La Fonda Del Sol

La Fonda Del Sol

Fonda del Sol 1

LOCATION 200 Park Avenue (at 44th Street and Vanderbilt Avenue) MetLife Building, New York, NY 10166

OPENED January 19, 2009

RESERVATIONS (212) 867-6767, additional: (212) 867-6867


OWNER/OPERATOR Patina Restaurant Group
Nick Valenti, Restaurateur and CEO


GENERAL MANAGER Santiago Pesantez

WINE DIRECTOR Nicholas Nahigian

MENU Modern Spanish Cuisine, with Latin influences and a focus on tapas.
Separate menus for the bar room and the dining room.

LAYOUT The split-level area consists of a bar room on the ground floor and a dining room on the upper level, separated by an illuminated glass wall behind the bar with an etched pattern.


DESIGN A sophisticated color palette mixes vibrant and neutral shades to revitalize the restaurant for the 21st century while still honoring its abstract, iconic design roots by Alexander Girard. Banquettes are upholstered in a vivid striped Paul Smith fabric; café floor is made up of black and white checkerboard terrazzo complemented by the geometric square ceiling pattern; bright red chairs and bar stools provide a pop of color. The dining room has an intimate atmosphere with dark brown limed oak panels and up-lighting, as well as a wine room. A three-dimensional oculus in the ceiling creates depth.



CAPACITY 80 seats in lounge, 24 stools at tapas bar
106 in main dining room

Review By Nancy Walman

Fonda del Sol NYC 2


A Classic: Even Better The Second Time Around

Patina Restaurant Group opened La Fonda del Sol on January 19, 2009, with Josh DeChellis as Executive Chef – 47 years after its inception. The restaurant provides an unprecedented stage for modern Spanish cuisine in New York. The menu includes an expansive selection of dishes from across Spain, with a focus on tapas.

“I was inspired not to duplicate our iconic property from the 1960’s, but rather to reinterpret its culinary ambition, high style and design,” said Patina Restaurant Group’s renowned restaurateur Nick Valenti. “La Fonda del Sol was ahead of its time and had a fresh, exotic appeal that I wanted to bring back.”

Chef Josh DeChellis’ extended stays in Spain, working at Martín Berasategui in Lasarte, Adolfo in Toledo and Arzak in San Sebastián, have allowed him to not only research but also to experience the unparalleled variety and nuances of the country’s cuisine and culture. Born in Bogota, Colombia, his background lends a Latin overlay to the menu at La Fonda del Sol, as does his creativity and clean, authentic style honed during his years as chef at some of New York’s most interesting restaurants including Sumile and Bar Fry.

La Fonda is bound to establish DeChellis as one of America’s most talented young chefs. Of a multi-course dinner, there wasn’t one clinker. Exquisite baby scallops were served raw in their shell with a squeeze of Meyer’s lemon as a teaser. This was followed by sushi grade Tuna Tacos with avocado and jalapeño pickled onion and the traditional Salt Cod Croquetas (like a Brandade) with romesco sauce. The next appetizer course consisted of Potted Duckling and Pork
with Oloroso Sherry wine on toasted bread, dramatically mixed tableside, the subtle flavor, a devastating and clever play on “Rillettes.” Equally wonderful, were melt in your mouth Braised Pork Cheeks with
judiones beans, sausage and parsnips and fresh asparagus with hand carved acorn fed Iberian ham and breaded Quail Egg on Micro Greens proved that less is definitely more and simple is always better.

For entrees we chose the not to be missed Cochinillo/Suckling Pig, with smoked dates and almonds. The parchment crisp skin and moist meat arrived in an aesthetic and contemporary presentation. Wild Halibut with shaved Hearts of Palm was lovely and Potatoes Brava, a side, should win the award as the best potato dish of the year.

You must precede desserts with Artisan Cheeses: Idiazabal, Valdeon Blue, Caña de Cabra, and Manchego or slices of “Pata Negra,” a remarkable ham, previously unavailable in America, with a glass of the unique dark dessert wine from Uruguay. But save room for a truly “Wicked” Chocolate Cake with Manjari Chocolate, Guajillo Chile, Cinnamon and Milk Ice Cream and the best Bunyols/Cinnamon Fritters we’ve ever tasted, here, served with Salty Caramel, Maracuya, Peppercorn Rose, and Orange Chocolate sauces.

The wine list is beautifully chosen and very reasonably priced (check out the two Cavas), as is the food. There is a fine selection by the glass. Signature cocktails are generous, wonderful and creative with the Margarita and Pisco Sour stealing the show. Service is rewarding, benevolent and professional.

The original La Fonda Del Sol was one of the first theme restaurants, created by Joe Baum and designed by Alexander Girard in the early sixties. Abstract and iconic, Girard’s design was reverent in its use of cultural references and folk art, and incorporated graphics, signs, menus, and matchboxes, in addition to tableware and uniforms.

This time around, The Patina Group commissioned Tihany Design to conceive the new space. Tihany utilized a sophisticated color palette mixing vibrant and neutral shades and sunburst graphics throughout – even extending to the china – to revitalize the restaurant for the 21st century, while still honoring its historical design roots. Tihany’s innovative design has breathed an inspired second wind into the original concept for a modern and lively result.

The split-level area consists of a café bar on the ground floor, and a dining room on the upper level. The two spaces are separated by an illuminated glass wall behind the bar with an etched sunburst pattern in order to enable guests in the café to see the action in the dining room. The café floor is made up of black and white checkerboard terrazzo reminiscent of the original La Fonda Del Sol, which is complemented by the geometric square ceiling pattern. Classic limed oak panels cover the walls while bright red chairs and bar stools, both with metal bases, provide a pop of color.

From the café bar, a softly lit stairwell leads guests up a short distance to the dining room. A carpet with sunburst patterns in hues of violet, mulberry, and cream atop dark brown covers the floor, harmonizing with a three-dimensional oculus ceiling feature to create depth. Gold leaf coats the highest point of the oculus. Dark brown limed oak panels with up-lighting at the top edge cover walls creating an intimate atmosphere. With a sophisticated color palette throughout, the back banquette is upholstered in brown, burgundy, and mulberry striped fabric, with custom dining room chairs in similar plum shades; all evocative of vibrant Latin American colors. Bursts of breathtaking flowers accentuate the whole. A wine room offering a premium selection of wine is visible in the back of the dining room. A photographic installation of abstract images representing matadors continues the vivid color story.

La Fonda del Sol Tuna Tacos

The Fabulous Tuna Tacos

La Fonda del Sol is located at 200 Park Avenue (enter on 44th Street and Vanderbilt Avenue) in the MetLife Building.Guests can make reservation by calling (212) 867-6767.

New York has finally received the luxury Spanish restaurant it has been waiting for. La Fonda del Sol is a dream come true and the finest Spanish restaurant in Manhattan. It is absolutely on a par with the city’s best French and Italian restaurants and rates A Major on the Walman Report.

Copyright 2009 By Punch In International. All Rights Reserved

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Savvy Travellers Save in Post-Olympics China

Good Things Come to Those Who Wait

Savvy Travellers Save in Post-Olympics China

The promise of pageantry and spectacle at last summer’s Olympics drew 130 million tourists to China in 2008. But savvy travellers in search of a more authentic experience chose to postpone their travel until this summer, avoiding the Olympic-sized crowds and benefitting from improved infrastructure around the country. Now, the reward is that much greater: today’s currency rate has allowed Abercrombie & Kent to negotiate significant savings of up to $8,160 per person and 75% off international business class airfare on select journeys through China.

The Olympics showcased China’s rich history, culture and traditions, in addition to visually dramatic new icons such as the Beijing National Stadium (Bird’s Nest) and Water Cube. Tourism infrastructure built in anticipation of the Games has dramatically improved the ease of travel to, and within China: from the soaring new Terminal 3 at Beijing Capital International Airport to new Four Seasons, Ritz Carlton and Peninsula Hotels, new transportation options such as the Skyrail in Shanghai and relaxed visa requirements.

No matter what your travel plans, Abercrombie & Kent is offering unbeatable deals on select dates and cabin categories on Yangzi cruises:

· Solo travelers save up to $3,755 on Highlights of China, an escorted journey through Beijing, Xian and Shanghai, with a three-day cruise through the scenic Three Gorges on the new Yangzi Explorer. Couples save up to $1,000 per person and 50% off the second business class ticket on Northwest Airlines.

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Café Gray Deluxe, a 21st century ‘grand café’

Swire Hotels to open new hotel – ‘The Upper House’ in Hong Kong

Following the successful launch of its first hotel, The Opposite House in Beijing, Swire Hotels is to unveil its second hotel, The Upper House, in Hong Kong this October.

The hotel is conveniently located within Pacific Place in Admiralty, Hong Kong Island’s premier integrated commercial, retail and hospitality complex.

The hotel’s 117 rooms, all featuring scenic harbour or island views, including 21 suites and 2 penthouses, begin at 730sq ft – the largest in Hong Kong. Bathrooms of over 300 sq ft framed with panoramic windows, come with walk-in rain showers, dressing area and deep soaking baths.

Café Gray Deluxe, a 21st century ‘grand café’ located on the 49th floor overlooking Victoria Harbour, marks the return of celebrated chef Gray Kunz to Hong Kong with his unique style of European classics and signature dishes from a lifetime leading the very finest kitchens in Europe, Asia and America. The vibrant restaurant is highlighted by a 14 meter long open kitchen and equally long bar.

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This year Cinco de Mayo falls on Tuesday, May 5th, but don’t let the weekday fool you – there will be plenty of opportunities to get in fiesta mode this year. What better way to commemorate all things Mexican than with great food & drinks at some of New York City’s best restaurants.

Cabrito (50 Carmine Street, NYC 212.929.5050 gets in the fiesta spirit with not one, but two celebrations this year: Cinco de Mayo and the restaurant’s One Year Anniversary. The party will get things started with a special weekday offering of the restaurant’s $9 brunch drink special, which gets you your choice of three Bloody Mary’s, Sangrias, or Mimosas. Continuing throughout the day with special happy hour drink deals, including $3 Coronas, $5 margaritas and pints ($3) / pitchers ($12) Dos Equis and a special street-food menu. The main event will kick off at 9pm when the party gets going with Mexican hip hop, piñatas, a specialty cocktail called the Nuevo Paseo ($12) and business card raffles every hour to win four free shots of tequila!

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Targus® Launches Its First Netbook Accessory Kit


Targus® Launches Its First Netbook Accessory Kit
Targus Provides Customized Line of Netbook Essentials Based Upon Users’ Needs

Targus® Inc., maker of the world’s top-selling laptop computer cases and accessories, announced today it is launching its first Netbook Accessory Kit, designed specifically to meet the everyday needs of the netbook user on the go. The new accessories kit was developed after asking hundreds of Netbook users what they needed most with their new Netbook. The Targus Netbook Accessory Kit includes the Targus Slipskin Peel Mini-Netbook Case, the Targus Ultra Mini Retractable Optical Mouse and the Targus Ultra-Mini USB 2.0 4-Port Hub.

With sales of netbook laptop computers expecting to reach 35 million in 2009 and an estimated 139 million by 2013*, Targus’ Netbook Accessories Kit offers the increasing number of netbook users compact and practical mini-laptop accessories for the ultimate in simplicity and mobility.

“The current increase of mobile networking and remote access to web-based applications has led to netbooks becoming a recognized computing device for personal and business needs alike,” said Al Giazzon, vice president of marketing at Targus, Inc. “The new Netbook Accessory Kit was created with the everyday needs of a netbook user in mind and provides all the tools needed to maximize a netbook user’s mobile experience.”

Targus 10.2″ Slipskin Peel Netbook Case (Model # TSS11101US)
The Targus 10.2″ Slipskin Peel Netbook Case is a lightweight, form-fitting, neoprene skin that shields your netbook from scratches and dust.

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Maude Maggart - 2007 Photo 1a




APRIL 14 – MAY 23

MAUDE MAGGART, the critically-acclaimed chanteuse – hailed as “bewitching” by The New York Times, “utterly enchanting” by the New York Post and “stunning” by the Los Angeles Times – will return to THE OAK ROOM of THE ALGONQUIN HOTEL for a six week engagement from April 14 – May 23. Her new show will feature songs by Stephen Sondheim (“Children and Art”), Rodgers & Hammerstein (“You’ve Got To Be Carefully Taught”), Judy Collins (“First Boy I Loved”), George Gershwin (“Love Is Here To Stay), Alec Wilder (“Be A Child”) and Marshall Barer (What’s My Name?”). She will be joined by Musical Director John Boswell on piano and Yair Evnine on cello and guitar. All performances are at the Oak Room (59 West 44th Street, between Fifth and Sixth Avenues). Please call (212) 419-9331 for reservations.

Before coming to New York, the new show will have a special preview engagement at the Gardenia in Los Angeles on April 2, 8 and 9.

MAUDE MAGGART, the vocalist who started her performing career in the clubs of New York and Los Angeles, is exploding into one of today’s most compelling international concert artists. This June she will make her third annual engagement in London as part of Jeff Harnar’s “American Songbook in London” series. Maude has been featured on NPR’s “Morning Edition,” a Time Out New York cover story and Entertainment Weekly’s “Must List.” Maude recently filmed her screen debut in a new movie about composer Kurt Weill by director/actor/screenwriter Robert Downey, Sr. She recorded a duet with Broadway and TV star John Lithgow for his CD, The Sunny Side of the Street, which was nominated for a Grammy Award. In 2007, Maude made her Australian debut as part of the Adelaide Cabaret Festival.


Belize Conquers the Inconceivable

Belize Conquers the Inconceivable


Affordable, Exotic and Fun Family Travel – For Under $75/Night
Economical escapes await families along Belize’s Caribbean coastline and inland jungles

Belize City, Belize – April 08, 2009 – Families frantically searching for affordable and fun summer travel options will find Belize as their perfect escape, as the destination is offering stays for less than $75 per night – with each hotel promising good value, comfort and entertainment for the entire family. As one of the hottest emerging family destinations on the travel scene, Belize features an extensive selection of affordable hotel options, which can be accessed at Belize’s Toucan Trail website, An assortment of hotels of this caliber is listed below, with rooms available for $75 or less per night, and enough activities to avoid boredom complaints from the kids:

Caye Caulker

Jaguar Morning Star Guest House: Named by Travel + Leisure as one of the emerging and affordable beach destinations for 2009, Caye Caulker is ideal for those families looking to enjoy a beach vacation with tons of activities for both parents and kids. Jaguar Morning Star Guest House sits in the middle of Caye Caulker, and is a short walk from the market, beach, restaurants and water activities including kayaking, snorkeling, scuba diving, manatee tours, windsurfing and has bike rentals on-site. Rising above the other roof tops, the rooms at this guest house have spectacular views of both the sunrise and the sunset over the water, and offer a constant breeze throughout the day.
• Price: $45 – $60USD per night
• Telephone: 011.501.226.0347 (ask for Allison or Joanne)
• Email:
• Website:

Da Real Macaw: Located right on one of the sandy beaches of Caye Caulker, featuring

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