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Wolfgang's Creamed Spinach - Help with Copycat Recipe

I moved away from NYC almost two years ago, but I still dream about the creamed spinach at Wolfgang's Steakhouse. This may seem strange if you haven't had it.

I was hoping someone on this board may have had it and may be able to recommend a similar recipe to complete my Easter dinner on Sunday. The server once told me that there isn't any butter in it, which I find shocking (especially considering how their steaks are prepared!), but I find that it almost has a chicken stock-like flavor that really gives it some depth in addition to the sublime richness. Any ideas?

1 day ago
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Help Me Plan Eating Adventures in SF

SF hounds, thank you so much for your advice. I will be leaving on the 4th, so no need to worry about dinner that night. On a related note, we're arriving late on the 30th -- any suggestions for good late night eats?

Mr. Nook doesn't dislike italian, he just never craves it. Also, the point about heavy, red sauce italian is a good one -- it reminds me that he enjoyed Del Posto on our last visit. If SF does it well, I am happy to do that. Any places in particular we should check out?

Re: Tasting Menu, are there any super outstanding restaurants that we could hit for lunch instead for a better price? I only ask because for instance in NY, some people say that Eleven Madison Park is lovelier at lunch -- this may help the budget go a longer way.

I made a reservation for Plum (I had seen it come up in some other threads). I managed to track down a couple of sample menus, and it seems yummy.

Re: Dim Sum -- haha, sounds familiar (there is no good dim sum to be found in Manhattan, blah, blah, blah). We'll probably stick to SF proper, thanks for the suggestions.

Re: Oysters -- an oyster crawl is a fantastic idea, especially for a late afternoon snack. Thanks for providing hours, it's very helpful.

I have never had Burmese -- this is probably a great option!

Again, many thanks. Your responses have really made my day and have aleviated some of my anxiety.

Jun 22, 2011
IntrepidNook in San Francisco Bay Area

Help Me Plan Eating Adventures in SF

I am looking for some insight for an upcoming trip to SF (my first). I have perused the board, but probably not as much as I should (please don't hate me). Coming from NY, I read a couple SF vs. NY threads. I will be in SF with my husband the evening of June 30 to July 4.

We're staying at the Omni San Francisco (500 California Street) and we're looking for a range of options. Unfortuantely, I have been insanely swamped with work and haven't been able to research and make reservations like I normally do.

A bit about our eating preferences: we both love great food (shocker) and are pretty easy. My husband doesn't love Italian (although he's happy enough to indulge me) or Indian.

Specifically, I would love recommendations for the following:

- Dim Sum
- Oysters
- mid-range options (dinner mains between 20-30, let's say, maybe including a seafood restaurant)
- a more "splurgish" restaurant with a tasting menu at around $75 pre-tax, pre-tip (give or take)
- sushi recommendation (outstanding sushi is very expensive in NY -- is the same true in SF? It's difficult to give a budget without knowing the norm, but maybe $60 per person including tax and tip?)
- any outstanding places you would urge me not to miss (including casual eats)

In terms of ambiance/mood, I am not overly picky -- I just appreciate good food. We generally steer away from stuffy places.

All my price ranges exclude alcohol. I acknowledge that I am being very broad and vague, and haven't done my homework. Please take pity on an overworked soul in desparate need of a great vacation. Extra points for restaurants that I have a shot of getting into on this short notice. Many thanks in advance!

Jun 22, 2011
IntrepidNook in San Francisco Bay Area

STEER CLEAR LIST - Worst Meal You've Had in the Last Six Months

I'll bite. Matsuri. Hands down. Sushi was terrible -- the texture of a very simple roll was way off, both in terms of the fish and the rice. Calamari was some of the worst deep frying I had ever had -- I don't know what happened to the temperature, but it was so soggy it just fell apart. It's pathetic when the salad is the only decent dish out of 5 or so.

I had a BBE coupon for 30%, which made me fill a tinge better about the debacle, but still... Too bad because the room is actually pretty neat.

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Matsuri
369 West 16th Street, New York, NY 10011

Jun 01, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Law school student studying for Bar seeks CHEAP EATS near NYU

Cafe Asean (http://www.cafeasean.com/) does take out. It's not super cheap, but it may be a good place to mix it up once in a while.

All the best on your exam.

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Cafe Asean
117 W 10th St, New York, NY 10011

May 26, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Yuba Restaurant – A New Generation of Chefs and Excellent Innovative Japanese in the East Village

I agree. If I were to compare the effect to something familiar, I would say that it's similar to bean curd, layered, but perhaps a little more texturally robust, if that makes sense.

May 09, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Yuba Restaurant – A New Generation of Chefs and Excellent Innovative Japanese in the East Village

I returned to Yuba on Saturday for a light dinner. We opted for the 12 piece nigiri set ($55). IIRC, I the 18 piece nigiri set is $80. We also really enjoyed a layered yuba with mushrooms appetizer (I don't see it on the online menu) -- it was delicious.

Out of curiosity I asked about their lunch menu and it sounds like they have a special lunch menu with sets that is not on their website with very reasonable prices.

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Yuba
105 E 9th St, New York, NY 10003

May 09, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Dinner Tonight

I called to make a reservation a few days ago and they told me the outdoor seating was first-come-first-served and that I could not reserve such seating. I hope you've had better luck, because it would be great to be able to reserve it in advance.

Apr 30, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Yuba Restaurant – A New Generation of Chefs and Excellent Innovative Japanese in the East Village

The Omakase and sets are not listed on the online menu. If I recall, there are three Omakase Options:$ [don't remember the $], $60, and $100. We had the $60 Omakase and ordered several other dishes. We received probably about 6 pieces of [delicious!] nigiri. I don't remember the prices of the sushi sets, but I remember thinking the next day that we would probably go that route next time. Sorry this isn't very helpful (especially to you, who is always so very helpful!).

Apr 28, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Yuba Restaurant – A New Generation of Chefs and Excellent Innovative Japanese in the East Village

I completely agree. I would love to become a regular -- I think that focussing on the sushi and maybe having a risotto may make it more financially viable for regular visits (our bill came to $240 with tax and tip, although we were/are rather glutinous!). I also mentioned to George your favorable write up -- he seemed really pleased and asked about who you were :)

Apr 28, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Red Velvet & Carrot Cake suggestions

This may sound crazy, but I am in love with the Cutie Carrot Cake at Whole Foods. The other sizes are different cakes, but the cutie size (about right for two... but me, no, I would NEVER eat it all to myself... *wipes crumbs off face*) is IMO perfection. I am very dismayed, however, that the last few times I have gone to my usual WF, I haven't seen it. After giving up sugar for lent for 40 days, me needs some of that cake.

Apr 28, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Yuba Restaurant – A New Generation of Chefs and Excellent Innovative Japanese in the East Village

Lau, I am so happy that you put this place on my radar. Mr. Nook and I had a beautiful meal there Saturday night. We sat at the sushi bar and chatted with the chef quite a bit (I believe it was George). We chatted about restaurants, travels, how business is going -- it was really pleasant. We had many of the same dishes as you, and really enjoyed them. We did the $60 set and added a few dishes. I think that next time we'll have more sushi -- everything that I had I truly enjoyed.

On Saturday night, it was about 1/2 full when we arrived at 8 pm. It was close to full when we left, but the entire time we were the only ones at the sushi bar. I can hardly wait to go back!

Apr 28, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Dynamite lunch at SHO Shaun Hergatt yesterday - terrific food and excellent value

I am glad you had such a good experience. I always enjoy the food, but I find the service to be quite variable (which IMO is pretty unacceptable at a restaurant of this caliber, but I would always prefer sub-par service and great food than the opposite).

I know it has been menitoned here before, but for anyone seeing this thread, also consider the Closing Bell dinner, which is a three-course dinner that changes every week. It's only available in the Pearl room (the bar room, which I tend to prefer anyway) Monday through Friday 5:30 pm to close. It's a fantastic value and the menu is generally available on the News / Events portion of the site.

Apr 24, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

French roast coffee in NYC

I am not a coffee drinker, but when my husband was in a situation similar to yours, we went to McNulty's Tea and Coffee Co. (109 Christopher Street). They have a great selection and were very helpful. They explained that it''s illegal to roast coffee in NYC (even though some run the risk), so their coffee is roasted in NJ.

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McNulty's Tea & Coffee
109 Christopher St, New York, NY 10014

Apr 23, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Hockey friendly restaurant for a Habs fans family

I am not sure if it's suitable for children, but the Canadian Association of New York airs Saturday Night in Canada games at the Windfall: http://windfallnyc.com/ (23 West 39th Street (212) 869-4606). You may want to call in advance to make sure that they're playing the game and that it's suitable for a child.

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Windfall
23 W 39th St, New York, NY 10018

Apr 20, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

41st Bday - EMP for lunch or The Modern Dining room for dinner ?

I had it about a week ago and it was with lobster. I have to admit, when I started it, although I thought it was good, I wasn't sure what the big fuss was about. To my delight, what started as a delicate flavor unfolded into a symphony of deliciousness.... several times since I have caught myself in egg in a jar reverie...

Mar 22, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Has anyone tried the new Tom Colicchio place Riverpark on 29th and the FDR

For future reference, prior to leaving our server asked us how many taxis we needed (security flagged them off 1st ave and sent them down 29th to pick us up).

Feb 20, 2011
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

wedding present

My favorite wedding gift was the Farmer's Feast at Blue Hill at Stone Barns (it's $105 for 5 courses and $135 for 8 courses).

Nov 15, 2010
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Drinks near Financial District?

What sort of place are you looking for? Beer, wine, cocktails?

I would recommend checking out Stone Street -- there is a bit of everything, granted that the days of enjoying a drink outside seem to be over. If you like wine, I enjoy Vintry Wine & Whiskey 57 on Stone Street.

If you're looking for standard cocktails (with the caveat that I haven't been for drinks), you may want to check out the BLT Bar & Grill in the W Hotel on Albany st. and Washington. It seems quite busy.

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Vintry Wine & Whiskey
57 Stone St, New York, NY 10004

BLT Bar & Grill
123 Washington St, New York, NY 10006

Oct 18, 2010
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Hearth is always so good

I wish mine had -- especially because I was torn between a couple of choices and asked for his input. He encouraged me to pick the sweetbreads and to split the two pastas. Again, I really do want to give it another shot because there were many things on the menu that appealed to me.

Oct 14, 2010
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Hearth is always so good

I wish I could share your enthusiasm, but for me there were a few misses. That said, I recognize that there were some real high points to my experience at Hearth, and I would be happy to go back.

I went there for a business dinner last week, and I have to say that the ambiance was perfect. Our service was generally good, except for when the server curtly reprimanded a staff member for pouring water as he was speaking to us. It was uncomfortable and really something he should have done in private afterwards.

I started with the Sweetbreads Piccata. I found the dish quite over-salted, which is unfortunate because I love sweetbreads, and I was seriously considering other appetizers (they all sound delicious). Before you jump on me asking whether I complained, I didn't want to do so at a business dinner. It was just disappointing.

I split the two pastas (which they were kind enough to let me do): the lamb pappadelle and the cavatelli. The Cavatelli was fantastic. I really enjoyed it. While the flavors in the lamb pappadelle were quite good, I couldn't stand the rosemary leaves/needles. I found the texture really unpleasant with the smoothness of the pasta (almost like sharp little twigs).

The desserts were quite good -- my table shared two orders of the apple cider doughnuts, the cheesecake and the cookie plate. The doughnuts were the clear winner. Mmmmmmm.

Everyone else seemed to enjoy their dishes.

Hearth gets extra points for being so kind to send me a copy of my itemized receipt that I accidently threw away.

Oct 14, 2010
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Where to buy cheese curds?

I am not surprised by this. The key to perfect curds is freshness. They should be consumed within 24 hours of being prepared -- also during this time they should not be refrigerated. Delicious sqweakiness! You can make poutine using refrigerated/older curds, but it just won't be the same. (Also, it should be consumed after a night of binge drinking, but that's another matter entirely.)

Sep 24, 2010
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Gobble, gobble

Success! Thanks to all who replied (and to gutsofsteel). I have ordered a Heritage Turkey from Quattro's Game Farm. They will bring it to the Union Square Greenmarket for me. For any other fellow canuks, or anyone who wants a turkey at an off-time, you can order one from Mrs. Quattro at 845-635-8202. She was very sweet and helpful.

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Union Square Greenmarket
Broadway and E 17th St, New York, NY 10003

Sep 22, 2010
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Gobble, gobble

Thanks for the recommendation -- this would have been exactly what I was looking for, except that they don't have fresh turkeys prior to thanksgiving. I may get one of their frozen turkeys if I can't find another suitable alternative.

Sep 21, 2010
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Gobble, gobble

Does anyone have a recommendation of where I can pre-order a fresh turkey for October 10? While I can order one from Whole Foods, I was wondering if anyone had any other recommendations. I searched the boards for recommendations from last year, but I thought it may be nice to have some more recent input.

Many thanks in advance.

Sep 20, 2010
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

Best Underground Eating Experiences in New York

It's just that underground. (Don't worry, I also have no clue what it is)

Sep 01, 2010
IntrepidNook in Manhattan

DC Chowhound headed to NYC- Vegetarian/Seafood Meals near Theatres

I wasn't able to make it, but my Dad had the pre-theatre meal at Milos (125 West 55th Street), which he quite enjoyed (and I was very sorry to miss). At $49, I thought that it was a good value for that restaurant. It fits both the seafood and walking distance requirements.

Aug 21, 2010
IntrepidNook in Manhattan