Our 2011 Best Restaurants list: Volunteering and NGO

This is the time of the year when all the bloggers, magazines, TV shows… talk about the BEST of 2011. The best tracks, the best photographs, the best sport moments, the best new restaurants ( Sifton recommended The Dutch as the best  NY new resto – no comments ), the top 100 restaurants in NY and so on.

As a food bloggers Elise and I were thinking also on reviewing the best restaurant experience from this past year. We have been very fortunate this year and had a chance to visit restaurants that adds up more than 50 michelin stars, along with great restaurants that don’t even need that distinction because they are too good for that list. Some of those moments were at Mugaritz, Arzak, Community Table, Eleven Madison Park, Le Mirazur, Um Segredo, Roberta’s, Masten and Lake, Diner or Torrisi.

We were thinking on uploading some nice pictures and comment why, but while reviewing the pictures we realized how fortunate we are to even have a chance to go out to eat to a restaurant in this difficult economy time, and how unfair it will be to write about it, while there are people who do not even have income to pay their apartment rent.

On this line a food shelter in Spain ( Vida Digna ) developed a very interesting program in Vigo, Spain. This NGO has managed a shelter in a way that actually feels like a restaurant. The shelter has been divided in two parts, one for the people who like to eat solo, this can be the preferred area for some of our foody friends, and other area for families. This family area is being managed like a restaurant, where  there are waitress that go to the table and serve the food, take away the plates, ask about how was the food and they even have a dessert menu so kids can choose between ice-cream, yogurt, chocolate or peaches in syrup. All this for the kids, with the “only” intention to make them feel that they are going out to a restaurant instead of a shelter. To create a nice food experience for the kids, the same nice experience that most of us, as foodies, are looking forward in EMP, Per Se, Le Bernardin and others and hopefully also to create a future passion for food in those kids, that in any other way they would be able to develop.

You can read more about that NGO in Spain here: http://www.lavozdegalicia.es/vigo/2011/12/18/0003_201112V18C8991.htm

Family Christmas Dinner 2011 - Madrid, Spain-5897

So from this website we encourage to join one of the multiple NGO around your city and put in action what you know to do best, to help people in need. Sharing a skill is normally more important than even sharing money.

SO here is our list of BEST or TOP of the year, it is a simple list of NGO in New York where

  • http://www.foodbanknyc.org/how-you-can-help/volunteer
  • http://www.bowery.org/volunteer/
  • http://www.nycares.org/
  • http://www.nyc.gov/html/dhs/html/about/volunteer.shtml

I believe all together we can create a similar experience  in our community as the one those kids in Vigo have.

Feel free to add any other volunteer organization in the comments section

And what we are not going to resist to share is the best band of 2011: Metronomy

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