Join Karen Page and Chef Divya Alter, author of What to Eat For How You Feel, At Rizzoli April 13th in NYC

“Connect with what’s going on for you right now,
and then choose something that will help you balance that.”
Chef Divya Alter, as quoted by Rachel Sugar in Bon Appetit

Want a virtually foolproof way of feeling better after your next meal?  If you live in New York City, get yourself to dinner at Divya’s Kitchen, the new acclaimed Ayurvedic restaurant in the East Village owned by Bulgarian-born chef Divya Alter.

Top Right: Karen Page, Divya Alter, and Andrew Dornenburg

And if you’re not fortunate enough to find yourself in Manhattan, you’re still in luck:  Alter just released her first cookbook entitled What to Eat for How You Feel (Rizzoli, 2017), and it’s a beauty — which you can pick up at better bookstores near you, or on Amazon.com.

Divya is a certified nutritional consultant and educator in the Shaka Vansiya Ayurveda tradition. She is the cofounder of Bhagavat Life, the only Ayurvedic culinary school in New York City, where she and her husband launched North America’s first Ayurvedic chef certification program.  The couple also cofounded Divya’s Kitchen, an authentic Ayurvedic café.

Left: Ayurvedic chef and author Divya Alter Right: Karen Page, author of The Flavor Bible

Manhattanites can join Karen Page, who wrote the Foreword for What to Eat for How You Feel, in conversation with Divya Alter this Thursday, April 13th, from 6-8 pm, at the Rizzoli bookstore at 1133 Broadway (at 26th St.).  In addition to hearing about Ayurvedic cuisine, and how it helped Divya completely turn her health around, you’ll be able to taste some of the dishes whose recipes are featured in the book, which are invariably as delicious as they are healthful.

This event is free, and no RSVP is required.  Hope to have the delicious pleasure of seeing you there!

Divya’s Kitchen is located at 25 First Avenue (at 1st Street) in Manhattan. 212.477.4834. divyaskitchen.com

What to Eat for How You Feel draws on Divya Alter’s many years of vegetarian cooking, catering, and teaching.  It features 100 recipes for breakfasts, soups, salads, main dishes, one-pot meals, treats, and beverages in three seasonal chapters. It also includes an ingredient guide along with recipes for staples such as cultured ghee, fresh cheese, yogurt, nondairy milk alternatives, dressings, chutneys, and spice blends. Alter offers practical ways to bridge the ancient wisdom of food with modern living beyond the bound- aries of India. Dishes such as Asian-style Stir-Fried Red and Black Rice, Italian-style Spinach Risotto, and French-style Braised Root Vegetables are accessible to all and carry the healing benefits of Ayurvedic cooking.

Honoring The New Jewish Home’s “Eight Over 80” Remarkable, Creative Lives — Including That Of Culinary Legend Jacques Pepin

Top left: “Eight Over 80” honoree Jacques Pepin with legendary chef Andre Soltner; Top right: Jacques Pepin with Karen Page, Jacques Pepin with Andre Soltner: Bottom left: Jacques addresses the crowd in the ballroom of the Mandarin Oriental; Andre Soltner with Andrew Dornenburg; Andre Soltner, Alain Sailhac, Karen Page, Arlene Feltman Sailhac, and Jacques Pepin; Bottom Right: The “Eight Over 80” honorees

When a culinary legend as beloved as Jacques Pépin is being honored, it honestly doesn’t require any arm-twisting to get us excited about joining in the celebration.

So when we were invited to attend Tuesday night’s fourth annual gala at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in New York City honoring eight extraordinary people who are living proof that octogenarians can be vital and creative and inspiring, we were only too happy to see that Jacques would be among them.

Meeting Jacques Pepin at the 2009 James Beard Awards after-party

Winning our second James Beard Book Award for THE FLAVOR BIBLE in 2009 was a thrill for us, not the least of which was the perk of getting to meet Jacques at the Awards after-party hosted by Daniel Boulud at Bar Boulud (photo, left).

In the fall of 2014, we happened to cross paths while staying at the same hotel in San Francisco while we were on book tour with THE VEGETARIAN FLAVOR BIBLE, as Jacques was in town shooting his public TV show for KQED.  All memories of our hours-delayed flight out of Chicago were banished over the impromptu drinks it led to after bumping into Pepin and his colleague, delighting in Jacques’ wonderful stories.  We found it impossible to believe that Jacques was about to turn 80, as he claimed, so we Googled it — which is how we discovered that Jacques and Andrew share the same birthday:  December 18th.  (Karen’s and James Beard’s are just three days apart.)

It turns out that Jacques is being kept very busy this week picking up awards in Manhattan:  He mentioned Tuesday night that he was on his way to last night’s Spoons Across America event at the Essex House to present Rachael Ray with an award he’d been honored with a few years ago, not to mention to pick up an honorary doctorate at his alma mater Columbia University.

The latter seems to offer more than a little satisfaction to Pepin, who earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Columbia in 1970 and 1972, respectively, writing his master’s thesis on Voltaire.  However, his proposed thesis for Columbia’s PhD program — a study of food in French literature spanning Balzac, Proust, Voltaire, and Zola — was flatly refused.  Let that be a lesson to all the young ‘uns reading this of just how much the perception of food has changed in American society over the past half-century.  And let none of us forget the important role of a visible, articulate chef like Jacques Pepin in changing that perception.

Left to right: Andre Soltner, Alain Sailhac, Karen Page, Arlene Feltman Sailhac, and Jacques Pepin at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel

We relished the chance to salute Jacques, along with his fellow “Eight Over 80” honorees:  style icon Iris Apfel; dancer, choreographer, and actress Carmen de Lavallade; civil rights attorney Vernon Jordan, television luminary Norman Learand business and philanthropic leaders Morris W. Offit, and Barbara and Donald Tober.

Making the celebration all the more festive was the good company of Pepin’s dear friends and esteemed colleagues Andre Soltner (whom Pepin has referred to as “one of the greatest chefs in existence”), Arlene Feltman Sailhac (founder of DeGustibus cooking school, and a fellow member of Karen’s in Les Dames d’Escoffier), and Alain Sailhac (Dean Emeritus of New York’s International Culinary Center).

Sponsoring “Eight Over 80” is The New Jewish Home, a not-for-profit that is committed to transforming eldercare for New Yorkers so they can live meaningful lives in the place they call home. The event celebrates life and aging in an entirely new way, just as The New Jewish Home has been serving New Yorkers of all faiths and ethnicities for nearly 170 years as one of the nation’s largest and most diversified not-for-profit geriatric health and rehabilitation systems.

Congratulations again, Jacques!

The “8 Over 80” Awards are hosted by The New Jewish Home:  8over80.org

Check out episodes of Jacques Pepin‘s cooking shows here:  Jacques Pepin’s Essential PepinJacques Pepin’s Heart & Soul, and Jacques Pepin’s More Fast Food My Way

Ayesha Curry Praises CULINARY ARTISTRY and THE FLAVOR BIBLE

Ayesha Curry (center) recommends both CULINARY ARTISTRY and THE FLAVOR BIBLE in a recent interview

Canadian-American Food Network host, mother of two, and author of the cookbook The Seasoned Life, Ayesha Curry — who has the better part of a million followers on Twitter — was interviewed by TheChalkboardMag.com about her favorite cookbooks, and managed to mention both CULINARY ARTISTRY and THE FLAVOR BIBLE, much to our delight.

When asked to name “3 Cookbooks That Should Be In Every Kitchen,” she replies, “Mine – The Seasoned Life.  Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child.  CULINARY ARTISTRY by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page.”

Later, when asked to name “The Best Cookbook for Ultra-Foodies,” her pick is “THE FLAVOR BIBLE by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen A. Page.”

We imagine that anyone with such excellent taste in culinary books has no doubt written one worth checking out, so we just ordered our copy of The Seasoned Life (which you can do here).

You can also read the entire interview with Ayesha here.

Ayesha Curry‘s website is at ayeshacurry.com.

You can purchase her cookbook The Seasoned Life here.

USA Today‘s Reviewed.com Editors Name Our Book THE FLAVOR BIBLE As One of “11 Cookbooks Everyone Should Own”


“Here at Reviewed, our staff has strong opinions on…well, pretty much everything. So when I asked them to dish on their favorite cookbooks, of course, I got some seriously poignant testimonials.  With a range of experience (and interest) in cooking and various culinary restrictions, preferences, and backgrounds, there was no overlap in our go-to cookbooks. Here’s what our staff members reach for in the comfort of their own kitchens….”
Jessica Teich (top left), USA Today‘s Reviewed.com

Calling it “the ultimate cookbook round-up,” editor Jessica Teich of USA Today‘s Reviewed.com revealed on March 3rd her staff’s picks for “11 Cookbooks Everyone Should Own” — which we were delighted to see include THE FLAVOR BIBLE.

Count us proud to find THE FLAVOR BIBLE in the good company of classics like Joy of Cooking and How to Cook Everything, as well as the rest of Teich’s list, which you’ll find here.

Michael Desjardin

THE FLAVOR BIBLE‘s inclusion is apparently thanks to the recommendation of staff writer Michael Desjardin, who wrote of his recommendation “For the Creative Type“:

“This isn’t your traditional book of recipes. In fact, you’re not gonna find any recipes in here at all. Instead, THE FLAVOR BIBLE is a compendium of just about every ingredient you can imagine with lists of complementary flavors and why these pairings tend to work.  I love THE FLAVOR BIBLE because of how it encourages me to engage with my food rather than work my way passively through a basic recipe. It’s like kindling for culinary inspiration; while most cookbooks ask me politely to stay on the trail, THE FLAVOR BIBLE invites me to stray off the beaten path and take risks. After all, isn’t that what cooking is all about?”

Indeed it is, Michael — and our heartfelt thanks to you for saying so!

Reviewed.com editor Jessica Teich‘s list of the “11 Cookbooks Everyone Should Own” — which features THE FLAVOR BIBLE — can be found at Reviewed.com.

Toasting the 2017 Oscar Nominees With Flutes of Piper-Heidsieck, The Exclusive Champagne of the 2017 Academy Awards

A bottle of Piper-Heidsieck Champagne appeared in Laurel and Hardy’s 1933 debut film “Sons of the Desert.”  Over the better part of a century since, Piper-Heidsieck has continued to forge a close relationship with the global film community.

This morning we were delighted to be able to hear the 2017 Oscars nominations announced live at The Tuck Room at the iPic Theater in downtown Manhattan while sipping flutes of #PiperRed Piper-Heidsieck Champagne — which is yet again the sole Champagne to be served during the Academy Awards season.

iPic Corporate Sommelier Adam Seger, an alum of Chicago’s Tru and Napa Valley’s French Laundry, cheerfully sabered a magnum for guests to enjoy at today’s event.  (A multitalented professional, Adam told us he uses THE FLAVOR BIBLE regularly in the creation of The Tuck Room’s cocktails and spirits.)

 

This year marks the third year of a long-term relationship cemented between the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and Piper-Heidsieck.  In addition to the Oscars ceremony on February 26th, Piper-Heidsieck is the exclusive Champagne poured at Academy Awards events in Los Angeles, New York City, and London, not to mention the Oscars Nominee Luncheon (February 6th) and the Governors Ball.

Piper-Heidsieck has also been the official Champagne of the International Cannes Film Festival for more than two decades.

As we were leaving today’s event, we chatted with Piper-Heidsieck’s importer Terlato Wines’ Mary Anne Sullivan, who told us she’d seen 2017 Best Picture nominee “La La Land” on site at the iPic theater.  “You’ve got to see a movie here!” she enthused.

Getting ready for the Oscars on February 26th, with a popcorn-box-shaped Champagne bucket and a bottle of Piper-Heidsieck Champagne near our animal print theater seats at home

She didn’t have to twist our arms.  While we’re currently planning to watch the 2017 Oscars in our own “in-home theater” (see photo above) with glasses of Piper-Heidsieck, we’re already looking forward to returning to iPic for a movie and to The Tuck Room to sample some of Adam’s cocktails.

Piper-Heidsieck is one of France’s oldest Champagne houses, created in 1785, and is part of the EPI Group.  The Champagne is imported to the U.S. by Terlato Wines. piper-heidsieck.com

The Tuck Room is located in the iPic theater at 11 Fulton Street at Fulton Market at the South Street Seaport, and is a destination-worthy venue taking great pride in its food and drink program, overseen by James Beard Award-winning chef Sherry Yard and passionate sommelier and mixologist Adam Seger. thetuckroom.com

Meet Our New Favorite Neighborhood Restaurant: NORMA Gastronomia Siciliana

NORMA Gastronomia Siciliana chef-owner Salvatore Fraterrigo, who goes by “Toto”

Every restaurant lover dreams of the day the perfect neighborhood spot opens near them.  For those times that even those of us who love to cook just don’t feel like cooking or getting in a cab, we require someone talented enough in the kitchen to keep us from regretting our decision to not eat at home.

So we’re especially grateful that talented chef-owner Salvatore Fraterrigo (or “Toto,” as his chef’s jacket states) took all the experience he gained from his days cooking in Italy, Paris, and New York City (including at Il Buco and  i Trulli) and channeled it into his charming and delicious new NORMA Gastronomia Siciliana.

How charming?  By our second visit, Leonardo (in the striped sweater, below) greeted us both by name and remembered our table and our favorite wines by the glass (which included their gently-priced Chardonnay and Frappatto).

How delicious?  Our leftover pizza (having sampled both the $16 eggplant-pepper-and-zucchini Ortolana and $19 Porcini versions), which we enjoyed for breakfast the next morning, was even better than the fresh pizza we’ve been served at other touted spots.

Top Left: NORMA Arancine, in front of the whole stuffed artichoke; Middle Left: Leonardo; Bottom Left: NORMA’s Ortolana pizza; Middle Right: Eggplant Parmesan Timbale; Bottom Right: NORMA’s desserts include miniature cannoli

The knife-and-fork-required NORMA Arancine ($12) is so filling we didn’t order this delicious stuffed cone of deep-fried rice on our second visit so we could force ourselves to try other dishes — which is how we discovered that NORMA also offers our favorite new “eggplant Parmesan” in the city.  It isn’t anything like any other version we’ve ever had.  Toto celebrates the flavor and texture of eggplant through his timballo di melanzane alla Parmegiana ($14), which is a timale featuring beautifully wrapped slices of tender eggplant on a bed of intensely-flavored tomato sauce.

NORMA is due to open for breakfast soon, so we’re already dreaming of having a new spot to enjoy our morning coffee and Italian pasticcio in the weeks ahead.

NORMA Gastronomia Siciliana is at 438 Third Avenue (bet. 30th & 31st Streets) in Manhattan.  212.889.0600.  Website:  normarestaurant.com

Finding Inspiration In Energy + Color + Beauty — Sometimes Quite Unexpectedly

auraskarenandrew_collage

Last night at the Whitney Museum, visual artist Christina Lonsdale captured our auras on camera — which she’ll be doing all week long while she’s in residence at the Whitney through December 17th

When you’re researching /writing / photographing a new book on the subject of creativity (KITCHEN CREATIVITY | Little, Brown; Fall 2017), it can lead you to some pretty interesting places — especially if you’re able to keep your mind open to things it might not fully comprehend.

“One of the most sought-after psychics you’ve never heard of.”
–ABC News “Nightline,” on Paul Selig

Paul Selig absolutely blew my mind the first time I saw him… Goosebumps included.”
—Sammy Hagar, musician

iamthewordcoverYesterday, we had the pleasure of spending much of the day in the company of NYU and Yale graduate Paul Selig, an academic (who served on the faculty of NYU for more than two decades) and playwright who has emerged as a channel and author of multiple books including 2010’s I Am The Word We first heard of Paul less than a month ago, when we happened upon a very positive mention of him on a friend’s website, which led us to check out his segment on ABC’s “Nightline” and to buy a few of his books — which we’ve been finding intriguing, to say the least.  When we’d discovered that Paul would be making a public appearance in Manhattan yesterday, we made plans to attend with a fellow author friend and had an experience none of us will soon forget.

“Talk about good vibrations: Photographer and aura reader Christina Lonsdale uses electromagnetic currents to harness the energy behind some of fashion’s most spirited visionaries.”
–Harper’s Bazaar, on Christina Lonsdale’s portraits of designers including Tory Burch, Donna Karan, and Diane von Furstenberg

whitneymuseumlogoOur time with Paul left us vibrating and energized — which we had no idea that Portland-based visual artist Christina Lonsdale of Radiant Human would actually be able to capture when she photographed us last night at the Whitney Museum of American Art.  Christina is in residence at the Whitney (of which we’re proud Founding Members) through December 17th, taking portraits with her unique camera that photographs auras, translating human electromagnetic fields into colors.  Christina — the “daughter of an energy painter mother and a two-time commune founding father,” who was “raised on mysticism at the dawn of the digital age” — then translates the auras’ colors for her subjects:

Key to Interpreting An Aura Photo:

Above the head = state of mind
Andrew: playful & whimsical
Karen: visionary & loves to be inspired

Photo left = interior
Both of us: devoted & intuitive

Photo right = exterior
Andrew: results driven & works well with structure
Karen: nurturing & sensitive

While reservations to sit for a portrait with Christina are sold out, half the available spots are being reserved for walk-ins, so there is a pretty good chance you might still be able to score a portrait of your own aura.  (See the green box below for details.)

untitleddec2016_collage

“All the energy and beauty at Untitled are on the plates. They throb with color. It’s not just decoration, either. The color mostly comes from fruits and vegetables so ripe they’re ready to pop. “
–Pete Wells, The New York Times

If you’re in search of energy and beauty, you can’t lose with a visit to the Whitney — because even if you don’t happen to land a coveted sitting with Christina, you can still avail yourselves of one of our favorite restaurants in the city.  We’ve been huge fans of Untitled at the Whitney since opening day (May 1, 2015), and are always amazed to see the restaurant — whose kitchen is headed by 2015 James Beard Outstanding Chef Mike Anthony, chef de cuisine Suzanne Cupps, and pastry chef Miro Uskokovic, with its drinks program overseen by beverage director Eduardo Porto Carreiro (pictured above) — get better and better with every visit.

How amazing is Untitled’s hospitality?  Eduardo Carreiro and his colleague Arjav Ezekiel (whom we’d enjoyed first meeting at Washington, DC’s Komi) managed to spy us outside the restaurant examining our aura photos, and during their busy Saturday night dinner service, came outside to say hello for a moment and to invite us inside.  While we were disappointed to have to take a raincheck, we’re making it a point to arrive hungry next time we’re anywhere in the vicinity of Untitled — as we were lucky enough to be last weekend, when we experienced an extraordinary lunch featuring some of New York’s best vegetable-based dishes, explosive with both flavor and color (as you can see from the photos above).

whitneyoutsidedec2016_collage

Top left: Empire State Building; Left: Karen Page

Despite last night’s cold December evening air, Andrew was still inspired to shoot outside on the Whitney’s rooftop, which offers some of our favorite views of the Empire State Building!

auraskarenandrew_collage

Paul Selig is the author of I Am The Word.  His website is PaulSelig.com.

Radiant Human is the initiative of visual artist Christina Lonsdale.  Her website is RadiantHuman.com.

The Whitney Museum of American Art is hosting artist Christina Lonsdale in residence through December 17th, so there’s still a chance to walk in and have your own aura photographed.  Visit whitney.org.

Untitled is one of our favorite restaurants in New York City — and just so happens to be located on the first floor of the Whitney Museum, just steps from the aura exhibit.  Visit untitledatthewhitney.com.