Although many would envy the fame and clout of New York City’s mayor, the true power of Manhattan lies in the crown of its Brisket King. Each year, contestants from local restaurants and upstate farms compete for the title during a barbecue cook-off judged by celebrity chefs and brisket experts, vying for top honors as they roast tender cuts of beef from their unique recipes. All the while, attendees sample the succulent meats and sip libations from a bar stocked with everything from beer to “Bullshot,” a cocktail of vodka-infused brisket juice. To crown the champion, a panel of qualified judges decide the winner, relying on their expertise in distinguishing a basket of perfectly cooked brisket from a plate of steamed broccoli.
Some may credit the buttery bun or the chive-speckled mayonnaise, but in an interview with Food and Wine, Ed McFarland insists the success of his lobster roll lies entirely in the meat. He simmers the ultra-fresh morsels of lobster until they’re tender and juicy before adorning them with a simple dressing made of mayo, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. He then piles the meat onto a warm Pepperidge Farm roll until it spills over onto the plate, then arranges it next to a nest of thick, hand-cut fries and slices of homemade pickles. When he isn’t whipping up the much-lauded rolls, Ed extends his culinary expertise to a variety of seafood specialties—from crispy calamari to a hearty lobster pot pie¬¬––crafted using fresh herbs and vegetables plucked directly from his own garden.
Out in the lively dining room, guests bite into warm lobster rolls and nibble on shellfish from the raw bar. On busy nights, guests gather outside to wait for a coveted seat inside the intimate space, since the restaurant staff does not accept reservations or promises to shovel the snow from their driveway for a week.
Kristin Hanson began her journey toward fine jewelry-making mastery by walking down a path less traveled. Raised in a home where expression was encouraged, she spread her roots to the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Then she took a leap. She traveled to the wilds of Colorado to apprentice under master goldsmith Harold O'Connor, learning his nuanced, perfectionist techniques and method for training squirrels to be workshop assistants. Her studies then carried her to Florence and Tuscany before drawing her back to the East Coast.
Kristin's life-inspired works embody the contemporary with forms that highlight the innate beauty of her materials. Her trademark couture jewelry has caught the eye of such publications as Lucky and InStyle. In short courses and intensive programs, she hews to a teaching philosophy that fosters others' styles instead of encouraging copycats of her own. Except during special exhibits, Kristin handcrafts each piece in 60 Reade, her 6,000-square-foot Tribeca gallery, and specializes in conflict-free pink diamonds from an Australian mine.
Eight Mile Creek unfurls across two floors, transporting New York diners down under with an exotic spread of Australian pub-style cuisine and imported spirits. Splashed in the flickering glow of candlelight, bronze-tiled walls establish the restaurant's rustic feel, as guests browse menus stocked with grilled-kangaroo skewers, burgers, and elegant entrees such as racks of Aussie lamb. On the first floor, live music further inflates casual airs with energized tunes, and themed holiday parties offer visitors an alternative to stuffy office banquets and get-togethers with socially awkward snowmen. During summer months, Aussie beers and New Zealand wines accompany warm breezes on an outdoor patio, where a wooden deck and an exposed-brick walls combine to create a tranquil dining experience.
Shibumi Spa, led by director Soli Davis—an acclaimed aesthetician and stylist with more than 30 years' experience—specializes in holistic treatments for both body and spirit. During the one-hour BIONOVA custom facial, the BIONOVA skin-care product, containing the same 300 natural elements and ingredients found in human skin, will go to work on the body's freckle farm, ousting dead cells and opening up plugged pores. In addition to its efficiency in exfoliation and extraction, the BIONOVA product is a key ally in the beauty battle against acne armies, wrinkle-warriors, and platoons of poor pigmentation. Included with the BIONOVA treatment is a face/hand massage medley of various styles, including the digit-doting techniques of shiatsu and the tissue-juncture focus of the Ayurvedic marma points massage, ensuring that fingers are ready for next month's full-contact rock-paper-guillotine tournament.