Marcus Samuelsson tours NYC eats with past Yankees in new show

The New York Yankees season might have been a strikeout, but chef Marcus Samuelsson’s show, out every Tuesday on the YES Network app, is a grand slam.

In “Home Plate,” Samuelsson, 50, ventures out to a diverse selection of NYC’s best mom and pop eateries chosen by former Yankees — Bernie Williams, 53, and David Cone, 58 — the New York Liberty’s Rookie of the Year Michaela Onyenwere, 22, along with Lorraine Bracco, 67, and Steve Schirripa, 64, of “The Sopranos.”

“It’s all we love about the city. It’s sports, it’s family, it’s people,” Samuelsson told The Post about his new series, in which he helps prepare a variety of dishes — from old-school Italian, Nigerian and Puerto Rican, all the way to some hardy Texas barbecue — with local chefs.

But the real fun goes down as Samuelsson yuks it up at the table with these New York icons, who give him “a back of the house” look into their lives, taste buds and achievements.

Bernie Williams (second from left) joins Marcus Samuelsson, the Yankee legend’s daughter Beatriz, and Counter & Bodega owner Sophie Serrano on “Home Plate.”

In one scene, Cone tells of a prank he pulled during the 2000 World Series, where he convinced late Yankees owner George Steinbrenner that the Mets had been spying on their clubhouse, resulting in the Boss pulling his perfect-game pitcher into a headlock. When it comes to adventures with Steinbrenner, Cone told The Post, “There’s definitely a few of them that are almost ‘Seinfeld’ episode-like stories.”

In others, Williams reminisces about playing his guitar on rides to away games — he even got Derek Jeter to sing Lionel Richie on occasion — and Onyenwere shares some surprising facts about her journey to success (including that no one in her family played basketball).

Looking to eat like these big names? Here are their hand-picked spots, all based on the cultures they grew up in.

David Cone’s pitch-perfect barbecue

Hill Country Barbecue Market is a brisket lover's paradise.
Hill Country Barbecue is a brisket lover’s paradise.
Stefano Giovannini

Barbecue is just shy of a religion in Cone’s native city of Kansas City, Mo. — so he knows that Hill Country Barbecue Market in the Flatiron District means business.

“It’s about as good as it gets in New York City,” the pitcher told The Post. “The focus is on the meat instead of the sauces.”

Going behind the scenes with Hill Country’s culinary director, Ash Fulk, Cone and Samuelsson got a glimpse of what goes into the eatery’s iconic “classic brisket barbecue,” cooked on a massive, custom-made smoker for about 13 hours.

If there's two things David Cone is an expert at, it's baseball and barbeque.
If there’s two things David Cone is an expert at it’s baseball and barbecue.
for the NY POST

Hill Country Barbecue Market, 30 W. 26th St.;

Nigerian delicacies beloved by Michaela Onyenwere

Samuelsson and Onyenwere work up Nigerian delights with Buka owner Lookman Afolayan.
Samuelsson and Onyenwere work up Nigerian delights with Buka owner Lookman Afolayan.

The daughter of Nigerian parents, this WNBA standout was eager to eat at one of her favorite restaurants, Buka, an African eatery in Brooklyn.

Actually, good Nigerian cuisine “was one of the first things” Onyenwere once drafted to her New York team, she said.

Buka owner and chef Lookman Afolayan took Onyenwere and Samuelsson backstage to whip up a traditional stew made with the cassava-based dough known as fufu, as well as spicy meat skewers called suya and jollof rice, which Samuelsson calls “the secret of West Africa.”

Both Samuelsson and Onyenwere were visibly having fun in this episode.
Both Samuelsson and Onyenwere were visibly having fun in this episode.

Buka, 946 Fulton St., Clinton Hill;

Bernie Williams’ Puerto Rican pick

Empanadas and rice from Counter & Bodega.
Empanadas and rice are a draw at Counter & Bodega.
Credit: counterandbodega/Instagr

The spice and flare of Puerto Rican restaurant Counter & Bodega in Chelsea was perfect for Williams, a first-timer to the eatery and native of the island.

In their episode, chef Alejandro Carretero teaches Williams and Samuelsson the tricks to making sofrito sauce; plantain-based dishes such as mashed mofongo and stuffed-and-fried pionono; and some scrumptious looking empanadas.

The outfielder opens up about his passion outside of baseball — playing guitar — and even performs some merengue tableside.

“Music came oddly enough at the same time I was playing baseball,” Williams told Samuelsson about growing up in Puerto Rico.

If there's one thing Bernie Williams loves as much as baseball, it's his guitar.
Williams marries his two loves when he plays guitar at the Baseball Hall of Fame’s induction ceremonies.

Counter & Bodega, 216 Seventh Ave., Chelsea;

A ‘Sopranos’ reunion in The Bronx

This Arthur Avenue staple makes a special appearance on "Home Plate."
Linguine with chopped clams and shrimp in a light tomato sauce at Enzo’s of Arthur Avenue.
Helayne Seidman
Steve Schirripa is a huge fan of Enzo's meatballs.
Schirripa is a huge fan of Enzo’s meatballs.
David X Prutting/
Lorraine Bracco had tons of fun making Italian meals and sharing moments from making "The Sopranos.'
Bracco had tons of fun making Italian meals, and sharing memories from making “The Sopranos.”

Bracco and Schirripa chose to try Italian staple Enzo’s on Arthur Avenue for their episode, which airs Tuesday.

They headed to the kitchen to make various pork dishes, pastas and Enzo’s signature meatballs with onions and peppers, later sharing all sorts of stories from the “Sopranos” set, owner Ralph Martucci told The Post.

“They really indulged in it. Steve loved the meatballs,” said Martucci, whose restaurant was shuttered for 10 months during the pandemic.

Spotlighting NYC’s beleaguered restaurant industry is part of the show’s mission, said its host.

“With COVID, we’ve all had to work harder to get back together,” Samuelsson said. “It feels amazing to support these small business [with] some legends of our city.”

Enzo’s, 2339 Arthur Ave., Little Italy, The Bronx;


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