Tag Archives: Chocolat Restaurant Lounge

Harlem’s Battle of the Bars is back!

harlem park to park

For the second year in a row, top bars from across Harlem and Washington Heights/Inwood to compete for Title of “Best Uptown Bartender”

Mixologists from 30 of New York City’s best uptown bars from Harlem and Washington Heights/Inwood will try to wow bar goers between May 5th and 15th with delectable and original cocktails featuring sponsor spirit brands Hennessy V.S and Hendricks Gin.

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The Uptown Battle of the Bars is presented by Harlem Park to Park, a community improvement association in Central Harlem, and produced by Good Ice Marketing.

Participating bartenders will create signature original cocktails using their choice of ingredients, along with the featured spirits. Cocktails will be available to sample on Monday, May 5 and Monday, May 12th, between 6-10 pm at a special $8 discounted price. Visitors will have the opportunity to vote online from May 5 through the 15th at Instagram @UptownBattle for their favorite cocktail.

The bartenders from the top 12 bars with the highest votes will advance to compete for the title of Best Uptown Bartender at a showdown VIP finale event on May 19, from 6-10 pm, at Harlem Tavern on Frederick Douglas Blvd at 116th Street. At the final showdown, industry and celebrity judges, along with the audience, will taste creations by the mixologists featuring Hennessy V.S and Hendricks Gin.

The Showdown Finale includes 3 rounds of competition. In the first round the bartenders will have 10 minutes to create a cocktail using Hennessy V.S. For the second round, first round finalists will compete to create cocktails using Hendricks Gin. For the last round, the final 2 bartenders, with the assistance of fellow competitors, will use surprise secret ingredients — á la “Chopped” — to create original cocktails, using either of the 2 spirits for the winning title. Drinks will be judged on creativity, taste/complexity, originality and their crowd pleasing factor. Music will be provided by Dj Stormin’ Norman of Sundae Sermon.

“Harlem’s nightlife and bar scene has developed tremendously in the complexity and originality of offerings and concepts. From rum-based craft cocktail bars, to craft brew beer gardens and speakeasies, we are able to offer comparable entertainment options to what one has downtown,” said Harlem Park to Park Executive Director, Nikoa Evans-Hendricks.

“We also have an opportunity to highlight the amazing beverage talent that these establishments are attracting throughout the uptown community,” added Karl Franz Williams, founder and CEO of Good Ice Marketing and owner of mixology bar 67 Orange Street. “Harlem and Washington Heights are not only attracting top restaurants, but both neighborhoods are also attracting and grooming amazing beverage talent. This competition will help generate some visibility for this talented group while providing some exciting entertainment for the neighborhood.”

Tickets to the Showdown finale on May 19, at Harlem Tavern cost $35 in advance and $40 at the door and can be purchased at www.uptownbattleofbars.eventbrite.com. Admission includes discounted drink/appetizer specials and original cocktail samples. Harlem Tavern is located at 2153 Frederick Douglas Boulevard and 116th Street.

Event Rundown:

May 5 to 15: Bars from across Harlem and Washington Heights create signature cocktails available to the public for $8. The public can vote for favorite cocktail at Instagram @UptownBattle.

May 19: Top bartenders compete at Harlem Tavern for title of “Best Uptown Bartender.”

Participating Bars
5 and Diamond, 67 Orange Street, 9A Kitchen & Lounge, Billie’s Black, Cantina 1838, Cedric’s, Chocolat Restaurant & Lounge, Corner Social, Cove Lounge, Harlem Food Bar, Harlem Public, Harlem Tavern, Heights Tavern, La Bodega 47 Social Club, La Marina, Lido Harlem, Maison Harlem, Minton’s, Moca Lounge, Red Rooster Harlem, Settepani, Shrine World Music Venue, Silvana, Sylvia’s Restaurant, The Cecil, The Park 112 Restaurant & Lounge, Vinateria Restaurant & Bar, Ya Tenga

Harlem Restaurant & Retail Week Aug 15th – 31st

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Harlem Park To Park Presents Harlem Restaurant and Retail Week!  Starting Thursday, August 15th, Today!  Look for Prix Fixe 3 course Menu Lunch $20,13 and dinner $30,13 from many of your favorite Harlem Hot Spots.  Also Retailers will have on sale select items from $10,13 to $30,13.  The discount menu and select retail items will continue all the way until August 31st.

So go out and enjoy Harlem and save a little dinero while supporting your community!  See full list and info at www.facebook.com/harlemparktopark and www.twitter.com/harlempark2park

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CHOCOLÀT’S Sneak Peek Of New Menu – Harlem

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Southern Crispy Yard Bird with Honey Cayenne Sauce

Harlem Condo Life had the pleasure of  joining the owner of Chocolàt, Leon Ellis and their new Executive Chef, Joseph Guitierrez, along with fellow bloggers for a VIP Tasting at Chocolàt Restaurant Lounge in Harlem this week.

Joseph Guitierrez previous talents include The Coffee Shop, where he worked as Executive Sous Chef, a stint as Chef de Cuisine at Luna Park and Rockin’ River Ranch in Sedona, Arizona where he opened a bed and breakfast.  Chef Joseph and Leon Ellis were kind enough to allow us to sample items from the new menu.

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Short Rib Empanadas

If you are not already familiar with Chocolàt they are located on Harlem Restaurant Row in a large windowed corner space nicely situated on Frederick Douglass Boulevard and 120th Street.  The warm mocha and creme colored dining room has a very loft-like airy feel both spacious and inviting.  This 120-seat room is a great space for group get-togethers as it can easily accommodate large parties.  In addition they have a cool private dining (VIP room) which is available for reservation upon request.

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Joseph Guittierez and Leon Ellis

Leon Ellis who opened his first business MOCA Lounge in 2003, has proven his staying power as he now owns three successful businesses in Harlem all of which happen to be located on FDB.  Chocolat Restaurant Lounge, which I would describe as an upscale dining destination has had many celebrities visit such as Tina Fey, Sherri Shepherd, Victor Cruz, Mike Tyson, Danny Glover and Angela Bassett just to name a few.

It was a very hot and humid night this past Tuesday in Harlem and I was immediately pleased with the cool air conditioned room and the inviting bar.  The new Chef introduced himself to everyone and then proceeded to bring out the new items.  Those of us dining for this event all had our specific favorites.  First I’d like to mention that everything was delicious and the group of us dining all seemed pleasantly surprised with the items.  One of the entrees, The Southern Crispy Yard Bird was a favorite with the group.  However, my favorite chicken dish was the Jerk Chicken with Rice and Peas and Sweet Plantains.  VERY spicy, I loved it.

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Jerk Chicken (spicy)

Another stand out entree for me was the Grilled Scottish Salmon with Sautéed Kale and Mango Coulis.  Delicious, healthy, lite and refreshing for a warm summer night.  All of the appetizers were tasty.  My favorites were the Shrimp and Watermelon Salad and the Short Rib Empanadas.  The shrimp with the crumbled goat cheese, basil and lemon vinaigrette over the watermelon really did it for me.  A nice summery blend of flavors.  As a meat lover I could have had several of the empanadas but restrained to just having one.  Flavorful and well executed.  The desserts we sampled were the Jamaican Black Cake a la Mode and Pastellas with Guava and Queso.  Depending on what you are in the mood for I would recommend either one.  But I thought that the Pastellas with Guava and Queso served warm were amazing.  The perfectly baked pastry with the warmed quava filling is a new favorite of mine.  A fellow diner said that the Jamaican Black Cake was her favorite item of the night.  I suggest that you visit Chocolàt and decide for yourself.

Please read more on Joseph Gutierrez (Executive Chef) below and view the new menu at Chocolàt in Harlem.

Chocolàt offers Brunch, Lunch and Dinner Service Monday through Sunday.

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Famous Sesame Calamari Salad

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Shrimp and Watermelon Salad

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Blackened Mahi Mahi Satay

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Dessert – Pastellas with Guava and Queso (served warm) Delicious!

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CHOCOLÀT
2217-23 Frederick Douglass Blvd.
(Corner of 120th Street)
Harlem NY 10026
(212) 222-4545

Where To Watch ‘AND CELEBRATE’ The Presidential Election in Harlem

Tomorrow is the big day.  The voting booths will be open early in the morning so make sure you vote before work, lunchtime, during your break or after work.

Here are a few suggestions in Harlem where you can watch the Presidential Election Results roll in.  Click on the links below to find out what each restaurant has planned.  I know many of them, including Lido, Melbas and Red Rooster will be serving specialty cocktails and patriotic drink specials.

Red Rooster

Remember to Vote tomorrow!!!  Then when the evening comes around it’s time to eat, drink and celebrate!

Red Rooster, Melba’sLido, Sylvia’s Lounge, Corner Social, The 5 and Diamond, Harlem Tavern, Creole Restaurant and Music Supper Club, Harlem Food Bar, Les Ambassades Bar & Restaurant, 67 Orange Street, Chocolat Restaurant Lounge, Bier International

Corner Social