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Wanted - Sushi Nakazawa bar seating reservation

I have a rez I'm not sure I'll be keeping on October 7. Contact me via my facebook page.

1 day ago
sgordon in Manhattan

Best Lobster Linguine in NYC

Sadly, the lobster coral pasta is no longer on the Lincoln menu. The new Ravioli Nero that replaced it has the same lobster-scallop sausage, though.

1 day ago
sgordon in Manhattan

Feed me! Where to eat?

I like Rayuela as well, though it can get a little "clubstaurant-ish" on the weekends.

If it's just renovations, no big deal. Although we've all been around long enough to know that "renovations" is sometimes code for "closing" I suppose. One of their West Village places, Melibea, I believe has closed.

Sep 12, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Vegetarian / vegan recs? (downtown)

A little further North there's HanGawi, and their cheaper sister restaurant / noodle joint Franchia. Both vegan.

Souen (various locations) has lots of vegetarian / vegan options on their menu. Simple, straightforward, but tasty.

Angelica Kitchen is a nice enough place for lunch. Nothing fancy.

Most if not all Italian places should be able to accomodate. Bar Primi is decent, reasonably priced - six of the twelve pastas on the menu are vegetarian, and over half the starters.

Any Indian place would be fine - lately I've liked Malai Marke the best of the EV options. Banjara used to be one of the better ones too, though it's been awhile since I've been there.

Mehtaphor in Tribeca has a full vegetarian menu in addition to their regular one. Creative, fun stuff.

Any of the EV Ethiopian places - Awash, Meskel, or Haile - will have a number of veggie dishes.

Any Mediterranean / Middle Eastern place would be fine, just get a bunch of vegetarian meze. Balade is really good, they're in our regular delivery rotation. Of course Taim for falafel is great, and Hoomoos Asli I like quite a bit for more basic stuff, and you can actually sit there. Really enjoyed Little Rascal on Elizabeth the couple times we were there, though while all of the meze are vegetarian, they don't have any vegetarain entrees.

Sep 10, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Feed me! Where to eat?

..but the menu at Denny's did?

Sep 10, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan
1

2 Burn-Your-Face-Off Spicy Dinners?

My standards?

You're mistaking be for someone with standards, I think.

Sep 07, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

2 Burn-Your-Face-Off Spicy Dinners?

Well, anyone with a lick of sense knows Connecticut-style lobster rolls are superior, anyway. Haha.

Sep 06, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

2 Burn-Your-Face-Off Spicy Dinners?

Hey, I won't stop you.

Sep 06, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

2 Burn-Your-Face-Off Spicy Dinners?

I think it means that to some people, nothing served outside its homeland is "authentic" enough for them, even if it contains the exact same ingredients and is prepared by someone from that land exactly as they would back home, or because it doesn't taste EXACTLY like the version of that dish they tasted that time they visited that country.

See also: Pho, Banh Mi, Cubanos, Ramen, Carbonara, Lobster Rolls, Rendang, Laksa, etc, etc, etc...

Sep 05, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

2 Burn-Your-Face-Off Spicy Dinners?

I actually prefer their jalapeno margarita, flavor-wise. The habanero adds heats, but not much in the way of flavor.

There are lots of good margaritas in town, both classic and non. But Barrio Chino's are among the better ones.

Sep 05, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

new york city [near Lincoln Center, walker friendly]

As if it needs to be reiterated at this point... +1 for Lincoln. Great food, beautiful room / service.

Sep 05, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

2 Burn-Your-Face-Off Spicy Dinners?

There are a lot of myths about how spicy much Asian food should be. The whole "Native Thai" and "Thai Spicy" thing started as a way to cater to Farang fratboys playing one-upmanship, much like the Phaal Curry at Brick Lane. (Though I do like many other dishes at Brick Lane - the Phaal, as many have said, is a joke. Even the original chef admits it was a gimmick, if I recall correctly.)

Thais tend to get dishes (or those dishes which have chilies) at a pleasant burn, and then use condiments like dried chili powder or chili vinegars to boost it up to their own taste if they want a little more.

However, if the OP's guests want extreme, Zabb Elee would be my first choice. I would build up to it, though - get the first couple dishes medium-spicy, then finish with something more extreme. That way you don't blow out your palates with the first dish. Keep in mind that Zabb can be inconsistent. I've had Level 3 (out of 5) that was face-melting on one night, but perfectly pleasant on another. And if they're -really- adventurous eaters, there's the pork blood soup.

Sep 05, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

2 Burn-Your-Face-Off Spicy Dinners?

I think for the most part "spicy" Mexican food isn't as spicy as some Asian food. It's kind of mid-range spicy at most. But the Tortas Neza truck in Queens has a great house-made chili sauce.

Also on the Mexican tip, maybe - Grapefruit Habanero Margaritas at Barrio Chino.

Sep 05, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Rosette closing

...and rather abruptly. Bummer, they were on the verge of some pretty exciting changes with Chef Carl taking over. Hopefully he finds a new place quick.

http://m.ny.eater.com/archives/2014/0...

Sep 04, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Looking for a place for anniversary

+1 for Lincoln, even though it's Midtown. The prix fixes ($60/$75) are a very good deal for the quality. And it's a lovely room at night.

Further downtown:
Del Posto - it's a longer meal (five courses, but you select them so it's not a strict tasting menu) and might -just- skirt the edge of your budget depending what wine you get.

Blue Hill or Gramercy Tavern - solid New American, nothing too experimental. Two classics. I prefer Gramercy of the two - the service is extraordinary, and the tables are mostly set a good distance apart from each other.

Bouley, perhaps, though their prix fixe (it's not really a tasting menu because you get to select your courses, even if they call it a "tasting") is a little high for your budget at $175. They do offer a la carte, but their ALC prices strike me as a bit high.

Brushstroke's Kaiseki menu might be closer to your budget at $135. While the appetizers are set in the style of a tasting menu, the entree dishes (one fish, one meat, one rice) you select yourself. There are also a la carte options.

If you're willing to go so far downtown you're in Brooklyn, The River Cafe is arguably the most romantic room in NYC, especially if you request a window-side table.

Sep 04, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Aux Epices, New Malaysian in C'town: anyone try it yet?

Here's all you need to know:

You liked something or you didn't.

After that, authenticity is irrelevant.

Sep 02, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan
1

New York Michelin

They give separate ratings for service, etc. The star ratings are (theoretically) strictly for food alone.

Sep 02, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Cheap Lobster

It's simply been a bumper year for lobster is all. Last few years have been very good, in fact. Nothing to do with sizing (they're priced per lb, after all, not per lobster)

Softer shells actually have a higher meat to shell ratio - obviously, a thinner shell weighs less than a thicker one, thus it's a lower percentage of the overall weight. If I recall right, about 1/3rd of a soft lobster's live weight is usable meat versus 1/4 of a hard shell's. Varies lobster to lobster, of course, it's not exact.

Puts it into perspective, though: even if it's a "cheap" $6/lb, that's actually about $18-$24/lb for what you can actually eat from it.

Some chefs say the hard-shells taste sweeter, but I dunno. Since they're around at different times of year there's no way to actually taste them side by side.

Aug 30, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Rare date tonight -- need recs for dinner LES

Jealous! I was mostly bummed as it was the last chance to have Marcus' cooking until he gets around to having his own place again, whenever that may be.

Carl kills it in the kitchen. He was doing some amazing stuff at Aamanns before he left, hopefully he really gets to remake the menu at Rosette into a stage for his own work rather than just having him execute the old dishes for too long - though I noticed that fish special is already on the regular menu, so I guess it's already starting to change over. I -believe- the desserts are all his already as well.

Aug 29, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Rare date tonight -- need recs for dinner LES

True! Third time, make that. Forgot Toloache.

Mitchlee is right - it's roasted, not broiled. Minor difference, I suppose.

Aug 29, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Hoping that New York chowhounds are using discretion with their recommendations

Was one of the saddest closings of all time for me. Last I spoke to him he was back in Florence, don't know if that's permanent.

Some of his former staff opened Ciccio over on 6th. It's more in the Caffe Falai vein - straightforward house-made pastas, nothing as modernist as his flagship was - but a solid little joint nonetheless.

Aug 28, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Rare date tonight -- need recs for dinner LES

Well, no more mushy than an avocado naturally is. I mean, they're like Nature's Mayonnaise to start with.

It picks up a little char from the heat, and additional smokiness from the bonito. It really took me by surprise how much I liked it - it's kind of a crazy little concoction.

Years ago Dufresne had a charred avocado thing at WD-50. This is only the second time I've seen it cooked in a restaurant.

Aug 28, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Nice Vegetarian or Kosher Restaurant Mid Town

+1 for HanGawi. A little cheaper, and nearby, is their sister restaurant Franchia. Less fancy (you don't have to de-shoe) - good spot for noodles n' dumplings n' stuff.

Aug 28, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Steakhouse lower Manhattan

And there's always the Penthouse Club which has Robert's - a pretty well-regarded steakhouse - inside already. Or at least it was well-regarded when Lang was there. Dunno if he's still involved at all.

Aug 28, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Steakhouse lower Manhattan

I think much, much funnier knowing the image of "Guys & Dolls" the musical...

Aug 28, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Steakhouse lower Manhattan

Can't beat the $10 3-course lunch special at Rick's Cabaret, though.

Aug 28, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Steakhouse lower Manhattan

Actually, no, New York Dolls is the name of the place I was talking about.

Aug 28, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Steakhouse lower Manhattan

Probably check out American Cut. New York Dolls is about a five minute walk for your after-dinner entertainment needs.

Or stick to Brooklyn. Go to Peter Luger's and hit up Pumps (about a ten minute cab ride) afterwards.

Keep in mind with traffic it can take awhile to get from Barclays to Manhattan on a Friday night. I'd say a minimum of half an hour, more likely closer to forty-five minutes if traffic is heavy. Plus you'll be competing for cabs with everyone else leaving Barclays at the same time. Take the subway. It's right there and much, much, much, much faster.

Aug 27, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Lunch in lower east side this Friday

I'm not as crazy about Black Tree as others. I found the sandwiches kind of underseasoned and just sort of meh. Also both times I've been it took FOREVER for them to bring the food out, even though the place was rather sparsely filled.

Blue Ribbon is always solid, and the fried chicken at the new LES place is (like all their fried chicken variations) awesome. Zabb Elee can be fun for a date a long as you both like spicy... gets the blood flowing!

I see nothing wrong with ramen on a date. Just not the triple-garlic ramen, maybe. My first date with my GF was at Pho Grand, so slurpy noodles ain't nothin'.

Otherwise, on the LES... Schiller's, Fat Radish... then (after any of the above) go to Morgenstern's for ice cream if you want to keep the date going...

Aug 27, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan

Lunch in lower east side this Friday

Both are good. Neither are on the Lower East Side.

Aug 27, 2014
sgordon in Manhattan