Monday, March 17, 2014

The DBGB Whole Hog Dinner, Who's Taking the Head Home?

It's my friend Jason's birthday. Jason is the guy who introduced me to NYC's culinary scene and taught me how to eat and appreciate "fancy" food; he's also the guy who arranged a 10pm Sunday night Momofuku fried chicken dinner and invited me to his birthday dinner at Vinegar Hill House, still one of my favorite meals I've had since living in the city. Most of my knowledge on food and drink from fennel salad to negronis, I learned from him. This year, in typical Jason fashion, he chose DBGB's whole hog dinner for his birthday. The drool-enhancing menu is as follows and is for a maximum of 8 people:
While the roasted suckling pig is the headliner, I actually think the sides are the spotlight, in particular the cheesy potato and kohlrabi gratin. I love a dinner where the sides shine on its own and bring everything together, which this meal did perfectly with fried pork rinds, thick cut bacon in the brussel sprouts and bacon cookies shaped as pigs to finish the meal. NOT TO MENTION THE BOMB-ASS BAKED ALASKA. I've never had a Baked Alaska before (or even knew what it was) but what I ate--a spin on spumoni with vanilla/pistachio/raspberry ice-cream blanketed by a thin layer of alcohol soaked yellow cake and whip cream--exceeded all my expectations.

Dinner was a hefty sum but worth every cent as it was my good friend's birthday, spent with my favorite people and another NYC culinary experience to add to my list. Here are some pictures from dinner:
FYI, I took the hog head home.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

The 2nd Annual EPIC Oscars Dinner Party [PHOTOS]

Last year's Oscars Dinner Party was such a huge success that my friends and I had to do it again this year. The brief is simple, everyone has to bring a dish, dessert or drink inspired by a Best Picture nominee, which were: 
  • American Hustle
  • Captain Phillips
  • Dallas Buyers Club
  • Gravity
  • Her
  • Nebraska
  • Philomena
  • 12 Years a Slave
  • The Wolf of Wall Street
This time, most of us actually watched the movies AND we had two weeks to plan (instead of a few days), so I had somewhat high expectations for the food. I wasn't disappointed. I was so impressed by my friends' creativity and cleverness--and if not that, their effort--that I'm going to give out awards for the Best Picture award-inspired dishes (see what I did there? INCEPTION.). Here are the winners:

Best Cinematography aka "Use of Instagram Filters" - Peter
Budweiser Tall Boys for Nebraska
Best Last-Minute-Inspired-by-the-Trailer Dish - Ben
Fugazi Fugasi Frisee Salad for The Wolf of Wall Street
Best "I work in Film" Inside Joke - Jason
Angel HAIR ACTING for American Hustle
Best Foreign Surprise - Fiorella and Diego
South American Hustle Empanadas for American Hustle
Best Drunken Munchies - Jared and Kristen
Somali Samosas for Captain Phillips
Best Movie Title Spin-Off - Rachel and Tim
Club House Sandwiches with Mustard & Mayo Syringes for Dallas Buyers Club
Best "I didn't watch the movie but want British Food" Dish - Sean and Zeny
Steak, Ale and Mushroom Pie for Philomena
Best Sugar High - Juno and Stephanie
Momofuku Milk Bar Crack Pies and Baggies of...

Confectioners Sugar! for The Wolf of Wall Street
Best Food for Movie Without Food (and Non-Astronaut Ice Cream Cop Out) - Alex
Moon Pies for Gravity
Most Ambitious Attempt - Hannah
Scarlet Velvet OS cakes for Her
Actual Best Picture Winner-Inspired Dessert - Jared
Warm Blackberry Crumble for 12 Years of Slave
Thank you to everyone who came and contributed. An Oscars dinner party is a great idea for any host who wants their guests to pass out before the Best Picture award is announced, if they haven't passed out already. My only complaint is I have to wait a full year for the next Oscars--what event could I do the next themed dinner party for?