More Wine at the Caffé

Dating Food Nightlife

by Saira Toppin

I entered Caffé e Vino simply to drop off photographs with my partner Luis Vaz (photographer) for the owner’s wife. Luis introduced me to Giuseppe who then asked us if we wanted a drink… The night was in the bag from there.

Our jackets were taken to coat check, wine was served and appetizers were ordered. Fresh soft bread with tomato spread and water was placed on the table. We ate fried calamari and zucchini and sipped wine.

Since we only stepped in to make a drop, having a full meal was not on my mind. Giuseppe asked us if we wanted to eat…what to do?? Having had a late lunch that day I knew I was not too hungry, but me giving up delicious Italian food is unheard of, never to be uttered aloud. I told him to make a light dish for me. A few minutes later we were met with linguine with Alfredo sauce topped with shrimp. Luis was not too happy because they served us both small plates. I got what I asked for, sorry buddy.

I thought that we were receiving exceptional treatment because my partner knew the owner, but it seemed to be given to all attendees of the restaurant, which is amazing, because we were given a lot of attention. The atmosphere was very warm, exposed brick and candlelight, always perfect for a second date. I say second because you do not want to start off with too much romance on the first date. Don’t scare him/her away just yet.

Back to the pasta which was great, the Alfredo sauce was different, nothing like I had before. It truly tasted homemade.

To end the meal off we were given homemade cheesecake and I opted for more wine instead of a latte. I left with a smile on my face and an overstuffed stomach. No room for complaint. We grabbed our coats and crossed the bridge to attend a party thrown by the Mayor.

If you are looking for a great new restaurant to try, head over to Caffé e Vino in Downtown Brooklyn, right before the Manhattan Bridge at 112 Dekalb Avenue.

Simmering With Samantha: Barbone, pronounced “Bar-bo-nay”

Exploits Food

By Samantha Hew, Founder of Hewmour Catering

Taking bite out of the Big Apple is like taking a tasting trip around the world. At every meal you can dash off to a new country and dip your fork and spoon into the local cuisine without the international jet lag. People from all corners of the globe have opened restaurants here, and Manhattan’s hungry masses, urban gourmands, and food critics have welcomed their diverse dishes and asked for seconds. My food journey may lead me to Chinatown for Malaysian, to East 6th Street for Indian, to Harlem for Soul Food, or to Little Italy and Koreatown. This week’s pick is a trip down to Alphabet City.

“The service starts as you enter the door and ends as I greet you good night at the door”, said Albert Ibrahimi, owner and chef of Barbone. In Italian, “Barbone” means “bum” or “homeless man”, an ironic name that belies the rich Italian-inspired menu and a superb wine list. Continue reading