Tag Archive | Fabio Viviani

Fall Editor Showcase Highlights Cooking and Entertaining for the Holidays!

Full Room View
All Photos By Gail

In anticipation of an extra festive holiday season — which always seems to arrive sooner than you expect — The fall Editor Showcase food and networking event took place on October 15th at the New York Marriott Marquis. This fun and well-attended event was packed with tastings and cooking demonstrations for over two dozen brands of food and kitchen equipment to make sure everyone is fully prepared for all of the parties and food-centric events that will kick off with Thanksgiving in just two short weeks!

Here are some of our favorite exhibitors from the show!

Farm Rich Snacks

Farm Rich makes a line of frozen snacks that you just pop in your oven to create amazing hot hors d’oeuvres that will win you fans every time. We fell in love especially with their Chili Cheese Bites (filed with real chili, not just chili peppers), which are just insane. Their Toasted Raviolis were also a huge hit with the crowd.

Athens Mini Fillo Shells Box

Athens Mini Fillo Shells are a product that every party hostess will want to have on hand for easy preparation of both sweet and savory snacks! The shells come fully pre-baked and all you need to do is add your favorite filling and heat. So convenient!

Athens Mini Fillo Shells

Of course, Athens had an assortment of prepared mini quiches and tiny cheese cakes, as well as other taste tantalizing surprises, to give use more clever ideas of how to serve these shells at your next party! So yummy!

Legends from Europe SignageLegends from Europe Display

Legends from Europe is a campaign uniting five authentic PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) products from Europe, including Prosciutto di Parma and Parmigianio Reggiano — two of our favorite things to eat! Legends from Europe offered show attendees the chance to sample a full spread of snacks featuring its products and also had recipes on hand so you can make these delicacies at home.

Bertolli Olive Oil Display

Bertoli Olive Oil has grown to become the world’s Number 1 Olive Oil brand. Bertoli offers a variety of oils which we were able to sample brushed on delicious Italian bread. Bertoli had something else going for them at their booth which we found hard to resists: Chef Fabio Viviani!

Gail and Fabio

What a charmer he is! Bertoli were very smart to align with Fabio because I’d buy whatever he is selling.

Success Rice Display

Success brand boil-in-bag rice has been a best selling brand for years and it tastes great in a variety of recipes, samples of which they had on hand at Editor Showcase.

Success Rice Pudding

Bourbon Raisin Rice Pudding made with Success Basmati Rice is super easy to prepare and tastes rich, sweet and exotic.

Success Jasmine Rice Balls

Success Jasmine Rice is used in this exceptional recipe for Laotian Nam Khao (Crispy Rice Balls), which were devoured by attendees very quickly!

Alouette Cheese Spreads

Alouette Cheese Spreads had a couple of exciting new “Bold” flavors to preview including Wasabi Cheddar, which is just mind blowing, and Buffalo Cheddar — which is sure to become a favorite as well! While these new flavors will not be available until February, 2014, there are tons of other flavors for you to try in time for the holidays. Alouette Cheese Spreads are convenient for entertaining on the fly, and come in resealable tubs which keep them fresh.

Alouette Cheese Spreads Display

If you want to get super fancy you can even hollow out a pineapple and impress your guests by serving your favorite dip made from Alouette Cheese Spreads right from the pineapple! Crazy!

Pasta Month Display

Just look at this lovely display courtesy of the National Pasta Association. Nobody loves pasta more than I do, so I was way into all of the tasty and healthy recipes they had to give out as part of their Pasta Fits promotion, such as this yummy past salad picture below.

Pasta Month Salad

Ninja BlenderNinja Blender in Action

If you enjoy making your own healthy juices, smoothies and sauces — or just like to cook a lot of recipes that require a first rate food processor — then you will not be able to live much longer without a Ninja Ultima Blender. The Ninja distinguishes itself by the multi-blade core that does a superior job of chopping and pureeing foods. Check out the side by side comparison above: Some Other Brand on the left, Ninja on the right. Behold the clear winner in blended results.  Ninja!

Cooking Plan It Cookie

Cooking Planit was giving out these cookies as well as bad ass magnetic photo recipe cards to promote this super cool website and mobile app that provides home cooks with step-by-step instructions to create full meals. They call it a “GPS for the Kitchen” – what an exciting and fun idea! Visit Cooking Planit at This Link!

Mann's Veggie Mac N Cheese

Okay, here is product that I would literally eat all the time: Mann’s Sunny Shores Veggie Mac-N-Cheese, which contains everything you need to make a fine dinner of Macaroni and Cheese with Broccoli in one bag! Also, please note above they it comes in a bacon variety, ‘Nuff said.

Sartori Cheese Gift Bag

Last, but not least, I would like to give an extra special shout out to Sartori Cheese, producers of artisan and premium cheese for seven decades! Sartori makes the most delicious cheese you have ever tasted — and I have tasted a lot of cheese. They also gifted me with this coveted swag of a reusable insulted canvas tote filled with five different varieties of their awesome cheese plus a set of wine glass charms! Sartori Cheese!

As always, Thanks to Formulatin PR for the Hook Up!

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Gail Meets Chef Fabio Viviani!

Gail and Fabio Viviani

When you’re as dedicated of a Foodie as me, Celebrity Chefs are the new Rock Stars — and from Eric Ripert and Anthony Bourdain to Jonathan Waxman and Rocco Dispirito, I have met many of the best. But no previous personal collision with culinary genius has matched the heights squee-worthiness attained by my recent chance meeting with former Top Chef contestant and all around Fabulous uber Hottie, Fabio Viviani! I love him! Fabio happened to be shilling for Bertoli Olive Oil at last week’s Editor’s Showcase at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square, and he was just as charming and charismatic in person as he is on TV. Fabio Viviani!

Bertoli Olive Oil Display
Bertoli Olive Oil Booth Display

Fabio was gracious enough to pose for a photo of us together and, as you can see by my face, this was a moment I will not soon be forgetting. But it wasn’t actually the first time I had seen Fabio out and about while I was on a Food blog related excursion. Two years ago, I was having drinks and snacks Upstairs at The Kimberly Hotel when I noticed a guy sitting at the table directly behind me who had what looked like a Sock Monkey clearly visible in his rear jeans pocket. Yes, I just typed that. A split second after my initial observation, Sock Monkey guy turned his head and I immediately recognized him as Fabio, who is one of my favorite contestants from Top Chef, ever.

I was just emboldened enough by alcohol consumption to have said something pleasantly confrontational to Fabio at that time, but his party was made up exclusively of very attractive women who were all clearly fawning over him, so the timing was a bit off. Minutes later, he was gone and I thought I had missed my chance, so thank you Bertoli Olive Oil and Editors Showcase for providing my a true fan moment with Fabio. And thanks Fabio, for your delicious food and just being you.

Upstairs at the Kimberly Hotel: Much More than Just Rooftop Cocktails

When you get right down to it, there are woefully too few days in a New York City summer where the planets align to create weather that’s both seductively warm and miraculously free from precipitation, making for the perfect scenario for a rooftop dining experience. We enjoyed just such a cosmic occurrence one evening last week, when we were fortunate enough to snag a prime table at Upstairs, the luxurious rooftop restaurant and bar located on the Penthouse level of the Kimberly Suites Hotel. Unlike similar venues that may flaunt coveted Rooftop views of our fair Metropolis while phoning it in when it comes to service and consumables, Upstairs backs up its bragging rights with an impressive menu of gourmet eats and signature summer cocktails that will add significant value to your evening of memorable views.

With its retractable glass ceilings and walls (just in case the clouds roll in) and mix of old Hollywood meets Modern Penthouse Garden design, Upstairs is a place to see and be seen. We spotted the very handsome Fabio Viviani of Top Chef Fame seated with a lively group at a table close by, and it’s likely that other local celebrities might have been mingling in the considerable crowd. But make no mistake, the atmosphere is chill and attitudes are checked at the door. People come here to relax, unwind and enjoy some seriously delicious food.

Truffled Mac & Cheese (All Food Photos By Anne Raso)

We brought our heartiest mid-week appetites which were satisfied by orders of rich and fragrant Truffled Macaroni & Cheese baked en casserole to a golden hue ($12), and Crispy Baby Artichokes tossed with fresh grated Parmesan Cheese and Fresh Lemon ($14).

Crispy Baby Artichokes

Curious to sample as many dishes as possible, we added Spiced Duck Cigars (heavy on the curry and hot pepper) with Pomegranate Dipping Sauce ($13) and a trio of juicy Kobe Beef Sliders topped with Cheddar, Tomato & Pickle ($15) complimented by a side of extraordinary Crispy French Fries accompanied by a dish of luscious Chipotle Mayonnaise ($7).

Spiced Duck Cigars are Studded with Toasted Pistachio Nuts

Kobe Beef Sliders: Tiny But Tasty!

For seafood lovers, Upstairs offers a wide offering of delectable dishes including a generous portion of Yellowfin Tuna Tartare with Spicy Avocado and Ginger Olive Oil ($18), Lump Crab Cakes with Ginger-Mango Salsa and Spicy Chili Sauce ($17), crowd-pleasing Crispy Calamari ($15) and the popular Lobster Sliders ($21), among other selections. We can enthusiastically recommend everything mentioned here. Order several small plates and you’ll find that all appetizers are large enough to share between two people, leaving you comfortably stuffed.

Strawberry Souffle

And stuffed we were – yet we couldn’t resist being tempted by dessert. We sampled the petite Strawberry Soufflé with Whipped Cream and Tarragon Strawberry Salad ($11) – which is the perfect size to top off your meal, even if you think you can’t swallow one more bite.

Caramel Ice Cream Sandwich

We also indulged in the Caramel Ice Cream Sandwich (Vanilla/Caramel parfait Ice Cream between Two Chocolate Wafers) served with a side of Salted Vanilla Carmel sauce for drizzling on top and Fresh Blackberries ($11). Both were delicious and unique. Service at Upstairs is attentive and gracious. Our waitress stopped back at our table often to make sure we had everything we needed, and even Executive Chef David Andrews (formerly of Gotham Bar & Grill) stopped by for a brief chat about his delicious creations. Having worked with Chefs such as Marcus Samuelson and Angelo Sosa, he is very down-to-earth when he talks about his food, and he has the most adorable, subtle Tennessee accent. The impeccable combination of food, service and location make Upstairs an ideal destination to impress your out of town friends with a taste New York hospitality, but it’s a self-indulgent retreat for locals as well; because, really, where else can you take in the best views of the Chrysler building in town while sipping a cocktail named after Yoko Ono?

Upstairs is located at the Kimberly Hotel, Penthouse Level 145 East 50th Street (East of Lexington) in New York City (Take the 6 Train to Lexington and 51st Street). For reservations please phone 212-888-1220. Hours are Monday – Wednesday 5 PM-1 AM, Thursday – Friday 5 PM-2 AM, Saturday Brunch served from 11:30 AM-3:30 PM, (Upstairs will be open 6 PM-2 AM, Sunday Brunch served from 11:30 AM-3:30 PM, (Upstairs will be open 3:30 PM-11 PM). Proper Attire is Required, so dress to impress and leave the sneakers and cut-offs at home!