In October BLOX NYC kick-started the Rocking The Bridge initiative which brought together business owners, community leaders, and residents for a massive overdue cleanup of the Third Ave Bridge in The Bronx. The event was followed by a block party to celebrate everyone’s efforts. Blox is at it again, this time they are getting into the holiday spirit.

Starting in December the popular Bronx neighborhood of Mott Haven will be the site of the Regalos NYC Holiday Market. The first ever festive shopping experience will give shoppers the opportunity to purchase all sorts of goods from over two dozen vendors. Retail from local and global brands, foods, and drinks from local breweries and distilleries will be available for purchase. Still, about a month away more details will come out soon.

This festive celebration of the community is all about showing off how far the South Bronx has come. It is essential to recognize the people and businesses that continue to shed the negative stigma of the South Bronx. Mott Haven is the starting point of this movement.



JCAL Development Group has been a significant player in the revitalization of Mott Haven. Their 5 properties in the growing neighborhood has attracted young professionals, both from The Bronx and the other boroughs to Mott Haven and their commercial space has brought new and attractive retail and eateries as well. I took a tour of JCAL’s recently opened 20,000 square foot building at 131-135 Alexander Ave, and I was impressed. The four-story building designed by Praxis Workshop is located between 134th street and Bruckner Blvd. The block is already a Bronx hotspot thanks to the upscale Pizzeria La Grata, FAMOUS NOBODYS, an independent clothing brand, and hip sushi spot Ceetay.



As I entered the building, I noticed some artwork in the stairway. Local artist Charlie Pratt was tasked with decorating the walls so the building won’t have the typical bland, white hallways we are accustomed to. Inside one of the 2nd-floor studio apartments, I noticed the loft-like windows and 15 foot high ceilings. Each apartment has hardwood floors and LED lighting. There is also a washer and dryer in each unit. A steel flight of stairs will take you up to a mezzanine area where you can put your bed. It’s a genius way to save space. The kitchen includes stainless steel appliances, and quartz countertops and the bathrooms are tiled and cozy. Most of the apartments have a large patio space that is equivalent to what you would find in a small house, extremely generous for an apartment in New York City. The tenants that don’t have access to a private patio can use the communal terrace on the rooftop.


On the ground floor of 131-135 Alexander Ave are three retail spaces. A dynamic combination of the Bronx’s worst kept secret Beatstro, a hip-hop themed restaurant will open sometime next year, and The Lit Bar is moving into 131-A Alexander. The remaining space at 131-B Alexander is 1600 square feet and is available for rent. Offering studios to 2 bedroom apartments make it obvious these dwellings aren’t for families, and that is okay. Recent college graduates and young professionals need homes too, and apartments like these are a perfect fit for them. The number of single, non-married individuals looking to rent has increased, not everyone wants a roommate. There is no doubt Mott Haven, a transit-rich neighborhood with an up and coming nightlife scene will be in the sights of young professionals, and JCAL’s developments are ready for them.


If you want to visit, Alexander Ave takes the six train to 138th street and Third Ave. Contact JCAL Development if you wish to see the apartments and retail space. 


Josh weissman, JCAL DEVELOPMENT from Round Seven on Vimeo.

People Dancing Under The Bridge


We deserve better became more than an Instagram hashtag after Rocking The Bridge. The phrase quickly became a powerful message declared by South Bronx residents standing up to stake a claim in the equity of their communitydriven by Rocking The Bridge organized by Blox NYC and the Third Avenue BID in the Mott Haven/Port Morris section of the South Bronx.

The two bridge cleanups took place under (and on) the Third Avenue Bridge, both occurring in October. The first on Saturday, October 7th and the second on Saturday, October 21st. The bridge overpass was swept and cleaned of garbage and drug paraphernalia, carefully disposed of using the proper protocol. Under the bridge on the Bronx side, volunteers spent the day picking up trash as well as painting and power washing the underpass.

The Third Avenue Bridge is used daily, in high volumes, by New Yorkers of all ages, often by children making their way to and from school in neighboring Harlem. Local commuters favorably received all the improvements.

On Sunday, October 22nd to celebrate the clean bridge initiative, the community came together for the Rocking The Bridge block party. A celebration organized by Blox NYC, The Third Avenue BID, Edible Bronx Magazine and Dancing In The Streets. The event was both a local food festival and community outreach opportunity. Offering programs to combat drug abuse, homelessness, and programming that promoted safe sex and Narcan, an over-the-counter drug that can temporarily block opioids from entering the bloodstream used by civilian bystanders in the case of an overdose. St Ann's Harm Reduction program provided information on Narcan, as well as their needle exchange program, which launched in 1990, to effectively reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS among South Bronx intervenous drug users.

Local restaurants extended their dining room reach to under the Third Avenue Bridge, creating pop-up restaurants in 6x6 lots, selling their respective specialty food items, each for $5 or less. Participating restaurants included neighborhood favorites Mott Haven Bar & Grill, Ceetay, Habanero, Charlie’s Bar & Kitchen and City Tamale from nearby Hunts Point. With flavors ranging from New American, innovative Mexican, International Gastropub and Asian Fusion,  each offering showcased the diversity and quality of the burgeoning South Bronx restaurant scene.

Local food entrepreneurs included Sol Cacao, Born Juice, Red Hibiscus Bakery, and Check Mate Sweets—each selling locally handcrafted food items. Chef-entrepreneur Jason Alicea, the founder of Empanaology, wowed the crowd with a unique spin on a Latin-American classic, empanadas, serving six out of the box flavors including Truffle Mac and Cheese, Cubano and Red Velvet Tres Leches. 

Event goers enjoyed a DJ spinning Hip Hop and R&B classics as well as top 40 hits, live music and dance performances organized by Dancing in The Street. Various fitness activities and exercise equipment were available under the bridge promoting overall health and wellness. A food canning demonstration provided by The South Bronx Farmers Market, Mott Haven's local farmers market, prompting a discussion on healthy farm-to-table eating all year long.

With an impressive turn out from both sides of the Third Avenue Bridge, the community came together—dancing, eating and drinking for the cause.

For Rocking The Bridge, this is only the beginning of a movement, much larger than one bridge. According to Blox NYC founder and event organizer Marco Shalma, this "is the first cleanup of five bridges in the South Bronx," each connects the Bronx to Manhattan, Shalma notes “all of them are in bad condition and need love and care.” Every bridge is used by residents regularly but is rarely cared for by New York City's Department of Transporation (DOT) responsible for all road and bridge maintenance.

Third Avenue BID director and event co-organizer Michael Brady is hopeful that the cleanup and the Rocking The Bridge event will effectively “bring the conversation of equity to the South Bronx.”

With a powerful message and proactive community behind the Rocking The Bride movement, it is undoubtedly the beginning of positive change and dialogue for South Bronx residents.


Halloween 2017 is on a Monday, but the South Bronx is hosting some bashes this weekend. Here are the top parties you should attend!

The Mott Haven Bar & Grill 

When: Thursday, October 26th 7:30 pm. Sip wine and paint while in costume, win a grand prize!

How to get there: 1 Bruckner Blvd. Take the 6 train to 138th Street Third Ave, 4 or 5 trains to 138th Street Grand Concourse.

The Bronx Brewery

When: Friday October 27th, 8:00pm-12:00am. The Bronx Brewery is hosting their first ever costume party. Treats not tricks will be served by Sol Cacao and Carlito's Trailer Tacos. Music by DJ Yoo Q.

How to get there: 856 136th Street. 6 train to Cypress Ave.

Port Morris Distillery

When: Saturday, October 28th, 10:00 pm till whenever! Port Morris Distillery has some fantastic decorations in the works, don't forget your costumes!

How to get there: 780 E. 133rd Street. 6 train to Cypress Ave.

SouthBox Gym

When: Saturday, October 28th, 4:00pm-10:00 pm The Bronx's hottest boxing gym is hosting its first Halloween party with a DJ, raffles, food, and drinks. The best costume wins a 1-year membership!

How to get there: 2407-13 Third Ave. Take the 6 train to 138th Street and Third Ave, 4 or 5 trains to 138th Street and Grand Concourse.

The Bronx Draft House

When: Saturday, October 28th, 8:00 pm till closing. The BX Draft House will give out prizes for best costume, scariest costume, and best couple costume, plus raffles and prizes!

How to get there: 884 Gerard Ave. B, or D train to River Ave, 4 trains to 161st Street Yankee Stadium.

Charlie's Bar & Kitchen

When: Saturday, October 28th 8:00 pm till late. Charlie's is throwing a Halloween bash with a costume contest, DJ, and drink specials. Music by DJ Menyu.

How to get there: 112 Lincoln Ave. Take the 6 train to 138th Street Third Ave. 4 or 5 trains to 138th Street and Grand Concourse.

Bronx Borough President's Office 3rd Annual Halloween Costume Bash

When: Monday, October 30th. 7:00pm-9:00pm. RSVP at 718-731-2009 or Costumes are preferred but not required.

How to get there: Pier 132 at 789 E. 132nd Street. 6 train to Cypress Ave.

Use #BXHalloween17


Food is the centerpiece of all celebrations and often the most memorable part of any occasion. On October 22nd, the South Bronx community is gathering under the newly cleaned Third Avenue Bridge for a rocking good time—full of good eats.

It wouldn’t be a neighborhood block party without the neighbors and lucky for us, our neighbors happen to be culinary masterminds bringing all the good stuff to the party. Mott Haven on The Go, owned by Rosa Garcia whose flagship restaurant is only a stone’s throw away from the event is pulling up under the bridge to serve up comfort food with a healthy twist. Also, providing the ‘nabe with some seriously good noms are nearby restaurants La Grata, Charlie's Bar & Kitchen and Ceetay. Slinging out their Sunday finest, serving authentic Italian, classic America and Pan-Asian respectively. The diversity of participating vendors is a nod to the diversity and adventurous palates of the Bronx.

(R to L) Pizza from La Grata, Charlie's Chicken Wings, Spring Rolls from Ceetay


Mott Haven’s newest restaurant Habanero is pulling out all the stops with four flavors of freshly made tacos, Tostadas, and Ceviche. The highly anticipated cold-press juice bar Born will be supplying us with our daily dose of vitamins by way of inventive fruit and veggie juice blend concoctions—activated charcoal never tasted so good—alchemy at its finest.


Tostadas from Habanero
Tostadas from Habanero


Unique Latin flare won’t be in shortage at the event, Jason Alicea creator and owner of Empanology will be selling a seasonal lineup of empanadas, spoiler: these are not your Grandma’s empanadas—were looking at flavors like The Cubano, Chocolate Chip Cookie, and Truffle Mac N Cheese. City Tamale keeps their menu for the event more traditional, with signature classic tamales aka Mexican food for the soul.

Truffle Mac Empanadas

But the deliciousness doesn’t stop there, South Bronx Farmers Market will be Rocking the Bridge with a sweet vendor, Red Hibiscus Bakery selling Pumpkin Soup, perfect for a late October day and mini fruit pies.

With over ten confirmed food vendors serving everything from sweet to savory, Rocking The Bridge block party will definitely be rocking your palate.


DrafthouseWhat are the two things that The Bronx & Paris have in common? Being notoriously known for a variety of exceptional foods and inspiring art. This Wednesday, the worlds will collide at The Bronx Drafthouse, a local bar/restaurant located up the block from Yankee Stadium, known for its craft beer, burgers, and delicious sides. The drafthouse will be hosting a meet and greet with the international photographer, Matteo Pellegrinuzzi and feature his "The Bronx/ La Villette" exhibit.




MatteoMatteo is a Paris-based still photographer whose work has been featured throughout France and Italy, alike. In his newest exhibit, he created a series of photos featuring local people from both The Bronx and La Vilette in Paris. The images give a glimpse into the contrast of cultures, traditions, and histories of the world-renowned locations.

The exhibit opens on Wednesday, September 6th, at 5 pm and will offer a unique menu that represents both of the photographed locations:

The Bronx: Bronx Burger & French Fries + Bronx Based Draft Beer $14.95 pp + Tax

Paris: Croque Monsieur & French Fries + Bronx Based Draft Beer $14.95 pp + Tax


Stop by The Bronx Drafthouse for an evening of art, food, beer and cultural fusion.

The Bronx Draft HouseMatteo Pellagrinuzzi


Before you roll your eyes... I'm, like, the OG (original glutard). Ten years ago, after a semester in Ireland where I sustained on bread, breaded fish and Guinness, i.e., liquid bread, I experienced a string of health problems; weight gain, acne, chronic cold and lethargy, leading to a few more serious visits to the ER because my immune system was shot. This was well before the time when everyone decided to go g-free as an excuse to eat nothing, or everything processed as long as it had the trusty GF stamp making it "healthier." But I happened to land myself a roommate who had been diagnosed with Celiacs, which back then was a word that was 'Huh?' inducing.   After many a slip-up inviting him to pizza or offering him a beer, I slowly gained a better understanding of what exactly gluten was and how it could reek havoc on a body that doesn't process it properly. As karma would have it, a few months later my digestive system was so defenseless against a stomach virus that I faced a life-threatening case of dehydration, followed by two months of not being able to digest solid food. I lost thirty pounds, and not in a good way.

So when my naturopath suggested I may be gluten intolerant, I was willing to do anything not to continue eating like a baby or a person with no teeth. I embarked on an elimination diet to determine the culprits, and the results were loud and clear; it was time to say 'Bye Felicia' to that stubborn little protein found in wheat (wheatberries, durum, emmer, semolina, spelt, farina, farro, Graham, KAMUT® Khorasan wheat and einkorn), rye, barley and triticale (a cross between wheat and rye).


Gluten Free Baking Epic Fail

Easier said than done. Remember, this was before folks were going gluten free as a lifestyle choice, and it wasn't common practice for doctors to test people with early onset arthritis, severe eczema or depression for a food allergy. Going gluten-free required a lot of research, a lot of label-reading, a lot of feeling like an outcast in social settings and a lot of crying over failed baking experiments. The only gluten-free flour blend I could find in the health food store was bean-based, which didn't make for very tasty sweets. Luckily, I like to cook, and I'm stubborn. I started buying different varieties of grain and nut flours in bulk, and my kitchen turned into a chemistry experiment that I was determined to crack.

I look back on that time now and chuckle. Like anything, with time my way of eating became second nature. Also, as gluten-freedom entered the mainstream conversation, the options became better and more accessible. But because I couldn't rely on dummy-proof packaging or labels, I became an expert on how to look for gluten in disguise and, more importantly, how to embrace all of the foods I can eat and create f#@%ing awesome alternatives to fill in the gaps... even after moving to the food desert that is the Bronx.



Here are my top 5 hacks for feeding your hangry gluten-free a$$, while avoiding being told to go back to Whole Foods in Manhattan where you came from! *Disclaimer, these will not be sufficient for people like my friend Maria who breaks out in a rash if she smells gluten.

1: Comida Mexicana Ere Tu Mejor Amiga

glutenOne word: Maiz. If you don't know what that is, I'll be the first to tell you, 'Go back to Whole Foods in Manhattan where you came from!' or start using Google translate stat. Masa, tamales, elotes are all corn-based, delicious and easy to come by in the Bronx. If I'm not making tamales at home from ingredients purchased at my local Pioneer, I get them from the cart right in the middle of 138th between Willis and Alexander.

If you want to experience the tacos dreams are made of, pay the extra $0.75 for the handmade tortillas at Mexicosina. And, if you're like me and you prefer a heaping side of social activism with your gorditas, patron the family-run La Morada.

Tips for g-free newbies and super-gringas: tortillas de harina are the ones to avoid, mole- while super delicious- is almost always thickened with wheat, and "sin pan por favor" means without bread, please.


2: Extra Lettuce, Hold the Bun!

Or, in the case of Mott Haven Bar and Grill, the English muffin. I like my burger medium rare with ketchup, mustard, pickles, onions, jalapeños... Or if I'm really on a protein bender, the El Barrio from Milkburger or the 454 from Charlie's Bar and Kitchen. However or wherever you like it, the only mistake you can make is missing out on the meat juice running down your hands like a normal person with an undeniable craving. So grab an extra piece of lettuce pick that $h!t up and commit. You won't regret it, and that's what napkins are for. And showers, maybe.... just saying, sometimes you have to do what it takes.



3: B.Y.O.T (Bring Your Own Tamari) 

One of the most annoying things that contain wheat for no reason whatsoever, except that it serves as a cheap filler is soy sauce. But if you're like me, you love sushi, and it's just not the same if you can't swirl your wasabi around in a salty puddle. Exactly why I've been known to carry a bottle of tamari in my purse. Ta-whaty? Tamari is fermented soy, aka, more expensive, wheat free soy sauce. Also available in individual packets from Amazon, if you want to be more discrete. So drop by Ceetay, order some gluten-free sake and get your sushi on. They even have spicy mayo if you're feeling extra saucy.


4: Mofongo, Tostones, Maduros... Oh, My!

Did you ever know there were so many delicious ways to eat fried plantains? Your Puerto Rican, Dominican and Cuban neighbors did and, while they'll probably all fight over who does it better, there's only one way to find out... Try them all.  Whether you're gluten-free or not, tostones- twice fried green plantains- dipped in a runny egg yolk are the absolute best cure for a hangover you can find.

And SNL Big Papi jokes aside, get your mofongo con bistec or anything really because in this case, the side is the star. If you're less weary of cross-contamination on the gluten-intolerant spectrum, take a cue from the Hungry Dominican and hit up 188 Bakery Cuchifritos for authenticity, or for a brilliant g-free innovation try the To' Chimi Sliders at Travesias, prepared on a tostones "bun."


5: The Italian Job

Boy or Girl? Pizza!Italy is usually one of the scarier regions to suggest to a glutard because our minds immediately think pizza, pasta, gluten baby (it's a real thing).But if you trust them to be careful about cross-contamination, most Italian restaurants have more to offer than everybody's go-to gluten bombs. La Grata, for instance, has chicken, fish and steak entree's that are delicious and gluten-free friendly, as well as stellar salads - they don't even put croutons in their Caesar. Winning!

Basically Hangry at La Grata


But if you do want pizza pizza and you don't want to settle for a sad piece of cardboard smothered in a disguise of toppings, the answer is a short journey over the river.  After ten years of searching and nearly resigning myself to the fact that I would always be longing for something that could truly be called pizza, I found Sottocasa in Harlem. It is run by an Italian couple who treats patrons with the care of guests coming to their own home. They serve regular pizza as well, but clean all surfaces and tools between preparations and they import a special gluten-free flour from Italy, which they use to make a crust that is chewy, bubbly and, well.... normal. It's so good, it's brought gluten-freaks to tears and my half-Italian fiancee to share a pizza with me. So if you don't trust me, ask him.


South Bronx Farmers Market

Obviously, it goes without saying that hitting up your local grocer or Farmer's Market and eating-in is the safest and arguably healthiest and cheapest way to go gluten-free in the Bronx. Edible Bronx magazine includes some fantastic recipes if you like to keep it local, and I also highly recommend the Gluten Free Gourmet cookbook and Gluten Free Goddess blog. And if options or scarce or you just have a junk food craving, watch my bodega run while snacking on Cheetos (they may also be food-free, but we all have our weaknesses).





Disclaimer: I do not condone being in a situation that requires you to follow the advice of this blurb. And I hope that you will always do the right thing in the case, god forbid, you find yourself in this scenario.


NYC, the Big Apple, is known for many things, compassion isn’t one of them. Mind your damn business is big on that list. Some of Gotham’s Do’s & Don'ts: avoiding eye contact on the subway and streets, continuing to walk no matter what’s going on around you, and never engaging with people doing crazy shit in public, i.e., urinating, soliciting Jesus, talking to themselves or worse, multiple selves.


But compassion is one thing, and hiding a dead body is another; while researching the subject, I found that the primary and obvious qualification for this shady list is that the location should be very isolated or extremely public.


So, while not perfect, here are my top places I’d hide a body if I had too:


  • Lincoln Plaza Cinema - Mostly known for its golden age, mostly Jewish patrons, and the only place in town serving homemade carrot cake and bagels with lox and cream cheese in its concession stand. The theatre also employs the oldest ushers and security guards in the business. You can 'Weekend at Bernie's' it, and no one will notice for a good few days, giving you a chance to get that plastic surgery, buy speedos and permanently move to Aruba.



  • Chinatown - Let's be honest you can pretty much dump anything there- especially your dignity- and it will go unnoticed for weeks. But, since you're down there, going full incognito with brand new Guchi sunglasses, Sefora makeup, Nu Era hat, a Roll-x watch, Supreem box logo tee, and Djordan sneakers that won't break the bank. And, you're just a few minutes away from the Drunken Dumpling- because nothing makes "I fucked up, and I will carry that guilt for the rest of my adult life" feel better than soup dumplings.



  • The L train - Ok, so this is a no brainer. I know. Even before mentioning the inevitable 15 months planned shutdown we are all aware of, two ultimate facts make the L a perfect body-hiding haven: 1. It never runs on schedule - especially on weekends and 2. it's filled with people whose uninterested disposition is notorious for not giving a literal fuck about anything but whatever they care about this week. (unless it's a small thing in some remote area, that no one else knows or cares about and involves making their own butter).



  • A vegan restaurant in the Bronx - The Bronx is number 62 out of 62 counties in NYS with regard to health concerns; a distinct representation of its socio-economical status reflected via food choices and health education. Fried plantains and refried beans don't constitute as veggies, and iceberg lettuce is closer to toilet tissue then greens. There are approximately ten vegan places for a population of 1.5 million, serving tourists and gentrifiers while being yelled at by local bloggers. So leave that pale, rigid corpse seated, no one is gonna know the difference.



  • Staten Island body- We are talking about the entire Borough of Staten Island as a 'shit, what do I do with this body - I think I am gonna dump it in Staten Island' situation. As far as we know, there is no better place to hide a body than right under the nose of a community of cops and gangster wannabes?!  But, if I had to choose one spot it would be a tough choice between these morbid God-forsaken shitholes: the New York City Farm Colony, The Tugboat Graveyard or The West Brighton Houses. Yikes.


So, there, this are my top 5 places (for now)  What other places can you think of? Let me know. Use #hideabodynyc

More in the series: The Knicks Trophy Cabinet, Every Council Member's Office, A bank in East NY



Zaro's Family Bakery. Photo: Zaro's

The Bronx was smiling yesterday morning as news broke out about the world-famous Bakery's return to The Bronx. Their new location will open at 1309 Metropolitan Oval, one store front down from their previous location which is now a Boston Market.

But the news doesn't stop with Zaro's Family Bakery's October surprise for the Bronx. They also announced an expansion of their Port Morris headquarters which will include a retail section. Beginning in the fall of 2018 customers will be able to buy pastries directly from the headquarters in a separate section dedicated to the public. Plans haven't been finalized, so whether or not it will be a full-service bakery remains to be seen. The entrance to their retail section will be along Bruckner Boulevard and open during normal business hours.

The headquarters is a popular site in the neighborhood. You can catch tourists taking pictures in front of the 1 story building's multi colored pattern. In 2014 the Zaros recruited Brooklyn artist R. Nick Kuszyk to decorate the building. It took less than a week and 200 cans of spray paint to complete the mural. Adding a retail section will only enhance its popularity and continue to solidify Port Morris as a major destination in the South Bronx. It is already home to popular local businesses Milk Burger, The Bronx Brewery Port Morris Distillery, the Gun Hill Tavern, and the Bronx Baking Company. In July The Bronx Pulse reported a new office building is currently under construction on 141st street. 


zaro's"We're excited to return to The Bronx to serve the community we love, " said Micheal Zaro. The Bronx is thrilled to have you back. Zaro's Family Bakery is located at 138 Bruckner Blvd. You can follow them at twitter @ZarosBakery and on Instagram @zarosfamilybakery



Charlie's Bar and Kitchen is having its world famous rooftop Seafood feast. What do you get when you mix the best cocktails in the city, with Shrimp, mussels, fish, clams, calamari, crab, potato salad, corn, and salads, while watching a gorgeous sunset off of one of the best views imaginable from the top of The Clock Tower?

EPIC FEAST would be my choice of words.



The good people of Charlie's Bar & Kitchen know how to do things right. We're already big fans of Monday night $.50 chicken wings, and Taco Tuesday (wait, it's Tuesday today) not to mention their no bullshit brunch and the monthly event in which we get to listen to our good pal - DJ Menyu concoct his magical playlists for us.

Join us this Saturday, August 26 from 6-9 PM. Limited Tickets are available online and in the restaurant and include access to the roof, the food, and your first drink! Hurry up!  Call (718) 684-2338 or email for details.




Orchard Beachbeach was once considered "The Riviera of New York City." Over the last few decades,  it's been known more for its trash, unpleasant smell, and dirty water than it is the only beach in The Bronx. Over the last few years, that perspective is changing again, however. That can be credited to  J. Lo's famous return to the Bronx in 2014, where she performed on the beach and brought out Fat Joe & Ja Rule and to the Borough President's office hard work of producing more family-friendly events, such as the Summer Music 2017 event and the Bronx Concert Summer Series.


BeachBut is it enough to change the minds of people who vowed they would never step foot there? No, that's what heroes are for. That's why we called our favorite hero, Richard Washington (aka HQ)  to throw his suit back on and take his unknown powers down to the beach and speed up the clean-up process. We were all surprised when he found the new special power of... SALSA!









Habanero Mexican Cuisine is the newest restaurant to join the booming culinary scene in Mott Haven. The family owned business began serving customers earlier this summer. They chose the South Bronx because of its new vibe and a love for the neighborhood. They also own another business nearby. When the opportunity presented itself they took advantage. "We dealt with the landlord directly. Let's just say it was destiny," said Victor Calixto, one of the owners.


Photos courtesy of @habanero_nyc

The menu was created by Chef Daniel who added a modern twist to original Mexican dishes. Their extensive menu also includes options for the health conscious such as salads, fajitas, and more elaborate dishes that have vegetables.


Photo courtesy of @habanero_nyc

It's almost hard to believe the sudden but positive transformation of Mott Haven. What used to be a neighborhood littered with rinky-dink small businesses, bullet proofed fast food joints, countless 24-hour delis and bodegas now has a range of more respectable options where residents and visitors can eat and drink. Habanero now joins Mott Haven Bar & GrillCeetay, and The Bronx Baking Company as some of the more exciting and popular businesses in Mott Haven. These establishments have brought positive attention to the South Bronx. The New York Times listed The South Bronx in its 52 places to visit and Anthony Bourdain recently stopped by for an art and booze crawl.

Victor Calixto is excited about the family's new business and he has a message for the South Bronx. "We invite you to come taste our food. It truly is a fusion of tradition with modern twists. Making sure our customers have a great experience coming to our restaurant is our most important priority. There are no short cuts here, we take pride in all of our dishes and are excited for you to come try a new culinary experience."

Habanero Mexican Cuisine is located at 141 Lincoln Ave. If you're not from the neighborhood take the 4 or 5 trains to 138th Street Grand Concourse or the 6 train to 138th Third Ave. They are open from 8:00 am to 10:30 pm Monday-Saturday and 10:00 am to 10:00 pm on Sunday. Follow them on Instagram @habanero_nyc.




Alexis Faraci, the owner of the Bronx Baking Co., is passionate about creating high-quality authentic Bavarian pretzels, right here in the Bronx. As a Mott Haven resident, she’s seen first-hand the ever-expanding craft beverage corner erupting in neighboring Port Morris.


Pretzels“If you’re going to have a high-quality beer you should serve something authentic with it—and beer and pretzels go together like peanut butter and jelly,” she says. Noting two reasons for that happy pairing: “It’s salt. There is something nice about pairing something hoppy with something salty. And it keeps you in your seat longer, it’s a good base coat for beer.”

The Swabian pretzel comes from the Bavarian region of southeast Germany, known for “its fat bottom and skinny arms” that allow for the pretzel to be equal parts crunchy and soft—perfect for tearing and sharing.

4 pretzels
Faraci says she fell into pretzel making as she followed the craft beer movement and noticed that the stateside pretzel game was severely lacking. Having spent a good amount of time in Bavaria, Germany, with friends who live abroad, Faraci appreciated the baking tradition.

“In Germany pretzels and pretzel bread are served with everything,” she says. “Germans eat pretzels the way New Yorkers eat bagels; it’s something that’s just everywhere.” As a newbie to baking and pretzel making, Faraci dove headfirst into the craft of hand rolled pretzels.

Now more than ever, the demand is growing. “We’re talking about the craft beer movement, people are putting a lot of energy and thought into brewing great beer,” she says. “Their customers really appreciate it and are becoming beer connoisseurs.” Currently, Bronx Baking Co. products can be found at beer halls and gardens in Brooklyn and Manhattan, as well as our Bronx-based beer hot spots: Gun Hill Brewery, The Bronx Brewery, and The Bronx Beer Hall.







Words by Amanda Celestino. Photos Courtesy of Alexis Faraci

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If you always wanted to take a vacation in France. Now, we have a Bronx version that is almost as good as the real thing. On an island that more closely resembles Martha’s Vineyard than the Bronx there is a treasure trove of nautically inspired eateries, lining City Island Avenue from stem to stern. Among them lies a pearl: Bistro SK, the Bronx’s only French restaurant.


Inside the charming bistro, you’re transported to France—and not because of the Eiffel Tower decked out with white lights sitting beside the front door. It’s the reclaimed hardwood floors throughout the intimate dining room, with personal touches like mismatched salt and pepper shakers, vintage French posters and antique dinnerware—all from the owner’s personal collection.



Other than a few nautical accents, the restaurant doesn’t subscribe to its Island surroundings, “I want to be different than the other restaurants here. It’s all seafood. Me, I want to be my own identity,” says owner Stephane Kane.  The menu is outfitted with French classics that highlight what bistro cuisine is meant to be—Escargot Persillade (snails baked in a puddle of garlicky herbaceous butter) and Steak Frites (unctuous grilled hanger steak aggressively seasoned with a side dish of crisp fried potatoes)—quick and casual, like the French equivalent of a diner, but oh so much better. The dishes, while simple and rustic, are rich with history, quality fresh ingredients and are thoughtfully prepared. So save on the air fare, and visit our local France. 


By Amanda Celestino. Photos by Daniel Kwak @FoodCre8ive

To read the full story about how Bistro Sk came to be, CLICK HERE


Erick Kelly has $10 and 90 seconds - GO!!!!!
What would you get?