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old favorites vs. new experiences: please critique my list

Came across this while planning my own itinerary...

King Cakes from Haydel's can be found (for a short time) in Uptown: http://goo.gl/fS8a4j

Dec 29, 2013
Wanda_Gorgonzola in New Orleans

BIG Birthday Adventure for Coolest Chic EVER. - Please Help!

Thanks all! Both Manhattan & Brooklyn folks were generous with the suggestions. Much appreciated.

Went to Sakagura, and it was perfect. The bonus is I now have a great list of new places and a reminder of some I've neglected. Thanks again.

Mar 29, 2013
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

BIG Birthday Adventure for Coolest Chic EVER. - Please Help!

Thanks all! Both Manhattan & Brooklyn folks were generous with the suggestions. Much appreciated.

Went to Sakagura, and it was perfect. The bonus is I now have a great list of new places and a reminder of some I've neglected. Thanks again.

Mar 29, 2013
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Manhattan

BIG Birthday Adventure for Coolest Chic EVER. - Please Help!

Hi Tommy,

Actually, it's hard to reconcile Luger and Yasuda. Period :) ...was giving some frame of reference, but not applying the adjectives in any way.....it's the vibe that I'm after for this 'event'.....

I really appreciate your thoughtful reply....totally added to my ongoing (not so) short list. Thank you.

Mar 16, 2013
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Manhattan

BIG Birthday Adventure for Coolest Chic EVER. - Please Help!

Thanks so much. I really appreciate the consideration! I have an idea, and I'll report back at week's end, on the off chance 'she's' trolling this board :)

Mar 16, 2013
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

BIG Birthday Adventure for Coolest Chic EVER. - Please Help!

I'm coming up short on this one ya'll. The most amazing true renaissance woman's Birthday deserves some sultry, 'underground', exciting deliciousness. She's not into excess, nor are we after an 'eyeball' eating adventure. I need something fun, interesting, maybe 'old new york vibe', maybe new but not trendoid......Please HELP!

Places we like(d): Vinegar Hill House; Calyer; Zenkichi; Sushi Yasuda; I Coppi; Marlow and Sons; Traif (for novelty); Northern Spy...and to show our aging: Ninth St. Market (brunch in the winter); Old Devil Moon (brunch after drinking); Luger (when money didn't mean anything).

I'm posting in Manhattan too. I appreciate any/all ideas; I need something wonderful/hidden/re-discovered....Wouldn't mind any special watering-hole recs too.

Thanks in Advance!

Mar 12, 2013
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

BIG Birthday Adventure for Coolest Chic EVER. - Please Help!

I'm coming up short on this one ya'll. The most amazing true renaissance woman's Birthday deserves some sultry, 'underground', exciting deliciousness. She's not into excess, nor are we after an 'eyeball' eating adventure. I need something fun, interesting, maybe 'old new york vibe', maybe new but not trendoid......Please HELP!

Places we like(d): Vinegar Hill House; Calyer; Zenkichi; Sushi Yasuda; I Coppi; Marlow and Sons (probably most of all and on the regular); Traif (for novelty); Northern Spy...and to show our collective aging: Ninth St. Market (brunch in the winter); Old Devil Moon (brunch after drinking); Luger (when money didn't mean anything).

I'm posting on Outer Boroughs too, of course. I appreciate any/all ideas; I need something wonderful/hidden/re-discovered....Wouldn't mind any special watering-hole recs too.

Thanks in Advance!

Mar 12, 2013
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Manhattan

Trattoria Il Trullo - Avon (Riverdale Farms)

Visiting friends who suggested we try this place....I confess to having an anti strip mall bias, but when in Rome...;)

Four of us started with Fried Squid (I am compelled to order squid, whenever it appears on a menu....even when I think better of it...). It was good. Really good....all flour/no heavy crumbs.....light and delicious, with an interesting 'garnish' of shoe string red onions. Nice. I had to stop myself from polishing of the last handful of what was an outsize portion for like 8 bucks! Also had Napolean style beet salad, layered with goat cheese with bits of fig. Somehow, I thought we were getting figs stuffed with goat cheese, but this was a nice second to the squid. Did I mention that I really like squid? :0)

This place prides itself on house made pasta, and it really seems like they know what they are doing. I rarely order pasta out...just seems like I can do it better at home, but these were worth getting...Ricotta Gnocchi were light...described as 'balls of love LOL. The Pappardelle with wild mushrooms (my choice) were lightly sauced, per my request. While the mushrooms were not as wild as I might have liked, the dish was really very good and the pasta was perfect! The third entree was a special Lobster Ravioli....which actually was LOBSTER ravioli....not the equivalent of pink slime that has become synonymous with this dish....a tad too much vodkaesque sauce kept it from being an absolute score, but I always think everything is over sauced...my friend was totally in love with this dish.

They have a small, somewhat esoteric wine list....We started with a decent Prosecco and then a good 50 dollar red, billed as a 'super tuscan'....

We were too full for desert, but managed to 'choke down' three shots of Grappa and a really good espresso.....while ogling a chocolate souffle at the next table. Next time, and I would go back.

Portions are HUGE yet quality does not seem to suffer.... Service was fine to good, but definitely well meaning, and they suffered our special requests with a smile. All in all, this was a really pleasant surprise.

Nov 18, 2012
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Southern New England

Short Report on Mekong East in one Word: "Meh"

Perfect Assessment, by the Hub Nicole!
Last night:
-Grilled Whole Baby Squid = Not quite fresh/Not quite off irregularly chopped squid. Un-garnished and bland, with a nice sweet sauce, for which I was grateful.
-An order of Summer Rolls were fine, but the peanut sauce light on peanut and heavy on the soy...no discernable hoisin or coconut....I dunno.
-The 'special' pho had none of the promised extras and was serviceable, at best.
-Jasmine tea came in a lovely pot, but it was two teabags that produced a slightly fragrant though tasteless hot water.

The server (can't quite call her a Waiter) was very sweet.

@ZenFoodist - Yes, Mekong Pho is decidedly better, as is the "Vietnamese Restaurant" that is just east of Little Neck Parkway, on Northern.

Aug 26, 2011
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

Tarry Lodge - any recent experiences?

I had a maiden lunch today that was worth the stop. The hostess was accommodating, and the waiter was efficient and not overly friendly. I, personally don't mind old school service, without the smiley "I'm Janie, and I'll be your server today" fake friendliness.

My friend and I both started with the Salumi Salad, which is chopped romaine, with cheese and cured meats....it was slightly overdressed, but very tasty and enough for two. I took half home, although it probably will be soup by tomorrow. Said friend had the pasta bolognese....tagliatelle perfectly cooked, with a rich, delicious bolognese (not under-sauced, as mentioned by another poster) I tasted it and remarked that it's interesting how something so mild could be so flavorful. Her two courses were on the $19 lunch special.

I had the Pesce Mista as my main. A $20 appetizer portion was surprisingly generous in size and really very good. Standouts on the plate were the piquillo pepper stuffed with peeketoe crab; perfect Frutti di Mare and Bacala Mantecato, a creamy, whipped salt cod salad. Unfortunately, the White Beans (which come with a few squares of smoked trout) were underdone. The plate is completed with Sardines over what I think was Israeli Cous Cous. Also very tasty.

I had a nice quartino of red; you could put a gun to my head, and I won't remember what it was....

We wanted to try desert elsewhere, but the bread joint was closed (? Saturday at 4pm?) and the ice cream place up a few blocks was not worth the calories....tubs of nothing special....My friend wound up grabbing a piece of bread pudding from the Columbian Bakery, but she she said it had too much cinnamon....probably should have tried the Panettone Pudding back at Tarry Lodge.

I'd go back, if I'm in the area. No, it is not Babbo or Esca, but it is not trying to be....I'd be happy to have it close to home....

-----
Tarry Lodge
18 Mill St, Port Chester, NY 10573

Nov 13, 2010
Wanda_Gorgonzola in New York State (exc. NYC)

Callicoon area dining?

Where is the Mexican place? Please.

Sep 30, 2010
Wanda_Gorgonzola in New York State (exc. NYC)

Freshest and best Olive Oils?

I'm almost out of a the couple of different olive oils that I keep on hand. Any suggestions for good quality oil. Any aficionados want to weigh in?

Buying online works... or any local (to me = NYC) outlets. I know we are months away from a new harvest, but I'd like the freshest available now. Who vintage dates their bottles? What's the best extra-virgin for sauteing? I've already spent an arm at this summer's farmers markets...would rather not spend the leg :) A good value would be great.....maybe some higher end option for salads/garnish....

I like to keep several different types....spicy, fruity, etc.....but as with wine, I'm into trying something new/different.

Thanks much!

Sep 22, 2010
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Manhattan

Rolling River Cafe Bar Gallery & Inn - Parksville, NY (Sullivan County)

What a find!....Completely lost, and my friend's brand new Droid responds to "nearby restaurants" with this crazy good, absolutely comfortable find-and-a-half. Tables by the river, a two-top on a little porch and indoor seating upstairs and down; we had a totally unexpected blast.

We went with the Greater Soviet theme:

Chebureki (pork & beef pie from Uzbekhistan) $6.75 - Filling and delicious.

Putin's Tears - marinated herring & onions - Sweet little Tapas portion w/ Great Vodka!!! Must get!
on pumpernickel served with a shot of vodka $6.95

Kinkali (Georgian lamb dumplings) $8.95 - Awesome, huge (unidentifiable lamb bits) dumplings in a fantastic broth. - Bring it on, Winter. This will keep me warm! (the dough was a little lumpy, but I still loved this dish)

I'm looking forward to a return trip to try their nice looking Brunch menu, which includes some fine sounding Crepes that all hover around the $5-$6 dollar range. Nice.

Their menu is almost frighteningly varied with a big Sandwich and Panini Section and Entrees that include both Soba Noodles with Shitake and a Rack of Lamb.

The service was good, even with (the very pleasant waitress) having to run up and down a flight of stairs. They were not very busy though, and I think she was working alone. So, it may be choppy, when they are slammed.

They use organic products "when possible" and produce from local farms. And, they keep a rotating gallery of art for sale.....

Rolling River Cafe Gallery Inn - www.rollingriver.net
25 Cooley Road, Parksville - (845) 747-4123

Sep 19, 2010
Wanda_Gorgonzola in New York State (exc. NYC)

Good Prix Fixe on Long Island (preferably western Suffolk)

H20 in Smithtown

Wednesday nights. Three Courses. Including Wine, cost $40. Without wine, $30.

It's been on my list. A colleague highly recommends.

Aug 31, 2010
Wanda_Gorgonzola in New York State (exc. NYC)

Why don't Korean Restaurants pack up leftover Panchan?

I've asked several times, at several different restaurants.....I never get a direct answer, and I never get the Panchan in my bag. I am aware that at some places, it may be a language issue, as I don't speak Korean. I only ask when there is a significant amount left and if there are other (ordered) leftovers.....

Does anyone know if there's a cultural thing of which I am not aware. Is it 'bad form' to send people/guest home?

I know I may sound foolish, but I always feel a little odd not finishing the Panchan, as though I'm not grateful for the 'gift' :)....not to mention the waste factor......

Jun 05, 2010
Wanda_Gorgonzola in General Topics

Roe in Canned Sardines? Is this weird

Googled: Canned Sardines with roe, and I wound up here :) I just opened a can of Moroccan Sardines, and one of these is filled with roe and two globs of unidentified globbiness........Sardines taste fine, and like yours, the roe is dry....I ate around it and left the globs to themselves.......

I once had roe (3 or four years ago) in a can of Bumble bee sardines, but it was way nastier, and I dumped the entire can.

May 19, 2010
Wanda_Gorgonzola in General Topics

Best Greek in Astoria?

Try Christo's. It is a steakhouse, but it is decidedly greek. I've had some very good meals there....white tablecloths....professional waitstaff....Big tables full of Greek men eating lots of good meat. :)

Jan 31, 2010
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

Dining Near Ikea

I agree on your estimation of the service jdf, but my brunch was actually too big to finish: 2 biscuits (with very good gravy), nice (seemed like two) scrambled eggs and a large pc. of fried chicken breast.... My friend ate the chicken, with her bacon and eggs....w/ one coffee and one hot chocolate - $26 seemed reasonable to me, considering the quality of the food.

Jan 31, 2010
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

Cooking with Jazz reopens in a few weeks!

Tonight was my first time (back) since the (re) opening, and the kitchen was in top form! Delicious, fresh fried oysters....unbelievably good fried Eggplant Appetizer (I could eat this every day)....Deeply rich, perfectly spicy Seafood Gumbo.....Tasso, Shrimp and cream on pasta. I was not a believer in this last dish, but it was fantastic.

He has a way with seafood....everything was just perfectly cooked, when so many places overcook fish, it made it all the more special.

Nice Jazz Quartet.....3 Hurricanes and a Heineken.....$85 bucks, including a 20% tip + a Five Spot for the musicians. And, I have lunch for tomorrow.

We are two very happy, well fed customers. Live Music, Great Food, Fantastic Time in QUEENS!!! We'll be back, within the week.

-----
Cooking with Jazz
179-22 Union Turnpike, Queens, NY 11366

Jan 28, 2010
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

Recommendations? Start with oysters on half shell, followed by steak

That is GENIUS.....and then maybe Dressler, for a Peach Parfait and/or glass of St. Germain.....a trifecta, I say. :)

Aug 06, 2009
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

Little Saigon Cuisine, Little Neck, Anyone Been?

I have been there several times and have had decent meals....good seafood soup, porkchop over rice, sugarcane shrimp....and (from the chinese side of the menu) salt baked prawn were very tasty. Tried their Bun Bo, Pho and Goi Cuon (sp?); none were life changing, but all were absolutely serviceable. I think it's a welcome addition to that area. The service was really friendly on my first few visits, but that particular waiter has not been there of late.....still fine.

Mar 24, 2009
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

Port Washington Eats?

Does anyone have a recent report on Chez Noelle? I have not been in about 2 years, but I've had some very enjoyable meals there.....
Solid....French.

Aug 25, 2008
Wanda_Gorgonzola in General Tristate Archive

Agar agar in Williamsburg??

Sunac on Union @Keap......

Jul 13, 2008
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

ISO Slider Buns in Nassau County

Dinner Rolls work nicely. Supermarket or Zorns 10 cents each......(East Meadow/Bellmore and maybe Farmingdale locations).

Jul 02, 2008
Wanda_Gorgonzola in General Tristate Archive

Review of new Korean bbq buffet in Flushing

Thanks ScottK. Too bad though.......Charcoal really makes a difference for me....Stopped into the Korean Restaurant at about 248th and Northern on Sunday. They have charcoal, and the meat was excellent.....unfortunately, the panchan were uninspired. Service was very good.

BTW, Puppimus, my wand is currently broken. Everything keeps turning into KRAFT!

Jul 01, 2008
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

Review of new Korean bbq buffet in Flushing

Just Gas or charcoal too?

Jun 30, 2008
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

spanish in norwalk

LaPaella is not closing. I'm told (by a friend of the owner) that they are opening Taberna on the outskirts of Bridgeport. It will be more Nuevo/Pan Latino. I have not seen the sign myself, but marketing never seemed to be their strong suit; I wouldn't be surprised if it does not reference the new/different location. They sure can cook though! And, I love the wine selection too. Great Place!

Jun 28, 2008
Wanda_Gorgonzola in General Tristate Archive

Where to buy humanely-raised/organic/anti-biotic-free meat?

Fairway and Waldbaums both carry D'Artangan chicken, although the latter only seems to have them sporadically. D'Artangan has other great looking stuff on their website, but I don't know if they have a minimum; I don't get meat delivered.

Try St. Marks tonight. Maybe you'll get lucky w/ Dines. Ask him for Ground Lamb!

Jun 26, 2008
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

Where to buy humanely-raised/organic/anti-biotic-free meat?

I was there too. Sorry; I should have posted. So, I called Dines now and they say that they are low on product. He could not tell me when they'd be at the JH Greenmarket. However, he said that Mr. Dines is at the St. Marks Church Farmspot (Thursday, but he could not tell me the times) and would sell retail (it's a CSA), IF he has anything left.........Not very helpful, I know........

Meanwhile, I've been getting a D'Artangan chicken weekly and hitting trader Joe's occasionally for their organic ground beef, which I find surprisingly beefy tasting.

Jun 26, 2008
Wanda_Gorgonzola in Outer Boroughs

Coconut Cupcakes in Santa Barbara

crushcakes.com

At long last, cupcakes! Any good? I never did get to send her a treat.....

Jun 19, 2008
Wanda_Gorgonzola in California