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The Secret History Of The Most Spectacular Restaurant In The World

Among the many and profound losses on September 11, 2001, was the destruction of one of New York’s most treasured restaurants—Windows on the World. I still vividly remember the extraordinary experiences I had dining on the 107th floor of the World Trade Center. And an enthralling new book, The Most Spectacular Restaurant in the World, by veteran writer Tom Roston, brought those memories (and so many others) back to me.

Within ten pages, I pushed aside everything else I was doing and read the book for hours, because Roston has written something far more illuminating and edifying than a chronicle of this ridiculously audacious achievement, feeding people a quarter of a mile in the sky.

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Ask any native New York baby boomer what was the exciting era of this city, and without hesitation, almost everyone will say “the ‘70s.” Long before everyone started singing “I Love New York,” the only people who wanted to be in this town were those who lived here, because it was dirty, crime-ridden, rough and broke. It was also thrilling, exciting, and frankly pretty damn fabulous, because the people who chose to live in this city were arrogant enough to believe they could do anything against all odds. That’s why, while the Federal Government refused to bail out the city’s financial crisis (instigating the famous Daily News headline “Ford to City: Drop Dead”), those Twin Towers were on the rise, and a restaurateur with bravado to spare figured he could give these gleaming structures a gustatorial crown that would be the envy of all.

Since you really can’t tell the story of the creation of Windows on the World—which opened in 1976—without understanding both the odds against its success and the maniacal drive to make it a reality, Roston has crafted the most detailed, all-consuming and thoroughly spellbinding portrait of my hometown during this daunting, delirious decade that I’ve ever read.

Roston was aware that “as a storyteller, one of the great challenges here was the everyone knows the ending. Then how do you hold people’s attention?  By telling people everything that happened before. I was astonished that when I looked into it, it’s a story that has never been told.”

And what Roston reveals is a story about incredible characters: The brilliant and sly P.T. Barnum-esque showmanship of Windows’ driving force, Joe Baum; the tyrannical but effective manner of his chosen manager, Al Lewis, of whom Roston writes “his son called him the meanest man in town”; the handsome and imposing maître’d, P.T. Eggar, who made a fortune getting his palm greased for those most-desired tables by the window because as Roston notes, “he was selling real estate”; as well as the untried but inspired sommelier, the private club manager who kept his money in his sock, and a host of others who were responsible for Windows on the World becoming the highest-grossing restaurant on the planet.

Roston believes it’s also “a story of immigrants. Over thirty languages were spoken in the restaurant. So many came so far because to work here was the chance of a lifetime.”

And it’s a tale of architectural wonder. How do you alter a unique, but rigid structural design to achieve panoramic views? How do you get gas up 107 floors? You don’t. Then how do you cook? And it’s a history of New York’s growing sophistication with food. “Now we toss it off, but back then whoever heard of coconut shrimp?” Baum wanted chef Michael Lomonaco’s menu to astonish as much as the view.”

But most important, Roston revels in the fact that it’s a story about a city that boasts something even more hypnotic than its skyline—the people who make this city come alive. There is the aerialist Philippe Petit, who tightroped across the top of both buildings and “not only humanized the structures but turned these previously unloved buildings into an attraction.” The great food critic Gael Greene’s all-important cover story in New York Magazine, then the most influential periodical in town, calling this what is now the title of this book. “I couldn’t believe how this restaurant absorbed all the trauma and the triumphs of this city. How people trapped at the restaurant handled the blackout of 1977 (they had a blast and ate for free), the first bombing of the building in 1993, and the celebrities as diverse as John Lennon and Henry Kissinger who came and were either loved or loathed by the staff.

And it’s a tale of tragic sorrow, of a city forever changed by the loss of, not the restaurant, or even the buildings, but of thousands of loved ones. “I’m so grateful that the victim’s compensation fund rallied to help the families of the seventy-three people who lost their lives working at Windows,” Roston says.

But as he admits, knowing the awful ending gave him an inspiration that makes this book such a compelling read. “When you hear a memorable eulogy, it’s because it’s about how a person lived, not how he or she died,” he adds. “The waiters, the chefs, the builders, the famous and the fierce, this incredible cast of characters created something so kinetic on the 107th floor of this building. This restaurant was destroyed 18 years ago, far enough away that it counts as history for so many too young to remember, but close enough to get firsthand accounts, and still so fresh in the minds of so many. Everything about this place reflects New York’s culture at a time we should never forget.”

And now we won’t. If you love this city (and if you don’t, better not tell me), grab this book. Thanks, Tom.

I am the author of ‘The Looks of Love: 50 Moments in Fashion That Inspired Romance’ and ‘100 Unforgettable Dresses.’ I was fashion director at InStyle Magazine and the New York Times Magazine. I’m also a restaurant critic, consultant and designer of The Hal Rubenstein Collection on HSN. Native New Yorker and pretty nice guy.

Source: The Secret History Of The Most Spectacular Restaurant In The World

“Windows on the World” was a landmark restaurant on the 107th floor of the World Trade Center. Martha Teichner reports on the search for its missing employees. (This report was from a DVD included with the tenth anniversary edition of the CBS News/Simon & Schuster book, “What We Saw: The Events of September 11, 2001, in Words, Pictures, and Video.”)

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Subway Just Made a Stunning Announcement That Will Change Everything You Think About Subway (and McDonald’s and Burger King, For That Matter)

If you’re interested in the impossible, let’s just say that it’s been an interesting week. First there was bad news at Burger King. Then, there was almost no news at all at McDonald’s.

But now, Subway might have the most important news of all.

First, you might know, thanks to reporting by my colleague Chris Matysczyk, about the surprising thing Burger King admitted this week — namely that it’s preparing its plant-based Whoppers “in the same broiler used for beef and chicken.”

Let’s just say hardcore no-meat-eaters aren’t exactly thrilled about that.

Meanwhile, there was just the faintest hint that McDonald’s might be getting on the meat-less meat bandwagon in the United States.

As my colleague Peter Economy reported, Impossible Foods is reportedly teaming up with a food supplier that works with McDonald’s — suggesting there might some kind of meatless meat coming to McDonald’s at some point in the future.

But now, like a dark horse contender (sorry, horrible analogy), Subway has raced to the front of the pack.

Starting next month, the world’s largest restaurant chain says it will be offering a meatless meatball sub, after teaming up with plant-based meat substitute company Beyond Meat.

I don’t know which will be more surprising to people: the idea of a meatless meatball sub, or the simple fact that Subway is so much bigger than McDonald’s.

Let’s take the second point first: The tale of the tape right now worldwide, or at least as of 2018, which is the most recent year available:

  • 42,431 Subway stores;
  • 37,855 McDonald’s restaurants; and
  • 13,000 Burger King restaurants.

It’s fascinating. If Subway were a TV show, it would be NCIS: extremely successful, even though it’s not exactly socially popular. It reminds me of how people failed to predict the electoral victory of President Trump.

But it’s also why, while the meatless meatball sub is just a test for now in about 685 of these Subway restaurants, Subway’s much larger size means it has a better chance of catching on more quickly than its smaller competitors.

I have no dog at all in the fight over meatless meat (sorry, another bad analogy). But I mean that I like to eat meat, but I also enjoy really vegetarian options.

Personally, I just don’t see the need to create a plant-based meat substitute designed to fool people into thinking they’re actually eating meat.

Even in places like Sweden, they apparently find that weird.

But if you’re betting on whether companies like Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat really have a long-term future, for now at least, I wouldn’t be watching McDonald’s or Burger King. I’d watch how the meatless meatball sub does at Subway.

 

By: Bill Murphy Jr.

www.billmurphyjr.com

@BillMurphyJr

Source: Subway Just Made a Stunning Announcement That Will Change Everything You Think About Subway (and McDonald’s and Burger King, For That Matter)

The World’s 50 Best Restaurants: French ‘Mirazur’ At The Top

Mirazur, a three-Michelin-starred restaurant in the resort town of Menton, on the French Riviera, has been awarded the coveted title of World’s Best Restaurant and Best Restaurant in Europe 2019. The other top positions were given to restaurant Noma , @nomacph, in Copenhagen, Denmark, and Asador Etxebarri in Atxondo, Spain.

The title was given to the French restaurant run by chef Mauro Colagreco, by the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2019 organization during an award ceremony sponsored by S.Pellegrino & Acqua Panna, held at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore on Tuesday, featuring star chefs from around the world.

This is the first time in the award’s 18-year history that a French restaurant has received the top prize. Mirazur took over the No.1 position from Osteria Francescana, in Modena, Italy. Mirazur appeared as No.3 in 2018 and No. 4 in 2017.

Osteria Francescana joined a new category created for former winners, the “best of the best” group, a sort of restaurant hall of fame. Included in the list are El Bulli, The French Laundry, The Fat Duck, Noma (in its original incarnation), El Celler de Can Roca and Eleven Madison Park.

In this year’s event which is considered the biggest night of the international culinary world, 26 countries from five continents won a place in the list of World’s Best 50.

The World’s 50 Best Restaurants has been ranking the top 100 fine dining destinations around the globe every year since 2002, with the winners chosen by a panel of more than 1,000 chefs, restaurateurs and food writers.

A week ago, ahead of the awards ceremony the World’s 50 Best Restaurants organization revealed the first cut of restaurants in this year’s special 120 winners list that included the restaurants placed from number 51 to 120 

Mirazur’s selection “is a testament to Chef Colagreco’s love of local produce, most of which is grown in the restaurant’s three-tiered garden just meters from the dining room, complemented by a stunning French Riviera backdrop,” explained the organizers.

“This year we are thrilled to see Mirazur claim the No.1 spot after rising through the ranks since making its debut on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list at No.35 in 2009, it’s been brilliant to witness its progress,” said William Drew, Director of Content for The World’s 50 Best Restaurants. “This has been a wonderful, progressive year for the list as a whole, with so many new entries from all corners of the globe.”

Spain got the biggest number, with seven restaurants in the World’s 50 Best, many of them in the Basque country. including three in the top 10: Asador Etxebarri (No.3); Mugaritz (No.7); and Disfrutar (No.9).

France has five restaurants in the top 50, including Arpège (No.8), Septime (No.15), Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athénée (No.16), Alléno Paris au Pavillon Ledoyen (No.25), and Mirazur.

The USA got second place in the number of restaurants with six in the list, including Cosme (No.23) in New York, which is helmed by The World’s Best Female Chef 2019, Daniela Soto-Innes, and two new entries: Atelier Crenn (No.35), and Benu (No.47), both in San Francisco, California.

This year Denmark has two at the top-five honors for the new incarnation of Noma (No.2) and Geranium (No.5), both in Copenhagen.

Peru also makes the top ten list with entries from Lima including Central (No.6), once again voted The Best Restaurant in South America, and Maido (No.10). Mexico claimed two spots in the upper echelons of the list: Pujol (No.12), which is named The Best Restaurant in North America, and Quintonil (No.24), both in Mexico City.

The UK, Italy, Japan, China, Thailand and Russia are also each represented with two restaurants on the list.

Alain Passard of Arpège in Paris, France (No.8), won the Chefs’ Choice Award, sponsored by Estrella Damm, voted on by the world’s leading chefs in the list and awarded to a peer who has made a significant impact to the culinary world in the past year.

The Art of Hospitality Award, sponsored by Legle, went to Tokyo’s Den (No.11). The restaurant is highly regarded for its holistic approach to service. Other Asia-based restaurants in the list include Gaggan (No.4), in Bangkok, which is closing next year, named The Best Restaurant in Asia, and Odette (No.18) from Singapore.

The Test Kitchen (No.44) from Cape Town is The Best Restaurant in Africa.

UK, which has seen its share of top 50 establishments drop from four to two.

Only four restaurants at least partially led by women — New York’s Cosme, Slovenia’s Hisa Franko, Colombia’s Leo in Bogota and Atelier Crenn — made the list of 50.

Here is the full list of the 50 best:

50. Schauenstein, Switzerland

49. Leo, Colombia

48. Ultraviolet, China

47. Benu, USA (San Francisco)

46. De Librije, Netherlands

45. Suhring, Thailand

44. The Test Kitchen, South Africa

43. Hof Van Cleve, Belgium

42. Belcanto, Portugal

41. The Chairman, Hong Kong

40. Tim Raue, Germany

39. A Casa do Porco, Brazil

38. Hisa Franko, Slovenia

37. Alinea, Chicago

36. Le Bernardin, USA (New York)

35. Atelier Crenn, USA (San Francisco)

34. Don Julio, Argentina

33. Lyle’s, United Kingdom

32. Nerua Guggenheim Bilbao, Spain

31. Le Calandre, Italy

30. Elkano, Spain

29. Piazza Duomo, Italy

28. Blue Hill at Stone Barns, USA (New York)

27. The Clove Club, United Kingdom

26. Borago, Chile

25. Pavillon Ledoyen, France

24. Quintonil, Mexico

23. Cosme, USA (New York)

22. Narisawa, Japan

21. Frantzen, Sweden

20. Tickets, Spain

19. Twins Garden, Russia

18. Odette, Singapore

17. Steirereck, Austria

16. Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athenee, France

15. Septime, France

14. Azurmendi, Spain

13. White Rabbit, Russia

12. Pujol, Mexico

13. Den, Japan

10. Maido, Peru

9. Disfrutar, Spain

8. L’Arpege, France

7. Mugaritz, San Sebastian

6. Central, Peru

5. Geranium, Denmark

4. Gaggan, Thailand

3. Asador Etxebarri, Spain

2. Noma, Denmark

1. Mirazur, France

Follow me on Twitter or LinkedIn.

I’m a dual Colombian-Luxembourgish freelance journalist, inveterate traveler and writer based in the world’s only Grand Duchy.

Source: The World’s 50 Best Restaurants: French ‘Mirazur’ At The Top

Top 10 Industry Secrets That Make You Buy More Food – Be Amazed

Be Amazed at these top 10 sneaky industry secrets that make you buy more food! Endorsement secrets – We all know that for years, food companies have paid celebrities to endorse their products. Think Justin Timberlake and McDonald’s, or Snoop Dogg and Hot Pockets. Fast food secrets – When it comes to using ingenious tricks to get you to buy more food, the fast food industry are the absolute masters.

They stop at nothing to make sure we’re always filling our faces with burgers, fries and nuggets. It’s a fact that sugar is addictive. Processing secrets – It’s not just sugar that’s addictive. There are all kinds of mysterious substances that we can get addicted to, and you can bet the food industry make sure our food is loaded with as much of them as possible. Restaurant secrets –

You probably think I’m being a bit harsh on the fast food industry here. Let me redress the balance. The guys at the other end of the spectrum, high-end restaurants, play tricks on us too. Why do you think they restaurants play classical music over the speakers? Research by the University of Leicester showed that classical music increases the amount of money people spend by more than 10%, compared to when there’s no music. Political secrets –

If they wanted to, governments could shut down a lot of the food industry’s murky practices. To stop that happening, big food companies spend a lot of money and effort playing politics. Health secrets – In today’s health-conscious times, food brands want you to think they’re good for you, so you’ll buy more of them. Unfortunately, when a food screams at you from the packet about how healthy it is, it isn’t always the case. Use-by date secrets

You’re hungry, but when you open the fridge, all that greets you are some random foodstuffs, and they look like they’ve been there a while. Colour secrets – Call me old-fashioned, but I like my food to be the right colour, and I’m not alone. Supermarket secrets – As much as the food industry likes to play with our food, its advertising and packaging to make sure we buy it, your supermarket is doing its best to manipulate you too. Brain manipulation secrets –

The food industry employs psychologists to work out how they can subliminally influence our minds, so we buy more product. Researchers in Belgium figured out that humans are drawn to glossy objects, because shiny and glossy surfaces make us think of water and our brains remind us that we need it to survive. As a result, soda companies make their bottles and cans glossy, with bubbles and dewy drips all over them.

 

 

 

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Cheapest Michelin Starred Meals In The World Revealed – Monica Houghton

 

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Michelin has long been considered the authority on fine dining. Chefs at the best restaurants around the world work hard to achieve Michelin star ratings. Food lovers often have Michelin star restaurants on their bucket list. Given Michelin stars are so coveted, you may be surprised that you don’t have to shell out thousands of dollars for a high-quality meal. In fact, you can enjoy delicious Michelin-star meals for under $50 around the world.Most foodies will spend a significant amount of time researching the most attractive and innovative meals. They stay on top of trends, restaurant openings, and new chefs on the scene…….

Read more: https://www.forbes.com/sites/monicahoughton/2018/09/25/cheapest-michelin-starred-meals-in-the-world-revealed/#385c6371c876

 

 

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AccorHotels Boosts Supply Chain Sustainability with 600 Urban Food Gardens – Olivia Minnock

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French global hospitality company, AccorHotels, is on the way to its goal of installing urban fruit and vegetable gardens at 1,000 hotels by 2020.

The group, which operates 4,500 locations around the world, has committed to making its supply chain more sustainable and environmentally-friendly by reducing food waste and transport emissions.

The company celebrated a milestone on Thursday, announcing it had installed the gardens in 600 of its locations. The gardens will supply fresh produce for use in AccorHotels’ bars and restaurants. This means 400 are set to be installed over the next two years.

The installation of these gardens ties in with overall company aims to boost food traceability, reduce food waste from its restaurants by 30% by 2020, and to reduce the environmental footprint of its produce supply chain. This forms part of the company’s Planet 21 sustainability strategy. In 2012, AccorHotels set targets for 2020 in the areas of eco-design, energy efficiency, water stewardship and sustainably sourced food.

 The gardens will be pesticide free, and as well as providing ingredients the company has pointed to their potential to improve biodiversity and air quality, reduce urban runoff (surface runoff of rainwater from buildings in urban areas) and urban heat islands (urban areas significantly warmer than their rural counterparts), as well as providing insulation for those buildings they are installed on top of.

Thomas Dubaere, Chief Operating Officer for Norther Europe at AccorHotels, has stated: “As a group that produces a lot of food for our guests across the world, it is vital that we play our part in reducing food waste and investing in sustainable food systems.

“Our hotels are encouraged to source local produce, reducing the environmental impact from their food purchases and providing outlets for farmers to sell their produce.”

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These Are the 10 Best Food Cities in the World, According to TripAdvisor

Image result for These Are the 10 Best Food Cities in the World, According to TripAdvisor

As food experiences become more important in travel, people are spending significant amounts of time researching what they’ll be eating before booking vacations. To track this trend, TripAdvisor gathered information on the top food cities in the world—that is, the tourist destinations where local cuisine is the biggest draw.

Rome took the number one spot, with another Italian city, Florence, coming in second. Third was Parisquelle surprise—and Barcelona and New Orleans rounded out the top five. The list included each city’s most-booked “food experience.” In Rome, that was a food tour of the Prati district; in Florence, it was a cooking class and market tour at a Tuscan farmhouse. (According to their data, food tours are the fastest growing experiences category on TripAdvisor based on amount spent, which increased 61% last year versus 2016.)

“Travelers are increasingly interested in getting local insight on their destination, and food tours and cooking classes a great way to do that,” said TripAdvisor spokesperson Laurel Greatrix, in a statement announcing the list. “Guides can be a great resource for finding hidden gems or local favorite spots, and can create an unforgettable part of your trip. Coming home with a local recipe or a new favorite restaurant is the best souvenir.”

As for methodology, the best food experiences were ranked using an algorithm that considered “bookings, traveler reviews, and traveler ratings.”

See the full list below of top food city alongside the most-booked food experiences.

1. Rome (Rome Food Tour by Sunset around Prati District)

2. Florence (Cooking Class and Lunch at a Tuscan Farmhouse with Local Market Tour from Florence)

3. Paris (Paris Food Tour: Taste of Montmartre)

4. Barcelona (Interactive Spanish Cooking Experience in Barcelona)

5. New Orleans (New Orleans Food Walking Tour of the French Quarter)

6. New York City (Best of Brooklyn Half-Day Food and Culture Tour)

7. Venice (Venice Food Tour: Cicchetti and Wine)

8. Madrid (Madrid Tapas and Wine Tasting Tour)

9. Tokyo (Tokyo by Night: Japanese Food Tour)

10. Bangkok (Bangkok Food Tour)

By: Maria Yagoda

April 23, 2018

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