Saturday, August 31, 2013

End of Summer

Photo © Valery Rizzo (iPhone 4S)

This weekend is the official end of summer so I am trying to make the most of my garden as things begin to wilt and die off. I still have some peppers coming, loads of heirloom tomatoes (the best year yet despite the first time spider mites), a few cucumbers still growing, basil just beginning and lots of herbs still there for the grabbing. I made my Collards four times this year, the last time adding bacon with my usual onions and garlic, so good, thanks to my neighbor Will, who is a chef and hangs out of his kitchen window and talks to me while I am gardening and he is smoking :) don't love the smoke, ah but what can you do. My string beans gave me a few nights of steamed string beans and potatoes with red onions. I also have to say thank you to my friend Rita and her daughter Zoe for helping my turn the soil and prep the garden and my aunt Kathi who drove to Brooklyn from Long Island to help me weed and left me in awe when the bottom of my garden looked as clean as my kitchen floor!

Now we have fall to look forward to.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Brooklyn Chocolate Makers / FRONT & MAIN

Last week I was thrilled to have west elm feature Eating Brooklyn and my photographs of Brooklyn chocolate makers on their cool blog FRONT & MAIN. The photos were featured in their COLOR CRUSH . INSPIRATION section and I don't know about you but I sure have a crush on that chocolate couch! see the full feature here.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Brooklyn Grange Farm at The Navy Yard

All images © Valery Rizzo

I was back from California and shooting at The Brooklyn Navy Yard again this week. I am surprised everyday that so many people don't know about The Brooklyn Navy Yard which is a large piece of Brooklyn's history. Yes most of it is not open to the public, but they have a Museum at Bldg 92 which houses a gallery and Ted and Honey's Cafe. I saw kids the other day from the museum's summer camp outside painting skate and surf boards, how cool is that. You can also sign up for a full navy yard tour with Turnstile tours.

Brooklyn Grange has the largest and one of the most beautiful rooftop farms within the Navy Yard, which I have had the pleasure of photographing through my residency at The Yard. They have many farm stands all over Brooklyn and Queens but if you would like a tour of the farm at The Navy Yard then visit their Wednesday stand until October 30th from 12 - 5 pm, Forecourt of Bldg 92, Flushing Avenue at Carlton, and they give farm tours every hour on the hour until 4pm.

Also you should check out Anastasia's Fridge, Grange co-founder Anastasia Cole Plakias shares recipes using the Grange's farm fresh produce.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

La Balena

All images © Valery Rizzo

I recently traveled to California to photograph a friend's beautiful restaurant La Balena located in Carmel by the Sea. I love the concept of a Farm to Table, Tuscan Restaurant which sources local ingredients and serves handcrafted pasta. This is just a sneak peak and while it is not about Brooklyn, I am thinking about creating a big post with the restaurant shoot and convincing owners Anna and Emanuele Bartolini and Chef Brad Briske to share their Panzanella recipe with us in which I could source all the ingredients locally in Brooklyn and make use of all the wonderful tomatoes being harvested now. Stay tuned :)