A Winter's Foodie Eve

In the event your Thanksgiving feast tomorrow night doesn't keep you full until Monday (or even if you just feel like gorging yourself twice in one week), Lincoln Square wants to ply you with all of it's best culinary offerings this Monday 12/1 for the 15th Annual Winter’s Eve at Lincoln Square.

Photo credit: Filip Wolak for the Lincoln Square BID

From 6:00 to 8:30pm, 35 of the Upper West Side's best restaurants will line the sidewalks around Lincoln Square (from Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle, along Broadway between 62nd and 64th Streets and at Richard Tucker Park on Broadway between 65th and 66th Streets) to serve mouthwatering bites and small plates, hot drinks and hearty soups all at nominal costs.

The newest restaurants and eateries to participate this season include:

  • Gina la Fornarina: crispy focaccia robiola for $3 and porcini mushroom ravioli for $4
  • Tavern on the Green: fennel and oyster soup for $4 and cinnamon oatmeal raisin cookies for $1
  • Whole Foods Market Columbus Circle: local mulled hot apple cider with gingersnap cookies for $3
Other AINY favorites include:
  • Asiate: Smoked Chestnut Chowder with duck confit, pickled cherries and foie gras emulsion for $4
  • Bouchon Bakery: Chocolate Bouchon for $1
  • Telepan: Mushroom Bisque for $4 and Coconut Cupcakes for $1
  • Bar Boulud: Frenchie Burger Sliders for $4, Lobster Bisque for $4 and Duo of Macaroons for $3

The celebration begins (rain, snow or shine) at 5:30 pm with the Upper West Side’s Tree Lighting ceremony at Broadway and 63rd Street.  Food Tastings officially begin at 6:00 pm.


Better Than All The Rest

The best. It's what everyone strives to be, right? So would a celebration of the best be, well, the BEST thing ever? 

Join Thrillist in toasting to the Fest of the Best, a tasty event featuring the best of NYC restaurants in 2014. Participating restaurants include: Bacchanal, Blenheim, BLT Fish Shack, Blue Water Grill, Crave Fish Bar, Emily, French Louis, Margaux, Monarch Room, Randolph, and Seoul Chicken.

It's al going down ​on Saturday, ​December ​6th from 1-​4​ PM at Villian (50 N 3rd St between Kent and Wythe, Brooklyn). ​Samsung will be on hand to host a "Food Porn Lounge," complete with food stylists who will teach everyone how to properly style their #foodporn shots. Guests will additionally enjoy unlimited specialty cocktails provided by Grey Goose. At the end of the night, one restaurant will be crowned with the People's Choice Award for "Best of 2014."

Early bird tickets are available at this link for a discounted rate of $55 (for a limited time)​. General Admission tickets will then go on sale for $65.


Free Coffee To Keep You Shopping on Black Friday

With all the shopping you plan on doing this Black Friday, sleeping in is not an option. Lavazza wants to make sure you stay awake and wants to help you fight the effect of the copious amount of tryptophan you are bound to consume alongside your cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie the night before.

Starting on Friday, November 28 from 5:00 am to 5:00 pm and Saturday, November 29 from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm, the Lavazza mobile cafĂ© will be posted in the Meatpacking District and hand delivering their coffee from Lavazza branded Fiat 500’s to everyone in need of a pick me up. Tired shoppers in NYC will also be able to receive a complimentary coffee delivered right to their doorstep by tweeting @LavazzaUSA using the hashtag, #LavazzaDelivery.

For additional delivery details and product discount codes, follow @lavazzaUSA on Twitter.


Calling All Holiday Shoppers! (And Free Cocktail Lovers!)

Headed to the Renegade Craft Fair this weekend? More than 200 indie vendors will be hawking their handmade wares at the Metropolitan Pavilion (125 W 18th St) on November 15 and 16 and it's never too early to begin holiday shopping!

Even better, when your feet get tired and you begin craving a complimentary cocktail, head on over to the Ace Hotel on Saturday 11/15 from 6:30-8:30 pm for the official afterparty sponsored by Flavorpill and Sprout by HP.

Make Snack Time Awesome

It's 3pm. You're turkey sandwich has already been digested but you're still hours away from your steak dinner at Benjamin's. Your stomach is growling. You have two options: spoil your dinner with a sugary purchase from the vending machine, or reach into your desk drawer for a healthy, filling snack.

Naturebox was created to bridge the gap between lunch and dinner (or breakfast and lunch for that matter!) while still keeping your diet wholesome and delicious. I was recently invited to try a monthly subscription box full of fall flavor and here is what I got:

How my box looked when it first arrived

I was pleased with the packaging, as the cardboard box ensured that my fragile snacks wouldn't be crushed or crumbled in the shipping process. I also appreciated the slip of paper explaining all about my different snacks.

As a fall-flavor nut, I was super appreciative of the thought that went into my box. First up were the apple pie oat clusters. Think of these as a cross between your favorite crunchy granola and a sweet, crisp apple. I definitely appreciated the cranberries also!

Apple pie oat clusters
Next up were the praline pumpkin seeds. I could eat these by the handful so I had to be careful to portion them out instead of continually shoving my hand in the bag. I mostly ate these on their own, but they would be great in salads! A nice mix of sweet and savory.

Praline pumpkin seeds
The pumpkin spice nom noms were, well...nommy! This snack is a limited edition (through December only) based on Naturebox's well-liked blueberry, peanut butter and dark cocoa varieties. Think of it as a healthier cookie.

Pumpkin spice nom noms

The harvest rice sticks (also limited edition--through November) were the first of my snacks to disappear. They had the perfect amount of salt and a great crunch (think Fritos). I also loved the bits of puffed wild rice that collected at the bottom of the bag.

Harvest rice sticks

What the rice sticks were salty, the cranberry pepita crisps were sweet. I'll liken these to a fall-flavored Stacy's pita chip, except the pepitas gave the crisp more texture, which I loved. These would be good on their own or dipped in hummus or even a sweet dip.

Cranberry pepita crisps

Naturebox starts at $19.95 a month for 5 full-size snacks (including shipping), and discounts are available if you commit to several months up front. It's a great deal if you like to snack healthy, and I love the convenience of having something tasty and wholesome at my desk when I get a craving. If you'd like to see if Naturebox is right for you, click here for a free trial or $10 off your first box!

Naturebox provided me with this box free of charge but all opinions listed here are my own.


Free Indoor Cycling Classes at Peloton Next Week

Ever since joining ClassPass, I've become a bit of a fitness class nut. It's like I can't workout without at least 4 other people sweating alongside me and a peppy, muscly, designer fitness clothing-clad instructor telling me exactly what to do. But I'm perfectly ok with that. 

After a couple of months of this craziness for 5-6 times a week, I've definitely discovered "favorite" studios, which I visit as much as they will possibly let me (3 times a month if you were interested). Peloton Cycle is one of them. Their patented belt-based bikes will give you a 100 times smoother ride than the typical chain-based bikes installed at every other indoor cycle studio. They are also equipped with super high-tech screens that display your speed, resistance, and position on the class leader-board (extra motivation for me!). Plus the facility is immaculate and you get free Jack's coffee and a piece of fruit after every class. 

Peloton announced today that they have teamed up with the Garmin-Sharp Pro Cycling Team to bring you a full day of free special rides coached by Team Garmin-Sharp pros Alex Howes and Tom Danielson on Wednesday, November 12th.

Catch a ride with Team Garmin and Peloton at any of the times below: 

• 8:15 a.m. - Alex Howes (45 min) 
• 10:30 a.m. - Alex Howes (45 min)  
• 6:30 p.m. - Tom Danielson (45 min) 
• 8:30 p.m. - Tom Danielson (45 min)

Immediately following each class, Alex and Tom will have autograph signing sessions in the Peloton lounge. To sign up for these complimentary rides, email teamgarminsharp@pelotoncycle.com with your name and desired ride time. Don't delay, I'm sure these spots will fill up fast!


AWESOME ALERT: Free Workout Class and Outfit

Fitness wear brand Sweaty Betty, known for their fun and flirty printed leggings, is pairing up with modelFIT (212 Bowery, 2nd Floor) for an epic event on Thursday November 20.

When you sign up (FOR FREE!) you not only get to sample one of modelFIT's much talked about body sculpting circuit classes (because don't we all want to look like a model?), but you also get to take a full outfit from Sweaty Betty home with you. Free treats and juices too. Say what?!?! Yes, I said it. Now go sign up (click on the events tab for more info). Several classes are available, but as you can imagine, spots are extremely limited.