Peter Cuce's Profile

Title Last Reply

Dim sum in NYC

But Flushing and BK are not a whole lot better. It's a family of differently heighted midgets. What about Dim Sum Palace? Has that opened yet?

about 11 hours ago
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Piora revisited- Fantastic dinner!!

I went two weeks ago and shared two starters, two pastas, and an entree with my date and we were mostly unimpressed and pretty disappointed given the prices. The pastas and fish were especially blah.

The cocktails were the high point except for the after dinner Irish coffee made with Blue Bottle cold brew - the coffee tasted old.

1 day ago
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Best not-"third wave" espresso/coffee?

There are hundreds of other third wave shops, including about 10 other branches of Blue Bottle. While companies might strive for consistency across branches, that is mostly a fantasy at this point, so your mileage may vary depending on which shop you go to.

Third wave refers mostly to the improvements made to the growing and sourcing of coffee, although preparation is of course important too.

I'm not with you on recommending Abraço, not for coffee anyway, but it is a cool little shop for vibe and some of their sweet treats.

Jan 28, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Best not-"third wave" espresso/coffee?

Wine analogy doesn't apply because wine is produced, bottled and sold as is. After coffee is roasted it has to be prepared by someone before being served and there are many factors that can result in a bad cup: grind size, humidity, water temperature, water pressure, grinder quality/uniformity of grind, tamping pressure/uniformity, pull length, roast defects.

Wine analogy can apply somewhat on the tasting side.

Jan 28, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Best not-"third wave" espresso/coffee?

Your earlier posts in this thread were coherent but as usual you've degenerated into nonsense.

Jan 27, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Best not-"third wave" espresso/coffee?

They have had a few times. But their average everyday cups are around $4. Uncoincidentally those were rare microlots.

Lots of small roasters have microlots. Parlor just had a bunch. Joe has Microlot Mondays. Plowshares, Grumpy and others as well.

Almost all of these small roasters are doing direct trade, at least partly. Cafe Grumpy has their own green coffee buyer who travels around the world making connections with small farmers.

Even Think Coffee travels to origin to visit coffee farmers.

Jan 27, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Best not-"third wave" espresso/coffee?

Lots of local roasters get microlots. Many also do direct trade, although others use middlemen such as Coffee Shrub, and some do both. Cafe Grumpy doesn't have $10 cups. Their most expensive pourover is around $4.50. Budin might reach those prices sometimes. And sometimes if Gesha is available shops will sell it for around $7 or $8 (probably close to their cost) just so people can try it.

Jan 27, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Best not-"third wave" espresso/coffee?

First of all, espresso preparation can be highly inconsistent, so just because you went to a so-called highly regarded place doesn’t mean you received a good version of whatever coffee it was. Secondly, within third wave coffee, there is good and bad, just like anything else. Highly lauded doesn’t necessarily mean good. Thirdly, there can be defective coffee beans (called quakers) in a batch that throw off the taste of any particular cup. And finally, you can go to the best shop in the city and get one great, balanced shot and have the next shot turn out badly. If you tell the barista nicely they will generally try to make you happy. If they make you another shot and it’s still bad, you have to generally figure that they either aren’t a good barista or the shop isn’t using good coffee (although there are exceptions to this - sometimes even a great barista won’t be able to get a good shot due to weather or some other factor).

Over the fast few years, around 50 independent third wave shops have opened every year in NYC, so talent is getting diluted. Since coffee doesn’t pay all that well, it’s generally, but not completely, a younger person’s job. After a while, if they stay in coffee they end up roasting or moving into some other part of the coffee industry, so there’s a lot of turnover on the front lines. There’s never been so much potential for getting good coffee in NYC (or anywhere else for that matter), but right now everything’s in flux, and the chances of getting a bad shot at a good place are fairly high. Also, due to the Pulley Collective and evolution of the industry, many small local chains have begun roasting their own coffee, and they haven’t figured it out totally yet. Examples of this included Sweetleaf and Variety Coffee. They are getting better all the time but aren’t quite there yet.

Another factor is that many people don’t realize that in addition to being seasonal, roasted coffee is a perishable item. Once it’s roasted it should be consumed within 2 weeks, a month at the outside. And if you are drinking pre-ground coffee, it’s already lost a lot of its flavor. Coffee should be ground directly before preparation.

Best not-"third wave" espresso/coffee?

As far as I know they never did that but I’d love if I were wrong.

Jan 25, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Best not-"third wave" espresso/coffee?

Ninth Street uses a custom Dallis Bros blend. Abraço uses Stumptown.

Jan 25, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Best not-"third wave" espresso/coffee?

I never said that less modification equals better flavor. It can be just as bad at the other end of the spectrum. But it's a fact that most dark roasted coffee isn't technically specialty coffee, often has no roast date, often contains Robusta, and other ills. Mostly all you taste with dark-roasted coffee is the roast, sort of like burned toast.

Thanks for the specious comparison at the end.

Jan 25, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan
1

Best not-"third wave" espresso/coffee?

Coffee is a fruit - the seed of a coffee cherry. Traditionally coffee was dark roasted because it was low quality or old or both. The dark roast covers up those imperfections. People learned to associate dark roasts with good quality. Mistakes were made when lighter roasting first started, but if you allow yourself to think of coffee as a fruit and not a charred bean, you might find yourself enjoying some lighter roasted modern coffee.

Jan 23, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan
1

Chicken and Waffles in Brooklyn?

I'm not a fan.

Jan 23, 2015
Peter Cuce in Outer Boroughs

Best not-"third wave" espresso/coffee?

By traditional you mean dark roasted? Maybe Zibetto or I Am Coffee.

Jan 23, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Plant Love House Another Personal Thai Food Spot

I didn’t like the PLH Kao Soy at all but maybe it got better. I also thought most of the other food I had there was amateurish in execution.

Jan 23, 2015
Peter Cuce in Outer Boroughs

Buvette

I never eat meals at Buvette but I like going there either right after work or late night to sit at the bar, and have a cocktail, or some wine and cheese. Great atmosphere. I often meet cool people at the bar too.

Jan 22, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Park Slope Food Coop Members -ever have trouble with their meat?

I was considering joining the Coop recently, but the meat selection is disappointing. If it's also poor quality, that's really a shame. I think Fleishers has great prices for the quality - it's competitive with every other grass fed organic meat producer around here - and the range of products and freshness is wonderful. They also have some nice local pastured eggs and other things of that nature. I really like their tallow soap too. Honestly I think Fleishers even has a better (and oftentimes cheaper) meat selection than Whole Foods.

Jan 22, 2015
Peter Cuce in Outer Boroughs

Mei Li Wah – A Cha Siu Bao Institution; Amazing Cha Siu Bao? No…The Best In Chinatown? Probably

Try the zoo

Jan 15, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Kokum (on Lex)

Which is slightly more useful than random chance.

Jan 13, 2015
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Best Northern Thai Larb?

I tried an array of dishes and find it fairly amateurish, although the blood soup was pretty good.

Jan 05, 2015
Peter Cuce in Outer Boroughs

Where to Have Good Coffee in Midtown

This is an old thread and that's not remotely near midtown.

Dec 27, 2014
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Chengdu Heaven vs Little Pepper?

I love Chengdu Heaven for what it is, and the ability to get food from other places simultaneously, but nothing there is as good as Little Pepper. CH does have a few dishes you can't find at LP.

Dec 25, 2014
Peter Cuce in Outer Boroughs
1

Chinese dinner (NOT dim sum) in Sunset Park - who's good these days?

Yunnan Flavor Garden is one of my favorite Chinese spots, especially on a cold night. Their hot and sour wontons are out of this world, made sour with tamarind. The wontons have beautiful thin skins. I also love the crossing bridge noodle soup and the plate of cold cured offal they call lu mein.

Dec 13, 2014
Peter Cuce in Outer Boroughs

Pete Wells's Top Ten NYC Ramen

Definitely agree on Vietnamese soups or Vietnamese food in general in NYC. There's none I'd go out of my way for. I've had some good soups at Dongbei restaurants, especially the meatball soup at Lao Dong Bei before the chef left and the blotch soup at Fu Run.
I also enjoy the crossing the bridge soup at Yunnan Flavor Garden.

Dec 13, 2014
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Pete Wells's Top Ten NYC Ramen

I think we have to signal the downhill siren on Nightingale 9. It's become thoroughly mediocre since the move.

Dec 13, 2014
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Where Best Places for Local Brews ?

In Manhattan Fool's Gold, Proletariat, Jimmy's 43, Blind Tiger, Upright Brew House are some downtown craft beer favorites that, as Silverjay says, pour local beers and do tap takeovers.

Dec 10, 2014
Peter Cuce in Outer Boroughs

Soba-ya or SobaKoh?

Sobaya used to be better. In any case, stick to small dishes or soba - their donburi are lame.

Dec 09, 2014
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Soup dumplings in Brooklyn?

I think there’s a place in Bay Ridge or thereabouts called Shanghai Dumpling or somesuch, but I’ve never been.

Dec 01, 2014
Peter Cuce in Outer Boroughs

Don't shoot me... looking for red-sauce Italian and "NY Chinese"

I don’t consider the Congees to be Americanized Chinese either. They are both solid Cantonese restaurants.

Dec 01, 2014
Peter Cuce in Manhattan

Don't shoot me... looking for red-sauce Italian and "NY Chinese"

Nearly every Chinese restaurant has sweet and sour pork, even Szechuan Gourmet, but I wouldn’t recommend you try it there. It’s terrible. If this guy wants old-school NY style Chinese, Noodletown is not the place.

Dec 01, 2014
Peter Cuce in Manhattan