Spuntino Wine Bar Holding Month Long Puerto Rico Fundraiser

Spuntino Wine Bar Holding Month Long Puerto Rico Fundraiser

Rico Fascino

Rico Fascino

From November 1-30, Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas (http://spuntinowinebar.com) in Clifton will sell a specialty cocktail, the Rico Fascino, where a portion of proceeds from sales will be donated to United for Puerto Rico, an initiative created by the Office of the First Lady, Beatriz Rosselló, and a group from the private sector that came together with the purpose of helping those who lost their belongings during the passage of hurricanes Irma and Maria.

The idea for the fundraiser was sparked by Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas employee, Gabriela Lugo, who returned from a trip to the island just hours ahead of Hurricane Maria’s landfall and has family members living in Puerto Rico that were directly affected by the storm’s impact. Lugo’s personal experience and accounts of similar stories from fellow employees and customers became the inspiration for the fundraising initiative. Together, she and her colleague, Alexis Morgan, developed the idea and collaborated to create the Rico Fascino cocktail, gaining the support of the Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas team.

Those interested in making a direction donation to United for Puerto Rico can also visit www.unidosporpuertorico.com for more information.

Cheers,

Veronique

Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas to Host Gaja Wine Dinner

Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas to Host Gaja Wine Dinner

Braised Beef Cheek

 Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas, specializing in small plates and world class wines, invites guests to enjoy its Gaja Wine Dinner at its location in the Clifton Commons on Wednesday, November 15 at 7:00pm. 

Chef de Cuisine Michel Desjardins has developed a five-course tasting menu expertly paired with wines from Gaja Winery, founded in 1959 by Giovanni Gaja, a local grape grower from the Piedmont region’s Langhe hillsSpecial guest Michele Zuckerman, Gaja ambassador, will provide tasting notes to guests during the dinner. 

The full menu includes:

  • Seared Scallops – Butternut squash purée, toasted coconut. Paired with a 2015 Gaja Ca’ Marcanda Vistamare.
  • Wild Boar Agnolotti – Ricotta, pecorino cheese. Paired with a 2013 Gaja Barbaresco DOP.
  • Braised Beef Cheek – Smashed fava bean. Paired with a 2013 Gaja DaGromis Barolo DOP.
  • Petit Filet – Mashed potatoes, roasted eggplant, Magari reduction. Paired a with 2015 Gaja Ca’ Marcanda Magari.
  • Cheese Plate– P’tit Basque, orange compote. Paired with a 2012 Gaja Pieve Santa Restituta Brunello.

Tickets for the Gaja Wine Dinner are $150 per person and can be purchased online by visiting http://spuntinowinebar.com/gaja-wine-dinner-clifton/

Cheers,

Veronique

Taste of Roma Limited Time Menu at Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas

Taste of Roma Limited Time Menu at Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas

Espresso Tiramisu Trifle

Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas, known for its small plates with modern twists to Italian classics and fine wines from around the world, will be offering a special Taste of Roma menu at its locations in the Clifton Commons in Clifton, NJ and The Gallery at Westbury Plaza in Garden City, NY from April 3 – 16.

The five-course Taste of Roma menu includes:

  • Zucchini Flowers – Ricotta cheese, tomato jam. Paired with a 2015 Fontana Candida Frascati.
  • Carciofo alla Roma – Artichoke hearts, garlic butter, Pecorino Romano. Paired with a 2011 Falesco Ferentano Roscetto.
  • Bucatini Amatriciana – Pancetta, spicy tomato sauce. Paired with a 2015 Poggio Ai Lupi Sangiovese.
  • Braised Oxtail – Chianti-braised oxtail, tomatoes, Asiago polenta. Paired with a 2012 Di Majo Norante “Ramitello’ Montepulciano Blend.
  • Expresso Tiramisu Trifle– Amaretto mascarpone, hazelnut cake, bittersweet chocolate. Paired with a 2015 Ca’Bianca Moscato.

The tasting menu is available for $45 per person, or $70 including wine pairings. Menu items are also available a la carte. For more information or to make reservations, visit www.SpuntinoWineBar.com.

Cheers,

Veronique

Cranberry Cooler

Cranberry Cooler

cranberry-cooler_img_5888What a fun idea around the holidays – a cranberry drink! Definitely adding this neat cocktail from the fine folks at Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas to my repertoire for the holidays. 

Ingredients

  • 1 fl. oz. Van Gogh Citron (or any other citron flavored vodka)
  • 1/2 fl. oz. Limoncello
  • 1/2 fl. oz. Prosecco
  • 2.5 fl. oz. White Cranberry Juice
  • 1/2 fl. oz. Simple Syrup
  • 4 Cranberries
  • 1 Lemon Wheel

Preparation

1.       Combine vodka, limoncello, white cranberry juice, and simple syrup into a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well.

2.       Empty contents of shaker and cranberries into desired glass – we usually use a highball glass.

3.       Top with prosecco and a lemon wheel. Enjoy!

Makes 1 cocktail.

Kentucky Peach Fizz

Kentucky Peach Fizz

Kentucky Peach FizzPeaches are ripe and plentiful. How fun is this specialty cocktail by Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas in Clifton, NJ? Do you prefer to enjoy cocktails out? Go visit Spuntino to sample this drink and delicious tapas by Chef Josh Bernstein.

Ingredients

  • 1 oz. Maker’s Mark bourbon
  • 1 oz. Giffard Crème de Peche de Vigne
  • 1 oz. prosecco
  • 3 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 1 grilled peach wedge

Method

  • Add ice to cocktail shaker.
  • Add Maker’s Mark, crème de peche and bitters.
  • Shake vigorously.
  • Fill rocks glass with ice and strain contents of shaker into glass.
  • Top with prosecco and garnish with grilled peach wedge.
Spuntino Grilled Peach and Burrata

Spuntino Grilled Peach and Burrata

Grilled Peach & Burrata_IMG_3303Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas celebrates National Peach Month with some outstanding food and drinks specials taking advantage of the peak of peach season. One of the specials Executive Chef Josh Bernstein is showcasing is Grilled Peach & Burrata – fresh local grilled peaches, local burrata, Prosciutto di Parma, hazelnuts, basil, honey with extra virgin olive oil. Grilling the peaches caramelizes the sugars in the fruit, deepening the sweetness, while the burrata provides a creamy base balanced with a bit of crunch from the hazelnuts on top. Basil and honey lend a complementary note the sweetness of the peach, rounding out the dish.  

Chef Bernstein shared his recipe with me, and I’m sharing it with you:

Ingredients

  • 1/2 peach, cut in 6 slices and grilled
  • 2 oz. burrata
  • 2 slices prosciutto
  • 1 tsp hazelnuts, toasted and chopped
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp basil, chiffonade
  • 1/4 tsp Maldon sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp cracked black pepper

Method

  1. Arrange grilled peaches on a large square plate in a diagonal line.
  2. Spoon burrata on top and in between peaches. Drape prosciutto on top.
  3. Sprinkle chopped hazelnut on top of the burrata.
  4. Drizzle with honey and olive oil.
  5. Garnish with basil, Maldon salt and cracked black pepper.

If you prefer to visit Spuntino for this and other specials, the popular restaurant is located at: 70 Kingsland Road
Clifton, NJ 07014.

Cheers,

Veronique

Blueberry Smash

Blueberry Smash

Blueberry SmashI’m always looking for fun cocktail recipes to serve at my various parties and lately, I’ve been really into gin drinks.

This summery cocktail recipe was provided by one of my favorite local spots to enjoy libations and tapas, Spuntino Wine Bar and Italian Tapas. I love the idea of incorporating Jersey blueberries in this drink.

Ingredients:

  • 1 fl oz. Prairie Gin
  • 3/4 fl oz. Grand Marnier
  • 5 fl oz. blueberry puree
  • 1 fl oz. pineapple juice
  • 1/2 oz. lime juice
  • 1/2 oz. simple syrup
  • 1 fl oz. prosecco
  • 6 blueberries

Method:

  1. Fill pint glass with ice.
  2. Add gin, Grand Marnier, blueberry puree, pineapple juice, lime juice and simple syrup.
  3. Empty contents of pint glass into cocktail shaker.
  4. Shake vigorously and strain into coupe glass.
  5. Float prosecco on top and garnish with a spear of blueberries.

Cheers,

Veronique

Wine Events at Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas

Wine Events at Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas

SpuntinoSpuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas will offer a special Foods and Wines of Venice menu at its Clifton Commons location in Clifton, NJ. This menu will be available from January 27 through February 10.

Amazing wines will be paired with specialty dishes hand-crafted by Executive Chef Josh Bernstein.

Foods and Wines of Venice Menu:

SCALLOP CEVICHE BRUSCHETTA – Mint pesto, golden raisins, pine nuts red pepper and red onion.

Paired with a Bisol ‘Jeio’ Prosecco.

BEFF CARPACCIO – Lemon thyme aioli, baby arugula, capers, Maldon salt, shaved Pecorino Romano. Paired with a 2013 Filippi Castelcerino Soave Classico.

RISOTTO DI MARI – Vialone nano rice, shrimp, sea bream, mascarpone, Pecorino Romano, fresh herbs. Paired with a 2012 Bertani Valpolicella.

BRAISED BEEF CHEEKS – Slow-braised with Asiago polenta, fried Brussels sprout leaves.

Paired with a 2013 Zenato Alanera Baby Amarone.

TIRAMISU – Espresso-dipped lady fingers, house-made tiramisu, cocoa powder.

Paired with a Volpaia Vin Santo.

The tasting menu is $45 per person, or $65 per person including wine pairings. Menu items are also available a la carte, and the full menu and link to make reservations are available at www.SpuntinoWineBar.com.

Albert Bichot

Albert Bichot Wine Dinner – January 28

On January 28, the restaurant will host its Albert Bichot Wine Dinner, starring wines from the French wine region of Burgundy. The wines will be paired with a complementary five-course tapas-style tasting menu developed by Chef Bernstein, including dishes such as Crab Cake – upland cress, whole grain mustard, Berkshire Pork Cheek – asiago polenta, fried sprout leaves, and Old Chatham Camembert – black fruit compote.

Tickets to the wine dinner are $89 per person and can be purchased on the website, www.spuntinowinebar.com/albert-bichot-wine-dinner-clifton.

70 Kingsland Road, Clifton, NJ 07014. Tel: (973) 661-2435.

Cheers,

Veronique

Spring Truffle Festival at Spuntino Wine Bar

Spring Truffle Festival at Spuntino Wine Bar

Spuntino TruffleSpuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas, specializing in small plates that put modern twists on Italian classics, has created a special Spring Truffle Festival menu, highlighting the iconic truffleavailable May 4 – 17 at its location in the Clifton Commons in Clifton.

Chef Josh Bernstein has created a one-of-a-kind menu featuring the “diamond of the kitchen,” known as one of the most desirable gourmet foods throughout the world, and a highlight of Italian culinary tradition. Each special dish encompasses the incomparable flavor and aroma of the truffles, and each includes a suggested, complementary wine pairing, featuring wines from the Piedmont region of Italy. Dishes include:

 TRUFFLED ASPARAGUS BRUSCHETTA – Asparagus, pea purée, Pecorino tartufo, truffle oil. Paired with a 2012 Ceretto Arneis.

 BEEF CARPACCIO – Pecorino tartufo, quail egg, truffled-citrus oil. Paired with a 2010 La Spinetta Barbera D’Asti ‘Ca di Pian.’

 “CACIO E PEPE” – Roasted morel mushroom ragu, spring black truffles, basil, cracked pepper. Paired with a 2009 Cantalupo ‘Agamium’ Colline Novaresi Nebbiolo.  

 STRIPED BASS – Porcini mushrooms, fava beans and truffled-pea tendrils in a port reduction. Paired with a 2013 Gavi San Matteo.

CHOCOLATE TERRINE – Black truffle gelato, candied walnuts, Luxardo cherries. Paired with a Fizz ’56 Brachetto NV.

The tasting menu is available for $45 per person, or $65 including wine pairings. Menu items are also available a la carte. For more information, visit www.SpuntinoWineBar.com or at Facebook.

 

Christmas Morning Brunch Recipes from Spuntino Wine Bar

Christmas Morning Brunch Recipes from Spuntino Wine Bar

Spuntino Wine Bar & Italian Tapas Executive Chef, Josh Bernstein, wants to help us to impress friends and family with unique and delicious Christmas morning brunch recipes he serves at both the Clifton, NJ and the Westbury, NY locations.

Egg White Fritatta

Egg White Fritatta

Egg White Frittata

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup Clarified Butter
  • ½ cup Spanish Onion, diced
  • ½ lb Chicken Sausage, cooked and diced
  • ½ bunch Rainbow Swiss Chard, cleaned and chopped
  • 8 cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 2 cups Egg whites
  • Sea salt and ground black pepper to taste

Method:

  1. Heat a 10 inch, nonstick sauté pan over medium high heat. 
  2. Add the clarified butter. 
  3. After about 30 seconds, add the onions, sausage, Swiss chard and tomatoes. 
  4. Cook for 2-3 minutes. 
  5. Season to taste with the sea salt and ground black pepper. 
  6. Mix in the egg whites and stir with a rubber spatula. 
  7. Smooth the mixture out and place into a 400° oven for 5-7 minutes.  (The eggs should be fully set and slightly browned on top.) 
  8. Slide the frittata out of the pan onto a round plate.  Cut into 8 wedges.

 

Pane Francese

Pane Francese

Pane Francese alla Spuntino

Serves 4

Ingredients:

Pane Spuntino:

  • ¼ cup Clarified Butter
  • 1 each Crusty Baguette, cut into 1” bias slices
  • 2 cups Buttermilk
  • 8 eggs
  • 4 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp Sea Salt
  • 2 Cups Maple Syrup
  • Powdered Sugar for dusting

Warm Berry Compote:

  • 1 lb Strawberries, de-stemmed
  • 1 ls Blueberries
  • ¼ cup Honey
  • 1 tbsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1 tbsp Mint, chiffonade

Method:

Warm Berry Compote:

  1. Cut the strawberries into quarters. 
  2. Combine the strawberries, blueberries, honey, vanilla and sea salt in a sauce pan. 
  3. Slowly bring to a boil over low heat to allow the berries to release their liquid.
  4. Let the mixture cook for 30 minutes to reduce the liquid by at least half. 
  5. Fold in the mint.  Set aside for service.

Pane Spuntino:

  1. In a bowl, combine the buttermilk, eggs, sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon and salt. 
  2. Whisk for 1 minute to combine well. 
  3. Dip the baguette slices into the egg mixture.  Allow to sit for one minute to absorb the batter.
  4. Heat the clarified butter in a large non-stick sauté pan. 
  5. Add the battered bread to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes per side. 
  6. Remove baguettes from the pan and dip into the bowl of maple syrup.  Coat on both sides and place into a baking dish. 
  7. Put the pane spuntino into a 450° oven for 4 -5 minutes.  The pane spuntino will puff slightly.
  8. Remove from the oven.  Serve on top of the warm berry compote.  Dust the top with the powdered sugar.

Spuntino’s philosophy, which emphasizes fresh, locally sourced ingredients for their chef-driven made-from-scratch menu, is demonstrated in these dishes.

For more information, visit www.SpuntintoWineBar.com or at Facebook.

Cheers,

Veronique