Sunday, December 23, 2012

Where to Dine for Christmas & the "Eves:" Christmas & New Year

18 Bay Restaurant, Shelter Islamd

Pondering where to dine over the Holiday?  Look no further than these Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown restaurants for their market-driven ingredients and show-stopping menus.
My Homegrown Cookbook’s chefs and the artisanal food makers and the growers who most inspire is a compelling story 
A portion of this list was sourced from Edible East End blog ( I am honored to have more than a web link to Edible East End.  In fact, the Foreward to the Hamptons  & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook is provided by Brian Halweil, Editor Edible East End and the soon to be, Edible Long Island, scheduled for spring 2013. Further, Lindsay Morris, a key photographer for the book is the food photo journalist for Edible East End. 
See how food networks work?
A feature interview with me and Ken Druse: plantsman, garden expert and award-winning garden author on his popular radio show, “Real Dirt,“ showcases the good-food stories and profiles of the pioneering chefs and the artisanal food makers and growers who most inspire them. Take a listen here on the web and at iTunes:
Season’s Greetings. And good Holiday eating. Celebrate family, friends, farmers.
18 Bay Restaurant will be open New Year’s Eve with a four course $50 Chef’s menu.  Owned and operated by chefs Elizabeth and Adam, the market-driven menu offers an Italian inspired Chefs menu.  Dinner begins with four different antipasti, followed by a hand made pasta, a choice of entree and dessert. Handcrafted cocktails using organic syrups, local wine and beer, as well as wines from small producers.  631-749-0053  Shelter Island
The 1770 House in East Hampton will be open for dinner on Christmas Eve starting at 5:30 p.m. 631.324.1770  Chef Kevin Penner’s Cittanuova Restaurant will be opoen Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, regular hours, according to Chef Kevin’s Tweets.
The 12th Annual Christmas Eve Roast Suckling Pig Dinner at Almond in Bridgehampton includes suckling pig, cabbage, carmelized apples and spaetzle for $31. A portion of the revenue from Christmas Eve will be donated to the Pajama Program.  Call 631-537-5665. Open from 6 to 10 p.m.
Amarelle in Wading River will be open on Christmas Eve with their winter menu and a Seven Fishes menu. 631.886.2242.  Chef Lia Fallon knows a thing or two about the traditional Italian fish menu – it’s her heritage, after all.  The food, the fireplace, the service create an ambiance that is made for the Holidays.

The American Hotel is open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. They offer a prixe fixe menu: $85 per person.  New Year’s Eve there are two seatings:  $75 per person for early seating and $200 per person at the 9:00 seating. There is dancing to a love three-piece combo band at the late seating too. 631-725-3535 Sag Harbor
CoolFish Restaurant: The last seating on Christmas Eve is 7:30.  New Year’s Eve is open seating with a $49.00 prix fixe for three-course menu, including a glass of champagne.  516-921-3250.  Chef Tom Schaudel’s other award-winning restaurant, Jewel Restaurant, will be open Christmas Eve and then New Year’s Even with their a la carte dinner specials. 631-755-5777
Foody's Restaurant in Water Mill will be open Christmas Eve until 4:00 pm and will be open New Year’s Eve with their stellar, locally-sourced menu ingredients.  631-726-FOOD (3663)  Water Mill
Fresno Restaurant will be open New Year’s Eve with an a la carte menu and lots of “specials.” 631-324-8700
The Frisky Oyster in Greenport is open New Year’s Eve with an a la carte market-driven menu.  The Oysters Friskafella is life-changing as is the Crescent Farms Duck menu-infused creations. 631-477-4265 Greenport   

The Grey Horse Tavern will be open Christmas Eve till 7 pm. New Year’s Eve, the restaurant will be open its regular hours and the bar will be open to toast the New Year! 631-472-1868 Bayport

Jedediah Hawkins Inn open Christmas Eve: a to-die-for locally-sourced ingredients menu: $75 with glass of champagne, $105 with wine pairing.  Children under 9 - $30. and New Year’s Eve menu: 7 pm $95 with glass of champagne, $125 with wine pairing and 9:30 seating $125 with glass of champagne, $155 with wine pairing.  The Inn boasts enchanting and glamorous rooms to snuggle in for the holidays. Eat. Drink and be merry and never leave the garden grounds. 631-722-2900  Jamesport
Chef Keith Luce, Jedediah Hawkins Inn

Kitchen A Trattoria, Kitchen A Bistro open New Year’s Eve, prixe fixe, $75 per person 631-584-3518 St. James
The Lake House Restaurant This award-winning, romantic, elegant restaurant is open Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve with its market-driven ingredients and a la carte menu. 631-666-0995 Bayshore
The Living Room Restaurant, on Main Street in East Hampton at will be open Christmas Even and Christmas Day for lunch and dinner. The a la carte menu will be available as well as the Swedish table menu, a four-course meal for $36 featuring Swedish specialties. 631.324.5006.
Mitch & Toni's American Bistro features a New Year’s Eve celebration with their regular menu and a special New Year’s Eve prix-fixe, four-course menu before 8 pm.  Seating at 9 pm is the special prix-fixe menu only at $85 per person including a glass of champagne toast at midnight, live music and gratuity.  516-741-7940 Albertson
Noah’s in Greenport will be closed Christmas Even and Christmas Day, but will open Dec. 26 through Jan. 1 for lunch and dinner
Nick & Toni’s will be open on Christmas Eve serving their regular menu from 6 to 9. 631.324.3550  East Hampton
The North Fork Table & Inn will be open New Year’s Eve with a three-course, $75 prix-fixe or Chef’s Tasting menu, $125 (includes be-still-my-heart truffles and foi grois).  Call for room reservations so you can just sigh into culinary bliss upstairs post dinner… Southold.
Restaurant Mirabelle is open Christmas Eve, featuring an enchanting menu: Amuse Busche, Appetizer, Entrée and Dessert for $65 from 4 pm to 9 pm. What a charming way to toast Noel Holiday.  The restaurant will also be open New Year’s Eve with a multi-course dinner menu, $115.  Mirabelle will also offer a $49 three-course menu in the Tavern. 631-751-0555  Stony Brook
A Mano in Mattituck will be serving the feast of the seven fishes on Christmas Eve. 631.298.4800.
Love Lane Kitchen in Mattituck will be open for breakfast and lunch on Christmas Eve. 631.298.8989
Scrimshaw Restaurant Greenport is open Christmas Eve with their a la carte Holiday Menu – featuring local Peconic Bay Scallops. Same for New Year’s Eve. Toast 2103 in this on-the-water restaurant.
Southfork Kitchen's Master Chef, Joe Isidori Brooklyn Restaurant is open for New Year’s Eve with their market-driven menu.  Southfork Kitchen will reopen in April for the season. Meanwhile, Chef Joe doesn’t miss a culinary connection. In fact, email is and 718-360-2340. 
Swallow Restaurant is open for New Year’s Eve with a prix-fixe menu. Six and eight o’clock seatings: $60, 10 pm seating: $80. 631-547-5388  Huntington and Montauk.
Vine Street Café on Shelter Island will be open on Christmas Even and New Year’s Eve. Blue Canoe in Greenport will be open both those days and New Year’s Day. 631-749-3210/Vine Street; 631.477.6888/Blue Canoe

Friday, December 21, 2012

Honoring the Victims of Sandy Hook

Today marks one week since the Sandy Hook school massacre in Connecticut. 
There will be a moment of silence and the bells in houses of worship will toll 26 times – one for each victim - at 9:30 am.

Outside of a few Junior League girlfriends who have family and friends there, I do not have a direct connection and to Newton. 
The only “link” is a moniker: our Garden State home sits atop nearby Sandy Hook beach. 
Now, every time I look out at that gorgeous seascape vista, I am reminded of the other Sandy Hook.  Every time I see the sign for the beach – which has been closed since Superstorm Sandy – I cry – for everything “Sandy” and what she’s ripped from us.

And yet, the shootings dominate our world, my world.
I am emboldened to write about this Sandy Hook after reading a fellow food blogger, The Sassy Radish

Olga wrote thoughtfully and sincerely and captured much of what I have been afraid to write. Politics is usually avoided when writing of gardens and food. (Although even that seems to be changing.) She quotes Thomas Lynch.

I commented that we need to brave.  We need to have this conversation and not be bullied into accepting a status quo – that I daresay diminishes all of us. 

We are all victims here.

It’s often said that you can gauge a society by the way it treats its elders and its young.  If we allow these people-killing guns to go unregulated then we are doomed as a good society. 
It seems appropriate to reference the idiom: Fool me once, shame on you; Fool me twice, shame on me.
We cannot continue to be fooled into thinking guns don’t kill people. This will happen again.
We cannot allow the gun industry to sell us this horror just to fill their wallets.

I’ve heard it said “that guns don’t kill people, people do.  Guns are tools.”
Yes. Now we need to take the bad gun tools out of the hands of people who pull triggers.  They don’t know how to use the tools…
Regulate the gun “shows.” And tax both the guns and the bullets.

Let’s have this conversation about regulations.
See what happens when we don’t? Don’t look the other way.

Let’s protect our children. We need to bear witness.

Peace on earth, especially this time of year.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

United Way of Greater Mercer County Women’s Leadership Council will host a book signing with Leeann Lavin, author of “The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook

I am so honored to co-host a Homegrown book signing, talk and reading on Monday, December 17th   with the United Way of Greater Mercer County.
Princeton, New Jersey is a Currier & Ives hamlet this time of year, especially, so the event will be extra seasonally festive.  I’m driving with Mother, and my dearest garden design client, Maria—who by the way, made the introductions to effervescent and irrepressible Judy from United Way that made all this possible.
Undoubtedly, Maria is magic. I acknowledge her fairy godmother/fée marraine power and her support as a mentor and garden muse in The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook.  I so respect her input and wise counsel on all matters of taste.  She is peerless in her own homegrown cooking. She is a fabulous cook with Italian heritage and truth be told – her meatball mojo is a culinary potion, as well as many other homegrown, delicious, family recipes.
This will be a good day. And the last of the Homegrown book events until after the New Year.  So we’ll make it spectacular!
Here’s the news from United Way:
United Way of Greater Mercer County Women’s Leadership Council will host a book signing with Leeann Lavin, author of “The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook,” on Monday, kicking off with holiday afternoon tea at 3 p.m. at Nassau Inn, 10 Palmer Square. The event will be raising money for an early reading readiness program.
Guests will enjoy a traditional tea party while listening to Lavin talk about how the movement to eat what is grown locally is gaining momentum and how to incorporate this philosophy into our lives. To register, visit or contact (609) 637-4902. The cost is $30 per lady.
There have been a number of media news stories heralding this benefit—here’s one:
Hope to see you in Princeton tomorrow.  If you are not local to Princeton and want to get a copy of the Hampton & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook, please contact me. 
Cheers to the first of the Holiday Homegrown events. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Perfect Holiday & Hostess Gift under $30 for Food & Garden Lovers Dreaming of Homegrown Recipes

Nick & Toni's Chef, Joe Realmuto with his inspired farmer, Scott Chaskey

The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook has "many a fascinating story told in this book and I suggest that you go right ahead and buy a copy for every foodie on your gift list. Locals will love it. As will native Long Islanders who now live “away.” People who visit our shores will also “eat it up," according to reviewer Stacy Dermont, Dan's Papers. She added: The Hamptons Homegrown Cookbook is sure to be the go-to gift of the season. No doubt it will appear beneath Christmas trees and Chanukah bushes." 

OK, it’s 12/12/12 – a truly lucky day signaling enjoyment, creative expression, rejuvenation.

There are Twelve Days till Christmas and Kwanza! And Hanukkah is almost a sweet, culinary memory.

Capture the lucky-day aura and discover the joy and creativity in The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook. 
It is the quintessential, enduring gift for everyone who lives a food and garden lifestyle because it is filled with nearly 30 curated food stories, delicious recipes and sumptuous photos.

You create a lasting memory every time the Food Book is opened. 

The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook captures the authentic, homegrown ingredients that are the hallmarks of the Island’s food culture -- captivating all who celebrate the continued, passionate interest in food, cooking, and artisanal ingredients, as well as a burgeoning interest in cultivating a Hampton’s lifestyle.

Pair the book with some local, artisanal ingredients from the book’s food artisans and the gift package is nothing short of a Holiday Miracle!

Featured chef, Keith Luce, for example, sells packaged flavored local sea salts in the The Jedediah Hawkins Inn The flavors include lemon ginger, duck wing and sun-dried tomato and balsamic vinegar, as well as plain salts.  
Chef Keith Luce in his kitchen garden - that he designed & nurtures

Jedediah Hawkins Victorian Inn

Anna Pump serving up her Homegrown food at Loaves & Fishes
Anna Pump, Loaves & Fishes. Photo: Lindsay Morris
Anna Pump's Cooking School at her charming Bridgehampton Inn. Photo Jennifer Calais Smith 
Anna & me/Author at Cooking demo & book signing
Or choose from a cooking class or world-class cooking utensils and tools found in the cornucopia of Chef Anna Pump’s Loaves & Fishes  

Or select from “the stylish, stemless Danish glasses – and most items found sopratavolo (on your table) at Chef Kevin Penner’s 1770 House and Cittanuova.

Create a Culinary Passport!
Include a gift certificate for any one of the featured restaurants – or for all the Homegrown restaurants – many have lodging too, including The North Fork Table & Inn, The American Hotel, Sag Harbor, The Maidstone & The Living Room and the Cuvee Bistro & Bar, GreenporterHotel

Foody's Chef Bryan Futerman & Hayground 's Jon Snow
Or enjoy the fun, open-mic nights at Foody's in Water Mill, dining on homegrown pizza made with local honey, tomatoes, and grilled in a cherrywood-infused oven!  

At Foody's for Homegrown photo shoot: me/author & Chef Bryan

The good-food stories of the area’s best chefs and the artisanal growers who inspire them will resonate for years to come.
And so will the homegrown recipes.
“Get the best ingredients and do as little as possible to them” is a tip from many of the Hamptons & Long Island chefs featured in the book.

The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook takes the reader on a private, intimate tour of outstanding chefs of the Long Island area and their gardens.
Each profile reflects the chef's personal style, cultural background, desire for healthy, just-picked ingredients, and gardening philosophy.

The Cookbook offers a unique opportunity to showcase the natural beauty, distinctive, inspired cuisine, food stories and recipes as told in the rare collection of chef and grower profiles celebrated in The Hamptons & Long Island Cookbook.
To order the book The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook at Amazon, B&N & local Independent Book Stores:

The book is available as Nook Book (eBook)

At the same time, contact the me/author via Facebook to secure an autographed copy!

"Like"but really Love :) the Homegrown book at:The Hamptons& Long Island Homegrown Facebook page