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Los Angeles family staying Midtown East between Christmas and NYE, please advise...

if you're downtown and in East Village at all, Sobakoh is amazing and your child can watch the soba being made in the glass window up front...the black cod and the cold inaka soba and the gomaae are delicious...

Bar Pitti is fun too...split a grilled fish and a pasta and some starters off the chalkboard...at off hrs it's a fine place to bring a kid...

as others have said: skip Lombardi's and Plaza Food Hall...

maybe Old Tbilisi Garden for Georgian food...the sturgeon is pricey (though tasty) but there are salads and pxali and khatchapuri and other good veggie options...

Have a great trip

Dec 15, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

W. Village recs?

i like Old Tbilisi Garden -- some items are overpriced but it can be a good deal, esp during happy hr...i like the lamb khinkali, the pxali trio, the chicken mtvadi (sp? kebabs), and the imeruli salad...satsivi good but small portion and expensive...lobio not great...

in the same area, Bar Pitti would be my other rec (cash only however)

Dec 12, 2014
Simon in Manhattan
1

Budapest - rustic/traditional? help, please

hi...NYC hounds coming to Budapest for 4 nights later this winter (after 5 nights in Vienna)...having perused most of the semi-recent posts here on Budapest, i haven't found too much that sounds to our liking...

We like: traditional, rustic, cozy...soups, stews, spices...local wine...

We hate: pretentiously-plated, experimental, foamy, formal...

Thanks in advance...

Dec 10, 2014
Simon in Europe

Bucharest and Budapest recommendations, please

any recs on where to try these fish soups?

Dec 10, 2014
Simon in Europe

Vienna in January - rustic, traditional places, non-smoking a plus

just looked through your recs: Lubin and Cantina Friulana look esp good to me - so i think i'll tentatively make those 2 of our 5 dinners, plus Poschl makes 3...then some combo of Gmoakeller, Meixner, and/or Zum Schwarzen Kameel to round out the remaining two nights, depending on locations, etc...

Cheers!

Dec 09, 2014
Simon in Europe

Vienna in January - rustic, traditional places, non-smoking a plus

hi Sturmi...thanks so much :)

Also, what do you think of Brezlg'woelb? - the atmosphere looks intriguing...

Dec 09, 2014
Simon in Europe

Vienna in January - rustic, traditional places, non-smoking a plus

also on the maybe list:
- Weinfach Vinothek e.U.
- Quell
- 3 Hacken
- Bodulo

Dec 09, 2014
Simon in Europe

Vienna in January - rustic, traditional places, non-smoking a plus

hi...we're NYC hounds with a first time 5-day trip to Vienna coming up (and Budapest after but i'll post separately)...have started reading through past posts...we're looking for rustic/traditional places (nothing modern, nothing fusiony, nothing overly fancy)...so far we have on our maybe list:
- Gasthaus Poschl
- Zum Schwarzen Kameel
- Zum Weissen Rauchfangkehrer
- Restaurant Sperl
- Gmoakeller
- Cafe Corbaci
- Phoenixhof
- Procacci

We're staying in the Neubeu/St.Ulrich area, and going to Albertina, Leopold, and Belvedere museums plus art galleries...i'm guessing our plan will usually be to eat a big breakfast at the hotel, spend a lot of the day in museums and wandering, then eat an early dinner...we're also adamant non-smokers: of the places above, i know Poschl is non-smoking -- we can deal w/ a small bit of smoke but if any of the above are known as being esp smokey, we'd want to avoid...interested mainly in traditional Austrian, but open to some regional Italian/Croatian/etc if there is a great place...we drink mainly wine, so wine bars w/ good food welcome too...we have room for 5 dinners...

Any advice most appreciated on which places might work in terms of our preferences and in concert w/ our museum schedule (i.e. for an early dinner after one of the 3 above museums, or walking distance from St Ulrich area...

Thanks in advance...

Dec 09, 2014
Simon in Europe

Restaurants to dress up at in New York?

Scarpetta might work...as would Il Mulino...but my fav place is Bar Pitti which is very casual; personally i'd just go there whether dressed up or down)

(but i'd suggest avoiding all the chavvy Batali places - Babbo is for tourists)

Dec 08, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

Now That's A Shame...

however, the gelato in the back at Veniero's is an underappreciated treat...

Dec 05, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

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

on the other hand, the decor and lighting and vibe look hellish and reminds me of everything i despised about both LA and the Nouveau Crap places in Shanghai -- i suppose if i still lived in LA now and assuming the food is as yummy as the pics suggest, it'd be a place i'd storm into to get takeout and then drive away at high speed to enjoy in my foggy nook in SM Canyon...

Dec 01, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

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

wow, just looked it up -- the yelp pics look very very good...wish it existed during my LA tenure...i lived in Santa Monica Cyn, so it would have been an easy stop to get takeout when returning from Hollywood...drat :)

Dec 01, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

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

what is the WLA one? -- as much as i love the SGV places, it's really not feasible to drive there from somewhere in western LA at dinner time (aka rush hour), which makes the SGV places somewhat less convenient than say, Flushing is to someone in downtown Manhattan...

Dec 01, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

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

interesting...thanks for the update...are the new Sichuan places in SGV or in LA proper?...

Dec 01, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

Last Minute – City Hall / Shotgun Wedding – Dinner Suggestions?

go to Bar Pitti -- tell the waiters you just got married...order off the chalkboard...i suspect that it'll be a lovely meal...congrats...

Dec 01, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

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

hi Silverlaker...i lived in LA for many years...miss the hiking and Thai food and Mexican food and dry weather in the summer...

-- as you can see from the thread, you got some debate going...re: Chinese, do you like Sichuan food? -- it's one regional Chinese that NYC does reasonably well (better than LA, i believe, unless things have changed recently)...perhaps you should go to Wu Liang Ye - it's near Rockefeller Center and while it's a Sichuan place, they have Chinese-American dishes too and the atmosphere is pleasant...the waiters (and nice manager Hermann) will instruct the kitchen to prepare anything the way you wish...

-- re: Italian, i'll let us others take up the pure Italian-American recs, but i'll rec Bar Pitti for my fav Italian in NYC...it's Tuscan, but if you get the veal meatballs and the rigatoni and other dishes you'd prob be happy and can construct a meal to your liking...(as sidenote: for Italian-American in LA -- why not just go to Dan Tana's???...it's better for that kind of food than anything here in NYC...their lobster fra diavolo and Caesar are prob the things i miss most from LA)...

Dec 01, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

Wine Pairing Suggestions? Fennel/Radish salad +tuna, followed by Gamey Ragu

Thanks for these thoughts...due to what wasn't available today at the Union Sq Greenmarket, the ad hoc first course is going to be a plate of smoked fish and watermelon radishes and cucumbers (so will go w/ either a Reisling or a Madrid DOC white i have on hand)...for the pheasant-sausage/mushroom ragu, going to go w/ an Arbois Trousseau...and w/ a cheese course might open a Priorat...cheers

Nov 29, 2014
Simon in Wine

Best roast duck and pork in Chinatown

agreed re: awful pancakes

Nov 28, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

Wine Pairing Suggestions? Fennel/Radish salad +tuna, followed by Gamey Ragu

heya...based on what's been yummiest at the Greenmarket these days, i'm thinking of cooking the following for a small dinner over the weekend:

-- salad of shaved raw fennel and watermelon radish w/ a light dressing, possibly w/ a touch of anchovy and walnuts...and along w/ this, a little side course of seared tuna w/ lemon&rock-salt...

-- a ragu of organic ground veal and/or pheasant sausage, mushrooms, thyme, sage, carrots, tomato, served over nutty wholegrain pasta...

Was thinking about going w/ some lighter reds that i like (Georgian Shavkapito, Canary Islands Fronton D'Oro, Trouseau/Poulsard from Jura) that would work w/ both courses...another option would be to go w/ a white that's powerful enough to go w/ both the fennel salad and tuna, and then follow w/ a bigger red to go w/ the gamey ragu...

All suggestions welcome...cheers...

Nov 26, 2014
Simon in Wine

Priorat Favorite pairing

i like it w/ hard cheeses and fruit...also w/ fresh lamb steaks...my usual Priorat is the Menut...because it goes so well w/ both red meat and cheese/fruit, it's a nice wine to open midway/late-into the main course (after other bottles have been consumed) because it's wine to sip on through into the cheese/dessert courses...

Nov 26, 2014
Simon in Wine

Keens Steakhouse what to get?

the ground mutton is good for a gamey ragu w/ mushrooms and herbs, served over wholegrain pasta...

Nov 26, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

Keens Steakhouse what to get?

i buy ground mutton at the Un Sq Greenmarket regularly --it's sold at a tiny stand on the NW corner/facing-north that sells sheeps yogurt/cheese/lamb...not sure which days, but i think Saturday...

Nov 26, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

Keens Steakhouse what to get?

agreed: i like the prime rib at Keens better than the steak...

And for lunch in the pub room, the fried chicken salad is yummy...

Nov 22, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

Al Bustan

i'm curious what positive things you can say about the vibe...

Nov 20, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

Al Bustan

i've liked the food, but the service is clueless and the vibe is just off...for one dinner in the city, i'd look elsewhere...

Nov 18, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

Anyone been to Kappo Masa yet?

this is even worse than i'd imagined: the risotto looks like CheezWhiz...reminds me of the restaurant scenes in Terry Gilliam's "Brazil" -- i actually feel sorry for Masa being part of this...

Nov 17, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

Weighing Nakazawa vs Ichimura

Glad you enjoyed...i've not been there in a little while -- i went there obsessively for while (after foodwhisperer rec'd it to me here) when they were in their early days...the times i went there after the NYTimes review, i wasn't as thrilled so it's fallen out of rotation, but i'm happy to hear you had a great meal...

Nov 17, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

Anyone been to Kappo Masa yet?

not been, but i'd be very surprised if it was worthwhile...i've never been to Masa here but i went when it was Ginza Sushiko in Beverly Hills and i've to Bar Masa which i thought was a horrible tacky scam -- i'd bet that Kappo Masa is along the lines of Bar Masa (a way to cash in on the name by charging top prices for mediocre food slapped w/ a brand) but i'd be happy to learn otherwise

Nov 16, 2014
Simon in Manhattan

Wine with lamb curry?

i like all the Gerzurtraminer, Pinot Gris, and Reisling suggestions...a Georgian amber Rkatsetili or some Eastern European orange wines might work too...and if you want to try a red i might go w/ a Moroccan blend or lighter side Sicilian...

Nov 16, 2014
Simon in Wine

Shu Han Ju - New Szechuan at 6th Ave. and 11th St.

i'll survive :)

Nov 08, 2014
Simon in Manhattan