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Help me pick a restaurant for an occasion dinner?

Yep, have been to Craft (and Colicchio & Sons)—definitely like it, right up my alley, but am thinking I'd like to try something new.

Aug 20, 2013
prolix in Manhattan

A week in New York

If you've been there and you love it I'd say roll with that! I was just assuming you'd never been and might be expecting something more serious or formal; apologies. Personally, I do prefer it to Smorgasburg on grounds of atmosphere.

A late supper at The Dutch sounds totally great to me, especially because it can get a little loud at prime dinner hours.

Enjoy Norma's!

Aug 19, 2013
prolix in Manhattan

A week in New York

I do think The Dutch is a destination—it's one of my favorites (the curry donuts! and perhaps the best fries in town) and is particularly nice for lunch when you're walking around the area—but as much as I love Egg (and I do! I eat there every time I get my hair cut) I'm not sure it is, though it's the best breakfast I can think of if you're planning to be in the neighborhood (though I do like the weekend brunch at Nita Nita a lot, and if you're only interested in half a day I might suggest organizing it around dinner at Diner instead). I agree with kathryn above on the Breslin rec and also the inclination to swap Ssam for Ma Peche.

Right near you is the legendary breakfast experience at Norma's (in the Parker Meridien). Expensive, but...honeymoon! And it's not near, but you mention bakeries—I'm very fond of the City Bakery for coffee or hot chocolate and pastry, as well as some breakfasty buffet-style options.

Aug 19, 2013
prolix in Manhattan

Gazpacho in New York

If you're willing to travel to Brooklyn (apologies, I know you said Manhattan), the gazpacho at Applewood is really great. Cucumber-heavy, just a little spicy.

Aug 19, 2013
prolix in Manhattan

Help me pick a restaurant for an occasion dinner?

I think that's in range, though the more extensive chef's tasting menu ($195) feels too expensive. In general when my family eats out together a la carte tends to be easier, but I'm not totally opposed to requesting a tasting menu—personally, I like them.

I'm an omnivore with enthusiasm for red meat, seafood, and great salads. I'm super into bone marrow (and many kinds of offal); love oysters, mussels, scallops, clams; consider a good (i.e. super-crunchy) French fry a delight. I like some heat, I like some richness, I like texture.

Until it closed, my hands-down favorite restaurant in the city was Upstairs at the Bouley Bakery—everything I ever had there was interesting, complex, and satisfying; I still remember a meal with scallops in a funky, bright, rich mushroom & corn sauce and a champagne gelée with mandarin segments. Current favorites include The Dutch, Prime Meats, Brooklyn Fish Camp (there's this unbelievable Brussels sprout slaw), Karen DeMasco's desserts, the anchovy-dressed kale salad at Al Di La, the lemon-dressed kale salad with almonds at Northern Spy Food Co., the gazpacho at Applewood, the pretzel croissant at the City Bakery, the tripe tacos at Tacos Matamoros, chicken livers right out of my own skillet. I tend to gravitate to a basically "New American" sensibility, I think, though I have love for Japanese, Mexican, Mediterranean (in which I include Italian) and French cuisines/influences and am interested in some of the new Scandinavian stuff.

(Thanks for the questions!)

Aug 19, 2013
prolix in Manhattan

Help me pick a restaurant for an occasion dinner?

I'm turning thirty (!) in a couple of months, which means that I get to pick the restaurant for dinner with my family & my boyfriend (we'll be five). I am overwhelmed by choice.

Price range is pretty wide, since my dad is also a restaurant lover and it's a big round number birthday, but I'm not going to be asking for Per Se or Masa or top-flight sushi (although, mm). I'm inclined toward the idea of something starred—had a beautiful meal at Ai Fiori early this year (although ideally a smaller room, less midtown-y, would be nice). I've been dying to try Daniel for years, but am concerned it might perhaps be a little formal and a little (more than a little?) expensive. I love a good steak, and have been thinking about this especially since Frances Lam's piece on dry aging—so have thought about Minetta Tavern, but this seems like such a nice opportunity to get something dazzling, and I'm not sure Minetta Tavern is that (though because of a connection, we'd get a good table and good service). I'm also fond of shellfish, nose-to-tail, and the usual seasonality stuff.

Any thoughts or suggestions are much appreciated.

Aug 19, 2013
prolix in Manhattan

What's casual and great in Williamsburg?

Not sure if Egg still does dinner services, but if so, it would be worth checking out—it's casual, family-friendly (crayons on the tables), and very tasty.

Jul 21, 2013
prolix in Outer Boroughs

Please help- ISO: restaurant near Lincoln Center with both vegetarian & meat options!

Fiorello's is great for vegetarians; I eat there with my father (vegetarian, not vegan) all the time. No faux meat, but they do a ton of vegetable preparations (Italian cooking, so I assume there are enough made with olive oil & not butter that a vegan could fill up) that can be mixed & matched to make big entree plates.

Jul 20, 2013
prolix in Manhattan

Most overrated 'luxury food?

's'okay, you can just give it to me when they give it to you.

Most overrated 'luxury food?

Some of the "luxury" cuts of beef are, to my mind, lacking in flavor. I'll take a hangar steak over a filet mignon. But the other things the OP mentioned, I love! Foie admittedly the least of the bunch (though I love livers).

May 03, 2013
prolix in General Topics

French press or Chemex?

Yeah! And the friend who's been talking hers up is a fancy food person in the employ of an even fancier food person, so I take her recommendation seriously. My parents used a Chemex when I was a kid, but I've used a press pot my whole coffee-making life. I just wonder...

May 03, 2013
prolix in Cookware

French press or Chemex?

!!!

This is a very welcome link; thanks so much for it. SUCH a pain to keep buying new carafes. My enameled iron farmhouse sink is a real hazard to glassware.

May 03, 2013
prolix in Cookware

French press or Chemex?

This is *super* helpful; thanks for it!

I was indeed drawn to the easy clean-up of the Chemex, but if it makes up for it with attention during the brewing process, I'm not sure that doesn't cancel out for me.

I'm in Brooklyn so I can almost certainly track down a coffee shop that will indulge my taste-testing needs. None of my regular spots do drip/pour-over brews, but I know I've seen places that do...

May 02, 2013
prolix in Cookware

French press or Chemex?

I just cracked the carafe for my Bodum French press. Again. The carafe I go buy this afternoon to replace it would be I think the fourth in the last eighteen months (granted, I've moved more times than usual in that stretch, so perhaps I'm not just incurably clumsy). I've been thinking of making the switch to a Chemex anyway. Chowhounds, is this my moment? I like the coffee I make in my press, but have heard good things about the Chemex from a trusted food-industry friend. How would you characterize the differences in the coffee these methods produce?

May 02, 2013
prolix in Cookware

How do you take your coffee?

Home grind (cheapo blade grinder), French press, heavy cream, no sugar. Half-and-half works too.

Mar 03, 2013
prolix in General Topics

Cheap lunch in Chelsea/WV/HK

More specifics would help. But I like Artichoke Basille's on 10th Ave at 17th St. It's not my absolute favorite pizza in all of New York, but I love the burnt anchovy pie, and the fact that the portions are *giant* makes it even more affordable than it looks.

Mar 02, 2013
prolix in Manhattan

What food do you long for but can't find/recreate?

Hey, the Benson! I went to college in PDX, and my parents always stayed there—I liked to meet them for breakfast. They're still doing good things with king crab.

Mar 02, 2013
prolix in General Topics

What food do you long for but can't find/recreate?

Tortoni really rings a bell. I was born in '83, but I swear I've had that at a Little Italy restaurant...

Mar 02, 2013
prolix in General Topics

Dean and Deluca: is anything a good value?

I'm working on a 12-oz. bag of coffee that is *absolutely* worth the $13 or $14 I paid for it at D&D Soho. It's their Manhattan blend, and it is damn fine.

Mar 01, 2013
prolix in General Topics

What food do you long for but can't find/recreate?

Oh, I *do* wish you luck! Creamed spinach sounds promising.

The recreation quest is equal parts enjoyable and frustrating—I once got hung up on trying to reverse-engineer the spice blend in Pret a Manger's "Moroccan" lentil soup. It was just midtown convenience food...but it was SO tasty. I never got it quite right. Not that I didn't make myself a lot of good soup in the process, but the match goal remained elusive.

Mar 01, 2013
prolix in General Topics

NYC Food Itinerary

Seconding Bar Pitti! It's a wonderful neighborhood spot that's been around since I was a kid.

Mar 01, 2013
prolix in Manhattan

I always enjoy _____, no matter how bad it is.

Contributing to this revived thread something that's been mentioned already: grilled cheese. I love a three-cheese-and-applewood-smoked-bacon-on-sourdough, and I love an American-cheese-on-white-sandwich-bread. Give me a slice of off-season pinky-green supermarket tomato in there, too. Mm, grilled cheese.

Ooh, or a bacon-egg-and-cheese. Can't be ruined.

Mar 01, 2013
prolix in General Topics

What food do you long for but can't find/recreate?

Yeah, a pancake might be one of those things that imprints. I only like my dad's, which are small and crisp outside, with more of a chew than most. He adds a good proportion of cornmeal. He makes them very, very rarely now, but no other pancake interests me because in my mind, his are what pancakes are supposed to be.

Mar 01, 2013
prolix in General Topics

What food do you long for but can't find/recreate?

Mine is döner kebab, the way they're made in Berlin street stands. Whenever I've ordered items billed as döner in New York, they've erred on the side of shawarma, incorporating hummus, tahini sauce, tabbouleh, pita, etc. Still good! Just not quite what I'm looking for, you know? I pine for the crispy-outside-fluffy-inside flatbread full of crisp-edged spiced, shaved meat, cabbage, onion, tomato, cucumber, and Knoblochsöße. I was recently in Istanbul, and got all psyched for döner only to discover that my ideal döner is Germanized—neither the original nor the American version gives me the döner of my dreams. I have considered building a giant spit and making my own meat cones, but haven't actually tried it yet, because...crazy, and high-volume. I've basically given up hope and will just have to wait until I'm back in Germany one day.

Mar 01, 2013
prolix in General Topics
1

Sudden food obsessions?

I'm having a moment with chicken livers. And parsley as a salad green.

Mar 01, 2013
prolix in General Topics

Riff on a previous thread...if you could have anything for breakfast, every day (health and weight issues aside), what would it be?

Is someone else buying and making it for me? Because if yes, I'll take a half-dozen oysters with lemon, two poached eggs over greens & lardons, two Kos Kaffe cappuccinos, and a bloody mary with a small side of super-crispy hash browns.

In real life, I'm coffee & cream—then eventually some yogurt or eggs or leftovers.

Mar 01, 2013
prolix in General Topics

Foods you just don't like for breakfast?

Sweets. I've got a sweet tooth for sure, but, for me, breakfast should be savory (with the sole exception of the mild roasty sweetness of coffee with heavy cream—no added sugar, just the sweetness of the caramelization & the dairy). Even yogurt—I'll salt my Greek yogurt and add jerk seasoning or scallions or olives. The sweetest thing I want for breakfast is some occasional fresh fruit or *maybe* on a special occasion a few bites of candied bacon or cheese danish.

Mar 01, 2013
prolix in General Topics

Eating food in bed.

I love coffee in bed, or a little pre-sleep sweet. I just had a few dried apricots & cherries in bed not ten minutes ago, as a matter of fact.

Feb 10, 2013
prolix in General Topics

Your NYC gems - Please share!

I had a really lovely dinner at Ai Fiori recently—and it's midtown, so, easy, but it's expensive. My sentimental pick for favorite midtown restaurant is Orso, on W. 46th. If you want to get to MoMA, The Modern is an easy suggestion. And to throw in one for good measure, not near any of those places: The Dutch. It's in SoHo, great for lunch (the fries are the best in Manhattan, I think, and if the curry donuts are still on the menu, get them for *sure*).

Feb 10, 2013
prolix in Manhattan

Pre-concert MSG Dinner

The MSG/Penn area's kind of a food wasteland. There's good Korean just a couple blocks east on 32nd (I'm not personally an expert on that street, but I bet there's a thread on it!). My pick would be the Breslin, which is, I think, 29th (it's in the ground floor of the Ace Hotel) between Broadway & Fifth. I haven't had their burger, but it comes highly recommended, and I can vouch for the fries.

Feb 10, 2013
prolix in Manhattan