Chef and Menu Report Week of 6/23/14

Every week, we take a look at some new chefs and menus that have appeared across the country. Here’s this week’s roundup:

Photo Sasabune Omakase Modified: Flickr/erin/CC 4.0

Brunch is coming to Huertas in NYC.

RA Sushi is celebrating summer with a variety of new menu items available for a limited time. Running through the end of September, the chain is offering an appetizer of edamame wontons, several new rolls such as the chili shrimp role, and four summer salads, including a dill salmon cucumber salad. In addition to the new summer menu, RA Sushi is bringing back three of its most popular hand rolls for only $5.50 each, which will also available for a short time only. Summertime is the time for seafood, and RA Sushi wants to help you get your fill.

Napa Valley
Nestled in St. Helena, Archetype is a quintessential California wine country restaurant, offering dishes featuring local, seasonal ingredients by new executive chef Ryder Zetts of the Michelin-starred Solbar. Zetts oversees the culinary direction and all kitchen operations including menu creation and development. With experience spanning over a decade of executive-level culinary roles at various award-winning fine dining establishments, Zetts brings a new phase of culinary excellence to Archetype.

Las Vegas
Pool season is here, and that means daytime parties, cocktails and plenty of bikinis. Luckily, whetting your appetite at marquee Vegas restaurants won’t interfere with maintaining your figure. Diablo's Mexican Cantina at Monte Carlo offers the Skinny Margarita, a blend of citrus flavors mixed with club soda, agave, and fresh lime. Red Square Restaurant & Lounge at Mandalay Bay features the Chernobyl, a passionate mix of fruity flavors including vitamins and minerals without excess sugar and caffeine. It’s mixed with a hangover defense containing ginger root, which helps soothe the stomach and digestive system, and prickly pear extract to keep you hydrated and cleanse the liver.

Tria Taproom has launched a new two-course lunch prix fixe to help keep summer “Quick & Delicious.” Available daily from 12 to 4 p.m., there are four offerings for each course, and the meal runs just $14. As usual, there's a plethora of drafts on tap to choose from, and in addition to all the beer and wine, they've got non-alcoholic options on tap including Victory root beer and Sprecher cream soda.

New York
Brunch is coming to Huertas on the Lower East Side in a big, Spanish way starting July 5. It will of course include many different egg dishes, including the favorite “Huertas Rotos,” but chef/owner Jonah Miller is also introducing other brunch-friendly Basque-inspired dishes including selections of bocadillos, shared plates such as pimentón bacon, and sweet breakfast items like Spanish French toast. Wash it all down with refrescos served by the pitcher, a cerveza, or fresh fruit juice.

Known for its classic and soul-satisfying American cooking, Bubby’s High Line is now serving Midnight Brunch on Friday and Saturday nights from midnight to 4 a.m. Perfect for that late-night craving, the Midnight Brunch menu features satisfying dishes like blueberry pancakes, chicken and waffles, and steak and eggs. Don’t forget that Bubby's High Line also recently launched its traditional soda fountain, which serves up all of the classics, such as ice cream sodas, snowballs, and sundaes with a variety of homemade ice creams, syrups, and toppings​.

This Sunday, Claw Daddy's will be hosting "Craft Beer & Taste of New Orleans," featuring craft beers and small dishes inspired by the Bayou. For $25, ticket holders will receive five tickets good for beers and bites, with brew options that include New Orleans’ own Abita Beer plus Fire Island Beer Co., Smuttynose Brewing Co., Shiner Premium Beer, Peak Organic Brewing Company, Left Hand Brewing Company, Captain Lawrence Brewing Company, Ommegang Brewery, and Blue Point Brewing Company.  Meanwhile, the culinary team will be churning out a variety of bites including Cajun wings, fried calamari, Blue Point oysters, popcorn shrimp with mango salsa, and a catfish po’ boy.

Williamsburg hotspot Maison Premiere will be hosting their annual 4th of July party beginning at 12 p.m. on Friday, July 4 with oysters, drinks, chilled seafood, live music, and holiday specials from chef Lisa Giffen. The full dinner menu will be available starting at 5 p.m., and their famous oyster happy hour will be back on Saturday, July 5 during weekend hours.

Hill Country Barbecue Market in Brooklyn has announced the debut of outdoor dining on Willoughby Plaza, with a grand opening celebration on Thursday, July 10, 2014. "We're proud to be part of the growth and excitement of the Downtown Brooklyn community and to help energize Willoughby Plaza with an outdoor dining experience," said owner and CEO Marc Glosserman.  Executive chef Elizabeth Karmel will present a special menu of barbecue, sides, and desserts which will offer diners the chance to enjoy some of Hill Country's best-loved favorites on the plaza. Alcoholic beverages include a selection of draft and bottled beers, house wine, and sangria; a selection tea, lemonade, and fountain drinks will also be available.

Troy Liquor Bar, located in the bustling Meatpacking District, has decided to bring back the basics like cosmos, Long Island iced teas, fuzzy navels, tequila sunrises, and even classic shots like melon balls and kamakazis. In a city now full of certified mixologists and fancy cocktails that take several minutes to “create,” the bar is sure to stand out in the trendy neighborhood for bringing back the simplicity of these familiar standards. Troy recently launched their Summer Happy Hour that takes place Monday through Thursday from 6 to 8 p.m. The menu will include $4 pints, $6 glasses of wine, and $8 specialty cocktails. Guests can also grab a bite to eat from Troy’s delicious Bar Bites menu, with dishes like fried mac n’ chorizo, brioche grilled cheese, and their specialty, sweet and spicy Chex Mix.

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New Orleans
Tales of the Cocktail, the world’s premier cocktail festival, has been bringing together the most respected players in mixology for five days of cocktails, cuisine and culture for over a decade. On Thursday, July 17 at 8 p.m., Le Foret will host an official Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Dinner, featuring artisan port-finished bourbon, Angel’s Envy. Hosted by executive chef Brandon Felder and special guest Wes Henderson (Angel’s Envy co-brand creator/master brand ambassador), guests will enjoy five courses while sipping paired bourbon cocktails.

Kate Kolenda is the Restaurant/City Guide Editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @theconversant.