Chef Catherine Medrano’s love of cooking reaches far beyond the kitchen. As she notes, cooking for the ones she loves is a favorite activity, and her style was largely influenced by her upbringing in a large New Jersey family known for trying different cuisines at its own dinner table. Today she brings those influences and passions to her role as executive chef at The Regency Bar & Grill inside Park Avenue’s Loews Regency New York. Her focus on local, seasonal foods and the carbon footprint align well with the flavors and menu at The Regency Bar & Grill, home of the famed “Power Breakfast.” The restaurant’s revamped menus offer approachable, ingredient-forward dishes simply prepared and executed. Medrano also oversees menu development and staff training and supervises culinary presentations and in-room dining. Medrano’s career began at Johnson & Wales University in Providence, R.I., and The Greenbrier Culinary Apprenticeship Program. From there she moved to hotels, first with The Stanhope Park Hyatt New York before relocating to the Midwest as executive sous chef at Park Hyatt Chicago. The East Coast beckoned once again, and Medrano returned as executive chef at The Hyatt Regency Jersey City in 2007. She joined Loews Regency New York in 2016. Her passion for her craft seeps into her personal time with her husband, three children and two grandchildren, gardening at her New Jersey home, where she grows everything from melons to squash and peach, fig and olive trees. Outside of the kitchen, she enjoys traveling to Key West, Fla., and visiting extended family in Ireland and the Dominican Republic — all, of course, while keeping up with food and restaurant trends through food blogs and cookbooks. WHAT THREE GO-TO INGREDIENTS ARE ALWAYS IN YOUR HOME KITCHEN? Vinegars … all kinds, I love acidity; kosher salt for a million uses; and fresh vegetables, including aromats — we do a lot of “from scratch” cooking. WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE SEASON FOR COOKING, AND WHY? Autumn, without a doubt — it’s all about root vegetables, slow cooking, great aromas and satisfying meals. ASIDE FROM YOUR CURRENT POSITION, WHAT’S THE BEST JOB YOU’VE EVER HAD? I was a lifeguard in another life a looooong time ago. I won’t go into details about how much fun it was. WHAT’S THE FIRST MEAL YOU EVER COOKED? It was steak and potatoes I cooked for my siblings. I remember clearly “changing things up” and trying things they weren’t used to. It went over well, and I did a lot more cooking over the years for them. Cooking for the people I love is truly one of life’s great joys for me.
Loews Regency New York
540 Park Ave. New York, NY 10065 tel 212 759 4100 loewshotels.com
Norway, a haven for visionary artists, architects and designers, showcases an exceptionally diverse array of cultural attractions. This year, the country commemorates exciting milestones and unveilings captivating enthusiasts of the arts, from iconic scenic routes to new museums to gallery openings. Up Norway features these new offerings in personalized itineraries catered to aesthetes.
IHG Hotels & Resorts is thrilled to announce the launch of a new mobile product feature for members: IHG Wi-Fi Auto Connect. This feature is now available exclusively in the IHG One Rewards mobile app for both iOS and Android users and will automatically connect IHG One Rewards members to WiFi upon arrival at more than 5,000 IHG hotels worldwide — no separate passwords or log-ins needed. This is in addition to the exciting benefits of being an IHG Business Edge member. IHG Business Edge provides small- and medium-sized businesses access to a user-friendly portal that displays comprehensive spending and savings data while providing the convenience of direct booking with a guaranteed discount.
As a peripatetic traveler, I am always trying to balance the pleasures of dining well with a life-long challenge to control my weight. It’s not always easy, because I consider tasting typical, authentic regional dishes among the highlights of most journeys, and those foods are rarely known for “healthful” rankings! So, I started staying at spas way back in the 1980s — before they were ubiquitous — because meals were assured to be pure, clean and wholesome.
Flying to the paradise of Turks & Caicos has never been easier thanks to many new, non-stop flights across three airlines to the destination. Southwest Airlines, Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic Airways all announced new flights, allowing travelers to visit this dreamy destination.
The Mondrian Bordeaux Les Carmes recently opened in Bordeaux’s elegant Chartrons district, bringing 97 upscale rooms to France’s southwestern city. Occupying a 19th-century house that once held the wine cellars of Maison Calvet, the hotel marks Mondrian’s first European property for celebrated Japanese chef Masaharu Morimoto, who helms the menu and concept for the hotel’s restaurant, Morimoto Bordeaux.
With the rush of Black Friday and Cyber Monday over, many of us still wrack our brains on what to buy friends and family this holiday season. For the traveler in your life, finding the perfect gift can go a long way. Here are some top-quality products sure to impress loved ones this season:
The Islands of Tahiti offer a range of captivating activities for travelers with diverse interests, from hiking to breathtaking waterfalls, riding horses on secluded beaches; swimming with sharks; or immersing in Polynesian culture through traditional dance, music and art. For watersports enthusiasts, the crystal-clear lagoons offer exhilarating experiences like surfing, kiteboarding and paddleboarding. And if you’re looking to relax, the pristine beaches, overwater bungalows and tropical sun offer the perfect setting. With 118 islands and atolls to explore, island hopping is an excellent way to experience the full diversity of The Islands of Tahiti. With its blend of adventure, culture and relaxation, The Islands of Tahiti offer a truly unique travel experience.
PHOTO: © VADYM LAVRA | DREAMSTIME.COM