TAT TIME: When I first met Jimmy Tchinnis, he was cooking
at Bin 56, perfecting the small plate concept at which he
really excels. Asking about his kitchen credentials, I learned
he was founding chef at the original Bistro 44 in Northport.
With dreams of partnership and the optimism of youth, hed
had Bistro 44s logo tattooed on his arm. I asked him
then if hed yet gotten the Bin 56 logo etched into his
skin. Not until Im an owner, he answered.
Fast forward to winter 2011. A few months earlier Tchinnis
had opened his own place, Swallow (366 New York Ave., Huntington,
631-547-6388 www.swallowrestaurant.com) where he practices
his small plate magic from a windowfront grill. This Foodie
is a fan, and after my third or fourth visit, I said to Jimmy,
I think you can get that tattoo now. He took it
as the compliment it was intended to be. And not that Im
taking credit, but on my last visit to Swallow, Tchinnis beamed
as he made a fist and held it under the light. Across the
top of his hand is now inked the Swallow from his restaurant
logo. And I agree.
PRACTICE SAFE GRILLING: Its barbeque season, but before
you fire up the grill and char the first steak of summer,
the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) wants us to
remind you to practice safe grilling. Gas grills, they say,
are involved in 6,200 home fires each year, with charcoal
or other solid-fueled grills accounting for another 1,300.
NFPA offers the following tips that will have you practicing
safe grilling: only use propane and charcoal grills outside
of the home never indoors; position the grill well
away from the home and/or deck railings, and not underneath
eaves or overhanging branches; keep a 3-foot child- and pet-free
zone around the grill; use long-handled grilling tools; and
clean grease and fat from drip pans and traps regularly. For
more safety tips go to www.nfpa.org/grilling.
OH, OLIVE OIL: Olive oil fans, rejoice. Bob and Mona Rossero
have opened Crushed Olive (278 Main St., Huntington, 631-423-1500,
thecrushedolive.com), an intriguing concept store devoted
solely to olive oils and infused vinegars. Open as of Friday,
Crushed Olive has on display several dozen metal casks filled
with flavor-infused olive oils and vinegars. Shoppers are
welcome to grab a stack of teeny tiny tasting cups or chunks
of bread and start sampling. There are top-quality oils from
Sicily, Portugal, Spain, Greece, California, Tunisia and Australia.
But the fun begins with the flavor-infused oils Tuscan
herb, Eureka Lemon, Roasted Walnut, Basil
the list goes
on and on. The same goes for balsamic vinegars. Flavors include
black cherry, ripe peach, lavender, pomegranate, even espresso
(which well try on some ice cream). Try em, find
one you like, and theyll fill and cork it on the spot.
Prices start at $16.99 for a 12-1/2 oz. bottle and top at
$34.99 for a white truffle oil-infused olive oil. Stop in,
and tell the Rosseros the Foodies sent you.
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