On sale now are tickets to the 2nd annual New York City Wine & Food Festival, the brainchild of Studio 54 legend turned Miami hotelier Lee Schrager who's traded disco naps for disco brunches and so much more. So much so more in fact, I'll be taking you on a personal journey through the line-up every Thursday through October 8th when the party comes back to our shores, hopefully with more success than my great grandpapa Uri.
The Bob Dylan Wine Pairing at City Winery October 10th, $125.
When I put together bob and dillin' I think of the neighborhood block parties of my youth, candles in paper bags lining the driveways end leading me home after a full day of face painting, four legged races, and poking my head in the pickle barrel, fingers crossed behind my back I'll come up with the cucumber full of quarters. Once I was back inside my parents would turn down their music and open up all the windows to let in the night breeze in, but I knew what they were up to. The records, the weird looking carafe, they were listening to Dylan and drinking wine! And now that I'm all grown up - you might say my palate has gone electric - and it's not a barrel full of brine but a barrel full of wine that does it for me now.
Meatball Madness at la.venue, October 11th, $200.
"Meatball Madness." There's something that still stings about those words. My great-grandfather, at the turn of the last century came over here from Italy and spent six months in quarantine with this sickness - the swine flu of its time - before he was a loud to depart from Ellis Island. As my parents tell it, when he was finally released, the nurse said, "You're a free man." And that's how great grandpa Uri got his name.
Bruni Unveiled with Ben Leventhal at the New School, October 9th, $35.
I have a lot a history with Frank and Ben, so I don't want to spoil the big night but I will unveil this tidbit: Why Eater's Brunibetting feature was such a success.
For almost a year, while Frank was struggling with his weight, Ben and I wrote his reviews together. We made an awesome team, Ben choosing the words and me awarding the stars. (Yes they were gold, yes they were real, yes they're still on my fridge. And yes they were for Ben's writing. It had nothing to do with the food, I just don't get sarcasm so when Ben wrote a mean review I'd gave him the least stars. I hope everyone knew that!)
Anyway, eventually Frank found an exercise routine that worked for him - which he chronicled for Mens Vogue - and writing that wet his appetite to write his Times reviews again, splitting us up like peas in a soup. Between the two of us I always thought Ben would be raising my veil first but it's not October yet, and early every Wednesday morning before the sun starts to rise, I still go out to buy the paper knowing anything can happen under those stars, even if they're out of our control.