whom to celebrate it, you probably know that a romantic dinner can truly take this day of love from simply romantic to truly memorable. While attempting to make a gourmet, multi course meal at home is an honorable feat, sometimes it’s best to let some our best chefs work at the food while you enjoy each other’s company. In case you haven't already made plans, here are some of Joonbug’s picks in Miami for Valentine’s Day dinner:
For some reason, it seems as if time really flew between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year, which means that most of us have been scrambling to get our greeting cards and presents in order, as well as trying to keep track of the various holiday functions we feel obliged to attend. When your main preoccupation is trying to find just one good gift for your mom and realizing that you haven’t sent anything to your in-laws while they sent you a box of presents, the last thing on your mind is planning a Christmas (or Noche Buena) feast. Sure, you can do what I do and round up a selection of charcuterie and cheeses from Graziano’s and Epicure to nibble at throughout the holiday - or visit a Blue Sky for your lechón - but with so many fabulous restaurants offering such wonderful Christmas and Christmas Eve dinners, it’s hard not to take the easy way out and leave the preparations to the gourmet chefs. If you’re finding yourself in Miami without dinner plans this Christmas, let Joonbug outline a few suggestions for you:
Ah, the holidays have officially begun! Hot apple cider, pumpkin spiced anything and plenty of champagne shall be flowing in these next few months! With that said, we've rounded up some festive drinks from all over the country, for you to try in your own home. They are the perfect addition to any holiday dinner!
Jagertee (Served at Liason Capitol Hill, Washington DC)
1.5 oz. Blackwell Rum
1.5 oz. St.Elizabeth Allspice Dream
1.5 oz. Merlot
Laurent Tourondel is a classically trained French Chef with an impressive resume. As the Executive Chef of Brasserie Ruhlmann in Rockefeller Center, he is also responsible, along with ex-partner Jimmy Haber, for the BLT and LT restaurant locations all over the world. Hong Kong, Las Vegas, Panama City, Miami and Scottsdale have all had the pleasure of enduring the mark Tourondel leaves and now New York can further experience what Tourondel has to offer.
This fall Tourondel will be opening the Arlington Club on the Upper East Side of Manhattan in conjunction with the Tao Group. The Tao Group is a premier restaurant and nightlife group in control of Tao, Lavo and Asellina both in New York and Las Vegas. The Arlington Club will be located on Lexington avenue between 73rd and 74th street where Payard Patiserrie & Bistro was shut down in 2009 for health code violations. Unable to past inspection and reopen, the space has been vacant ever since.
1440 Ocean Drive
Make a reservation now for beachside brunch at BLT Steak, before they hibernate for the winter on November 22. This national treasure (it was voted #1 steakhouse in NYC) brings a variety of choices to make your Sunday morning unforgettable. You can’t go wrong with the Brunch classic Steak and Eggs, which is served with a tomato topped with melted cheese and panko bread crumbs, or Brioche French Toast served with fresh berries. If you opt for the $24 prix fixe menu, it comes with a complimentary Bloody Mary or Mimosa. Whatever you choose, don’t miss Chef Laurent Tourondel’s signature popovers!