Hurricane Club

Opening this September, The Hurricane Club, a sprawling, 11,000-square-foot Polynesian-style restaurant and lounge from restaurateur Michael Stillman and chef Craig Koketsu, is set to be one of New York City’s most tropically tantalizing dining and nightlife destinations. The AvroKO-designed space in Manhattan’s NoMad district features Koketsu’s Polynesian menu (think pupu platters) and a tiki-inspired cocktail list by director of the cocktail department Richard Leach.

has gone gourmet, and for anyone who likes to entertain, a stand-alone ice maker has become an essential appliance to churn out cubes with the clarity of crystal and a pure taste that won’t have noticeable hints of whatever’s in your fridge. Cool ice machines include the Scotsman Brilliance (pictured) and the KitchenAid Architect Series II, both sleek, stainless steel models for indoors or out. (For ice a la Sonic Burger, you’ll have to spring for a commercial-size nugget ice machine, such as the Scotsman model owned by Vince Gill.),

Set in the heart of New York City’s West Village, the James Beard House is the stuff of a die-hard food lover’s dreams. With just a reservation, anyone attending enjoys intimate, multicourse dinners served in a tree-lined brownstone by both celebrated and up-and-coming chefs. Diners rub elbows with the culinary elite, from the soft-spoken Thomas Keller to the devilish Todd English.

Left: James Beard House, Right: Kalamazoo Pizza Ovens
Not only will your homemade pizza be personally created, so will the oven you cook it in. Kalamazoo Outdoor Gourmet recently debuted its Artisan Fire Pizza Oven, a stainless steel wonder that is designed to weather the elements and is built to order. The most efficient (and exciting) features include its ability to reach a top cooking temperature of 800 degrees in only 50 minutes; a top-and- bottom, two-burner configuration with the option to control each burner separately; and the choice of natural gas or propane models. $6,495,

L.A.’s multibillion-dollar LA Live entertainment complex is a one-stop shop for fun — and food — seekers, offering a multitude of palate-pleasing options. WP24 by Wolfgang Puck (the signature restaurant of The Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles) is perched atop the 24th floor with a Chinese- inspired menu and jaw-dropping downtown views. At LA Market — celebrity chef Kerry Simon’s venture at the JW Marriott Los Angeles — guests grab a seat at the Burrata Bar to sample the Italian cheese and can choose from an impressive wine-by-the-glass list (including Dom Perignon for $40 a glass). Thanks to LA Live, it’s time to rediscover Los Angeles.

Montecilllo Wines from Spain
Montecillo was one of the first wineries to apply Bordeaux winemaking techniques to Spain’s native Tempranillo varietal, and winemaker María Martínez-Sierra has crafted some rich results for the Osborne family for more than three decades. The Montecillo Gran Reserva 2001 is a fine example, and for a real treat, try the Gran Reserva Selección Especial, like the wonderful 1981, found at and priced at about $235 per bottle.

Everyone loves chocolate, but you haven’t had chocolate until you’ve had Norman Love’s chocolates, which are not mere confections but creations. Recently named one of North America’s Top 10 Chocolatiers, Love creates chocolates that rely on our senses and memories, including the S’more Love product line (harking back to our most-cherished campfire memories) and the new BLACK Sipping Chocolate, a gourmet collection featuring chocolate from the finest growing regions worldwide.

Organic Cocktails
In the continuing trend of eco-imbibing, distilleries worldwide are offering a new level of purity in the form of organic spirits (think pesticide-free vodka, carbon-neutral rum, and hefty doses of organic herbs). At P.O.V. Rooftop Lounge and Terrace, the stunning bar atop W Washington D.C., sip a guilt-free all-natural libation that changes with the seasons and is chock-full of fresh fruits and vegetables. Also on the menu: ice cubes in five different shapes for ideal melting.

With pork belly continuing to appear on menus with the regularity of a Swiss watch, the trend shows no signs of slowing down. At The Islington Hotel, a luxury boutique hotel in Hobart, Tasmania, chef Paul Foreman (arguably the state’s best) creates amazing seared Freycinet Coast scallops and caramelized pork belly with parsnips puree and new-season Tasmanian truffles using a rare and succulent breed of Wessex Saddleback pig.