Celebrating the New Food Emojis: Champagne, Tacos + More

Food Emojis

Like the rest of the iOS-using world, we’re bursting with excitement over the release of the new food (and more!) emojis. Finally, we can tell our friends in icons (as well as actual pictures) about all the delicious things we have — or want — to eat and drink. As we’re celebrating the new food emojis, we thought it would be fun to highlight reviews of the IRL versions.

If any diner needs a cheese emoji, it’s this one, who recently feasted on this perfect plate at Rotisserie Georgette in New York City.”The service was wonderful, the food original, especially the sugar snap peas and the first course, called a burrata, I believe.” Yes, it’s burrata — and yes, it’s fabulous!

Rotisserie Georgette

The humble American favorite was dubbed an “uber hot dog” by a recent guest at The Kirkland Tap & Trotter in Somerville, Massachusetts. “We came for the hot dogs and beer and were not disappointed. Pickled mustard seeds were a revelation.” Something tells us that Tony Maws and his crew are going to be seeing an awful lot of tweets with hot dog emojis very soon if this pup remains on the menu.

Hot Dog Emoji

Thanks to Apple for granting our gourmet wish for a taco emoji. Or maybe we should say mahalo instead, if we’re talking about the amazeballs fish tacos at Blue Dragon in Kamuela, Hawaii? A guest writes, “We ‘discovered’ Blue Dragon a few years ago, and I fell in LOVE with the fish tacos. Delicious, flaky fish in corn tortillas with salsa and guacamole. YUMMO!!”

Taco emojiContinue Reading

San Francisco 2016 Michelin-Starred Restaurants: Book a Table Today!

Al's Place reservations

OpenTable is pleased to highlight the honorees in the MICHELIN Guide San Francisco 2016. Fifty restaurants are included, with five Bay Area restaurants receiving the Michelin three-star level, the highest recognition in the culinary world, and seven achieving two Michelin stars. Thirty-eight restaurants earned one Michelin star. Al’s Place and Kin Khao, among others, are new to the list.

Being included in the respected MICHELIN Guide is a sign of excellence and quality. In the U.S., New York is one of only three cities where Michelin publishes an annual guide. The others are Chicago and New York. The MICHELIN Guide New York 2016 was published on October 1, and the MICHELIN Guide Chicago 2016 will be released on October 28.

Congratulations to all the San Francisco 2016 Michelin-starred restaurants, including:

Three Stars: Benu, The French LaundryManresa, The Restaurant at Meadowood, and Saison.

Two Stars: AcquerelloAtelier Crenn, Campton Place, Coi, Commis, and Quince.Continue Reading

Hazy Hits: 13 Smoky Cocktails to Get You Fired Up for Fall

In the era of Mad Men, drinking and smoking went hand in hand. Now the tradition has returned – sort of – as mixologists incorporate smoky components into their creations. Whether they’re infusing spirits and syrups, making ice cubes and garnishes, or filling tumblers, they’re employing a flurry of flavorful fumes of which Don Draper would surely approve. Here are 13 smoky cocktails to get you fired up for fall.

El Cielo by Juan Manuel Barrientos, Miami, Florida
This is not your average Old Fashioned. Made with Ron Zacapa Rum, cherry and orange bitters, and vanilla sugar, it’s finished with a rehydrated slim cut orange wheel. To add a smoky finishing touch, maple wood is burned inside a glass covering the tumbler.

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Hakkasan, San Francisco, California
Have you ever sipped a Negroni and thought, “This is good, but it would be better if it was smoked.”? Now that’s a possibility. This version showcases gin, sweet vermouth, and Campari infused with a sweet smog created by Grand Marnier-soaked wood chips.

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Woodshed Smokehouse, Fort Worth, Texas
Smoked ice sounds like an oxymoron, but it’s a delicious reality. The cool cubes form the backbone of the Smokey Maria, a tequila-ized twist on a Bloody Mary. Made with a spicy tomato mix and Herradura Double Barrel Reposado, it’s an impeccable way to start the day.

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Café Artscience, Kendall Square, Massachusetts
Smoked orange peel and cinnamon add a finishing touch to this autumnal libation. Forged out of whiskey, brandy, orange-infused apple cider, and apple cider vinegar, its crisp flavors give way to a deep warmth — just what you’ll want at the end of a cool fall day.

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Del Campo, Washington, D.C.
Everyone goes crazy for Starbuck’s PSL in the fall. The smoked pumpkin Old Fashioned is a boozy alternative made with Bulleit Rye, pumpkin cordial, and Peychaud’s Bitters. Before its poured, a chilled glass is inverted over a small stack of flaming canela (Mexican cinnamon), adding a smoky, spicy sensibility to the cocktail. You can watch it all come together here. [Photo by Greg Powers]

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Trace, Austin, Texas
Now you don’t need a fork and knife to tackle brisket. The smoked meat is infused into George Dickel Rye, so you can sip it. It’s the spine of their take on a Bloody Mary pumped up with Pearl Snap Pils and garnished with a garlic pickle.

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Quality Meats, Miami Beach, Florida
Aged rum and sweet Pedro Ximenez Sherry amp up this svelte sipper inspired by a Cuban cigar. To evoke the flavors of a smoldering stogie, housemade “Smoking Jacket” bitters and a cloud of peach wood smoke are incorporated. Cohiba not included.

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Beyond the Pie: 9 Apple Dishes + Drink for Fall Dining

We recently marked the birthday of John Chapman, better known as “Johnny Appleseed.” Chapman’s devotion to nature as a nurseryman, conservationist, and educator is said to have extended not only to apples but to animals and insects as well. But he is most famous for his propagation of apple trees across the Midwest. Yet, despite Chapman’s September birthday, October is when apple-eating (and cider-sipping) season really kicks into high gear in the U.S. and apple dishes dot the menus at restaurants across the nation.

In the interest of finding as many ways to eat delicious autumn apples as we can every day (and not just to keep the doctor away), we’re looking beyond the pie to showcase nine apple dishes and drink for fall dining.

Orchard Apple and Bleu Salad at Relish, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Crisp and tart, apples pair perfectly with creamy cheeses and leafy greens. Take, for example, the Orchard Apple and Bleu Salad at Relish in the PHL. This salad combines fresh, seasonal apple slices with assorted lettuces, blue cheese crumbles, candied walnuts and a raspberry vinaigrette. Sweet, tangy, crunchy, and healthful, this creation hits all the right notes.

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Warm Caramel Apple Crepe at Suzette’s Creperie, Wheaton, Illinois
For me, nothing tastes of autumn (and Halloween!) quite like caramel apples. Suzette’s Creperie raises the bar on that food memory in a serious way with its Salted Caramel Apple Crepe. Sautéed apples are topped with warm salted caramel sauce and pecans, then wrapped in a handmade crepe and served with a dollop of whipped cream. Oh, man. Or, rather, oh, Suzette!

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Green Apple Slaw at Valley Tap House, Apple Valley, Minnesota
Apples brighten up the taste of this otherworldly coleslaw. And, what better toothy condiment to slather on your burger and kick things up a notch? The signature burger at the Valley Tap House in the appropriately named Apple Valley, Minnesota, features a delicate topping of green apple slaw, as well as grilled portobello mushrooms, caramelized onions, and Italian truffle cheese.

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Apple Cider Doughnuts at White Mountain Cider Company, Glen, New Hampshire
No cider mill worth its apples is complete without the warming comfort of fresh, hot apple cider doughnuts. Thankfully, at White Mountain Cider Company, you can channel your inner Homer Simpson (“Mmm, doughnuts!”) with their Warm Cider Donuts and Ice Cream plate throughout the year. Turn up the volume on the deliciousness with a hit of rich caramel sauce.

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