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Four Day NYC trip coming from Bay Area with kids

I looooove the Doughnut Plant. Go in the morning, because by the afternoon they're often sold out of many varieties for the day.

If you're going to be staying in Chelsea and want something that's delicious without being adventurous, I recommend Westville (there's one on 18th between 7th/8th Avenues). It's fairly straight-up diner/American food, but made with good ingredients, and with an awful lot of interesting vegetable side dishes. Also a very tasty slice of blueberry pie!

Jul 12, 2012
Stella in Manhattan

Burgers in Soho/Tribeca north?

I'm changing jobs, which means moving from the Flatiron District to the western edge of Soho. Ever since going on the Paleo diet I've made burgers without the bun a go-to food, so I eat an awful lot of them.

I've been spoiled in Flatiron with NY Burger Co (I realize it's not a great burger, but it is more than good enough for a workday lunch), Westville Chelsea, and sometimes Shake Shack. So I'm hoping there's at least one place near my new office that I can hit up regularly for a well-cooked burger.

I know Kitchenette has a good one and City Hall has a great one, but those are a bit too far away to be regular options (new office is close to the Holland Tunnel). Points for any and all suggestions, and extra points for those that are reasonably priced!

Jul 12, 2012
Stella in Manhattan

Flatiron District Restaurants for lunch

No, not at all. I've never had an issue with walking in at lunch.

Dec 08, 2011
Stella in Manhattan

Suggestions for Sweet Sixteen in Lower Bucks or Northeast Philly?

My niece is turning 16 and wants a party but her parents (understandably) don't want to spend gobs of money on one. They also live in Bensalem, as do most of the family and friends, and would prefer to hold the party somewhere that isn't more than a 20-minute drive away.

Any suggestions for restaurants with private rooms (for about 40) that allow for dancing and have decent (I'm not hoping for great) food at a reasonable price ($30 or under per person without tax/tip/beverages -- lunch or dinner is OK)? I live in NYC so I can't offer too many recommendations based on whose food I've personally tasted, but I've so far told her to look at Viva in Feasterville, Piccolo Trattoria (the only one I've actually tried myself) and Joseph's Grille in Langhorne, and the Yardley Inn.

The only cuisine I think she'd definitely veto is Indian, though she's not too crazy about Chinese either (our family is Chinese and I think she gets tired of the food). Mexican would be a HUGE bonus but I'm not expecting too much in that vein!

Jun 02, 2010
Stella in Philadelphia

great south-east asian restaurants (except japanese)

I like Jaya (in Chinatown) for Malaysian food. I've visited my mother's family in Malaysia and I would say the food at Jaya is as close as I have come to replicating that experience. My older brother, who was raised in Malaysia, is quite happy to eat at Jaya when he visits me in the city. Their renditions of traditional dishes like mee goreng and mango chicken are very good.

Apr 28, 2010
Stella in Manhattan

Wedding gift-worthy restaurant in SF or Napa?

I'm attending the wedding of a couple who live in SF and would like to give them a gift certificate for a meal in their home city, or maybe in Napa. I'd like to spend about $200 and would like that to cover dinner for two with wine. The couple have fairly adventurous tastes, so I would not rule out any particular cuisine. I'd like it to be a place that feels special, not a neighborhood joint that they can go to any time.

I'm on the East Coast, so I'm utterly clueless as to what my choices are. Help?

Feb 27, 2010
Stella in San Francisco Bay Area

Delivery sushi in Soho/Tribeca?

My office moved from the Flatiron District to the border of Soho and Tribeca (Canal/Varick), and I desperately miss ordering sushi for lunch on a regular basis. I've tried a few places (Zutto, Doo Zo, Okami, Okinawa) and they've all been okay, not that good. I used to like Edo on 17th between Broadway and 5th, if that's any indication of what I'm hoping for.

Do I have to give up on my sushi lunches, or is there somewhere reasonably priced that I'm missing?

Apr 16, 2009
Stella in Manhattan

49 Grove -- anyone been to an event there?

I'm looking for a venue for my 2009 wedding. A couple of days ago I visited 49 Grove in the West Village (name is the address) and liked the space very much. The menu sounds pretty good too, but of course food that sounds good isn't always food that tastes good. I'm going to a tasting next month, but was wondering if any Hounds had been to an event there and could comment on the quality of the food. I'm desperately keeping my fingers crossed that it's great or at least good -- the prices are very reasonable by Manhattan wedding standards and I'd love to get that part of the planning out of the way!

Jul 17, 2008
Stella in Manhattan

union square dinner recs for friends who don't like anything "weird"

If Via Emilia is not too far (and I third the recommendation), then Lunetta wouldn't be too far, either, and it's delightful.

I recently took my thirteen-year-old niece (who eats almost anything) and her best friend (who eats almost nothing) there. My niece's friend was able to find things she liked (the duck agnolotti went over incredibly well, as did the meatballs in roasted garlic tomato sauce), and my niece, my boyfriend, and I were able to enjoy ourselves and not feel like we were eating lame food to cater to the picky eater.

Jan 08, 2008
Stella in Manhattan

What to order at Blue Fin?

I'm going to a client dinner at Blue Fin this week. I've heard mixed reviews of the place and was wondering if anyone had any recommendations. I'll eat pretty much anything as long as it's good!

Jan 07, 2008
Stella in Manhattan

One more Perilla review

Thanks for that review -- I think you may have just decided me on where to go for my birthday later this month.

Jun 01, 2007
Stella in Manhattan

Best not-necessarily-authentic sushi, UES?

So sue me, I like "crazy" sushi -- interesting maki combinations, weird sauces, and all. Most of the sushi posts I've seen here are about the more authentic sushi, which I do enjoy, but my heart belongs to crazy maki.

Now that I've outed myself as a sushi Philistine, where can I go to get my fix on the Upper East Side? I'm leaving my beloved borough of Brooklyn (where I've been a devotee of Osaka and Cube 63 for a while) for the east '80s and I'm hoping I can find rolls there that I like as much as the ones I get here in Brooklyn.

Atmosphere totally irrelevant. To me it's all about the food.

Apr 08, 2007
Stella in Manhattan

DineIn Brooklyn- any sleepers?

If my boyfriend had been with me when I went to Waterfront on Wednesday, I would TOTALLY have gone for the Pig-Out for 2. I'm jealous.

As it is, I ended up having the homemade smoked salmon, buffalo burger, and the bread pudding. Smoked salmon -- very good. Burger -- good. Bread pudding -- outstanding.

Mar 23, 2007
Stella in Outer Boroughs

Dine In Brooklyn restaurant's menus

I went to Five Front last night and was disappointed. I've had good meals there before (both from previous DIB menus and from the regular menu), but this was just...lacking in flavor. I had the lamb meatballs with lemon sauce, which were decent but lacking in nice meaty flavor, almost like turkey meatballs. Followed it up with the pan-sauteed perch over peas and yellow and green beans. The beans weren't bad -- crispy and tasty. But the fish itself was bland, so was the potato cake it came with.

Got to the hazelnut chocolate cake with caramel sauce for dessert and thought, "Okay, my meal wasn't so great, but the dessert will be good, it's always good here." It wasn't. Again, it was just eh for me. I was really hoping for more rich chocolaty flavor out of the cake.

So, I wasn't thrilled. I had a much better DIB meal the day before at Waterfront Ale House -- very tasty house-made smoked salmon, a big ol' burger, and their excellent bread pudding with whiskey sauce. Not good for the waistline, but very good on the taste buds!

Mar 23, 2007
Stella in Outer Boroughs

Lunch in Brooklyn

I too enjoy Downtown Atlantic, and the vibe would be just nice enough for a client, casual but not seedy.

I don't know that I'd take a client to Waterfront Ale House. Love the food, but the atmosphere is very dive-bar. Could freak out a client.

Mar 12, 2007
Stella in Outer Boroughs

Workaday Flatiron/Chelsea lunch

I see there's another post for lunch near the Flatiron but that seems to be for a higher price point, so I figured I'd start here instead of hijacking.

Anyway, I am getting bored with my options. I love the Shake Shack when it's open, but I can rarely get away from my desk long enough to stand in line. (Plus I can't eat too many Shack burgers or I'll puff out like a balloon.) I order lots of delivery sushi from Edo or Hanami, but I'm starting to get apoplexy realizing how much money I spend on lunch every month. I like Rickshaw but I'm getting a little bored with it. New York Burger Co. is a little too heavy for midday for me.

Help me find more tasty, quick takeout lunches in the vicinity of 23rd/5th! Under $10, healthy, and/or delivery available even better.

Mar 12, 2007
Stella in Manhattan

ISO: FRESH PORCINI MUSHROOMS

Garden of Eden occasionally has Meyer lemons, but not always.

Feb 21, 2007
Stella in Outer Boroughs

BROOKLYN HEIGHTS::CLOSED::PALMIRA, KAPODOKYA, MICHAEL'S STEAK~OPENED::LE PETIT MARCHE, AFICIANADA, MAESTRO

Yeah, I've been to Taze and it is pretty much Kapadokya renamed (with the prices dropped a little and a slightly nicer decor, both good things).

The only thing I could tell that was different is that the "Kapadokya Special" is gone from the menu, which is sad because I liked that dish!

Feb 17, 2007
Stella in Outer Boroughs

Best Wings in Brooklyn

Yeah, it's definitely open. I peeked in on my last Target run a couple of weeks ago and it seemed to be doing a pretty brisk business.

Should have stuck with my original plan to go there tonight and not let the merely sort-of-bad weather deter me. I ended up ordering wings from Pig-N-Out and boy, was I disappointed. Something was totally off about the flavor, and the sides I ordered (grilled corn and baked beans) were flavorless and flavor-off, respectively.

As for Quaker Steak, I only lived in Pgh for 8 months, and I was always more than a little skeptical of any place calling itself "Steak and Lube"...should I not have been?

Dec 23, 2006
Stella in Outer Boroughs

Best Wings in Brooklyn

I loved the B-Dub when I lived in Pittsburgh.

Anyone been yet, now that it's finally open? I'm hoping nothing's been lost in translation.

Dec 21, 2006
Stella in Outer Boroughs

Brooklyn New Year's Eve dinner?

My boyfriend and I are planning on Quercy in Cobble Hill. 4 courses, $65. I went there for NYE with a friend 3 years ago and enjoyed it very much.

Bouillabaisse 126 is doing a $45 four-course menu that sounds pretty good as well (see OpenTable.com for details).

Dec 19, 2006
Stella in Outer Boroughs

Chestnut

I finally made it yesterday for my first brunch. I, too, had the salt cod with roasted egg -- very, very good. The flavor of the fish was strong, but not overwhelming. The complimentary breads with homemade jam were wonderful, particularly the blueberry jam and the chocolate-chip-raspberry scone. I'll be back.

Dec 04, 2006
Stella in Outer Boroughs

Newish bakery on Atlantic Avenue

On a morning run a couple of weeks ago I passed by a new-looking bakery on the south side of Atlantic -- can't remember the cross streets exactly but they might have been Bond and Hoyt. I think the name of the place started with a B.

When I passed by the place, it was decorated with pumpkins and other fall decor, but that's probably not the case now.

Given my oh-so-vague description, anyone been to this place and is it any good?

Dec 04, 2006
Stella in Outer Boroughs

Little Bistro closed?

That was fast...can't say as I'm crying over it. I did enjoy their calamari, but I recall the hanger steak being rubbery, and everything was overpriced.

Dec 01, 2006
Stella in Outer Boroughs

Lunetta on Smith

Okay, maybe not a pastry chef, but at least some kind of house-made dessert. (Hell, even non-house-made desserts brought in from a local bakery. The One Girl biscotti were not bad, but not really satisfying at the end of a meal.) Taku managed to do it (and plenty of other small neighborhood places do) -- why not in this incarnation of the restaurant?

Dec 01, 2006
Stella in Outer Boroughs

Lunetta on Smith

I've been twice and enjoyed it -- I too liked the penne with lamb ragu and ricotta, and the orecchiette with sausage is also very good. I thought the branzino was good but nothing to write home about.

One bummer: the dessert menu, or lack thereof. I went on opening night and there were several desserts listed, but my date and I were told we could only have either Il Lab gelato or biscotti from One Girl Cookies. When I last visited on Wednesday night, those two items were the only ones on the dessert menu. So I take it there's no pastry chef. I'm bummed, because I really enjoyed the chocolate pot de creme at Taku and also because the portions at Lunetta are just small enough that you'd be interested in dessert after dinner, and somehow a couple of scoops of gelato isn't quite what I'm looking for.

Dec 01, 2006
Stella in Outer Boroughs

Babu on MacDougal still open?

The last couple of times I have passed by Babu on MacDougal, it has looked dark and didn't seem like it was open. Was I hallucinating? I hope so, as I really enjoyed the one experience I'd had there!

Sep 16, 2006
Stella in Manhattan

Is "Sweet Melissa" in Brooklyn worth the trip??

I enjoy Sweet Melissa's, and haven't had a bad experience there in several years of going there. However, I wouldn't bother coming out from Manhattan -- there are similarly good bakeries in Manhattan that wouldn't require a trek for you. A solid neighborhood place, but not unique.

Sep 05, 2006
Stella in Outer Boroughs

OMG!! Taku closed for good

Eeek! I just discovered yesterday that their website said "closed until late September." I truly hope Taku doesn't succumb to the 116 Smith curse. While I wouldn't mind an excellent Mediterranean place, I feel like we have enough of that in Brooklyn, where great Japanese home cooking is much harder to find.

Please, Taku, don't go!

Sep 05, 2006
Stella in Outer Boroughs

singapore chili crab festival

I tried to go, but the lines were insane and I wasn't anywhere near the front of the line when the crab ran out. Not a great experience, but maybe it could have been had I gone earlier.

Aug 03, 2006
Stella in Outer Boroughs