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Showing posts from November, 2012

It's the Weekend!

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Time for a delicious drink from my favorite little cocktail den Pravda.


The Gogol is comprised of Horseradish Vodka, Dill and a Pickled Quail Egg.  If your a horseradish lover as I am this drinks for you...


Pravda

Holiday Guide

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The tree has been lit in Rockefeller Center so it's time for my holiday guide to go back up.  I added it to the pages up top so if your planning a trip in to see the tree, please feel free to use this as your handy guide to some good eats.

NYC is a wonderful and magical place to visit around the holiday season. The Rockefeller Center tree is gorgeous, all the hotels are decked out in red and gold, holiday pop-up shops fill the parks- what could be better?

Unfortunately you have to be prepared for what I can only describe as controlled chaos. You will be wrangled like cattle to see the tree, stand in line at a Starbucks for 30 minutes, not for a caffeine fix but to use the single smelly bathroom and you’ll probably be so pooped out from all of your shopping and touring that you’ll see a TGI Friday’s or Olive Garden and think it’s an oasis in the storm. Two hours later (because you’ll have to wait for a table like all of the other tourists who thought the line at McDonald’s and Subway…

Oh My Pumpkin Pie

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If there's ever been a time to swing by Shake Shack now is the time to go.  Take a look...


It's their creamy vanilla frozen custard with a slice of pumpkin pie blended right inside.  It's the Pumpkin Pie, Oh My Fall Concrete and it's only available until December 2nd.  It may not look pretty but this is one of the best Concretes I've ever had from Shake Shack.  In fact it's the most popular Concrete they sell.   So go now before you miss the holiday window!

Shake Shack

Lunch At Junoon

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I can't tell you how many times I've walked past this restaurant before finally stopping in.  The space is absolutely stunning with bright canopy's, gorgeous Indian pillows and an open kitchen.  I was seated in the main area and ordered off the 3 course prix fix lunch menu.  To begin the Paneer Pakoras.



This massive plate of Paneer was somewhat disappointing.  The cheese had a lot more breading than I was used to and the sauce was a little too heavy on the mint.  I wish the cheese had more flavor and the sauce a bit less.  For my entree I went a pretty safe route with the Murg Lababdar.



The Chicken Tikka was all dark meat pieces in a thick tomato and cream sauce.  I enjoyed the sweet onion in the mix and used the perfect fluffy Naan to scoop it all up.



The Naan had a nice char on the bottom and the pot of rice was possibly the best I've ever had the pleasure of enjoying in my life.



It was so fluffy and delicate I was astonished at its perfect texture.



For dessert a seasonal…

Brunch at Toloache

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We were shopping around for brunch in Midtown West and Mexican was the first thing that popped into my mind of course.  Midtown West isn't exactly a great area for food so when I spotted Toloache on Opentable it seemed like a serviceable choice   We started out with a round of Michelada's and Bloody Mary's.


Then it was on to the best Mexican appetizer ever- chips and guacamole.



There wasn't any fan fare with the guac like you see at some Mexican restaurants.  No table side prep or fancy mortar...just good,avocado, tomato and lime.



The star of the brunch were these Fried Brussels Sprout with Queso Fresco.  They added toasted pumpkin seeds which gave it a nice satisfying crunch and threw in a little sherry vinaigrette for flavor.



The Huevos Rancheros had the standard crisp tortilla with crema and queso....I wasn't the best I've ever had but it was certainly tasty.  I thought Fonda in Alphabet City was better but for bunch in Midtown West it's good option.

Toloache

It's the Start of the Holidays!

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Just a little holiday post wishing everyone well!  I had such a lovely time up at Mr. T's parents house filled with luscious Jacques Torres Chocolates...



And some delicious red wines...



I wish every week could be filled with such good food, wine and family:)

A Little Snack at Maialino

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After a long day its nice to unwind.  The bar at Maialino looks directly onto Gramercy Park so it's a serene and peaceful escape from the craziness of the city.

Work had been so busy I had missed lunch so I nibbled on a little Pecornio with a thick, sweet honey.


Then onto an order of Roasted Squash with a raw squash vinaigrette...simple, clean, delicious flavors.

Maialino

Don Antonio By Sarta

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Wow this review is a long time coming!  Please forgive the lateness but this happened almost a month ago.  We were lucky enough to get tickets for Louie C. K. and after the early show ended we were immediately en route to Dona Antonio.  I will start by saying the best pizza in my opinion was the specialty Montanara Starita.



This had it all- light, crispy dough, smokey buffalo mozzarella and a great sauce.  If this was the only pizza we ordered I would have loved the place...but we ordered a lot more.  Let's start with our Rustica Salad.

This was nice with Prosciutto Di Parm, artichoke and olives on top of a bed of field greens.  I loved the briny olives and tangy lemon vinaigrette.



The Montanarine were forgettable...the puffed dough seemed to be lacking any salt and just tasted bland.




A slightly better Antipasti was the Arancini with a light crunch on the outside and creamy innards.  The next two pizzas is where things took a serious turn for me.  The Pizza Del Papas sounded fantastic…

Lunch at Ilili

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There's nothing better than spending a relaxing afternoon over food and Ilili is a perfect place for unwinding. The gorgeous room and soothing Mediterranean music make me feel like I've been transported to some exotic far off land.  The food is quite wonderful as well.  The last visit we started with the Manti- lamb dumplings with yogurt foam, tomato and pine nuts.



I was expecting bigger dumplings but I loved how tiny and dense these were. The combination of spicy lamb and cooling yogurt was an excellent play on flavor and texture.  It was honestly quite a sexy little dish.



The Black Iron Shrimp arrived in a little skillet covered in garlic, jalapeno and a sizzling butter sauce.



The Phoenician Fries came out nice and crisp covered with Sumac, Parsley and an addictive spicy Garlic Whip.  Mr. T and I both agreed these fries were fantastic.  Ilili can transport me any day...  

Ilili

A Tipsy Parson Brunch

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Sunday before the storm Mr. T's sister was heading back to Florida so we all met up for a brunch.  This was actually my pre-hurricane preparation meal so I went all out starting with a hearty bowl of mac and cheese.


I'm happy I split this starter because it was so rich and creamy I probably would have ate the whole thing myself and been unable to move.  The cavatelli noodles were perfect for keeping in all the sweet grafton cheese goodness and the breadcrumbs up top gave a nice crunch.


My entree the Migas was like a southern Huevos Rancheros.  The soft scrambled eggs were okay but I would probably order their Farm Stand dish with Brussels Sprout next time.


Mr. T went with some traditional southern brunch fare Fried Chicken and Waffles while I rounded out my meal with a nice peachy Bellini.

After lunch we went shopping for hurricane rations and Mr. T's sister got one of the last flights out of Laguardia.  Time to buckle down for the storm.
Tipsy Parson

More Delicious Fall Flavors at Doughnut Plant

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I love Doughnut Plant.  There's nothing better than walking into the bakery and smelling that yeasty warm aroma of rising dough. 


I planned on stopping in for a Creme Brulee but then I saw the Pumpkin Dough Seed and had no choice but to order both.

The glazed cake doughnut was filled with a thick pumpkin custard and covered in candied pumpkin seeds.  Thank goodness I have no will power because this dough seed was incredible.  It just might be my favorite doughnut yet.  Plus I gave the Creme Brulee to Mr. T so we both ended up winners:)
Doughnut Plant

Dinner at Colicchio and Sons

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We went out with Mr. T's entire family a few weeks back to celebrate his sister's birthday at Colicchio & Sons. The large open space was ideal for big groups and all seven of us fit comfortably around a round table perfect for conversation.   To begin two amuse bouche- Parsnip Soup and a Liverwurst Gruyere Gougere


The soup reminded me of the parsnip soup we had on my birthday at Daniel with that same creamy texture and warm bitter flavor. The gougere was surprisingly fantastic as well.  It tasted like a decadent french onion soup dumpling.  Onto appetizers Roasted Octopus with Caramelized Endive, Citrus and Chorizo Vinaigrette.


The octopus had been slow roasted resulting in a tender yet hearty dish that was amazing.  Although I enjoy a tad more char, this was the best octopus dish I've had since Babbo.  


Mr. T ordered the Sweetbreads which were also nice and tender but neither of us liked the large pool of squid ink underneath.  However we both loved his entree the Roaste…

Bice Restaurant

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When Mr. T worked in Midtown, his favorite place to grab an extended lunch was the Italian restaurant Bice.   I was never a part of those lunches, so when I saw they were celebrating their 25th Anniversary with a special four course meal of signature dishes I jumped on a reservation.  We were greeted warmly when we arrived and given a cozy table in the back.  To begin an Antipasti- Chilled Maine Lobster on a bed of mixed greens.

I loved the tangy shallot vinaigrette on the fresh veggies and greens.  The lobster was a tad overcooked but it was still a pleasant start to the meal.


A bread basket filled with fluffy focaccia and garlic rolls arrived right before my favorite course of the night Veal and Parma Ham Ravioli.

These big pillowy squares were intense.  I've never had a ravioli so chock full of meat and the rosemary black truffle sauce was rich and satisfying.   

Osso Buco was Mr. T's favorite dish of the night.  The braised veal shank was fall off the bone tender with a fragra…

Happy Friday!

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Wow- it has been a long and crazy week.  I can't wait to relax on the couch and sip on some frothy delicious Stouts.


What will you be enjoying this weekend...

A Little Bite at The Breslin

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Usually when I walk into The Breslin there's one thing on my mind...Thrice Cooked Chips!  But I was actually having a different food craving the other day for a big delicious Cesar Salad.


The Breslin Cesar is covered in a flurry of fresh herbs and pecorino, slivers of salty anchovy and crunchy homemade croutons.  As far as Cesar Salad's go I thought this was excellent.  Instead of romaine drowned in dressing the herbs were center stage and gave it a clean, natural taste.


A smokey gin and rosemary infused cocktail and my meal was complete:)
The Breslin