The Essential Epicurean Guide To Restaurant Week in NYC: Summer 2016 Edition

This is not a drill people, Restaurant Week is once again upon us! Despite what the haters and hipsters have to say, I, for one, am super excited to head over to the greatest city in the world and chow down on some epic eats! This year’s Restaurant “Week” runs from July 25, 2016 to August 19, 2016 (I know that is more than a week, DEAL WITH IT!) and will run you $29.00 for lunch and $42.00 for dinner. Here is a link to all the participating restaurants; NYCGO.

Restaurant-week-2016-summer

However, if picking a restaurant seems more daunting than hitting a Noah Syndergaard fastball, then keep reading. To make your life easier, I have compiled my essential epicurean guide to this event once again. This time, I embarked on a mission to steer clear of the ordinary haunts and attempted to find the spots that are slightly off the beaten path, gastronomically speaking.

These restaurants might scare people off on a regular Monday, due to their rather adventurous cuisine and, let’s be honest, New York City price tags. However, thanks to the beauty of Restaurant Week, we can give these eclectic establishments a whirl without the worry of buyer’s remorse. So, without further ado, let’s take a Gastronomic walkabout around the globe, simply by driving across a river. (The following list is in no particular order, so make sure to scroll to the end)

The Cecil

Cuisine: African

Restaurant: The Cecil

Address: 210 West 118th Street at St. Nicholas Avenue New York, NY 10026

Why You Should Go: The Cecil has basically created a culinary style that is unique to their establishment deemed Afro-Asian-American. Pair that awesome sauce with their chic décor and hip ambience and you have a recipe for a memorable night out.        

What You Should Order: Collar Green Salad, Fried Chicken Fried Rice, and Triple Chocolate Cake

TenderSteak

Cuisine: American New, Japanese Sushi

Restaurant: Tender Steak + Sushi

Address: 130 West 47th Street, NY 10036  

Why You Should Go: This unique and modern eatery flawlessly combines a traditional American Steakhouse with an authentic high end Sushi joint. Tender made my list because of its culinary range, offering everything from burgers to sushi. This restaurant is great for the group that just can’t decide on one type of cuisine.

What You Should Order: Spicy Tuna Crispy Rice, Tender Wagyu Burger, and Crème Brulee

Distilled NYC

Cuisine: American New

Restaurant: Distilled New York

Address: 211 W Broadway, New York, NY 10013

Why You Should Go: Distilled New York is a throwback to a near forgotten era where public houses, pubs, and bars were not just full of D-Bags looking to get drunk and laid. Back in the day, these establishments were home to impromptu town hall meetings and actual political discussions, based on informed opinions as opposed to what party you are affiliated with. Distilled is trying to harness that vibe and reinvent the old school Public House. Not to mention they have a standup beer menu and their food is pretty epic.

What You Should Order: Distilled Wings, Country Fried Duck and Waffle, Night Cap

Chefs Club

Cuisine: American New

Restaurant: Chef’s Club

Address: 275 Mulberry St. Manhattan, NY 10012

Why You Should Go: Brought to you by Food & Wine, this swanky restaurant boasts a collaborative menu from a rotating list of some of the world’s most renowned young Chefs. The Chef’s Club also offers eaters the unique experience of watching the drama of the kitchen unfold before their eyes thanks to their open kitchen, which is located in the center of the eatery.

What You Should Order: Calamari & Giardiniera Salad, Spicy Beef Ribs, and Chocolate Pretzel Whoopie Pie

Blenheim

Cuisine: American New

Restaurant: Blenheim

Address: 283 W. 12th St. New York, NY 10014

Why You Should Go: First and foremost this sexy eatery has just earned itself a Michelin Star, which should be reason enough to visit. However, that is only the tip of the romaine. Blenheim is redefining the term Farm to Table, by literally growing the food that appears on their impressive menu on their own farm, located in the Catskills. Plus, they are serving this amazingly fresh fare in a beautifully inviting atmosphere. Reservations are hard to come by, but try to score one of the outdoor tables which allow you to enjoy your dinner while participating in one of my favorite NYC past times, people watching.

What You Should Order: Poached Farm Egg, Roast Chicken, and Honey Semifreddo

smoke jazz club

Cuisine: American New

Restaurant: Smoke Jazz & Supper Club

Address: 2751 Broadway Manhattan, NY 10025

Why You Should Go: Smoke Jazz & Supper Club is one of NYC’s most distinguished Jazz Clubs and they just so happen to have a world renowned Chef playing her tunes in the Kitchen to boot. Let Smoke set the mood for your date night with their vintage décor, candlelit tables, soulful live jazz performances, and remarkable food. It is like the Barry White songs of restaurants, if you are picking up what I am putting down.

What You Should Order: Mousse of Foie Gras, Lobster Ravioli, S’mores Brownie

BurkeWillsNYC

Cuisine: Australian

Restaurant: Burke & Willis

Address: 226 W 79th St, New York, NY 10024

Why You Should Go: Visiting Australia has always been a dream of mine, alas the never ending plane ride has always scared me away. Thanks to Burke & Willis, I can now try traditional Southern Hemisphere food, without having to endure crying infants, stale air, and 3 inches of leg room for 21 hours twice in 2 weeks.  

What You Should Order: Kangaroo Ham (+$5.00), Australian Lamb Rack (+$10.00), Affogato

Resto_Logo

Cuisine: Belgian

Restaurant: Resto

Address: 111 East 29th Street New York, NY 10016

Why You Should Go: Resto’s attempt to replicate the quant bistros that are all over Paris and Brussels is spot on, and the food transports you to these foodie havens as well. Furthermore, Resto offers outdoor seating to add to the already wonderful dining experience.

What You Should Order: Country Ham, Chicken & Liege Waffles Bacon, Honey Panna Cotta

Vermillion

Cuisine: Eclectic

Restaurant: Vermillion

Address: 480 Lexington Ave., New York, NY 10017

Why You Should Go: Sticking with the theme of this article, Vermillion’s culinary exploration of the intersection of Indian and Latin-American cuisine is distinctive and playful. The Restaurant Week menu was not available at the time that I published this post, which usually keeps a restaurant off my list, but I am a sucker for Indian Cuisine and their regular menu looked straight up fantastic.

What You Should Order: Your guess is as good as mine…

 Noreetuh

Cuisine: Hawaiian

Restaurant: Noreetuh

Address: 128 First Avenue Manhattan, NY 10009

Why You Should Go: Why shouldn’t you go? Unless you have access to a private jet and unlimited money, I would imagine that you don’t eat traditional Hawaiian food very often. Noreetuh offers a small slice of paradise in this otherwise brick-faced world. Plus they have a decent craft beer list and an impressive wine selection to get you into that serious vacation mood.

What You Should Order: Noreetuh Salumi, Mentaiko Spaghetti, and King’s Hawaiian Bread Pudding

KHE YO

Cuisine: Laotian

Restaurant: Khe-Yo

Address: 157 Duane St. Manhattan, NY 10013

Why You Should Go: I pride myself on rocking every single style of food that I can literally and figuratively sink my teeth into, and I have yet to have Laotian food. So, to be honest, I am not exactly sure what I would order or if it will be at the level of some of the other spots on the list. However, I am damn sure, that it will be an experience and just a quick peek at their website will show you that although I can’t guarantee anything, I am betting on Khe-Yo punching me right in the taste buds.

What You Should Order: Maine Lobster Dumplings, Steamed Red Snapper in Banana Leaf, Vanilla Rice Pudding

 Pig and Khao

Cuisine: Malaysian

Restaurant: Pig And Khao

Address: 68 Clinton St. Manhattan, NY 10002

Why You Should Go: It is not a secret here on the internets that I love pork more than the internets loves videos of cats. I have a rule whenever I am searching for a restaurant or bar and it is quite simple; follow the pig. While it may have been the name of this eatery that drew me in, it was the pork centric menu that landed it on my exclusive list of where you should eat. Oh, Pig And Khao, you had me at Pork Jowls.

What You Should Order: Grilled Pork Jowl, Pork Belly Adobo, Baby Back Ribs, Turon

Russian Tea Room

Cuisine: Russian

Restaurant: The Russian Tea Room

Address: 150 W. 57th St. Manhattan, NY 10019

Why You Should Go: For 80 years, the Russian Tea Room and its ornate décor has been wining and dining NYC’s elite. Much like a baseball fan walking into Wrigley Field, a foodie can feel the culinary history oozing from this legendary eatery. Not to mention they have, arguably, the best Russian Food this side of the Atlantic.

What You Should Order:  Team Room Red Borscht, Boeuf à la Stroganoff, Cheesecake

Root and Bone

Cuisine: Southern Fare

Restaurant: Root & Bone

Address: 200 E. 3rd St. Manhattan, NY 10009

Why You Should Go: Southern food is not for everyone, I respect and acknowledge that. However, I assure you, Southern food is for me and that is why Root & Bone lands firmly on my short list of must visit eateries in NYC. Root & Bone combines high end comfort food, southern hospitality, and culinary expertise to form, IMHO, one of the best true eating experiences the city has to offer.

What You Should Order: Grandma Daisy’s Angel Biscuits, Braised Short Rib Meatloaf, and S’mores

socarrat paella bar

Cuisine: Spanish

Restaurant: Socarrat-Paella Bar

Address: 953 2nd Avenue New York, NY 10022 / 284 Mulberry Street New York, NY 10012 / 259 West 19th Street New York, NY 10011

Why You Should Go: What is not to like about Paella? The math is sound folks! Handfuls of amazingly seasoned seafood, meat, and vegetables + perfectly prepared rice + gigantic portions = Hot Damn. Socarrat-Paella Bar brings this amazing dish to Restaurant Week in style with several variations available.

What: Pulpo a la Plancha (Grilled Octopus), Paella de Arroz Negro (Seafood Paella with squid ink), and Churros Con Chocolate.

The Essential Epicurean Guide To NYC Restaurant Week Summer 2015

restaurant week NYC 2015For numerous years I have been an avid fan and participant of the NYC Restaurant Week movement. I know there are hundreds of haters that disagree with the savings, despise the menus, and talk shit about the service, but I am not one of them. If you are, kindly piss off and save your hate mail for some other blogger. However, if you are trying to choose an interesting restaurant to venture to this year please continue reading.

If you are like me and this is not your first time rocking Restaurant Week you are tired of the regular RW haunts.  If you are a virgin to the Restaurant Week game this post is really not for you.  Please go to the NYC GO website and do some research, I assure you it is totally worth it!  However, if you are tired of eating where Frank Sinatra punched Elvis in the junk, where Edgar Allen Poe wrote some words on a napkin that he blew his nose in, or at a spot that used to be hostel for starving artists that you have never heard of, this is the post for you!

This year my top 15 really has nothing to do with history, decor, or prominence.  My methodology was simple. I scoured the menus that were available for every restaurant on the RW list and picked out the ones that gave me a food boner.  Feast your eyes and get ready to hide your erection because without further ado, here are my selections for the summer session of the 2015 Restaurant Week!

Burke&WillsBurke & Wills:  This Australian eatery ain’t the fucking Outback!  It is the real deal and they serve actual Australian Cuisine. Their menu for this RW session offers the likes of Kangaroo, Octopus, Lamb, Veal Sweetbreads, and Prawns.  In other words, if you are looking for a little down under strange,  this is the place to visit!

The Cecil HarlemThe Cecil:  In the immortal words of Monty Python, “And now for something completely different.”  The Cecil is described as New York’s first Afro-Asian-American brasserie and it serves some exceptional dishes.  The highlights from their Restaurant Week Menu include Crispy Squash Blossoms served with Shrimp and for a ten dollar supplement you can sink your teeth into a Grilled Lamb Saddle topped with a Spicy Tomato Peanut Sauce.  Make sure you also sample a beer direct from Africa if you stop by the Cecil!

DBGB Kitchen And Bar DBGB Kitchen and Bar:  This downtown hot spot is what you get when a French brasserie meets an American tavern, has one too many and slips one past the goalie.  Normally, I would not recommend a burger during Restaurant Week but one look at their menu and I was dreaming of The Frenchie Burger, which is described as a 7 oz beef patty topped with confit pork belly, arugula, tomato-onion compote, and morbier cheese all served on a peppered brioche bun.  Not to mention DBGB offers 25 taps and 75 bottles of beer to wash down that behemoth burger.

InakayaInakaya:   It is true that not all sushi is created equal but for the most part great sushi is all pretty comparable.  Inakaya not only boasts remarkable sushi, which you can find on their RW Menu, but they also provide a show while you eat.  Inakaya uses the traditional method of Robata-Yaki, or Grilling Around a Sunken Hearth.  In other words the Chefs play to the crowd while they grill each dish in their open kitchen, using only the freshest ingredients they can find.

JunoonJunoon:  I am a sucker for Indian food, so I knew at least one of them would end up on this list.  The aroma, the depth of flavor, and the occasional heat not only intrigues me, but entices me like a bag o’ blow speaks to Charlie Sheen.  Junoon won me over the second I viewed their menu and saw the Bhut Jolokia which is described as a Ghost Chili Yogurt served with honey and 65% Chocolate.  Sure they have several great appetizers and entrees as well, but who cares… GHOST CHILI YOGURT!!!

Kin ShopKin Shop:  Kin is the Thai word for eat, and at this casual yet hip establishment that is exactly what you will want to do. In a sea of Thai restaurants that are popping up faster than pimples on a teenager, Kin Shop really is one of the Stand Outs.  What caught my eye of this menu was the Steamed Bouchot Mussels that are served in a Siamese Curry Sauce and the Braised Hampshire Pork served in a Panang Curry.  Deal with it, I am a curry whore!

L'Ecole, The Restaurant Of The International Culinary Center:L’Ecole, The Restaurant Of The International Culinary Center:  Ever wonder where tomorrows top chefs hone their skills?  Question no more, L’Ecole is the culinary world’s Minor Leagues and some of these powerhouses are ready to be called up to the Bigs.  I am a storyteller, as you can tell, so the chance to eat a dish prepared by a Chef that potentially could be the next James Beard is just too good to pass up.  Not to mention, their menu is quite extensive! If my ass lands in one of their seats I will be dining on the Country Pate with Truffles, Pistachios, and Cornichons and The Roasted Duck Leg served with House Made Pappardelle.  I don’t care what Daffy says, for me it is always Duck Season.

Le ColonialLe Colonial:  Both the decor and the menu serve as a “tip of the hat,” to a forgotten time when Southeast Asia was colonized by France.  The fare is generally traditional Vietnamese but possesses a French flair that adds a subtle, yet wonderful uniqueness to each and every one of their dishes.  If you choose this spot I recommend the Suon Nuong: Grilled Baby Back Ribs served with Lemongrass and a Sweet Soy Sauce paired with The Trio: Grilled Prawns, Beef Brochettes, and Cha Gio Herbed Vermicelli Salad.

Miss Lily'sMiss Lily’s:  My Boxador, half Boxer and half Labrador, is named Lilly, so I immediately checked this restaurant’s menu out  when I saw it was participating in Restaurant Week.  Furthermore, ever since I got back from the Caribbean I have been craving Jerk, just about anything.  Enter Miss Lily’s, bringing Jerk BBQ Ribs, Jerk Grilled Corn, and Jerk Chicken to the RW world.  To top it all off their is a Curried Goat dish that needs to be in my belly immediately!

Mr. Chow'sMr. Chow’s: This ain’t your corner Chinese Restaurant!  The menu is not delivered to your door, nor is it depicted by 1970’s photos on a giant back lit rectangle that hangs above the counter.  The menu at Mr. Chow’s is comprised of a combination of old Beijing cuisine and original recipes that have been delighting New York’s fashion and music elite for damn near 30 years.  The name of the game here is Family Style Dining, so bring people that like to share, and don’t miss the Famous Mr. Chow Noodles.

Park Avenue SummerPark Avenue Summer:  Talk about trendy!  This epic eatery not only seasonally changes their menu but they change the entire decor as well.  P.A.S. makes my top 15 due to the amount of choices they offer on their Restaurant Week Menu.  Most places offer a very limited selection but Park Avenue Summer is offering 6 different options for both the appetizer and the entree portion of the meal.  If you are looking to hit up RW with a semi-large group, I assure you that everyone will be able to find something that tickles their fancy. However, if someone doesn’t order the Dr. Pepper Baby Back Ribs you have failed Restaurant Week and you should be ashamed of yourself.

RaymiRaymi:  Raymi is an upscale Peruvian Restaurant that blends the flavors and culinary traditions of Spain, Japan, Chinese and Peru itself. The star of Raymi’s Menu is the Ceviche that captures the savory yet elegant taste that only this delicacy can deliver.  Not only can you score some of this amazing seafood but you can pair it with some Carapulcra, or Roasted Pork Belly.  If you are not into Ceviche, I suggest you rock the Pulpo Meloso, or Charred Octopus, which I might suggest Kat gets when we go, so I can try both.

Roots and BonesRoot and Bone:  No food sticks to your bones like Soul Food, and even though it is summer time I simply can’t say no to this Uber comfort food.  If you enter this restaurant and don’t order the Award Winning, Fried Chicken and Waffles you are no longer allowed to read my blog, so lucky for both of us it is on the RW menu!  I am sure the other items are solid but FRIED CHICKEN AND WAFFLES!!!  As a bonus, if you are ginger and eat here enough, you might acquire a soul…  I kid, I kid, there is no way for gingers to get a soul.

smogas chef Smorgas Chef:  Raise your hand if you knew a Scandinavian Restaurant resided in the Big Apple.  Keep it up if you can tell me what the hell Scandinavians eat. Unless your name is Thor or Dag I doubt you are well versed in the viking way of life.   Well one night out of this establishment and you can school all your friends about this obscure cuisine. I highly recommend The Classic Smorgasbord from the menu simply because I can’t pronounce half the items that are on it and that is how I roll! Furthermore, I am like 80% sure it will taste as good as most Scandinavian ladies look.

Yerba BuenaYerba Buena:  Yerba may be somewhat small compared to other restaurants in NYC, but their flavors are gigantic.  Not to mention their menu had me drooling all over my keyboard.  They are dishing out Duck Confit Empanadas and Suckling Pig Carnitas during this session of Restaurant Week and if that doesn’t make you wanna jump on the Subway right the fuck now, I feel like I don’t know you anymore.

That is my list ladies and gentleman!  Remember, Restaurant Week is all about exploring the greatest city in the world and sampling the amazing culinary treats it has to offer.  The summer session is running from July 21, 2015 until August 15, 2015 and I highly recommend not only stepping out of your comfort zone while dining at these establishments but leaving it so far behind you that you never think about stepping into it again.

 

The Ultimate 2015 NYC Restaurant Week Survival Guide

NYC Restaurant Week

Well, it is that time of year again folks. Old man winter is being his normal douchebag self and the rich folk are hibernating or vacationing. We can all put on our Grumpy Cat sweat shirts, hunker down in our houses, and hate them as hard as Yankee fans will soon hate A-Roid or we can embrace one of the few perks that accompanies this frigid season.

Since this is a food blog it should be quite obvious that I am referring to the bi-annual event known as Restaurant Week. From February 16, 2015 until March 6, 2015 we, the commoners, can dine like royalty for a fraction of the normal damage that these heavy-weight gastronomic contenders would normally do to our wallets.

Instead of bills that are larger than the New York Mets budget for 2015, if you visit one of the 340 restaurants that are participating in Restaurant Week this year (The most ever by the way), you will only pay $25.00 for Lunch and $38.00 for Dinner. To make things even better, those prices include an appetizer, an entree, and a dessert.

As with everything else in life, you should always be wary of deals that sound too good to be true, and there are a few things one should know before you venture out to the great city of Gotham, in search of foodie gold.

1: Friends Don’t Let Friends Binge Drink and Dine

This ain’t college anymore Jockey Mc. FratPants. At this fine establishments the hooch is expensive and the fare is skillfully seasoned. If you still answer to a nickname such as Drunk Tom, The Slutbuster, or Senor Tequila, this event may not be for you.

Furthermore, if you are from New Jersey you are probably used to BYOB establishments that help alleviate the cost of dining out at most local restaurants. In New York, however, liquor licenses are easier to get than the internet clap from a torrent file. The liquor bill at these eateries can quickly and inadvertently surpass the price of the food, thus negating the savings you expected. I suggest meeting your party at a local bar in the neighborhood for a little pregame, drinking a moderately priced wine with your meal, and then finding an inexpensive night cap location before heading out of the city.

2: Do Your Homework

With 340 restaurants to choose from, follow the phrase, “know before you go.” A restaurant that is participating in Restaurant Week but does not display a menu on their website is not an automatic no, but it does raise a red flag. Think of your Tinder account here guys, would you meet that random horny cougar without at least seeing her slightly blurry, ten year old photo that was taken from an angle that only the Hubble telescope could actually capture. In other words, do your research and you will not be disappointed.

3: Suit-Up…Maybe

A lot of these establishments have a dress code and these rules are strictly enforced. You are not going to White Castle after a Tigerman show at the Clash Bar. Always check the website of the eatery of your choosing to find out what the required level of dress is for both males and females. I love jeans and a t-shirt, but nothing is worse than arriving at one of these restaurants with your lovely significant other in tow and being turned away at the door because you are rocking the wrong gear.

4: Arrive On Time

Most of the participating restaurants add extra tables and bring on additional servers for this epic event because they are booked solid for the entire duration of Restaurant Week. This means if you are late for your reservation they will give your table away without a second thought. The excuses that normally work at most eateries, simply won’t fly. Telling a New Yorker you got stuck in traffic will get you as much sympathy as telling your girlfriend that you cheated on her because you were drunk, and you thought you were playing the bongos on her ass. Do yourself a favor and get a late reservation so your on-time arrival is guaranteed and you can get your pregame on properly.

5: Eat Outside Your Comfort Zone

Restaurant Week is all about expanding your culinary aptitude and foodie street cred. This is not the time to order a safe meal that you can acquire at any old eatery. In other words go big or don’t go at all. I assure you, everything you eat at these restaurants is going to taste good, so why not try the grilled octopus instead of the Caesar salad or perhaps order the Foie Gras as opposed to the French Onion Soup. Your Instagram followers and your belly will thank you.

Since the number of restaurants that are involved in Restaurant Week can be slightly intimidating, I have decided to do you a solid. I have scoured through this year’s participants and have chosen what I consider to be the best of the best. The following are The Blue Collar Foodie’s Top Picks for each most of the culinary styles that appear on this massive list. This is by no means an all inclusive list and if you are a seasoned NYCRW veteran, I urge you to explore the directory on your own. However, if you are new to this game these are a few of the restaurants that will impress even the most persnickety epicurean.

American New

Park Avenue Winter

Park Avenue WinterWhere:

360 Park Ave. South (Park Av So/26 St)

Manhattan, NY 10010

212-644-1900

http://www.parkavenyc.com

Why:

This trendy eatery changes its name, design, and menu along with the seasons. Even if you were to eat at this spot four times a year, you would never get bored.

What:

Appetizer: Steak Tartare Rossini Foie Gras & Black Truffle ($5 supplement)

Entrée: Everything-Crusted Branzino with Smoked Cream Cheese and Pickled Onions

Dessert: Salted Pistachio Sundae with Orange Marmalade and Dark Chocolate Caramel

American Traditional

21 Club

21 ClubWhere:

21 West 52nd Street

New York, NY 10019

(212) 582-7200

http://www.21club.com/

Why:

Once a Pimp Ass speakeasy, this now upscale restaurant is not only celebrated but it is a celebrity favorite as well. If you are a TMZ fan, this one is for you. Some of the A-listers that have dined at this spot include; Harrison Ford, Bill Fucking Murray, Bill and Melinda Gates, Bo Jackson, Ernest Hemingway, and Frank Sinatra. Hell, the last time I ate at the 21 we were sitting two tables away from Geraldo Rivera and his super stashe.

*DRESS CODE: No jeans or sneakers. Jackets are necessary for gentlemen.

What:

Appetizer: Head-On Maya Prawn – Tomato Eggplant Chutney, Picholine Olives, Lemon Preserve, Chili Oil

Entrée: Lamb Bolognese – Garganelli Pasta, Roasted Tomatoes, Basil, Chili Flakes, Manchego

Dessert: Caramel Banana Sundae – Cookies and Cream Ice Cream, Whiskey Caramel, Banana Slices

Asian Fusion

Spice Market

Spice MarketWhere:

403 W. 13th St. (13 St/9 Av)

Manhattan, NY 10014

212-675-2322

www.spicemarketnewyork.com

Why:

This Meatpacking District gem focuses on Asian inspired street food the Chef fell in love with while traveling throughout South East Asia.  

What:

Appetizer: Soy Cured Salmon with Cilantro Crème Fraiche

Entrée: Roast Pork Steamed Buns with Yuzu Pickles and Chili

Dessert: Sweet Potato Ice Cream with Pomegranate and Condensed Milk

Brazilian

Fogo de Chão Churrascaria Brazilian Steakhouse

Fogo de ChaoWhere:

40 W. 53rd St. (53 St/6 Av)

Manhattan, NY 10019

212-969-9980

www.fogodechao.com

Why:

Fogo de Chão is a Churrascaria. In English, that roughly translates to MEAT! Holy Hot Damn, MEAT Everywhere! With unlimited trips to the salad bar, bread and side dishes served at the table, and endless cuts of Sirloin, Leg of Lamb, Pork Sausage, Pork Ribs, Pork Loin, and Chicken Breast wrapped in Bacon you better wear your buffet pants.

What:  

EVERYTHING YOU GLUTTONOUS BEAUTIFUL BASTARD!!!!

Chinese

Hakkasan New York

Hakkasan New YorkWhere:

311 W. 43rd St. (43 St/8 Av)

Manhattan, NY 10036

212-776-1818

www.hakkasan.com

Why:

It is one of only a few Restaurant Week Participants that is rocking a coveted Michelin star.

What:

Appetizer: Hakka Fried Dim Sum Platter – Sesame Prawn Toast with Foie Gras, Crispy Fried Prawn Dumpling with Plum Sauce

Entrée: Tofu, Aubergine and Shiitake Mushroom Clay Pot with Chili Black Bean Sauce

Dessert: Mango Parfait – Pink grapefruit & Szechuan Sorbet with Coconut Dacquoise

Continental
Petrossian

petrossianWhere:

182 W. 58th St. (58 St/7 Av)

Manhattan, NY 10019

212-245-2214

www.petrossian.com

Why:

If you are looking to impress, this is the spot to take that someone special. Quiet, extravagant, and romantic are adjectives that have been used to describe this French influenced foodie haven. I am usually against a large supplement cost but Petrossian is so well known for their Caviar, I suggest you shell out the extra $12 bucks and eat some serious Fish Eggs.

What:
Appetizer: Transmontanus USA farmed caviar 12 g presentation ($ 12.00 supplement)

Entrée: Pan Roasted West Coast Sturgeon with Cauliflower Ribs, Zucchini Pearls, and Stewed Eggplant

Dessert: Flourless Chocolate Mousse Cake

French

Benoit Restaurant & Bar

BENOIT NYCWhere:

60 W. 55th St. (55 St/6 Av)

Manhattan, NY 10019

646-943-7373

www.benoitny.com

Why:

Since most of us can’t jump on our G6 and float over to Paris any damn time we want, we rarely get to experience an authentic French Bistro. That is until Benoit opened its doors in 2005. The highly touted Chef Alain Ducasse is in charge of the Kitchen and each dish prepared in this classy joint illustrates his immense skill and training.

What:

Appetizer: Escargots

Entrée: Roasted Pork Loin with Creamy Polenta and Prune Sauce

Dessert: Soufflé glace a l’orange

Greek

Kefi

Kefi NYCWhere:

505 Columbus Ave. (Columbus/85)

Manhattan, NY 10024

212-873-0200

www.kefirestaurant.com

Why:

With two huge culinary names involved in this venture, Chef Michael Psilakis and Donatella Arpaia, you know Kefi is going to deliver some serious eats. This is one of the few restaurants I will recommend without seeing the Restaurant Week Menu because that star power holds weight!

What:

Game time decision.

Indian

Junoon

junoon nycWhere:

27 W. 24th St. (24 St/5 Av)

Manhattan, NY 10010

212-490-2100

www.junoonnyc.com

Why:

Junoon means passion and after one visit to this sophisticated Indian restaurant you will understand why they named it that. Junoon is not only gorgeous but it very well may serve the best Indian Cuisine in NYC. Not to mention the fact that it is also a Michelin Star recipient.

What:

Appetizer: Murgh Bhut Jolokia – Chicken Tikka with Spaghetti Squash, Pistachio, and Ghost Chili

Entrée: Kashmiri Rogan Josh – Lamb Shank with Cashew Yogurt Gravy

Dessert: Dark Chocolate Blood Orange Ras Malai Terrine

Italian

Trattoria Il Mulino

Il Mulino Trattoria Where:

36 E. 20th St. (20 St/Park Av So)

Manhattan, NY 10003

212-777-8448

trattoriailmulino.com

Why:

Leaving New Jersey for an Italian joint is like exiting New York City to score a slice of Pizza. If you are however in the mood for Italian, I highly recommend this trendy Trattoria with an industrial twist. This may not look like Uncle Sal’s corner eatery; but this hip, edgy spot knocks out the classics, just like Nonna used to make.

What:

Hipsters don’t post Menus!

Japanese

Nobu Next Door

Nobu Next Door Where:

105 Hudson St. (Hudson/Franklin)

Manhattan, NY 10013

212-334-4445

www.noburestaurants.com

Why:

Much like its sister restaurant Nobu, the fare served at Next Door is world renowned and delightfully prepared. The design and environment of Next Door adds a dash of culture to the overall meal experience that is well worth the wait.  You can try to call ahead but they rarely take reservations.

What:

Appetizer: Black Cod Miso on Limestone Lettuce

Entrée: Assorted Sushi

Dessert: Chef’s selection dessert

Korean

Bann Restaurant and Lounge

Bann NYCWhere:

350 W. 50th Street

New York, NY 10019   (between 8th & 9th Ave)

Phone: (212) 582-4446

http://www.bannrestaurant.com

Why:

You will notice that there are two Korean restaurants that landed on this list. I honestly could not decide which one of these jaw dropping spots to suggest so after a great deal of hemming and hawing, I decided to declare the battle a draw.

Bann, the first of the two, is a unique and interactive restaurant that calls upon your skills as a Chef by allowing you to cook your own meals on their smokeless tabletop grills. Of course, if you are reluctant to participate in this endeavor the actual Chef will prepare your meals for you, because you are lame. The cook your own option at Bann adds an element of fun to your evening and may even cause the members of your group to actually put their cell phones down at the table.

What:

Appetizer: Bossam Bun – Roast Pork Belly, Spicy Daikon, And Sweet Soy on Steamed Buns

Entrée: Korean Barbecue

Dessert: Carrot Cake – Asian Spiced Carrot & Yuja Pineapple Cake with Vanilla Ice Cream

Gaonnuri

GaonnuriWhere:

1250 Broadway, 39th fl. (Broadway/32 St)

Manhattan, NY 10001

212-971-9045

http://www.gaonnurinyc.com/authentic_korean_restaurant_nyc/

Why:

Gaonnuri is located in a 39th floor penthouse in Koreatown and offers awe-inspiring views of the greatest city in the world. To be honest, Gaonnuri could serve  McDonald’s in a dining room like this and still make a killing.  However, they choose to serve some of the best Korean Food in the city, only adding to the appeal of this spot.

What:

Appetizer: Bossam – Braised Pork Belly with Kimchi made with Octopus, and Perilla Leaves

Entrée: Duck Breast BBQ

Dessert: Chef’s Choice

Mediterranean

Taboon

taboon NYCWhere:

773 Tenth Ave. (10 Av/53 St)

Manhattan, NY 10019

212-713-0271

http://www.taboononline.com/

Why:

Taboon combines the vibrant spices of the Middle East with the alluring flavors of the Mediterranean to create innovative dishes that will awake your taste buds.   This may not be the most expensive restaurant on the list, but the food they are cooking in their wood fire oven is equal if not better to the big dogs.

What:

Appetizer: Black Tuscan Kale with Feta Cheese, Shaved Fennel, Cucumber, Apple, Sunflower Seeds, Lemon juice, Olive oil and Sumac dressing

Entrée:   Pressed Lamb Belly Moussaka with Tomato and Eggplant Puree, Fingerling Potatoes, and Kashkaval Cheese

Dessert: Silan – Vanilla Ice Cream layered with Puffed Rice and Date Syrup, sprinkled with Caramelized Pistachios & topped with shredded Halva

Mexican

Empellón Taqueria

Empellon TaqueriaWhere:

230 W. 4th St. (W 4 St/10 St)

Manhattan, NY 10014

212-367-0999

www.empellon.com

Why:

Empellón Taqueria opened their doors in 2011 with the intention of treating tacos with a high level of respect and serving them in a fun environment. They have accomplished that mission and then some. If you are a Taco lover, like my wife Kat, this is the spot for you. For all the haters that are reading this thinking, “Tacos can’t be classy,” stuff a burrito in your pie whole and check out the sick menu they are offering for Restaurant Week.

What:

Appetizer: Ceviche – Octopus, Parsnip Pumpkin Seeds, and Salsa Papanteca

Entrée: Shortrib Pastrami Tacos with Pickled Cabbage and Mustard Seed Salsa.

Dessert: Milk Chocolate Flan

Pan-Latin

Yerba Buena

yerba BuenaWhere:

23 Ave. A (Av A/2 St)

Manhattan, NY 10009

212-529-2919

http://www.ybnyc.com/media/yerbabuena.html

Why:

I had a rough time choosing a Pan-Latin representative for my list because I have not visited very many of them in the city. Then I read the menu that Yerba Buena is offering for Restaurant Week and my belly had a foodgasm. I dare you to read the menu and not hit this Latin inspired eatery up… Go ahead, I will wait… Told you so!

What:

Appetizer: Empanadas de Pato – Duck Confit Tinga, Salsa Mexicana, Crema, and Queso Fresco

Entrée: Lechon – Suckling Pig Carnitas, Habanero-Orange Salsa, Cactus Salad, and Chicharron

Dessert: Tres Leches – Crema de Cajeta, Tres Leches Sauce, and Vanilla Ice Cream

Seafood

The Sea Grill

The Sea Grill NYCWhere:

19 W. 49th St. (49 St/5 Av)

Manhattan, NY 10020

212-332-7610 | fax: 212-332-7677

www.theseagrillnyc.com

Why:

The Sea Grill is another prime example of how Restaurants are a lot like Real Estate. Location, location, location! If you are looking for some relationship points, bring your beau Ice Skating at the Rockefeller Center Ice Rink before walking hand in hand to this absolutely stunning seafood eatery. Watch as they Instagram the night away and each LIKE those filtered photos garner you will earn you one more cool point! You’re welcome!

What:  

Appetizer: Montauk Baby Calamari a la Plancha with Patatas Bravas and Chimichurri sauce

Entrée: Maine Monkfish ‘Osso Buco’ with Creamy Polenta and Wild Mushrooms

Dessert: Vanilla Caramel Panna Cotta with Valrhona Chocolate Sorbet

Steakhouse

MarkJoseph Steakhouse

MarkJoseph Steakhouse Where:

261 Water St. (Water St/Peck Slip)

Manhattan, NY 10038

212-277-0020

www.markjosephsteakhouse.com

Why:

Restaurant Week is usually not the best time to visit a Steakhouse in NYC.   The truth is, if you want a slamming steak in the Big Apple you normally have to bite the bullet and pay out the nose. However, MarkJoseph Steakhouse is the exception that proves this rule. They are offering a 20 oz. sirloin or an 8 oz. Filet Mignon on their dinner menu.  Get your meat on!

What:

Appetizer: Sizzling Canadian Bacon

Entrée: Sirloin Steak 20 oz.

Dessert: Cake

Vietnamese

Le Colonial

Le ColonialWhere:

149 E. 57th St. (57 St/3 Av)

New York, NY 10022

212-752-0808

www.lecolonialnyc.com

Why:

Le Colonial was once a bustling haven for OG foodies in the NYC area and then for some reason lost its place in the culinary pantheon of Gotham. Instead of closing up shop and admitting defeat, however, this restaurant found a new Chef that seems to have set Le Colonial back on the path of Gastronomic greatness.

What:

Appetizer: Suon Nuong – Grilled Baby Back Ribs with Lemongrass and Sweet Soy

Entrée: Bun Trio – Grilled Prawns with Beef Brochettes & Cha Gio Herbed Vermicelli Salad

Dessert: Banana Tapioca Pudding

A Drink A Day Keeps The Sober Away: The Blue Collar Foodie’s Daily Excuses To Drink Your Face Off!

A While back I was playing beer pong at a family barbecue, and a well-seasoned relative walked up to the table. He stared intently as the game progressed, and we could almost see the gears working in his head. Finally, I asked if he wanted to play the next game. To this our kin simply replied, I don’t think so. I then asked him why not. To that he said what will go down in the annals of our family as the single best response/rant that has ever been uttered by anyone that has ever climbed our family tree.

He once again gazed at the table and then glared back at us while he slowly stroked his gray and sparse beard. You see, he said, I have studied this game for quite some time, and I believe it to be not only dumb but a gigantic waste of time. We began to protest, but he merely lifted his finger, as if to say, let me finish, and we all allowed him to go on.

If I got the rules right, he continued, the team with the ball is trying to throw the ball into the other team’s cups. If the team on offense makes said ball into said cup then the other team drinks. So essentially, your idea of a drinking game, is not to drink, he asked with a smile on his face?

Once again we tried to answer this obvious rhetorical question, but the finger interrupted on more time. Let me show you booze toddlers the only drinking game I have ever played. It is far better this one of the countless others I have watched you play over the years…

Then he paused for a moment. He knew he had us on the hook. We all thought we were about to learn an ancient long lost drinking game that we could post to Reddit and gain thousands of Karma Points. The anticipation was killing us.

The silence was broken by our kinsman lifting his beer slowly to his mouth and taking a large sip from the cup. He lowered the beer from his mouth as slow as he raised it and began to speak. “I Win!” he said.

We all tilted our heads like a puppy who just heard a word that his owner had never uttered before. He slowly lifted the cup back to his mouth and took another long sip, and said, “I win again.” We all groaned, the others that started listening halfway through chuckled, and our dear old relative walked away while taking one last sip proclaiming under his breath and almost to himself, that he won again before releasing a slow soft snicker.

The moral of this story is that most Americans, at least the ones that were born in the 70’s or later need a reason to drink. Apparently, science has decided that drinking on a random Tuesday is called alcoholism, but drinking on a Tuesday because it’s St. Patrick’s Day is normal social behavior.

With that said, I have devised the perfect plan to not feel like a pariah for drinking on any day I damn well please. May I present to you, The Blue Collar Foodies’ 365 reasons to get CRUNK! Pick a day, any day, find it below, and celebrate whatever silly ass holiday is listed. Now drunken holidays are not only for the Irish and The Mexicans, but for the Americans as well! ‘Merica!

Craft Beer AmericaBorrowed From Here

January 1

Bad Hangover Day

Excuse to drink: To hell with science, hair of the dog just makes sense!

 

January 2

Happy Mew Year for Cats Day

Excuse to drink: Cats can’t, that’s why!

 

January 3

Women Rock! Day

Excuse to drink: If you are a woman, raise a glass to yourself and If you are a man, take a shot in honor of a woman that rocked your world!

 

January 4

Isaac Newton’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: I fucking love Science and so should you!

 

January 5

Bozo the Clown’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: Clowns are freaking scary, drink to forget their creepiness!

It is ScaryBorrowed From Here

January 6

National Smith Day

Excuse to drink: Drink a Samuel Smiths today! You are also traditionally supposed to hug anyone named Smith.

 

January 7

Fruitcake Toss Day

Excuse to drink: Lawn sports and drinking go so very well together!

 

January 8

Elvis Presley’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: Celebrate Fat Elvis by drinking your carbs one pint at a time. I suggest drinking Sweet Baby Jesus, a chocolate peanut butter porter.

 

January 9

Word Nerd Day

Excuse to drink: Scrabble and Scotch make you feel like a freaking aristocrat until you start spelling nothing but obscenities and sexual positions.

 

January10

Peculiar People Day

Excuse to drink: People are strange but drunk people are so much fun!

Strange DaysBorrowed From here

January 11

International Thank You Day

Excuse to drink: There is no better way to say thank you than giving the gift of booze.

 

January 12

National Pharmacist Day

Excuse to drink: Self Medication!

 

January 13

Blame Somebody Else Day

Excuse to drink: Nothing encourages unprompted finger pointing like tying one on.

 

January 14

National Dress Up Your Pet Day

Excuse to drink: Question: What is better than a pet in a costume? Answer: A pet in a costume while you are drunk!

Atata Dog Borrowed From Here

January 15

Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday

Excuse to drink: Everyone should pour a little out for this dude.

 

January 16

National Nothing Day

Excuse to drink: Ain’t nothing better than Drinking and doing nothing!

 

January 17

Ben Franklin’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: Ben loved himself some beer, and you should too.

 

January 18

Winnie-the-Pooh Day

Excuse to drink: If Christopher Robin can trip, you should be able to at least drink some booze.

 

January 19

New Friends Day

Excuse to drink: They don’t call it Social Lubricant for nothing.

 

January 20

Cheese Day

Excuse to drink: Cheese goes with Wine, Beer, and Hooch like NPH and awesome.

 

January 21

National Hugging Day

Excuse to drink: Drunk hugs are better than sober ones, and sometimes lead to naked hugging!

 

January 22

Answer Your Cat’s Question Day

Excuse to drink: Your cat is obviously asking, “why aren’t you drinking?”

 CatquestionBorrowed From Here

January 23

Spouse’s Day

Excuse to drink: Nothing says I love you like sloppy drunk sex.

 

January 24

“Just Do It” Day

Excuse to drink: The name of the damn day says so!

 

January 25

Fun At Work Day

Excuse to drink: The only way to have fun at work is to drink a few special lattes in the morning.

 

January 26

Australia Day

Excuse to drink: Aussie’s know how to drink and you need the practice!

Aussie Greg

January 27

Mad Tea Party Day

Excuse to drink: Celebrate Lewis Carroll by getting as drunk as the door mouse.

 

January 28

Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day

Excuse to drink: Apparently you have never played with bubble wrap while drunk?

 

January 29

Free Thinkers Day

Excuse to drink: Alcohol and free thinking are better friends than Hugh Hefner and Pfizer.

 

January 30

National Croissant Day

Excuse to drink: Mimosas anyone!

 

January 31

Jackie Robinson’s Birthday  

Excuse to drink: Baseball!

Jackie Robinson Borrowed From Here

February 1

National Freedom Day

Excuse to drink: Celebrate your freedom one drink at a time

 

February 2

Groundhog Day

Excuse to drink: If there are six more weeks of winter drink your sorrows away, if spring is coming it is a celebration bitches!

Ground Hog Day Borrowed From Here

February 3

Halfway Point of Winter

Excuse to drink: Doesn’t matter what Punxsutawney Phil said yesterday, winter is officially half over!

 

February 4

Rosa Park’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: Rosa Park was a bad ass bitch and she should be celebrated!

 

February 5

Peter Pan Day  

Excuse to drink: I will never grow up and neither should you!

 

February 6

Pay a Compliment Day

Excuse to drink: Compliments flow better when booze is being poured liberally.

 

February 7

Dump Your Significant Jerk Day

Excuse to drink: Lose the zero, and start drinking with a hero!

Jerk StoreBorrowed From Here

February 8

Mike Day internationally recognized focal point of month-long celebration Mikefest

Excuse to drink: Considering it seems like 75% of the world is named Mike, I am sure you can find one to drink in honor of. Hint: My name is Mike!

 

February 9

National Bagels and Lox Day

Excuse to drink: Best Brunch Food Ever!

 

February 10

World Marriage Day:

Excuse to drink: Whether it is your own or somebody else’s, raise your glass in honor of the love and commitment that makes marriage work.

 

February 11

Promise Day

Excuse to drink: Lower your inhibitions and make a promise to yourself that you force yourself to keep.

 

February 12  

Darwin Day

Excuse to drink: Beer and spirits are proof of evolution, drink to Darwin!

Evolution Borrowed From Here

February 13

Get a Different Name Day    

Excuse to drink: Sounds like a fun drinking name.

 

February 14

Valentine’s Day

Excuse to drink: Celebrate being loved, or drink your sorrow away.

 

February 15

Susan B. Anthony’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: Chicks can vote because of this brolick bitch, take a shot for her, hell take two.

 

February 16

Do a Grouch a Favor Day

Excuse to drink: Go to your local bar and by the grumpiest curmudgeon you can find a shot.

Cantankerous people need booze too.

 

February 17

Random Acts of Kindness Day

Excuse to drink: Buy a round for your friends and tip well.

 

February 18

Pluto Discovered (1930)

Excuse to drink: Drink one for our fallen planet homie.

 Pluto is SadBorrowed From Here

February 19

International Friendship Day

Excuse to drink: Here is to friends, without them we would never know when we are acting like a douche.

 

February 20

Love Your Pet Day

Excuse to drink: Raise your glass to unconditional love and constant affection.

 

February 21

Ash Wednesday

Excuse to drink: You have dirt on your head and everyone is staring at you.

 

February 22

George Washington’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: G Dub did not open a can of whoop ass all over the British so you could lollygag around and be useless. He did it so he could grow hemp and drink whenever the hell he pleased. Since the federal government still disagrees with the hemp part, drink up, because it is was our founding fathers would have wanted.

 

February 23

National Rationalization Day

Excuse to drink: Be honest, you are reading a blog to find an excuse to drink. Let’s use today to come to terms that you are a functioning alcoholic and move on. DRINK!

 

February 24

National Tortilla Chip Day

Excuse to drink: These Tortillas are making me THIRSTY!

 

February 25

Quiet Day

Excuse to drink: Drinking is quieter than chewing.

 

February 26

Tell a Fairy Tale Day

Excuse to drink: Drunk stories are always better than sober stories.

 

February 27

No Brainer Day

Excuse to drink: DRINK!

 

February 28

International Pancake Day

Excuse to drink: I smell Brunch!

Uncle Buck PancakeBorrowed From Here

February 29

Leap Day

Excuse to drink: You only get an extra day to drink once every four years!

 

March 1

National Pig Day

Excuse to drink: Always follow the pig!

Follow The Pig Borrowed From Here

March 2

Old Stuff Day

Excuse to drink: Time to break out the good stuff, nothing aged under 18 years today.

 

March 3

What if Cats and Dogs Had Opposable Thumbs? Day

Excuse to drink:   They would crack open a beer and so should you!

 

March 4

Hug a GI Day

Excuse to drink: While you are at it, buy them a shot too.

 

March 5

Mother – in – Law Day

Excuse to drink: With her or because of her, bottoms up!

 

March 6

Alamo Day

Excuse to drink: REMEMBER THE ALAMO!

 

March 7

National Be Heard Day

Excuse to drink: No one is louder than a drunk.

 

March 8

Aunt’s Day

Excuse to drink: We are not talking about Aunt Flow here either people; invite your favorite Aunt out for a pint.

 

March 9

Employee Appreciation Day

Excuse to drink: We are all employed by someone, this time we get to celebrate ourselves.

Dwight Awards Borrowed From Here

March 10

Harriet Tubman’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: Harriet Tubman was born a slave; escaped, used the Underground Railroad to save at least seventy enslaved family and friends, and was a Union Spy. If that is not reason enough to drink, I do not know what is.

 

March 11

Ezra Jack Keats Birthday (The Snowy Day)

Excuse to drink: Books are great! Drinking is great! Coincidence I think not.

 

March 12

National Organize your home office day

Excuse to drink: I guess, “move a few sheets of paper around every now and again so your significant other thinks you’re working, while you get drunk and play Playstation Day,” was too long of a title.

 

March 13

Planet Uranus Discovered

Excuse to drink: Drink in honor of the only planet that makes even grown adults chuckle every time someone says its name.

 

March 14

Pi (3.14159265…) Day

Excuse to drink: Seriously! Come on people, it is a day that is also a mathematical symbol! If you don’t know why you are celebrating today, I ain’t telling you!

Twisted Elm PiBorrowed From Here

March 15

True Confession Day

Excuse to drink: Nothing brings out a good old fashioned Catholic style confession like a bottle of hooch.

 

March 16

Everything You Do Is Right Day

Excuse to drink: If you do it, it is right!

 

March 17

St. Patrick’s Day

Excuse to drink: I will not dignify this with a response!

Pig BeerBorrowed From Here

March 18

Awkward Moments Day

Excuse to drink: As Big Bird would say, Today is brought to you by the Letters A.B.V.

 

March 19

Let’s Laugh Day

Excuse to drink: Everything is funnier when you are lit up!

 

March 20

Snowman Burning Day

Excuse to drink: Seriously people, read up on this day. Then grab some friends, some booze, a giant paper snowman, and some matches!

 

March 21

National Single Parents Day

Excuse to drink: Drink because they can’t!

 

March 22

As Young As You Feel Day

Excuse to drink: I see shots of Fireball and Jägermeister in your immediate future!

March 23

Near Miss Day

Excuse to drink: Back in 1989 a gigantic asteroid barely missed turning Earth into a flaming donut of death. Have one now because you never know when we are going to have to try to send Bruce Willis to outer space to save the world.

Asteroid Impact Borrowed From Here

March 24

National Family Day

Excuse to drink: Drink with your relatives!

 

March 25

National Waffle Day

Excuse to drink: BRUNCH AGAIN!

 

March 26

Make up your own Holiday Day

Excuse to drink: Now this sounds like a solid drinking game!

 

March 27

Michael Jon Arp’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: Your kids will be celebrating this day in the future; you might as well get a head start.

 

March 28

Something on a stick day

Excuse to drink: Nothing goes better with anything served on a stick than a nice cold beer.

 

March 29

National Mom & Pop Small Business owners Day

Excuse to drink: Fun fact: Most bars are small businesses and family owned. Furthermore, most family owned businesses are B.Y.O.B.

BIMS-Pizza-BldgBorrowed From Here

March 30

Pencil with Eraser Patented (1858)

Excuse to drink: Mistakes are meant to be made, keep drinking.

 

March 31

National Farm Workers Day

Excuse to drink: They work harder than you will ever work so you can have fresh vegetable in your salad. You better drink in their honor.

 

April 1

April Fool’s Day

Excuse to drink: You were had all day, you might as well have one.

 

April 2

Reconciliation Day

Excuse to drink: Patch up an old friend ship over a few drinks.

 

April 3

World Party Day

Excuse to drink: What is a party without booze!

Earth PartyBorrowed From Here

April 4

Walk Around Things Day

Excuse to drink: Might as well drink while you are walking around things.

 

April 5

Stories Day

Excuse to drink: You can’t tell a story about being drunk properly unless you are drunk.

 

April 6

Tartan Day

Excuse to drink: Tartan Day is the celebration of Scottish Heritage, so eat some haggis and drink some scotch. That is unless you are a racist.

 

April 7

World Health Day

Excuse to drink: Science says one drink is good for me, so several much be better.

 

April 8

Astronomy Day

Excuse to drink: Have a stargazing party. Party = Booze remember.

Arp GalaxyBorrowed From Here

April 9

Winston Churchill Day

Excuse to drink: That is Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill to you! Drink because he said so!

 

April 10

National Sibling Day

Excuse to drink:Have a drink with your sibling and act stupid, just like old times.  

 

April 11

National Cheese Fondue Day

Excuse to drink: Whether you choose to pair your cheese with wine or beer you will not be disappointed you celebrated today.

 

April 12

Reach as High as You Can Day

Excuse to drink: You will look stupid doing this if you are sober

 

April 13

International Plant Appreciation Day

Excuse to drink: Hops are a plant, Drink!

April 14

Ex-Spouse Day

Excuse to drink: If you left ‘em, drink to that. If they left you, here is hoping they get Nuclear Clap.

 

April 15

Tax Day

Excuse to drink: The Government sucks, that’s why!

Tax SeasonBorrowed From Here

April 16

National Eggs Benedict Day

Excuse to drink: I’ll give you one guess. It starts with a B and rhymes with Lunch! B R U N C H!!!!

 

April 17

Blah! Blah! Blah ! Day

Excuse to drink: BLAH! BLAH! BLAH! DRINK!

 

April 18

Pet Owner’s Day

Excuse to drink: Pets are awesome!

 

April 19

Patriot’s Day

Excuse to drink: If you don’t drink today, you are a communist!

 

April 20

International Weed Day

Excuse to drink: You can’t smoke all day, take a break, and have a beer.

Hemp AleBorrowed From Here

April 21

Big Word Day

Excuse to drink: Listening to your friends try to pronounce and then define words like Anachronistic is going to be funny as hell after a few drinks.

 

April 22

Earth Day

Excuse to drink: Mother Nature is the shit!

 

April 23

International Nose Picking Day

Excuse to drink: If you are drunk, you can blame your disgusting habits on the booze.

 

April 24

Pigs-in-a-Blanket Day

Excuse to drink: Beer and tiny hotdogs are a match made in heaven.

 

April 25

Arbor Day

Excuse to drink: Hug a tree and drink a beer!

The Tree Of LifeBorrowed From Here

April 26

Hug a Friend Day

Excuse to drink: You are out with your friend you might as well stop by the bar and have at least one drink.

 

April 27

Mule Day

Excuse to drink: Drink something that kicks like a mule!

 

April 28

Take Our Daughters And Sons To Work Day

Excuse to drink: When you get home you are going to need a drink

 

April 29

World Tai Chi & Qigong Day

Excuse to drink: After a nice calm, relaxing Tai Chi session a nice stiff drink will taste awesome.

 

April 30

National Honesty Day

Excuse to drink: Nothing brings out sincere honesty like a few cocktails.

 

May 1

Couple Appreciation Day

Excuse to drink: Have a drink with your significant other in honor of your tremendous union.

 

May 2

National Baby’s day

Excuse to drink: Have one for the baby’s in your life because the man says you can’t put a little whiskey on their teeth anymore.

Success!Borrowed From Here

May 3

Sun Day (Day of the Sun)

Excuse to drink: DAYTIME DRINKING!!!

 

May 4

International Star Wars Day (May the Fourth Be With You)

Excuse to drink: Google Star Wars drinking games and then watch all six movies.

 

May 5

Cinco De Mayo

Excuse to drink: No explanation needed. This holiday was created to be on this list.

 

May 6

National Beverage Day

Excuse to drink: It would be disrespectful to not drink on Beverage Day!

 

May 7

National Tourism Day

Excuse to drink: Pretend you’re a tourist and drive into the city, do touristy things, and then finish the night off with a fancy dinner at Apple Bees complete with a few drinks.

 

May 8

National Teacher’s Day

Excuse to drink: I am sure you were the reason many of your teachers drank, so now you can return the favor and have one in their honor.

 

May 9

Tear the Tags Off the Mattress Day

Excuse to drink: You are going to need some liquid courage if you are about to violate federal laws.

DAMN THE MAN!Borrowed From Here

May 10

National Nightshift Workers Day

Excuse to drink: What shift do you think Bar Tenders work? DRINK UP AND TIP WELL!

 

May 11

Eat What You Want Day

Excuse to drink: This includes liquid bread.

 

May 12

Limerick Day (Edward Lear’s birthday)

Excuse to drink: Dirty limericks are hilarious when you are drunk.

 

May 13

Native American Day

Excuse to drink: Our ancestors were douchebags, the least we can do it raise a glass in their honor.

 

May 14

Crazy Day

Excuse to drink: Go ahead, Get Crazy… It is your duty!

 

May 15

Peace Officers Memorial Day

Excuse to drink: Even if you don’t like them you got to admit dying to protect others is pretty admirable.

Police Memorial Borrowed From Here

May 16

Wear Purple For Peace Day

Excuse to drink: To Peace!

 

May 17

World Telecommunications Day

Excuse to drink: If you are going to call your ex-girlfriend you might as well do it drunk.

 

May 18

No Dirty Dishes day

Excuse to drink: Only way to have no dirty dishes is if you go out to eat and while you are at it you might as well order a few drinks.

 

May 19

Armed Forces day

Excuse to drink: They suffer so you don’t have to! They fight so you can drink whenever you want to!

 

May 20

Flower Day

Excuse to drink: Flowers and a bottle of wine go a long way with the little lady.

 

May 21

National Waitresses/Waiters Day

Excuse to drink: Yet another excuse to go out to dinner and have some drinks, as always TIP WELL!

Mother Fucker

May 22

Buy-A-Musical-Instrument Day

Excuse to drink: If you are going to be a musician you gotta drink! All musicians drink.

 

May 23

National Pickle Day

Excuse to drink: Pickle Back Shot!

 

May 24

Scavenger Hunt Day

Excuse to drink: What is better than a drunken scavenger hunt? Nothing. The answer is nothing.

 

May 25

National Something day

Excuse to drink: Drinking is something right? Right?

 

May 26

Senior Health and Fitness Day

Excuse to drink: Raise a glass to the old folks in your life!

 

May 27

International Jazz Day

Excuse to drink: Listening to Jazz and drinking booze go together like a beer and a camp fire.

 

May 28

Morning Radio Day

Excuse to drink: I always need a drink when I am forced to listen to the Z-morning Zoo.

Morning RadioBorrowed From Here

May 29

Honor your Ancestors Day

Excuse to drink:   Make sure to spill just a little out for your descendants.

 

May 30

Hug your cat day

Excuse to drink: Alcohol is a great pain killer and Fluffy tears your skin up.

hug your cat day Borrowed From Here

May 31

National Meditation Day

Excuse to drink: While you are relaxed, why not relax some more.

 

June 1

American Zoo Day

Excuse to drink: Animals and Booze! Animals and Booze!

 

June 2

Leave the Office Early Day

Excuse to drink: Can you say Happy Hour!

 

June 3

National Trails Day

Excuse to drink: Hiking without beer is like Fishing without beer, boring and useless.

 

June 4

Socrates’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: He was one of the founders of Western philosophy, go find a bar and wax poetic about all things undebatable.

 

June 5

World Environment Day

Excuse to drink: Drink draught beer today because it is a renewable resource!

 

June 6

D-Day Anniversary

Excuse to drink: Cause Fuck The Nazis!

 

June 7

Freedom of the Press day

Excuse to drink: Extra! Extra! Read all about it! You should be drinking!

 

June 8

World Ocean Day

Excuse to drink: The Ocean is freaking amazing, and so is drinking.

Ocean DayBorrowed From Here

June 9

Best Friends Day

Excuse to drink: Drinking with your BFF is more fun than drinking alone.

 

June 10

Race Unity Day

Excuse to drink: Drink to diversity! Bonus points if your friend circle is a diverse as the cover photo of your local college’s website.

 

June 11

Abused Women and Children’s Awareness Day

Excuse to drink: To prove that not people who drink are abusive assholes.

 

June 12

Magic Day

Excuse to drink: Now you see my drink, now you don’t! We all like magic why not celebrate it.

June 13

Weed Your Garden Day

Excuse to drink: Because you earned it, toiling in the garden all day.

 

June 14

Flag Day

Excuse to drink: ‘MERICA!

Craft Beer Flag Borrowed From Here

June 15

National Photography Day

Excuse to drink: Drunk selfies are so much more fun!

 

June 16

No Orange Clothes Day

Excuse to drink: Today is a built in drinking game, if you spot anyone wearing orange, DRINK!

 

June 17

Eat Your Vegetables Day

Excuse to drink: Hint: Drink garnishes count.

 

June 18

National Splurge Day

Excuse to drink: Go ahead, splurge away!

 

June 19

World Sauntering Day

Excuse to drink: Drinking adds a swagger than simply can’t be matched.

 

June 20

Bald Eagle Day

Excuse to drink: The Eagle is majestic as fuck and it represents our country.

 

June 21

Summer Solstice

Excuse to drink: I hope you saved your Christmas Tree.   Light a fire, and burn that son of a bitch. While you are at it have a drink.

Christmas Tree FireBorrowed From Here

June 22

Stupid Guy Thing Day

Excuse to drink: Celebrate all the dumb shit guys do, including drinking!

 

June 23

Let It Go Day

Excuse to drink: The easiest way to forget about your problems is to drink them away.

 

June 24

Great American Picnic Day

Excuse to drink: Picnics are better with booze!

 

June 25

LEON Day

Excuse to drink: Six Months Until Christmas.

 

June 26

International Day in Support of Victims of Torture

Excuse to drink: Drink, because not drinking is torture.

 

June 27

Helen Keller’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: Drink until you’re deaf and blind.

 

June 28

World War 1 Commemoration

Excuse to drink: Drink to the soldiers that kept this world safe when wars had meaning and politicians have souls.

 

June 29

National Duck Day

Excuse to drink: The only day when Duck Face Selfies are not only justified but mandatory.

Epic DuckfaceBorrowed From Here

June 30

Meteor Day

Excuse to drink: Space is freaking awesome!

 

July 1

Canada Day

Excuse to drink: To Canada you Hosier!

 

July 2

I Forgot Day

Excuse to drink: Drink the day away!

 

July 3

PacMan Game Day

Excuse to drink: Sound like the perfect day for vintage video games and shitty beer.

 

July 4

Independence Day

Excuse to drink: ‘Merica!

Fireworks and BeerBorrowed From Here

July 5

Workaholics Day

Excuse to drink: To all of us that burn the candle at both ends.

 

July 6

National Fried Chicken Day

Excuse to drink: This day screams for some bourbon.

 

July 7

Father-Daughter Take a Walk Together Day

Excuse to drink: Depending on the age of your daughter, you will either need the flask because of what she tells you, or you can share it with her.

 

July 8

Be a Kid Again Day

Excuse to drink: Sneak out of the house through a window, meet up with your friends in the park and get shitty on some MD 20/20 and Jose Cuervo.

 

July 9

Air Conditioning Appreciation Day

Excuse to drink: Sit back, kick up your feet, and relax with a frozen daiquiri in your hand as the greatest invention of the 20th Century cools you down.

 

July 10

Don’t Step on a Bee Day

Excuse to drink: It is a rarity to find a bee in a bar.

 

July 11

Cheer up the Lonely Day

Excuse to drink: By buying them a shot!

Lonley DogBorrowed From Here

July 12

Swimming Pool Day

Excuse to drink: Summer is all about sitting in a pool with drink in hand.

 

July 13

Embrace Your Geekiness Day

Excuse to drink: Drink until your nerd comes out!

 

July 14

Pick Blueberries Day

Excuse to drink: Celebrate how many Blueberries you picked!

 

July 15

Be a Dork Day

Excuse to drink: Dorks need to drink too!

The Big Bang Theory Borrowed From Here

July 16

International Juggling Day

Excuse to drink: Go find a renaissance faire and take a shot with a juggler. If you can’t find a renaissance faire I guess a Juggalo will have to do. Yea that was an ICP reference!

 

July 17

POW-MIA Recognition Day

Excuse to drink: Honor those that have given everything to protect our freedom.

 

July 18

Cow Appreciation Day

Excuse to drink: You eat them all the damn time, the least you can do is take a shot to celebrate how awesome they taste.

 

July 19

Stick Out Your Tongue Day

Excuse to drink: Those selfies are going to be priceless!

 

July 20

Nap Day

Excuse to drink: You are a grown ass man/woman and you got to take a nap! High five yourself for being awesome, and then drink up because you obviously don’t have any responsibilities.

 

July 21

National Tug-Of-War Tournament Day

Excuse to drink: Grab your friends, a rope, and a keg! Tonight is going to be a muscle ripping, rope burn, getting frat boy drunk kind of night.

 

July 22

Summer Leisure Day

Excuse to drink: It is Summer Leisure Day, that means your ass better be in a tube on a lazy river with a beer in both hands.

 Two Cute Kittens In A HammockBorrowed From Here

July 23

Gorgeous Grandma Day

Excuse to drink: Drink every time you see a GILF!

 

July 24

Amelia Earhart Day

Excuse to drink: Drink a few airplane bottles in solidarity with this record setting Aviation Diva.

 

July 25

Candles on a Cake Day

Excuse to drink: It is always somebody’s birthday and if there are candles on a cake I am drinking!

 

July 26

All or Nothing Day

Excuse to drink: Go big or Go home!

 

July 27

National Korean War Veterans Armistice Day

Excuse to drink: Throw a few back for the old timers that are still around the fought in the Korean War because most of them can’t drink now because their doctor says so!

 

July 28

Accountants Day

Excuse to drink: Love ‘em or Hate ‘em, without them we would all have no idea where the hell our money goes. To the Bean Counters!

 

July 29

To the Moon Day (NASA founded in 1958)

Excuse to drink: Toast the dreamers that sent a few humans to the moon with less computing power that we all now carry in our pockets. Gotta love those crazy bastards!

A True Moon WalkJuly 30

Comedy Day (Make Someone Laugh)

Excuse to drink: Everyone laughs harder when they are drunk.

 

July 31

Harry Potter’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: Watch the movies and google a drinking game that coincides. There are so many to choose from.

 

August 1

Sports Day

Excuse to drink: Grab a few friends, a ball of any kind, and a case of good beer today a day for playing some sports.

 

August 2

Dinosaurs Day

Excuse to drink: Bring a flask to a museum, I promise you, you won’t be disappointed.

 

August 3

National Watermelon Day

Excuse to drink: Have you ever filled a watermelon with vodka and then ate it. What are you waiting for, you need a watermelon and vodka STAT!

 

August 4th

Taxpayer Appreciation Day

Excuse to drink: Celebrate yourself if you are legit, but if you live on the other side of the law, take a drink in honor of those fools that pay Uncle Sam. I would drink something strong though because when you get caught you will have to drink toilet hooch and that shit is rough.

 

August 5

International Beer Day

Excuse to drink: Ummmmmmmm. Yea!

Beer IllustrationBorrowed From Here

August 6

National Fresh Breath Day

Excuse to drink: We all love fresh breath!

 

August 7

Purple Heart Day

Excuse to drink: Even if you don’t agree with the cause, you have to admit the recipients of this medal deserve your tribute.

 

August 8

Kat Day

Excuse to drink: Chicks named Kat are remarkable people and if you know one you should be drinking with them today!

 

August 9

National Hand holding Day

Excuse to drink: You should drink because you have someone to hold hands with.

 

August 10

Gals Night Out

Excuse to drink: Ladies tonight is the night to get your drink on with your bitches, Men the more they drink the better you look.

 

August 11

Kool-Aid Day

Excuse to drink: Ohhhhhh YEA! Vodka and Kool-Aid rules!

Oh Yea

August 12

Baseball Fans Day

Excuse to drink: Buy a ticket to the ball park and get your tailgate going!

 

August 13

International Left Handers Day

Excuse to drink: Drink with all your left handed friends today.

 

August 14

Wiffle Ball Day

Excuse to drink: Grab a Wiffle Ball, a plastic yellow bat, a chair, and a case of beer.   PLAY BALL!

 

August 15

National Failures Day

Excuse to drink: Drink until your failures are funny.

 

August 16

National Golf Day

Excuse to drink: 18 holes+24 beers= one great day!

 

August 17

National Thrift shop Day

Excuse to drink: Shop until you drop, then celebrate the awesome sauce that you found that someone else threw away 40 years ago.

 

August 18

National Homeless Animals Day

Excuse to drink: Adopt a dog and then raise a glass to its forever home!

Lilly BirdAugust 19

Potato Day

Excuse to drink: Vodka anyone!

 

August 20

Stay-at-Home with Your Kids Day

Excuse to drink: You are going to need a drink after today.

 

August 21

Poets Day

Excuse to drink: Celebrate your favorite wordsmith one sip at a time.

 

August 22

National Punctuation Day

Excuse to drink: A.K.A. Grammar Nazi day! You will need a drink to soothe your throat, if you are the one correcting people all day, for the rest of us that throw commas around like a drunken chimp playing darts, we will need a drink to calm the urge to punch these Syntax Soldiers in their face.

 

August 23

Hug Your Sweetheart Day

Excuse to drink: A hug is good, but a bottle of wine and a fancy dinner is better.

HugglesBorrowed From Here

August 24

Strange Music Day

Excuse to drink: Hijack the Juke Box at your local bar by slipping a $20.00 in and play songs like this.

 

August 25

Kiss and Make-up Day

Excuse to drink: You just made up with your significant other.

 

August 26

Woman’s Equality Day

Excuse to drink: Go shot for shot with your lady friends.

 

August 27

Just Because Day

Excuse to drink: Drink just because.

 

August 28

Dream Day

Excuse to drink: Discuss your dreams while getting crunk!

 

August 29

More Herbs Less Salt day (Eat Healthy Day!)

Excuse to drink: Order a drink with an herbaceous garnish.

 

August 30

National Toasted Marshmallow Day

Excuse to drink: You must drink when sitting around a camp fire, it is simply the rules.

 

August 31

Eat outside day

Excuse to drink: Grab a picnic basket and some booze to celebrate the great summer you just had!

PIG!Borrowed From Here

September 1

American Chess Day

Excuse to drink: If you think Chess is a great game, try CHESS the Drinking GAME!

 

September 2

Pierce-Your-Ears Day

Excuse to drink: Celebrate your mid-life crisis by tying one on.

 

September 3

Skyscraper Day

Excuse to drink: Pick your favorite building and go visit it! While you are in the city you might as well have a drink.

 

September 4

Eat an Extra Dessert Day

Excuse to drink: Booze is a dessert right?

 

September 5

Waffle House Day (Debuted in 1955)

Excuse to drink: Every Waffle House restaurant is open 24 hours a day and 365 days a year, so hit up a bar and have a midnight snack at a Good ‘Ol Waffle House.

Waffle HouseBorrowed From Here

September 6

Do It! Day (aka Fight Procrastination)

Excuse to drink: DRINK!

 

September 7

Google Commemoration Day

Excuse to drink: If it wasn’t for google we would still be using map quest, arguing all night at bars, and have @aol.com at the end of our email addresses. To Google!

 

September 8

International Literacy Day

Excuse to drink: Read a book while drinking some scotch Mr. or Ms. Fancypants.

 

September 9

Wonderful Weirdos Day

Excuse to drink: Fly your weird flag all over your local tavern.

 

September 10

National Boss / Employee Exchange Day

Excuse to drink: Happy Hour! Exchange beers with your boss.

 

September 11

9/11 Observances & Remembrances

Excuse to drink: Never Forget!

 

September 12

National Policewoman Day

Excuse to drink: If you can drink with them, if you can’t drink for them, just never… never… ever… hit on ‘em.

 

September 13

Barbershop Day

Excuse to drink: Get a haircut you hippie and then go out and show off your new do.

 

September 14

National Pet Memorial Day

Excuse to drink: Raise a glass to all the pets in your life that are no longer with us.

Dogs Last WillBorrowed From Here

September 15

National Thank-You Day

Excuse to drink: Say thank you with a few a drinks.

 

September 16

Wife Appreciation Day

Excuse to drink: Happy wife, Happy life, and my wife likes to drink.

 

September 17

National Constitution Day

Excuse to drink: Drink-up because the constitution says we can.

 

September 18

National Play-Doh Day

Excuse to drink: Drink because you made that awesome Play-Doh sculpture. You rock dude.

 

September 19

Talk Like a Pirate Day

Excuse to drink: And drink like one too.

              September 20

National Punch Day

Excuse to drink: Punch as in that giant bowl of liquid that your 17 year old self spiked in order to get to second base with Mary Jane Such and Such. Now is the time to spike that punch once again.

 

September 21

Miniature Golf Day

Excuse to drink: A few friends, a flask, and a mini-golf course, sounds heavenly doesn’t it.

 

September 22

Hobbit Day

Excuse to drink: Find some Barliman’s Best or your favorite beer and have a hobbit themed party complete with Middle Earth inspired food.

Frodo Drinking September 23

Checkers Day

Excuse to drink: If we are going to celebrate Chess we should probably celebrate its dumber cousin. At least it is easier to play when you are in the bag.

 

September 24

Eat Dinner with your family day

Excuse to drink: You are probably going to need to drink before, during, and after.

 

September 25

National Comic Book Day

Excuse to drink: Everyone loves comic books even if they don’t admit it.

 

September 26

National Food Service Employees Day

Excuse to drink: Here’s to everyone that brings and cooks you food when you don’t want to do it yourself.

 

September 27

Crush a Can Day

Excuse to drink: Gotta drink what is inside before you crush.

 

September 28

Ask a stupid question day

Excuse to drink: Do you want another drink? See what I did there.  

 

September 29

Happy Goose Day

Excuse to drink: Did you know that Geese will never let another goose die alone? How about that Geese mate for life and mourn the loss of their loved one when they die. Geese are pretty freaking cool, as long as they are not pooping on you! Here’s to geese!

 

September 30

Pumpkin Day

Excuse to drink: Pumpkin beer it is!

 

October 1

World Vegetarian Day

Excuse to drink: Booze goes great with Veggies too!

 

October 2

Charlie Brown & Snoopy’s Birthday

Excuse to drink: Celebrate everyone’s favorite Block head and his sarcastic puppy too.

Great PumpkinBorrowed From Here

October 3

Techies Day

Excuse to drink: Drink to all the nerds in your life, for without them who would you call when your computer gets the internet clap!

 

October 4

Ten-Four Day

Excuse to drink: If you are going to speak like a trucker or a cop you might as well drink like one.

 

October 5

Smile Day

Excuse to drink: It is hard not to smile with a drink in your hand.

 

October 6

Clergy Appreciation Day

Excuse to drink: Even if you are not religious it is pretty amazing that these men and women give up their lives in the name of service to their community.

 

October 7

National Frappe Day

Excuse to drink: Because you just drank a crap load of coffee and ain’t going to bed anytime soon.

 

October 8

Thanksgiving Day in Canada

Excuse to drink: If the Canadians are celebrating something so should you. Don’t let those floppy heads have all the fun.

 

October 9

Leif Erikson Day

Excuse to drink: That dude was a Viking and if there is one thing that Vikings liked to do more than pillaging and plundering it was drinking! Grab yourself a horn mug and drink up.

Viking FuneralBorrowed From Here

October 10

World Mental Health Day

Excuse to drink: The first step towards defeating your problem is to acknowledge its existence. The second step is to drink it away, unless of cause that problem is alcoholism, then I suggest a different route.

 

October 11

Coming Out Day

Excuse to drink: To understand the difficulty of being in the closet, one must try to comprehend fighting ever urge to be one’s self in front of everyone they love in fear that the truth will destroy the affection the hold so dear. Raise your glass to honor all of those who were brave enough to already take this step, take a shot for everyone that is still struggling with this monumental decision, and pour a little out for every misguided soul that thinks it is their business who someone else loves.

 

October 12

Moment of Frustration Scream- Day (scream 30 seconds)

Excuse to drink: …and have a drink afterwards.

 

October 13

It’s Train Your Brain Day

Excuse to drink: Beer is like a protein shake for your brain! Work it out and then drink it off.

 

October 14

Bald is Beautiful Day

Excuse to drink: Drink in honor of all the folically challenged people in your life.

 

October 15

National Poetry Day

Excuse to drink: Write a poem for your loved one, share a bottle of wine, and hopefully a bed.

 

October 16

World Food Day

Excuse to drink: You need something to drink with all the awesome food you are about to eat.

 

October 17

National Pasta Day

Excuse to drink: Pasta is freaking awesome!

Garlic Pasta and Kale Borrowed From Here

October 18

Alaska Day

Excuse to drink: Because all Alaskans do too.

 

October 19

Evaluate Your Life Day

Excuse to drink: You are going to need a few drinks after having this conversation with yourself.

 

October 20

National Brandied Fruit Day

Excuse to drink: Technically, I guess this should read excuse to eat your booze.

 

October 21

National Pumpkin Cheesecake Day

Excuse to drink: Nothing goes better with Pumpkin Cheesecake like a nice tall mug of Pumpkin Beer.

 

October 22

Make A Difference Day

Excuse to drink: Go out, do something awesome for someone and then drink to yourself you amazing son of a bitch.

 

October 23

TV Talk-Show Host Day

Excuse to drink: You going to have to be drunk to watch that rubbish.

 

October 24

Sour Day

Excuse to drink: Sour beers are making a comeback and I think this is the perfect day for you to jump on this bandwagon.

 

October 25

National Greasy Foods Day

Excuse to drink: If a PBR and a filthy cheese burger doesn’t sound f-ing amazeballs to you, you are reading the wrong blog.

White Manna BurgersBorrowed From Here

October 26

Mule Day

Excuse to drink: Dude, Science made Mules and that is awesome! A male donkey gets it on with a female horse and boom MULE! That would be like a human and chimp doing the horizontal naked time dance and creating a Humanzee! Oh holy crap I want a Humanzee right now!

 

October 27

Cranky Co-workers Day

Excuse to drink: A liquid lunch is just what those cantankerous bastards need to turn their frown upside down

 

October 28

Internet Day

Excuse to drink: Seriously, it is the internet! Pick one of the about 180,000,000 results that Google will find in about 0.36 seconds when you search drinking games and rock out.

 

October 29

National Oatmeal Day

Excuse to drink: I know what you are thinking, come on man we need a reason to drink booze not Ensure. Relax, I got your back… Think Oatmeal Stout!

 

October 30

Devil’s Night / Mischief Night/Cabbage Night

Excuse to drink: Someone has to protect the homestead from that little, pre-pubescent, egg toting doucheknuckles. What you will need is a bunch of booze, a really bright light, a gawking chair and a camera. Every time, one of those punks walks past and thinks about ruining your paint job just remind them that jury’s love to watch a good movie starring the criminal.

Mischief NightBorrowed From Here

October 31

Halloween

Excuse to drink: Booze is just treats for adults. Trick or treat, smell my feet; give me something good To drink. If you don’t, I don’t Care, I will pull down my underwear… And leave an upper deck in your toilet seat you cheap fuck.

 

November 1

Day of the Dead

Excuse to drink: Gather your family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died.

 

November 2

Name your Car Day

Excuse to drink: Celebrate your noble steed.

 

November 3

Sandwich Day

Excuse to drink: Possibly the best food canvas in the culinary world, we have eaten them since practically birth, from the first peanut butter and jelly, our lovely moms cut the crust off of to the wild boar bacon, foie gras, and brie Panini that now tickles our fancy.

Primanti Bros.

November 4

National Skeptic’s Day

Excuse to drink: If you don’t your friends may become skeptical of your life decisions.

 

November 5

Guy Fawkes Night (bonfire night, fireworks night)

Excuse to drink: Fireworks and drinking are better than most things in this world. Be mindful though drinking and hospitals suck! Be careful and don’t say I did not warn you.

 

November 6

I love Nachos Day

Excuse to drink: NACHOS!!!

Nacho Helmet Borrowed From Here

November 7

Hug a Bear Day

Excuse to drink: After you are done hugging a bear you are going to need a hospital and some heavy duty liquor.

 

November 8

Try a New Recipe Day

Excuse to drink: Download a bartending App and make yourself a cocktail that you have never tried before.

 

November 9

National Scrapple Day

Excuse to drink: Some of you may have to drink a few before you gain enough courage to give scrapple a try. I on the other hand love this breakfast food produced by food gluing the parts of the pig that hot dog companies won’t even use. Mmmmmmm… Food Glue.

 

November 10

Lung Cancer Awareness Day

Excuse to drink: ‘Cause fuck cancer in its stupid face!

 

November 11

Veterans Day

Excuse to drink: Drink to the soldiers not to the politics.

Navy Veteran

November 12

National Pizza with the Works Day

Excuse to drink: Because Pizza!

 

November 13

World Kindness Day

Excuse to drink: Buy a shot for a stranger and explain why you did it. This will hopefully start a shot chain that will work its way around the bar.

 

November 14

National Guacamole Day

Excuse to drink: I don’t always drink Dos Equis, but I do on National Guacamole Day.

 

November 15

I Love to Write Day

Excuse to drink: Sit down with a blank piece of paper, a pen, and a scotch. See what comes out.

 

November 16

International Day for Tolerance

Excuse to drink: Because it will increase your alcohol tolerance.

 

November 17

Take A Hike Day

Excuse to drink: The days are getting shorter and the nights are getting longer. Grab your wife, your dog, and your flask before hitting the trails.

Lilly Hiking November 18

William Tell Day

Excuse to drink: Take a shot of Apple flavored booze off someone’s head. It may sound silly but it is a hell of a lot safer than shooting an apple off your son’s head with an arrow.

 

November 19

Carbonated Beverage with Caffeine Day

Excuse to drink: Rum and Coke anyone!

 

November 20

Universal Children’s Day

Excuse to drink: Celebrate the wonderful children in your life and drink away the headache they give you.

 

November 21

World Television Day

Excuse to drink: Without Television how would you know what brand of booze you should be drinking.

 

November 22

Stop the Violence Day

Excuse to drink: Celebrate this global movement to end violence against women and girls.

STOP ViolenceBorrowed From Here

 

November 23

Buy Nothing Day

Excuse to drink: Stay home and drink!

 

November 24

National Espresso Day

Excuse to drink: Espresso and Baileys taste fantastic together.

 

November 25

National Parfait Day

Excuse to drink: Eat healthy in the morning so you can drink heavy in the evening.

 

November 26

Cake Day

Excuse to drink: When there is cake it is always a celebration!

 

November 27

National Day of Listening

Excuse to drink: Listening is always easier when your mouth is full.

 

November 28

Red Planet Day

Excuse to drink: Raise your glass towards the sky and drink one from our neighbor, Mars.

MarsBorrowed From Here

November 29

Throw out the leftovers day

Excuse to drink:   It is sad to see good food go to waste, make sure the leftover wine and beer does not meet the same fate. Drink up!

 

November 30

Computer Security Day

Excuse to drink: Before you being to make all of your online purchases for the upcoming holidays, crack open a bottle of something and take today to update all your virus protection and malware programs.

 

December 1

World AIDS Day

Excuse to drink: Drink in remembrance for all of those who have died by the dreaded hands of this disease.

 

December 2

Science Fiction Day

Excuse to drink: Science is awesome, but Science Fiction is that much better.

Storm Trooper Twerking December 3

Make a Gift Day

Excuse to drink: Put your bartending hat on a make someone you like a drink. While you are at it, make another one for yourself.

 

December 4

Cookie Day

Excuse to drink:   Cookies and Beer, cookies and beer, everybody loves cookies and beer.

 

December 5

National Commute With Your Baby Day

Excuse to drink: Because you were on the damn train with 100 moronic fledging parents that thought this holiday was a good idea.

 

December 6

Saint Nicholas Day

Excuse to drink: Celebrate Christmas early by rejoicing in the name of Good Ol’ St. Nick. Yea, that’s right St. Nick, like Santa Claus and shit.

December 7

Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day

Excuse to drink: In memory of this tragic day.

 

December 8

Brownie Day

Excuse to drink: Brownies are denser than cake yet softer than cookies, they are really the best dessert out there.

Bacon Brownie Borrowed From Here

December 9

Christmas Card Day

Excuse to drink: Sit home crack a bottle of wine with the significant other and put stamps and addresses on 100 envelopes.

 

December 10

National Lager Day

Excuse to drink: Lager is a beer, this day is for beer!

 

December 11

International Mountain Day

Excuse to drink: Go climb a mountain, if you can’t climb a rock, and if you can’t do that walk up hill, then go to the bar and celebrate Mountain Day.

 

December 12

Gingerbread House Day

Excuse to drink: Nothing goes better with building a Gingerbread house than a glass of spiked nog.

 

December 13

National Cocoa Day

Excuse to drink: Make some Hot Cocoa for you and your Beau and sit next to the fire. The Cocoa should of course have whiskey in it.

 

December 14

Monkey Day

Excuse to drink: Whether you are celebrating The Monkeys of the furry primate variety or the Band, they are both really freaking cool and should be honored.

Monkey HugsBorrowed From Here

December 15

Bill of Rights Day

Excuse to drink: Drink because it is your right!

 

December 16

National Chocolate Covered Anything Day

Excuse to drink: Because come on, who does not love anything covered in chocolate.

 

December 17

Saturnalia

Excuse to drink: This is a roman holiday and if any culture knew a thing or two about Hedonism it sure was the Romans! It is basically Roman Era Christmas.

 

December 18

Wear A Plunger On Your Head Day

Excuse to drink: You will probably need a few drinks under your belt for this one.

golden retriever wearing a plunger on her headBorrowed From Here

December 19

Oatmeal Muffin Day

Excuse to drink: What a crappy holiday! Drink!

 

December 20

Go Caroling Day

Excuse to drink: Here we come a-wassailing, among the leaves so green. Here we come a-wand’ring, so drunk to be seen.

 

December 21

Winter Solstice

Excuse to drink: It is the shortest day of the year, that means you can drink well into the night.

 

December 22

National Date-Nut Bread Day

Excuse to Drink: Wash down some nut bread with some nice stiff nog.

 

December 23

Festivus

Excuse to drink: It is a Festivus for the Rest of us.

Festivus For The Rest Of UsBorrowed From Here

December 24

Christmas Eve

Excuse to drink: Santa is COMING!

 

December 25

Christmas

Excuse to drink: SANTA IS HERE!!!

 

December 26

Boxing Day

Excuse to drink: It’s like Christmas only British and Weird.

 

December 27

Holocaust Remembrance Day

Excuse to drink: To forget history is to invite a tragic reoccurrence.

 

December 28

Card Playing Day

Excuse to drink: Might I suggest a rousing game of Cards Against Humanity and a few pints at your favorite watering hole.

Cards Against HumanityBorrowed From Here

December 29

No Interruptions Day

Excuse to drink: Do not interrupt my drinking!

 

December 30

Relaxation Day

Excuse to drink: Relax with a drink or two and get ready for New Year’s Eve!

 

December 31

New Year’s Eve

Excuse to drink: IT IS A CELEBRATION BITCHES!

NYE NYCBorrowed From Here

 

 

 

 

The Blue Collar Foodie Visits Tierney’s CopperHouse in Fairfield, NJ

One of my favorite aspects of being a food blogger, or Gastronomer, is the fact that I get to chat about food all the time.  Food is something that I can talk about for hours on end and never get tired of telling tales of the perfect steak I once had in Nebraska, the greatest hot dog I ever ate in Chicago, or the time I ate nothing but meat at a Brazilian Barbecue spot in Newark for three hours straight.  These conversations usually lead to an enjoyable night of drinking and reminiscing, but they sometimes result in a wonderful payoff for this aspiring epicurean author.  In the midst of participating in these hedonistic, often embellished, tit for tat dialogues, if I am lucky one of the contributors might bring up a new restaurant that is not on my foodie radar.  When this happens, I can’t help but get excited because I have been doing this for quite some time now and finding eateries that inspire me is about as easy as combing the desert, for a princess, with an afro pick.

SpaceballsTrooper

Combing The Desert

This wonderful happenstance occurred the other night while I was out at a bar with friends.  Due to the fact that much like beautiful women and rich men, foodies tend to hang out with other foodies, our conversation soon turned to edibles, and we were immersed in a round of culinary “fish stories.”  During this sybaritic discussion, a friend of mine began talking about a Dry Aged 48 Oz Porterhouse they had heard wonderful things about that is served at a restaurant in Fairfield, NJ by the name of Tierney’s CopperHouse located at 4 Little Falls Rd. After hearing my fellow foodie friend describe this colossal slab of meat with adjectives that I have only seen on bathroom stalls of bars of ill repute, there was absolutely no way I was not going to pay the CopperHouse a visit.

Tierney's Copper House

Tierney’s Copper House

Considering, the Googles is the Watson to my Sherlock, I consulted it immediately.  While my 3G did my research for me, I found that the reason that Tierney’s CopperHouse was not on my radar was not because my radar lost its bleeps, sweeps, and creeps, but rather because Tierney’s CopperHouse just opened in April.  With that in mind, the fact that their fare was already being strewn about in epicurean blitzkriegs, like gourmet grenades, said something about this fledgling eatery.

As we approached the building, the first thing I noticed was that this was not a small establishment.  The expansive modern exterior looked quite alluring, even in the misty rain that decided to fall on us as we got out of our vehicle.  As we entered the restaurant, we were greeted at the door and escorted through the bar area, complete with a warm inviting brick fire place, into the gorgeous dining room.  Once seated, we were given our menus and we ordered our first round of drinks.  I was very pleased to see that Tierney’s CopperHouse offers a large selection of craft beers featuring some Cricket Hill selections, which are born and raised right in Fairfield, NJ.  This fact alone is worth getting off your couch and making your way to the Copperhouse, considering that Cricket Hill creates some of the finest beers in New Jersey, if not the country, and I am always overjoyed about the chance to drink a fresh draught out of a frosty mug. One great thing about fine dining in New Jersey, and just from the looks of this place I had a feeling I would be dining quite fine, is that the prices of beverages always seem to be much more reasonable than those over the river, and I don’t mean at Grandma’s house.

Warm Inviting Fire Place

Warm Inviting Fire Place

With our drink orders in, it was time we got down to the nitty-gritty, the most daunting task of any meal, ordering the main course.  I attempted to sway my partners in crime to assist me in devouring the TC Family Bedrock Steak, which weighs in at a formidable 64 Oz of meaty goodness, only because it would have been the largest steak I have ever ordered in my foodie career.  Alas, I was only able to convince one of my fellow patrons to join me on a gluttonous meaty adventure and therefore, we decided upon the aforementioned Dry Aged Porterhouse for two, which was accompanied with two sides of our choice, the grilled asparagus and Spinach Mushroom Quinoa, and rang up at $79.00.  Our better halves, that apparently did not want to eat damn near half a cow, opted for dishes that were slightly less excessive but sounded equally as appetizing, electing to order the Free Range Chicken described as an Amish free range half chicken paired with potatoes and asparagus for $19.00 and the TC Chicken Pot Pie described as free range chicken, carrots, Yukon gold potato, peas, corn, pearl onions, with puff pastry for a modest $14.00.

Tierney's Copperhouse Menu

Fancy!

The anticipation of this Fred Flintstone sized steak, which was in my mind carved from the flank of a Brachiosaurus, was causing me to salivate like a Pavlovian test subject.  Each time the kitchen door swung open, I was distracted from our polite diner conversation, in hopes that the server that exited was carrying our savory feast.  Sooner rather than later, my hopes were realized and our table was adorned by a plate that was only matched by the beauty of my wonderful wife. (10 points for me!)  Not to say that the other food that was delivered to our table did not look eye-catching, but I mean, come on people, this was a 48 Oz. Steak I was staring at; it is like comparing other girls to Marilyn Monroe, it is just not fair, not fair at all.  I could barely contain myself through the picture taking phase and almost said the hell with it, and dug in, but I was a virtuous little food blogger, and waited until all the photos were snapped before digging into the pre-cut slices of pure happiness that graced my plate.

48 Oz. Porterhouse Steak

48 Oz. Porterhouse Steak

If the price that I mentioned above frightened you away from ordering this behemoth steak, I want you to know that this steak damn near forced me to reevaluate my frugal tendencies.  Every bite I took was packed with flavor and only made me want to have another delectable morsel.  For those that are not math majors, I alone, ate 24 Oz. of this meatastic meal, and I think I could have eaten 24oz more.  Combined with the side dishes this meal was well worth the price tag and was a feast fit for a king.

The perfect porterhouse bite

The perfect Porterhouse Bite

Even though, it was hard for me to stop partaking in this succulent beef barrage, I had to force myself away to try the other dishes that were ordered.  I was lucky enough to be dining with people that support my gastro gallivanting and they had no qualms about me eating a small portion of their meals to uphold the integrity of my writing.

TC Chicken Pot Pie

TC’s Chicken Pot Pie

I tasted the TC Chicken Pot Pie first and it was delightful.   In my opinion, Chicken Pot Pie is an extremely tough dish to make because it must be perfectly seasoned and have the proper texture in order to really be a respectable dish when surrounded by other high end meals.  Executive Chef Jeff J. Orel has found that balance between comfortable and innovative, which is quite difficult mind you, and served us an amazing Pot Pie.

Tierney's Free Range Chicken

Tierney’s Free Range Chicken

Next up was the Free Range Chicken that was served in its natural au jus.  This dish was not dry, yet still had a crispy flavorful skin.  I have a hard time accomplishing this task cooking one chicken for two people, so the fact that the Chef was able to pull this off while cooking 20 other meals and balancing a whole kitchen staff is a complement to his skill and professionalism.

TC's Cheesecake

TC’s Cheesecake

It may have been the alcohol talking or I could have been a bit meat drunk, but even though I had just eaten two days’ worth of calories in one sitting, I had a hankering for desert.  My tablemates agreed that a nice sweet ending to our dinner would be appreciated, and we decided to share two plates between the four of us.  The dessert we decided upon was a slice of cheesecake that literally melted in our mouths and a chocolate Ganache cake that was so decadent that sugar itself is jealous of it.

Chocolate Ganache Cake

Chocolate Ganache Cake

Tierney’s CopperHouse is a must visit eatery for any foodie in the area that is looking for a cold craft beer paired with a phenomenal meal in a faultless setting.  For those of you that were scared off by the prices of these meals, if you check the menu out on the CopperHouses’ website I assure you, you can find something that is in your price range that will be just as amazing.  There are some restaurants that I eat at that are forgettable, this is not one of those places, after one meal at Tierney’s, I could sense that they are passionate about food, and I will be returning again and again, although next time I plan on conquering the 64 Oz. Bedrock, whether my companions consent or not!

Tierney’s CopperHouse

Address:
4 Little Falls Road, Fairfield, NJ 07004

Hours:

Mon. – Fri. 12:00PM – 12:00AM
Sat. 4:00PM – 12:00AM
Sun. 4:00PM – 10:00PM

Tierney's Copperhouse on Urbanspoon

The Blue Collar Foodie Keeps It Classy At The WineMaker’s Cellar

For the most part, my definition of refined is drinking a craft beer with my pants on. In other words, for me, sitting at a gastro pub imbibing a beverage with my pinky out and discussing the finer points of Fantasy Baseball, without cursing every third word, is generally, as classy as I want to be. Now everyone knows that every rule has to have at least one exception in order to prove said rule, right. So, every now and again, I don a shirt with at least 2 buttons, slacks instead of jeans, and even take off my baseball hat to enter the wonderful world of wine.   Although quite foreign to me at first, I have become somewhat of a novice scholar of wine, and it is all thanks to wine tastings and food pairings like the one I attended at The WineMakers Cellar, located at 1050 Goffle Road, in Hawthorne, NJ recently due to a Living Social Coupon that I stumbled upon.

Welcome To The WineMaker's Cellar

Welcome To The WineMaker’s Cellar

The first thing to note about the WineMakers Cellar is that they are not a restaurant, nor are they a liquor store; they are actually a full-fledged wine making facility. With that said, they offer something that other vineyards, wineries, restaurants, and liquor stores simply cannot, the option to create your own wine from scratch. This process involves crushing the grapes, pressing the grapes, racking the wine and of course everyone’s favorite, bottling, and the knowledgeable professionals at The WineMakers Cellar will walk you through each process, imparting some of their wisdom to you along the way.

The event that my wife and I attended was described as an evening of educational entertainment that will help the attendees diversify their palates in a relaxed and comfortable environment, whilst learning about wine and the wine making process.   With a description such as this, I probably would have been more than slightly interested, but then the gracious hosts at The WineMakers Cellar also included two glasses of wine per person, live music, gourmet cheeses, crackers, hot hors d’ oeuvres, a dinner catered from Justin’s Ristorante in Hawthorne, NJ, and two bottles of complimentary wine to take home at the end of the evening.   Considering everything that this deal encompassed, Zoe and I could not say no, and we bought our tickets immediately, unfortunately so did half of Bergen County so it took quite some time to acquire a table to one of these exclusive events.

Not knowing what to expect on our first adventure to the WineMakers Cellar, Kat and I drove to Goffle Road in Hawthorne, NJ. Since this establishment is on my way to work, and I pass the sign every day, I knew that the actual site of the WineMakers Cellar is somewhat clandestine, so if you plan on attending one of these events keep your eyes open as soon as you exit the highway for the small sign that will point you in the right direction. After turning into the parking lot, driving down a slightly narrow one lane, yet two-way road, we found ourselves in the parking lot of an industrial park which is the home of The Winemakers Cellar. To be honest, Kat and I caught the nervous giggles for a second or two as we arrived. But, we have learned to not judge a book by its cover more times than I would like to admit, so we did not let this establishment’s shabby exterior taint our evening’s promise.

While we slowly walked to the front door of the facility, we noticed a quote on the sign that hung above the entrance which read, “Enter as strangers…Leave as friends,” which seemed to sooth our uneasiness for the moment. As we entered the building, the small amount of apprehension that still existed in us, melted away, due to the delightful interior décor of the WineMakers Cellar. The first section of the large warehouse like structure was sectioned off from the rest of the building and decorated as a small bistro complete with its very own bar, which Kat and I headed straight for.   With a glass of Red in our hands we decided to explore the expansive structure that is The WineMakers Cellar.

Say Cheese!

Our first stop was the appetizer tables where we helped ourselves to artisanal cheeses, gourmet crackers, and assorted Hors doeuvres that were each better than the last one we tried. We then took our glasses of wine and plates full of food to the area of the building that was set up with tables. There was no assigned seating, and we chose a table at random to call ours for the evening. The room we were in was full of barrels of all different sizes, presumably full of wine that had been created by inexperienced folk such as ourselves under the watchful eye of The WineMakers Cellar Staff. As Kat and I talked amongst each other and the other individuals that had arbitrarily selected our table we were serenaded by the wonderful eclectic stylings of Jeff & Karen, which was a delightful addition to the ambiance of this event.

Cheers

Cheers

After finishing off our first glass of The WineMakers Cellar house blend Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc which was damn near celestial, Kat and I procured another glass of red before the presentation commenced. With our learning juice in hand, we were ready and willing to be educated. One of the experienced owners of the WineMakers Cellar approached the front of the room and began to speak to us about wine. To tell you the truth, Kat and I were expecting the hard sell approach about what The WineMakers Cellar offers but that was not the case. The presentation complete with a fancy Power Point slide show, consisted of the history of wine, the terminology that wine aficionados use, the different types of wine, the actual wine making process, and a quick and easy wine tasting lesson.   I was pleasantly surprised that this educational lecture felt more like a community college course than a time share offer.

Wine Tasting

Wine Tasting

After the learning was done, our glasses were empty, which was perfect because the wine tasting was up next. We all had the opportunity to utilize the information that we had just absorbed and taste four different wines that were made on site, at the WineMakers Cellar. As we sniffed, sipped and swallowed the wines that we were given, we discussed the complex flavors of each of the tasty potions.

Dinner is served!

Dinner is served!

Just when we thought that this enjoyable and informative evening could not get any better, dinner was served.   I have been to Justin’s Ristorante a few times before, and I was really excited when I heard that they would be catering this event. I was not disappointed by the tremendous spread of Italian food that was supplied by this often under rated local eatery. The offerings included Chicken Parmesan, Meatballs, Eggplant Rollatini, Penne in Vodka Sauce, and a hearty salad all served buffet style. As we ate this truly fantastic Italian smorgasbord, we continued to discuss the wine we had tasted throughout the evening with our table mates as if the 15 minute lesson that we had just been privileged to sit through made us wine experts.

As the night winded down and dessert was served, I thought back to the sign above the entrance of The WineMakers Cellar, and I understood why it was placed at the hearth of this establishment. All of us entered the building as strangers but in a few short hours we found ourselves saying good bye and honestly wishing our tablemates a good evening. There are only a few things in this world that can create a bond amongst strangers such as sprits and food, and The WineMakers Cellar completely comprehend this. On our way out the door, we were presented our two bottles of wine for the road and exited the building with full bellies and smiling faces. After attending this event, I do believe a Blue Collar Foodie wine may be an option all thanks to the fine folks at The WineMakers Cellar.

 

The Blue Collar Foodie Helps You Decide! Restaurant Week 2013 Edition

Restaurant Week 2013

Restaurant Week 2013

It is that time of year again folks! New York City Restaurant Week is about to commence and this year 317 restaurants will be serving up some of the finest food New York City has to offer, from January 14th until February 8th.  Each and every year more restaurants jump on the proverbial chuck wagon and attempt to compete for your business during the most hectic two weeks in the New York City restaurant business and the hardest part is choosing which restaurant to visit.  If you are as bad at making a decision as Notre Dame was at playing football this week, The Blue Collar Foodie has got you covered!  I have reviewed, inspected, and studied the New York City eateries participating in restaurant week this year and handpicked a few of my favorites to make your decision making process go a wee bit easier.

Before I get to the restaurants that made this exclusive list I first want to explain how these establishments were selected.  I evaluated each restaurant using the following criteria; the restaurant’s history, the building the restaurant is housed in, the menu offered, and of course the food they serve.  I then used a complex algorithm, not really but this sounded way too awesome not to write, and selected restaurants that not only serve remarkable food but also provide an amazing eating experience for the customer.

Considering I only get to visit these prestigious restaurants twice a year during restaurant week, due to budget restraints, my restaurant selection has to be more than just about food.  I want to visit famous buildings, have the chance to rub elbows with celebrities, dine where history actually happened, and do it all for 38 bucks plus tax and gratuity.  If you are looking for the best food this immense list has to offer this is not the review for you, but if you are looking for a once in a lifetime New York City experience keep reading!

It should be noted that I have not visited all of the restaurants that are on my list, so most of my research was done using the interwebs.  So if the restaurant that you choose is not as amazing as I say it is, please forward all your hate mail to dealwithit@Doyourowndamnresearch.com

To make your life even easier, I have broken down my selections to match the “by cuisine,” categories that are used on the NYC GO website, which lists all the restaurants that are participating.  I have also decided to follow Twitter’s lead and only use 140 characters to capture the essence of each eatery, I call them TweeViews.  If you like what you see in the Tweeview please visit the restaurant’s website to see more about the venue, by clicking the establishment’s name.  Furthermore, these selections are in Alphabetic order by cuisine type then restaurant name.  If you use this list to pick a restaurant out, I would love to hear about your experience in the comment section below, so please post.  Remember an outing into the City is really what you make of it, so as Barney from How I Met Your Mother would say, “Suit Up, and have a Legend, wait for it, Dary evening!”

 

Food Map

Gastronomic Map

American New

Butter:  A unique interior design inspired by nature paired with an eclectic menu featuring uncommon dishes make Butter a force to be reckoned with.

Hospoda:  Czech inspired fare paired with fresh pilsner instead of the normal wine creates a fresh take on fine dining at this upscale eatery.

The Lambs Club:  A famous chef and a building on the National Register of Historic Places that was home to one of America’s oldest theatrical organizations.

Leyla:  Boasting one of the finest menus on the restaurant week circuit, what it lacks in history it more than makes up for in culinary creativity.

Kutshers:  A modern Jewish American bistro, with roots in the Catskills, which offers Grandma’s favorites with a contemporary twist.

Park Avenue Winter:  A rustic American restaurant offering seasonal fare and a corresponding design that is only open until the end of winter begets spring.

Perilla:  With only 18, it is hard to score a table at this neighborhood restaurant, turned foodie mecca that focuses on fresh, seasonal ingredients.

Sprig:  Located in the Lipstick Building this posh eatery offers artistically prepared seasonal fare inspired by Northern California cuisine.

 

American Traditional

‘21’ Club:  A former New York City speak easy, still frequented by many celebrities, expertly serving awarding winning food with high class flare.

The Darby:  This former legendary Jazz and Blues Club turned chic eatery serves up creative cuisine with a side of swag in the form of live music.            

 

Asian Fusion        

Ajna Bar:  Beautiful interior design, renowned DJ’s, and a collision between French and Asian cuisine make Ajna Bar an appealing spot for 2013.

 

Barbecue

Hill Country BBQ:  New York’s own piece of Texas, serving up huge portions of fresh Barbecue for all of us with a city addresses but country souls.     

 

Chinese

Hakkasan:  This ain’t your local Chinese takeout joint; this is refined Chinese fare which is combined with a sophisticated and stylish dining area.

 

Continental

The Russian Tea Room:   A New York City Icon that was founded by members of the Russian Imperial Ballet and is frequented by the worlds’ most fastidious foodies.

 

French

L’ecole:  The ground floor of Fine Dining, located in the Int. Culinary Center; students from everywhere collaborate to create awe inspiring dishes.

 

Greek

Kellari:  A warm and inviting atmosphere that sets the tone for a Grecian inspired meal that the Chef lovingly prepares to celebrate his homeland.       

 

Indian

Junoon:  An extensive selection of interesting and delicious Indian dishes that offers the restaurant week veteran a wonderful escape from monotony.

Tamarind:  This trendy eatery is one of the most popular Indian restaurants in NYC, and one look at the décor coupled with the menu should explain why.

 

Italian

Asellina:  Sleek, posh, and chic describe this hip establishment where authentic Italian food collides with the modern day reality starlet scene.   

Barbetta:  Known as one of the most romantic restaurants in New York City, this is a great place for a couple to fall in love all over again.

Cipriani Dolci:  Located inside the majestic landmark that is Grand Central Terminal, Cipriani offers something to the architecture lover that others cannot.  

Pó:  An intimate space and fresh ingredients delivered daily by foot or bike by the surrounding markets, serving Italian food as it should be.     

The Leopard at des Artistes:  First time diners come for the buildings historical significance and the impressive art collection, but they come back for the food.

 

Japanese

Megu:  This establishment transports you to the Far East like no other restaurant I have ever been to, from design to dish, Megu is a phenomenal.

 

Korean

Bann:  A fantastic place to experience a variety of tantalizing Korean food while being surrounded by stunning authentic Korean décor.

 

Mediterranean

Ilili:  Ilili combines Lebanese cuisine with a Mediterranean flare, an epicurean delight perfect for the foodie looking to expand their palate.

 

Mexican

Maya:  Traditional Mexican cuisine meets modern culinary expertise at this contemporary eatery that promises warm Latin hospitality.

 

Pan/Latin

Raymi:  Billed as the best Peruvian restaurant in New York City with a menu and dining area that appears to back up that claim.

Rayuela:  A truly innovative and beautiful restaurant that created its own culinary genre known as estilo libre Latino or freestyle Latino.

 

Seafood

FishTag:  Mediterranean inspired seafood dishes expertly paired with wine from the imaginative culinary mind of world renowned chef Michael Psilakis.   

 

Southwestern

Mesa Grill:  Bobby Flay combines his passion for Southwestern cuisine and his love for grilling which leads to a marriage made in foodie heaven.

 

Spanish

Andanada 141:  A restaurant week menu truly built for adventurous foodies combined with a bull fighting theme makes this a great spot for thrill seekers.

 

Steakhouse

The Capital Grille Chrysler Center:  Located inside the Chrysler Center’s Trylon Towers, this highly rated chain steakhouse is an architecture aficionado’s dream.

 

Thai

Kittichai:  An exquisite design that lends itself to a romantic dinner for two with a menu that offers an inventive take on traditional Thai dishes.

 

Vietnamese

Le Colonial:  This one of a kind eatery transports you to a forgotten world known as French Indochina and serves French inspired Vietnamese cuisine.