Lifestyle and Food
One of the great things about living in New York is the serendipitous discovery of new things. A little while ago I stumbled upon Neuhaus, the luxury Belgian chocolatier at Grand Central Station. I have walked past the store many times but never went in; on this particular day, I decided to step inside and take a look. Many pictures and a chocolate later, I was delighted I did. I returned a week later to take more pictures for the blog; it turned out that Neuhaus was hosting an event that evening for food bloggers and reporters! An hour later I found myself at the Neuhaus flagship store on Madison Avenue for what would be my most delicious assignment just yet—sample fancy pralinés by nine internationally reowned pastry chefs.
What happens when Neuhaus partners with notable pastry chefs from around the world? A union of chocolate with unique local ingredients to create Haute Pâtisserie, a limited edition box containing a total of 27 pralinés. The event was hosted by Dominique Ansel, a French expatriate in New York known for his creation of the cronut. Ansel told us his creation was inspired by a childhood memory: “I remember tasting peanut butter for the first time at the age of six. It was an exciting flavor! I never tasted it again until I moved back to the States.” My favorite chocolate from this collection is by the Belgian, Raphaël Giot. He created a “slightly salted caramel ‘à l’ancienne’ on a layer of velvety praliné enriched with pieces of hazelnuts, enrobed with dark chocolate.” Trust me, it is delicious. If you can’t drop by the store you can order online here. Enjoy!
“I remember tasting peanut butter for the first time. It was an exciting flavor!”
“It is the pairing of the coffee with a delightful pastry that keeps me coming back”
One of my favorite spots for coffee in NYC is Financier patisserie, a charming shop that specializes in signature French pastries. Each serving of coffee comes with their signature pastry, The Financier, a gold bar-shaped almond cake. Their coffee is good, but it is the pairing of the coffee with a delightful pastry that keeps me coming back. I love it!
A few months ago I discovered Brewshot, a gourmet coffee and tea house in Jersey City. Designed by architect Joshua Cummings and graphic designer Ross Clugston, the space is bright and airy with exposed rafters and predominantly wood construction. Researching Brewshot online I discovered the owner Arun’s intent to have it serve as a creative space. Propped up againt the windows and walls, a collection of books and magazine from different eras on different subjects from Flaubert and Joyce to an English-Hungarian dictionary even the knick-knacks reflect this vision. So stop by. Grab a cup. Pull up a chair. Luxuriate