FEATURE: I am happy to report that the Virtual Gourmet is linking up
with four excellent travel sites:
"Kings of Hollywood": Clark
Gable, Van Heflin, Gary Cooper, Jimmy Stewart (circa 1955)
QUESTIONS? TO REACH JOHN MARIANI WRITE
ARCHIVE: Readers may now access
Archive of all past newsletters--each annotated--dating back to July,
2003, by simply clicking on www.johnmariani.com/archive
UN-SUBSCRIBE: You may subscribe anyone you wish
to this newsletter--free of charge--by
CARE WHAT YOU BELIEVE ABOUT FOOD AND DRINK!
By Mort Hochstein
NEW YORK CORNER:
BRASSERIE CELEBRATES 50TH
CARE WHAT YOU BELIEVE
ABOUT FOOD AND DRINK!
By Mort Hochstein
food world is rich in myths, often crafted to glamorize the product.
One of my favorites tells of the shepherd boy taking his lunch in a
cave in the mountains above Montpelier A comely shepherd girl strolled
by and he dropped everything to pursue her. A few days
later he returned to the cave and found his cheese transformed, blue
veined and succulent. Voila! Roquefort! Or so the cheese
people would have us believe.
Then there’s Dom Pérignon and the quote
attributed to him on tasting what the world grew to know as
Champagne: “Come quickly! I am drinking the stars! While the monk
worked diligently to improve the quality of Champagne, he was not the
first to make it, nor did he make that glorious statement, which first
appeared in an advertisement in the late 1880’s.
I was reminded of the shepherd boy and Dom Pérignon
other apocryphal tales of food discoveries when Jack Czarnecki, the
mushroom maven of Dayton, Oregon, told me how he had come to make
natural white truffle oil. Truffle oil is widely used to add flavor to
pastas and eggs and salads. “But, says Czarnecki, “what is currently
sold as truffle oil is olive oil with flavoring and truffle
aroma. And much of it is dirty and tastes like cabbage, not
truffles. Urbani does the real thing, “he declares, “but there are few
others and certainly none produced in this country.”
a trained microbiologist, says his magical moment came when he opened a
package of Oregon truffles he was carrying to an
agricultural conference. The parcel also contained a steak left
over from his restaurant which he’d been planning to finish before the
meeting. “When I opened the package,” he says, “the steak was
suffused with “an overwhelmingly lovely aroma of truffles.
“The gas from
the truffles totally permeated the cooked meat and all of a sudden I
figured out the way to bottle clean, true truffle oil. After this
epiphany, Czarnecki applied his culinary and microbiology training to
create a limited production, expensive ($30 for a
five-ounce bottle) white oil based on native Oregon truffles,
which has is served in many West Coast restaurants.
He now holds license number one from the Oregon Department of
Agriculture for white truffle oil.
Absinthe is a
drink surrounded by myths, both favorable and devastating. Artists and
fellow bohemians in the late 1800’s rhapsodized over the spirit they
called their muse, the "green fairy," shown below in a fanciful
rendering. Some of the sheen rusted away when it also became the drink
of the poor and in 1905 the anti-absinthe crowd seized on the
tragedy of a Swiss laborer who killed his family and tried to
kill himself after downing a few shots. Of course the man had
also put away a buffet tableful of other spirits but the partisans used
his death to catapult an anti-absinthe crusade which resulted, with a
few exceptions, in a worldwide ban.
It could be found in backstreet stores in
Spain, Czechoslovakia and Sweden, and slipped past customs into the
United States, and many absinthe fans did just that. In
2007 lawmakers took a second look and lifted
bans on the production and sale of Absinthe. No
more searching out the odd bottle in obscure places, no more worried,
furtive trips through customs. Today more than two thousand firms produce absinthe and it
is up on store counters, big and bold Now that it is widely
available, much of the romance has slipped away, although producers try
to spike interest with fanciful brand names such as Le Tourment Vert
and, inevitably, a specialty drink called Absinthe Alibi.
But my favorite romantic story came recently when I
learned of caviar aquaculture in, of all places, Uruguay. It’s
right out of James Bond. Walter Laclede, a Uruguayan businessman,
had for three decades, furnished equipment to the Soviet
fleet that fished the waters of the South Atlantic. In 1989, in the
final days of the Soviet empire, a friendly Russian captain gave him
top secret information, not about nuclear missiles or security, but
about Soviet aerial surveys which had determined that Uruguay was “the
best place in the world to raise sturgeon for the
production of Ossetra caviar from Russian Sturgeon.”
It was the perfect time to gamble
on sturgeon aquaculture. Extensive
consumption, environmental degradation and overfishing had severely
depleted the supply of sturgeon roe from the Caspian Sea and turned
those heavily fished waters into a disaster area. Laclede made several
trips to Russia to confer with skilled ichthyologists but it was not
until 1992, that he was able to locate and import fertilized Siberian
sturgeon roe to start the project. The collapse of the
Soviet Union made fish eggs nearly impossible to track down legally.
Not only was the
supply dry, but the potential change in hemispheres concerned fishery
biologists. Sturgeon, one of the oldest and largest fish species with
fossils dated to 200 million years ago, are native only to the northern
hemisphere. Potential diseases, disorientation and unforeseen
conditions of the water could easily kill these delicate giants. The
idea of farmed caviar seemed to be a bust before a fin touched the
water. But a Russian contact found a supply of fertilized eggs
which prospered in the foreign waters of Uruguay.
Black River, the name given to
the new company (below),
harvested its first crop for export in late 2000. “Its quality was not
what we see today,” says Graham Gaspard, CEO of Black River. “We’re
giving the sturgeon 9 to 11 years, two to four years longer than in the
past, before we take their roe, since mature fish make better caviar."
Historically, 98% of caviar has come from wild
sturgeon, and only
2% from farmed, but that ratio is changing rapidly. Domestic white
sturgeon have been successfully cultivated in northern California
decades, although efforts to farm Russian species in the
Canada have been hindered by high startup costs and a muddy or
off-taste which seems to come with farmed caviar. At
the Uruguayan facility, the water moves by the pull of gravity as it
flows from the expansive Lake Bulgaria to the Río Negro. Unlike
many aquaculture projects, the current changes constantly, and fish
never swim twice in the same water. More than 50 million gallons move
naturally through the farm daily. The Lacledes built canals
alongside the Río Negro to replicate a spawning river and the
natural migration of a sturgeon from the feeding grounds of a lake or
sea to an upstream egg drop. “We call it wild raised,” Gaspard says,
“like cattle that wander the range. These are not like goldfish in a
pond getting fat.”
Hochstein, former editor and producer for NBC News and the Today Show,
and former managing editor of Nation's Restaurant News, writes on
wine, food and travel for Wine Spectator, Wine Business Monthly,
Saveur and other food and wine publications.
NEW YORK CORNER
BRASSERIE CELEBRATES 50TH
by John Mariani
100 East 53rd Street
month it will be 50 years--a half century--since Brasserie opened
its doors in Mies van der Rohe's magnificent Seagram Building, and,
like its illustrious sister
restaurant The Four Seasons on the other side of the plaza, it has
never lost the spirit of the International Style that seems as modern
as any place in
NYC, despite occasional change in décor, the most after a 2000
that destroyed the original Philip Johnson design.
This fall, Brasserie will celebrate its
kicking off on Thursday, September 17th, with "A (Free)
Taste of Brasserie"--yes, a free
lunch--open to all guests who reserve a seat between 11:30 am–2:30
pm, with many of
Brasserie’s favorites, including French onion soup and steak frites; the first one
hundred callers not to get a coveted
seat on the 17th will instead receive a rain check for a complimentary
“$19.59 after 9” dinner.
The restaurant will also feature a
Vintage Cocktail Menu, and on September 30, a "5
Decades of Brasserie Cuisine Dinner"--5 courses
of archival dishes from Brasserie’s five decades: La Caille
Brillat Savarin, Le Filet de Sole ‘Lucullus’ and Le Crottin de
Chavignol, et al., prepared
by Chef Luc Dimnet,
who is also bringing back The Brasserie Burger,
made the same way it was back in
1959, on a baguette spread with garlic
butter, the burger stuffed with a blend of
Gruyère and Swiss cheeses.
Associates, then in its heyday, opened Brasserie in 1959 as an
all-night evocation of Parisian brasseries, it was a far cry from any
other NYC options for getting something to eat and drink after
midnight, which were pretty grim beaneries and saloons. Its
design, with a dramatic stairway leading to a subterranean dining room,
was as modern as Johnson (who'd never before designed a
restaurant) could make it, clean but colorful minimalism. In 1971 Forbes Magazine's Restaurant Guide
called it "New York's most sophisticated unrich restaurant,"
meaning that, like the Automats of the past, it drew people from
midtown businesses at lunch and for drinks, tourists at night, and all
sorts of nightcrawlers after hours. It was a time when Restaurant
Associates also ran The Forum of the Twelve Caesars, Zum Zum, Charlie
O's, La Fonda del Sol, and the Four Seasons--all of them revolutionary
in their thematic ways. Now owned by the Patina Group (which also runs The
Sea Grill, Naples 45, and La
Fonda Del Sol in NYC and Patina Restaurant in L.A., among others)
and redesigned by architects Diller + Scofidio, Brasserie is still
sleek and you still enter downwards to a space that spreads to a bar
of the right and alcove-like booths on the left. You are always greeted
cordially, even if there's a line out the door for breakfast, and the
waitstaff is some of the best trained in the business.
Over the years
I've always found that Brasserie was, well, dependable: good food,
great setting, not very expensive, open late. It's no longer open 24/7,
but you can come in for breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner till 11
PM. Recently my dinner there was at a nice, proper 7 PM,
and I was delighted to see that 50 years have passed and Brasserie not
only shows no signs of wear but actually is as sprightly as ever,
eclipsing in décor and ambiance its closest imitator, Lever
House restaurant across the street, another one-floor-down restaurant
in an historic building, now being transformed into an Italian place.
Brasserie's food has never been better.
The menu is fairly short (the merely ample
winelist too short),
and while there are few surprises on it, there are the classic
signature dishes, all based on French brasserie models, along with more
contemporary dishes. What is
so wonderful about them is not only that they have endured through
fashion and fads but that they are among the best of their kind in New
York. The kind of well-deserved praise that is heaped upon a
place like Keith McNally's Minetta
Tavern eludes Brasserie because it has been doing what it does so
very well for so long.
Thus, you won't find a better onion soup
gratinée in the city, rich and dark, caramelized to a savory
sweetness, layered with just the right abundance of Gruyère
cheese. Tuna tartare with coriander, ginger, and cucumber
takes no backseat to anyone else's, and the foie gras torchon is all
creamy goodness, with petit
kügelhopf bread (reflecting Dimnet's is Alsatian
background) and a sweet-sour sherry gastrique.
course, you might just go with the lavish presentation of shellfish,
piled high in tiers on ice--mussels, clams, oysters, lobster, crab,
shrimp, and snails, with various dipping sauces. This is the kind
of thing that Parisians, ravenous at three in the morning, would have
an all-night brasserie (damn few left even there!), and New Yorkers
have the same cravings. Only you have to sate those cravings before
midnight at Brasserie.
I loved the plump, crisp, greaseless softshell
crabs with chickpea salad, okra beignets, and a rich
chorizo-saffron emulsion, and Dimnet's sea scallops with morels, cippolini, pattypan squash, and
Champagne beurre blanc are
For main courses there is a daily grilled whole
fish, seasoned with herbes de
provence and served with green beans and
a sauce vièrge. The
roasted organic chicken with green beans, forest
mushrooms, and its own pan juices is comfort food in excelsis, so
satisfying at any time of the day or night. There is a côte de boeuf for two I want
to try next time, but I wasn't thrilled with the New York strip
sirloin, not because it wasn't good but because the beef itself lacked
marbling fat and therefore flavor. It comes with a choice of various
sauces. The accompanying pommes
terrific, and there's plenty of butter in the mashed potatoes to give
them a lot of flavor.
Ken Larsen's desserts are outstanding at
Brasserie, from irresistible apple cinnamon beignets with hot apple
cider to autumn spiced gingerbread with Riesling poached pears and five
spice panna cotta. They also
bake fresh cookies here.
So, when you see the recent closings of
wonderful old restaurants like Café des Artistes, Florent,
Giambelli 50th, and
René Pujol, it is satisfying to know that Brasserie is alive and
thriving, as buoyant a place as it was when "Mad Men" would go there
for three-martini lunches and musicians at midnight after their
shows. Some places grow old and tired; Brasserie just grows
better and better.
Brasserie is open for
breakfast Mon.-Fri, brunch Sat. & Sun., lunch Mon.-Fri., and dinner
nightly. Dinner appetizers $10-$17, main courses $18-$42.
BINGE DRINKING ON CAMPUS?!!?
WE'RE SHOCKED, SHOCKED!!!!
Trade Commission attorney criticized a Anheuser-Busch InBev NV for a
marketing campaign that features Bud Light cans decorated with
college-team colors. Janet Evans, a senior FTC attorney who oversees
alcohol advertising, said the agency had "grave concern" that the
campaign could encourage underage and binge drinking on college
WRITING 101: DO NOT DRINK WHAT YOU'RE
WRITING ABOUT WHILE WRITING ABOUT IT
spirit unto herself. She’s a loner. Gin can gnaw on the
back of your neck till she nigh-on draws blood, and she can just as
easily kiss you softly behind each ear, stroke the back of your
shivering hand, and make you know that everything’s going to be okay. .
. Gin won’t be seen dead with the loud, brash braggart down the end of
the bar. Gin likes a little foreplay before she commits to going
all the way. Tease gin with elderflower cordial, for instance,
and she’ll flirt for a while before she takes her blouse off.
There’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that the blouse is coming off, but
Gin takes her own good time. . . . She can just sit quietly at
the end of the bar, faded jeans and a plain white T-shirt, secure in
the knowledge that only the guys and gals who know exactly what they
want, how they want it, and how they’re gonna go about getting it, will
ever approach her."--"Thoughts from a Gin
Gary "Gaz" Regan (shown in photo at
* On Sept.
13, in NYC, New Amsterdam Market will take place
on South Street, between Beekman Street and Peck Slip in Lower
Manhattan from 11:00am to 4:00pm - at the site of the historic Fulton
Fish Market, in order to revive the indoor public market with butchers,
grocers, mongers, and other small businesses who will support regional
agriculture. Open to the public at no charge; porchetta by Sara Jenkins
and other guest cooks. Visit www.newamsterdammarket.org.
* Beginning on Sept. 14 and continuing on every Tues. & Wed.
nights, Chez Papa Resto in San Francisco hosts “Wine Nights
with the Wine Director.” From 5:30 to 10:00 p.m., premier wines
selected by Wine Director George Aknin will offered for up to 55% off
the current list price, plus there will be no corkage fee charged on
these evenings. Call 415- 546-4134; chezpapasf.com.
14, in NYC, the Rose Club at the Plaza will be
hosting the first Ron Abuelo/Rum Jumbie Mixology Contest. NYC’s top
mixologists will compete for a chance to win a trip to Miami, FL
to participate in the second and final stage of the contest, held at
the Rumbar at the Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne on Oct. 15, and the
grand winner of this contest will receive an all-expense paid trip to
Panama to visit the Varela Hermanos distillery. No cover charge, cash
bar only. Call 212-941-5595.
* From now
until the end of November, Nick &
Stef’s Steakhouse in Los
Angeles will be offering a 10th Anniversary Tasting menu, 3
courses at $39.95 incl. a choice of salad (wedge, classic Caesar
or Tomato), an entrée (filet mignon, organic chicken or oakwood
grilled salmon) and a dessert selection of lemon meringue pie or
a trio of gelato or sorbet. Call 213-680-0330.
* On Sept.
15 in Chicago, Mundial Cocina Mestiza will
celebrate Mexican Independence Day with a special 5-course dinner
by Chef Hector Marcial, featuring an exclusive sampling of 4
Boutique Tequila's and one Mezcal individually paired with each
course. $75 pp Call 312-491-9908; visit
September 15-3 Chef Aulie Bunyarataphan of Bangkok Joe’s on the Georgetown Waterfront in D.C.
will offer a 6th Anniversary 5-course tasting menu for $36.66, a
compilation of her most popular dishes over the years, with a
free Siam Sunrays cocktail, Thailand’s first signature cocktail,
developed by Chef Aulie’s nephew in Thailand. Bangkok Joe’s also
offers half-price wine nights on Mondays and Tuesdays. Call
September in London sees
the launch of a second masterclass at Le
Bouchon Breton in Old Spitalfields Market and this time it’s
oysters paired with a handpicked Champagne and white wines. .
The first class will run on Sept. 25 and will run for 5 months on
the last Friday of the month with a break in December for Christmas.
The class costs £60 pp. Call 08000 191 704.
Sept.15-19 in Sausalito, CA,
Poggio will be
celebrating "Festa del Pesce" with a special Italian seafood menu of Crudo (raw/marinated/cured) and Cotto (cooked) antipasti featuring
mostly local fish from the Pacific coastline prepared on the wood-fired
grill, cured, marinated and baked in salt. Call 415-332-7771.
* On Sept.
16, in Washington D.C., Art and Soul at The Liaison Capitol Hill,
will host its fall Patio Barbeque Feast. The large fire pit on
the restaurant’s patio enables guests to continue dining outdoors
amidst the fall foliage. The BBQ feast will be served every Wednesday
throughout the fall and includes Smoked Baby Back Ribs, Beef Brisket,
Carolina Barbeque Wings, Coleslaw, Cornbread, Baked Beans, and a duo of
unique barbeque sauces. $25 pp, call 202-393-7777 or visit
Sept.17 and Oct. 15 in Yountville,
CA, Brix restaurant will
host a series of “street food” dinner events called “Brix Unpaved.”
Sept. 7 will be a Thai-themed evening called “One Night in Bangkok” and
Oct. 15 will be an Italian-themed evening called “Street Feasts of
Sicily.” Each evening will take place at outdoors at Brix restaurant
from 6:00pm-9:30pm and tickets can be bought for $35 in advance at
www.brix.com under the “Brix Unpaved” logo. Call 707-944-2749.
* On Sept.
20, in NYC, il Buco celebrates its 15th
anniversary at its 6th annual pig and apple festival. Chef
Ignacio Mattos and staff start a bonfire on Bond Street between
Lafayette and Bowery, where they will slow-roast a 200 lb heritage
breed Crossabaw Pig. Starting at 1pm, friends and family alike
will line up early for a buffet of all things pig, including porchetta
panini, apple pork sausages and apple ricotta fritters. $20 per
plate. Call 212-533-1932.
* On Sept. 21 in NYC,
Alto will hold a dinner
with winemaker Federico Ceretto. $135 app. Call
* From Sept.21-25, "National Wine Week" will be celebrated in NYC at Quality Meats, Smith & Wollensky,
Maloney & Porcelli, Park Avenue Autumn and The Post House. Ten wines are
served for $10 with the cost of lunch each day. For more
Sept. 23 in NYC, chef
David Burke will host a Leblon cachaca 4-course dinner as part of his David Burke at Bloomingdale’s
beverage series. $39 pp. Call 212-705-3800;
Sept. 24-26 in Denver, The Great American Beer Festival
will be held, with 450 breweries from 47 states and more than 2,000
beers. Educational areas include the Beer and Food Pavilion, Farm to
Table Pavilion, Inside the Brewers Studio and much more. Tickets are
$55. Visit www.GreatAmericanBeerFestival.com or call 303-447-0816.
* On Sept.
25, in Boston, Chef Rachel
Klein welcomes the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston to Aura Restaurant at the Seaport Hotel
for "Fine Dining, Family-Style," a night of family-friendly dining and
art-focused activities. Call 617-385-4300.
Sept.26&27 in Costa Smeralda,
Sardinia, Starwood’s Cervo
Hotel hosts the first ever Porto Cervo Food Festival with
special dinners prepared by renowned Italian chefs including Michelin
starred Chef Giulio Terrinoni of Acquolina Hostaria restaurant in Rome
and Chef Peter Brunel of Chiesa Restaurant in Trento, incl. a tasting
exhibition of Italian and Sardinian culinary delicacies. For more
information on the festival, accommodation or dinner packages visit,
www.portocervofoodfestival.com; call +39 (0789) 931612/606.
* From Sept. 26-27 The
Wine Fair returns for Eighth Edition with 500+ producers and
1,500 wines representing 20 countries, at the Miami Beach Convention
Center. $75 pp. with proceeds benefiting Educate Tomorrow. Call
866-887-WINE or visit www.miamiwinefair.com.
On Sept 27 in Boston, Sel de la Terre Back Bay marks its
1st anniversary with an “Anniversary Harvest Dinner to Beat
Hunger” with proceeds to support Massachusetts Share Our Strength’s
regional hunger relief and food education programs. The 7-course
dinner will be prepared by 7 Boston area top chefs, with a live
auction emceed by food writer Annie B. Copps. $125 general
seating, $250 limited chef’s table seating.Call Carrie Weed at
On Sept. 27 in Welches, OR,
presents the 9th annual Wild About
Game Festival at the Resort at the Mountain. Pacific NW chefs
compete in a wild game cook-off and pick up tips from last year’s
winners at cooking demos. Guest judges incl. Chris Cosentino from
Incanto in San Francisco and Seattle’s Tom Douglas. A Wild Game dinner
tops off the day’s events. $25 for day event; $55 for dinner. Call
consider this the best
and savviest blog of its kind on the web. Potter is a columnist
for USA Weekend, Diversion, Laptop and
Luxury Spa Finder,
a contributing editor for Ski
and a frequent contributor to National
Geographic Traveler, ForbesTraveler.com and Elle Decor. "I’ve designed this
site is for people who take their travel seriously," says Potter.
"For travelers who want to learn about special places but don’t
necessarily want to pay through the nose for the privilege of
staying there. Because at the end of the day, it’s not so much about
five-star places as five-star experiences." To go to his
blog click on the logo below: THIS
WEEK: NIAGARA FALLS WITH THE FAMILY; SPAWATCH DEBUTS ; THE NEW YORKER
HOTEL FOR LESS.
Las Vegas is the new on-line site for Virtual Gourmet
A. Curtas., who since 1995 has been commenting on the Las Vegas food
scene and reviewing restaurants for Nevada Public Radio. He is
the restaurant critic for KLAS TV, Channel 8 in Las Vegas, and his past
reviews can be accessed at KNPR.org.
Click on the logo below to go directly to his site.
Tennis Resorts Online:
A Critical Guide to the World's
Best Tennis Resorts and Tennis Camps,
published by ROGER COX, who has spent more than two decades writing
about tennis travel, including a 17-year stretch for Tennis magazine. He has also
written for Arthur Frommer's Budget
Travel, New York Magazine,
Travel & Leisure, Esquire, Money, USTA Magazine, Men's Journal, and The Robb Report. He has
authored two books-The World's
Best Tennis Vacations (Stephen Greene Press/Viking Penguin,
1990) and The Best Places to Stay in the Rockies (Houghton
Mifflin, 1992 & 1994), and the Melbourne (Australia) chapter to the
Wall Street Journal Business
Guide to Cities of the
Pacific Rim (Fodor's Travel Guides, 1991).
Family Travel Forum (FTF), whose motto is "Have Kids, Still Travel!",
is dedicated to the ideals, promotion and support of travel with
children. Founded by business professionals John Manton and Kyle
McCarthy with first class travel industry credentials and global family
travel experience, the independent, family-supported FTF will provide
its members with honest, unbiased information, informed advice and
practical tips; all designed to make traveling a rewarding, healthy,
safe, better value and hassle-free experience for adults and children
who journey together. Membership in FTF will lead you to new worlds of
adventure, fun and learning. Join the movement.
All You Need to Know
Before You Go
MARIANI'S VIRTUAL GOURMET NEWSLETTER is published weekly. Editor/Publisher: John Mariani.
Contributing Writers: Robert Mariani,
John A. Curtas, Edward Brivio, Mort
Hochstein, Suzanne Wright, and Brian Freedman. Contributing
Photographers: Galina Stepanoff-Dargery, Bobby Pirillo. Technical
Advisor: Gerry McLoughlin.
John Mariani is a columnist for Esquire, Bloomberg News, and Diversion.
He is author of The Encyclopedia
of American Food & Drink (Lebhar-Friedman), The Dictionary
of Italian Food and Drink (Broadway), and, with his wife Galina, the
award-winning Italian-American Cookbook (Harvard Common
Any of John Mariani's books below
may be ordered from amazon.com by clicking on the cover image.
newest book, written with my brother Robert Mariani, is a memoir of our
years growing up in the North
Bronx. It's called Almost
Golden because it re-visits an idyllic place and time in our
so many wonderful things seemed possible.
For those of you who don't think
the Bronx as “idyllic,” this
book will be a revelation. It’s
about a place called the Country Club area, on the shores of Pelham Bay. It was a beautiful
neighborhood filled with great friends
and wonderful adventures that helped shape our lives.
It's about a culture, still vibrant, and a place that is still almost
the same as when we grew up there.
Robert and I think you'll enjoy this
very personal look at our Bronx childhood. It is not
yet available in bookstores, so to purchase
a copy, go to amazon.com
or click on Almost Golden.
© copyright John Mariani 2009