Avelino Pizza at Macari Vineyards

 

meeddypizza

Me with Cousin Eddie, Tommy, and Joe

 

AVELINO PIZZA at MACARI VINETARDS
Left to Right :  Author Daniel Bellino-Zwicke  , Pizzaiolo Edward Macari
Thomas Macari and President of Macari Vineyards Joseph Macari Jr.
Read about AVELINO PIZZA
At a PIZZA
.

 

Advertisements

I Learn How to Cook Italian

 

johnskitchen

John at JOHN’S of 12th Street

 

Best Selling Italian Cookbook Author Daniel Bellino Zwicke has quite a strong connection to DeRobertis, Lanza’s, and especially John’s of East 12th Street where Daniel worked as a waiter / bartender for 7 years in the 1980s .. Daniel lived just a few blocks away from the infamous Mafia Hot Spots / Italian Eateries … He lived on Avenue A at the corner of Saint Marks Place for 11 years from 1982 to 1994.

Daniel was a young man in his early 20s, working hard in the restaurant business. His main goals were two-fold, to become a Chef and to own his own restaurant one day ( Bar Cichetti  ). Prior to moving to the East Village of New York’s LES, Daniel attended New York Technical College in the schools Hotel Restaurant Management Program, with his main interest in the Culinary Classes which  were highly renowned. At the time, Daniel was actually more interested in learning and perfecting his talents in French Cuisine of the Culinary Arts and not of the Italian genre, which he would later move into. 

Daniel worked in some of New York’s op French Restaurants of the day, including; The Palace Restaurant with Chef Michel Fitoussi, Lutece with Chef Andre Soltner, and The Odeon and Cafe Louxenbourg with the late great Chef Patrick Clarke, who like Daniel went to New York Technical College as well.

At the time, working in the kitchens of these restaurants, a prep or line cook could only make about $300 a week, which was not enough for Daniel. Luckily he serendipitously made the acquaintance of Myron Weiner who was one of the two partners of the old red sauce joint John’s of 12th Street. They met while having Italian Ices at a Street Fair on University Place in 1981. Myron told Daniel he owned John’s, and Daniel asked if they were looking for any waiters as he was looking for some part-time employment. Daniel started working at John’s and the rest is history. He would cook 4 lunch shifts and one dinner shift a week, and work at John’s 3 nights a week, mostly waiting tables, and once a week tending bar. In those 3 nights, Daniel made more than 5 days work in the kitchen, and it afforded him the ability to pay all his bills; Rent, Food, Con Ed, Phone Bill, etc.. And because of John’s, Daniel had plenty of money to buy the nice clothes he liked, go out to eat in restaurants, and take a nice vacation to Paris or Italy every year. This suited Daniel fine. He waited tables and had a good time at John’s, meeting celebrities along with the funky East Village characters of the day. 

Daniel worked hard and played hard, chased the ladies and sewed some wild oats. Part of his socializing and enjoying life including, going out to eat at various restaurants, as well as a but of clubbin (Night Clubs), cafe and bar hopping. Two of Daniel’s favorite places for Cappucino and Italia pastries were a couple venerable old Italian Pastry Shops nearby in Veniero’s (Since 1892) and DeRobertis on Second Avenue, just about 100 feet from Veniero’s. Next to DeRoberti’s was Lanza’s an old school Italian Restaurant that was in operation since 1904 . There was a stretch of time in the early 90s when Daniel, his girlfriend Dante, and their friends John and Jorge would have lunch many a Saturday at Lanza’s before heading to work at Les Halles where they all worked at the time. They also loved going for Cappuccino and Cannoli or Sfogliatelle at DeRobertis all the time and sit in the back room with the old Subway Tiles and 1920 Silver Dollar imbedded into the tile floor. There was nothing better, and Daniel says it saddens him terribly that both Lanza’s and DeRobertis where he had countless good times, are now closed down. Daniel says, “It’s a Sin,” and it is. He also misses terribly his old friend Vinny’s place, La Focacceria, also on 1st Avenue as well as Brunetta on 1st Avenue, one block up from Lanza’s and DeRoberti’s on the block between East 11th and East 12th Street. The first location of La Focacceria was on this block as well, but they moved to First Avenue between East 7th Street and St Marks Place sometime in the early 80s . 

La Focacceria was were Daniel first learned of one of his ancestral Sicilian dishes called Vasteddi (Pane Muesa), along with real Sicilian Pizza known as Sfingione. Both dishes along with Aracini (Rice Balls) are dishes of the Sicilian Capital City of Palermo where, along with Lercara Friddi are where Daniel’s maternal grandparents Giuseppina Salamei and Fillipo Bellino were born and immigrated from, to come to New York in 1904 ..

Not long after Daniel moved to the East Village neighborhood of athe East Village that was not now, but once-upo-a-time a Sicilian-American stronghold neighborhood. By this time in the 1980s the East Village had a strong Ukranian and Eastern European contingency, but remnants of the old Sicilian Neighborhood remained in the form of John’s of East 12th Street, Lanza’s, La Focacceria and Brunetta’s, the DeRoberti’s were from Puglia in Southern Italy.

So Daniel had a good time, and learned a thing or two along the way. After going to Italy for the first time in 1985, and falling head over heals in love with Italy and Italian Culture (his own) Daniel decided he wanted not to continue his pursuit of the French Culinary Arts, but authentic Italian Cuisine instead. And thus he set out to start working in an Italian Kitchen to learn from and Italian Chef. Daniel got a job as a line cook at Caio Bella Restaurant and learned from Pasquale, a very talented Chef from Brindisi, Italy. Daniel worked at Caio Bella and learned how to make the “World’s Best Bolognese,” Pasta Fagioli, Risotto, Frittata, and all the great regional dishes of Italy. He also embellished his learning, by eating at Italian restaurant in New York, but more so in Italy on his yearly travels to his mother country. Daniel bought every good Italian Cookbook he could get his hands on, he read the books, cooked many dishes and would eventually start writing his own. This is how you learn, read, watch, gain experience and grow. The education of Daniel Bellino Zwicke.

 

 

.

DANIEL ‘S ITALIAN COOKBOOKS

 

 

 

 

.

.

 

 

 

 

Worlds Best Ragu Bolognese

BolognesePICIiiRECCIPE

PICI BOLOGNESE

And The WORLDS BEST EVER RAGU BOLOGNESE RECIPE

by DANNY BOLGONESE

aka Daniel Bellino Zwicke

RECIPE  in The RAGU BOLOGNESE COOKBOOK

 

It’s The #BestTHINGever !!!

.

BOLOGNESEraguBOOK

The RAGU BOLOGNESE COOKBOOK

And The WORLDS BEST BOLOGNESE SAUCE

by Danny Bolognese

BUY IT !

 

 

The Best Things in Life are Free … It’s a great old saying. A wonderful old song was evven written on the sbject. The song The BEST THINGS in LIFE are FREE starts out with the lines “The Moon Belongs to Everyone. The Best Things in Life are Free.” The song mentions “Flowers in Spring,” “Robins that Sing,” and “The Sunbeams that Shine.” They don’t mention Bolgonese Sauce, though they easily could, for it is without question, one the Best Things in life, and it certainly is one of “The Best Things Ever.” No doubt. And it can even be free, and if not free, and if you are making it, and paying for the ingredients to make it, it may not be free, but it’s dam near it, costing a measly .95 Cents to serve a portion of it. Bolognese the taste is so devine, almost orgasmic, “seriously, it is.” It’s that good. The taste of properly made Ragu Bolognese, dressing whatever pasta you choose; Spaghetti, Tagiatelle, Rigatoni, whatever, a proper made Ragu Bolognese is one of the most devine dishes imaginable. The great Marcell Hazan said of it, “There is no more perfect union in all Gastronomy than the marriage of Ragu Bolognese and homemade Bolognese tagliatelle.” Well I couldn’t agree more with Marcella, except that, though homemade tagliatelle is absolutely wonderful, it is not absolutely essential for the great dish of Pasta w/ Ragu Bolognese, they very most improtant element is that you have a perfectly made Ragu Bolognese, the thing that will give the dish 90% of its unmatchable sinfully luscious flavor. The Pasta and the grated Parmigiano Reggaino are great, but “it’s all about the Bolognese (Sauce).”

There are many great dishes in the World, and of many different international cuisines, but nothing quite like a well made “Ragu Bolognes,” trust me. I love a great Bouf Bourgonnone, Coq au Vin, Foe Gras, Vietnamese PHO, lush American BBQ Ribs, the perfect Hamburger, a juicy Prime New York CUt Sirloin Steak, Tandoori Chicken, a NY Pastrami Sandwich, Belgian Chocolate, perfectly Roast Chicken, I could go on and on, I love these dishes and a couple hundred more, but there is no dish that I love more than a properly made Bolognese, and no Bolognese Sauce that is better than mine, “None,” not Marcella’s, not anywhere in Bologna, Italy, nor anywhere in all of Emelia Romagna the region it comes from. I know it may sound pompous and egotistical for me to brag about my Bolgonese as I do, and I know people would call me insane, for me to think that of all the great Italian Chefs all over Italy and especially in Emeia Romagan, that I would have the nerve to think that I make “The Worlds Best Bolognese,” but it’s TRUE, “I do!” I make without a doubt, the single Best Ragu Bolognese in the entire World. Yes it may sound absurd, but absurd it’s not. Just ask the some four or five-hundred people who’ve had it, they’ll all confirm the fact that the worlds single best tasting most perfect Bolognese Sauce is made by none other than Italian-American Italian-Cookbook Author (formerChef) Daniel Bellino Zwicke of Greenwich Village, New York.

I was taught the recipe of this the Worlds Greatest Bolognese when I was a cook at the now defunct Caio Bella Restaurant, up on Thrid Avenue at 75th Street in New York back in 1987 by Chef Pasquale, sorry I can’t remember his last name. Anyway, Chef Pasquale was from Brindisi Italy, a city in the South of Italy in the region of Puglia. Pasquale started working in kitchens in Brindisi where he first honed his craft. He later went on to work in kitchens in Milan, Bologna, Parma, London, and Tokyo, Japan before moving to New York and becoming the Head Chef at the restaurant Mezzaluna, the 1st restaurant to make and serve real Italian Pizza made in a wood-burning Pizza Oven in New York and in the United States. The restaurant was a big hit, and a couple of the waiters at the restaurant, a guy named Rocco and my ex-boss Enrico Proetti wanted to go out on their own and open their own restaurant, and so they did. They got togehter with a wealthy older Italian man “Fred” who became their partner and put up all the cash to open the restuarant up the street, called Caio Bella. Caio Bella was a big success, and a quick one at that, and it was soon one of the hottest restaurant of the day, back in 1987 when I went in looking for a job. I met Pasquale, we chatted, I told him about my background and my asperations with Italian Food. Pasquale hired me, and the rest is history. I had mostly worked in French Restaurants before that, and I’d gone to New York Technical College in Brooklyn where they taught Classical French Cusisine, which is the food I wanted to cook when I first got started. Yes I first wanted to cook French. But after I made my first trip to my ancestral home of Italy in the Summer of 1985, I caught the bug, and from then on, i wanted to cook authentic Italian Food. I soaked up and learn all I could of true Italian Food, made the Italian way, and I don’t mean Italian-American, but by Italians. So I decided I needed to get a job at a great Italian Restaurant in New York that had a great Italian Chef from Italy. I went to Sandro’s and Arqua first, and they both offered me jobs, but when I went up to Caio Bella and Chef Pasquale hired me as a line-cook, I decided to take the job at Caio Bella.

Pasquale was a great teacher, and he showed me personally how to make all the dishes on the menu, including his great recipe for Ragu Bolognese. I made it just the way Pasquale showed me how to make it, and from then on, I was the person at Caio Bella who always made the Ragu Bolognese. Pasquale liked the way I made it, exactly the way he showed me, and that was that. And I’ve always made my Bolognese just like that. No matter what others may tell you, every Bolognese is at least a little different from all others, and so was Pasquale’s which latter became mine, and ever since I’ve made it at Caio Bella in 1987, I’ve never tasted one quite like mine, which as you know by now, is “The Worlds Best Ragu Bolonese Ever.” No Brag, Just Fact as Walter Brennan used to say in his Cowboy TV Show back in the 60s.

In 1998 I finally acheived my dream of opening my own restaurant. I opened up what turned out to be the 1st Ever Venetian Wine Bar (Bacaro) in the United States of America in Bar Cichetti. I was the Chef / Wine Director and managing partner of Bar Cichetti. I received numerous accolades from the New York Times, Time Out Magazine, New York Magazine and other publications, including my favorite one of all, a 5 page spread about me and my restaurant Bar Cichetti, and my favvorite line of all from The Journal of Italian Food Wine & Travel Magazine which saide, “Daniel (Bellino Zwicke0 makes the Best Ragu Bolognese in America.” Yes they said that, I couldn’t agree with them more.

 

Thanks,

Daniel

 

 

 

 

 

THE BEST THINGS in LIFE are FREE

 

LYRICS

The moon belongs to everyone
The best things in life are free
The stars belong to everyone
They gleam there for you and me
The flowers in spring
The robins that sing
The sunbeams that shine
They’re yours, and they’re mine
love can come to everyone
The best things in life are free
The moon belongs to everyone
The best things in life are free
The stars belong to everyone
They gleam there for you and me
The flowers in spring
The robins that sing
The sunbeams that shine
They’re yours, and they’re mine
love can come to everyone
The best things in life are free
The moon belongs to everyone
The best things in life are free
The stars belong to everyone
They gleam there for you and me
The flowers in spring
The robins that sing
The sunbeams that shine
They’re yours, and they’re mine
love can come to everyone
The best things in life are free
ooh… Lord… Everything…
Every one of those good things
The best, best things in life are free…

 

#BestThingYouEverATE !!!

 

.

 

5 Star Review for The Feast of The 7 Fish From Book Goodies

 
 
 
ITALIAN CHRISTMAS
“Isn’t It Time you Learned How to Make It?”
THIS YEAR !!!
 
BOOK GOODIES LOVES
 
The FEAST of The 7 FISH
 
 
by Daniel Bellino Zwicke
 
“Thank You so much to Book Goodies for the Stellar Revview of The FEAST of THE 7 FISH. Much Apprecciated.”
“MERRY CHRISTMAS One and All” !!!
On AMAZON
.
.
.
.

 

 

 

.