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Town Hall/NYC

Hi Everyone,

I am hosting a group of 12 people prior to an upcoming show @ Town Hall. Our guest of honor is requesting Italian......it is a crowd of New Yorker's so of course want to avoid any tourist places. Is there a hound consensus for best Italian in the Times Sq/Theater District area?

Thank you in advance.

Jul 13, 2015
chowfreak in Manhattan

Cross & Orange, Asbury Park

I was there last Saturday night....place was packed and lively (which I enjoy). Sat at the bar having a drink and watched a woman send back a burger not once, but twice.....it was WAY undercooked (yes, I am a med rare guy).

We then sat for dinner....service was a little choppy, but that doesn't bother me so much. We order apps (shrimp diavlo, lobster mac, mussels) and rib-eye, pork chop (me), lamb chops.....the aps, while OK, seemed a bit bland and didn't have any punch.

My pork chop (ordered medium....i was being cautious) was cooked properly but just seemed to be of poor quality....very little flavor to the meat; same as my friend's "ribeye" which is usually a great cut...this was flat, bland, etc. At the prices they are charging they need to step the quality up.

While I did not say anything to the staff, I did send an email afterwards sharing my observations; i want this place to succeed as I like the vibe, menu, room....but I suspect they will be challenged over the long haul if the quality does not align closer with the cost.

Apr 02, 2015
chowfreak in New Jersey

Easy BBQ Baby Back Pork Ribs

Mar 24, 2015
chowfreak in Recipes

Last Minute Reccomendations?

Hi All,

My wife and I have an unexpected night out; its been awhile (too long) since we've been out in NYC. Historically, we have enjoyed some classic casual/great downtown establishments like Lupa, Le Gigot, Bar Pitti, etc.

I've been a bit out of the loop, but ideally looking for a place downtown that we may have a shot at walking into around 6:30 pm. Italian or French preferred....good wine list, comfortable service, etc...

Thanks in advance.

Chowfreak

Mar 12, 2015
chowfreak in Manhattan

Best cheese selection at a market??

Sickles.

Aug 01, 2014
chowfreak in New Jersey

Fresh - Highlands

Has anyone been here? What is the general consensus? I believe they are open; I am surprised there is not more mention. I have not been but would like to try.

http://www.fresh-cuisine.com/Home_Pag...

May 22, 2013
chowfreak in New Jersey
1

Boneless Leg of Wild Boar

I ordered a boneless leg of wild boar, rolled and tied, and I am not 100% sure on best method to prepare. Herb crust and roast? Braise slow and low?

Any help is appreciated.

Thanks.

Mar 03, 2012
chowfreak in Home Cooking

Le Fandy - Fair Haven

One more thought...we were deciding between Belford Bistro and Le Fandy. Curious to hear Hounds thoughts between the two as I would like to try BB next. Thanks.

Jan 20, 2012
chowfreak in New Jersey

Le Fandy - Fair Haven

My wife and I enjoyed a very nice dinner at Le Fandy in Fair Haven last night. We have been wanting to try this spot for over a year and we will certainly be returning.

We started with the seared Fois Gras which was a treat. She enjoyed the perfectly cooked rack of lamb and I had the cassoulet....great on a cold night. Dessert was the molton chocolate cake and the warm bread pudding...which I was glad I was talked into ordering!

While the food was very good, I was pleased that (even on a weeknight when we were only 1 of 2 tables at 7:30 PM) the little things that make dining out enjoyable were perfectly executed. 1. Selection of warm rolls (I had asiago, my wife had 7 grain) 2. Amuse Bouche of date/blue-cheese tart. 3. Quite, appropriate music playing 4. Attentive, knowledgable service that was not overbearing.

We brought a nice bottle of Champagne and were happy to share the remainder of the bottle with the chef after dinner.

We have been hard pressed to find many places in the area that pay attention to these little things that make a difference...we will most certainly be back!

Curious to hear any other recent thoughts on this place.

Chowfreak

Jan 20, 2012
chowfreak in New Jersey

Cafe Boulud or Marea - Anniversary

Hi Hounds,

I have reservations for both to celebrate my 6th anniversary on Saturday night. Tthoughts? Have read mixed reviews on both on this board. We enjoy fine dining but don't want to be in an overly stuffy environment. Typically we would be at a downtown restaurant but figured we would try something different and these both had availability on short notice.

Is there a consensus? Comments are appreciated.

Chowfreak

-----
Cafe Boulud
20 East 76th St., New York, NY 10021

Marea
240 Central Park South, New York, NY 10019

Sep 14, 2011
chowfreak in Manhattan

Pig Roast Prices?

Hi,

After doing a fair amount of research earlier this summer I hired Eddie's Portable Pig Out and it was awesome. Was not the cheapest nor the most expensive....but it was high quality, professional, and great food. Read the info on his web site carefully.

http://www.eddiesportablepigout.com/

Aug 22, 2011
chowfreak in New Jersey

Pre Pig Snack

Just to clarify, the invite very clearly stated that there would be pig and lamb....I am spending a lot of money on having a professional pig roaster cater the event....he will also have 6 "beer can chickens", potato salad, corn, slaw, chips, melon, etc. I really hope people eat the pig and I think there is excitement for it. That being said,I do realize it is not for everyone....thus, the burgers and dogs. We will also have mac and cheese as well as the full lamb. If people are upset that they don't have salmon or veggie burgers, well, I'm not really going to worry about it.

Thanks for all the help though!

Jun 29, 2011
chowfreak in Home Cooking

Pre Pig Snack

Thanks for the concern. I can clarify....we are having a 100 lb pig for ~80 adults and 30 kids (under 5)....in addition, we are doing a 35lb lamb on a spit and will have burgers, dogs, salads, etc....so, I think we should be fine. Thanks!

Jun 28, 2011
chowfreak in Home Cooking

Pre Pig Snack

Hi Everyone,

I am hosting a pig roast for about 100 people. While there will be plenty of food once the pig is served, I am having a hard time figuring out what to put out for snacks, etc. I want to avoid the obvious chips/dips that will most likely go to waste. Any ideas for a light snack for a large group before a big meal?

Thanks.

Chowfreak

Jun 28, 2011
chowfreak in Home Cooking

Backyard Pig Roast

Hi,

Has anyone had any experience with a catering company that does whole hog on the spit?

I am in Monmouth County and want to plan a party this summer.

Thanks.

Chowfreak

May 23, 2011
chowfreak in New Jersey

Bored With Bagels - Breakfast for a Large Group

There is a tradition in my office that an expecting parent brings in bagels to announce the big news. As there is a baby boom going on, it feels like we are eating bagels every other day. To announce our joyful news, I want to spice it up a bit. Anyone have ideas for a suitable breakfast alternative? Someone suggested Donut Plant? Curious to hear other ideas. Needs to feed about 75 people.

Thanks,
Chowfreak

May 02, 2011
chowfreak in Manhattan

HELP - Last Minute Client Dinner

Thanks. We will roll in via cabs, alcohol included, price not really a concern, pharma clients, individual ordering preferred. thanks.

will check open table as you suggest.

HELP - Last Minute Client Dinner

Hello,

I am in town this coming weekend and have been tasked with organizing a 10 person client dinner for Saturday night. Any suggestions on a place that can accomodate? Ideally, want a Cali/SF experience......not too stuffy, etc.....food to accomodate all tastes, etc.

Realize this is going to be tough, but thanks in advance!

CHOWFREAK

Wings and Subs - Red Bank Area

Do you know if Jacks would do a to-go order? Thanks for the recos.

Feb 04, 2011
chowfreak in New Jersey

Wings and Subs - Red Bank Area

Thinking of throwing together a last minute SB party. Want to go easy and order most of the food. Looking for places where I can get a good 3/6-foot sub and wings, etc. Can be two different places.

Thanks in advance.

chowfreak

Feb 04, 2011
chowfreak in New Jersey

Good pizza in Monmouth County (split from Chains board)

The thing to order at 1st Ave Pizza is the Grandma's Pie.....I just moved down from NYC and have eaten my fairshare of Grandma's, and I'm telling you, this is the real deal at 1st Ave. Give it a try.

Nov 18, 2010
chowfreak in New Jersey

Easy Roast

Hi Hounds,

I am having a small dinner party on Saturday and am trying to avoid my classic mistake of overdoing it with prep/work. I am going to do a simple pumpkin tortellini (store bought) with brown butter/sage for a first course...and want to do a very simple roast with veg for a main.

I haven't served too many roasts to guests as I usually do a braise which takes 2 days, etc....can someone share a winner that is company worthy?

Thanks in advance.

Chowfreak

Nov 18, 2010
chowfreak in Home Cooking

Wine/Specialty Shops - Monmouth County

Thanks to everyone. I am moving to the Locust section of Middletown, but am from the area (Little Silver) originally. Have been spoiled living in NYC for the past 12 years but always believe there is quality to be found.

You mentioned farmers markets above....I have been to Red Bank and found it pretty good. Any others in the area? Any comments about the Atlantic Highlands farmers market? Thanks everyone.

Sep 09, 2010
chowfreak in New Jersey

Wine/Specialty Shops - Monmouth County

Hello,

I am moving to Monmouth County in a few weeks and am curious to know what the hounds find to be the best/most interesting specialty shops.....most interested in a quality wine shop with fair prices and knowledgable staff but also curious about cheese/charcuterie, bread, etc.

Thank you in advance.

Chowfreak

Sep 09, 2010
chowfreak in New Jersey

Help w/ My Menu

Thanks! Need a little reasurance from the Hounds!

CF

Oct 16, 2008
chowfreak in Home Cooking

Help w/ My Menu

I'm having friends over this weekend who have requested a low-carb meal.....here is what i'm thinking:

Leek Soup
Arugula/Fennel/Shaved Pecorino Salad w/ lemon vinagrette
Sliced hanger steak w/ shallots/mushrooms/red-wine sauce
Sauteed Green Beans w/ shallots and sliced almonds
Figs/Pears/Cheese

Do you think this is a good combo? Any ideas for modifying, etc.??

Oct 16, 2008
chowfreak in Home Cooking

Phoenix to San Diego

Help! I'm driving from Phoenix to San Diego this coming Thursday. Hoping to find a great place somewhere along the way...suspecting I can prob get a fantastic Mexican meal somewhere. Thanks in advance.

Chowfreak

Oct 07, 2008
chowfreak in Southwest

Small Party - Best of SF

We are approximately 14-20...not sure on total yet. Thanks!

Small Party - Best of SF

I am an NYC hound and I'm hoping to organize a small party on a Saturday night in June. A group of friends who all will be finding ourselves in SF for a weekend for various reasons. We are 30-somethings. I'm looking for a place where I can book a table, or a small private room to enjoy good wine, food, etc. Hopefully not overly expensive (maybe $50-$60/head). We are up for anything....as long as we can have some good laughs and enjoy great food/drink. Thanks in advance!

Chowfreak

Entertaining in Wine Country

Thanks for this great suggestion. Personally, I prefer cab, zin, and pinot noir, and since i'm organizing....i get to pick! So, please do share the place in Alexander Valley you reference above.

With regards to food.....sounds like Cyrus is the consensus. Is it too refined? Really was hoping to find a rustic/seasonal type place...Cyrus may fit the bill, i'm just not sure. Thanks again and I will report back.