This Week in New York Insider's Guide to Arts & Culture in New York City Since 2001


Burgers Bourbon Beethoven

The inaugural Burgers, Bourbon & Beethoven Festival takes place in Green-Wood Cemetery on May 25

Green-Wood Cemetery
Fifth Ave. and 25th St., Brooklyn
Saturday, May 25, $80 (twenty-one and older only), 7:00

Historic Green-Wood Cemetery kicks off its second season of the Angel’s Share classical music concert series and summer with the inaugural Burgers, Bourbon & Beethoven Festival. On May 25 by the Gothic Arch, you can sample sliders from Harlem Public and Madcap Café and vote for the winner of the Golden Spatula, enjoy tastings from Angel’s Envy, Blackened American Whiskey, Five & 20, NY Distilling Co, Van Brunt Stillhouse, Widow Jane, and other distilleries, and listen to Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony performed by the String Orchestra of Brooklyn, conducted by Eli Spindel. The evening is presented by Death of Classical and the Green-Wood Historic Fund and will be hosted by Matt Abramovitz of WQXR. In addition, there will be a preconcert sunset reception with a view of New York harbor and the Manhattan skyline.


Dine Around Downtown

Dine Around Downtown offers signature samples for no more than seven bucks in Liberty Plaza (photo courtesy Downtown Alliance)

28 Liberty Plaza
Between Liberty & Pine and Nassau & William Sts.
Tuesday, May 21, 11:00 am - 3:00 pm
Admission: free, all dishes $3-$7

Sponsored by the Downtown Alliance, the eighteenth annual Dine Around Downtown will feature signature dishes from more than three dozen Lower Manhattan restaurants, from pizza places and burger joints to steak and seafood houses. The participating eateries (and what they will be serving) are Aahar Indian Cuisine (Chicken Tikka; Vegetable Samosa; Mango Lassie), Adrienne’s Pizza Bar (Cheese or Pepperoni Pizza; two Slices and a Soda), Atrio Wine Bar (Atrio Meatballs; Chicken Sliders), the Bailey Restaurant & Bar (Kobe Burger, Black Truffle Cream, Red Onion Jam; the Impossible Burger [Vegan], Roasted Peppers & Onions), Bay Room (Panzanella Salad), Beckett’s Bar & Grill (Lobster Mac and Cheese; Lobster Salad Slider with Potato Chips), Bill’s Bar & Burger (Mini B’s Burger), Blue Park Kitchen (Turkey Meatballs, Blistered Grape Tomatoes & Lemon Ricotta), Blue Smoke BPC (Burnt Ends Sandwich; Macaroni and Cheese; Key Lime Pie), Bobby Van’s Steakhouse (Roast Beef Sandwich; Crab Mac and Cheese), Capital Grille (Ribeye Steak Sandwich with Caramelized Onions & Havarti Cheese; Chilled Lobster Salad in a Lettuce Wrap), Cedar Local (Tuna Poke Taquitos; Pretzel Bites with Pimento Cheese), Cowgirl SeaHorse (Mac and Cheese; House-Smoked Pulled Pork Mac and Cheese), Crown Shy (Charred Carrots, Razor Clams, and Lemon Thyme), Delmonico’s (Grilled Steak Sandwich; Lobster Bisque Soup), the Dubliner (Pulled Pork Mac and Cheese; Lobster Salad Lettuce Wrap with Avocado Puree), Eataly (Crunchy Housemade Cannoli filled with Local Cow’s Milk Ricotta), Financier Patisserie (Amaretto; Apricot Lemon Tart; Chocolate Éclair; Lemon Meringue Tart; Tiramisu; Coffee), Harry’s (Grilled Cumin-Citrus Spiced Baby Lamb Chops; Lobster Stuffed Mushrooms), Harry’s Italian (Eggplant Parmesan or Meatball Hero; Cannoli), Insomnia Cookies (Warm Chocolate Chunk Cookies), Ketch Brewhouse (Citrus Salmon Salad; Crab Cake Sandwich; Lobster and Shrimp Roll), Le District (Lobster Mac and Cheese; Macarons), Mad Dog & Beans Mexican Cantina (Grilled Mexican Corn; Guacamole), the Malt House (Blackened Alaskan Salmon Sliders; Buffalo Brisket Sliders; Mexican Corn), Manhatta (Cucumber Gazpacho; Pastrami Reuben Sandwich), Morton’s the Steakhouse (Petite Lamb Chop; Tuna Taco; Shrimp Cocktail), Northern Tiger (Charcoal Grilled BBQ Char Siu Pork & Peashoot Salad; Cascun Farm Chicken & Mushroom Dumpling), Parm Battery Park (Chicken Caprese Sandwich; Tomato Mozzarella Sandwich), Route 66 Smokehouse (Mac and Cheese; Pulled Pork Sandwich), Sky 55 Bar & Grill (Tuna Tartare; Avocado Edamame Salad; Ancient Grain Salad), Stone Street Tavern (Roasted Garlic Mac & Cheese; Spicy Chicken Sandwich), Stout NYC FIDI (Carved Slow Roasted Beef w/ Truffled Horseradish Sauce and Crispy Onion Straws; Creme Brulee Donut), Temple Court (Porchetta Sandwich; Tuna Salad with Wasabi Arugula and Heirloom Radish; Gateau Basque with Strawberry), the Tuck Room (Tuck Room Signature Crab Cake; Heizenberg Farmer’s Market Rhubarb-Berry Lemonade), Underdog (Watermelon Mint Lemonade; Lemon Ginger Lemonade; Pineapple Tarragon Lemonade), and Wei West (Sesame Chicken; Vegetable Maifun; Chicken Fried Rice; Thai Iced Tea). There will also be live music and a raffle. Each plate goes for no more than $7, with proceeds benefiting the Downtown Alliance, which “is striving to make Lower Manhattan a wonderful place to live, work, and play by creating a vibrant multi-use neighborhood.”


worlds fare

Citi Field
123-01 Roosevelt Ave.
Saturday, May 18, and Sunday, May 19, noon - 7:00
General admission $23, with three-hour beer garden $49, VIP $199

The second annual World’s Fare at Citi Field, near where the 1963-64 World’s Fair took place, features more than one hundred food vendors from all five boroughs, more than five dozen craft breweries, a World Market Bazaar, and more. The Culinary Committee co-chairs this year are Gael Greene, Alex Raij, Anita Lo, and Joshua Schneps, with the festival curated by food-arena movers and shakers Liza Mosquito deGuia, Niko Triantafillou, Jean Lee, Joe DiStefano, George Motz, Tia Keenan, Hannah Goldberg, Felipe Donnelly, Jenny Dorsey, Joseph Yoon, Karen Seiger, Kysha Harris, Tamy Rofe, and Cindy VandenBosch. There will be live music by Black Tie Brass Band, Strings N Skins, Funky Dawgz Brass Band, Mariachi Loco, Rho & the Nomads, Royal KhaoZ, Kaleta & Super Yamba, and Underground Horns and dance performances by Sachiyo Ito & Company, Leggz Ltd., American Bolero Dance Company, NY Chinese Cultural Center, Salit Bellydance, Nartan Rang Dance Academy, Country Dancing, KG Group Entertainment, Gemuetlichen Enzianer Dancers, and Schade Academy of Irish Dancing along with interactive murals, karate exhibitions, henna, African body painting, art by Taisan Tanaka, and other events. Among the participating eateries are Baba’s Pierogies, Balkan Bites, Barbecue on a Stick, Caribbean Street Eats, Chef Jimmy’s Vicious Creole Cycle, D’Abruzzo NYC, DiRiso Risotto Balls, Donovan’s Pub, Down East Lobstah, Duck Season, George Motz’s Oklahoma Fried Onion Cheeseburger, Keki Modern Cakes, Little Porky’s, Macaron Parlour, Melt Bakery, Memphis Seoul, Miss Holly’s Smokehouse, Nansense, Oaxaca Taqueria, Republic of Booza, Rooster Boy, Sam’s Fried Ice Cream, Stuffed Ice Cream, Tania’s Kitchen, Twisted Potato, Wafels & Dinges, and What’s the Dillaz. General admission is $23; you can add three hours of libations in the beer garden for another $26, while VIP access goes for $199.

Harlem EatUp!


Chefs Marcus Samuelsson and JJ Johnson (left) return for the fifth annual Harlem EatUp! Festival (photo courtesy Harlem EatUp!)

Multiple locations in Harlem
May 13-19, free - $250

The fifth annual Harlem EatUp! Festival takes place May 13-19, with dozens of chefs, restaurants, culinary organizations, mixmasters, and artists participating in tastings, dinners, concerts, and more celebrating Harlem culture, hosted by Bevy Smith. Below are only some of the special events happening uptown, with part of the proceeds benefiting Citymeals on Wheels, Historic Harlem Parks, and Harlem Park to Park.

Monday, May 13
Dine in Harlem: BLVD Bistro, hosted by owner Carlos Swepson and guest chef Leah Cohen, $135, 7:00

Tuesday, May 14
Dine in Harlem: FieldTrip, hosted by chef JJ Johnson and guest chef Marc Vetri, $85, 7:00

Wednesday, May 16
Dine in Harlem: Melba’s Restaurant, with owner Melba Wilson and guest chef Jerome Grant and DJ Nas Leber, $100, 7:00

Thursday, May 16
The Harlem EatUp! Annual Luminary Award Dinner, honoring Lana Turner and David N. Dinkins, hosted by chef Marcus Samuelsson and guest chefs Mashama Bailey of the Grey and Emma Bengtsson of Aquavit, Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka, Mac McDonald of Vision Cellars, and Andre Mack of Maison Noir, with live music by the Rakiem Walker Project, Red Rooster Harlem, $250, 6:30

Saturday, May 18
The EatUp! Main Stage at the Harlem Stroll, with culinary demonstrations and live performances, Morningside Park, free, 12:30 – 5:30

Ultimate Grand Tasting at the Harlem Stroll, featuring participants Alvin Lee Smalls of Lee Lee’s Bakery, Alyah Horsford-Sidberr of Cove Lounge, Angel Grande of Nocciola Ristorante, Antonio Settepani of Settepani, Ashley Dikos and Andrew Martinez of Bo’s Bagels, Carlos Salazar of Rincón Mexicano, Carlos Swepson of BLVD Bistro, Cédric Durand of Tastings Social presents GAUDir, Cédric Durand of Charles’ Country Pan Fried Chicken, Drunken Fruit, Giannina Gutierrez, Harlem Haberdashery, Camaron Fagan of Harlem Tavern, Humberto Guallpa of Row House, Jake Timmons of Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, Jamaica Tourism Board, Norma Jean Darden of Miss Mamie’s Spoonbread, Jelena Pasic of Harlem Shake, Jessica Spaulding of Harlem Chocolate Factory, Juliet and Justine Masters of the Edge Harlem, Lara Land, Lexis Gonzalez and Dr. Sharon Gonzalez of Lady Lexis Sweets, Leticia “Skai” Young and Raymond Zamanta Mohan of LoLo’s Seafood Shack, Marcus Samuelsson of Red Rooster Harlem/Ginny’s Supper Club, Matthew Trebek & Nodar Mosiashvili of OSO Harlem, Milton Washington, Melba Wilson of Melba’s Restaurant, Nick Larsen and Petrushka Bazin Larsen of Sugar Hill Creamery, Nocciola, RanDe Rogers of Sisters Caribbean Cuisine, Raymond Weber of CUT by Wolfgang Puck, and Zach Sharaga and Samantha Phillips of Dear Mama, adults only, Morningside Park, $85, 12:30 – 5:30

Saturday, May 18
Sunday, May 19

The Marketplace at the Harlem Stroll, with more than two dozen food vendors, a kids’ zone, demonstrations, live performances, and more, Morningside Park, free, 12:30 – 5:30

Sunday, May 19
The EatUp! Main Stage at the Harlem Stroll, with DJ Stormin’ Norman, David Burtka, JJ Johnson of FieldTrip/Henry by JJ, Marcus Samuelsson, Neil Patrick Harris, Scott Conant of Cellaio Steak, Karl Franz Williams of Solomon & Kuff Rum Hall, Charles Gabriel of Charles’ Country Pan Fried Chicken, Johnny Mambo & Friends, Vy Higginson’s Sing Harlem Choir, and more, Morningside Park, free, 12:30 – 5:30

Ultimate Grand Tasting at the Harlem Stroll, featuring participants Aliyyah Baylor of Make My Cake, Amie Kiros of Piatto d’Oro, Andrew LoPresto of Bar314, Antonio Settepani of Settepani, Aromas Boutique Bakery, Camaron Fagan of Harlem Tavern, Carlos Salazar of Rincón Mexicano, Carlos Swepson of BLVD Bistro, Chris Pollok of Bier International, Davie Simmons of Uptown Veg & Juice Bar, Dear Mama, Drunken Fruit, Greedy Pot, Harlem Haberdashery, Humberto Guallpa of Row House, Jamaica Tourism Board, Jessica Spaulding of Harlem Chocolate Factory, Julian Medina of La Chula Harlem, Kenichi Tajima of Tastings Social presents Mountain Bird, Lara Land, Leon Johnson, Lexis Gonzalez and Dr. Sharon Gonzalez of Lady Lexis Sweets, Lloyd’s Carrot Cake, Betty Campbell-Adams of Maison Harlem, Marcus Samuelsson of Red Rooster Harlem/Ginny’s Supper Club, Mark Rosati of Shake Shack, Neca Bryan of Kingston Restaurant & Bar, Norma Jean Darden of Miss Mamie’s Spoonbread, RanDe Rogers of Sisters Caribbean Cuisine, Yohey Horishita, and Zachary Gelnaw-Rubin of Lion Lion, adults only, Morningside Park, $85, 12:30 – 5:30


Ronnie Spector will present annual holiday show at City Winery on December 22

Ronnie Spector will present annual holiday show at City Winery on December 22

Hanukkah is about to start and Christmas is only a few weeks away, so the city is filling up with holiday-themed comedy shows, concerts, and special events. They range from classical performances at the Met and Carnegie Hall to hip-hop, soul, and rock extravaganzas at smaller clubs to Jewish takes on the season. Below is a sampling of some of the cooler events; keep watching this space for more additions.

Sunday, December 2
Hanukkah Family Day, art, music, and more for children ages three and up, with Josh & the Jamtones, Jeff Hopkins, Jewish Museum, free with museum admission (children eighteen and under free), 11:00 am - 4:00 pm

Sunday, December 2
Sunday, December 9

The 8 Nights of Hanukkah with Yo La Tengo, Bowery Ballroom, $40, 7:30

Monday, December 3
Tenth Annual Latke Festival, benefiting the Sylvia Center, Brooklyn Museum, $75-$120, 6:00

Holiday Cheer for FUV, with John Prine, the Lone Bellow, and Shannon Shaw, Beacon Theatre, $90.50 - $301, 8:00

Elon Gold and Modi: A Hanukkah Miracle, with Sherrod Small and Talia Reese, Stand Up NY, $20-$40, 8:00 & 9:45

Thursday, December 6
Festival of Light w/ Matisyahu and special guests the Soul Rebels and GRiZ plus friends, Brooklyn Steel, $30-$35, 8:00

The Cecilia Chorus of New York will perform Handel’s Messiah at Carnegie Hall on December 8

The Cecilia Chorus of New York will perform Handel’s Messiah at Carnegie Hall on December 8

Saturday, December 8
The Cecilia Chorus of New York with Orchestra: HANDEL Messiah, with soprano Shakèd Bar, tenor Michael St. Peter, bass William Guanbo Su, and countertenor Nicholas Tamagna, Carnegie Hall, Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage, $25-$85, 8:00

Cyndi Lauper & Friends: Home for the Holidays, benefit for True Colors Fund, with Amanda Palmer, Angie Stone, A$AP Rocky, Bebe Rexha, Bishop Briggs, Charlie Musselwhite, Dr. Elmo, Gina Yashere, Natalie Merchant, Regina Spektor, Robert Glasper, Sara Ramirez, Shea Diamond, and the Knocks, hosted by Carson Kressley, Beacon Theatre, $50-$150, 8:00

Sunday, December 9
For the Miracles: A Holiday Celebration, with the Young People’s Chorus of New York City performing Samuel Adler’s The Flames of Freedom and Benjamin Britten’s A Ceremony of Carols, conducted by Elizabeth Núñez, Met Fifth Ave., Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium, $65 (bring a child for $1), 3:00

Holiday Concert, featuring Scandinavian and American holiday favorites and Saint Lucia procession with traditional gowns and glowing candles, with members of the Swedish Church Choir in New York, Scandinavia House, $25, 5:00

The 12th Annual Menorah Horah Hanukkah Burlesque Show, with the Schlep Sisters (Minnie Tonka and Darlinda Just Darlinda), Sapphire Jones, Zoe Ziegfeld, the Great Dubini, Allegra, host Bastard Keith, DJ Momotaro, Rara Darling, and Madame Brassiere, Highline Ballroom, $25-$50, 8:00

Friday, December 14
Yule Dogs: A Very Mercury Christmas, with Wormburner, Christopher John Campion with Mad Staggers, and special guests Lifeguard Nights, Mercury Lounge, $12-$15, 7:00

Sunday, December 16
Unsilent Night, participatory boombox concert with Phil Kline, Washington Square Park, free, 6:00

Ingrid Michaelson’s twelfth annual Holiday Hop takes place at the Beacon on December 17

Ingrid Michaelson’s twelfth annual Holiday Hop takes place at the Beacon on December 17

Monday, December 17
Ingrid Michaelson’s Twelfth Annual Holiday Hop, Beacon Theatre, $44.50 - $64.50, 8:00

Oratorio Society of New York: HANDEL Messiah, conducted by Kent Tritle, with soprano Leslie Fagan, countertenor Daniel Moody, tenor Isaiah Bell, bass-baritone Joseph Beutel, and the Chorus and Orchestra of the Society, Carnegie Hall, Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage, $28-$100, 8:00

Tuesday, December 18
KTU Holiday House Party w/ Why Don’t We, Highline Ballroom, $10 (proceeds benefit Cookies for Kids Cancer), 6:00

Saturday, December 22
Ronnie Spector & the Ronettes: Best Christmas Party Ever!, City Winery, $55-$75, 8:00

Sunday, December 23
Christmas Ball — A Merry Evening of Opera, Operetta, and Christmas Songs: Talents of the World Festival at Carnegie Hall, with bass William Meinert, baritone David Gvinianidze, baritone Oleksandr Kyreiev, tenor Arsen Soghomonyan, soprano Ruslana Koval, soprano Tamar Iveri, soprano Olga Lisovskaya, and the winner of the Talents of the World International Competition, Zankel Hall, $65-$95, 7:00

Monday, December 24
A Very Jewish Christmas, with Marion Grodin, James Goff, Sam Morril, Jared Freid, and others, Gotham Comedy Club, $25, 7:00 & 9:00

Tuesday, January 1
Ninth Annual New Year’s Day w/ Joseph Arthur & Lee Ranaldo, City Winery, $20-$28, 8:00


(photo © Chad Batka)

Berowne (Matthew Goodrich) battles King Ferdinand of Navarre (Darren Ritchie) in culinary condensation of Love’s Labor’s Lost (photo © Chad Batka)

94 Gansevoort St.
Tuesday-Saturday through January 4, $75-$200

In William Shakespeare’s Love’s Labor’s Lost, Moth tells Costard, “They have been at a great feast of languages, and stolen the scraps.” That line might have been cut from Shake & Bake Theatre’s tasty, streamlined adaptation of the Bard’s mid-1590s comedy, but it is an apt description of the festive experience to be had at 94 Gansevoort St. across the street from the Whitney. The two-hour presentation features music, dance, an eight-course menu with drinks, and a fine dose of Shakespeare, all stirred together for an appetizing evening. Shake & Bake boils things down to three men, King Ferdinand of Navarre (Darren Ritchie), Longaville (Oge Agulué), and Berowne (Matthew Goodrich), who have just taken a three-year vow of no women, spare eating and sleeping, and intense study when a trio of ladies suddenly arrives, the Princess of France (Victoria Rae Sook), Rosaline (Mary Glen Fredrick), and Maria (Rami Margron). The Princess has come to collect a hefty debt that King Ferdinand owes her father. The men’s will is tested as they pair off in potential love matches: the King with the Princess, Berowne with Rosaline, and Longaville with Maria. Meanwhile, the Chef (Joe Ventricelli) prepares food and drink, the Cheetos-loving Costard (Margron) misdelivers some crucial letters, Boyet (Charles Osborne) attends to the ladies, and Spanish nobleman Don Armado de Adriano confesses his love for the (unseen) country maid Jaquenetta. Mystery and mayhem ensue as the cast also serves a rather impressive dinner.

(photo © Chad Batka)

The Princess of France (Victoria Rae Sook) and King Ferdinand of Navarre (Darren Ritchie) try to make a deal in tasty Shakespeare adaptation (photo © Chad Batka)

Created and adapted by director Dan Swern, choreographer Sook, and executive chef David Goldman, Shake & Bake: Love’s Labor’s Lost is a sweet and savory treat, even for Shakespeare purists. The show takes place in a large space where the audience of no more than fifty sits in cool, comfy couches for two or four people, surrounding the action; Shawn Lewis’s production design also includes a small kitchen on one side and a culinary cart wheeled on- and offstage. The male and female protagonists are dressed like royal waitstaff, in different-hued button-down tops, while Armado is in a nutty and colorful chef’s outfit. The dishes they serve, which relate directly to what is happening in the play, include field greens with balsamic quinoa, Cheeto-dusted mac n’ cheese, smokey brisket tacos, and roasted beet gazpacho, along with red and white wine and a shot of Jagermeister. (Vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, and nonalcoholic options are available.) The soundtrack ranges from acoustic guitar played by Ritchie and accordion by Margron to Scott Bradlee and the Postmodern Jukebox’s covers of Meghan Trainor’s “All About the Bass” and Lorde’s “Royals,” along with snippets of songs by the Beatles, Hall & Oates, Whitney Houston, Outkast, New Kids on the Block, and Queen. Osborne provides wild and wacky over-the-top comic relief, playing up his character for all its worth, while Margron adds in her fair share as Costard.

Goodrich and Fredrick are a particularly attractive Berowne and Rosaline among an appealing cast — a member of which might rest a head on your shoulder, lick the bottom of your shoe, or, as one did with me, hand you a package to deliver, telling you not to worry because the entire plot rests on your correctly performing the task. Early on, Berowne proclaims, “Come on, then, I will swear to study so, / To know the thing I am forbid to know: / As thus — to study where I well may dine, / When I to feast expressly am forbid; / Or study where to meet some mistress fine / When mistresses from common sense are hid.” Fortunately, they break all oaths, and everyone benefits in this delightfully filling reimagination of dinner theater. (As a bonus, Shake & Bake is presenting “Beers and Bard” on November 26 [$10, 7:00], in which audience members can preselect a part to play in Twelfth Night [scripts are provided] or grab a drink from the bar and simply watch the proceedings.)


More than twenty thousand guests are expected to descend on Arthur Ave. on Saturday for the annual Ferragosto festival

More than twenty thousand people are expected to descend on Arthur Ave. on Saturday for the annual Ferragosto festival

Arthur Ave. between Crescent Ave. & 187th St.
Saturday, September 9, free, 12 noon - 6:00 pm

The Ancient Roman festival known as Ferragosto dates back to August 15 in 18 BC, celebrating summer, the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, the end of the harvest season, and various gods and goddesses (Diana, Vertumnus, Opis). Here in New York City, Ferragosto is taking place this year on September 9 along one-hundred-year-old Arthur Ave., which was named for Chester A. Arthur, the Vermont-born New York lawyer and politician who became the twenty-first president of the United States. Belmont Business Improvement District executive director Philip Marino will give the opening remarks at 11:30, followed by Elio Scaccio performing “Inno di Mameli,” the Italian National Anthem, and Nick Vero delivering “The Star-Spangled Banner.” There will be live performances by Scaccio and JulieAnna at 11:45 and 2:15, Natalie Pinto at 12:45, Frankie Sands at 3:15, and Rock Steady at 4:45. Among the many merchants with booths will be Arthur Avenue Cigars, Artuso Pastry Shop, Bronx Dance Theatre, Casa Della Mozzerella, Catania’s Pizza, De Lillo’s Pastry Shop, Dominick’s Restaurant, Gerbasi, Liberatore’s Garden, Madonia Bros. Bakery, Mario’s, Peter’s Meat Market, Randazzo’s, Sacred Heart Gifts & Apparel, St. Barnabas Hospital, Terranova Bakery, and Zero Otto Nove. It doesn’t get much more Italian than this, so divertiti!