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Mangita's Profile

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Grumpy Old Man - Staubitz Guy is really irritating

I have known him for years. He is really a nice guy- always a bit of a character and now just getting a bit elderly. So, since we are all going to eventually become a bit elderly and understanding that with that sometimes comes a hardening of some traits I suggest you not worry too much about his "aggressive" speaking his mind about the pancetta. In Brooklyn I like to think we are a bit more open to looking at each other as individuals and in a less utilitarian manner than in Manhattan- at least that was what I have always liked about Brooklyn. BUT, was the meat good?? Paisanos, for example, is ok, but the quality no where near Stuabitz

Apr 17, 2014
Mangita in Outer Boroughs

Any soft shell sightings in Philly?

Yes, I posted that. Le Virtu had a special softshell crab appetizer (very generous portion) that was light and simply a yummy introduction to the short season that are soft shell crabs. If they offer this definitely get it! But that's what makes them so special, right? Just once a year!

Apr 16, 2014
Mangita in Philadelphia
1

Brooklynite loving Philly

Thank you to all. I will and can't wait!!! And visit us in Brooklyn as well!

Apr 16, 2014
Mangita in Philadelphia

Brooklynite loving Philly

Living in Brooklyn/NYC of course I can always eat wonderful food but I love going to other cities to experience the different "takes" each city has on its restaurant scene. Well, Philly is amazing. I dined at Marigold and Le Virtu. Marigold did remind me quite a bit of Chicago's Alinea (where I understand the chef worked) and from the lobster soup with sweet bubbles playing off against the intense lobster liquid to a buttery filet Mignon and many in between courses, some with Asian accents, the service and food were outstanding. Added to that it is a BYOB and Marigold comes out to well less than half the price of an Alinea or equivalent in NYC. Le Virtu was truly a virtue of excellence- friendly, family feel, again unbelievably reasonably priced, with amazing homemade pastas, , taccozelle style pasta with homemade sausage, porcini, truffles, saffron, and perhpas the most interesting "gnocchi" dish I have ever sampled. Soup with farro and chestnuts, a special soft-shell crab appetizers and many other dishes. A superb abruzze based Italian meal- a style not often found in the USA. For Sunday brunch we went to Amis and had another fabulous meal- in fact I have never had a brunch quite like this. From the great mixed bread basket to an outstanding egg salad with charred scallion brucetta, airy polenta pancakes with pecans and a golden raisins maple syrup butter to meltingly soft scrambled eggs with roasted mushrooms, red onion and pecorino this was a memorable brunch. We also went to Baby ice cream and the adjacent pizza place while walking around one afternoon and enjoyed the Italian market. Luckily for me my sister and brotherinlaw recently moved to Philly and I have discovered the joy of a 90 minute amtrak ride that makes it easy for me to pop into Philly for a quick visit and opportunity to sample more of your city's culinary joys! Anyone who thinks Philadelphia can't hold its own to NYC should have their taste buds checked! Can't wait to return.

Eli Kulp: "People in New York just don't go to Philadelphia"

Just 90 minutes by train and I am going to enjoy the food for sure! I love different takes on food and how it is expressed in different cities. We should be able to appreciate it all- it would be boring otherwise!

Apr 10, 2014
Mangita in Philadelphia
1

Eli Kulp: "People in New York just don't go to Philadelphia"

I am going to Philadelphia tomorrow! And I am from NY (Brooklyn really)

Apr 09, 2014
Mangita in Philadelphia

Le Cottage in St. Martin

Hi

Thanks for the review. Some more thoughts about where to eat in St. Martin. I go to SXM often and have two places I truly consistently enjoy. One is Bistro Caribe in Grande Case. They have the best lobster thermidor on the island. The sauce is just the correct balance of cheese, cream and I suppose its brandy or cognac. Best of all it doesn't overwhelm the always sweet, never dry Caribbean lobster. Caribbean lobster easily becomes dried out and I appreciate they never over cook it.Everything else on the menu is equally and consistently wonderful. The other place I love is Le T Bouchon in Cul de Sac- close by to Grande Case. The owner, Mo Mo, provides an ever evolving menu that blends accents of French with the Caribbean in a very modern (in the best sense) way. No Caesar salads or onion soup. The dishes are inventive and, as a rule, excellent. We were there a few days ago and I had cold sweetbreads in a minty aspic with chutney. Very different and excellent and then poached eggs with pearled onions and mushrooms in an intense wine sauce- truly fabulous. My husband had a glass "pot" of snails in a garlicky cream sauce with mushrooms (unbelievably flavorful) and an very good veal shank (off the bone) glazed with orange and honey that while tasting of those flavors but not sweet at all. Pear sorbet profiteroles ended this meal. Pastry was light, and pear sorbet was like biting into a ripe juicy pear. Also note the markups on the wines and champagnes are not outrageous. While dinner was not cheap it was a great value and fit for foodies. His prices are in dollars.

Best Scones In NY?

Bakeri in Williamsburg- everything they make is exquisite including the scones and biscuits! Here's the website: http://bakeribrooklyn.com

Feb 26, 2013
Mangita in Outer Boroughs

Best Sushi in Brooklyn

I love 1 or 8 and think it one of the most versatile Japanese restaurants in the city. Impeccable sushi but creative non-sushi modern Japanese entrees as well, like duck two ways. Drinks are wonderful and the sake selection is first rate. If you do not know sake let the man who is clearly the front of the house (I can't remember his name) guide you. If you have not dined at 1 or 8 do so - you are missing out!

Dec 29, 2012
Mangita in Outer Boroughs

Runner & Stone

Yes, I did the first weekend they opened for dinner. Definitely a nice addition to the Brooklyn dining scene as well as to what has been a fairly lonely stretch in the Gowanus area. I have foggy post-xmas dinner brain so this won't be the best description of the food but here's what I remember:
I recommend reservations as it was already fairly crowded. There is a nice long bar in the front and some high tables with high stools/chairs. A little past that front area is another small dining area with standard tables and chairs and a lovely dining area downstairs. And then there is what i would call "Siberia"- it is a little hall leading to the kitchen with two tall two-tops. That's where the manager - a very polished and pleasant fellow, seated us even though it was a 7:30 reservation made a few days before the opening AND there were other empty tables. My husband was immediately unhappy and basically told me he would leave if they didn't switch our table. We spoke to the polished manager who told us something about the other tables being taken blah blah and he would comp us drinks. All very nice but once he left my spouse remained very disgruntled and I knew this would not work. The area really does have a strange, claustrophobic feel as there are no windows or view of any sort except for the kitchen entry. Very unappealing! So, after a bit more discussion he graciously moved us downstairs and from there we proceeded to truly enjoy our meal.

The bread, as Cookbook Addict says, is truly amazing: buckwheat, baguette and a few others. True to the flavors of the grain used but not heavy at all as in the case of the buckwheat.

We each had a salad- I had an apple panzanella with apples and chestnuts dressing- mostly bright greens with little chunks of apples, more of that wonderful bread and a few tiny chunks of chestnut. Lovely. My husband's salad was also very good but post-xmas brain keeps me from remembering exactly what it was and he consumed it rather quickly (and with a good deal of relish) without wanting to really share.
I had braided cod ravioli kale pesto, citrus gremolata which was amazing- a wonderfully flavorful gremolata with just the right notes of citrus to complement the cod and its well constructed casing. I would eat it again. My husband's braised lamb breast in Moroccan spices and salsify was equally clean, flavorful and well-balanced. The portions were good as well. I looked around at other diners and everything looked quite yummy and all seemed happy with their meals. Dessert was ok but not special and the waiter actually asked if we had suggestions about it. Drinks nicely mixed and overall a really great meal.
We had 3 drinks and were compd for them all!!!! I was a bit surprised as they did move us- so that was much appreciated and said to me these people really want to do it right. Considering this was only their second night open the kitchen ran smoothly and wait staff already seemed as if they were on the floor for years not days. Impressive! The manager apologized to us yet again before we left and my husband walked out saying he enjoyed his meal and dining experience and would return soon. That is saying something since often when a meal starts out poorly the whole experience is tainted. Not so at Stone & Runner. Try it, I think you will be pleased!

Dec 26, 2012
Mangita in Outer Boroughs

quality cheese shops in brooklyn

I love Blue Apron in Park Slope (Union St on 7th Avenue). Prices are what you would expect for quality cheese but the owners are always on the premises and they have selected their cheeses with great care, not only for variety but seasonality and wonderful craftsmanship. The staff is well-trained and able to guide you towards cheeses that will interest you.

Oct 02, 2012
Mangita in Outer Boroughs

"Creative Ethnic"

Who cares who prepares the food as long as it is good? And what is authenticity anyway? All things change and evolve and that's what makes life and food interesting. If you want classic "fill in the blank" cuisine then go to that type of restaurant. If you are in the mood for a different take on a cuisine that's fine too. I like it all as long as it is well-prepared and tastes good. I don't think someone of Asian decent should only cook Asian (which is bizarre to say as Japanese, for example, is not like Thai) any more than I think a Caucasian should only cook "Caucasian" (which, last time I checked is not a style of cooking). Get over all this "racial"/ "ethnic" determinism and focus on the food.

Aug 08, 2012
Mangita in Manhattan

St Martin- Restaurant Itinerary help please!!

Don Camillo is closed

St Martin- Restaurant Itinerary help please!!

The other nice bakery is a few shops down from Serafina in Marigot is Le Sucrier. Smaller than the larger Serafina and I think a bit better.
If you want to go to a restaurant that's more "local" try le Poulet - it is near Orleans and is a bit of a trip at night. I totally agree about Le ti Bouchon and also recommend So e Luna in Mt Vernon (near Grand Case) beautiful and romantic and if you want to eat a later lunch with no need to later eat dinner go to Bacchus. Amazing french food!!!!
If you are staying in TB we like Plum beach (baie aux prunes) - no concessions, bring a towel or your own chairs and just enjoy the silence.

St. Martin: Marie Antoinette does Lunch at "Bacchus"

Sounds yummy! Looking forward to your report. Yes, Ti Bouchon's cooking has elevated itself since last year

St. Martin: Marie Antoinette does Lunch at "Bacchus"

Oh, I see the name of the pizza place now. I will try it next time I am there. Is it open at night?

St. Martin: Marie Antoinette does Lunch at "Bacchus"

Actually, the lunch was about $178 (with a tip)- not bad! Where is this pizza place in Cul de Sac?

Kosher in St Maarin, St Thomas, San Juan, Tortola or Antigua?

Good luck and enjoy your trip!

Kosher in St Maarin, St Thomas, San Juan, Tortola or Antigua?

There is now a Chabad on St. Maarten and for assistance on Kosher food you can contact: Kosher@jewishsxm.com and info@jewishsxm.com and check out: www.jewishsxm.com
I hope this helps. I am sure they will know the veggie options as well. I only know of Top Carrot in Simpson Bay but I assume you want something better than a juice bar. Hope this helps.

St. Martin: Marie Antoinette does Lunch at "Bacchus"

Hello

I like Estimanet (creative) and Bistro Carib (classic and reliably French and comforting) in Grande Case. I really enjoy Ti Bouchon in Cul de Sac run by the eccentric but fun and dedicated to his cuisine "Mo Mo", Le Sucrier bakeries in Cole Bay and Marigot and Hilma's Windsor Castle in Simpson Bay (it is a trailer) for Johnny cakes and codfish cakes. I also enjoy Palm Beach (one of the beaches that's on Orient) where if you buy lunch, the chairs and umbrellas are "free." The food is quite good and the beach area a bit less crowded than the rest of Orient. I wanted to, but did not get to the Karakter Beach Bar in Simpson Bay- go towards Mary Boon's. I hear good things about it for lunch and also heard Sol e Lune in Cul de Sac is very good too (dinner). Here is something Marie and I really love: Dutch yogurt. It is fabulous. Buy and try any and all Dutch yogurt - it is a revelation. You can find these in the Grand Marche on the Dutch side near Port de Plasaince so not too far outside of Marigot. But I will be honest: I go to SXM all the time but I NEED to find some new places! That was why I was so excited by Bacchus. Let me know if you find anything new. I am glad you enjoyed my little story about Bacchus- it really was fabulous! Will you be returning to Bacchus on this trip? Enjoy!

St. Martin: Marie Antoinette does Lunch at "Bacchus"

Here is my review of Bacchus in St. Martin (in Hope Estate outside of Grand Case- it is only open for lunch)

Marie Antoinette does Lunch

Here, Oh Best Beloved is the story of how Marie Antoinette, her head still securely fastened to her neck, had lunch today. Her place of choice: Bacchus, a fabulous restaurant, cum wine cave, cum provisioner of delicacies, delightful to both the mouth and eye. At 1:00 sharp, dressed in her finest white shorts, pretty yellow (fairly revealing) yellow cotton tunic shirt, hair up (but still curling charmingly around her face) and decked out in some tasteful jewelry, she sauntered into Bacchus with her regal Mami in tow. They were respectfully ushered to a table where they were immediately served a special, complimentary elixir comprised of champagne, a dash of jerez and a basil infusion. Yummy! I mean, delightful. Menus proffered, they perused the offerings with great enthusiasm and anticipation. Should Marie choose the scallops seared to perfection and topped with fois gras? No, she worried, they might not be dry packed scallops and that would offend her fussy palate. Should she select the filet mignon with morels imported from Paris? No, her Mami opted for that and besides she thought it best to stay away from mother cow- at least for the day. How about the house made raviolis stuffed with fois gras topped with shaved truffles, also directly imported from France. “No,” she said, wrinkling her nose, “I just had lobster pasta last night and how much pasta can I eat?” Instead, she settled on sharing an assiette of antipasti (escargot, blini with caviar, white asparagus, fresh anchovies, olives, iberico ham with melon and all manner of delicacies) followed by pig’s trotter stuffed with fois gras (the bones conveniently removed) served on a bed of wild mushrooms with beautiful pillows of potatoes that strangely resembled tater tots but whose taste bore no resemblance to an item Marie would never permit pass her lips. The Mami’s meal was accompanied by a glass of rose champagne, but Marie opted for a glass of excellent Bordeaux. The meal was so stupendous that Marie ate it all. When the waiter, after inquiring solicitously if all had met their expectations (“Oh yes,” they cried in unison) had cleared away their plates, he quickly returned with a tray of pastries. Now up until that point Marie had convinced herself she could not eat another bite, but at the sight of those delectable morsels she quickly changed her mind. Her eyes lit upon a charmingly presented raspberry mousse confection. “An excellent choice, your Majesty,” assured the waiter. “Two spoons,” if you don’t mind, I will share this with my Mami.” “Your wish is my command,” intoned the waiter, “coffee after?” “Why, of course,” agreed Marie, “How else to end such a sumptuous meal?” With that the waiter respectfully left the two ladies to twiddle their thumbs for no more than a few minutes and returned with the dessert and even an extra confection, on the house! After blissfully devouring what Marie’s Mami declared to be one of the yummiest desserts ever, coffee was served and the meal was complete by 3:12 in the afternoon: a mere 2 hours and 12 minutes from when they sat down. The check was placed on the table, a credit card swiftly whipped out of Marie’s bag and accepted and the bill was settled. I won’t tell you Oh Best Beloved, how much this cost because you might choke. But what I can reveal is the answer to the mystery that has haunted historians for hundred of years. When Marie Antoinette was brought to the scaffold, her head placed on the block waiting for the guillotine to fall, a small smile crossed her face and it seemed to the crowd that she licked her lips. And here, Oh My Best Beloved, is what she was thinking: she was remembering that meal at Bacchus!

Heading to St Martin!! What's new there

We love Le Ti Bouchon in Cul de Sac. We had a filet with fois- excellent and great desserts Very reasonable by SXM standards and he gives the same price whether you pay in Euro or dollars. The owner of this little gem is "Mou Mou" who is French been on the island for decades, loves his customer and is a bit of a character. We have been four times in the past 2 years and each time like it more. It is small, you sit outside on a veranda and is lovely.

Colonie, Friday evening?

If you like small plates that are small but substantial and reasonably priced try Traif in Williamsburg- it is fabulous

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Traif
229 S 4th St, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Jun 25, 2011
Mangita in Outer Boroughs

Bad Experience at Tacos Matamoros

Asi es la vida!

Jun 20, 2011
Mangita in Outer Boroughs

Has anyone been to Le ti Bouchon in St Martin?

has anyone been to Le Ti Bouchon in St Martin? Is it good? I am looking for some different places to go outside Grand Case. Ant suggestions???

Is meat losing its allure?

Yes, the "advent" (apt word choice as you will see) of breakfast cereal was connected to the Seventh Day Adventist Church which advocated (and still does) preparing for the second coming of Christ through getting the mind, body and soul ready - whole grains were seen as healthy hence the invention of corn flakes (Dr. Kellogg a SDA) and graham crackers( Dr. Graham also a SDA). And yes, I agree trends are cyclical. I personally like everything so I don't think I eat to much of anything. Whenever anyone "gets religion" (as in the case of Bittman) they want everyone else to convert as well.

Jun 03, 2011
Mangita in Food Media & News

Bon Appetit & Paltrow

I guess Mario was frustrated with being sidelined by FN in favor of Flay and Ray and decided he needed a little bit of glitz by his side too. I did not renew my BA or F&W and am now going to try Saveur and see how I like it.

May 29, 2011
Mangita in Food Media & News

Le Bernardin or Toxqueville this weekend?

I have been to both on a number of occasions and to both recently. The food is excellent at these two establishments. . So it does depend on what you are in the mood for. LB is very Midtown and has a clubby more corporate feel. I have always found the service excellent and not at all unfriendly. In fact, the last time I was there the waiter overheard my spouse mentioning my birthday and he brought me an extra dessert with "happy birthday" on the plate. Very sweet. The food is fabulous. Bit of course you must be in the mood for fish- you can get a few non-fish entrees but honestly there is no point if you do not want fish and it is exquisite. On the hand, Toqueville is a lovely much softer and romantic setting. The food, IMO is just as good but not focused on one specific protein the way LB is. Service at Toque is excellent too. So, it is just a matter of what you are in the mood for as far as setting and food. You can't go wrong with either. Happy eating!

May 26, 2011
Mangita in Manhattan

Bon Appetit & Paltrow

I loved Gourmet but they (its a COnde Nast pub, correct?) but they decided to go for utter mediocrity even though the Gourmet audience was actually a very loyal one- they switched me (without asking of course) to Bon App but I didn't renew. It wasn't even good bathroom reading!

May 26, 2011
Mangita in Food Media & News

Bon Appetit & Paltrow

I think that the fact that so many of us are not interested in celebrity says something about the people in charge of the media and so many other aspects of our society - they ignore the substance over empty style market and I be we are really a huge market. The reason? They all have kids they want to edge in. I live in NYC and these people and their children are everywhere!! Indeed, Paltrow is a product of the "lucky" parent segment. Of course, there are the genuine "newbies" but those are a smaller and smaller part of any field. Look at politicians, the media industry, and even better the Ivy League schools where fully 25-33% of the admittances are "legacy." As the parent of a young adult it is sad. So, when I choose to spend my money on a cooking magazine I will not support "legacy" any more. As Flourgirl rightly points out she has nothing to add- indeed, I bet many of us here have more to add to such a publication than Paltrow.

May 25, 2011
Mangita in Food Media & News