m

matt's Profile

Title Last Reply

Outdoor Lunch Near GCT

Decided at the last minute to go out for lunch today and wanted to sit outside. Any suggestions in the Grand Central area? We order in almost every day so I am pretty clueless to our options. Open to all suggestions.

Jun 08, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Date place in Union Square

Yama, I really enjoy the sushi there (I know the size of the pieces are controversial here) and the tempura ice cream is great.

Casa Mono and Bar Jamon are also in the area.

Although I am not sure I would call Union Square Cafe reasonably priced, I think it is very reasonable given the quality of food and service. I think 2 people can get out of there for under $200 with wine, when my wife was pregnant and I was the only one drinking our bills were usually in the $150-160 area after tax and tip.

Apr 10, 2007
matt in Manhattan

New York Times article about tweaking recipes

The reason I thought she was condescending was in my quote above I felt like she was saying leave the adaptations and tweaking to the professionals. Obviously some of those examples were WAY WAY WAY different then the original recipe and yes moronic.

Mar 21, 2007
matt in Food Media & News

Pre-Dinner Drinks - East Village

I am taking my father out for dinner tonight. We are going to Degustation and then meeting up with my brother at Pegu Club for an after dinner drink.

Any suggestions where we should go for a drink before dinner? I live in the area but don't hit bars the way I use to and wanted to take him someplace nice and different.

Maybe DBA for the selection of beers but definitely open to ideas.

Mar 21, 2007
matt in Manhattan

New York Times article about tweaking recipes

I found Ms. Stewart's comments to be condescending. You left out this quote of hers.

"“You see Emeril, the most genial guy in the world, making a U-turn in the middle of a recipe, and people think they should cook like that, too,” said Ms. Stewart of Gourmet. “They forget that he’s a highly trained chef.”"

People should have fun cooking and be experimental, if all they wanted to do was follow an easy recipe and put some food on the table she would probably be out of a job.

Some of my favorite recipes are either new recipes I have made up or combinations of several recipes to make the best dish. Who hasn't looked up a recipe on Epicurious or another site and combined the best features of similar recipes to come up with your own.

Mar 21, 2007
matt in Food Media & News

rehearsal dinner in manhattan, 85 people

We had our rehearsal dinner at St Maggies Cafe for ~100 people. It's near Wall St. Great old bar for cocktails then a very nice room for the dinner itself. Food was very good, I think we had 4 courses and they set up a microphone and speakers for speeches.

Mar 20, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Babbo Reservations ... Help!

Every time I go to Babbo I get the pasta tasting menu with the wine pairing and every time it just amazes me.

That being said I think I am going to either get the regular tasting menu or just order off the menu next time as they haven't significantly changed the past tasting in years and I want to sample some other dishes.

Mar 07, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Las Vegas?

When I went to Lotus of Siam, we just let our waitress guide us through the menu and she made several excellent choices. I would definitely suggest doing that when you are out there, and just let them know you want vegetarian options. Probably one of the best meals I had when I was out there.

Here is a link to my review of my most recent trip out there in January
http://www.chowhound.com/topics/359986

Mar 07, 2007
matt in Southwest

Strip House...good?

I have to disagree on the seafood. I've gotten it twice and both times I was very dissapointed. Just didn't seem as fresh to me.

The steak is very good (not lugers but still very good). I always get the strip steak as I am always dissapointed in the porterhouse everywhere but Lugers.

My favorite potatoes are the logs. I don't think thats the name but they will know what you mean.

Finally the room is so much nicer than almost any other steak house, with the exception being Dylan Prime, that it makes for a great place for a date or other meal where you are looking for atmosphere as well as a terrific steak.

Mar 07, 2007
matt in Manhattan

What is the best steak?

Dry aged rib eye or strip steak if I am splurging and skirt steak for an everyday cut.

Although I prefer the on the bone rib eye since my wife likes her meat medium rare and I like it rare we usually get the strip steak since its easier to cook it for each of us than getting a giant rib steak on the bone to share.

As for the poster asking about skirt steak, I usually marinate it over night (probably overkill but am at work so can't marinate it for just a few hours) in soy sauce, a little fresh lemon juice, garlic, ginger and maybe some red wine if I have a little left over in a bottle. Then just throw it in my grill skillet that I have heated under the broiler and broil for 2 minutes per side for rare. Awesome and super easy. 5 minutes of prep the night before and 5 minutes to cook.

Mar 07, 2007
matt in General Topics

Is the Zagat guide reliable?

They just averaged the 0-3 score and multiply by 10. They should allow you to put in 0-30. Otherwise it leads to score inflation.

Mar 02, 2007
matt in Food Media & News

Peculiar Passover Practices

We have the same thing but also with onions in it. Cold salt water with chopped up hard boiled egg and onion. I love it!! Always ask for seconds.

Mar 02, 2007
matt in General Topics

Babbo Reservations ... Help!

My bad. What's funny is I even have the rules written down in my outlook calendar for my wife's birthday.

Mar 01, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Drinks in Grand Central

Where should I go to meet someone for a couple of beers after work in Grand Central.

Mar 01, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Is the Zagat guide reliable?

I have found Zagat's to be more accurate in NY where people are harsher on restuarants than in other markets. Like the above poster pointed out some places get scores in the high 20s that would be a 21 in NY.

I have 2 other issues with zagat's unrelated to cross-market comparison
1) restaurants that are popular but have gone downhill continue to get high scores as people probably vote based on their experience years ago
2)the prices I find to be what it would cost to order the cheapest appetizer and entree at dinner before dessert and a drink. I am sure some of it comes from the lunch crowd but suggested price for some restaurants is below what the prix fixe is for that restaurant (and thats the only option). For example Grammercy Tavern is listed at $76 and this is supposed to include 1 drink and tip but their website has dinner at $76 and some dishes have suppliments and they have tasting menus as well. Shouldn't the average meal therefore cost closer to $100 ($76 with a 20% tip is 91.20)? I know about the tavern room but this example was first to come to mind.

Mar 01, 2007
matt in Food Media & News

Babbo Reservations ... Help!

If memory is correct for March 29, 30 or 31st you call on February 28th. If that was going to be a problem for you call a few days before the day you open takes reservations and call and ask the rules. If you call in the afternoon the lines aren't busy.

I've never had trouble getting a reservation at Babbo when making the reservation the month ahead of time. I believe its only frustrating if you don't call in the morning and keep getting shut out of the time you want.

Feb 28, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Dinner near 49th and Madison

I'm a big fan of Ocean in that area.

Feb 28, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Sushi near Empire State Building

Sushi sen-nin on 33rd between Mad and Park is certainly near by. Not sure how much it came to since I was taken there with work but if I recall the prices were normal sushi prices, certainly cheaper than Sushi Gari or Yasuda.

Feb 26, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Little Owl

thanks! Unfortunately not a single available table for the searchable period. I guess I'll just keep checking.

Feb 24, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Little Owl

I just checked open table and didnt see them listed. I figured I would just take the next available table.

Feb 23, 2007
matt in Manhattan

First Date Around West 4th Street Subway Station

Piadina is a great first date spot, although I am biased as thats where I went on my first date with my wife.

Sevilla is a great Spanish restaurant, not tapas, on W4th and Charles St. Been going there my entire life and love it just as much now as a kid. Its not a kids place my parents just took us to restuarants and we ate the mariscada or the veal with almond sauce. Be warned it is garlicy.

Feb 23, 2007
matt in Manhattan

DINNER PARTY dish w/ minimal last-minute prep

For dessert I would make individual molten chocolate cakes. Just put them in the oven 12 minutes before you are going to serve them.

Feb 23, 2007
matt in Home Cooking

I'm planning a trip to Napa, when do I go, where do I stay?

Vincent Arroyo is great. Their petite syrah is also amazing. Really friendly people there.

Personally I would avoid the big wineries and focus on smaller places. You are more likely to get personalized service, meet with the winemaker and taste some great wines that you can't find at your local wine store.

When I went to Napa 2+ years ago I was not that into wine and visited all the wineries I ahd heard of. This trip gave me the wine bug and now its a serious hobby of mine. I can't wait to go back and this time I plan to hit all the places you read about in WS and WA but only produce a few hundred cases or are allocation lists only. Just because its small doesn't mean its expensive. Opus produces thousands of cases a year and is more expensive than lots of wineries.

Feb 23, 2007
matt in San Francisco Bay Area

DINNER PARTY dish w/ minimal last-minute prep

Braised dishes are impressive and all of the work is done hours ahead of time. I am partial to short ribs, but Coq au Vin, leg of lamb or osso bucco would also be great. Serve with horseraddish or leek mash potatoes which can also be made ahead of time and just reheated (or cut the potatoes ahead of time since how long does it really take to mash them up)

A lot more money but a standing rib roast is always impressive, especially if you get prime beef, who doesn't love prime rib.

If you really want to impress and have a backyard and are ambitious roast a whole lamb.

Think about dishes you make on the holidays, generally those are made well in advance or at least some are. Ok I realize my lamb suggestion was a bit over the top.

Feb 23, 2007
matt in Home Cooking

Business Dinner Rec Needed

The Modern or Oceana

Feb 23, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Who had the whole pig at Daisy Mae?

I've seen on their website that you only need to order the pig 2 days ahead of time but was trying to gauge how far in advance the reservation should be made.

Thanks

Feb 19, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Who had the whole pig at Daisy Mae?

How far in advance did you have to make your reservation? I've been dying to put together a group to do this.

Feb 16, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Seeking NYC restaurant recommendations

Two Boots? Their pizza should not be mentioned in the same line as Joe's.
Go to Joe's and skip Two Boots. Its ok but far from the best the city has to offer.

Just to be argumentative (not sure why I am in that mood) but I think Bond St. is overrated and mroe of a trendy scene than top notch Japanese food. I always think of it as a Nobu wannabe.

And for a raw bar nothing beats Aquagrill. The oyster selection alone is worth a trip.

As for fine dining I would add Per Se to the list if you can get a table, although if you've been to French Laundry I would pick one of the others. Le Cirque is still living off its reputation from before I cared about food and not up to par these days. Perhaps Bouley or Cru.

Feb 16, 2007
matt in Manhattan

Bubba Gump Shrimp / Serendipity worth the stop?

Even if you are not in SoHo I would hop on the subway or take a taxi there for dinner. Not too expensive and some of the best fish and seafood in the city. They have one of the most amazing selections of oysters anywhere. For a little less money I would suggest Mermaid Inn.

Given how easy it is to get around in the city I wouldn't let the neighborhood impact my dinner choices, lunch yes but not dinner (assuming you don't have a play to catch or something like that)

Feb 16, 2007
matt in Manhattan

chicken breasts on the bone...help/ideas?

I like to let the breasts sit in a mix of plain yogurt and mustard for about 30 minutes then coat the chicken in crushed corn flakes with a little cajun seasoning and paprika. I then spray the chicken lightly with pam and then bake for 45-50 minutes at 375.

Feb 15, 2007
matt in Home Cooking