It is no secret that cupcakes are the newest culinary obsession especially to anyone who spends a lot of time in the Chicago area. People are fascinated by this cute, creative dessert item and by the fact that everyone can choose their own special flavor even when supplying sweet treats for large groups. If you are in the Chicago area, no matter what part of the city you are visiting, chances are there is a bakery nearby mixing up these decadent indulgences. For now, take a look at the six locations below that have made a name for themselves and gained a large following of cupcake enthusiasts.
Bringing a unique and vivacious style to SoHo, Spring Street Natural is one of New York’s trendiest hot spots. From its fashionable interior to its healthy and delectable menu, this chic venue quickly became a notorious celebrity in the neighborhood. First opening their doors in 1973, Spring Street Natural continues to follow their core philosophy: “to serve whole natural foods that are minimally processed.” Mouthwatering homemade breads, healthy pastas, free range poultry, and organic whole wheat flour pie crusts contribute to this restaurant’s blank palate, and the chefs creatively take it from there to compose a divine menu for every customer to indulge in.
Tuesday and Wednesday evenings are the new Saturdays. Seriously. Tommy Lasagna is now offering an exclusive bottomless wine and lasagna making class every Tuesday and Wednesday from 6 to 8pm. The hour and a half class is the perfect weeknight activity to do with friends or a date. Participants will learn from legendary executive chef Tommy Mosera how to make the restaurant's namesake 'Tommy Lasagna,' as well as Pappardelle Bolognese. While cooking, guests will enjoy unlimited wine and appetizers throughout the evening. Every participant gets to leave with their own lasagna masterpiece. Reservations must be booked 48 hours in advance and costs $100.
It’s hard to believe that Memorial Day Weekend is here already since the weather in NYC doesn’t seem to match up with the appropriate seasons anymore. With Memorial Day comes barbeques, festivals and fairs, and hopefully some beach-worthy sunshine and what better way to enjoy these summertime staples than a nice, cold summer-inspired cocktail? Below you’ll find cocktail recipes mixed with all your summertime favorites like iced tea, lemonade, fruit punch, fresh fruit, and even a red velvet strawberry shortcake. One sip of these cocktails and you’ll be singing ‘summertime and the livings’ easy’ faster than it takes to step into your favorite pair of flip flops.
Okay so we know Bedford Avenue in Williamsburg is swarming with good food and lots of people. Not to mention Smorgasburg on Saturdays, which is one of our favorite places to go; but there is also so much to try beyond where the huge crowds are. We decided to route a foodie adventure for you and we recommend renting some bicycles for some light biking in between so you can burn a few calories and really enjoy the day. You can rent bikes for $35 per day, including the helmet, at Bike Peddler near the Lorimer stop on the L train.
Black Tree Sandwich Shop (131 Orchard Street)
Black Tree bills itself as a “next generation” sandwich shop using “ingredients and techniques more closely associated with a top restaurant kitchen—not a modest sandwich shop,” explains Sandy Hall who runs Black Tree with friend Macnair Sillick, a political reporter for NY1. Their new location on Orchard Street is the sandwich shop's first outpost in Manhattan after finding great success in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Black Tree on Orchard will offer seasonally inspired American sandwiches with ingredients sourced exclusively from local farmers and farmers markets. The spring menu includes a Spring Pig Sandwich made with house smoked ham, Prairie View cheddar, Mona sheep milk cheese, and house made spicy pickles, spicy aioli, and mustard or the Spring Mushroom Sandwich prepared with white wine and herb marinated cremini mushrooms with sautéed kale, onion, garlic, and Landaff cheese. With a hyper-local theme, the Black Tree cocktail assortment is made up of mostly New York-based spirits. With wine mainly from Long Island wineries and beers brewed right in Brooklyn, and house made bitters. Black Tree may be the most locally sourced sandwich shop in the city.
Rick Bayless is a highly acclaimed chef of Mexican cuisine, especially in the Chicago area. He has over five restaurants and catering companies in Illinois, and he is widely known for his television show, Mexico One Plate At a Time on PBS. Bayless has made multiple appearances on the Food Network, so it is not surprising that the channel has praised many of his restaurants, including Topolobampo. Located on North Clark Street in downtown Chicago, the restaurant is right in the middle of all the action. “Topolo,” as the frequent visitors call the restaurant, is known for being the quieter, possibly classier version of its sister site Frontera Grill, also owned by Bayless. Rick’s goal is to enhance the typical reputation that Mexican cuisine has by putting an upscale twist on the food, while maintaining the authentic flavors and techniques.
The city can be an unforgiving and unfriendly place to work and live. Since we all have our own agendas and jam packed calendars, our manners oftentimes fall by the wayside. We’re all guilty of it. You’ve held the close door button in the elevator to skip over floors and you’ve hopped in a cab someone else hailed. We’ve all done things that aren’t so sweet to our fellow New Yorkers. Austin-based Sweet Leaf Tea has set up an interactive campaign on the High Line under the Chelsea Market Passage (16th Street and Tenth Avenue) to help change that. Sweet Leaf Tea is on a mission to encourage Big Apple residents to spread kindness throughout our community.
Whether we eat meat or not, we can still appreciate a good vegan or vegetarian dish. In fact, a lot of times we find ourselves completely satisfied with a vegan meal if it’s done right. This week Joonbug hit up a ton of vegan restaurants around NYC in search of our favorites. Lets take a look at our top 3...
Loving Hut (348 Seventh Avenue)
Gin is the spirit of the moment with a rising popularity in jazz nights happening at venues around the city and the huge success of Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby in theaters now. What better time than when gin-based cocktails are making a comeback in a huge way than to introduce Geranium London Dry Gin? Gin is hugely popular across the pond but many drinkers here in the states tend to gravitate toward vodka and rums. Henrik Hammer, a Danish gin expert and founder of Geranium Gin is hoping to change that with his craft spirit.