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Breakfast at Buvette

Rarely has there been a time in last 5 years or so, that I or we have not had a breakfast at Buvette if we are in NYC.  I have had countless memorable meals there with friends as well as have dined solo when a quick trip into the city for biz calls.  Yesterday it was with our friend CoCo from Portland who was also walking the show buying for her shop.  It is always fun to see this incredibly special eatery through new eyes.
Buvette opens at 8 in the morning and serves continuously throughout the day, closing at 2 in the morning.  7 days a week.  So really anytime you are hungry, it is open.  They don’t take reservations and the space is petite, but I have never ever waiting very long to get a table.  Actually, I rarely have ever had to wait.  

Yet the space is always busting with stylish New Yorkers, so people watching is a delight.  The food, out of this world.  Chef Jody Williams has a way of turning everything into something sublime.  Whether it be a meal or a space.  
Even the planters outside are divine.  No detail has been missed.  You feel transported to a slower time, with a bit of Paris thrown in.  Both of those feelings rate pretty high in my book, especially when in the city where all moves at lightening speed.  It is always such a treat to just ‘be’ there.



Via Carota

20150408-074310.jpg This is what happens when I forget about something I really want to write about and also how quickly time flies. I had such great intentions of writing this post shortly after I dined at Via Carota on our last trip back East. Then time passes and I realize I have forgotten to write about this gem. Today is the day. Lucky for us, it will be around a good long while, so my tardy post is not really a worry.

Via Carota is the new restaurant that was created by Jody Williams of Buvette fame along with her partner in life, Rita Sodi, of I Sodi fame. To say I was in heaven when I walked in the door is an understatement. The space just feels good. Jody is a master at creating rooms that make you feel comforted & welcome. I actually was feeling a tad under the weather that night, but I mustered all my energy as I just could not wait until the next trip to enjoy a meal there. I went solo and sat up at the bar, which was a perfect perch for taking in every glorious detail. The happy energy in the room by happy diners was palpable. Walking and buying at a show can be so draining as it is a non-stop day of buying/talking with folks, that I just soaked up being alone and let the experience of being there and not really talking and just enjoying the food & environment take center stage. Rita is known for her sublime Italian fare, combined with Jody’s attention to simplicity of flavors at Buvette. Mix the two together and the meal and presentation are flawless. The Meyer lemon risotto tasting like Meyer lemons and perfectly cooked. The citrus salad with shaved red onions and black olives just so pure in their flavor with just the lightest dressing of oil. Even the bread was creatively presented stacked on a small vintage plate topped with extraordinary olive oil. Add a glass of dry white wine and it made me feel like I was sitting in a little bistro in Italy on a sunny day, where in truth, it was freezing cold outside and snowing. The meal and the experience transported me. If you get a chance to eat at Via Carota when you are in NYC, do. You will be so happy you did. It is right down the street from Buvette on Grove. They don’t take reservations, so go as a small group, twosome, or solo and sit up at the bar. I am smiling quite contently as I type this as the thought of it all washes over me. This is what a stellar meal/dining experience does–it should stay with you and create a memorable memory.



Rosemary Potato Chips

20150212-042853.jpg These potato chips are a ‘take’ on a recipe from the glorious Buvette cookbook. A spin our friend Catherine so cleverly thought of to infuse chips with rosemary without having to actually make potato chips from scratch. Simply chop up a good amount of rosemary quite fine. Layer the best store bought potato chips you can find onto a baking sheet or sheets. Sprinkle said finely chopped rosemary over the top of the chips. Put into a 300 degree oven for 20 minutes. Your kitchen will smell divine during this process. Gently mix things around at the 10 minute point. When done put in a pretty bowl. Serve with cocktails or Champagne for a high/low mix that will knock your socks off. It will be the first thing to go at your next party or gathering. A short-cut that is so simple yet so tasty. I whipped up a batch for our cocktail party the other evening and they were the perfect thing to have out while folks waited for their drink to me made.



Buvette: the pleasure of good food

20140619-063922.jpg By now you have probably clued into the fact that if I really like something, I REALLY like/love something quite a bit. Which also goes hand in hand with sharing that love with you. I have written much about how much I like/love/admire Buvette in New York. The eatery where I have had near out of body experiences not only from the food but also the environment. It is one of my happy places in the city that I frequent on nearly every visit. So you can imagine my glee when I found out awhile back that the chef and owner, Jody Williams, was working on a book. Buvette: the pleasure of good food, arrived yesterday at Watson Kennedy and I did a little jump for joy. Now I get to feel that Buvette ‘feel’ in our own home cooking up some of their signature dishes. Rarely do I sit with a glass of wine and just read a cookbook, but that is what I did last evening. Beautifully shot, the images transport you right to the very place, as well as make you incredibly hungry. As Jody writes, “Assembling this book has been an opportunity to reflect on the inspirations I’ve had in so many different kitchens around the world with so many people. Turning this all into food that can easily be made and served at home was a refreshingly easy translation as all of my cooking is simple, handmade, and straightforward. Buvette is more than a place; it’s also a feeling and an idea. It’s a way to cook, entertain, and live. It’s a recipe for living more meaningfully.”




Buvette Paris in Bon Appétit

20140524-073509.jpg I’m catching up on reading this Holiday week-end, and just delighted to read about and see all the great visual & coverage the new Buvette in Paris received.


20140524-073709.jpg I have written much of my love of Buvette in New York, so it is so interesting & exciting to see images of how she recreated the magic of the eatery in Paris too. Sure enough, she did! Chef/owner Jody Williams not only creates brilliantly simple/refined/rustic food, she also creates brilliantly layered and oh so stylish spaces. She takes a classic and puts her own twist on it–both in her food and her interiors. You just feel good in the space eating good food. Really as simple as that. Now I can’t wait for a Paris trip to try her new establishment!




Fresh Tuna Salad Nicoise

20131111-070644.jpg I have wanted to try and recreate this Niçoise salad since I had it last June at Buvette. Last night was the night. I have such fond memories of enjoying it with a glass of rosé, still a bit high from the excitement of seeing Hawthorne in person for the first time. I had flown to see the house and confirm our offer we had made from photos a few days before. It was such an exciting/stressful/joyous time and I only had a few hours before my flight back to Seattle, so I headed to Buvette for a little comfort food. This is a composed salad in a bowl, with tons of yummy/healthy things added. This is not from their recipe, but rather how I remembered it. Pretty darn close, pretty darn tasty. This serves 2, but ever so easy to make for many too.

In a small pot of water add 2 to 3 eggs and let water heat to boil, then turn off. Let sit for 15 minutes. You are wanting hard boiled eggs. Once done, take the eggs out to cool. Set aside.

In a large pot of boiling salted water add green beans and cook for 3 to 5 minutes. When done, take them out and place in a bowl to cool. In that same pot of boiling water, now add quartered small Yukon gold potatoes that you have peeled. Let cook for 15 minutes or until done. Also set aside to cool adding salt & pepper first.

The Vashon Thriftway so often has stellar fresh tuna. The Buvette version I am pretty sure was top of the line canned, truly, either is fine. Olive oil and salt & pepper your fresh tuna. Put in a very hot non-stick pan, cooking for 2-3 minutes a side. Once done, take out of pan and put on a plate and cover with aluminum foil to rest.

Cut a cucumber in half, scooping out the seeds and discarding them. Cut cucumber into small bite sized pieces. Cut pitted olives of your choice in half. I used Kalamata. Cut small cherry tomatoes in half and salt. I forgot a bunch of radishes I had bought the day before at the Market that I had taken out of the fridge and are currently sitting on the counter in town. Arghhh. These would have been a lovely addition too.

Make a simple vinaigrette.
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 lemon, juiced
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Whisk in the EVOO to the rest of the ingredients in a bowl.

In a large bowl, add half of the vinaigrette and then add mixed salad greens of your choice. Toss together. Add more dressing if needed. With the remaining, toss the potatoes with it to coat. Add the greens to 2 bowls. Add each component side by side, creating a composed salad in the bowl. Lastly, break up tuna with your hands into small pieces creating your last grouping in the bowl.

Seems like quite a few steps, but trust me, once you take your first bite, you will have forgotten the amount of work you put in.




A Perfect Beginning

20131109-063515.jpg I am still spinning a bit from our 48 hour NYC trip. It was the perfect kick-off to my 50th birthday festivities! It was straight back to work yesterday and we had an event to attend last eve, so I am now just wrapping my head around looking thru the photos. I thought this post could be about the itinerary and why/how we chose the things we did to do in such a short amount of time. This will be a bit of stream of consciousness, but I am so often told by readers that they love the suggestions from trips. So here goes. The above Filson rolling bag just right for a short trip. We all did carry-on luggage so that saved time and dough right from the start.

20131109-064226.jpg We wanted to stay at an iconic/classic hotel. The Waldorf Astoria fit the bill. In spades. Hotels for whatever reason could not guarantee that our rooms would be together if we all stayed in separate rooms, so we decided to go the suite route. I called around to many places directly and was not having any luck. TPS said I should try searching on Expedia, which I have never used. I now highly recommend it! We booked it for quite a bit less than what suites go for in NYC. It is a gloriously grand hotel.


20131109-064909.jpg We made as many of our dining reservations in advance, which I also highly recommend. The above from our first evening. Dinner at Prune. I am still dreaming about it. They gave us a recipe that I will try and write about in the coming weeks. We also found out that the owner Gabrielle is working on a cookbook. I am sure it will be amazing. Amazing.


20131109-065316.jpg Breakfast at Buvette began our first morning. Yes, yes, I know I gush about this place. But it is so warranted. Once again, we had a meal that was out of this world. Simple ingredients, prepared simply, that will knock your socks off. They do not take reservations, so I find going early for breakfast easiest to grab an open table without a wait.


20131109-065810.jpg I am a big lover of taxis. You get to look around at the sights while getting from A to B. We took taxis a bunch, but also walked a bunch. After breakfast we walked from Buvette to the High Line, which Catherine, Rise’ nor Linda had been too. It is so fun seeing the joy that it brings experiencing it for the first time. A trip to the city, a walk of the High Line is a must. Such a creative, highly visual use of space.



20131109-070355.jpg I had heard so many good things about a new place, so I was dying to check it out. After our High Line walk, we headed to Tipsy Parson on 9th Avenue in Chelsea. What a delight. It is very New Orleans menu based, which is fantastic. The space, so incredibly cool. Tons of John Derian’s work, which you all know I adore.

20131109-070718.jpg Lisa Birnbach lives in the area, so we made a quick stop to say hello. Lisa is the author of The Official Preppy Handbook as well as True Prep. She is also a Watson Kennedy customer. Lisa was so kind and wrote a quote that was used for my upcoming book. She has an amazing sense of humor and had us laughing the entire time. We then hopped into a cab and headed to the offices of my publisher, Sterling. John, my editor, had printed out the first full spread of my book! After getting it from John, we walked to Les Halles and had a celebratory bottle of Veuve Clicquot and looked over each page. It was a very special moment, indeed. Another bit of a walk combined with a cab ride got us back to the hotel for a little refresh and outfit change for dinner.

20131109-071407.jpg Drinks at Bemelmans Bar at The Carlyle and then a very healthy meander down Madison Avenue for a little window shopping before dinner at The Lambs Club. There I was surprised with my best friend from college, Devin, showing up shortly after we arrived to join us for dinner. I can’t even begin to tell you how much laughter occurred at that dining table. The best!

20131109-071915.jpg Needless to say, we all slept incredibly well after a very full day. Up the next morning and we headed back to Madison Avenue for a little shopping. Then to MoMA for a little art, then to Bergdorf Goodman for a little more shopping and a late lunch. The Holiday windows were in progress, so we did not get to see the finished product. But it was fun to see them actually installing components to the windows. You know I love a good window display! Then it was off to the airport. What an incredibly special trip, made with 3 people who mean the world to me. As I approach fifty (or as I like to say, fiddy) on the 23rd, I am just so overcome with love by those that surround me. I have always been, and feel we all need to be, so grateful/thankful for what we have and what we are given. I truly am.

Sending much, much love. Ted



The Comfort of a Place


20130531-074909.jpg I had to make a quick trip to New York for a meeting yesterday morning. With little time, well actually no time, to plan, I just kind of went on overdrive in the state that we will hopefully soon call our very part-time home. After the plane landed, I hopped the train from Newark into the city. Once at Penn Station, I used my fab Uber app to locate the nearest car in the area to pick me up and take me to Prune. For those of you who have read the blog posts over the past 2 years, you know Prune is a place I hold in the highest regard. I feel so at home in the space. Kind of how I hope friends feel when they are in our home. A place of great familiarity and comfort. I had a sublime meal. Just like always. As well as a lovely chat with the owner Gabrielle. A perfect way to enter the world of New York City. Food, and the remarkable places that create it, makes me feel incredibly comfortable in a place. The next day, before I headed back to the airport I made my way to Buvette. Yes, this was very unexpected, as TPS & I, along with Bailey, had such a memorable breakfast there just last Thursday. This is also a place I feel immensely comfortable in. We so often hear at the shops from customers from both far and near, how much they just like being in the spaces. They love how they feel when they are there. This, of course, is one of the greatest compliments I can paid. Buvette evokes that very same feeling in me. Every detail, and I mean every detail, has been thought through. Attention to great detail takes much work, but the reward is so great. Add to that amazing vibe one seriously glorious meal, and shortly after I was back up in the sky on my way home to Seattle.

It was an up at 5 morning, with many tasks for the day. Fingers crossed–I hope to fill you in on all the details soon…

I am actually tapping this out on the airplane as I look down upon the clouds, saving it on my phone in my notes. Ahhhh, technology. I rarely write a post in advance, but I had a feeling I was going to be quite tired on Friday morning…




NYC Love

20130523-090604.jpg We fly home this evening, so it is our last day here in New York. Breakfast at Buvette in a bit, then meandering around the West Village. Funny how this has become a routine, but this is what we almost always do on our last day in this city that has an incredibly special place in my heart. Thank you for following along these last 11 days. It has been a memorable trip, and so lovely knowing you all are with me in some way.
XX, Ted



Buvette Love

20120201-053058.jpg My oh my, was I in culinary & design detail heaven yesterday morning. Those are not 2 things that always go hand and hand, but at Buvette, our new favorite find in NYC, they most certainly do.

20120201-053359.jpg In the West Village, at 42 Grove Street, between Bleecker & Bedford, this tiny space is big on flavor and design detail. Truly, I was a bit weak in the knees at how good both aspects were.

20120201-053812.jpg We arrived a minute or so before 8 when they open during the week for breakfast. They were incredibly gracious about having us come in and finding a spot even before they were really open. It was fun to watch the theater of it all unfold, as a new day began in the beyond charming space. Water was poured from cool vintage looking apothecary bottles. I took a few photos for the post today, and then the culinary experience began.

20120201-054228.jpg As most of you know, I love small, intimate, cozy spaces. Buvette is all of that in spades. The tiny table becomes this artful tableau once drink and food starts arriving.



20120201-054540.jpg There was not one bite, morsel or sip that did not satisfy completely. Dishes are delivered on vintage compotes, so the food is at varying heights at your table. Owner/chef Jody Williams arrived as we were enjoying our meal. Cheers to you Jody for creating a culinary work of art! We love frequenting eateries that are individually owned, where you really see the passion of the owner shine. Buvette is that type of place. I look so forward to frequenting it on each of my visits.