2002-04-13 / Columnists

Dorothy Dunne

Did you all have a Happy Easter? Nicole Crowley celebrated her 16 birthday the night before on Mar. 30 with her mom and dad, Bobby and Patty Crowley at her grandma’s house where her Aunt Caryn and Uncle Joe,( master chef, "Emeril Lagasse"),.all enjoyed a pre-Easter delicious lamb dinner which I delightfully devoured along with the others. What a birthday present! Nicole flew the next morning, with her parents, to Florida for a short vacation. Now, that’s a nice gift. Mom, Patty Ritter Crowley, had something else to crow about her new little niece, Sabrena Helen McCarthy delivered by her sister, Sheila Ritter McCarthy. Husband and new Dad, Derek McCarthy was thrilled.

The next day, Easter Sunday, I joined Tom Connors to try out a brand new restaurant, Clemente’s Crabhouse, just off the Belt Parkway before you get to the Theatre near Knapp Street exit. Only, don’t go as far as the theatre. Make a sharp right turn as you drive off the parkway and there it is, right on the water. Well, were we surprised! In a bright sunny, cheerful setting with a wide, open view of the Gerristen Beach inlet, I was taken aback to see brown paper covering the tables. However, you do find wooden mallets sitting in a pot in their proper slots as the centerpiece. These mallets, as you have guessed by now, are used to hammer the hard shell crabs you order, ALL YOU CAN EAT, every day of the week. You needn’t come elegantly dressed. But do come clean and nicely casual. This inconspicuous hideaway jewel of crustacean cuisine is a gem indeed. It is attractive and comfortable with a full view of the water and has a dock where you can tie up your boat. There is an outdoor area to dine in the sunshine or evening glow. But, best of all, is the food. You must, you simply must try their beer battered oysters; they literally melt in your mouth. The crab cakes are just as sensational with a hint of spice, not hot enough to make you wince, but just enough to awaken your taste buds. Their special drink is a crabapple martini and that is so good! Do come there hungry. There is plenty to eat. For instance, their fixed price Easter Sunday menu ($14.95) offered seven courses: Soup, (a hearty, flavorful bean soup), salad, pasta with a mild sweet tomato sauce, (and we had, as a special, a sample their mouth watering oysters and crab cakes), sorbet to cleanse the palate (not a small scoop, but giant size). Tom chose the Leg of lamb with potato and vegetable for the entrée, which he thoroughly enjoyed. Salmon and grilled chicken were available also. Knowing my capacity was limited, I ordered the one and a half pound lobster, even though they showed me a three pounder and even suggested a six pound lobster. We owed this tasting treat to Master Chef, Billy Pirst from Brooklyn, a Culinary Institute graduate with the Waldorf Astoria, Russian Tea Room and the Plaza Hotel as part of his learning background. He also prepared a unique dessert….a delicious semi fredo frozie, (hand whipped mousse) and an apple cobbler. I told friendly and warm owners, Vinney Molinary, who ran Wells restaurant in Harlem in the early 90’s and Jazz Club, and Jimmy Muri, part owner of B3 (Ave. B and 3 Ave., NYC) who started Monday night, ALL YOU CAN EAT CRABS at that spot, "We couldn’t find a thing to complain about". It was just a wonderful dining experience. Even our cheerful waitress, Renata and Joey who provided some special services were so accommodating and pleasant. Next Sunday they open for Brunch and every day for ALL THE CRABS YOU CAN EAT. Try it yourself and tell me what you think about Clemente’s Crabhouse. I am sure you will be pleased.

At Studio "J" I was delighted to see our cheerful, bubbly, columnist, Dr. Geraldine M. Chapey Pasternak whose gleeful spirit is better than a glass of champagne. She told me her husband, Eugene is recovering nicely after his open heart surgery. Sorry to hear Eugene was ill, but happy to hear he is well on his way to recovery. Keep up the good work, Eugene. You have to get strong enough to take another vacation.

Gary Garafola, Studio "J" hair stylist, couldn’t wait to tell me about his grandson, Joseph Maracina who just graduated from the Police academy. He and his wife, Rose were at the graduation with their daughter, his mother, and all are so proud of him. Joseph has been assigned to a precinct in Bayside, Queens. And, gals, he is 6"4 , handsome with a sweet disposition and, available. Speak to Gary if you want to know more.

Kathy Pierce was thrilled when she called her grandson, Justin Waytowich on his cell phone and he answered from the Louvre in Paris. Justin, in his third year at Colgate University, was picked to go abroad and study at Oxford for six months. She said he is having a great time and travels throughout Europe when he gets time.

The Auto Show is in town. I attended the press preview days and the most outstanding shows were: Masaratti with the spectacular Olympic acrobatic performers who hung from the ceiling, somersaulted along the runway and jumped on iron pogo sticks. It was fantastic! And, they did all this to introduce their new 2003 Mazda Speed Protégée’, a turbocharged sport compact sedan in burnt orange that will sell for under 20,000. If you go to the show be sure to take a look at it. Jaguar held a big party to show off their smaller car and new SUV Road Runner. The Auto Show is at the Javits Center and is open till 10:30pm every evening, Monday through Friday and will be in New York until April 7. Go there and take a look at their concept cars, antique cars along with all the new models on display. Have fun!

Single gals, Juliette Fairley just wrote another book called, "Cash in the City." Affording Manolos, Martinis, and Manicures on a Working Girl’s Salary. It is an interesting, informative and how to guide to help single women achieve what they want (including a man) on a small budget.

If you love Chinese food and who doesn’t? Angela Chang teaches you how to prepared it at home with her new book, "The Intriguing World of Chinese Home Cooking". It is a well-illustrated book with food shots that make you salivate. All the instructions are easy to follow because it is written in English. It is available in bookstores anywhere but Rockaway since we don’t have one. Give me a call if you would like to get one.



Book Now Branson …(3) nts., Air/Hotel/Transfers/ Breakfast Daily and all Star Entertainment…..$699.99

Free Style 7 day Alaska from $849, Aug. 19 Norwegian Wind; 7 day, July 1 $1,199; HAL Cruisetour $1,799 Bermuda, 5 nts. at Sonesta Beach $664 Air/Land ; Harmony Club All inclusive, $716; .June 10 Amsterdam Alaskan Explorer OV $1,099, cabins limited; Zaandam May 25 CruiseTour OV $1,549, Verandha Ste. $1,849; Don’t like to dress? Live in resort casual on the Windstar Cruise where you have FREE Watersports, No Tipping, unique sailing experience on Master Sail Yachts all ocean view staterooms sailing to the Greek Isles, Med, New Zealand, Australia, Far East, Costa Rica and now Bahamas and soon, Tahiti. Many more amenities. If you go to Hong Kong and you have the bucks, by all means stay at the Inter Continental Hotel. It is fabulous with a gorgeous view of Hong Kong. It is ultra, ultra deluxe according to the video played for travel agents at the Conde Nast Bldg,

in Times Square. Travelspan has the lowest prices to Santo Domingo, Trinidad and Tobago and Cancun.

JFK NY to London till Jun 15 …$331; Brussels, $313; France, $525 midweek. Add $40 for weekends. Ireland 6 nts. B&B $699; Castle accommodations $799, 4 nts independent. Book by Apr. 30 Save $800 Greece, Athens and island cruise 9 days $1099; Helenic Classic from $1569 13 days Athens, Classical sights and 4 day cruise; Treasures of Turkey, 11 days $1429. AVOID ISRAEL according to State Deprtment. (As if we have to be told that).

More travel specials Mon. to Fri. on UHF Chs. 26/35&39, e-mail dorothydunne@yahoo.com.


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