New Yorkers should feel right at home in Washington DC for numerous reasons ranging from culture, points of interest, fine restaurants, to a first class mass transit system. You really don’t need a car because Washington’s subway, better known as the Metro, can get you to almost anywhere in the Beltway. The trains are clean, the service is frequent, and it only costs $1.35 during off-peak hours.
If you haven’t been there, it is easy to have an erroneous image of North Carolina’s capital, Raleigh. While there are still plenty of downtown mom-and-pop stores, the city is a far cry from the fictitious Mayberry of the 1960s TV classic, “The Andy Griffith Show.”
Tampa is often overlooked by potential Florida vacationers because it lacks Miami’s glitz and is squarely in the shadow of Orlando, an hour drive east, when traffic moves on I-4. That is a shame because Tampa is far more relaxing to visit than the aforementioned Sunshine State neighbors and there’s plenty to see and do here.
After three full days of sampling some of the best foods in the world, and some mediocre wannabes, we have come up with our completely subjective list of the Top 10 New Food Discoveries. Agree with us, or not, the following food items will whet your appetite and encourage you to pester your local supermarket to expand their product selection.
In 1969 Tucson received unexpected worldwide fame when Paul McCartney sang the lyric “Jo Jo left his home in Tucson, Arizona for some California grass” in one of the Beatles’ last hits, “Get Back.” These days Californians and many others are coming to Tucson to either live or spend long vacations because of its balmy climate and its low cost of living.
Forty years ago San Diego was a sleepy navy town that most regarded as a far-flung Los Angeles suburb. Fast-forward to today and San Diego is now California’s second largest city that is no longer in L.A.’s shadow. While San Diego still has what many regard to be the most beautiful climate in the country, there have been social costs that have come along with its rapid growth. The high cost of living here would make even a jaded New Yorker blush and the standstill rush hour traffic makes the Long Island Expressway look like the Daytona Speedway in comparison. Nonetheless San Diego remains an excellent getaway.
Most cities would be insulted if they were referred to as “cow towns,” but not Fort Worth, which sees the term as a badge of honor for striving to maintain the image of the Old West, and for celebrating the lifestyle of that sadly fading American icon, the cowboy.
Dallas officials concede that most travelers think of the city as a business destination rather than a place where one would willingly spend leisure time. While that may once have when it was the financial center for oil, Dallas now has plenty to keep tourists busy.
An annual sporting ritual heralding Autumn is the US Tennis Open, where most folks were surprised to see Andy Roddick crash out in the first round this year. On his feet while he did were sneakers provided by his new apparel sponsor Babolat, a French athletics wear firm who had Roddick on hand to help them introduce their products in the US at a sumptuous luncheon at the Grand Hyatt Hotel on 42nd Street. Their manufacturing partner, the Gallic rubber giant Michelin, had a launch event of their own on November 2nd, when the long-anticipated Michelin Guide: New York City Restaurants & Hotels 2006 was presented at the Guggenheim Museum. 1000 First Edition numbered guides were made available to event attendees (I got # 759), and among them Wylie Dufresne told me he was “very pleased” with the one star awarded to his place WD~50. Less ecstatic was Daniel Bouloud, who opined that “they messed up the two stars, they messed up the one stars, but they got the three stars” – a comment on his ventures Daniel and Cafe Bouloud receiving one and two stars respectively. Assuming Le Bernardin’s three-star rating was satisfactory, I asked Eric Ripert how he liked the evening’s catering, supplied by Restaurant Associates; “I didn’t taste the food,” he tersely replied, which spoke for itself.
I’ve always been a big fan of British band The Stranglers (in fact, I met frontman Hugh Cornwell and drummer Jet Black when I worked security for a show they did at Webster Hall years ago in support of their then current LP release “The Raven”), and so, when I had opportunity to attend the January 10th launch party for a magazine entitled “Skin Deep”, it was their hit tune of the same name from the “Aural Sculpture” album that buzzed through my head most of the evening.