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Gelato Ti Amo

Only one week of Broadway Bites remains (until October, at least), which begs the very important question: Have you had your gelato–and Korean tacos and mushroom dumplings and Turkish pastries and beer floats–today?

As the market winds down, we wanted to give a special shout to one of the vendors who always puts a smile on our faces, not just because his gelato is so darn good. Luca Meacci is the passionate Italian expat behind the stateside branch of Gelato Ti Amo, which launched in Cortona, Italy, in 2010. Meacci tried the gelato on a visit to his home region of Arezzo in 2011, met with the founders the very next day, and the rest is (sweet) history.

We love Meacci’s gelato for its purity of flavor and its obsessive devotion to top-notch ingredients. Read on to learn more, and get thee to Broadway Bites to taste for yourself!

UrbanSpace: What inspired you to bring Gelato Ti Amo stateside?
Luca Meacci: I have been living in New York for ten years now, and I was missing the taste of gelato that I grew up with! I am from Arezzo and I always go back in September. During the summer of 2011 I went to Cortona and tried some gelato. I immediately fell in love with the gelato and with Gelato Ti Amo. The next day I met with one of the founders about the possibility of bringing Gelato Ti Amo to New York City. I am someone that eats gelato all year round and I thought that it could be great for me to recreate that in the greatest city in the world.

US: For those who don’t know, can you explain the difference between gelato and ice cream?
LM: Yes. It’s very easy for me to answer that. The first difference is that gelato has less fat then ice cream. The churning speed is different. Ice cream is churned faster and harder than gelato to incorporate air into the mixture. Gelato is churned at a slower speed, which means not as much air is whipped into the mixture keeping it dense. Another difference is that Ice cream is heavy on the cream. In order to be legally labeled it is required to have at least 10 percent fat content . We don’t use any cream, we only use organic certified USDA approved Milk. And our fat content is only 4 percent. 

Gelato Ti AmoUS: Again, for those who don’t know: will you explain what sets your gelato apart from the rest?
LM: We get our milk and mascarpone from Mukki Latte, a milk company from Tuscany in business since 1954 and a USDA approved organic certified company, which is a synonym of quality. Just to give you an idea of how quality is important to us, we choose our products very carefully. Our raspberry, strawberries and figs come from Arezzo (Tuscany), lemons come from Sorrento (Naples), hazelnuts from Langhe (Barolo area, Piedmont), pistachios from Bronte (Sicily), chocolate, coconut and mango from the Caribbeans. If you go to one of our locations in Italy you will find exactly the same taste.

US: I know choosing one favorite flavor would likely be impossible, so how about choosing a favorite flavor for each season — spring, summer, winter and fall?
LM: Spring: strawberry sorbet
Summer: pistachio gelato
Winter: hazelnut gelato
Fall: mascarpone and figs gelato

Gelato Ti Amo

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For our first Broadway Bites Vendor Spotlight of the season, we caught up with Uri Scheft, the dough-kneading mastermind behind Union Square’s Breads Bakery. From sweet babkas and rugelach, to savory sandwiches and burekasim, Uri will be serving his spectacular baked goods from June 3rd to August 1st at Broadway Bites in Greeley Square.

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Sardine Toast

Rather than play it cool, we’ll admit that we were beyond thrilled when we heard that Chef George Mendes, the incredibly talented chef at the helm of ALDEA, would be launching a brand new concept at Mad. Sq. Eats.  Chef Mendes pitched the concept of 100 Sardines as the “bad little brother” of ALDEA, featuring classic Portuguese street food prepared with fresh, seasonal ingredients (think ramps)… and he’s absolutely delivered.  Since launching on May 2nd, 100 Sardines has fast established itself as one of the must popular, unique booths at this spring’s installment of Mad. Sq. Eats – market goers, journalists and influencers are completely obsessed with the food, the service and the atmosphere.

We spoke with Chef Mendes about 100 Sardines, and his first foray into the madness of food markets. Read more below!

1. ALDEA, your Michelin-starred restaurant, has been incredibly successful. What inspired you to venture beyond fine dining and tackle a completely different challenge, like Mad. Sq. Eats?

It was definitely a challenge, but I wanted to fulfill a desire for making rustic, fun food. We’ve never really done a menu of simple Portuguese dishes, so I saw this as something completely different; a way for us to grow another arm and do something casual and fun. Read More

Tofu and quinoa rollTwo Tablespoons is the brainchild of awesome vegetarian chef duo, Katya Kosar & Gosha Danilov.  These two are passionate about healthy food, offering dishes that are clean, locally grown, vegetarian and gluten-free – wow! We don’t know about you, but we always feel better when we eat fresh, real cuisine, and Two Tablespoons makes doing so easy and enjoyable.

This will be Two Tablespoons’ first time as a vendor at Mad. Sq. Eats and we highly suggest paying their booth a visit! They’ll be serving a fresh, seasonal menu that includes yummy summer rolls and glass noodle salads.  Here’s a little “behind the scenes” in the meantime.  Read More

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It’s time to pack away those winter coats and say hello to the sunshine. After what felt like an eternity of bitter coldness and snowfall, spring is finally here! Personally, we can’t think of a better way to bid farewell to those winter blues than with a celebratory margarita! Mexicue’s Passion Fruit Mango Margarita, to be more specific.

Made with passion fruit, mango, lemon-limeade, agave wine and Chili Lime salt (to garnish the rim), this margarita is the perfect fusion of sweet and tangy. We, for one, would have never thought of combining agave with wine, so we’re just thankful that Mexicue did! So head to Mexicue’s booth at #MadSqEats (opening May 2nd!) to see what all the talk is about. We’re sure you won’t be disappointed! 

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If you didn’t think you could have it all, then you’re simply mistaken. Thanks to Kicky’s Kitchen you can have your cake and ‘drink’ it too! The domestic diva, Kicky, fuses together two of our personal favorites: cocktails and cakes. Are you craving one already?! Her cocktail inspired cupcakes, otherwise known as ‘caketails’, are sure to satisfy anyone’s sweet tooth.

With Mad. Sq. Eats  opening just around the corner (May 2!), we decided to sit down with our awesome new vendor and chat about her delicious treats and big plans for the future. Read More

Mad. Sq. Eats Vendor List

April 14, 2014

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After surviving an indisputably brutal winter in NYC, we’re thrilled to announce that outdoor dining season is upon us yet again!  Mad. Sq Eats (#MadSqEats), now in its sixth year, will return to Worth Square on Friday, May 2nd.  The popular pop-up market is a collaboration between UrbanSpace and the Madison Square Park Conservancy; together, we’ve curated one of our best lineups yet.

New Mad. Sq. Eats vendors include: Pig & Khao, Takumi Taco, 100 Sardines by George Mendes, L&W Oyster Co., Two Tablespoons, Kicky’s Kitchen, and Brooklyn Oyster Party.

Mad. Sq. Eats veterans back for more include: The Cannibal, Roberta’s, Red Hook Lobster Pound, Bar Suzette, La Sonrisa Empanadas, Macaron Parlour, Mayhem & Stout, Mighty Balls, Asiadog, Nunu Chocolates, Momofuku Milk Bar, Sigmund’s, Stuffed Artisan Cannolis, Arancini Bros., Charlito’s Cocina, Doughnuttery, Mimi & Coco NY, Hong Kong Street Cart, Seoul Lee Korean BBQ, Mexicue, Melt Bakery, ilili and Calexico.

We’ll see you in the park!

Today’s spotlight is on delectable Broadway Bites and Mad. Sq. Eats vendor Asiadog.  Think New York street food staple (hot dogs, of course) + an Asian twist.  Asiadog is best known for their specialty hot dogs, topped with a variety of creative and innovative fixings.  Today, however, we’re going to take a closer look at their menu and highlight the lesser known eats that the company has to offer.

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Natural OliveWood Booth

On this cold winter morning, we’d like to introduce you to the wonderful vendors over at Natural OliveWood. They’re making their first appearance at this year’s Union Square Holiday Market, and we couldn’t be more excited to have them join the family. Owners Hatem and Walid were born and raised surrounded by olive trees in Sfax, Tunisia, and work with Kerri Giovanelli to bring their beautiful products to homes and kitchens all over the world.

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The Columbus Circle Holiday Market is a holiday shopping mecca, with over a 100 unique artisans selling gifts of every shape and size.

One of the new and more out-of-the-box additions to the 2013 market is BUTCH & harold, a company run by a pair of outgoing sisters, Michele and Ariane Gold.  Creators of the original “stickr frame”, BUTCH & harold offers a line of unique wall decals with a modern design aesthetic that have transformed the way that people display their personal photos.  All BUTCH & harold products are made of adhesive vinyl, in the USA.  The products are safe for walls and will adhere to any surface without leaving any sticky residue or peeling paint.  Everything is removable and reusable.  Each pack of “stickr frames” comes with 8 various size peel and stick picture frames ranging in size from 4×4 to 8×10. Read More