See This Film in Theaters This Week, and Your First Round is on Us!*
A Place At The Table is an important film to all of us here at Riverpark, and we’d like to invite you to see it in theaters (to help keep it in theaters!).
A Place At The Table is an engrossing new film about an issue that impacts us all, even those fortunate enough to never know hunger. It takes audiences on a riveting journey that will change forever how you think about democracy, and show how we can end hunger quickly and effectively in America, forever.
For NYC listings, click here! (The film is also available on iTunes and On Demand; www.takepart.com/table).
*See the film before 3/10/13, bring in your ticket stub, and your first round of beer, glass of wine or specialty cocktail is on us! (Through 3/17/13.)
News from the Wine Room and a Proper Reintroduction
In addition to adding wines as we discover new varietals or regions that expand our list, we have expanded the major wine-growing regions over the past few months. We’ve had the pleasure of sharing this list with many of you in person, but in a longer format, we’re sharing this conversation with Riverpark sommelier Sean Kerby. Below, Sean will introduce the list properly and with more detail, but additionally, you can now find our updated list on our website with all of our food menus. Or, by clicking here.
When creating our wine list with Chef Sisha—or just as importantly, maintaining the wine list—what processes do you go through? Or, which variables are you looking to fulfill in order to create a balanced list?
The key word there is balanced. We are not trying to create a specialized list here because our cuisine is so cosmopolitan. As a restaurant in New York, we may borrow cooking techniques from France, flavors of the Mediterranean, spice and heat from South America, and compose dishes that encompass the myriad of cultures we have here in the city. When you look at the wine list, you’re not necessarily going to see wines that are apt for just one type of food. As Sisha likes to say, we’re all over the place in a very controlled manner. So the wine list, too, has to be all over the place—but again, in a controlled manner. We want to give ample selection and include all the different wine styles and different price points, offering value across the board. So, if someone is here for the raw bar or hamachi, they can sit down and enjoy a Chablis from the village level to grand cru, and likewise, if they’re sitting down for the sirloin, they can have a cult Cabernet from the ‘90’s or a Châteauneuf-du-Pape with lamb. We try to create that same versatility that is represented in our food menu.
We offer several Chilean wines. In what ways specifically does this offering make our list unique?
Being Chilean and having several contacts back in Chile, Sisha has done a tremendous job sifting through all of the different wines that come from Chile and puts their best ‘wine face’ forward. There is a mass perception that Chile is associated with budget wines—thin, over-oaked, clumsily made. There is a lot of negative perception around Chilean wines and the only agreed upon is that they are cheap. Since Chilean wines came into the market—about 25 years ago—they began to flood the market to compete with the under $10 category. But, there are, and always have been, a lot of quality-minded, small producers that are farming very old vines. Chile is unique in that when the Phylloxera louse invaded the world’s vineyards around the turn of the 19th century decimating every famous wine region from Bordeaux to Napa and nearly everywhere in between, it never came to Chile. Whether due to its isolated position between the Andes Mountains and the Pacific Ocean, its sandy soils which are inhospitable to the louse, the strict import control of the government, or a combination of these, none of Chile’s vines had to be pulled and replanted as the rest of the world. This makes for some very old vines, some over 150 years old.
2010 Louis-Antonie Luyt, "El Pais de Quenehuao," Maule
2010 Garage Wine Co., "Lot #28,", Maipo Valley
The first three wines are from an exciting new, French producer, originally from Beaujolais.
The next, a traditional selection, now showing some age, and the last is from another
exciting producer that is a part of MOVI, a group of independent vitners.
How do you introduce these wines to our guests for the first time?
Whenever I visit a table, I get a sense of what they like to drink, or what they’re eating, if they’re interested in pairing. By taking that information I can see what wines are comparable. If they normally drink a Pinot Noir from the Russian River Valley, then I might suggest a Chilean pinot or a Carignan, which is still fruit-forward, has a refreshing acidity, and has few tannins like a Pinot Noir. Most of our guests are adventurous and delight to find a comparable wine they might enjoy from a new grape or place. I’ve tasted all of these wines and they each hit a certain mark. I believe that the Chilean wines on our list are world class and have a balanced structure that appeals to a wide range of guests. Once they taste them, any skepticism is gone.
Compared to similar restaurants in New York City, our wines generally appear to be less expensive. Can you explain why?
One of the core principles of this restaurant is offering the best quality, at the best value possible. We do it with all of our meats and seasonal vegetables. We don’t ever skimp on quality, but we don’t want to be a special destination restaurant for just birthdays and wedding anniversaries. Our food and drinks are what we want to enjoy every day. In that sense, we want to offer the best quality wine we can, but don’t want to put them in a price range that is untenable. Even when we’re sourcing back vintages, we’re looking for the best values out there. We’re conscious of what our neighbors are doing, of course, and if we can undercut them in some cases by $100 or $200, then we’re happy to do that. It’s just another service to our guests, even if some of the selections are expensive due to their rarity.
Can you share some of the specific expansions we've made to our list?
We’ve increased our selections over the past couple of months by about 20%. We found some esoteric selections like Petit Verdot and oxidized and botrytized Tokaj Friulano, but most importantly, we have brought more depth to the great wine regions of the world—Bordeaux, Napa Valley, Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Burgundy, Piedmont, the Rhein. We felt that some of the greatest wines of the world were underrepresented in a list of our size. And not only did we want to offer more of these wines, but we wanted to offer wines that are really a pleasure to drink—wines that are at peak, mature wines.
For instance we added older vintages to our Cabernet section. It’s one of those grapes that people tend to drink really young, two or three years of age, when it’s loaded with a lot of cassis, sweet vanilla, really huge body with big tannic grip. If you’re having a steak, it’s the perfect thing. But Bordeaux is Cabernet Sauvignon as well, and you would rarely drink good Bordeaux young. You would want to wait five to ten years at least when they start showing their maturity. I think people have this idea that New World wines—just because they drink better in their youth—don’t age. I disagree whole-heartedly. So we have several Cabernets from better producers from the ‘90’s, some even going back to the ‘80’s. In the case of Zinfandel, we have a Ridge from 1978. As they mature, you start seeing their secondary flavors, such as earth, mushroom, spices, and cedar that come out and show the complexity of these Californian wines. As for the tannins, they’re ripe to begin with, but the tannins resolve and become even more silky and supple.
Another section we expanded was our selection of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Châteauneuf has sort of fallen out of fashion for some reason and the prices are just incredible for the quality you get right now. What we have is not generally cheap (ranging from $100 to $300), but the concentration of fruit and the complexity in the wine and age-ability is on par with the greatest of wine regions that cost three times more. We have 1990 magnums of La Nerthe’s Cuvée des Cadettes that are drinking magnificently right now. These wines are built to age. On top of that, they’re a blend of up to 13 different grapes, so they have an inherent complexity just in the varietal selection.
We still have over 100 wines under $60, so we are not shifting the wine list in a different direction, but are trying to move it in many different directions while keeping its core principles—a curated list of wines that is balanced, cosmopolitan, and offers great juice at aggressive prices.
Join us for Presidents Day Brunch
To celebrate our nation's presidents (and the approaching three-day weekend), we will be serving brunch, instead of lunch, on Monday, February 18th from 11am to 3pm. To view our full menu, click here, and we hope to see you this weekend!
NYC Winter Restaurant Week | Jan. 14th - Feb. 8th
NYC Restaurant Week returns this winter, beginning January 14th through February 8th. Like last year, we'll be offering our full menus with some supplemental pricing and participating in the following:
Monday - Friday Lunch and Dinner
Note: For the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday on Monday, January 21st, we will be serving our brunch menu from 11am to 3pm.
For reservations, please call us at 212.729.9790 or email our reservations office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We look forward to seeing you again—or welcoming you for the first time!
Let's Ring in the New Year with Dinner and a Dance!
This New Year's Eve, we're celebrating with tasting menus and big-band music performed live by Gerard Carelli & His Orchestra. We're offering two tasting menus so you can keep your midnight plans if they're already made, or join us for our five-course tasting and a Champagne toast at midnight. Either way, the evening is sure to be a fun, festive time, and we hope you'll join us!
Reservations from 5:30pm to 7:00pm
Three-course tasting menu
$85 per person
Reservations from 8:30pm to 10:30pm
Five-course tasting menu & Champagne toast at midnight
$125 per person
For reservations, please call 212.729.9790 or email our reservations office via email@example.com.
Happy Holidays & Best Wishes for a Wonderful 2013!
Gather Your Family & Friends for Thanksgiving at Riverpark!
This year we’re serving Thanksgiving dinner in the traditional family style, with a 3-course feast of our favorite dishes meant to be passed and shared. Click here view our full Thanksgiving menu, and let the countdown to Smoked Garlic Gravy begin.
We hope you’ll join us, and to make a reservation, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 212.729.9790.
You Can Come Back, Now! We Reopen Tonight!
We hope this email finds you and your families safe, and recovering quickly from the effects of last week’s historic storm. We feel very fortunate that our restaurant was not damaged, but like many others in our area, it’s been a challenge recovering power and heat after the extensive flooding Sandy left in its wake.
However, let’s not forget how much New Yorkers can accomplish when we work together. The supportive spirit of the dining community and efforts of @dineoutNYC are felt examples that we hope will continue. Please come out and support us, our staff and all the city’s downtown restaurants and businesses as we reopen our doors.
The entire team is beyond excited to see you back in our dining room again, and until then, be well and best wishes in the weeks to come!
A Change in Seasons, A Change in Cocktails
The change into a new season is always a fun time; working with the season's newly available produce and exploring what satiates us in the cooler weather. Along with the many new dishes landing across our fall menus, we're excited to raise a glass to fall with these new additions!
(Cocktails from left to right, below, and our full cocktail list and fall menus available here)
Colonel Mustard, Mustard-infused white rum, thyme honey, lime, candied bacon
Copper Canyon, Lemon verbena-infused tequila, Aperol, grapefruit, orange bitters
Smokey Empire, Pisco, smoked apple, rosemary, prosecco float
Siam Sour, Bourbon, Cardamaro, tamarind, lime pickled chile
Join us for a Farm BBQ, Benefiting New York Needs You
’wichcraft and Riverpark are throwing a BBQ to benefit New York Needs You, an important organization that’s working to help first-generation college students realize their college and career ambitions.
The event will take place rain or shine, and tickets can be purchased here. Thanks so much for your support and we hope you can join us for this fun event!
In Season and House-Grown!
We're thrilled to be in the peak of summer harvesting and here is a list of what Riverpark Farm has been putting into our walk-ins since the beginning of August. For more information about our adjacent farm, weekly updates, visitor information and growing tips, visit our blog!
Greens and Flowers
Scarlet and Golden Frills
Purple Ruffle Basil
Pistou (Bush) Basil
Cacho de Cabra
Hungarian Hot Wax
Mellow Star Shishito
Serrano del sol
French Charentais Savor
Little Baby Flower Watermelon
New Orchid Watermelon
Hill Country Red
All of our Favorite 4th of July Fare for Lunch!
Proyecto Paladar and Cooking In Cuba
Market in Havana
We had the exciting opportunity to be a part of Proyecto Paladar, a non-commercial cultural exchange through food, that was part of the 11th Havana Biennial last week. The project was the brainchild of New York City architect and restaurant designer Craig Shillitto, who built a restaurant out of shipping containers at the Wifredo Lam Center of Contemporary Art in La Habana Vieja, Cuba.
Proyecto Paladar, created by Craig Shillitto
The installation curated by Elizabeth Grady, was a 10-day dinner series that brought together 10 New York City chefs selected by Sara Jenkins, with 10 Cuban paladar chefs to create a dinner in partnership for one night. Attendees of the dinners were foreign visitors who made donations in support of the overall project, and to extend the spirit of cultural exchange, each donation reserved a second seat for a local. To fill these seats, the project curators invited local Cubans involved in the assembly construction of the restaurant and museum community.
We were paired up with Liuyen Alvarez of Paladar Atelier, and after a frantic day visiting many of the local markets, we put together a four-course dinner for just under 100 people. Visiting the markets was eye-opening and made us city chefs realize just how fortunate we are to have such an abundance of food available to us every day. While the food there was plentiful and of good quality, it wasn’t easy to find.
But eventually we found what we needed and preparing dinner with Chef Alvarez, or “Gallego” as he’s affectionately called by his colleagues, was a fun and memorable experience. We served a cucumber soup with red snapper ceviche for the first course, followed by poached spiny lobster, with watermelon, green mango and black salsa, then roasted whole saddle of pork with freekeh, long beans and grilled okra. For dessert, a coconut panna cota with lime marmalade and plenty of mojitos and coffee provided by our friends at La Colombe.
Our team before service
We are very grateful for the experience and Havana is a beautiful place, but the best part was the interaction and partnership between the chefs from Havana and NYC. If you want to see more photos from our trip, head over to our Facebook page.
And lastly, we want to extend a huge thanks to our friends at Breville for providing us with the awesome equipment!
Explore wines from Chile with us!
A few notes on Chilean wines...
Chile’s geography is perfect for winemaking. The warm, dry summers and cold, rainy winters combined with high altitudes and heavy, well-drained soils yield high-quality wines that rival those of more famous appellations, such as Napa Valley and Bordeaux.
Carmenère is Chile’s signature grape, and about 98% of the world’s production of it comes from Chile. One of the original Bordeaux varietals, it disappeared from European vineyards in the mid-19th century and reappeared among Chile’s Merlot vines about hundred years later. Carmenère is rich in berry fruits and spice, with smooth, well-rounded tannins, making it a very pleasing and easy-to-drink varietal.
Introducing our new Events Website and virtual Event Planner
Post by Kelly, Events Coordinator
Hello from the Events Team at Riverpark! Over the last few months we have been working to re-design our Events website so our guests can access the information they’re looking for quickly and easily. We offer several space and package options and wanted to share them in an organized, yet beautiful way. And now, it’s finally ready! Drum roll, please: I’m excited to introduce our brand new Riverpark Events website, featuring a virtual Event Planner. The website can be accessed using the “Events” tab in the navigation menu, above, or by visiting www.riverparknyc.com/events. On the site you will be able to explore GORGEOUS photos of all of our spaces as well as download spec sheets that contain all the tiny, but important, details you might need.
However, the most highly anticipated portion of the site is the Event Planner. This tool will help you to build your event and submit a detailed inquiry directly to our team. You are able to customize everything from your guest count and event date to the exact food and beverage package that suits your needs. We’ve even considered a step for you to request AV equipment, décor, entertainment and gifts for your guests! Did you know that Riverpark can accommodate cocktail receptions for up to 575 guests? Or, that The Farm is available for cocktail receptions in addition to private, family-style farm dinners? The Event Planner is simple to use and will guide you through each step. Then, with the information you’ve shared, we’ll create a proposal for you.
Happy planning and we look forward to your next event!
Countdown to Our Super Bowl XLVI Party
Just two days left until the big game, and this Sunday we're throwing a game-day party with ultimate viewing in our private dining room. We'll set up with tables, lounge furniture and big screens, but we're most excited about our dueling team buffets—each inspired by either the Giants' or Patriots' hometown. Reservations are $100 per person and include access to both buffets and our open bar. The party starts at 6pm, with kick-off at 6:30pm.
For reservations, or if you have any questions, please contact our reservations office at 212.729.9790 or via email at email@example.com.
salami, prosciutto, coppa, provolone
beans, spicy peppers, sour cream
Buffalo Chicken Wings
carrots, celery, blue cheese
NY Strip Steak Carving Station
rolls, horseradish sauce
Raw Barclams, oysters, shrimp
Beer Battered Cod
Boston Lettuce Wedge
blue cheese dressing
Boston Cream Pie
November 3, 2011
Let Us Do the Cooking this Year!
For those staying close to home, or traveling into the city this Thanksgiving, we hope you'll join us for the feast to be had at Riverpark.
Only the following Thanksgiving menu will be served on Thursday, November 24th and the restaurant will be open from 12-6pm. Dinner is $85 per person and a kids' menu will be available. For reservations, please call 212.729.9790.
Trevisano & Frisée Salad
Poached pears, spiced almonds, gruyère, mustard vinaigrette
Parsnip veloute, black truffle purée
Mushroom Salad, pecorino crouton, caramelized shallots
Hamachi Crudo & Tartare
Celery root purée, celery salad, pomegranate vinaigrette
Sautéed Foie Gras
Roasted figs, salsify, ruby streak mustard greens
Heritage Free Range Turkey
Dark & white meat
Roasted Beef Sirloin
Glazed cippolini onions
Basil Ricotta Ravioli
Pumpkin pesto, delicata squash, spiced pumpkin seeds
Whole Roasted Dourade
Fennel & herbs
SIDES FOR THE TABLE
Roasted Root Vegetables
Brussels Sprouts-Apple Hash
Pecan Tart / Pumpkin Pie / Chocolate Tart
with Vanilla Ice Cream
October 27, 2011
A Debut of Desserts and Introducing Pastry Chef Angie Lee
If you've dined with us recently, maybe you noticed something different about our dessert menu. Perhaps you tried our Plum Tart with orange-buttermilk ice cream, cardamom créme anglaise and almond brittle or the Sheep's Milk Yogurt Cheesecake with roasted figs, preserved walnut and anise hyssop from our farm next door.
Whipping up these delectable additions is our new Pasty Chef Angie Lee. Angie comes to the Riverpark kitchen by way of Del Posto, Corton, A Voce and most recently, Junoon. Before deciding to become a professional in the confectionary arts, Angie lived in Houston, Atlanta and Korea, where she earned her graduate degree in history. But soon after, she realized her passion was in cooking.
Angie finds inspiration from what she's obsessed with at the moment. One recent obsession led to our Affogato, made with frozen espresso meringue, caramelized cocoa nibs, créme de cacao milk foam and vanilla ice cream. Her biggest influence in pastry is Robert Pruitt who she met at Corton and helped craft her style of classic French technique combined with experimental modern techniques. Angie's desserts play on the savory side and she always looks to incorporate interesting textural components.
Angie's desserts are the perfect complement to our savory dishes here at Riverpark—they showcase interesting ingredients and preparations but satisfy our cravings for honest and delicious food. We are thrilled to have Angie on board and look forward to what she'll create next. Right now she's looking at seckel pears and fresh cranberries, but can't wait to incorporate what the farm will inspire her with next spring.
So, next time you visit, we hope you'll save room for dessert.
October 13, 2011
Riverpark Turns One!
In celebration of our first anniversary, we're sharing a glass of bubbles with each dinner guest. We hope you'll join us tonight, and for a look into this past year, see below.
October 10, 2011
Riverpark Farm Wins the Municipal Art Society of New York's "Livable City Award"
Last week, the Municipal Art Society of New York announced that Riverpark Farm is one of five organizations to win their "Livable City Awarad." In addition to making NYC a better place to live, MAS President Vin Cipolla said "These extraordinary organizations and people make New York the vibrant, creative place it is. Without their commitment to addressing urban challenges and enriching the city's cultural environment, New York would be a much less interesting and productive place to live."
Congratulations to our Farm team and their fellow winners, including, Gospel for Teens, ioby, Storm King Art Center, Urban Samaritan and Angela Elie, center manager of the Detective Keith Williams Recreation Center in Queens.
For more information about the "Livable City Awards," the winners and the MAS Summit taking place in New York next week, visit www.mas.org.
SEPTEMBER 27, 2011
Riverpark Pairs with Capture Wines on October 3rd
We're thrilled to be hosting Capture Wines Proprietor Benjamin Sharp in our private dining room next Monday for a specially paired tasting menu created by Chef Ortuzar. Space is still available for our five-course dinner, but if you need a little convincing, Chef Ortuzar's menu is below.
Tradition Sauvignon Blanc
Hamachi, avocado, radish, charred chiles
Les Pionniers Sauvignon Blanc
Butter-poached prawns, Riverpark Farm vegetables, gnocchi, lemon verbena
Roasted Pekin duck, bronze fennel, Madagascar chocolate, pickled chiles
Alliance & Harmonie Red Wines
Specialty Cheese Selection
Revelation Cabernet Sauvignon
SEPTEMBER 22, 2011
Ways to Help Local Farms Recover from the Damage Irene Left Behind
1. Dine Out with us here at Riverpark on Sunday, September 25th!
2. Dine Out Irene
4. Volunteer(Scroll down for a list of farmers who have asked or help.)
6. Speak Up
7. Eat Local Now
Last month, Hurricane Irene threatened our Zone-1-located restaurant that sits just over the East River and Riverpark Farm (which was just weeks away from its official opening). Luckily, we had enough notice, available space and able hands to move each milk crate indoors. The storm passed, and like most city-dwellers, we emerged just fine.
The reality of the threats were unfortunately felt by acres and acres of area farmland in upstate New York, New Jersey and Vermont. Farms that were in the peak of their tomato seasons, with much left to harvest this summer and fall, found their crops completely submerged—and flood waters have yet to fully recede. GrowNYC estimates "that 80% of Greenmarket farmers have been impacted, with about 10% reporting severe loss—80-100% of their products."
There are many ways to help our fellow farmers get back on their feet and we encourage helping in any ways possible. One very easy way to contribute is by reserving a table with us on Sunday.
This Sunday, September 25th, we will be participating in Dine Out Irene, a fundraiser that benefits area farms recovering from the damages left by Hurricane Irene. A percentage of our brunch and dinner sales will benefit Just Food and GrowNYC, nonprofit organizations that will distribute those funds directly to the farmers.
For more information on ways to help, visit www.grownyc.com and www.justfood.com.
SEPTEMBER 16, 2011
To all of Riverpark Farm's family and friends: thank you. And, we did it!
If you're new to Riverpark, right next door to our restaurant and the 'wichcraft cube location, we've built a farm.
Our team was fortunate to have incredible support along the way from GrowNYC and ORE Design and Technology, whose teams helped turn one of New York City's 600 stalled construction sites into a green example of how with just a few supplies and a little space, anyone can grow their own produce. Many have offered support by visiting and spreading the good word about our project, and others have given support by loading milk crates of young crops into the site earlier this summer. And many, many helping hands jumped at a moment's notice to bring the entire farm indoors when Hurricane Irene threatened our crops. And there wouldn't be a place for each crate or a Farm Table to dine amongst them if it weren't for the incredible Tom Yearick.
If you've been following the progress of the farm (in person here at the Riverpark restaurant or @RiverparkFarm), you probably noticed this Farm Table. So, in addition to the walls coming down to reveal what we've been growing behind them, we're excited to announce our 12-seat Farm Table, nestled within Riverpark Farm on the ground floor. Our unique dining experience offers our guests a chance to sit amongst the more than 100 different types of crops growing feet away from the Riverpark kitchen, and each day's menu will be created by our chefs based on the farm's daily harvest. We are now taking reservations for lunch and dinner!
Check back soon for sneak peeks at what's being served at the Farm Table—but for now, here are some photos to show you what we've been up to this summer!
|The Alexandria Center's West Tower Construction Site, Fall 2007|
|The Alexandria Center's West Tower Construction Site, Fall 2010|
|Moving the plants indoors to prepare for Hurricane Irene, August 2011|
|Turning the 'wichcraft cube next door into a temporary greenhouse to
protect the crops from Irene.
|Celebrating the opening of Riverpark Farm with our friends and partners
that helped make it happen! photo credit: Eric Ribeiro
August 24, 2011
Dinner is served on the Riverpark Terrace
We are delighted to announce that our full dinner menu can now be enjoyed on our terrace. Our guests asked for it, and we're happy to oblige! Set under trees with views overlooking the East River, we invite you to join us for a late-summer dinner while watching the sun set. Here's our full dinner menu, inspired especially by what's being grown next door at Riverpark Farm.
|Riverpark terrace, now serving our full dinner menu.|
Of course if you just want to meet up with friends for a drink and snacks as you crave them, that's fine, too! Our terrace menu is still available, with raw bar offerings, Cheese Empanadas, Fried Chicken and Oyster Tacos. Or nibbles of Potato Chips with Rosemary Gorgonzola dip, Crispy Paella Rice Balls, Smoked Olives and Spicy Almonds.
JUNE 22, 2011
Introducing Blue Forest Coffee from La Colombe
Riverpark proudly serves La Colombe Torrefaction coffee, something which has taken on new meaning in recent months with the introduction of Blue Forest coffee. La Colombe released this unique single-origin coffee, grown semi-wild in the mountains of Haiti, earlier this year. Despite a harrowing 2010, a small portion of Haiti's coffee-growing region survived and continues to produce some of the world's most flavorful beans. Blue Forest, an heirloom typica variety, is a rare and historical coffee that comes from an unaltered line traced back to the first plant cultivated outside of Ethiopia. Blue Forest is also the only specialty-grade Haitian coffee sold in America. La Colombe gives back to the region by donating a portion of the profits from Blue Forest to its villages and farms.
Riverpark echoes the craftsmanship, thoughtfulness, and care put into Blue Forest by only using the French press method to best showcase the coffee's sweet, fruity, and refined tasting notes. We are proud to have been the first restaurant to serve this unique coffee in North America.
|Jacob Leonti of La Colombe; Robinson Nelson, representing nine Haitian coffee grower co-ops; Riverpark Chef Sisha Ortúzar; La Colombe Managing Partner Nicolas O'Connell|
To learn more about Haiti's coffee growing regions and to get an inside look at the country's
roasting plants, visit Todd Carmichael's blog. (Carmichael is the co-founder of La Colombe
MAY 5, 2011
Exciting Spring Updates!
Weekend brunch is now in full swing at Riverpark! The early, and surprising, favorite on the brunch menu is our vegetarian take on the Croque Madame. We replace ham with asparagus and serve it with a fried egg, béchamel, gruyere, and a salad. Some of Sisha's favorites are actually starters - the Grilled Bread & Avocado with extra virgin olive oil and sea salt and Fresh Mango with lime, sea salt, and chile. These dishes also make great counterpoints to the richer brunch fare. As for the cocktails, we unveiled brunch with a sampling of classics such as the Bloody Mary and Mimosa, but will be rolling out some exciting new cocktails that further complement our menu in the next few weeks. As the weather gets warmer, remember that brunch is also available on our outdoor patio – though seating is first-come, first-served!
Expanding our outdoor space with the terrace
In the coming weeks we will open up the terrace space to further expand Riverpark's outdoor options! The pockets of nice weather we have experienced over the last few months have proven the popularity of the patio, so we took this as an opportunity to extend the success and the outdoor options for our guests. The terrace will be a first-come, first-served section with its own entrance and host stand. The 72-seat space will be furnished with picnic tables to encourage communal seating and create a more casual atmosphere. Hours of operation will mirror those of the restaurant, opening at 12pm on weekdays and 11am on weekends. We will offer the lunch and brunch menu at the same time as the restaurant and shift to our more casual bar menu until close.
With the weather finally warming up – we look forward to seeing you outdoors at Riverpark!
APRIL 18, 2011
Sean Kerby: Some insight into the Riverpark wine list
Sisha has given me the opportunity to build a list that explores the world of wine. I often find, however, that many wines are in the midst of an identity crisis where winemakers use more manipulative techniques to craft a wine of a style rather than a place. I am constantly in search of wines that are naturally in balance from where they are – which has led me to focus on traditional wine-growing areas and emerging appellations like northern Michigan.
A Riesling from Michigan?
Though it is surprising to most, Michigan climate is well-suited for producing ripe and well-balanced Rieslings. While many other New World wine growing regions have to rely on irrigation, acidification, and other tricks of the trade, the Old Mission Peninsula is blessed with a good climate and German-trained winemakers who know when to leave well enough alone. The Old Mission Peninsula AVA is surrounded by the Grand Traverse Bay which moderates the region's temperatures, allowing grapes to hang for a longer time, further ripening without ever losing their acidity.
Michigan Riesling on the Riverpark menu
We are currently offering the 2009 Chateau Grand Traverse Whole Cluster Riesling by the glass and bottle. The whole cluster process means that the grapes are pressed and vinified with no skin-contact, giving the wine a particularly refreshing and clean flavor. The Riesling's tasting notes of white peach, lime and white flowers make it a perfect pairing for two very different dishes on our menu – the ceviche and the pork belly sandwich. With its lime flavors, tropical notes, and cleansing quality, the wine's flavors parallel that of the ceviche. On the other end of the spectrum, its acidity cuts through the fat of the pork belly and pretzel sandwich and the barely perceptible residual sugar plays with the sweetness of the mustard glaze.
MARCH 28, 2011
Erin Bellard: Private dining at Riverpark
The Riverpark event spaces are really quite unique – not just in size and scope, but also in the creativity they afford us. Most restaurants'private dining rooms are limiting in that they cannot be easily rearranged and can only fit about 30 people. The rooms at Riverpark are like a blank canvas – allowing us to host events of all kinds from an intimate birthday dinner for 15 to a 1,000 person event for the NYU Dental School. What is also particularly impressive is that multiple events and day-to-day service can occur simultaneously without any interruption to our guests.
Since our opening in October we have had the opportunity to host many different celebrations and gatherings. Amidst the festive holiday parties late this fall, we also hosted events for Saturday Night Live, Architectural Digest and GrowNYC. Additionally, we had our first TV close-up with a shoot for Gossip Girl. In early March, we hosted Yorkville Common Pantry's 30th Anniversary Gala with our partners at Apella. Between our two spaces we put together a cocktail reception, awards ceremony and seated dinner for 300 people. My favorite part of the evening was the experiential booth that was set up in the lobby. This gave guests an opportunity to better understand and partake in YCP's Food Pantry program by putting together grocery packages. Next month, we will host the graduation ceremonies for NYU's Dental and Medical Schools. We're already gearing up for a busy wedding season – with couples reaching out for everything from rehearsal dinners to full buyouts – through the summer months.
For additional detail on our private event spaces, please visit our private dining page or contact Kelly Cervantes at 212.810.1814 x 403 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
MARCH 14, 2011
Chef de Cuisine Bryan Hunt: Things to look forward to this spring at Riverpark
Rolling out brunch
In the upcoming months, Riverpark will begin serving brunch on weekends. This is the first time I'll be cooking brunch in Manhattan – and this won't be anything like the prix-fixe Mother's Day brunches from years ago. People often indulge a little more for brunch than they would with their average everyday breakfast. That makes it more fun to create dishes and also allows us to incorporate more entrée characteristics – like more proteins – onto the plate. Sisha and I are already working out how to incorporate crispy brisket – a recent addition to our dinner menu – into a breakfast-oriented dish. We'll also take one of my favorite pre-shift meals of pork belly on our house-made potato rolls and turn it into a breakfast sandwich.
We are working with a new oyster purveyor, W&T, and I'm really excited about the oyster program we have right now. They have provided us with some great East and West Coast options – spanning from Washington, Vancouver, Virginia, Rhode Island, and Long Island. We have also just received some small octopus from the Canary Islands from Gullo Specialty Foods. This sushi-grade quality octopus arrives fresh – with a great, natural brininess. I'm especially looking forward to using it during the warmer months, where it will make appearance in a grilled octopus salad.
FEBRUARY 22, 2011
Checking In With Chef Sisha Ortuzar – 5 Months In
From concept to execution
We're just beginning to wrap up a very exciting and intense period; having gone straight from the conceptual design and development phase into the opening of Riverpark. When you come up with a concept, you have a pretty good idea of where you want the restaurant to go – but once those doors open, the restaurant and its guests tell you where they want it to go. Amidst this period of necessary change, what's been most interesting is how little we had to adjust the concept we created over a year ago: the restaurant aesthetic, menu, and food have stayed true to our vision – in fact, the only thing we needed to adjust was the music.
What has surprised me the most
The warm reception we've received. Equally as surprising and exciting has been the interest in our private event spaces and the scope we've been able to cover – from intimate dinners to events for over 1,000.
From here on in
Now that we've settled in, we have the chance to focus on the day-to-day running of the restaurant. Looking forward, I'm most excited to see what the nice weather will bring. We're fortunate that our restaurant was designed to take great advantage of its beautiful surroundings – namely a large outdoor space and beautiful river views, My team is already working on a menu and space ideas for the terrace to make sure it's a place people will seek out.