Recipes give insight into a culture, and chef and restaurateur Barbara Sibley deeply understands this seemingly simple concept. Originally born and raised in Mexico City, Barbara furthered a passion for indigenous cuisines while studying anthropology in college. She then devoted years to researching and collecting Mexican recipes from as far back as the 1600s, and in the process, she steadily became an ambassador for the culinary techniques and ingredients that define authentic Mexican cuisine. In addition to sharing this expertise with CBS New York, the Food Network, and cooking classes, Barbara published a collection of 75 recipes in her cookbook—Antojitos: Festive & Flavorful Mexican Small Plates.
If the cookbook is a reference source, then a meal at La Palapa is an immersive learning experience. Barbara drew upon her research as well as her extensive culinary experience when she founded the restaurant, designing a pan-regional menu of familiar staples and little-known gems that the New York Times hailed as "fascinating." Mexico City–style tacos brim with chili-rubbed pork and pineapple or corn sautéed in assertively herbal epazote, and grilled duck breast arrives in a decadently complex Oaxacan mole sauce made with 26 ingredients. Tradition remains of the utmost importance though, and Barbara takes care to hand make everything from cheese to chorizo in-house.
La Palapa takes its name from the Spanish word for the palm-thatched shelters that adorn Mexican beaches: an image that complements the restaurant's casual and inviting ambiance. The dining room manages to embrace its roots by prominently displaying images of Mexico City from the 17th century as well as modern sculptures inspired by pre-Columbian ceramic figures. Although the brickwork archways contribute to this sense of antiquity, La Palapa also features a handful of modern touches, including hourglass-shaped pendant lamps, a jukebox, and levitating barstools.
Just a subway train's throw from Manhattan, City Island seems like a different world?tree-lined banks and sprawling waters that stretch toward the New York City skyline and out into the open Sound. New York Sailing Center's owner Captain Stephen Glenn Card touts the location for its absence of man-made disturbances such as wind shears and strong currents. Captain Card has taught since the 1980s, and continues to lead multiday immersive-sailing classes for everyone from beginners to advanced cruisers and navigators.
Throughout the years, they have developed a fine-tuned training system that combines in-classroom instruction (including practice with a large, moveable boat) and on-water obstacle courses within Eastchester Bay and Long Island Sound. Atop these waters, students practice on Beneteau sailing boats
?twin-rudder vessels that can accommodate beginner's mistakes, and are also the only boats to receive
endorsements from a national sail training organization, such as ASA or US Sailing. As students progress, instructors teach more advanced skills such as bareboat cruising and navigation. They even take some of their brightest pupils on sailing trips to destinations such as Italy or Captain Hook's retirement home.
The scream of skidding tires and the screech of a horn precede the copper taste of adrenaline in your mouth as pigeons and sparrows lift from the sidewalks. Did the sound scare them, or the sight of an onrushing auto? Domenico Pinto doubtless pondered this same question when he established the Ferrari Driving School in 1968. Originally founded to help dyed-in-the-wool and immigrant New Yorkers drive more safely, the school has now expanded to usher more than 6,000 students a year through motorcycle-, truck-, and commercial-driving instruction. No matter the vehicle, Pinto and his family specialize in helping drivers obtain personal licenses and commercial certifications, and learn defensive techniques that help them avoid fender benders or accidentally starting a demolition derby.
There may be a lot of playtime at The Language Workshop for Children, but don't think the students aren't learning; during classes, instructors use songs, games, toys, and more to teach children the basics of tongues such as French, Spanish, and Chinese.
The Language Workshop is the brainchild of François Thibaut, who created the school in 1973 after years of observing how children learned languages. In the same vein, instructors understand that even infants can pick up a second language, and they teach anyone from 6 months to 9 years old in group classes, with private lessons available for older students in certain locations.
Gotham Writers' Workshop teaches more than 7,000 students every year how to tackle and tame the writing process in a creative learning environment. Professional writers help students to develop characters and generate ideas before a structured dialogue encourages classmates to comment on strengths and weakness, improving final drafts and abilities to stand up to playground bullies. Gotham also provides follow-up services and bolsters the communication skills of experienced writers, teenagers, and muffled mummies alike with private instruction and tips found in its book, Writing Movies.
Founded by Dr. LeeAnn Renninger, LifeLabs New York employs the expertise of scientists, artists, and experts in its wide curriculum of creative classes that teach practical life skills. Students learn how to read other's facial micro-expressions, become more engaging conversationalists, and use idea mapping and visual thinking to brainstorm more effectively. Weekly solo adventures, sent to participants via postal mail, set an itinerary for fun, creative missions designed to help adventurers notice new things and add new facets to their personalities.