Christine Assouad Sfeir and Carine Assouad are launching next year Semsom’s first outlet in New York City at 2 Astor Pl. This is their first venture in the US and will consist of a 1,256 square-foot space that will seat around 25 people. The plan is to open four more outlets in New York in 2015 and have around 200 locations across the US by 2020. This is a very ambitious plan but Christine is ranked No.19 on the Forbes list of the 200 most powerful business women in the Arab world for a good reason.
Semsom is open in Lebanon, KSA and Kuwait. I’ve been to Semsom few times and liked the food but that was a while ago. In fact I just realized I haven’t been to a Lebanese restaurant in a long while for some reason.
Check out the full NYPost article [Here].
Maissa Abou Adal Ghanem & Ghia Khayat Hawari launched a month ago the second edition of “Recettes de vie”, a cook book with more 200 delicious recipes collected from chefs all over the world, and that reveals culinary secrets that have been passed down from generation to generation. I was at the event and got to meet both authors who are very passionate about their book and this unique culinary experience they are offering their readers. Moreover and this is the most important part, all proceeds from Recettes de Vie 2 are distributed to non-political and non-religious organizations that defend the rights of women and children.
I personally loved the book, and so did my wife. There are so many great recipes that I am eager to try out or taste since I don’t really know how to cook.
Recettes de vie 2 was launched in Dubai, London and Paris lately. If you are interested in buying the book, check out their [website].
You must try the Parmesan Truffle Fries next time you visit Brgrco. Brgrco opened in Chelsea on December 1.
As soon as I read that a center called Taanayel got closed down by the Health Ministry, I had the curiosity to go in and verify which Taanayel they are talking about because the only Taanayel I know is Taanayel Les Fermes whose products I trust and consume all the time (Specially the Laban). Needless to say, it turned out to be another Taanayel but rumors (as usual) started spreading about Taanayel Les Fermes and they were forced to kick off an online marketing campaign to clear out their name and state that they fully support the Ministry of Health who is safeguarding the consumer and upholding industry and health standards.
We can’t really blame Health Minister Bou Faour for this confusion, as Lebanese are supposed to verify everything they are reading, but as I’ve stated previously, I think Bou Faour should stay away from press conferences and flashing popular restaurant names and hot brands because the information might get misinterpreted like the Taanayel case and cause considerable financial losses to the brand. In my opinion, the best thing to do is keep everything confidential until the ministry is done inspecting all factories in the Bekaa area for example and then list all those who are compliant and not.
I hope this post will help clarify any confusion regarding Taanayel Les Fermes and spread further awareness on the food safety campaign.
Spotted at Charcutier Aoun.
It was Saint Barbara yesterday in Lebanon and I always look forward to this day for two things:
– The Atayef (قطايف) that my mum prepares.
– Other Barbara sweets like the Macaron and Ouwaymet and wheat.
If you are interested in doing Maakaron yourself, check out MarmiteetPonpon’s recipe and TasteofBeirut’s recipe. TasteofBeirut has also a nice recipe for Ashta Atayef.
Happy Barbara everyone!
I was on my way out from O&C supermarket yesterday when I spotted Secrets right next to it. I went in and asked them whether it’s the same cake shop from Koraytem and they confirmed it. Apparently they’ve been open for 2 weeks now. I’ve never been to Secrets Koraytem but I’ve tasted a lot of cakes that my friends used to bring for birthday or special occasions and they were really good.
I didn’t get cakes though yesterday but something even better. Marshmallows mixed with Nutella chocolate and nuts. I will share a picture of them later on my Instagram.
Minister Bou Faour having lunch with Dima Sadek
The Leadership Club at AUB is organizing an open panel discussion with Health Minister Wael Bou Faour and former Minister of Economy & Trace Nicolas Nahas. The topic at hand will be Lebanon’s recent food crisis, which is a very important session. Since I won’t be able to attend the session, I will post the questions here and if anyone can pick them up and address them to Minister Bou Faour then it would be great.
1- Why didn’t the ministry publish a full report listing all the restaurants and institutions violating the law and further information regarding the severity of these violations? What are the guidelines being followed to inspect restaurants?
2- What is the strategy being set by the Ministry to avoid such food scandals in the future? Will the corrupt ministry workers and previous ministers be held accountable for their negligence?
3- Why isn’t the Ministry on Facebook and engaging with Lebanese on social media channels?
As I said before, I am fully supportive of the minister’s initiative but he needs to provide numbers and scientific proof and cut down on the press releases and media stunts.
I’d love to talk about the politics of Machrou7a with this guy.
I never doubted food safety at ABC restaurants but it’s good to hear that they are raising awareness on that matter and comforting people that they are LAFS certified. Meanwhile, Minister Bou Faour continues to unveil new violations and the latest was sealing with red wax Center Taanayel’s factory for expired products.