Tag Archives: 118th Street

DJ Saturdays at The Cecil in Harlem

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DJ Saturdays at The Cecil in Harlem are making Saturday afternoons extra fun. Who doesn’t want a little beat with their bite!  Relax and shake off the week’s worries to the beats of the World, Jazz and Soul music, spun by various DJ’s.

This Saturday March 22 DJ Stormin’ Norman will be spinning from  2- 6pm.  Next Saturday March 29 DJ Center will be spinning from 2 – 6pm.  Check out the DJ schedule below and enjoy great music and food and people at The Cecil in Harlem!

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The Cecil
210 West 118th Street Harlem NY
(212)866-1262
THECECILHARLEM.COM

The Legendary Minton’s Supper Club to open again in Harlem

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Photo: Melissa Hom

A return to elegance in the historic village of Harlem.  The day has come for Minton’s to open officially to the public Monday, October 21st.  The Cecil next door and jointly owned just opened last month with a bang and hasn’t stopped since.  Already considered in a league of it’s own in this area.  See our previous write up on The Cecil Restaurant in Harlem (Review).

We look forward to celebrating the reopening of Minton’s with such a past history of Harlem’s jazz greats when it was once called Minton’s Playhouse.  This venue will require that men wear jackets.  The attire (dress code) is formal and it will be nice to see women and men fill the room with a diversity of styles while enjoying live jazz music.  A very timely decision to open (reopen) this historic jazz club with Harlem on the pulse now more than ever in the New York scene.

Looking forward to experiencing Minton’s next week.  Dress to impress and come out to enjoy good jazz and what looks like to be great food.  Take a peek at the menu below.

Here are a couple photos of entrees you can expect from the menu.  Looking forward to trying the Rib-Eye steak.  Minton’s MENU.

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Photo: Melissa Hom – Wagyu Rib-eye with bone

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Photo: Melissa Hom – Crisp Skate Wing with Manila Clams

Minton’s Supper Club
206 West 118th Street
New York, New York 10026
(212) 243-2222
www.mintonsharlem.com

*Photos from Grub Street and Minton’s Facebook Page.

The Cecil Restaurant in Harlem (Review)

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The Cecil Restaurant in Harlem

We recently dined at Harlem’s newest upscale restaurant The Cecil. It was a night to remember.  And we look forward to our next visit.

The Cecil was created by New York businessman Richard Parsons and chef Alexander Smalls.  It is “New York City’s first Afro-Asian-American brasserie…Inspired by the travels, exploration and study of the African Diaspora of Chef Smalls.  The Cecil will offer a global adventure in tastes and flavors as diverse and dynamic as the community in which the restaurant resides. Its goal is to connect communities through food, comfort and hospitality.”

Alexander Smalls of Cafe Beulah fame is in charge of the food here and at Minton’s which is just next door and will be opening this month.  Joseph Johnson, known as Chef JJ, is in the kitchen.  And Jenny Lee is the pastry chef.

The Cecil is in lower central Harlem, a few blocks north from the 2/3 train, the Harlem Meer in Central Park, and adjacent to Jazz club Minton’s, formerly known as Mintons’ Playhouse, which is in the National Register of Historic Places.

Our party of four entered through the main door.   The receptionists to our right greeted us warmly and whisked us passed tables along a long window bank to the right and a large bar area to the left into a beautiful, high ceilinged, spacious room – completely unexpected and a refreshing surprise.

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The Cecil – Press Release

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We were fortunate enough to be seated at the chef’s table which is a wonderful booth located such that we could take in the comings and goings of staff and diners all evening long.

The service was excellent and attentive from beginning to end.   This was no doubt a tribute to Beatrice, the Director of Operations, who has known one of our fellow diners for many years, and who spent time with us throughout the night.

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We started our meal with several wonderful cocktails made by bartenders whose pedigree includes one of the city’s best bars 67 Orange, where making fine drinks is an art form.

We were then presented with an assortment of appetizers.  The Hand-Made Bread Basket was tasty and included several dipping sauces that were smooth and rich.  The Collard Green Salad and the Spinach and Black Lentil Salad were fresh, crisp and very well seasoned.  The Afro / Asian / American Oxtail Dumplings were nestled in a smooth sauce with a hint of curry and were mouth-watering.  The Broiled Giant Spicy Prawns were fiery with a Piri Piri Sauce resting on a flavorful Yam Flapjack.  And the Spicy Crispy Ginger Squid was also good paired with Okra and accompanied by a Sweet Chili Peanut Sauce.  The appetizers  were plentiful and a delicious preview of the main courses to come.

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Our main courses consisted of the very flavorful Rice and Vegetable Wok Bar with Sweet Brown Rice and Wok Prawns, Moist Gullah Jumbo Shrimp Burger, perfectly cooked Grilled Beef Petite Tenderloin and delicious Black Benne Seed Ahi Tuna.  Conversation at our table stopped as we enjoyed every bite of our meals.  Difficult as it was to share, we all tried a little of each others’ meals.  The steak was especially memorable – large, lean, grilled and savory.  The Ahi Tuna was PERFECT.  Nice sized pieces cooked rare with Bok Choy, Coriander Yusu, Curry Crunch along with Chinese Sausages.  Really unique and worth trying.  Also highly recommended by Alexander Smalls himself was the Cinnamon Scented Fried Guinea Hen.  We will have to try this on our next visit.

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Black Benne Seed Ahi Tuna

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Our meal was topped off with a variety of warm and cold treats, one of which was a rice pudding creme brûlée accompanied with lycgee ice cream.  Amazing.

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Rice Pudding Creme Brûlée

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During our stay our meal was punctuated by visits from Alex and Beatrice, as well as our wonderful server, all of whom helped us navigate the richness of the experience that is Cecil’s.

The crowd was cosmopolitan and well dressed.  The Saturday night that we were there, Melissa Harris-Perry and Joy-Ann Reid were sitting in the bar / lounge area, and the following evening, Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon stopped by for dinner.

The decor consists of dark tones and leathers with mesh textures.  The entrance lounge and bar area are separate from the main dining room  - we really liked the layout.  At night with the lighting, artwork and grand scale of everything, this really comes into full effect.  The space is airy, has a wide variety of seating options, soaring ceilings, and floor to ceiling windows with just the right kind of blinds (almost appeared as a mesh like material from where we were sitting) to keep things private while not closing you in.  Their artwork is very interesting, big in scale yet not busy or overcrowded.  Better to have a few select pieces of art than many mediocre ones. One of our favorites is a sculpture of sorts which is the centerpiece of the bar, and which is really not to be missed.  The light fixtures are very interesting as well.  In particular the one below which is located in the entrance.

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Lighting in the entrance

The food is a collage of flavors from afrika and asia, so well blended that they will have you longing for another visit.

The Cecil
210 West 118th Street
New York, NY 10026
(212) 866-1262
thececilharlem.com  

Previous post (NEW) The Cecil – Opens Today In Harlem

The HarlemGarage Introduction and Mixer on Thursday, October 10th

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We are excited to help spread the word about a unique mixer for the Harlem community on Thursday, October 10th, at a new space the HarlemGarage.  This event will provide “an evening of networking and social media which affords a prestigious and diverse group of bloggers, marketers, and Harlem locals, the opportunity to enjoy an evening among their peers, in the newly opened HarlemGarage space.”

The evening will include mini presentations from local organizers and meetup groups and provide a perfect opportunity to visit with people you would like to meet in the community.

We at HaremCondoLife are looking forward to visiting with friends and bloggers that we already know as well as meeting new ones we have never met.  It’s a large space so tell a friend.  It’s $10:00 to attend.  Please click on the link harlemgarage.eventbrite.com for further information                                                                                     and to learn more about HarlemGarage.  See you there!

Introducing HarlemGarage
Mike Street
Thursday, October 10, 2013
6:00 PM to 9:00 PM
(Located at 318 w 118th Street and Frederick Douglass Blvd)

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