#SCBD Halloween Spooktails!

Halloween would not be complete without a cocktail or two. Here are some delicious cocktails some of New Jersey & New York’s finest are offering during their Halloween parties this week and weekend:

Devils Tuxedo (Blue Moon Mexican Cafe)

  • 2 oz Patron XO Cafe
  • 1 oz Irish Whiskey

Devils Tuxedo!

Oktoberfest Milkshake (Big Daddy’s)

  • Vanilla Milkshake
  • Oktoberfest Beer
  • Whip cream
  • Caramel

Oktoberfest Shake

The Spooky Spicy Bloody Mary (Maxwell’s)

  • Stoli vodka
  • Maxwell’s house made old bay bloody mary mix

Shaken & served over ice!

Bloody Spooky Mary

Killer Transfusions (Maxwell’s)

  • Stoli Vodka
  • Ginger ale

Served over ice with a splash of grape juice!

Killer Transfusions

Blood Orange Margarita (Maxwell’s)

  • Tequila
  • Simple Syrup
  • Blood Orange Extract
  • Fresh Lime

Shake and serve in a martini glass!

Blood Orange Margarita

Cheers to a great Halloween!

#SCBD Places to Celebrate Halloween in NJ & NYC!

Halloween is quickly approaching and there are tons of parties throughout New York & New Jersey starting this weekend. If I were you I’d grab your costume & an appetite for night of fun.

Here are some the hottest parties in Jersey:

Blue Moon Mexican Cafe (Englewood & Wyckoff locations) will be holding an Adult Halloween Costume Party on this Friday 10/26! It will be a night filled with live Bands, a costume contest and a Patron XO Dark Promo Party with fun giveaways.   First place winner of the costume contest will win a $200 BMMC gift card and $100 BMMC gift card for runner up.

Also, On Halloween, they have their annual family contest – all children who dine at the Blue Moon in costume are entered to win one of 3 prizes $100 to Toy Store, $50 to Toy Store or Dinner for 4 to BMMC.

Village Pourhouse in Hoboken will be holding a carnival on Halloween night. Drink specials include $4 Sailor Jerry Redrums, Sailor Jerry RIP Rum Punch, Devil’s Cut shots & cocktails,  and Vision Vodka Blood Bath Cocktails. $3 Coor Light drafts, & $6 pumpkin pie cocktails & pumpkin bombs! Cheers!

If you plan on celebrating in the city, here are some places to go:

Maxwell’s Bar in Tribeca is hosting their Halloween Party this Saturday, October 27th starting at 9PM. Cover is $10 at the door but proceeds go directly to the LGS foundation. They will have a Dj and drink specials throughout the evening– costumes are a must! Insiders note– they will also be serving a special Halloween menu on Halloween including a Blood Orange Margarita, The Spooky Spicy Bloody Mary, or The Killer Transfusion for $10.

Maxwell’s Halloween decor!

Love bakeries as much as I do? Then you are in for a treat Halloween night at Ivy Bakery in SoHo! Make sure you attend the Halloween ”Truck or Treat” EventCelebrate some of Divine’s darkest flavors at the “Truck or Treat” Food Pop Up Event during New York City’s Halloween Parade on October 31st. Presented by Ivy Bakery and Farm2Me, in conjunction with NYC Food Truck Association and Cheap Eats, the fun kicks-off at Ivy Bakery138 West Houston St (between MacDougal and Sullivan) at 5pm.

From 5-8 pm, Divine Chocolate’s Trick or Treat station at Ivy Bakery will feature wicked samples of our 70% Dark, 70% Dark with Raspberries and our Limited Edition bars, including Dark Chocolate Hazelnut Truffle and Dark Chocolate with Hazelnuts and Cranberries. They have samples for Milk Chocolate lovers, too!

Now the question is where to celebrate– in Jersey or the city?

Decisions, decisions– maybe I’ll see you at one of the parties mentioned above!

Cheers! :D

Take a Bite of the Best at Girello Pizza in #Tribeca!

Last Thursday, I had the pleasure of dining with my dear friend Serena Palumbo at Girello in Tribeca. Girello has a perfect lcoation because it’s not even a two minute walk from the downtown train station. It was the first time Serena and I went there and we loved it.

We were welcomed with a smile by our waitress Tara and were escorted to our table. Girello has a nice, cozy atmosphere so as soon as Serena and I got seated we felt right at home! We were each served a glass of wine, which I really enjoyed followed by an amuse, fresh baked bread with oil & vinegar to compliment our wine. We loved our bread but it only got better from there. Next, Tara picked our first course, mussels.

Our delicious plate of mussels!

The oven roasted P.E.I. mussels. tomatoes, garlic, white wine, herbs were perfect and a great portion for two people to share. Serena and I really enjoyed them– we love our seafood! Our second course consisted of the salad they had their special menu complimented by their special cocktail of the night. The cocktail was great and served in a teacup. The salad was huge, it had arugula, tangerines, and a shredded cheese. It was delicious!!!! I think they should put it on the menu too!

The salad from Girello!

Last, we opted to have pizza as our last course, since Girello is known for their pizza. I can see why they are known for their pizza, because we were not disappointed! We tried the pizza special. It was white pizza topped with vegetables and arugula– it was cooked perfectly! I loved it! The cocktail of the night also complimented the pizza–Serena and I were in foodie heaven!

Pizza from Girello

Of course, we couldn’t leave without trying one of Girello’s signature desserts– tiramisu! Now, let me tell you Serena and I loved the tiramisu. It was a great size, we ate as much as our stomachs could handle!

Tiramisu

So if you are in Tribeca and looking for a cozy restaurant to enjoy a great meal, I highly recommend Girello. I loved the fact that as soon as I came in I was treated like family. The food is great and fare priced. They also have a new cocktail every night that’s available starting during happy hour. I love that they focus on specials so you can expect something different when you come in but they a great list of signature dishes!

Girello: 11 Varick St. between Franklin St. and N.Moore St. in Tribeca

Happy Eating!! :D

*Disclaimer: The PR team paid for my meal. I was not required to write about these experiences and my opinions are my own and unbiased.*

Why SCBD thinks you should see Robert Irvine Live!

In case you didn’t know I’m a huge fan of Chef Robert Irvine & so is my boyfriend! I also was fortunate to have to have the opportunity to interview Chef Robert Irvine for Jersey Bites before he had his show live in Red Bank, NJ on October 5th!

I figured the best way to tell you all why you should see it is through pictures! I will let you know that the night was filled with cooking, physical, mental, & cooking challenges. As Robert promised in my interview– a robot & of course getting to know him better and on a personal level! We had great seats– 2nd row to the left! It was a great night shared by both my me and Jason (my boyfriend) and let me tell you Count Basie probably smelt the best it ever did!

Here’s a peak of Chef Robert Irvine Live:

Started the show cooking a great piece of fish!

Speaking to the crowd with the lights up in the audience!

Speaking again– in tip top shape!

Getting ready for a challenge!

Telling us a story!

Time for a physical challenge, that was crazy!

It’s #hammertime

Bidding the hammer and proceeds go to the armed forces & vets!

If you are a fan of Chef Robert Irvine, I highly recommend you go to the show! It’s unlike any show you’ll go to and you really get to meet Chef Robert! It’s awesome that he is constantly interacting with his audience and they actually participate in the show! Check out if he will be in a theater near you– here.

For all the Jersey fans– Chef Robert Irvine will be back in New Jersey at Bergen PAC in Englewood, NJ on December 16th. I know I will definitely be there, especially since it’s so close to where I live now! If you plan on going to the Bergen PAC show, you can purchase your tickets, here.

If you’ve gone to the show I’d love to know what you thought of it! Also let me know if you plan on attending the show on December 16th, maybe I’ll see you there!

’til next time! :D

#SCBD loves: Shake Shack (Madison Square Park)

A few weeks ago, well before Wingfest to be precise. My roommate Leah & I took a trip over to the Madison Square Park location of Shake Shack since the event was in the area. It was actually my first time at Shake Shack, which was even more motivating for me to try it. I actually won a gift card for Shake Shack from Black Board Eats (New York). Black Board Eats is  one of the top foodie deal sites I know, they give you 20-30% off some of Manhattan’s best restaurants weekly. So I highly recommend you sign up & check out their weekly deals.

Shake Shack, Madison Square Park

So with gift card in hand, it was time to order from Shake Shack. Mind you, the line was long but thats expected and totally worth it! We decided to get cheese fries to split and each got a Shack Burger with beers. Leah got the Oktoberfest special beer they had available and I got the Shackmeister beer. I had to try the classic beer they serve and judge it for myself. It was what I would like to call our pre-Wingfest ‘linner’ (meal between lunch & dinner but it’s not brunch!)

Our burgers, cheese fries, & beers from Shake Shack– delish!

So here’s what I thought:

  1. My burger was delicious, great on flavor and size. I’m big on eating good portions and Shake Shack’s are perfect.
  2. Cheese Fries are some of the best cheese fries I’ve had (now I want some!) It’s a delicious mix of their Shack cheddar & American cheese sauce, on top of their perfectly cooked fries.
  3. I had low expectations for the beer, but Shackmeister beer was great. Not too heavy,  just perfect. I wish I could’ve brought a case home with me! It was also a perfect compliment to my meal.
  4. Oh yeah how can I forget, even though I had a gift card– the prices aren’t too bad & totally worth it. It’s a perfect deal because you can get a meal for two for no more than $30! I love it!

Yes, I’ll say it, I’m hooked and am now a loyal Shake Shack fan. Next time I go of course I also plan on trying a shake. I was really impressed with the burgers, beer, and fries– Shake Shack is worth the wait!

Danny Meyer is definitely doing something right with Shake Shack in the city, now can he bring it to Jersey?

I think I might just have to stop at Shake Shack when I’m in NYC this weekend!

Well I have tons more coming up for you all this week– stay tuned! :D

A Gem in FiDi: Battery Place Market!

About two weekends agp, I had the pleasure of going to Battery Place Market in the heart of the Financial District.  It’s unlike any market I’ve seen, filled with organic & unique groceries. It’s perfect for a foodie, who isn’t afraid to venture out of their comfort zone or even just wants a specific product that they carry, and they carry a lot! :)

It’s not just a market, you can also sit in their seating area in back and eat dishes made by Executive Chef Robert Sckalor.

From early morning breakfast sandwiches and frittatas using only the finest artisanal products, to a lunch that includes hot dishes or sandwiches on Sullivan Street or Orwasher’s breads, to picking up a dinner that has local or organic chicken, beef, fish, pork or vegetarian dishes that will warm the soul, Chef Robert  Sckalor creates it all. Sckalor has been cooking for the last 37 years in such establishments as the Waldorf Astoria, Agata & Valentina, and the Four Seasons. He cooks what many consider the best prepared cuisine from a specialty food shop in New York City.  The New York Times praised his incredible crab cakes and DOWNTOWN Magazine‘s staff enjoyed the first batch of Chef’s homemade turkey chili and according to the magazine, “One bite and you are hooked!” Chef Rob also teaches a weekly cooking class at PS-IS 276 across the street from Battery Place Market.  He just loves watching the kids help make unique dishes and seeing them and the teachers eating everything!

I was welcomed into the market to an amazing cappuccino to warm me up since it was cool that weekend. After getting a tour of the market, I had the pleasure of trying Chef Robert’s Kobe Beef Brisket on a light roll with his homemade coleslaw which was delicious for lunch. I was also able to try Mamma Chia which I really enjoyed since they have so many one of a kind products at the market. The brisket was unlike any brisket I’ve tasted & I could definitely taste the difference in the beef.

I was fortunate to meet the Chef during my visit who told me himself, “I am alway working on twists on classic dishes and utilizing the finest products I can find. The best thing about this market is working with awesome local and national vendors. It’s unlike any market you’ll find in Manhattan.”

The great thing about Battery Place Market is that they have tons of organic and non-organic products available. I was in heaven seeing so many products available to cook with and products you can’t get just anywhere– one of my favorite was the Jersey tomato ketchup, being that I am a Jersey girl.  There were also tons of things I was interested in using to cook with like fresh truffles, a full selection of organic and local NYC vendors and more.

Chef Robert’s Kobe Beef Brisket & homemade coleslaw from Battery Place Market.

I really loved it and would definitely get my specialty groceries there! I also would love to try more of Chef Robert’s dishes. I was extremely impressed with the brisket and the coleslaw. I would love to try more of his Kobe beef entrees and sides.  So if you are looking to find one of a kind, unique, or even organic groceries– go to Battery Place Market. It’s also a place where you’re welcomed to shop on an empty stomach because you will surely be satisfied by any of Chef Robert’s dishes. Compliments to the Chef on his unique dishes!

Insiders Note: They also have a smaller market that serves up the same great products right under the Goldman Sachs building– it’s located at 240 Murray Street  (North End Way)! Make sure you check it out!

Well, I have tons of more on the way– stay tuned!

Happy Eating! :D

*Disclaimer: The PR team paid for my meal. I was not required to write about these experiences and my opinions are my own and unbiased.*

A #SCBD #UWS Find: The Fairway Market Cafe & Steakhouse

Last week I had the pleasure of being invited to dine at the Fairway Cafe & Steakhouse on the Upper West Side for a tasting. As you know, I am a huge supporter of Fairway because they carry just about everything for great prices & their products are fresh & top notch. Of course you know me, I had to take a peek at the dinner menu before I went & all the dishes sounded great and they turned out to be all that  and more.

I started off with some bread with olive oil and spice which tasted great! I was hungry after a long day of work. Before I continued looking at what to order they took my drink order and I opted for the Lemonade Fizz (basically a lemonade mimosa= lemonade with Prosecco) Next, the chef sent over some onion rings— they were some of the best onion rings I’ve had. They were thin & crisp and delicious. Since it was a tasting I felt it was only right that I try a soup, salad, & two entrees. I opted to try the Tuscan White Bean Soup which was great, it wasn’t too heavy on the sausage or escarole and the beans were cooked great. Next, came my favorite and why I’m determined to get Prosciutto next time I go to Fairway. It was the Prosciutto & Baby Arugula Salad. It was one of the best salad’s I’ve ever ate and really made arugula grow on me. It had the perfect amount of thinly sliced, Italian Prosciutto, black olives, cornichons, and tons of baby arugula with an aged balsamic vinaigrette, sea salt, & EEVOO. It was a salad heaven for me & that’s coming from a girl who loves caesar salads– but I’m also a sucker for a good balsamic!

The Prosciutto & Arugula Salad from Fairway Cafe & Steakhouse- UWS

Next, came the entrees– I love seafood & a good steak. Since it is a steakhouse I opted for the hangar steak with sweet potato fries and the jumbo lump crabcakes with a corn relish. The crab cakes were a great consistency and really light and the relish really balanced it well. The steak was also great– cooked up to par, a perfect medium. Of course I had to put some Peter Luger steak sauce on it, which I actually really liked. I normally don’t put steak sauce on my steak but this was an exception. I was really impressed with both entrees. Of course, since I am a small girl, I had some steak & sweet potato fries leftover but it tasted just as great the next day which is always a plus!

Jumbo lump crab cakes with corn relish & tartar sauce

My delicious hangar steak!

Some of the best sweet potato fries I’ve had!

I was fortunate to meet the Chef Mitchel London while I was there. As Chef de Cuisine for Fairway Market, London’s philosophy is simple- “Everything must be delicious.” Before joining Fairway, Mitchel was Mayor Ed Koch’s official chef at Gracie Mansion for seven years, and for more than 20 years, he and his wife Carmela have run their own takeout shops and a catering business called Mitchel London Foods. He also owns Mitchel London’s Burgers and Cupcakes, which he opened in Manhattan in 2006– which I want to check out. He has also been featured on many food demos on NBC. London’s role includes the creation of all prepared foods and baked goods in all four locations of the gourmet supermarket.  London began his career at Fairway in 1999, when he opened the popular Café and Steakhouse in the W. 74th Street store, which he still runs today.

Of course I couldn’t turn down a dessert suggestion from the chef so I ended my meal by tasting the Plum Cobbler which was Chef’s special that night & the crepes a la creme. Both were amazing but the cobbler really won me over. It was a great blend of fruit fruit filling, I ate it all! The crepes a la creme were great as well, I loved the sauce they were served with, it was an orange, vanilla flavor and light enough that it didn’t mess up the crepes. Every dish I ate was impressed by, it was not what you’d expect from a cute, cozy cafe on the 2nd floor of the Fairway.

London’s Plum Cobbler

Crepes a la creme

All in all the meal was a huge success. I was really happy with every dish I ate. It’s a perfect place for a date night with your boyfriend or girlfriend. They also had the Yankee game on when I was there so if they are a sports lover they won’t miss out. They also have  awesome prix-fixe options, which is great for a night out and plus there is groceries downstairs. Oh and how could I forget they have happy hour, everyday from 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm, $1 off beer and wine by the glass!

The staff was also friendly and helpful, ompliments to Chef London for preparing such a great meal– #SCBD will definitely be coming back!

Happy Eating! :D

*Disclaimer: The PR team paid for my meal. I was not required to write about these experiences and my opinions are my own and unbiased.*

#SCBD– A Concept that Started A Year Ago, Still A Work in Progress!

When I started this blog a year ago, well this week a year ago to be exact– I had no idea where it would take me, the opportunities it would bring me, etc. If you read my story you know I was just interning at The Rachael Ray Show in the field, post, & production departments and in the my 2nd to last semester of my Senior year at Fairleigh Dickinson University. On the Wednesday’s I interned I’d always tell my peers I interned with the best deals I found for lunch which would usually be Blarney Stone, or my craving for Potbelly. I was the deal finder of the gang and I took the title proudly. I’d also constantly look for deals on Twitter & Midtown Lunch. Thursday’s were also filled with great food experiences on set or just sharing a meal during the field department, never a dull moment.

As I mentioned in my story I was also involved with the Intern Queen Campus Ambassador program and would be blogging about food the next semester. I knew I could do it but I knew if I started a blog about food & deals it would be a head start. The idea sunk in my head more, so one Thursday when I was finished with my field work on the computer I decided to start the blog. As I mention above and in the title, this was just the manifestation of starting the blog and having the site. I wrote a little paragraph about my concept, etc. It was also written the day before my boyfriend Jason’s birthday last year. You can see my first post, here. As you may notice it’s not much but it’s something!

Like any good thing buying the domain didn’t happen until later. Since I wanted to be the best intern possible, I had to wait to share my eating adventures while I interned and went full on and haven’t stopped writing (except for maybe finals week) since January 11, 2012 and I plan on celebrating a year in 2013! I’m so happy that I can bring you all the information I have whether it be recipes, meeting you readers through Twitter, all of the interviews the last few months and of course my special deals and contest alerts! I also can’t forget where it all began with my restaurant reviews.

I want to end this on a happy note — I found this shirt at Forever 21 today at Garden State Plaza and had to buy it and share it with you all:

It screamed SCBD and was perfect timing with the one year concept anniversary!

I love the quote: Eat, Drink, Be Merry!

I love the colors of this banner with the saying also:

I promise I will have another reflection piece in January. I’d also love to have a happy hour or something to celebrate and would love invite fellow bloggers & readers to celebrate the one year anniversary of the launch so keep the week of January 11th open!

Make sure you are a fan and are following Small Chick Big Deals on Facebook & Twitter for the most ongoing updates! I am always posting deals, recipes, new posts, & more– so it’s the easiest way to get a hold of me also.

Before I get too carried away, I just want to emphasis once more how grateful I am for all you readers, the fellow bloggers I’ve met, businesses I’ve been fortunate to review & work with and all the people I’ve been able to interview & more! I’d also love to thank the staff of The Rachael Ray Show for bringing out my inner foodie last Fall!

I have tons of more posts on the way that you’ll love, but you’ll have to wait! I promise I won’t take too long, can’t wait to tell you all about my recent foodie experiences in the city.

Well on that note–Eat, Drink, and Be Merry! :D

#SCBD Holiday Find: EE Cookies!

About a week or so ago, I got one of the best things anyone who loves food  dessert can possibly get. EE Cookies sent me a dozen of their unique cookies to try and they are right when they say these are not your ordinary cookies. So if you have a friend who is a cookie lover I highly recommend you get them a dozen cookies. They won’t be disappointed, all the cookies are jam-packed with chocolate chips, nuts, or fruit– how it should be! This pretty much says it all.

In my dozen, I received about four of each of these flavors:

Old Fashioned Chocolate Chip: delicious and jam-packed with chocolate chips

Dark Chocolate Chunk with Dried Cherries: I think the picture says it all, perfect for the dark chocolate lovers in your life.

Triple Chocolate Chip with Pecan: I’m currently munching on one of these and it is a great size, with great flavor!

Oatmeal with Dried Cranberries, Blueberries, & Walnuts: My favorite and currently my new favorite breakfast. I love how healthy it is since it has oatmeal in it and the dried fruit is top notch! It’s  a perfect little bit in the morning!

I’m so happy I was able to try EE Cookies and will definitely consider them for holiday gifts!  You can order your cookies online at their online shop, here. Plus, if you use the code HOLIDAY20 you can get 20% off your order at check out– can you say deal?! YES!

They also have a new home at 10 Waverly place inside “Brad’s” at NYU so you can stop by and grab some of our fresh, baked on site cookies, brownies and other delicious baked goods fresh in the case if you don’t want to order online.

I can see how they keep such a loyal fan base since they started in 2009! So if you have a few minutes, check out their site, order some cookies, and maybe even join the Cookie of the Month Club– you’ll be in for a delicious endeavor! They have tons of ordering options at the online store with plenty of creative deals for the cookie lover in your life!

Happy Eating– there is nothing wrong with having a sweet tooth especially with cookies this delicious!

#SCBD Quick & Easy Homemade Chicken Tenders

So tonight I made & ate homemade chicken tenders with a baked potato & sauteed string beans (not pictured) for dinner. The meal was great and if you’ve seen my tweets lately you know I’ve been trying to perfect my chicken tender recipe. And tonight, with the assistance of my roommate Leah, I figured it out. Here’s the recipe:

#SCBD Quick & Easy Chicken Tenders

Ingredients:

  •  2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of flour
  • about a cup of original breadcrumbs
  • about a teaspoon of garlic powder
  • about a teaspoon of onion powder
  • about a teaspoon of Goya Adobo seasoning (spicy or regular)
  • dash of salt & pepper
  • about 1 lb of thinly sliced raw, chicken breasts/chicken tenders (either works)

Instructions:

  1. First before anything take some EVOO (keep it on hand you may use more) and put it in a medium sized frying pan, make sure a light layer covers the whole pan then turn up the heat and let it warm up for about ten minutes on medium to medium/high heat so once you’ve prepared everything you’re ready to fry the chicken.
  2. Next,  get out your flour and put it in a small bowl. Next, prepare your breadcrumbs in a small bowl — make sure you add the garlic powder, onion powder, and Adobo into the breadcrumb bowl & mix it with any utensil quickly. Add dash of slat & pepper to the breadcrumbs for taste if you’d like.
  3. Crack two eggs in a separate bowl and whip them quickly for about a minute with a fork or spoon, add salt to taste.
  4. If you are using thin breasts cut them into halves or thirds depending on your preference. If you have pre-packaged, raw chicken tender pieces you can skip that since they already a perfect size. I got a great deal for a ton at Fairway for like $3 the other week and finished the rest tonight. I’m huge supporter of fresh rather than frozen, it’s much more cost effective, too!
  5. Now here’s the fun part–take your chicken and dip it in the egg so it covers the whole piece, then dip it into the flour, dip it back into the egg and then into the breadcrumb mix and onto the frying pan.
  6. I fry each piece for about 3-4 minutes so they are golden brown, feel free to add more EVVO accordingly especially if you’re making a big batch. Continue this until each piece of chicken is done. You may want to wash your hands in between batches if you make a lot like I did tonight, they get messy!
  7. Once all the tenders are fried–viola, you’ve now made homemade chicken tenders!
  8. Time to sit back, relax, and enjoy your homemade chicken tenders! :)

I now refuse to buy frozen or even get chicken tenders when I go out because they are so easy to make at home. If you have your ingredients ready it takes about 15 minutes tops & that’s including set-up. Plus, it’s a great meal for about $10-12 depending on which chicken you get. They are my go-to recipe when I have chicken on hand and I want to make something quick after work!

I’d love to what you think of the recipe once you’ve made it so feel free to leave comments!

Happy Eating! :)

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