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What do you think of this "forkage fee"? [Moved from Manhattan]

umm, the public does not get to name books after they're published! She (and her publisher) had every right to name her book whatever they wanted, and had the experience that very much warranted that title. I don't understand this snotty takedown of her - just because she has some haughtiness in a bad customer service situation and wrote a snotty blog post, you are all ready to decide she is an unexperienced hack? So weird.
I'm not sticking up for her in this particular situation with the forks at the Breslin, just her role as a professional baker whose skills and experience are well-known in the industry.

Mar 12, 2010
janejane in Not About Food

What do you think of this "forkage fee"? [Moved from Manhattan]

All the forkage fee silliness aside, the woman wrote a book called The Cake Bible. She is a top expert in the baking world - she is not a blogger, or a home baker, she's kind of a legend. I imagine any self-respecting pastry chef would have been pretty psyched for Rose Levy Berenbaum to walk in and offer a slice.

Mar 11, 2010
janejane in Not About Food

Best coffee in New York City?

both despana and tia pol (my favorite tapas place in nyc) will make you a killer cortado. that's if you're looking for a spanish coffee experience.

for the best cups in town, I agree that ninth street espresso, abraco, grumpy, gimme and joe are all your best bets.

Jul 09, 2008
janejane in Manhattan

Dosa Man Still MIA

Try the street vendor project:
http://streetvendor.org/public_html/
I'm sure they'd be able to help you track him down.

Mar 13, 2008
janejane in Manhattan

Where to eat at Chelsea Market?

Don't miss out on the fantastic espresso drinks at the Ninth Street Espresso counter (just next to the middle bank of elevators). Have a cappuccino with your caramel Fat Witch brownie! Green Table's food is wonderful, but unless you snag one of their tiny tables inside their space, it's no fun at all to sit in the corridor amidst the hordes of shoppers. I also like 202, the restaurant inside the Nicole Farhi clothing store at the Ninth Ave. entrance. It's the most full-service, sit-down option, though it gets mobbed at weekend brunch. And agreed, the gelato at Arte del Gelato (connected to the kitchen store) is better than the stuff at the Italian food shop (but their grocery selection is fantastic).

Dec 14, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

Aussie hangouts in NYC?

The folks that run Ruby's (which seems to be the most popular local australian spot in town) just opened Kingswood on w. 10th st in the west village. it's a bit more upscale, really nice room though not a particularly australian menu. but lots of australians hanging out there for sure...

But why take an australian to an australian place? if you went to australia would you want your pal to take you out for pizza and bagels?! ;)

Nov 23, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

Borough Food and Drink - Review

while I can't speak for your experience the other night, the restaurant is undergoing a shift in ownership and concept right now, so these weeks might not be the fairest time to judge the place. I'd give them another month to straighten things out and then go back for a better assessment...

Nov 23, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

Izakaya style Japanese mid-town or chelsea?

try Sake Bar Hagi in midtown (152 W. 49th between 6th and 7th aves). It's a little bit hard to find—look forthe sign, walk down the stairs and ignore the building next door that has the #152 on it. the pickles with miso, the fried sardine salad and $10 pitchers of beer are always great.

Nov 22, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

Best store for fresh hot peppers/chiles?

The wonderful Thai market, Bangkok Center Grocery, on Mosco St. in Chinatown (off Mott, just before it ends at Bowery) always has thai chilies (birds-eye) available. They are in the refrigerator, packaged in little plastic pouches. They are usually mostly green chilies, with a few red ones thrown in there too.

Aug 10, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

San Francisco 22 : New York 0

The previous poster who advised to skip Mexican food in NYC was right – La Esquina is a nice option to have in NYC, but since you are a Californian (I was too at one point), La Esquina will not pass your muster.

But it looks like the list you've compiled now will take you far - that's a great asortment of unique food. Between Fatty Crab, Momofuku and Tia Pol, expect to find some thrilling flavors.

Jul 15, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

A Great Baked Good...vote here:

I recently became an addict of le noeud at the bouley bakery in tribeca - cardamom spiced croissant-like pastry made with hazlenut flour, I believe. It's doughier than a regular croissant but still very buttery, and the spice is fantastic.

Jun 25, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

Any $1.00 food in your neighborhood ???

the vanilla shortbread cookies at city bakery are 3 for a dollar; it's the best deal in the place.

Jun 01, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

Delivery in Carroll Gardens

Wow, things change so fast! I swear I walked by Mancora just last weekend and they were fullly operational. And thanks to Nehna, below, for the Chance update - I really didn't know that they had moved beyond scary fusion mode. I love that I live within blocks and it takes chowhound to keep me updated!

May 18, 2007
janejane in Outer Boroughs

Delivery in Carroll Gardens

Right there with you on Joya. I do not understand why people like the place. Boring and dull, with no complexity of flavor. I get all riled up about that one for some reason. I agree that Em is a better Thai option in the 'hood (they do the hard-to-find dish Kaow Soy, though it's called Chaing Mai noodle on their menu). Nine-D, a newer Thai place on Court isn't all bad either - their dry red chicken curry with green beans is quite good.

I love Chicory through-and-through, definitely a great addition to anyone's delivery needs.

I was crushed when I moved and learned that Mancora, the Peruvian place on Smith, wouldn't deliver down to me at 9th street (their cut-off is Nelson). Wonderful, inexpensive stuff - the steak entree is great, the platanos are sweetly delicious and you get tons of food for your $ - half a chicken for something like $5. In a similar vein, the Cuban place on Smith isn't that all fabulous overall, but I do enjoy getting some of the sandwiches delivered - they travel well and are pretty satisfying.

House of Pizza and Calzone on Union is the best area pizza delivery I think. though I would warn against delivery of their famous deep-fried calzone. NOT a dish that travels well...

Does Chance deliver the dim sum? For some reason that place has always scared me a little...

May 17, 2007
janejane in Outer Boroughs

okonomiyaki?

sake bar hagi is not to be missed. outside of the okonomiyaki (which is called something else on the menu, I believe), make sure to try the sardine & daikon salad.
great place.

May 14, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

Momofuku Ssam?

Agreed! The pork buns at the original momofuku are far better than the ones at Ssam. Skip 'em at Ssam: the over-kewpied slaw performs no favors on the Ssam version. But the brussels sprouts at Ssam are phenomenal, the apple salad is smoky and refreshing all at once, the coffeed redeye gravy that comes with the sliced hams is absurdly good. Really well worth it to go late at night and order adventurously from all over the menu.

Apr 20, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

carroll gardens all-star chow finds

I wouldn't call it a twist on the old standard exactly, just a super high-quality rendition, made with very thickly sliced sullivan st bakery bread. It's not too eggy and never soggy (sometimes it even verges on being a bit *too* dry) and has a satisfying crunchiness to it, since the crust of the bread they use is so dark and crackly. A friend of mine who is equally obsessed with this dish asked the kitchen what they do exactly. They told her that they sprinkle the french toast with powdered sugar throughout its time on the grill, giving it a caramelized sweetness that is not too over the top. I always order it with two extra sides: bacon and the roasted sweet potatoes. A single piece of one of their softer cheeses is a nice accompaniment, too.

Mar 22, 2007
janejane in Outer Boroughs

carroll gardens all-star chow finds

Eh, I say skip le petit if you are going for real food finds. It's a lovely neighborhood brunch spot, in the sense that it's a nice, easy place to go with a few friends. But it kind of ends there for me. Has anyone turned you on yet to the french toast at frankie's 457 (served only on weekends at brunch)? Absolutely amazing - do not miss!

Mar 21, 2007
janejane in Outer Boroughs

carroll gardens all-star chow finds

Does anyone ever experience those prosciutto balls at Joe's to be a bit cold in the center? That is always is a bit disappointing... but I don't really have the nerve to ask for them "well done" or something.

Mar 21, 2007
janejane in Outer Boroughs

carroll gardens all-star chow finds

- Can't believe no one has piped in with the fresh mozzarella from Caputo's on Court! Sometimes, if you get there at the right time, the cheese is still warm. Make sure you get it salted (where they dip the cheese ball in a vat of salty water) and just eat it right when you get out of the store. Other favorites from Caputo's include the mortadella rustica, which is mortadella with bits of proscuitto; honey goat cheese; their tomato focaccia bread, which is really like a doughy mini-pizza; and most of their homemade soups.
- I am still obsessed with the breakfast salad at Chicory - scrambled egg with greens, fried potato, cucumber and feta. Their wheat berry salad is lovely, and most of the sides, like roasted brussel sprouts and cauliflower, are good choices.
- Cafe Scaramouche, way down on Court at Huntington, makes these dulce de leche sandwich cookies which are rolled in coconut. Totally addictive, melt in your mouth crumbly and sweet.
- Ferdinando's is wonderful, when you can catch them open! Thoroughly random hours those guys keep. I have always wanted to order their special sardine pasta, but I always get the panelle sandwich - a weird little chickpea flour fried dough thing on a roll that's been smeared with fresh ricotta and all baked together.

Mar 18, 2007
janejane in Outer Boroughs

B-day dinner party: Les enfants terribles or lil' frankies?

Lil Frankie's is much more than just pizza! Their large appetizer salad is wonderful: a mix of marinated vegetables like beets and green beans along with dressed greens, and their oven-baked specials like lasagna are very good.They have pastas too, and a few more traditional mains like a variation of roasted chicken. Definitely choose lil frankies over les enfant for a large group. I agree that the scene at les enfants is very cool but the food is only so-so and it's too hectic for a nice, long meal.

Mar 18, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

Szechuan peppercorn recipes?

Thanks everyone - great information!
The toasting made my house smell incredible, and grinding it with an equal amount of coarse salt helps to pulverize the peppercorns. I think I will just keep a jar of the toasted salt/pepper combination on the counter at all times, and add it to everything...

Mar 07, 2007
janejane in Home Cooking

Dip for Sweet Potato Fries

Here's a strange but very delicious one:
Mix plain yogurt with a bit of maple syrup, add ground cumin, a dash of cayenne, finely chopped cilantro and salt & pepper to taste.

That unusual flavor combination with the crispy sweet potato is quite incredible! It's good over roasted squash, too.

Mar 05, 2007
janejane in Home Cooking

Szechuan peppercorn recipes?

I just purchsed Szechuan peppercorns for the first time, and would love to hear some ideas as to what to do with them. I tasted one straight from the canister: the sour, citrusy taste came first, followed by a raging, spicy burn on my lips and tongue. I plan to toast and grind them right now, but then what to make for dinner?
I've been looking in some of my cookbooks, but there must be some great ideas out there...
Thanks!

Mar 05, 2007
janejane in Home Cooking

First Date Around West 4th Street Subway Station

I agree that Bellavitae is the best choice, perfect first date spot with lovely wines and small plates. I'd also add Snack Taverna, 'ino and the new Blue Ribbon bar (which would probably be mobbed, actually). For something more casual, the Belgian bar Vol de Nuit, right on W. 4th, serves good mussels & fries and interesting beers.

Feb 22, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

need a lobe of fresh foie gras

I just saw d'artangan foie gras, whole lobes in a vacuum-sealed package, being sold at the red hook fairway the other day.

Feb 08, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

Russ and Daughters vs. Katz's

I think that a sit-down at Katz's and then a stop down the street at Russ and Daughters is your best bet. Sitting down and eating in at Katz's is a lot easier than fighting your way through the throngs at the counter, which is an NYC experience on its own, but can be harrowing! Sit at any of the tables along the left side and towards the back - there is table service and the curmudgeonly waiter will come along. ALL of the sandwiches at Katz's are HUGE - if you don't think you can finish one, the half sandwich and soup option (only available to eat in) is a winner. Just because you don't think you can finish it is no reason to reject it outright!
After lunch, a trip to R&D is necessary - a favorite item of mine, though not one that would travel very well, is the pickled lox with cream. But the any of the whole fish, dried fruits, babka, halvah, bagels and bagel chips would be good to go, packed up real good and brought home to make all your friends jealous.

Feb 02, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

Casa Mono tonight- any recs from recent meals?

I just ate there on Tuesday night, sat at the bar and had a great time talking with our server/bartender. I was with a non-pork-eating friend (horrors!), but we made a fabulous meal out of the bacalo fritters (the aioli is the nicest part of that dish, very subtly orange-flavored), the brussel sprouts, the layered beet and Valderon salad, the sepia a la plancha (a squid-like thing with an herby salsa verde), and the patatas bravas (which frankly, is the one dish here i find to be completely miss-able). The dessert, surprisingly, was the finest moment: a warm chocolate cake with milk choclate ice cream, it was a perfect blend of warm, rich and light all at once. Don't forget the sherry, either - we tried one that was so syrupy and sweet it was like a drug (can't remember the name but I know that it dates from 1927). I love Casa Mono every time I go. The staff is so warm, and we even got to gossip about Top Chef. Enjoy.

Feb 02, 2007
janejane in Manhattan

Chicory Recommendations

That's too bad! I moved recently - I used to live around the corner, now I am a bit farther away closer to Red Hook - so I am obviosuly not as up on the menu as I used to be. Those fries sure were good though...

Dec 02, 2006
janejane in Outer Boroughs

Chicory Recommendations

I find the sandwiches to be hit or miss - I think they've recently revamped the sandwich menu, but they used to use supermarket bread and bad iceberg lettuce - but the best item on that menu is the breakfast salad. It is an obsession of mine lately, it's so good; greens - frisee and romaine I think - tossed with radish, cucmber, cherry tomatoes, tiny cubes of fried potato and a scrambled egg. You can add bacon or sausage if you want, too, which makes it even more fabulous. They also do a decent hamburger, great fried chicken, and I usually dig the salads in the case - the brussel sprouts and beets are reliable. Other not to be missed items at Chicory are the sweet potato fries and the homemade potato chips. Both are super crispy and suprisingly delicious.

Dec 01, 2006
janejane in Outer Boroughs