Stories for: Dining & Nightlife

Dining & Nightlife, Hotels, San FranciscoFairmont San Francisco

Usually when one thinks of San Francisco– there are certain must-visit attractions that come to mind- The Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman’s Wharf, Ghirardelli Square, Palace of Fine Arts Theater- just to name a few.  A few weeks ago on my most recent trip to the city, I discovered, while spotting tour groups walking through my hotel lobby, that the Fairmont San Francisco also makes the list, and deservingly so! Situated atop the beautiful Nob Hill, the Fairmont is one of the city’s landmark hotels and a true local icon.  It’s deeply steeped in history- both as the original Fairmont Hotel– and as a historic building in the city of San Francisco. READ MORE

Dining & Nightlife, Hotels, New York, TravelSummer in Southampton

Every summer I inevitably find myself spending some weekends “out east” (in Manhattan vernacular) or heading to the Hamptons, an idyllic consortium of towns located on the eastern tip of Long Island and a popular hangout for young professionals to socialites. Some people go for the “scene” bar-hopping, party-going, bash-throwing, while others go simply go to get away.  Earlier this summer, I spent a long weekend out in Southampton for the latter reason, a little trip to rejuvenate me after months and months in the city.

While I’ve spent multiple summers before in Southampton, it’s always been at a friend’s house or a summer share, which isn’t exactly conducive to relaxing. So this time, I checked into the Southampton Inn, a casual chic inn located just around the corner from downtown Southampton, and a free shuttle away from Cooper’s Beach. Nestled on five acres of manicured lawns, the Inn houses 90 simple but spacious and charming rooms, a new pool and OSO, the property’s first restaurant. The country style décor exudes laid back Hamptons charm and the friendly staff helps you feel at home right away. What I love about this place is that the inn is completely unassuming and unpretentious, a welcome relief amongst the typical Hamptons scene. That’s not to say, however, that the inn doesn’t provide top of the line amenities.  Each room is equipped with Gilchrist & Soames toiletries and super comfortable Tempur Pedic® mattresses. In fact, the Inn’s balance of privacy and luxury makes it the lodging of choice for a number of celebrity clients every summer and the stylish grounds made it the location for the filming of upcoming Kate Hudson movie, Something Borrowed. READ MORE

Dining & Nightlife, Food, New YorkThe Ultimate NY Lobster Roll: Mary’s Fish Camp

Lobster, fresh lemon juice, and the taste of clarified butter: foods for me that conjure up summertime memories of when I was 7 or 8, and our family used to make yearly car-ride pilgrimages to Arcadia, Maine, for a taste of the outdoors that suburban New Jersey couldn’t provide.  Rather then playing the “Am I There Yet” game with my brother, I spent the 8-10 hour drive to Maine sleeping.  But I always knew when we were getting close to our destination when my dad pulled into the nearest, decent open-air, roadside seafood joint advertising LOBSTERS in capital letters.

Our whole family would sit down to a fresh lunch (or dinner) of a few, simply steamed lobsters with sides of lemon and melted butter, as we dug into their nooks and crannies, seeking out the fresh, sweet meat.  My dad was always the best and fastest at digging, always offering us the choicest, largest morsels, something he still does today whenever we eat shellfish.  I was always amazed when he could crack a lobster claw, and remove the entire thing intact, like extracting a puzzle piece.

Coming to Mary’s Fish Camp, made me feel like I wasn’t on Charles Street anymore, but exiting onto the highway off a family trip from Maine into one of those roadside seafood joints.  Perched on the corner, Mary’s Fish Camp is a small open-window corner restaurant with walls lined with faded old-time nautical ads  and ’70s rock playing overhead  (when I was there, it seemed like the entire Virgin Suicides Soundtrack was on rotation).   One of their famed Lobster Rolls can be seen on practically every one of their ten tables and along the smooth metal counter. READ MORE

Dining & Nightlife, TravelTalisker on Main

Earlier this year I went on a press trip to Park City, Utah where I was introduced to the magical world of Talisker. Located in Deer Valley, Talisker in Tuhaye is an amazingly beautiful private community which they describe as “an exclusive oasis dedicated to the finer things in life.”  We were treated to a divine spa and fitness session at the gorgeous Club Park (see above) which is open only to members of the community. READ MORE

Dining & Nightlife, Hotels, Los AngelesEnchantée, Delphine

What: Delphine

Who: Innovative Dining Group (IDG), Executive Chef Sascha Lyon

Where: W Hollywood, 6250 Hollywood Boulevard, Hollywood, Calif. 90028 (323) 798-1355

When: Monday-Wednesday; Sunday: 6:30 a.m.-3 p.m.; 5 p.m.-10:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday: 5 p.m.-12 a.m.

It’s about time I wrote about Delphine, the delightful brasserie, or “eatery and bar,” in the new W Hollywood Hotel and Residences, helmed by Executive Chef Sascha Lyon (Balthazar, Pastis, Sascha). I’ve stopped there for brunch and cocktails several times now, and it’s proven to be a delightful, relaxing culinary experience — not to mention a good ol’ time. READ MORE

Dining & Nightlife, HotelsWeekend at Westend Bistro

What: Westend Bistro

Who: Owner Eric Ripert, Chef Joe Palma

Where: The Ritz-Carlton Washington DC, 1190 22nd Street Northwest Washington, DC 20037, (202) 974-4900

When: Dinner: Sunday-Thursday 5:30-10:00PM, Friday – Saturday 5:30-11:00PM
Open 7 nights a week (Cocktails and Full Menu) Lunch: Monday-Friday 11:30-2:30PM

This past Friday I was chatting with a friend of mine over a couple glasses of wine discussing summer trip options.  The thing about living in New York is, once the weather gets warm, there is just an indescribable desire to get out of the city on the weekends.  Having just taken a mini trip to Washington DC a couple weeks ago, I threw out the idea of DC as an easy, accessible and fun place to get away to for a few days.  My friend, a self proclaimed foodie, immediately asked about the dining scene in the nation’s capital. READ MORE

Dining & Nightlife, San FranciscoChaya Brasserie San Francisco

What: Chaya Brasserie

Who: Executive Chef Shigefumi Tachibe

Where: 132 Embarcadero in San Francisco

When: For lunch, M-F: 11:30am-2pm. For dinner, M-W: 5:30pm-10pm, Th-S: 5:30pm-10:30pm, Sun: 5:30pm-9pm. For happy hour, begins at 4pm M-F, at 5pm on weekends.

Why: Located on the Embarcadero, Chaya Brasserie will give you a delectable dining French-Japanese experience with unobstructed views of the Bay Bridge. READ MORE

Cheap & Chic, Dining & Nightlife, Hotels, New YorkCheap & Chic: April 2010

Chicago, Dining & NightlifeChicago, A La Card

One of the best things about Chicago is its amazing restaurant scene. There are so many fantastic chefs here and not nearly enough time to explore! A La Card Chicago makes it a lot easier by making decks of $10 gift certificates to 52 different chef-driven, owner-operated restaurants. The participating restaurants are awesome and even include some of my personal favorites, like Floriole, Hot Chocolate, Salpicon, and Takashi, and a whole bunch that I can’t wait to try. The $520 worth of gift certificates are handily packaged like a deck of cards… and will only cost you $30! So the next time that you’re thinking of a new place to eat, take out your A La Card Chicago deck, draw a card, and save $10 every time. For the full list of restaurants or to purchase, visit

Chicago, Dining & NightlifeChicago Restaurant Week!

The absolute best week for Chicago foodies just kicked off today–it’s Chicago Restaurant Week! Starting today through the 28th, you can have a 3-course lunch for only $22 and a 3-course dinner for only $32 at over 170 participating restaurants in Chicago (all prix fixe). This is quite the deal for a 3-course meal, especially at some of Chicago’s top restaurants. I’m so excited to see that some of my favorite restaurants are participating and I’ve got some great recommendations for you:

  • Blackbird counts Anthony Bourdain as one of its biggest fans and offers amazing contemporary dishes from executive chef Paul Kahan, a James Beard nominee and winner.
  • Definitely check out Perennial, named one of Travel & Leisure’s Top 50 New Restaurants in America. Their most delicious black truffle gnocchi appetizer is available for Restaurant Week!
  • I’ve had the best tapas and even a whole roast pig at Mercat a la Planxa, and they are participating with a special lunch menu.
  • Through Top Chef Masters, the rest of the country discovered the talent of Chicago’s Rick Bayless. His Frontera Grill and Topolobampo restaurants will have special lunch menus.
  • The Chicago location of Miami’s famous Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab will have those delicious stone crab claws on the menu for Restaurant Week.

Visit for a complete list of participating restaurants, as well as featured recipes from some of the restaurants so you can make the deliciousness at home! You can make reservations very easily online at Enjoy, and eat it up!

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