Insights, tips, and restaurant reports from CHOW editors and Chowhound.
Luna Espresso recently replaced a Dunkin' Donuts, instantly improving the Yorkville coffee scene. Uptown java hounds report expertly made lattes, high-end Clover hardware, and the best iced coffee on the Upper East Side. "This is a real plus for the neighborhood!" says Brian W.
Luna Espresso [Upper East Side]
1593 First Avenue (at E. 83rd Street), Manhattan
Discuss: Luna Espresso - UES
Cold-brewed iced coffee, anywhere between 42nd-100th?
West Africans like their meat chewy, and fredid is coming around to their way of thinking. At Papaye in the Bronx, the stewed goat that comes with palaver sauce, the Ghanian stew of greens and egusi (ground squash seed), is "gamy and great!" This luncheonette, the older of two Papayes in a small Ghanian enclave, is a friendly joint, but the illustrated menu is short on explanation. fredid suggests that those new to the cuisine might want to read up a bit before dropping by.
196 McClellan Street (near Sherman Avenue), Bronx
Discuss: Delicious Ghanaian food! In the Bronx, easily accessible
By Iso Rabins
Iso Rabins of forageSF is guest blogging for us every once in a while. Read his last post on throwing a potluck for strangers. Follow him on Twitter @forageSF. Read his blog at at foragesf.wordpress.com.
People love to eat flowers. It’s a fact. I was talking to a vendor at a farmers market one time, and he told me that the $4 salad mixes he sold could sell for $8 if he put in a couple edible flowers. Nothing fancy, just nasturtiums or wild radish, things he found around the farm. There is something about eating something so beautiful that draws people in. Consuming beauty, rather than just observing it…maybe too deep, but maybe true.
Thick 'n' creamy ice cream is the house scoop at Mr. and Mrs. Miscellaneous, a new ice creamery in Bayview, says hhc. "I'd compare it to Bi-Rite, but Mr. & Mrs Misc. is organic, so big thumbs-up!"
Flavors include classic vanilla bean, mint chocolate, choco-malted crunch, and candied ginger. "Grapefruit sorbet was liking eating a real grapefruit, wow," hhc says. Less impressive was the intriguing-sounding Ballpark (Anchor beer, peanuts, chocolate pretzels)—the pretzels weren't so great, hhc thinks.
Like the ice cream, the cones and toppings (including hot fudge, caramel, and butterscotch) are made in-house by owners Ian and Annabelle, a super-nice couple.
Mr. and Mrs. Miscellaneous [Dogpatch/Potrero]
699 22nd Street, San Francisco
Discuss: NEW: Mr. & Mrs. Miscellaneous ice cream shop, SF – Recommended!
Now that Orson is serving weekend brunch, it's the place to go for the best ramen in San Francisco, says Melanie Wong.
The crown jewel is the cha su pork, "four generous slices of meaty heaven" that are tender and succulent, with the perfect hint of cured tanginess. They're paired with wide, hand-cut noodles that would be great if they weren't cooked in advance, but they're still nicely elastic. Unfortunately, the broth is "low on meaty intensity" and its spicing is harsh.
Elsewhere in the ramen world, Halu is doubling down on its spring specials with tan tan men, a spicy blend with miso and sesame seeds. It's rich, spicy, meaty, and slightly sweet. The broth is more like a sauce, too intense to really sip, Melanie says. The nutty, firm whole wheat noodles complete a great bowl.
Orson Restaurant [SOMA]
508 4th Street, San Francisco
Ramen Halu [South Bay]
375 Saratoga Avenue, San Jose
Discuss: Brunching on Ramen + Ramos Fizz @ Orson Restaurant Bar + Lounge in San Francisco
Spring Special Tantan Men at Ramen Halu in San Jose
Bartenders see people's worst drunken shenanigans. But when we spoke to them about what behaviors were most annoying, the real problem was not a little raucousness but customers' lack of basic courtesy. Here are the top eight complaints: READ MORE
Meat Eaters Need Not Apply: An Internet flap ensued after the Sweetpea Baking Company in Portland, Oregon, tweeted a help-wanted ad that specified, "Being vegan is also required." After a debate about the legality of the requirement ensued in Tweetsville, the bakery tweeted a kinder, gentler ad: "The ideal candidate would also be vegan." via Eater National READ MORE
A variety of techniques and ingredients make tender and well-flavored meatballs to eat with tomato sauce on pasta or in sandwiches.
Most hounds like a mixture of meats, such as beef and pork or Italian sausage. Karl S thinks that beef or bison gives depth of flavor, pork or bulk pork sausage adds sweetness, and veal lends a better texture. CHOW's Italian Meatballs combine, beef, pork, and turkey.
Many prefer using a panade of bread soaked in milk to breadcrumbs; cocktailhour uses buttermilk to soak the bread. "I use English muffins," says coll, "soaked in heavy cream. When I switched from regular bread to muffins something just clicked. If you want to add a handful of breadcrumbs, panko will fluff everything up nicely."
There are lots of seasoning possibilities. kookiegoddess likes the combo of parsley, nutmeg, lemon zest, salt, freshly ground pepper, and "a good heap of Parmesan." Spot says a couple of anchovies heated in olive oil until they dissolve add "a salty umami hit." "I fry a test meatball to see if I've got the seasoning right," says vafarmwife.
Cynsa's favorite recipe is these meatballs braised in tomato and white wine from A16 in San Francisco, which include beef, pork, pancetta, and ricotta. Phurstluv makes Cook's Country magazine's big Italian meatballs and freezes them by the batch.
Discuss: I want to make GREAT meatballs