I’m glad to be a contributor to Hudson Valley Restaurant Week’s coverage of its galaxy of culinary stars. Personally, I am pleased if I manage to boil pasta to a point at where it might be confused for al dente, but I am a veritable savant when it comes to making dinner reservations. So, I was enthused when Liz Johnson presented me with the chance to review Café Barcel, I regard to be among the leaders of the revival of fine cuisine in Hudson Valley.
After living in the West Village for six years and also being exposed to an endless, eclectic array of savory and sweet concoctions inspired by nearly all of the globe’s cultures, I find it exciting that the region of my upbringing has a restaurant scene that is no longer defined solely by Iron Chef-slayer Peter Kelly. With the help of Liz Johnson’s reporting, Small Bites, and personal relationships with some of Hudson Valley’s young chefs and restaurateurs, I’ve discovered a burgeoning hotbed of gastronomic talent.
From Port Chester to Piermont, Manhattan’s upstate enclave has blossomed with creative restaurants that take full advantage of the area’s abundance of fresh, sustainable ingredients. The Hudson Valley’s reputation as being the de facto home of foie gras, the fact that it is home to the finest culinary school in the nation, and simply its natural beauty all make it entirely deserving of a thriving culinary scene.
I am a writer, wear white collars during weekdays (during certain economic periods), and am an Epicurean by nature. Forgive me for distorting a Descartes supposition, but as far as I’m concerned, “I think, therefore I eat.”