2nd City Looking to Be First With Diners

A New York City restaurant that’s specifically designed to appeal to those on social media was part of the original plan that Jordan Andino put together. The success of the concept is such that Andino is looking to eventually franchise it, with all facets of the business already taken into consideration.

Located in the West Village, 2nd City is what Andino calls a Filipino taqueria, with the name itself based on his plan to take the idea to secondary cities across the country. The food isn’t necessarily original, consisting of things like burritos and tacos, with a touch of the Phillipines thrown in.

Andino is aware that the West Village is still part of New York City, which seemingly contradicts the push for those secondary markets. However, he points out that many of the restaurants in that segment of the city are high-priced, as opposed to the reasonable prices he offers.

Stating that approximately 70 percent of his business stems from social media like Instagram and websites like Yelp, Andino also offers up provacative names for some of his meals. Visitors can eat such things as Bi-Curious Tacos and Nice Buns, with the idea that such a light-hearted atmosphere will encourage visitors to stay around after they eat.

Some have compared that concept to Starbucks, which Andino wouldn’t mind emulating. However, one other innovation he offers is that payments for meals are never made in cash. That prevents any crime from taking place and also makes for much easier bookkeeping.

Eat your natto

Have you heard of natto?

If you haven’t, Dr. Ann Yonetani, a microbiologist turned food entrepreneur, hopes you will.

According to an article published in the New York Times, http//www.nytimes.com/pages/health/nutrition/, the fermented soybean condiment has a mild, earthy taste and looks like small brown jelly beans floating in white goo. Popular in parts of Japan, natto hasn’t caught on in many other parts of the world, and Yonetani is hoping to change that.

Yonetani, who teaches food science at the New School in New York City, founded NYrture in 2015 to introduce New Yorkers to one of the most potent sources of healthy bacteria there is.

In our effort to steer clear of germs, Yonetani believes that we have gotten rid of many of the helpful bacterias that live in our guts and keep us healthy.

“Food used to be fresh and dirty,” she told The Times. “We lived surrounded by nature. Nowadays, we are exposed to too little microbial diversity.”

According to Yonetani, each tablespoon of her natto product contains a billion Bacillus subtilis, a healthful soil bacteria and natural probiotic. Introduced to natto as a child while visiting relatives in Japan, Yonetani makes natto in the back of the Organic Food Incubator in Long Island City, Queens, according to the article. Each batch she makes comes out tasting a little bit different from the previous one.

“That’s not something the food industry likes,” she told The Times. “But I think its beautiful, because that’s biology.”

The Breakfast Burger

Andrew Zurica of Hard Times Sundaes, well-known baron of all things fried, has presented his newest creation at Urbanspace Vanderbilt: the Breakfast Burger. In comparison to all of the triple-patty-loaded, cheese-bleeding machinations of the past that have made him famous, the Breakfast Burger is strikingly understated. While most of his creations have been known for striking the eyes with almost as much of an impact as the taste buds, the breakfast burger is relatively humble.

At one point in time, even Zurica himself was skeptical at the idea that he’d ever be the one to unveil such a thing as a creation of his own. Zurica has said on multiple occasions that his purist heart as a cook would forbid him from ever using eggs for anything other than breakfast; however, despite his adamant declaration against using eggs for anything other than the first meal of the day, the breakfast burger was born nonetheless.

The breakfast burger features two pan-fried eggs, swimming in butter and joining two layers of bacon and cheese to blanket a beef patty in the middle. All of the burger’s elements are hugged between two poppy-seed Kaiser rolls.

Some have considered it a true burger with a sunrise twist, but to Zurica, his creation is merely a traditional egg sandwich has adopted a burger patty. Keeping true to his famous purism, the breakfast burger can only be purchased between the hours of 8 a.m. (9 a.m. on weekends) and 11 a.m.

What’s Natto Love?

For the adventurous eater out there, or at least a person who is willing to try anything at least once, natto is definitely something that needs to plop on their plate. A Japanese creation, the sticky, awful-smelling substance is fermented soybeans, complete with a Chostbusters-worthy goop to tie the whole mess together. But as nasty as it looks and smells, it reportedly comes with a lot of health benefits.

The bacteria present in the rotting soybean concoction is what makes natto something of a peculiar health craze. People across the nation are familiar with healthy bacteria present in many yogurts, and the same can be said for natto, only it’s supposed to be much better for the body. In fact, this nasty creation that has many people shaking their heads and holding their guts is quite the popular delicacy in Japan and is quickly gaining popularity in other parts of the world as well.

Known for its key ingredient, the Nattokinase, a natural enzyme found in the fermented bean, natto carries a strong tie to digestive health and overall well-being, giving it positive praise in Japan. As people become more familiar with the odd taste, smell, and preparation of this bean (it doesn’t have to be prepared with the goo), natto will surely soon be found in large numbers at natural markets and food stands across the nation.

Pushing Boundaries in the Culinary Scene: New Trends and Old Favorites

From Texas BBQ to NYC fine dining, artists all over the country are pushing boundaries and testing the limits of what food can and should look, taste, and feel like.

San Antonio is hardly known for its creative and high dining, but brothers Tim and Alex Rattray are changing that with their revolutionary Granary. They bring originality to their casual lunch menu and full-service, high dining dinner – even brewing their own in-house beer and serving responsibly sourced brisket rubbed in a spice blend that includes coffee and cinnamon.

Although some other Texans believe the Rattrays have taken their experimental BBQ menus too far, food critics all over the country rave about the original, delicious creations.

Similarly, food critics excitedly await the opening of acclaimed chef Günter Seeger’s new tasting-menu-only restaurant, Günter Seeger NY. He remains committed to the values such as high-quality meats, custom daily menus, and farm-to-table freshness. The new place seats 34 by reservation only with dinners starting at $185, tip included.

With all the excitement about new trends, however, it is easy to overlook some incredibly creative old stand-bys, so here is a list of the best cocktails from every state. Drink like a local in Alaska, by enjoying a Smoked Salmon Mary, try a Cropduster in Arkansas or a Hot Buttered Rum in Connecticut.

Whether you are out for a night on the town, need a casual lunch, or want a spot for that hot date, the culinary scene around the country has your back!