Category Archives: restaurants

Cash Only

There is nothing I love more than a visual pun. Unless, of course, you add some music in. Then I am just entertained beyond belief.

This sign wins for my favorite of the year. It was on the door of a lovely little coffee shop in Tarrytown, right next to the Tarrytown Music Hall.

As if this were not the double delight of music and graphics for me, it went right over the top with its name… Coffee Labs Roasters. Check out their logo.

That’s right, THAT kind of Lab. The whole place has a Lab theme. Check out the toilet paper holder.

Of course they support sustainability, are Rainforest Alliance Certified and Bird Friendly (I know, bird friendly Labs sound like a bit of a stretch).

You have to love the tagline: Grown Globally. Roasted Locally. I want to marry this coffee place. Or at least sleep with it!

If you are ever in Tarrytown, check them out. Oh, and their coffee is good too.


Filed under carry a camera, music, restaurants

Disco Sushi

This is how my lobster roll came to the table tonight. For 12 bucks you can’t beat that kind of dinner theatre.

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Filed under food, restaurants

Discouraging Pumpkin Abuse

Ok, we get the don’t touch part, but don’t kick?

I like that they said thank you.



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Filed under absurdities, carry a camera, restaurants, signage

Time to Cry Tuesday – Valentino’s on the Green

This week Time to Cry Tuesday takes a different twist. Having safely deposited both of my kids at college halfway across the country, I will focus this week on the joy of work.

Yes, you read that correctly. As a good friend from art school so wisely posted on facebook recently, ‘find something you love and then find someone to bill for it’. Every so often my career takes a turn back towards doing what I truly love; getting involved in a business and helping them to realize their vision for how they should look and feel.

One such client is a fabulous new restaurant and catering venue in the NY area called Valentino’s on the Green. I was hired to create their menus and associated materials. It just so happens that not only did I have the honor of working with this new venue, but one of the partners happens to be one of my dearest friends from High School, Chef Don Pintabona of Tribeca Grill fame. (we did not call him Chef, back then).

To add to the excitement, Don is planning to build a solar-and-biodiesel-powered vertical farm on the property, where he hopes to grow about 80 percent of his raw materials, from mushrooms and potatoes to farmed fish. He also envisions a teaching lab for local schools. How cool is that?

The restaurant is housed in Rudolph Valentino‘s summer home in Bayside Queens (hey, don’t laugh, in the 20s Bayside was like the Hamptons). The renovation is spectacular, the staff is award winning and stellar, the food is to die for. And Sunday night I had the joy of dining there during the Friends and Family opening.

I cannot tell you the thrill of entering that building I have watched turn from a construction site into an elegant restaurant over the past few months and see it filled with people. People who were actually holding my menus! But the most wonderful part of all was to see my dear friend Don – beaming as he walked through the place – at home in a way I have not seen in a very long time. There is nothing better than seeing a dear friend realize a vision and being able to take part in it.

Sometimes work feels like pushing a boulder up the hill. But if you are lucky, other times work is about doing what you love – with people you love – and finding someone to bill for it. It was an honor to work with a team of passionate professionals who truly cared about every single detail that led up to the opening of this restaurant. Don, Giorgio and Deanna, working with you has been a dream! Jimmy, Michael, Antonio, Don C., Lauren, Erin, and the entire staff, thanks for the great night last night, you were all on the top of your game.

So plug, plug, plug, full client/friend disclosure and all that transparency nonsense, you will surely thank me for turning you onto this place. Let’s help them find ‘many some ones to bill for it’. Join me in making this venue the great success I know it will become. Check it out here, or call and make a reservation at 718.352.2300 and tell them that Amy sent you. Do it now before this article hits and they are all booked up. (Oh and if you are looking to throw a party, their upstairs catering room is magnificent!)


Filed under friendship, New York, New York City, relationships, restaurants, Time to Cry Tuesdays

Spring at last!

When you can end a weekend day like this how can you ever complain about anything?

Doesn’t suck.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under carry a camera, photography, restaurants

Print, Press, and the Moscow Mule.

Intriguing title, no?

Tonight I fell in love. In a big way. With a drink (and it’s venue).

Ok, call me shallow but it was the first day of spring. Convertible top down ride into the city, visit to the Grateful Dead exhibit at the New York Historical Society (more on this tomorrow) drinks and apps at a sidewalk cafe and then dinner at what will most probably become my favorite new spot in NY. A big thanks to Mo for telling us about this place.

Print Restaurant is located on 48th Street and 11th Avenue in an old printing building that houses Ink48, a beautiful, extremely green and pet friendly Kimpton Hotel. They even have a jar of dog biscuits at the front desk.

Back to the drink; they serve the Moscow Mule in the most beautiful vessel I have ever put my lips to. This perfect little copper globe is iced to perfection and then filled with vodka, ginger beer and lime juice. This heavenly combination will prove to be extremely dangerous for me this summer. It is the perfect blend of tang and kick. I am not going to lie, I am already craving another.

But the love affair does not end here. The staff was delightful. When I told the waiter I found the name of the drink sort of silly, he went on to tell me of its origin. Vodka first came to the states in the 1930s from Russia. People found it foreign and odd and well… Russian and they did not know what to do with it so they mixed it with lime and ginger beer to make it more palatable. Understatement, again, this drink is scary delicious. I mentioned how much I loved the copper cup and the next time the waiter came to the table he had written down the manufacturer and told told me that they are from the 1950s and could be found on ebay. How much do we love this guy?

Sipping my BDF (best drink forever) in the zen-like atmosphere of this beautiful venue it was hard not to feel at home. It is both chic and unpretentious, as is the menu. The restaurant is committed to supporting local and sustainable farmers – gotta love that. There was not a meal at the table that was not delicious. Fresh, locally grown ingredients, warm and wonderful staff and an addictive beverage… trifecta!

To top off the evening we had the treat of getting a tour of the soon to be open rooftop bar, Press. The photo above is taken from the wrap around terrace. Now THIS is a place you will find me often this summer.

Thank you to the maitré d, John, who treated us like family. We will surely be back often. And as a printing family, of course we loved the names… Print, Press, Ink48. Even the floors of the hotel are named after typefaces, a detail not lost on a design geek like myself.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under carry a camera, restaurants