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favorite Fish&Chips these days? here are mine; looking for more...

thanks - i will check out the one on Atlantic sometime when i am over there (i might hike there from Manhattan to burn the calories i'll consume :)

1 day ago
Simon in Manhattan

dining solo in philly

Il Pittore, Pub&Kitchen, The Dandelion

Apr 24, 2015
Simon in Philadelphia

favorite Fish&Chips these days? here are mine; looking for more...

hi Ziggy...i tried the Cull&Pistol fish&chips -- i liked the fish very much - actually didn't like the chips as they were pretty generic skinny fries, but the fish is my priority in any case...thanks for the rec as i liked the meal overall and the staff are very nice, as are the wines by the glass...cheers...

Apr 24, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

Slow Cooker Chicken Soup

Apr 24, 2015
Simon in Recipes

Slow Cooker Chicken Soup

Apr 24, 2015
Simon in Recipes

Slow Cooker Chicken Soup

Apr 24, 2015
Simon in Recipes

Slow Cooker Chicken Soup

Apr 24, 2015
Simon in Recipes

Slow Cooker Chicken Soup

Apr 24, 2015
Simon in Recipes

stellar meal at Black Tree

i like the food at Black Tree a lot -- have had 3 or 4 meals there...the ramen is surprisingly delicious, and has had a deep-flavored broth of whatever the animal of the week is...interesting menu rotation, and the staff are cheerful enough...

However i can't disagree strongly enough with your description of the place as "anti-hipster" -- i think it's painfully pretentious: their policy is that there are no changes whatsoever to dishes, even just something as simple as leaving the mayo off a sandwich (when i made this very easy request, i was informed that there is so much work into the exact flavor combination of each sandwich that even subtracting mayo would ruin the chef's creation -- please, i hate mayo, and the chef is good but this is a sandwich, not a major masterpiece -- this kind of attitude toward patrons makes me quite angry)...they also blast the music at deafening level (which is the main reason i sometimes skip the place even when the animal-of-the-week is to my liking).

I want to keep going there, but i wish they'd turn down both the tunes and the attitude...

Apr 22, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

Soft shell crab season!

Thanks for reminding me about The Clam -- i liked it very much the two times i went last year but it somehow slipped off my radar...will return there for crabs one day soon

Apr 22, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

Rubirosa or Arturo’s

i've been to Rubirosa 2 times (neither time for pizza) -- while the food was fine, service was rude both times, and one of the times verged on some of the nastiest uncalled-for hipster snottiness i've witnessed in any of the 5 Boroughs...you may get some good food there and maybe better service, but for me personally, it falls into the never-again category...

Arturo's is decent old-school pizza and i want to like the place more, but i wouldn't put it on a 2-day short-list...i haven't been there in 3+ yrs since i tend to order thin-crust whole-grain delivery from Posto (2nd Ave) and that fills my pizza quotient in the city...

i like the Bar Pitti suggestion...it's one of my favs, and might be great for your Monday lunch (but know it's cash-only and can get crowded esp on sunny days when paparazzi crowd the sidewalk)...order off the chalkboard of specials...very reasonably priced...

Giorgione might be a fun choice for the Sunday dinner...very good risotto, solid pizza, a raw bar, and i'd call it a good neighborhood jt, esp if your idea of a neighborhood jt includes regulars like Michael Stipe and John Slattery and a near the Hudson River locale...it doesn't get much press or raves here, but i think it's a special place...

Another very neighborhood option for pasta is Malatesta - i have not been there in a long while but the spaghetti alla chitarra and the grilled squid salad are ultra-reasonably priced and it's a WV fav of many...

Have a nice trip and please report back...

Apr 21, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

Barbounia's Lamb Terracotta

I'm not a fan of Barbounia but i'm glad you had some tasty lamb...as for alternative venues for lamb dishes when you return, there are many you might like:

-- Turkish Kitchen has several good lamb dishes
-- Georgian lamb clay pot dishes at either Oda House or Old Tbilisi Garden
-- Bar Pitti occassionally has a braised lamb shank called Stinco Agnello on the chalkboard
-- head to Astoria for some Greek places where the food will be better and price lower than Barbounia: Kopiaste had been praised here for its meat dishes...
-- but best yet: before your next trip post something w/ a headline like: "Favorite Lamb Dishes?" and you'll get 10+ (20+?) replies...(and/or do a search for the same)

:)

Apr 21, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

Phoenix Garden (E. 40th) - nice first visit

plf515 -- interestingly, those two dishes are two that we haven't yet tried there (only 3 visits so far), but we considered ordering them on our last visit and they were already on our hit-list/to-try-in-future-list...thanks for the recs...

Apr 18, 2015
Simon in Manhattan
1

My Manhattan Dream Begins Tomorrow!

since you are in Tribeca, consider Gotan Cafe for a casual sandwich/brunch/coffee...very pleasant setting and good food...

Also, happy to see Bar Pitti on the list -- one of my favorites (i recommend ordering mainly from the chalkboard of specials, and bear in mind it's cash only)

Apr 14, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

Georgian wines in Manhattan

Astor Wines has Pheasant's Tears Saperavi and Rkatseteli and a few others

Apr 14, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

Best Grand Sichuan

what do you like these days from GS St Marks?...i've grown tired of Legend, and i could return to GS as delivery option but the last few times (10+ months ago) were very weak...actually don't have a UnSq/Gramercy Chinese delivery option that i like at all these days...

Apr 10, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

Phoenix Garden (E. 40th) - nice first visit

hi...i've seen this place mentioned here over the years once in a while, but never gave it too much notice either because i was laser-focused on the many Sichuan options and/or because i somehow had confused it w/ Peking Park...

Anyway, i went there tonight early-eve w/ my Guangdong-born/Cantonese-speaking gf, mainly because we were in the area and craving Cantonese cuisine...

Yum...a few thoughts:

-- because of the East-East 40th location, previous CH posts (as well as the actual drab entryway) had led me to think it was a bare-bones dive: actually it's a pleasant vibe w/ dark wood tables and sweet staff and......a jazz duo (Friday at least -- upright bass and keyboardist)...at least 50% Chinese customers including some tradtional banquetting tables...all in all, a good vibe

-- lobster w/ ginger and scallion...delicious...much better than Chinatown versions i've tried recently at Cafe HK, etc

-- fried fish dumplings -- highly recommended: delicate dumpling wrapper, large pieces of fish (not just paste)

-- and 3+ other dishes that worked just fine...duck, winter melon soup, snow pea leaves...

-- Oh, how could i forget: it's BYOB, no corkage...

This was just a first visit, but am sure to retry, because of the combo a) passes muster w/ my very particular Guangdong-born gf, b) BYOB, and c) fine lobster -- all guarantee a return...

Interested to here other thoughts, fav dishes, etc...

Apr 10, 2015
Simon in Manhattan
1

A Tale of Two Sittings: Ma Peche v. Oda House

howdini, thanks for the detailed reports...

I've been to Oda House twice for food just after they opened (quite a while ago), and a couple times just for a glass of wine at the bar...i like the staff and the wine, but wasn't impressed by the food: the pxali trio i had there ages ago was flatout awful, and the other dishes just ok...but i'll try it again after your report (and since the staff/owners seem quite nice, and i love Georgian food, i want it to succeed).

Curious if you've tried Old Tbilisi Garden (the main rival for Georgian dishes in downtown Manhattan) -- there are several dishes there i love (excellent lamb khinkali, the imeruli salad, very good pxali, and the chicken kebabs) but i've had some uneven dishes there and some of their pricing is silly (18 bucks for a bit of bland lobio) and the space/vibe can sometimes feel off...(the Oda House space is much more cozy)

Apr 09, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

Question re: Tapas and Spanish food generally

hi Zin...i like Despana for a late-afternoon snack: is it great tapas? no, but they have some nice hams and cheeses and the big advantadge is that you can buy a bottle of wine from their wine store (interesting selection of hard to find Spanish wines) and open it and drink it in the cafe...

I disliked Toro on my one visit, and i never liked Boqueria as much as many other hounds do...Tia Pol used to have a suckling pig special that i liked, but i don't love the place overall...Txikito has tasty lamb meatballs, but a very weak wine-by-the-glass selection when i was there last (2 yrs ago?)...El Quinto Pino is a cute place, and used to have Castellroig rose by the glass...

And to add to the confusion, consider La Nacional...i've not been there in a couple years but i've meaning to go back and enjoyed it in the past...it's in the downstairs of the a Spanish national society and has an authentic vibe...

Apr 06, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

Lakruwana Sri Lankan in S.I. - Tips for First-Timers?

Hi...planning on taking the ferry over from Manhattan and trying Lakruwana...

-- is it still the fav option for Sri Lankan there?

-- from maps, it seems pretty walkable from the ferry...any route recommended (i.e. scenic or other stores on the way)?

-- should we expect a long wait for weekend buffet?

Thanks in advance...

Apr 05, 2015
Simon in Outer Boroughs

Vic's in NoHo

i had a snack and drink there today -- a) the wine list is peculiar in a way i find awesome, and b) the salads i tried were so over-drenched in vinegar, i was embarassed for the chef...one on hand, i like the ingredients and wines they are sourcing, but the lack of skill in the kitchen made me once again feel soured (no pun intended) on NYC restaurants in general...

Apr 01, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

Alternative to Ushiwakamaru?

I'd also been going to Ushi for 10+ yrs...i hope Hideo-san finds a new space...and, here's a suggestion for something in the meantime:

while it's not a sushi place, your daughter might enjoy Sobakoh - she can watch the very charming/eccentric owner make the soba in the window, they do have pressed sushi on the menu as a starter/special, and the cold inaka soba is the best i've ever had outside of Japan...cheers...

Apr 01, 2015
Simon in Manhattan
1

Alternative to Ushiwakamaru?

excellent question...i don't have an answer but i'm interested in hearing replies...

Mar 31, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

Georgian wine

i love Georgian wine...Pheasant's Tears Shavkapito (a dry earthy red) and Rkatseteli (dry, amber) are in my regular rotation at home (available in NYC at Astor Wines, though i think i bought up the last of their Shavkapito recently and they currently only Saperavi, which is similar/same-grape as Italian Primitivo)

Mar 29, 2015
Simon in Wine

favorite Fish&Chips these days? here are mine; looking for more...

thanks...i remember hearing about Molly's Fish&Chips in the past but i somehow never made it there...i'll try it :)

Mar 29, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

favorite Fish&Chips these days? here are mine; looking for more...

i love the falafel Scotch Eggs at Eastwood too...

i'll try the Cull and Pistol fish&chips...i've only been there once (for oysters) and liked it fine...

Mar 28, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

favorite Fish&Chips these days? here are mine; looking for more...

Haven't been there in 7+ years...was never a big fan of the place overall but i can give it new try :)

Mar 27, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

favorite Fish&Chips these days? here are mine; looking for more...

about 3 years ago, i peeked in there when i was hungry and with someone who was also hungry -- but a) there was nowhere to sit and we didn't feel like inhaling fish&chips standing up, and, b) the place smelled horrible, like the inside of a rancid oil tub...

Have heard the fish&chips are good though, but haven't been tempted to return since...

Mar 27, 2015
Simon in Manhattan

The Upper West Side

alas, for your sake, i hope things have improved since i lived on 68th/CPW for 6 months in 2008/2009...i found the dining options bizarrely grim then, as i still do when i have to meet friends up there...that said, here are some thoughts:

-- when i lived there, Cafe Ronda was my least-worst sometimes-good Spanish comfort food option...but when i walked by recently it seems they've closed and are reimagining the place under diff vibe...

-- there is a sushi place on W.72nd that's been recommended here that sounds promising...blanking on the name...

-- i despise Kefi, airplane food version of Greek food the one time i tried it inhouse, and merely mediocre when eaten 2+ times as delivery to a friend's place...lived on Rhodos as a child, so maybe my standards are too high...

-- haven't been to the Grand Sichuan in W. 70's enough times to recommend but might be a delivery option...

-- Nice Matin -- i used to like this place for brunch, tuna tartar, bar dining, salads, et al...this might be a winner, but i haven't been in a while...

If all else fails, either cook fab meals at home or head to Harlem for Senegalese food :)

Mar 27, 2015
Simon in Manhattan
1

favorite Fish&Chips these days? here are mine; looking for more...

i'm actually more focused on the fish than the chips, but these are my current favs:

-- Eastwood -- this cafe/bar on E. Broadway serves a fun combo of fish&chips, Israeli salads/hummus/falafel, and brunch...one of my new favorite places...fish is very lightly battered and perfect the 5+ times i've tried it...they get bonus pts in my book for offering a fish w/o the chips option, allowing one to create mini-feasts...(sidenote: their Israeli fried cauliflower is yummy too...wine selection nice too)

-- The Shakespeare (39th St)...pricey but nice British-style pub w/ friendly professional staff and solid fish&chips (soups good too)...slightly lame that they limit the kitchen offerings in late-afternoon (it's a pub,right??) but otherwise a fine place...

-- Dead Rabbit -- i remember them as yummy but it was over a year ago and i need to return...

I've enjoyed the Breslin version fine but the hipster-as-aspiring-yuppie/yuppie-as-aspiring-hipster attitude of the place bugs me a bit...

All suggestions welcome (though downtown is preferable)...cheers...

Mar 27, 2015
Simon in Manhattan