Wednesday, January 9, 2013

NYC Restaurant Week Winter 2013 and Spinoffs

A morsel of goodness that is usually spawned from the invasion of one culture by another is the food that emerges from the unholy alliance.

Le Colonial brings the faraway world of French-occupied Indochina to New York with black&white photographs, ceiling fans. And, hopefully, good eats such as Com Tay Cam (ginger and soy braised chicken in clay pot with shiitake mushrooms and onion served over Jasmine rice with bok choy and soft-boiled egg 23 (available as vegetarian dish; see Le Colonial video above.)

Le Colonial ( is one of the more than 300 restaurants participating in the much imitated NYC Restaurant Week. The Winter 2013 "week" starts Monday (14 Jan.) and officially shutters on 8 Feb. (There is every expectation that it will be extended.) Reservations are being accepted now.

Restaurant Week is an opportunity for diners to sample the menu of some of New York's finest dining establishments for a fraction of the regular price. At Junoon, that could potentially mean Piri-piri Shrimp (Shrimp in a goan chili sauce with avocado and jicama salad).

At Junoon, shrimp is a big fish. Photo from Junoon.

It could be said that shrimp is a passion or obsession at Junoon (which is what it means in Urdu), for there are several such dishes on the menu. Some of them are listed on the Restaurant Week menu, too. (

For the first time since 2006, the cost of the deal has increased slightly to $25 for a three-course prix-fixe lunch and $38 for three-course prix-fixe dinner (excluding beverages, gratuities and taxes).

Like its younger economy-stimulating cousin, Fashion’s Night Out (, Restaurant Week has inspired countless copies around the world (Hong Kong, Lisbon, London, Mumbai, Paris, Rio de Janeiro) and scores across the United States. And why not? Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Plus, in these two cases, it is good business.

Just opened for the special meals today is Sacramento Dine Downtown Restaurant Week. The dinner-only deal at about 30 restaurants through 18 Jan. is three courses for $30. (

In addition to New York, next week also brings Virginia Beach Restaurant Week and San Diego Restaurant Week. At Virginia Beach, the more than 60 restaurants will be serving $10, two-course lunches and $20 and $30 three-course dinners. On the other coast in San Diego County, Amardeen Cafe ( and others will also offer a tiered-deal. Two-course lunches range from $10-$20; three-course dinners $20-$40. (,

Amardeen Cafe sets an enticng table of Lebanese and Mediterranean fare. Photo from Amardeen Cafe.

Some other restaurant weeks commencing in the next week or so:
South Carolina Restaurant Week (Columbia, Charleston, Hilton Head, Myrtle Beach, Greenville) 10-20 Jan.
Howard County, MD Restaurant Week 14-28 Jan.
Pittsburgh Restaurant Week 14-20 Jan.
San Francisco Dine About Town Restaurant Week 15-31 Jan.
Alexandria Restaurant Week (Virginia) 18-27 Jan.
Charlotte Restaurant Week (North Carolina) 18-27 Jan.

Kansas City Restaurant Week (Missouri) 18-27 Jan.
Ann Arbor Restaurant Week (Michigan) 20-25 Jan.
Madison Restaurant Week (Wisconsin) 20-25 Jan.
Philadelphia Center City Restaurant Week 20-25 Jan. / 27 Jan.-1 Feb.
Columbus Restaurant Week (Ohio) 21-26 Jan.
Los Angeles dine LA Restaurant Week 21 Jan.-1 Feb.
Newark Restaurant Week 21-27 Jan.
Triangle Restaurant Week (North Carolina: Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill) 21-27 Jan.

Visit to learn more about NYC Restaurant Week Winter 2013; Google “NAME OF CITY Restaurant Week” to find a Restaurant Week near you. Rx>

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