Summer Breeze Gift Basket

Are you going to be a house guest this summer? Why just take flowers or a bottle of wine when you can bring a customized “Summer Breeze” gift in a reusable planter? Granted, most of us may not be visiting Provence or a place with lavender and jasmine fields blowing in the background. However, herbal…read more

Getting to Know Your Wine Terminology

Imagine this: you’re invited to a wine tasting event by your best friend, significant other, or a family member. Just as you begin to picture yourself enjoying the evening by sampling different vintages and blends, a strike of panic hits as you realize that, while you enjoy the occasional glass of wine, you aren’t overly…read more

How to Use A Chimney Starter

I’ve been in Atlanta visiting my mom this week. We’re grilling tonight so I decided to teach her how to use a chimney starter to get a charcoal grill started without lighter fluid. She didn’t have a chimney starter so I went to the local Lowes Home Improvement Store to pick one up for her.…read more

Chrissy Teigen’s Spicy Clams and Pasta

Although I have been making this dish for years, this is the best recipe I have run across to date. It is really flavorful, unlike some versions that have too much or too little sauce, and has the right proportions of everything, especially the pepper! You can substitute Littleneck clams for the Manila clams; because…read more

Summertime and the Living is Easy

A Summer Living Recipe and Wine Pick Those of you who know me well know how much I love music. I frequently speak in musical metaphors. I also love to cook and put my own spin on traditional recipes. I call this dish “Hot Buttered Soul,” as a tribute to Isaac Hayes Some time ago, I…read more

Blackberry Lemonade

The blacker the berry, the sweeter the juice… Whoever first said this was really onto something. It’s true that the deeper colored foods tend to have more flavor and nutritional value. Think of sweet potatoes versus white potatoes, brown rice versus white rice and dark leafy greens like collards and kale, compared to iceberg lettuce.…read more

Groovy Gazpacho

It’s warming up outside and everyone is starting to think about summer. When the temperature goes up, we have to be careful to stay hydrated. One of my favorite summer snacks to hydrate and provide sustenance, without slowing me down is Gazpacho. I sometimes like to have a bowl before a workout. It gives me…read more

How to Shuck Oysters on the Half Shell at Home

I love oysters, and one of my favorite summer snacks is oysters on the half shell with a crisp, “minerally” white wine like Muscadet, Dry Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc or unoaked French Chardonnay. If you enjoy oysters on the half shell or just like to use the freshest most flavorful oysters possible for your fried oysters or…read more

Daddy’s Fried Chicken

Fried chicken is a comfort food that reminds me of my daddy. It’s his favorite meal, and as a bachelor he learned to perfect it. Daddy likes fried chicken so much that his friends nicknamed him “Yardbird.” Here’s how to make Daddy’s famous fried chicken: What you will need: A large skillet or Dutch oven 2…read more

Quick Salmon

A quick dinner of salmon seasoned with salt, pepper, fresh garlic, dried cilantro, olive oil and lemon juice. Did you know that salmon is a “brain” food? …read more

Meatballs and Montepulciano

I finally got my hands on some of Joe Campanale’s Annona Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo, a wine I first tried at dell’Anima in the West Village several years ago and then again at L’Apicio Restaurant in the East Village last December. Cerasuolo d’Abruzzo is a deep-colored hearty rosé wine for people who like red wine but want something a little different. Not to…read more