Tag Archives: Restaurant

NYC African Restaurant Week!!!








We are happy to announce that Panla and A Taste of Africa USA are hosting their first annual NY African Restaurant Week from Sunday, October 13th to Sunday, October 20th, 2013. We would like to invite you to participate in this exciting and unique opportunity which celebrates the best of African cuisine and culture. 

Contact us at for more info!!!!

Please feel free to ask your friends and colleagues to support the participating restaurants and be part of the first ever NYC African Restaurant Week.

The African Restaurant & Food Week (Oct13 – 20) is a cultural event that celebrates the best of the African Cuisine, wine, chefs, artisans, restaurant owners in both African and non-African restaurants across the city.

Madiba Restaurant BUKA Nigerian Restaurant, BrooklynPonty Bistro, Jollof , Tolani , Queen of Sheba, Le Souk Harem, Les Ambassades, Shrine ,La CAYE ,Toast 105

Purchase Tickets Here!!!


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BLACK Cuisine: Restaurant Secrets Putting Your Health at Risk

When you’re dining out, the last thing on your mind is the safety of your food. But after learning these industry secrets, it might become the first thing you consider. Learn what you can do to ensure that your dining experience is just as safe as it is delicious.


Secret: You’re More at Risk for Food Poisoning After 8 p.m.

Although it can feel sophisticated to dine out later, the closer you get to closing time, the more likely you are to get a compromised meal because the ingredients were prepped hours before, giving bacteria plenty of time to multiply. Additionally, the kitchen may not be in ideal condition as your meal is prepared. The fryers have accumulated the build-up of an entire night’s service, plus the oil isn’t fresh anymore. Instead of making your food crispy, the grease just soaks into your food. Plus, the kitchen is in cleanup mode, so your dish could be being prepared next to a station that’s getting cleaned, risking contamination from the spray solution.

If you’re going to dine late, try to order something that’s grilled, broiled or boiled. You want to get something that’s cooked (as opposed to something served raw, like salad) so there’s a greater chance of killing off any dangerous bacteria.

Secret: Menus Can Be Dirtier Than Toilet Seats

Menus are rarely properly cleaned, and every person who comes through a restaurant touches them. A recent test by The Dr. Oz Show uncovered 7 out of 7 sample menus from restaurants in the New York City area were covered in bacteria, including fecal bacteria like E.coli and pneumonia-causing streptococcus.

Grip the menu by the top corners instead of holding it by the bottom. Most people hold the menu by the lower half, so you’ll be minimizing your exposure to bacteria.

Secret: If the Music Is Loud, You’re Going to Overeat

The louder the tunes, the more energy you’ll feel—meaning you’ll eat and leave quicker, resulting in a higher profit for the restaurant. The problem is that because you’re eating so quickly, you don’t have time to realize you’re full. Often, this results in over-ordering and overeating.

Don’t give your full order up front; instead, order each course separately. When you control the experience, you’ll eat slower and eat less.

Secret: Always Pack the Leftovers Yourself

When you give your half-finished dinner to your server to have it boxed up, remember, there’s no special “leftover boxing-up station.” Your plate is left in the kitchen next to dirty dishes and garbage. Your roll could land on the floor and then could be put back on your plate. Additionally, you have no idea how your food will get into your leftover container; it could be with someone’s bare hands that have just wiped down a table.

Always ask for the to-go container yourself and pack your leftovers at the table.

Courtesy of


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BLACK Cuisine: Les Ambassades

A couple of Sundays ago two colleagues, a neighborhood friend, myself and three children age ranging from 3 to 11 arrived at Les Ambassades in Harlem, and boy was it a full house…. inside and out that is. We didn’t have a reservation or thought of making one, heck it’s a boulangerie!!!

The versatile, largely Senegalese kitchen crew slings recipes from France, North and West Africa, Vietnam, the Caribbean, and Italy, not to mention all-American omelettes, salads, and meat dishes.
Upon arrival we waited for what seemed to be an eternity to be seated. Waiting gave us the opportunity to scope the place out. The restaurant would’ve been cozy had it not been for so many tables in such tight quarters. As you enter to your left, an assortment of pastries is seen through a glass bar and behind the counter are the waiters and waitresses uniformed in black tee’s and black slacks, hustling through the many orders they had to ring up. The decor is warm and inviting with shades of oranges and browns. Paintings adorned the whole place beautifully.

Finally seated, adjacent to a large flat screen t.v slightly above the entrance door was a soccer game which took the attentions of both the employees and guests alike in place took longer to receive a menu. We were greeted by this young lady who was very polite and pleasant ready to take our orders. We ordered Grilled Salmon with Fried Plantains $13.50(with cucumbers & onion salsa served with warm potatoes & basmati rice(optional)) Grilled Tilapia with Fried Plantains $12.50, Hamburger Alibaba $9.oo ( grilled beef, melted cheese, fried egg, side of french fries served on a burger bun. with a side of french fries),Steak Au Poivre (Sirloin) $12.50, Sizzling Garlic Shrimp (served with rice) $12.50. All dishes I felt were proportionality sized with the price. The only negative, which turned out not to be a negative, was that my Salmon dish was underseasoned but with the combinations of salsa and plantains, gave the salmon the flavor it was lacking.

Everything we had was very good to the eyes, taste buds and our pockets which made our Sunday brunch a delight.

So if you like Senegalese cuisine or if you are unfamiliar and want to try something different here in Harlem check out Les Ambassades. Not recommended for small children or even large groups because seats are limited.
2200 8th Ave
(between 118th St & 119th St)
New York, NY 10026


Mon-Thu, 7am-2am; Fri, 7am-3am; Sat-Sun, 8am-3am


  • Breakfast
  • Brunch – Weekend
  • BYOB
  • Delivery
  • Great Desserts
  • Late-Night Dining
  • Lunch
  • Outdoor Dining
  • Smoking Area
  • Take-Out
  • Catering

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Remembering the “Queen of Soul Food” Sylvia Woods

Sylvia Woods, a New York City icon not only in the culinary world but to the Harlem community died Thursday afternoon at her Mount Vernon home, She was 86 and had been battling Alzheimer’s disease, family members said in a statement.

She died just as Mayor Bloomberg was paying tribute to the 50th anniversary of Sylvia’s at a gala reception at Gracie Mansion.
“We lost a legend today,” the mayor said.

Upon hearing the news, the Rev. Al Sharpton offered fond memories of the owner’s historical location. “Sylvia’s has been more than a restaurant, it has been a meeting place for black America,” he said.

Sylvia trained to become a beautician in New York and also ran a beauty shop in South Carolina. With a loan from her mother. Woods and late husband,Herbert deemed it fit to start their own restaurant business in 1962; which started as a 36 seat lunch counter. During the early 1990s the business expanded and now seats up to 450 people. It also has a catering business. Sylvia came out with her own line of soul food products ranging from sauces to cook books that are sold nationally.

“Ms. Woods was surrounded by a host of family and loved ones,” the statement from her family read. “The family is thankful for your prayers.”

In lieu of flowers, the family said it would appreciate donations to the Sylvia and Herbert Woods Scholarship Endowment Foundation,  in which the family created in 2001  which provides scholarships to Harlem children.

Funeral arrangements are still being finalized.

Our Prayers goes out to the Woods family.


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Posted by on July 19, 2012 in BLACK Cuisine, Culinary


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BLACK Events: Taste of the Caribbean 2012


The Taste of the Caribbean event was being showcased at The Hyatt Regency Miami, on June 20th-24th 2012 with all chefs from the Caribbean competing for their native homeland. This event was one event not to be missed, besides the delicious plates offered under one roof, The Taste of the Caribbean conducted seminars, educating and inspiring ones passion for the culinary arts .

Following are all of the honors bestowed at Taste of the Caribbean:

  • Caribbean Culinary Team of the Year, sponsored by U.S. Dairy Export Council: presented to the Puerto Rico Culinary Team
  • Caribbean Chef of the Year, sponsored by Sysco: presented to Devon Joseph, Trinidad & Tobago
  • Caribbean Pastry Chef of the Year, sponsored by Albert Uster Imports: presented to Pablo Colon, Puerto Rico
  • Caribbean Bartender of the Year: presented to Jamaal Bowen, Barbados
  • Caribbean Junior Chef of the Year: presented to Isaiah Connel, Trinidad & Tobago
  • Hans Schenk Commemorative Award for the Most Innovative Menu: presented to the Barbados Culinary Team
  • Best Use of Chocolate, sponsored by Albert Uster Imports: presented to Dulish Perera, St. Lucia, for Wild Almond Brownie with dark chocolate mousse
  • Most Innovative Dish: presented to Jouvens Jean, Haiti
  • Most Creative Bartender: presented to Daniyel Jones, Trinidad & Tobago
  • Most Creative Rum Drink: presented to Daniyel Jones, Trinidad & Tobago
  • Most Creative Vodka Drink: presented to Daniyel Jones, Trinidad & Tobago
  • Most Creative Non-Alcoholic Drink: presented to Roberto Rodriguez, Puerto Rico
  • Best Team for Taste of the Islands: presented to Haiti Culinary Team
  • The Spirit of the Competition: presented to the Anguilla Culinary Team

Certified Angus Beef Competition sponsored by Certified Angus Beef®

  • Best Use of Certified Angus Beef: presented to Joel Rodriguez, Puerto Rico
  • Gold Medals: Joel Rodriguez, Puerto Rico
  • Silver Medals: Kenneth Molyneaux, British Virgin Islands; Garcia Brown, Jamaica and Charron McKenzie, Bahamas
  • Bronze Medals: Shurandy Carolie, Curacao; Odeen Martin, St. Lucia; Darren Connor, Anguilla; Arnold Jupiter, Trinidad & Tobago and Negust Kaza, U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Honorary Mention: Christine Dupoux, Haiti and Wilwore Jordan, Barbados

Caribbean Cheese Competition sponsored by U.S. Dairy Export Council

  • Best Use of Cheese: presented to Emmerly Gerald, U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Gold Medals: Emmerly Gerald, St. Lucia
  • Silver Medals: Devon Joseph, Trinidad & Tobago; Gary Goolrachan, U.S. Virgin Islands and Carlos Anthonij, Curacao
  • Bronze Medals: Brian Lumley, Jamaica; Kevin Pratt, Bahamas; Tanya Malone, British Virgin Islands; Jonathan Hughes, Anguilla and Angel Santiago, Puerto Rico
  • Honorable Mentions: Ron Duprat, Haiti and Nathan Chrichlow, Barbados

Seafood Competition

BoulderShares LLC contributed $2,000 to be donated to the charity of choice of the Best Use of Seafood Prize Winner.

  • Best Use of Seafood: presented to Jouvens Jean, Haiti
  • Gold Medals: Jouvens Jean, Haiti and Dennis Vanterpool, U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Silver Medals: Rensley de Jongh, Curacao; Kenneth Whittington, Barbados; Shanique Bodie, Bahamas; Imran Ashton, British Virgin Islands; Dadrian Cooke, Jamaica and Joel Rodriguez, Puerto Rico
  • Bronze Medals: Delroy Fred, St. Lucia; Claudio Gumbs, Anguilla and Trinidad & Tobago 

Caribbean Chef Medal Presentations sponsored by Sysco

  • Gold Medals: Devon Joseph, Trinidad & Tobago; Justin Hughes, Anguilla and Elijah Jules, St. Lucia
  • Silver Medals Vicky Coles, Haiti; Jamal Small, Bahamas; Kenneth Molyneaux, British Virgin Islands; Angel Santiago, Puerto Rico and Negust Kaza, U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Bronze Medals: Carlos Anthonij, Curacao; Randie Anderson, Jamaica and Henderson Butcher, Barbados

Caribbean Junior Chef Medal Presentations

  • Gold Medals: Isaiah Connel, Trinidad & Tobago; Julio Lamberty, Puerto Rico
  • Silver Medals: Kyle Boursiquot, Haiti; Dwayne Sinclair, Bahamas; Keulys Enrique Gonzalez; Javon Cummins, Barbados and Paulyn Eugene, St. Lucia
  • Bronze Medals: Aisheron Phillips, Curacao; Mikhala Bagot, British Virgin Islands; Joseph Hodge, Anguilla and Shaneica Case, Jamaica

Caribbean Pastry Chef Medal Presentations sponsored by Albert Uster Imports

  • Gold Medals: Pablo Colon, Puerto Rico and Eric Burrell, U.S. Virgin Islands
  • Silver Medals: Lincoln Peterkin, Jamaica; Dulish Perera, St. Lucia; Carlos Anthonij, Curacao; Kendell Mulzac, Trinidad & Tobago; Shirmel Gumbs, Anguilla; Wenzel Brown, Bahamas and Valery Abrahan, Haiti
  • Bronze Medals: Ansony Salmon, British Virgin Islands and Janelle Crawford, Barbados

Caribbean Bartender Medal Presentations

  • Gold Medal: Jamaal Bowen, Barbados and Daniyel Jones, Trinidad & Tobago
  • Silver Medals: Gonzalo Placencia Perez, Curacao and Roberto Rodriguez, Puerto Rico
  • Bronze Medal: Henry Prince, British Virgin Islands; Gerald Knowles, Bahamas; Michou Angus, Haiti; Melissa Fletcher, Jamaica; Taffy Hodge, Anguilla; Algernon Boston, U.S. Virgin Islands and Barkus Henry, St. Lucia

Caribbean Ice Carving Medal Presentation

  • Gold Medal & Ice Carver of the Year: Randie Anderson, Jamaica.
  • Silver Medal: Imran Ashton, British Virgin Islands.
  • Bronze Medal: Ancillemo Solomon, Bahamas.

Caribbean Team Medal Presentations sponsored by U.S. Dairy Export Council

  • Gold Medals: Puerto Rico Culinary Team and Trinidad & Tobago Culinary Team.
  • Silver Medals: Anguilla Culinary Team; Curacao Culinary Team; U.S. Virgin Islands Culinary Team; Haiti Culinary Team; Barbados Culinary Team.
  • Bronze Medals: Jamaica Culinary Team; Bahamas Culinary Team; British Virgin Islands Culinary Team and St. Lucia Culinary Team.
Eleven teams participated in Taste of the Caribbean, hailing from Anguilla, The Islands of The Bahamas, Barbados, British Virgin Islands, Curacao, Haiti, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, St. Lucia, Trinidad & Tobago and United States Virgin Islands.
All in all, the winners came from all over the Caribbean and no one team dominated the competition.
CONGRATS to all participants.

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Posted by on July 11, 2012 in BLACK Cuisine, BLACK Events


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BLACK Cuisine: Macadamia Nut Crusted Salmon Stuffed w/ Shitake Mushrooms, Herbed Goat Cheese, Arugula and Lemon

6 ounce Salmon (fresh, skinned) – 2 thick pieces of salmon are ideal
1 tablespoon Pecorino cheese, shredded
1/4 cup Chopped Macadamia Nuts
1/2 cup Shitake Mushrooms (sliced)
2 cups Fresh Arugula
1 clove Garlic, minced
1 teaspoon Granulated garlic powder
1 lemon (sliced into rings)
1 teaspoon Smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon Fresh dill, chopped
1 teaspoon Fresh cracked black pepper
1 teaspoon Chipotle hot sauce
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoon White Wine
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Fresh lemon juice

Arugula Pesto:
1 cup Fresh Arugula
2 Tbs – Pecorino Cheese
1 Tbs – Pine Nuts
1/3 Cup Olive oil
1 Clove Garlic, minced
1 tsp. Lemon Juice
1 teaspoon Fresh parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon Cracked black pepper
1/2 teaspoon Crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

Take a 5-6 oz piece of fresh salmon (if frozen, please allow time to unthaw in the refrigerator) and use a paring knife to cut a 2 -3 inch deep slit into the salmon creating a pocket for the filling.
In a small mixing bowl combine your lemon juice, dill, garlic, hot sauce, mustard, pepper, and white wine. Place fish pieces in a dish and generously pour marinade over the fish. Cover with a lid or plastic wrap and let sit for 30 minutes in refrigeration. Remember for more pronounced flavors, the salmon can sit overnight as well.
To make the pesto, Prepare an ice water bath in a large bowl, and bring a large pot of water to a boil. Put the arugula in a large sieve and plunge it into the boiling water. Immediately immerse all the arugula and stir so that it blanches evenly. Blanch for about 15 seconds. Remove, shake off the excess water, then plunge the arugula into the ice water bath and stir again so it cools as fast as possible. Drain well.
Squeeze the water out of the arugula with your hands until very dry. Roughly chop the arugula and put in a blender. Add the garlic, salt and pepper to taste, olive oil, pine nuts, lemon, parsley to the blender. Blend for at least 30 seconds. In this way the green of the arugula will thoroughly color the oil. Add the cheese and pulse to combine. Stuff the seasoned salmon with the mushrooms, arugula, lemon and goat cheese. Top with the chopped macadamia nuts and broil in the oven on 450 degrees for approximately 15 minutes until golden and the salmon is firm yet moist. Depending on the intensity of your broiler, keep an eye out; you don’t want to burn the dish.
Serve with your pesto and lemon wedges garnish.

2 Servings

As seen on ABC 7 Chicago with “Next Food Network Star Season 8” contestant, Chef Judson Todd Allen. 


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BLACK Cuisine: Negril Village

New York….The New Negril Village

After many months of hearing about the Caribbean restaurant Negril Village nestled in Greenwich Village, I decided to see for myself what all the buzz was about.  Upon arriving late Sunday evening, I at first glance noticed how strikingly fashionable and cozy the place felt. The decor was of vibrant earthy tones, that can make any frown turn into a smile. Let’s not forget the bamboo flooring.There were paintings presumed of local artists from Jamaica which in a sense prepared you and your taste buds for what’s to come.

I was immediately seated…literally right next to the bar which gave me a birds eye view of the interaction between the bartender and the waiter/waitress. The staff were uniformed in black button down shirt and black trousers. As busy as this place was, the staff still managed to keep an upbeat spirit by singing and bopping to the reggae tunes which I later also partook in. The music wasn’t overpoweringly loud which was great.

At length, I not being Jamaican was unsure what to order but my waiter, patiently walked me through the menu and  recommended that I try Rasta Pasta with Jumbo Shrimp. Instead of water I opted to try their Guava Mojito ($12) which had a reasonable amount of alcohol but not a trace of the flavors of “guava.” To my amazement my food took little under 15 minutes to be brought out to my table.  My Rasta Pasta w/ Jumbo Shrimp ($23) was surprisingly warm, comforting and generously portioned. The jumbo shrimp was very succulent, fresh and well seasoned.

I wasn’t informed of any specials for Sunday evenings nor did I bother to ask.

Overall if you are in the NY area and want to take a trip to the Caribbean without breaking the bank, Negril Village is perfect. The main dining room is large enough to cater to any event while the Rhum lounge on the lower level is where the real party is. The menu varies from Ackee & Saltfish to Curry vegetable Tofu. The pricing is reasonable but beware of the gratuity. Negril Village is family friendly,perfect for a first date and just a nice place for a drink or two after work.

Would I go again you ask? Of course I will..I need a vacation!!
Negril Village in New York is the next best thing to Negril, Jamaica…

”Let your taste buds be the judge and everything will be Irie”

-BLACK Palette

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Posted by on April 3, 2012 in BLACK Cuisine, Culinary, Culture


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