Sunday, July 26, 2015


Fresh Direct and Peapod are the two most popular online food shopping venues that deliver.  While Fresh Direct has their own warehouse, Peapod is connected with Stop and Shop.  You cannot, however, pick out your food and therefore have to depend upon them for the shopping.  There are a few supermarkets that do the same including the Keyfood (now called Dynasty) located in Rego Park on Woodhaven Blvd. 

Howard Beach’s Keyfood started selling the delicious goods from Russo’s on the Bay.  At some point you would be able to get some of the products at this Rego Park location.  I went online to test it out on what they choose to see if they shopped well for me. I live in their delivery zone and the minimum is $40 with a $5 charge to do the shopping for me with no charge for delivery.  To compare, Fresh Direct has a minimum of $30, delivery charge of $5.00. Peapod want’s a $75 minimum with a delivery charge of $9.99.

I noticed a few flaws when going online with Keyfood and called the store directly.  Many of the products are not offered and prices are not the same.  On the positive end, you can refer to the weekly flyer for what’s on sale.  I wanted to try something they that totally prepared at their deli counter and opted for two types of chicken wings (Buffalo and BBQ) at a price of $5.99 per pound.  Tears were emanating from my eyes with the Buffalo.  My stomach bothered me for many hours after having both. 

I love shaved steak.  I can usually get that at Trader Joe’s.  I asked if they could get it that thin and Jose, the GM, said that I could.  As for the cut, I chose eye round as it was recommended via online research as being a cheap but excellent cut for that use.  Flyer price was $5.99 per pound.  It takes about 45 seconds for this to cook and goes great in either stir fries or sandwiches.  I tend to use ginger and scallions. 

I called in my list and was gotten back with on what was there or wasn’t along with the total.  I was even able to use my credit card just the way I did for Fresh Direct and Peapod.  It was soon after that the food was delivered.  I did not have to wait for a time slot. 

All was fine except for the beef.  It was cut thin but not shaved.  I called and asked if they are able to do this and was assured by Jose.  He told me to keep it in the refrigerator and someone would come and pick it up while exchanging it for the shaved beef.  The store closes at 10 p.m. and it is almost 9 p.m.  No pick up or phone call.   Yes, I finally called to hear Jose tell me that he had forgotten and complained about how he works 16-hours a day.  I guess this Keyfood doesn’t deliver when it comes to keeping agreements. 


The Catskills Comes to Queens is a premiere food and wine tasting being held at Flushing Town Hall on August 1 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. This one-of-a-kind tasting event is being produced by Joseph Distefano, owner of New York Epicurean Events that will take place both indoor and at the outdoor gardens.

“All of our chefs will be working with local meats - grass fed beef, heritage pork etc. - sourced from Carmen Valley Farms, Delancey, N.Y., and Larry's Custom Meats, Hartwick, N.Y.” Distefano said. “We've also partnered with AgriForaging, Margaretville, N.Y., which will be sourcing local produce. Some of the other farms they are working with include Straight Out of The Ground and Fossil Farms.

“While no Catskills products will be for sale,” Distefano continued, “all of our chefs will be working with products from the Catskills, including syrup from Brookside Maple, Delancey, N.Y., which Chef Natty Felder of The Astor Room will use in his maple cured Berkshire pork belly with grits and red pepper jelly. Danny Brown will be using foie gras from La Belle Farms in Ferndale, N.Y., in his terrine of foie gras and guinea fowl. Tastings of cheeses from Vulto Creamery, Walton, N.Y. will be available as will chocolate from Fruition, Shokan, N.Y.”    

Michelin-starred chef Hugue Dufour will be preparing a gigantic tagine of lamb and Michelin-starred Danny Brown will be preparing a terrine of foie gras and guinea fowl. Dufour and Brown are just two of the more than 20 chefs who will be cooking at the festivaI. I like to think of it as putting the best product in New York State in the hands of the best chefs at the city's best  venue.

Other confirmed dishes include: Beef tongue sliders with pickled green heirloom tomatoes and black birch bark mayo. FYI tongue is pickled then smoked over maple and oak. Will Horowitz, Ducks Eatery/Harry & Ida’s; Rabbit mortadella hot dogs from Ed Cotton of Sotto 13; Crispy beef tripe with Sichuan peppercorn and jalapeno from Landhaus; Cold smoked beef rib steaks from Fletcher's Brooklyn BBQ; Whole hog from Arrogant Swine; Galactic brisket from Alchemy/John Brown; Braised short rib with tamarind and fruit chutney from Alfonso Zhicay of Casa del Chef Bistro; and Maple cured pork belly with sour cream grits and red pepper jelly from Natty Felder of The Astor Room.

The event marks the rebirth of Josh Bowen's Alchemy Texas BBQ slated to open later this summer.  “Libations will be poured from our friends at Keegan Ales, Awestruck Ciders, and Roscoe Brewing Co.”, Stefano added.

WHAT: The Catskills Comes to Queens, a premiere farm-to-festival food and wine tasting featuring more than 20 chefs as well beer, wine, and cider, and live entertainment 
WHEN: August 1, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
WHERE: Flushing Town Hall, 137-35 Northern Blvd., Flushing, New York 11354
WHO: More than 20 chefs and culinary artisans including, Chef Hugue Dufour of M. Wells Steak House, Chef Ric Orlando of New World Home Cooking, Chef Danny Brown of Danny Brown Wine Bar & Kitchen, Chef Graziano Techie of Mint, Pitmaster Josh Bowen of John Brown Smokehouse, Pitmaster Big Lou Elrose of Charred, Fruition Chocolate, and Vulto Creamery, plus brewers, vintners, cider makers and live entertainment. TICKETS: $95/$76 members through

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Lincoln Center in the Park

The Lincoln Center Local: Free Screenings series, which offers streams of programs from Lincoln Center’s growing digital content collection to libraries and community centers, including world-class performances from Live From Lincoln Center and other previous live events, has expanding to new venues and new locations this summer. The series is part of Lincoln Center Education’s mission to bring high quality resources and programming options to communities beyond Lincoln Center’s campus in Manhattan.

Free Screenings will be shown on an outdoor screen this summer at the Queens Theatre in Flushing Meadows Corona Park on each Tuesday in August at 8:00 p.m. Showings include Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street with Bryn Terfel, Emma Thompson and the New York Philharmonic on August 4, the Villalobos Brothers on August 11, Yo-Yo Ma with the New York Philharmonic (2013 Opening Night) on August 18, and the 2012 Richard Tucker Opera Gala featuring some of opera’s leading voices on August 25. In case of inclement weather, the screenings will be held at an indoor space at the Queens Theatre.

“At present, there are just over 30 options of past performance arts events that we offer in the Lincoln Center Local: Free Screenings series”, said Eric Gewirtz, Associate Director, Public Relations. “They range from classical, to world music, to theater, to jazz, and more. Queens Theatre is the only outdoor venue in New York City to present these events.”

Marketing Manager, Thibuld Courtois approached Lincoln Center Education for this project. “With several showings to choose from I selected these particular movies to portray the diversity of the borough”.  Violinists Villalobos Brothers, for instance, have been acclaimed as one of today’s leading Contemporary Mexican ensembles. Their original compositions and arrangements masterfully blend and celebrate the richness of Mexican folk music with the intricate harmonies of jazz and classical music.

“We will be setting up a 25’ x15’ screen on the festival lawn located behind the theatre and requesting that people bring chairs, blankets as well as their own picnic baskets”, Courtois remarked. “In case of inclement weather, the movies will be shown inside at the 472-seat theatre.” 
In addition screenings will take place in 19 new locations across the five boroughs of New York City. Details about screenings, locations, and times throughout the summer are available at and


I received another movie screener called HARD DAY, a Korean movie with English subtitles.  Homicide detective Geon-soo Go is having a hard day: in less than 24 hours, he receives a divorce notice from his wife, his mother passes away, and along with his coworkers, he becomes the focus of a police investigation over alleged embezzlement.

Making things worse, on his way to his mother's funeral, Geon-soo commits a fatal hit and run and then, desperately tries to hide the accident by hiding the man's corpse in his deceased mother's coffin. But when Geon-soo gets a mysterious call from a person claiming to be the sole witness of the crime, he realizes that someone has been watching him all along.

Would recommend for its action, mystery and humor.  What would be the next to go wrong with Go’s life?  Keeps you waiting for the next scene.  Fighting? Of course. Nothing really spectacular. 

WOMAN IN GOLD is the remarkable true story of one woman's journey to reclaim her heritage and seek justice for what happened to her family. Sixty years after she fled Vienna during World War II, an elderly Jewish woman, Maria Altmann (Helen Mirren), starts her journey to retrieve family possessions seized by the Nazis, among them Klimt's famous painting “Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I”, her aunt being the subject. Together with her inexperienced but delving young lawyer Randy Schoenberg (Ryan Reynolds), she embarks upon a major battle which takes them all the way to the heart of the Austrian establishment and the U.S. Supreme Court, and forces her to confront difficult truths about the past along the way.

Shoenberg’s grandfather was the famous composer and coincidentally born in Austria.  As for his life, he had given up his own practice to join a firm who first rejected the pursuit until he found that the painting was worth 100 million dollars.  

There are just enough flashback scenes of Altmann’s life, as well as the holocaust happenings on the streets and in the homes to get it all.  Tatiana Maslany portrays Altmann during the war.  Mirren’s acting is always a winner! 

The Rape of Europa (2206) is a must see precursor  to this movie in the form of a documentary that uses interviews with eyewitnesses and historians and newsreel footage to show how heroic Europeans, Russians, and Americans worked to save the art of Europe during WWII.

The Nazis stole thousands of pieces of art and destroyed many others. But many individuals evacuated art and the American "Monuments Men" helped map out air strikes to avoid the destruction of many masterpieces. It is harrowing and moving to see art restored to the families of Jewish victims of the Holocaust.  Here you will meet the actual people such as Maria Altmann and E. Randol Schoenberg.  You can get this well done documentary via PBS. 

Getting away from the topic of movies to television.  I like to watch cooking competitions to see what the contestants create.  Nine out of ten times the first to be booted is a female.  Nineteen  out of twenty times, if the competition comes down to a male and female, the male is the winner.  What puzzles me is that when the cooks talk about their background, they tend to mention how their mother or grandmother taught them how to cook.  It’s all about what the producers choose.  Judges critique based on their own taste.  My favorite line is “There’s not enough salt”.  I would love to get the count on these judges’ blood pressure. 

Master Chef.  They choose the best dish in the beginning and it’s a guy who wins.  He gets to choose one other person to not have to compete in the next cooking challenge and he opts for guy.  In the end a female goes home.  

I enjoy watching Major Crimes, Rizzoli and Isles and Devious Maids.  Proof follows Rizzoli and that’s pretty good.  It stars Jennifer Beal. 

Got hooked on watching Doogie Howser from 2 to 3 am.  Interesting to see what commercials come up.  A perfect way for women to relax in bed…a coloring book and coloring pencils.   Yes, that’s right.  People who stay up late at night are obviously old.  Commercials for knee pain, back pain, falling and can’t get up.  Don’t they think that younger people fall? 

Finally, the dating online sites.  Christian Mingle says that God is guiding you.  So what happens when the date goes bad or a guy winds up raping the woman?  Does he automatically get forgiven?  Now there is Farmers Only.  What happens if you are black, Jewish and raise cattle? 

How about IAM  First meetings held at a McDonald’s or Wendy’s where you are only allowed to choose two items, the most, from the one dollar menu.  Dates take place by going to places with free admission such as museums on certain days.  Subjects of dates are talking about how you went broke supporting all of those $19 a month causes as well as being in debt because you were forced to buy that $1000 iphone for you and the members of your family.

Gotta go now. Weather on the news says that due to the heat and saving energy, we need to turn off the air conditioner but should be in an air conditioned place.   

Wednesday, July 15, 2015


EVERYTHING’S COMING UP COMMUNITY THEATRE Musicals, Musicals, tried and true Musicals.  That’s the scene with Community Theatre in Queens as we start this weekend with Guys and Dolls at the Rockaway Theatre Company.  It appears that they did this production 14 years ago and now with the same director, John Gilleece, bringing it back with a double cast (Just couldn’t turn down all that talent). 
You can see Guys and Dolls July 10, 11, 12 or the last weekend of July 16, 17, 18 and 19.  RTC is located in the Post Building at Fort Tilden.  For tickets and further information go to 

Oklahoma! is the first musical written by the team of composer Richard Rogers and librettist Oscar Hammerstein II. Maggie’s Little Theatre will be presenting this famed production for two weekends beginning on July 18th.  This one is being performed in the Parish Hall of St. Margaret’s Church in Middle Village, located at 66-05 79th Place (between Metropolitan Ave. and Juniper Valley Rd.).  Performance dates are: Saturday, July 18th, 8p.m, Sunday, July19th, 2:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday, July 24th and 25th, 8p.m. and Sunday, July 26th at 2:30 p.m.  For tickets and further information call 917-579-5389.


Movie coming to your local theatre.  IN STEREO centers on David (Micah Hauptman) and Brenda (Beau Garrett), who are perfect for each other and everyone knows it…except David and Brenda.  After they break up, their lives spiral out of control. David self-destructs as an artist while dating an immature woman who sleeps with his best friend. Brenda endues a failing acting career, an eviction notice, and a boyfriend who just doesn’t do it for her.  Brenda’s agent is portrayed by Mario Cantone.
And then chance brings Brenda and David back together on the streets of New York at the worst possible time. 

I saw the screener.  The best part about being able to view a movie either online or a disc is that you can go back to scenes or even the whole movie.  You can’t do that in a movie theatre.  I really had to concentrate on the plot and characters but still had to go back.  I don’t think this one would be up for an award as I did not feel that anything or anyone really stood out enough to deserve one.  Maybe others might appreciate this more than I.  I understand that it was written by someone who had gone through this experience.   The movie is done well and does hold my attention but I wouldn’t go out of my way to see it. 

I don’t mind cooking.  There are just times that I want to order lunch from the area.  I never order Chinese food as it’s not authentic.  With Hispanic restaurants gone amok, I have found a few that I particularly like on the “cheap but good” factor.  One is Caridad (Dominican) on the corner of Jamaica Avenue and 91st St.  They make by far the best Cuban Sandwich going.  Large enough to have half for two meals while adding my own salad.  It’s a panini with roasted pork, ham, swiss cheese and pickles and only one of their $7 specials. 

On the other side of Woodhaven Blvd we have a Colombian restaurant called Mi Ranchito on Jamaica Avenue and 96th St.  They also have daily $7 specials that include soup and entrée.  On Sunday I send out for their oxtail.  Oxtail soup and oxtail entrée…more oxtail, rice and salad. 
Hmmm….it’s lunchtime.  The question is…if you order from Subway, can you get a side order of porn?