May 16, 2010

Taste of Tribeca

Seafood Ceviche in Sweet Citrus Sauce w/ Crispy Plantain Chip from Centrico

Inside of the Jade Dumpling

White Grape Gazpacho w/ Spiced Marcona Almonds from Bar Artisanal

The Taste of Tribeca, one of Manhattan's largest neighborhood-centric food festivals brought in an incredible crowd this year. A showcase over 60 different restaurants sprawled across Duane and Greenwich Streets. However each $40 ticket ($45 at the event) allowed just only six tastings, which forced people to prioritize. Between B and me, we checked out about 16 different places with two tickets. Among the restaurants that we tried, Centrico's seafood ceviche (top photo) was our favorite. The jade dumpling at Macao Trading Co. was a close second. More pics and Taste of Tribeca survival tips on the next page!

The amazing weather brought out the crowds in full force, which included dogs of all sizes, small children armed with drippy icecream, and tank-like strollers. While it was great that people could enjoy the Taste with friends and family, it made getting around slightly frustrating. Here are some general tips on how to make your Taste of Tribeca trip run as smoothly as possible next year:
  1. Be the early bird: show up close to the beginning of the event, about 15-30 minutes after opening time. The crowds are the thinnest then, plus all of the restaurants should be ready with food, which cuts down lines.
  2. Study the map in advance: know your surroundings and have a game plan. Check out the venues you know you want to try FIRST. Know where the restrooms, tables and beverage vendors are. 
  3. Delegate tasks: if you're with a group (4-5 people), it's inefficient to lug everyone around all booths. Have one person scout out a central meeting point (preferably with a table) and have others head to different booths and grab a few samples to bring back for everyone. Less waiting in lines and more eating with friends!
  4. Share: if you're just exploring with another friend and want to double your tastings, share the plates! It cuts down the waste, prevents you from stuffing your stomach too quickly, and hedges bad samples. 
  5. Eat clean: this might not be favorable to some, but opt to taste plates where you won't get your hands and face messy (e.g., no BBQ ribs, no chicken wings). If you can't resist the gooey deliciousness, just make sure to bring some wet naps. 
  6. Pack light: try not to bring any large bags, backpacks, umbrellas (if it's raining, try raincoat!), big hats, and strollers. It will get in the way of you and others, thus slowing everyone down.
  7. Take photos: what was that dish called again? Don't worry about remembering, just take a photo of the restaurant sign before you eat. Use your camera or iPhone to snap quick "tasting" notes. It will be fun to take a look at those later anyway. 
Got it? Ok, now onto some more fun!

Crawfish remoulade on gougers from Duane Park
The crawfish remoulade on gougers from Duane Park: the perfect bite-size amuse.

Amanda Freitag at The Harrison tableAcapella
Left: Amanda Freitag of The Harrison and former contestant on The Next Iron Chef

Scallops on the Grill at World Yacht
What smells so good? World Yacht's sizzling sea scallops of course!

Fizzy Lizzy Flavors
When thirst struck, we were greeted by a selection of Fizzy Lizzy's. I tried all of the flavors and liked pineapple the best. 

Chocolate Covered Banana
Out of no where, we scored a chocolate covered banana bite on a stick. Yay!

Park Entrance

Click for more pics!


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