Food + Fashion Meet at The New Potato ‘Pay with OpenTable’ Party in NYC — with Slideshow

Foodies and fashionistas gathered with The New Potato founders Danielle and Laura Kosann at Il Buco Alimentari in New York City to help us celebrate the recent launch of OpenTable mobile payments. Attendees, including restaurateur David Rabin, Eater photographer Daniel Krieger,  Momofuku beverage director Jordan Salcito, and VICE Munchies Editor-in-Chief Helen Hollyman, sipped wines and cocktails curated by Merchants of Beverage and munched on a menu that included crispy artichokes, octopus a la plancha, gnocchi with artichokes and chanterelles (SO GOOD!), salt-baked whole fish, roasted short ribs, and more. Take a peak at some pictures — and try out OpenTable payments in New York, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C.!

PS: Don’t miss these stylish suggestions for dining out this weekend from The New Potato — here and here.

OpenTable Restaurant Reviews Reveal #DinersChoice Top 30 Best BBQ Restaurants in America

Best BBQIn a nod to our nation’s longstanding love affair with barbecuing, we are pleased to honor the 2014 Diners’ Choice Award winners for the Top 30 Best Barbecue Restaurants in America. These awards reflect the combined opinions of more than 5 million restaurant reviews submitted by verified OpenTable diners for approximately 19,000 restaurants in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Showcasing regional styles and techniques, including dry rubs and wet brines, the winning eateries use a balance of nuanced spices and smoke to bring forth complex flavors in their barbecue dishes. The complete list includes notable restaurants in 12 states and Washington, D.C., such as Dinosaur Bar-B-Que in Harlem, Lambert’s Downtown BBQ in Austin, and Wexler’s in San Francisco. California has six award winners, followed by Illinois and New York with five each, Texas with four, and Ohio with two. Arizona, Colorado, Maryland, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Washington, D.C., and Wisconsin are also represented. Continue Reading

Stoic & Genuine Opens in Denver’s Historic Union Station: No Ocean, No Worries

Denver’s famous Union Station has gotten a much-needed renovation, and, along with stunning stores and a swank new hotel, some of the city’s best restaurateurs are setting up shop in the station, including Beth Gruitch and business partner and James Beard Award winner Jennifer Jasinski. The pair, who also operate Bistro Vendome, Euclid Hall, and Rioja, have opened Stoic & Genuine, a multi-coastal seafood and oyster house. Featuring fresh seafood that is flown in daily, as well as oysters harvested exclusively for the eatery, an amazing wine and craft beer program, an array of grower’s Champagne, and a unique granita bar, Stoic & Genuine is named for Jasinki’s husband Max (stoic) and executive chef Jorel Pierce (genuine), and they aim to deliver food and hospitality that reflects those principles.

The selection of granitas are meant to complement both seafood dishes, such as oysters, and a number of cocktails. Gruitch revealed that the concept for the granita offerings came about at Jasinki’s wedding a couple of years ago. She says, “We’ve taken it one step further, by presenting both savory and sweet options. The flavors are incredibly intense — plus, it keeps your drink cold so its perfect.” Her current favorites include the Sherry Amontillado (“Sherry and oysters are a perfect match!”) and the strawberry Champagne granita. “We simply top it with more bubbles,” she notes, “and it’s a really nice alternative to a mimosa or a Bellini.”

In a nod to Denver’s sporty, health-conscious foodies, Stoic & Genuine‘s menu is a real reflection of how Gruitch and Jasinski like to eat. Gruitch says, “I love the simplicity of it. It’s refreshing and all the flavors are there. Jen’s cooking is really light, yet there’s a ton of flavor there.”

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Champagne + Sushi + Sommeliers: Oh, Matsuhisa!

What’s better than throwing one party at the Food + Wine Classic in Aspen? Throwing two parties, of course! On Saturday night, OpenTable joined with master sommelier Dustin Wilson (wine director at Eleven Madison Park and star of the documentary Somm), Eric Railsback (sommelier and co-owner of Les Marchands Wine Bar in Santa Barbara), and Carlos Solorzano-Smith (beverage director of Matsuhisa) at Nobu’s Matsuhisa Aspen for a Champagne and sushi soiree.

There was dancing (although, sadly, not a dance-off), a Champagne waterfall, and culinary luminaries including chefs Matt Acarino (SPQR), Maria Sinskey (Robert Sinskey Vineyards), Bobby Stuckey (Frasca Food and Wine), Alex Stupak (Empellon Taqueria), and Ming Tsai (Blue Ginger), Dana Cowin, Ray Isle, and Kate Krader from Food + Wine, actress Ali Larter, and restaurateur Danny Meyer and wine director John Ragan of the Union Square Hospitality Group, among others.

Eyeball all the action in the slideshow below, with photos by Katrina Smith of The Smith Design.