It is no secret that cupcakes are the newest culinary obsession especially to anyone who spends a lot of time in the Chicago area. People are fascinated by this cute, creative dessert item and by the fact that everyone can choose their own special flavor even when supplying sweet treats for large groups. If you are in the Chicago area, no matter what part of the city you are visiting, chances are there is a bakery nearby mixing up these decadent indulgences. For now, take a look at the six locations below that have made a name for themselves and gained a large following of cupcake enthusiasts.
Whether we eat meat or not, we can still appreciate a good vegan or vegetarian dish. In fact, a lot of times we find ourselves completely satisfied with a vegan meal if it’s done right. This week Joonbug hit up a ton of vegan restaurants around NYC in search of our favorites. Lets take a look at our top 3...
Loving Hut (348 Seventh Avenue)
Mother’s Day is one of the biggest dining out holidays of the year because no mom should be put to work on her special day. Can you blame her? Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 12th, which is just one week away! Show your mom gratitude and appreciation for all that she’s done over the years by treating her at one of these fabulous restaurants. The 10 restaurants featured on this list are some of the best-of-the-best New Jersey has to offer. Book your reservations now before these spots fill-up.
Lincoln Harbor, Pier D-T Weehawken, NJ
We may have killed our taste buds at the First Annual NYC Hot Sauce Expo this past weekend in Williamsburg, Brooklyn! The event featured the “hottest” artisanal sauces from across the country. It was a beautifully warm weekend out and it felt even warmer as soon as we started tasting. It got a little crazy when we boldly decided to try each vendor’s spiciest sauces. Although we have a high tolerance for heat, not every sauce was spicy. There were interesting combinations of flavors such as a strawberry habanera sauce and pepper jellies. While most of the vendors served their sauces on little spoons, we were grateful for the ones who served their sauces with crackers, cheese, or pretzels to hopefully prevent the ulcers we were likely giving ourselves.
Being of Cuban descent and having eaten varieties of Latin American food throughout my entire life, there isn’t much that can surprise me within this genre of cuisine. My understanding of most Latin American food is greasy, usually fried, comfortable, and predictable. When I was asked to visit Bernie’s LA Café, my expectations were not very high. Boy, was I mistaken! Named after proprietor Bernie Matz, also known for Lincoln Road’s Café at Books & Books, Bernie’s LA Café has been considered the Best Organic Latin American Cuisine and the owner of the Best Cuban Sandwich by the Miami New Times. Bernie’s is the kind of restaurant that offers something for everyone with its array of vegan, vegetarian, and straight up meat-loving options.
I am one of those who likes to let my palate travel the gastronomic globe. If asked, I will always gravitate towards dishes from far away lands, even for breakfast. I am sure I’m not alone in my tastes, especially living in the United States, a country that has stereotypically been down there with the British Isles when it comes to being known for good food. A conversation with any foreigner about American cuisine usually includes a variation on the statement “But Americans don’t really have a cuisine...I mean, you can’t really call hotdogs a cuisine.”
New York undoubtedly plays host to some of the best authentic Mexican restaurants in the country and with Cinco de Mayo fast approaching it is time to pick your chosen festive spot to while away the holiday. Spanning all budgets, Joonbug counts down five such places.
Casa Mezcal: The joint vision of Guillermo Olguin, a well known Mexican painter, and the young entrepeneur, Ignacio Carballido, Casa Mezcal will be celebrating Cinco de Mayo from Friday, May 3rd to Sunday, May 5th. Full of Mexican curiosities and spanning three floors, the three day blow-out will feature $5 beers, shots and margaritas, not to mention some of tastiest food and a tequila and mezcal menu that would put most wine lists to shame.
We all know that the best cure for a weekend hangover is to wake up and just keep drinking! Boozy brunches are all the rage, but right now, there's an even more popular trend popping up at restaurants all over the city. Do-It-Yourself bars allow patrons to concoct the Bloody Mary or Mimosa of their dreams and flex their bartending skills. Check out what restaurants in the city are dying for you to come get in for drunch...I mean, brunch.
Caffeine overload! Joonbug’s still got the caffeine jitters from attending the 8th Annual Coffee & Tea Festival NYC. We practically traveled the world of cocoa farms and tea plantations. The event was held at the 69th Regiment armory and was jam packed with 60 exhibitors from everywhere, Puerto Rico, India, China, and Africa to name a few. Some non-coffee and tea companies also made an appearance.
Here are the top three unique coffee and tea products Joonbug came across:
- ULIV Java, which makes coffee infused with herbs and teas. The company started when Mary realized that even though she didn’t like green tea, it didn’t mean she couldn’t get the health benefits. She approached her nutritionist friend, Kathleen, and together they created ULIV brand for people who don’t like herbal teas but still want to get its health benefits. ULIVE Lean is one of the products that is blended with herbs known for helping weight loss, increasing metabolism, and burning fat. Check it out, We bought a bag and have been drinking it every morning!
- Stella Artois, infused their beer with tea… ummmm amazing, the tea flavor was subtle but we enjoyed it nonetheless. You probably have to have an affinity for tea to enjoy this product. Since iced teas are such a great drink for a hot day, combine that with beer, and you have a bangin’ summer beverage to drink on a rooftop, balcony, or during those Hampton’s weekend trips with your friends.
- Press Tea, always makes their tea fresh and is pressed like coffee. They were sampling products that will be sold at their store opening this May in the West Village. You can check out a video of how they make the tea on their Facebook. They also make their own cream that is sometimes used to top off your drink. I say always get the cream on top!
Now that the weather has finally warmed up, you’ll want nothing more than to be outdoors in the sunshine and breathing that fresh spring-scented air. Dining al fresco at a sidewalk café is always a nice way to relax on the weekends but the view isn’t always appealing. Who wants to look at people cleaning up after their dogs and inhaling taxi cab exhaust while they eat lunch? Thanks to the hundreds of thousands of high rises in the city, you’re options are numerous if you want to eat outside but without the distractions of the streets of Manhattan. Here are five of our favorite rooftop eateries and lounges to help you escape from the city’s hustle and bustle this spring.