The CHOW Blog rss

Insights, tips, and restaurant reports from CHOW editors and Chowhound.

Texas Pecan Pie

Texas Pecan Pie

This pie's anything but humble. READ MORE

Fra’ Mani Salametto Trio

Fra’ Mani Salametto Trio

Achieve pork-fat nirvana. READ MORE

Braun Impressions Multiquick Handblender

Braun Impressions Multiquick Handblender

Pulverizing stuff Is fun. READ MORE

Ateco SP16 Silpat Baking Mat

Ateco SP16 Silpat Baking Mat

Silicone enhancement, for baking. READ MORE

Grand Cru Trio

Grand Cru Trio

A wine geek tool chest. READ MORE

Mario Batali Panini Grill

Mario Batali Panini Grill

Have a hot, melty sandwich. READ MORE

Drosselmeyer Nutcracker

Drosselmeyer Nutcracker

Fresh nuts made comfy. READ MORE

Four Chicken Soups, from New World and Old

Just what the doctor ordered: the knockout Mexican chicken soup at El Maguey y La Tuna. It’s a bowl of deeply flavorful, slightly spicy broth with a huge chicken leg in it. “This soup could kick the crap out of a seasonal flu (or a can of Campbell’s),” declares hopalong.

There’s another restorative chicken soup a few blocks west at Clinton Restaurant, which serves solid, cheap Dominican and Cuban chow. Its sturdy sopa de pollo gets a lift from a shot of lime, says haleyjen.

Uptown Dominican favorite El Malecon also dishes up a good and soothing sopa de pollo, reports Pan.

For an Old World interpretation, try the great chicken soup at Sarge’s Deli, suggests jon, who ranks it ahead of pastrami king Katz’s but a step behind the late, lamented Second Avenue Deli’s. His favorite: the Souper Soup, a giant helping of matzo ball soup with chicken, vegetables, noodles, and kreplach.

El Maguey y La Tuna [East Village]
321 E. Houston St., between Attorney and Ridge Sts., Manhattan
212-473-3744
Locater

Clinton Restaurant [Lower East Side]
293 E. Houston St., at Clinton, Manhattan
212-982-3222
Locater

El Malecon [Washington Heights]
4141 Broadway, at 175th St., Manhattan
212-927-3812
Locater

El Malecon [Upper West Side]
764 Amsterdam Ave., between W. 97th and 98th Sts., Manhattan
212-864-5648
Locater

El Malecon [Bronx]
5592 Broadway, at W. 231st St., Bronx
718-432-4760
Locater

Sarge’s Delicatessen Restaurant [Murray Hill]
548 3rd Ave., between E. 36th and 37th Sts., Manhattan
212-679-0442
Locater

Sarge’s Delicatessen Restaurant [Nassau County]
236 W. Jericho Tpke., between Greenfield Rd. and Burke Ln., Syosset, NY
516-677-1900
Map

Board Links
Matzo Ball Soup
Chicken Soup (with the works)

Pithari: Greek Grill Mastery in Highland Park, NJ

Nicely char-grilled souvlaki is a smart choice at Pithari, a new taverna opened by the owners of Athens Corner Inn, a Greek grocery next door. Lamb gyro and lamb cubes–served in platters with tzatziki, pitas, fries, onion, lettuce, and tomato–are both delicious, says Angelina. Others report tasty salads, spinach pie, and other appetizers. Desserts at the restaurant, as at the grocery, are wonderful, says Gabbeh.

Open since September, Pithari looks like an instant hit, drawing crowds with its inviting dining room and terrace as well as its chow. It’s BYOB, and the grocery next door carries a decent selection of Greek wines. Angelina recommends a delicious dry red from Amethystos, $21 at the store and as much as four times that at some Manhattan restaurants.

Hounds report a few disappointments, including a tendency to run out of seafood entrees. adi complains that the moussaka was lukewarm and the service downright chilly, but adds that spreads and breads were very good.

Pithari Taverna [Middlesex County]
28 Woodbridge Ave., between 7th and 8th Aves., Highland Park, NJ
732-572-0616
Map

New Athens Corner Inn [Middlesex County]
28 Woodbridge Ave., between 7th and 8th Aves., Highland Park, NJ
732-572-0721
Locater

Board Links
Greek Taverna in Highland Park
New Delicious Greek Restaurant in Highland Park!! PITHARI TAVERNA

Turkey Stock

If you’re planning on preparing dishes for Thanksgiving that call for turkey stock, you’re in a bit of a spot. First, you kind of need a turkey carcass to make stock with, and your Thanksgiving turkey won’t qualify as a “carcass” until after the fact. Luckily for those planning on making stock from scratch, Willie Bird Turkeys sells carcasses, parts, giblets, and more year-round, in additional to whole turkeys. Highly recommended by Melanie Wong.

However, if you’re not quite that hard core, you can buy great house-made turkey stock from Bryan’s Grocery, says marinrain. They also sell sauces and gravies. Also check out Boulette’s Larder in the Ferry Building, says Lori SF.

Willie Bird Turkeys [Sonoma County]
5350 Highway 12, Santa Rosa
707-545-3308
Locater

Bryan’s Grocery [Laurel Heights]
3445 California St., San Francisco
415-752-0179
Locater

Boulette’s Larder [Embarcadero]
Ferry Building Marketplace
1 Ferry Building, Shop #48, San Francisco
415-399-1155
Locater

Board Links
diestal turkey prices? availability
Buying homemade turkey stock