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jbwalker's Profile

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Marseille or Nice Matin?

And of the two I would choose Nice Matin. I simply like the menu better and the wait staff is quite attentive and helpful. They have a burger, they have a marvelous grilled hanger steak on a bed of perfectly sauteed spinach. So a 10 yr old can be happy and so can the adults. Lots of nice small starters, almost like tapas, you can share in the middle of the table. Very nice wine list as well. I would agree it can be loud on a weekend night but the bar is small and doesn't physically intrude on the dining area whereas to get to the good size bar at Marseille one has to pass through the dining tables where I've on more than one occasion been buffeted by staff and patrons alike passing back and forth from the bar to the front door, the kitchen and restrooms. I find there are plenty of large tables at Nice Matin where one is well out of the way of traffic. Good luck!

Dec 10, 2008
jbwalker in Manhattan

UES Lunch, near Asia Society?

I like your recommendations very much, just wanted to get the skinny on the cafe if you had it. Thanks again.

Dec 09, 2008
jbwalker in Manhattan

UES Lunch, near Asia Society?

Any thoughts on the restaurant in The Asia Society? I hear good and not so good...

Dec 09, 2008
jbwalker in Manhattan

Best Recession Deals?

Bingo. Mosco St. is the best. No tables, a "bar" along the back wall with 5 or 6 stools. Usually we stand on the street and scarf them down in 2 minutes, really fun in winter when you're freezing and they're blisteringly hot. I'm not a fan of styrofoam and plastic forks but I make the exception here. You can also take them home uncooked. Still 5 for a buck last I saw which I think was a few weekends ago.

Dec 09, 2008
jbwalker in Manhattan

Sushi in Midtown on the Westside

Our lunch and dinner go-to place is EAST on 55th between 8th and B'way, north side of the street. Good lunch specials. Fish is great, not sublime or earth shaking but the price reflects that. Huge turnover night and day, one of the big things I look for in a sushi restaurant and half the customers are asian. That speaks volumes as well. Not just sushi; bento boxes, noodles, stuff on rice and even Shabu-Shabu at dinner. There are a number of sushi restaurants on 55th and 56th both between 6th and 5th you can look at but we haven't done any of those in awhile, we live nearer to 9th so EAST works best in a pinch. For high-end sushi we travel farther afield or spend too much. Good luck!

Dec 09, 2008
jbwalker in Manhattan

UES Lunch, near Asia Society?

I know this has been asked before but there aren't many replies on the thread... I'm looking at B. Cafe on 75th. Looks fine to me. Not too expensive yet not too "cheap." My in-laws are taking us to lunch after we check out the museum.

Dec 09, 2008
jbwalker in Manhattan

favorite lunch places in times square?

I'm going to pitch for 9th ave. Tons of food between 36th and 50th (let alone above and below) because that's probably as far as you can roam. Burgers, empanadas, beans and rice, thai...

Pam's Real Thai, 49th and 9th
Deportivo(puerto rican/cuban with lunch specials), 48th and 9th
International Market(greek takeaway) 40th and 9th
Pakistani Restaurant(cab driver's favorite) 37th and 9th
(Kodama Sushi, 45th and 8th)

These are the eclectic and interesting choices, one's I like but all you needs is an hour and a willingness to dive into a place you aren't familiar with and you're set. Walk 9th Avenue, you'll be pleasantly surprised. Cheers!

Dec 15, 2007
jbwalker in Manhattan

Sunday brunch in Charleston

How come lots of people put Justine's down? All I hear is 'it ain't all that'... what gives? I looked into Poogan's Porch and am thinking I might do it. I do have a reservation at High Cotton, it's my wife's bday and I was thinking a little snazzier but I haven't totally decided... and I like bacon grease! I hear Hominy Grill is rather 'campy' so Poogan's Porch must be like Gone With The Wind or something...

Dec 04, 2007
jbwalker in General South Archive

Dinner in Charleston... Help!

We've made a reservation at Hank's which comes recommended by a number of locals we spoke with along with a couple of Chowhound nods. They gave us a good seating time and were fine about the size of our party which a number of places were not. It's the right 'price' for us, casual yet nice and the food looks good and 'low' and seeing as how we are yankees I think it's a good fit. Any objections?

Dec 01, 2007
jbwalker in General South Archive

Sunday brunch in Charleston

P.S. Sorry, when I say Charleston I mean Charleston S.C. I shouldn't be so presumptuous as to think everyone's a mind reader. jb

Nov 29, 2007
jbwalker in General South Archive

Sunday brunch in Charleston

I was looking to hit Hominy Grill on December 22nd but it is closed over the entire Holiday weekend. Is there something we shouldn't miss? Thanks!

Nov 29, 2007
jbwalker in General South Archive

Dinner in Charleston... Help!

Lots of places are booked for that night or not able to accommodate that large a party because they already have a great deal of reservations. I've looked at Hank's website, read some pieces on it and subsequently booked a table, the only reservation left being 7:15 so I feel we made it right under the wire. If anyone has other ideas, please don't hesitate to add them as we can cancel our reservation if something else looks better. Thanks!

Nov 28, 2007
jbwalker in General South Archive

Dinner in Charleston... Help!

We are going to be a party of 10 on December 22nd, holiday weekend, and were so looking forward to eating at Slightly North of Broad (SNOB) but when I called they told us for a party of 10 we could only have two tables next to each other, not pulled together and the only reservations available were for 6pm and 9pm. Where to go now?! High Cotton has some drawbacks from what I hear, I'd love to hit Hominy Grill but they only do brunch on the weekends, is there something comparable in price, food and atmosphere to SNOB downtown that can handle a party of 10? I'd be happy at The Boathouse on Isle of Palms where we are staying but some of us want to be downtown... Thanks!

Nov 28, 2007
jbwalker in General South Archive

Sunset Park Chinatown

I'm sure I got it mixed up, #10 rice noodles with pork stew is the 'signature' dish though apparently #11 is just as authentic. The only reservation I have is I'm not a fan of eating out of disposable plastic containers and her soup bowls get thrown out after every use. No time or room for a dishwasher. I'm never a fan of participating in creating garbage that will last for over a 1000 years because I wanted a meal that lasts less than half an hour. But that's just me.

Nov 15, 2007
jbwalker in Outer Boroughs

Sripraphai (Woodside) or Lotus of Siam (Las Vegas)?

Sripraphi is the winner hands down over the newly renovated Thailand Restaurant on Baxter. Haven't been to Las Vegas. But Woodside is definitely the destination for varietal Thai food in the 5 boroughs of Manhattan. Every other Thai restaurant pales in comparison. Believe it.

Nov 11, 2007
jbwalker in Outer Boroughs

Sunset Park Chinatown

Hey Peter,
We just made our first visit to Sunset Park, 8th ave Seafood was terrific! We passed on Pacificana in favor of 8th Ave's smaller, family style crash bang boom atmosphere. Lots of new and good eats, in particular a cold seafood dish consisting of tiny boiled octopus in a spicy sweet chili sauce on a bed of jelly fish and pickled vegetables... really really good and served off the dim sum carts. A chef's special. Steamed dumpling with vegetables and fresh peanuts and shrimp and greens wrapped in rice noodles were also stand-outs. The owners were quite friendly, asked how we found out about them and I gave them the chowhound website address, they were excited to find they are thought well of.
We found Yunnan Snack down the avenue and polished off bowls of noodles and dumplings in delectable broths and spicy sauces. Got to talking with two customers, a married couple, the wife was from the same town as the owners/operators of Yunnan. They were leaving as we came in but they took the time to approach us and talk about the food and the owners. Rice Noodles with pork, #11 is their signature dish and apparently the most authentic item on the menu. More stew than soup. Pork braised for hours with lots of flavors. NO FRILLS DINING but totally our kind of place. Thanks for the suggestions. We don't normally eat two meals within three hours but given the lucky circumstances, we couldn't help ourselves. And since it was the weekend there were waffle cake makers on the corner and so for a dollar a bag we each had steaming hot cakes for dessert to keep us warm as we strolled back down 8th ave. A wonderful, tasty, friendly afternoon.

Nov 11, 2007
jbwalker in Outer Boroughs

What were they cleaning? Please help identify this fruit or nut! [Moved from Manhattan board]

Yes, they are ginko nuts and you can find people, mainly women, selling them on street corners in Chinatown at this time of year. They gather the 'fruit' off the ground, often in Central Park but also right off the pavement all over Manhattan. One can find the same situation with periwinkles which have been plucked off rocks in the East River. Unappetizing to say the least.

Nov 03, 2007
jbwalker in General Topics

110th to 116th B'Way eats!

Thanks again everyone, due to schedule, palate and location it's either going to be Pisticci, Symposium or Lime Tree. I've never been to Pisticci so we might do that as an exploration. We want a sit down joint with a bit of atmosphere where we can linger and spread out. That may mean Symposium, not the best greek food in town but by no means the worst.

And no, in response to a posting, my mother isn't a 'foodie' and neither am I. Does anyone else bristle at the moniker, 'foodie'? Even 'spell check' doesn't like it...

Nov 02, 2007
jbwalker in Manhattan

Grand Central Oyster Bar

If you're asking me, it's always worth the visit as long as you sit at one of the counters. The sit down restaurant experience to the left as you walk in doesn't live up to the prices but the helpful, bustling and informative staff, chaotic visible kitchen and the raw bar make perching on a stool with a glass of wine or beer and a bowl of red or white chowder well worth the $. It ain't cheap by chowhound lunch standards but if you don't order things like the skimpy and overpriced lobster roll and stick with pan roasts, soups, po' boys and OYSTERS you'll have fun. Don't eat in the saloon either, you'll feel like you're at the kid's table while all the grownups are having real food in the other room. Saturday isn't as good as a work day, more tourists less commuters and business regulars (so many men looking straight out of a John Cheever story, horn rimmed glasses, blue blazers and the Wall Streeet Journal. I can't get enough of spying on them!) but it should still be fun. HIt the Grand Central Market for a stroll and even cough out big bucks for a drink in the Campbell Apartment on the mezz level. EXPENSIVE but good clean fun. Enjoy!

Nov 02, 2007
jbwalker in Manhattan

110th to 116th B'Way eats!

Thanks everyone, I really appreciate it. Alas, this is all as I suspected. We may have to venture down a bit further down to 108th on b'way. And there's always Spoonbread over on 110th. I appreciate the suggestions and will check all the one's I am unfamiliar with. jb

Nov 02, 2007
jbwalker in Manhattan

Saturday Brunch for 8 in Hell's Kitchen

Want to know what I've discovered? Westbank Cafe on 42nd street just west of 9th avenue has a slamming brunch and you don't have to wait half an hour to get in. There's usually room and no waiting. The lemon ricotta pancakes are OUT OF THIS WORLD. Eggs etc. are also great, lots of room especially for a large party. Go for it. I was skeptical but am a convert.

Nov 01, 2007
jbwalker in Manhattan

Best Chinatown Restaurant Period.

This is such a subjective question and so open for argument that folks are shying away from replying... but I'm a fool so I'll put my foot in it... In the 'arcade' or what others might call a passage way between Elizabeth Street and Bowery half a block below Canal is a long established restaurant called New Malaysia which sports some of the best eats in the area. Given the relationship between the southeast asian countries New Malaysia's menu is right on cue serving home cooking from Thailand to Southern China to of course Malaysia. Over 20 years of service to the community, highly regarded by those in the know yet undiscovered by loud mouthed foodies. Always packed with predominantly asian clientele but the wait is never over 5-10 minutes. We've quietly introduced over 50 people to this gem and they return again and again but luckily have kept it under their hats. The restaurants you name have sadly been overrun by blog saturated food groupies and all have suffered in one area or another. I shouldn't even be writing this!!! But the owner of New Malaysia, Andy, deserves all the business he can scoop up and no one will listen to me anyway because Zagats hasn't rated it and Julian Schnabel hasn't eaten there in his pajamas. Go scour the menu and have FUN.

Nov 01, 2007
jbwalker in Manhattan

110th to 116th B'Way eats!

Our mom is in town staying on 116th at Columbia and we need a place close by that's homey, nice, easy, great, tasty, relaxed, local and the food isn't cooked by goofballs. Thanks!

Nov 01, 2007
jbwalker in Manhattan