Recently, I took a seminar teaching valuable lessons on living an extraordinary life. It was a full weekend of inciteful knowledge about our existence and the purpose of our life. I can go on and on about some of the ideas expressed, but one thing that caught my attention was a brief conversation about meeting new people. In the seminar, it was mentioned how vastly different new relationships are formed by just changing one little thing: sharing opinions vs sharing stories. Since our group is based upon meeting new people, I found it very relevant. It was pointed out how people are too quick to give their opinion and too slow to share a story. Truly no one cares about a stranger’s opinion; yet, we all take great interest if a good story is shared. So, my advice is: let’s try to share new things about each other, new restaurants we have visited, new movies we have seen, favorite cities we have visited, rather than give an opinion on something. It is easy to ostracize yourself from others by stating your opinion on religion, on politics, on the meal, on the service, on Aaron, and very easy to get others to like you and build a strong common bond, by sharing a good story. Keep this in mind at your social events. I assure you that you will make many more friends and have more fun, than to be known as someone who is ‘opinionated.”
Onto the newsletter at hand! We had 2 events scheduled for February 26th, but due to a conflict with the Oscars, I decided to move Cuba Restaurant to the following week. Therefore, our final event this month is the Mardi Gras Jazz brunch at THE BLUE NOTE. Please RSVP now as I have a limited number of spots. Join famous trumpeter Joey Morant and others as they play tribute to NOLA style Jazz Music in possibly the most famous jazz blub in the world. Brunch comes with a show ticket, an entrée and a drink from the brunch menu. PLEASE NOTE CUBA RESTAURANT IS MOVED TO MARCH 5th, PLEASE RE-RSVP to this.
Our March starts off on Sunday, March 5th with CUBA RESTAURANT. Many from our Cuba trip will be dining here, so join us as we relive our fun memories of Cuba and drink NYC’s best mojitos. Our traditional delicious Cuban meal is really my ploy to get you to sign up for our next trip to Cuba, haha J. The following Sunday, March 12th we head to a new French restaurant for our group, JUBILEE. For over 23 years, Jubilee had been serving up phenomenal French fare to Sutton place residents. This is our first visit here and they have included duck foie gras on our menu. You might be seeing Juliane at this one, as that is her favorite thing in the world. The following week we head back to Peking Duck House, right around the corner from Jubilee. Join us Wednesday March 15th as we enjoy another fabulous meal of Peking duck and lots of delicious Chinese cuisine. The following Sunday we head downtown into the heart of the East Village to a restaurant I discovered in a recent “Time Out” article of new French Restaurants in NYC. I loved the memorable name and when I met the owner and dined here, I knew that I had to bring the group. Join us Sunday, March 19th at PARDON MY FRENCH. There are so many articles and reviews written about how great the food is here, all you need to do is join us to see for yourself. Later that week, om Wednesday, March 22nd, we will meet for cocktails near Lincoln Center at Atlantic Grill and then head to watch a live performance of the Philharmonia Orchestra of New York for a special show- “Symphonic Storyboards.” Watch a live performance by the PONY with cinematic film playing in the background to the music. This is one of a 4 show performance and is definitely going to be a highlight for the month. RSVP VERY EARLY for this. Finally, we end March on the UWS at a beautiful Italian restaurant MACHIEVELLI on Sunday, March 26th . Join us as the restaurant has set up a special opera night just for our group. We dined here last year and 42 showed up! The food was amazing, the atmosphere great, and the music will be fantastic.
The following February events are still available for Single Gourmet Members and their guests:
- Blue Note- New Orleans Mardi Gras brunch featuring Joey Morant and Catfish Stew.”- 131 West 3rd (off 6th Avenue @ West 4th Subway). Sunday, February 26th 1:15 arrival for 1:30 brunch and show $49 Live Show, Brunch Entree, 1 drink, tax &tip.
The following March events are available for Single Gourmet Members and their guests:
Cuba Restaurant and Rum Bar
222 Thompson Street (Bleecker and West 3rd)
2 blocks South of Washington Square Park
3 blocks East of West 4th Street (ABCDEFM)
Sunday, March 5th
5:30 pm optional drinks; 6:15 pm dinner
$75 3-course meal, mojito or sangria, tax & tip
I decided to eat here before taking the group to Cuba just to get a feel of what would be in store in Havana for myself, and I fell in love with this place. Zagat rated 4.3 they say, “Everyone’s Havana great time at this high-energy Village supplier of authentic Cuban standards and heavenly mojitos charmingly served in funky Latin digs with a vacation vibe.” In keeping with Cuban tradition, everyone will get a mojito (or sangria) with the meal. Voted best mojito in town, I must admit it was better than many we had in Cuba (except for the ones we made in our cocktail class). Our menu will include many Cuban specialties such as a seafood casserole of lobster tail, shrimp, scallops, monk fish, clams and mussels in a lobster cream sauce with diced sweet plantains or shredded skirt steak braised in salsa criolla, sliced onions and peppers nested in a tropical plantain basket or roasted chicken breast with sweet peas, cherry tomatoes, avocado with sweet plantains and saffron rice. Traditional appetizers and desserts are also included. It is happy hour with $5 mojitos and sangria during our cocktail time. RSVP by Thursday March 2nd please.
948 First Avenue (52nd and 53rd)
Sunday, March 12th
5:30pm optional drinks, 6:30 dinner
$89 3- course French, gl wine, coffee, tax & tip
Zagat says; a “clientele of a certain age touts this longtime Sutton Place–area bistro as a haven of relaxed sophistication that’s like a quick trip to Paris; it’s not noisy and the seafood-oriented French fare is tasty.” I dined here a few times in the past and each course is artistically displayed and a delicious delight. Michelin Guide states, “settled into sleek Sutton Place, Jubilee is New York City’s very own version of Cheers. Affluent families are in full force here, while friends gather on weeknights to mingle over wine and fine French-Belgian cuisine. The European-inflected nautical décor screams quaint coastal elegance with perpetually packed tables and a bar where everybody knows your name.” New York Magazine states, “Hidden in a townhouse off of First Avenue, this unassuming French bistro has held steady since 1994 as one of the few decent restaurants among Sutton Place’s bland mix of anonymous pubs and sushi joints. The place is always packed, and….the décor mimics the French countryside with homey furniture.” Four stars on YELP, Our menu includes soup of the day, arugula with blue cheese, green apples and walnuts or terrine of duck foie gras with fruit chutney, entrée choices of free range chicken, Atlantic salmon or black angus steak, followed by warm applet tart, profiterolles, or crème brulee.
Peking Duck House
236 East 53rd St (2nd /3rd )
Wednesday, March 15th
5:30pm optional drinks, 6:15 pm dinner
$72- meal, tea, soda, NO wine tax and tip
We missed the Chinese New Year’s at Peking Duck House this year, but always a fan favorite of our group, we decided we must go back to this midtown gem. Chinese restaurants are always a popular night for our group and Peking Duck is always on the menu. Our family style meal will be sure to fill you up and leave you hungry in an hour (a little Chinese-food humor). Zagat rated 23, “with its juicy meat and savory, crispy skin, the signature Peking duck carved tableside is a real treat at these old-fashioned Chinese spots.” Our meal includes: barbecued beef, fried pork dumplings, spring roll, Peking duck, prawns w. chili Peking style, ma-la chicken, sliced beef w. orange flavor, sesame scallops, crispy string beans, yang chow fried rice, ice cream and fruits. This time we will have fortune cookies.
Pardon My French
103 Avenue B (6th and 7th street)
Sunday, March 19th
5:30 optional drinks, 6:15pm dinner
$73 3- course, glass of wine, tax and tip
One of the hottest new restaurants in town, Zagat, rates PMF a high 4.3 stating this is “a remake of the famous East Village restaurant Casimir by the same owners, this New Wave French bistro offers delicious small plates and upscale entrees until the wee hours, the inviting, softly lit setting oozes charm and includes a speakeasy spiffy cocktail bar.” Time out Magazine says, “the charming and surprisingly spacious spot continues to draw crowds from near and far for its modern riffs on French bistro classics…..the emphasis here is clearly on indulgence and hospitality, both of which come in spades and make this a spot where it would be wise to become a regular.” Four stars on YELP. This is 2 avenues east of 1st avenue between 6th and 7th street. We had many venture to Virginia’s in Alphabet city and it was WELL worth it, this too is worth the visit to the East Village. PMF is closer West than Virginia’s by a very long avenue.
Philharmonia Orchestra of New York
Lincoln Center- Rose Theatre
Meet at Atlantic Grill @ 49 West 64th Street
Wednesday, March 22nd
6pm-7pm optional drinks Atlantic Grill. 7:30 show
$55 show tickets (Mezzanine)
Hailed as one of the “most progressive modern orchestras” by The Observer, Philharmonia Orchestra of New York (PONY) returns to Rose Theater for two powerful concerts of musical storytelling by Wagner, Verdi and Rimsky-Korsakov under maestro Atsushi Yamada, including the dazzling orchestral showpiece Scheherazade. Symphonic Storyboards takes audiences on gripping journeys of love and lust, light and darkness, passion and betrayal, all told through music performed by world-class musicians accompanied by striking original films on a huge screen. PONY is proud to welcome back the students of Project Hand in Hand for these concerts. For the past six years, the musicians of PONY and Project Hand in Hand have worked together to help the children of Japan affected by the East Japan disaster through the power of music. Classical Masterpieces brought to life on the big screen during performances by Philharmonic Orchestra of New York with Music by Wagner, and Rimsky-Korsakov and movies by winners of the world’s first orchestral film competition movie projections by Kanye West collaborator Daniel Brodie along with state-of-the-art concert lighting in the largest theater for Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Rose Hall which was specifically designed for live-music acoustics. We will meet before this event at Atlantic Grill for an optional drink.
Machiavelli- Opera Night
Sunday, March 26th
519 Columbus Avenue @85th Street
5:30pm optional drinks, 6:30pm dinner
$79 3-course w/glass of wine, coffee, tax, tip
Voted by Zagat as one of the best Upper West Side restaurants, Machiavelli’s Northern Italian menu features handmade pastas and Northern Italian specialties. Zagat rated 23 and 24 for decor- “Dine like a prince at this elegant, UWS Italian, where plush upholstered chairs, candelabras and gorgeous Renaissance-inspired murals– not to mention live classical music– set the romantic tone; with pricey, carefully prepared Northern Italian fare.” Our menu includes appetizers of calamari, warm chicken liver over toasted bread or organic baby kale salad with red onion, green apple and Italian bacon. Our entrees include risotto with shrimp, green peas & Prosecco or traditional Genovese stamped pasta coins with white mushroom ragu olive oil and garlic or Casunzei Ampezzani a specialty of the Dolomiti region which is home-made pasta filled with red beet and ricotta topped with a butter & poppy seed sauce, or breast of chicken with lemon and white wine with mixed roasted vegetables or monkfish ossobuco with capers and grape tomato in white wine sauce . Our dessert include chocolate mousse or apple strudel. They have brought on the opera night show just for our group, this a group of young opera singers coming in for this night to entertain us, please tip them accordingly.
To reserve at any or all the events please go to our website or call us at (646-825-0268), email us at email@example.com or mail checks to: The Single Gourmet, c/o Aaron Lefkowitz, 69 west 9th Street Apt #6A, New York, NY 10011.
- Blue Note- Mardi Gras Jazz Brunch Sun, Feb 26th 1:15pm $49_________
- Cuba- Authentic Cuban Cuisine Sun, March 5th 5:30pm $75_________
- Jubilee- Sutton Place French Sun, March 12th 5:30pm $89_________
- Peking Duck House- High rated Chinese Wed, March 15th 5:30pm $72_________
- PARDON MY FRENCH- East Village top French Sun, March 19th 5:30pm $73_________
- NY Philharmonic Storyboards Wed, Marc 22nd 7:10pm $55__________
- Machiavelli- Upper West Side Italian Sun, March 26th 5:30pm $79_________
- VANCOUVER & Seattle (with optional Portland) Estimated Wed May 24-May 31st TBD ___________