howdini's Profile

Title Last Reply

Best Seafood Bets

A thousand thanks for not changing it, rendering my comment meaningless [l hate when that happens]!

Apr 20, 2015
howdini in Manhattan
1

Best Seafood Bets

Dos leeches is my limit ;)

Apr 20, 2015
howdini in Manhattan
1

Best Grand Sichuan

l second loratliff, esp. on the quick delivery: l order dinner from them regularly when l'm at work [Stanton St.], and l swear, sometimes it seems it gets to me before l even hit "place order" on seamless.

l'm a huge fan of their Spicy Empress Chicken: whoever this spicy empress is, l'd love to meet her, becuz hooboy, is her chicken delish. Really crunchy chicken tidbits with nice heat, with the usual red chiles, peanuts, and, most impressively, some kind of larger orange chile that's been deep fried, so it's crunchy and spicy and just terrific. l've only had it delivered, and it travels surprisingly well; l can only imagine how much better it is when eaten in the restaurant.

Apr 20, 2015
howdini in Manhattan
2

Real Sichuan food in Bay Ridge

Oh man, thanks for the reminder: that beef with cumin flavor is incredible, and l haven't tried a bunch of the other dishes you mentioned. Time to revisit!

Apr 15, 2015
howdini in Outer Boroughs

Real Sichuan food in Bay Ridge

l've posted about it here

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9763...

and here:

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9884...

Unless they've made some serious changes, it's tremendously disappointing. l think they've recently changed their name, too.

Apr 15, 2015
howdini in Outer Boroughs

A Tale of Two Sittings: Ma Peche v. Oda House

I haven't tried OTG yet, tho I have been wanting to...thanks for the recs there.

I've had the pikhali trio twice now, and thought it was very good both times, especially the eggplant one, and I'm not the biggest fan of eggplant. That lamb stew is definitely a winner, and I had the Georgian salad again last night: again delicious.

Apr 09, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

A Tale of Two Sittings: Ma Peche v. Oda House

Thanks for the tip!

Apr 09, 2015
howdini in Manhattan
1

A Tale of Two Sittings: Ma Peche v. Oda House

Yeah, the acharuli would've been overkill, and also my gf isn't into the raw-egg-on-top thing. The mtsvani lobio took care of the bean requirement, and dipping it in the juices from the green beans took it to higher heights.

I never knew that about trout! I've had it many times in the past, but it's always been a thin filet of brook trout, I guess, nothing like salmon.

Apr 09, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

A Tale of Two Sittings: Ma Peche v. Oda House

It was the best of times, it was the worst…actually, both times were pretty good, but one was far better than the other. Last Thursday I ate at Ma Peche for the first time, joined by my son [a chef in training], and a friend who was visiting from SF. The next night I had dinner with my gf at Oda House, the third dinner l’ve eaten there.

I’ve heard so much about Ma Peche, it’s on so many hound’s “Best of the Month” lists, that I figured it was a pretty safe bet that I’d get an excellent meal there. Well, it was pretty good, but I’d hesitate to call it excellent. We had:
-Spicy cod fritters
-Pork bun
-Fried shrimp
-Smoked trout with English pea puree
-cabbage pancake with short rib, shrimp, bonito
-Habanero fried chicken

The pork bun I’m well familiar with, having had it on numerous occasions at the Noodle Bar and Ssam; it was delicious, as always. The cod fritters were good, with decent heat, but lacked the crispy outside that I was expecting. Smoked trout was a bit of a disappointment, as the flavor was ok, but it didn’t taste smoky in the least, and the skin, while it looked nice and crispy, was pretty soft. If I hadn’t been told, I would have sworn that it was salmon that I was eating, as the trout meat and skin looked exactly like salmon in the place’s lighting [and I’m still not entirely convinced that it wasn’t salmon]. The puree of English peas was very good, though. Fried shrimp were also very good, fried in their shells with no breading, rendering them edible in their entirety, their heads infused with wasabi, but again, they would definitely have benefited from another minute in the fryer, as the shells and legs weren’t crispy enough. The cabbage pancake was the standout of the meal: nice textures, and full of big, wonderful umami. Habanero fried chicken was good, but it, too, lacked crispy skin, and I got the short end of the stick in terms of the pieces I got: both turned out to be breast meat, and were kinda dry. I thought that the heat level was good, but my son had a complaint: in his opinion, if something is advertised as “habanero [xxx],” it should be tear-your-head-off fiery; I can see where he’s coming from on this. Overall assessment: there seemed to be a tragic lack of crispiness that evening.

The next night, Friday, my gf and l went back to Oda House, where we’d eaten dinner with her two teenage daughters the week before. That was my second dinner there, my gf’s first, and it impressed the hell out of her (that night we had the pikhali trio, imeruli [the flat yogurt dough bread with cheese baked into it] and chicken skewers). At this meal we ordered:

Georgian salad with walnuts [basic green salad with fresh basil, ground walnuts and Georgian spices]
Mtsvani lobio [green beans cooked with white onions, fresh tomatoes and herbs]
Chakapuli [grass-fed lamb stew cooked with tarragon, mint, scallions, parsley, cilantro and white wine]
Mukuzani [a dry Kakhetian red wine]
Pelamushi [traditional Georgian dessert of grape juice cooked with wheat and corn flour, covered in chocolate sauce]
Ideali [honey-walnut cake, iced with cooked condensed milk]

l won’t go into too much detail, except to say that every single dish we had was absolutely wonderful, including the wine, which had a very interesting flavor l’ve not tasted before [don’t ask me to describe it, as l’m not good with wine descriptors]. The standout for me was the salad: I likes me a good salad, but I’m rarely blown away by one. This one blew me away: the ground walnuts and light vinaigrette were so good, I just didn’t want to stop eating it. I was terribly sad when we finished it.

The chef, Maia Acquaviva, was seated next to us, fooling around on an iPad, and we got into a nice conversation with her about Georgia and other Georgian restaurants in town [she used to work with the chef/owner of We Are Georgian on King’s Hwy in Bkln]. She comped two desserts for us, the pelamushi and ideali: the former has the consistency of firm jello, and tastes like the grape juice that I had when I was growing up, just fantastically grape-y. That it was covered in chocolate sauce definitely didn’t detract from it. The latter was a honey cake with three walnut halves sticking up out of it: a light, moist, delicious cake. Neither dessert was overly sweet, which made them perfect for my taste.

The contrast between the two restaurants was pretty marked: l thought that the flavors, overall, of Oda House were far superior to those of Ma Peche. I don’t why it took me so long to get to Oda House, as it’s only a couple blocks from me, but l’m glad l did, as I’ll be a regular there now.

Apr 08, 2015
howdini in Manhattan
1

Best Dishes of 2015

Oh, that sounds great! That's the new P&T on Canal, yes?

Apr 06, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

crawfish boil

lf Duck's Eatery still does their Thursday night crawfish boil, it's worth trying.

Apr 03, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

Lets Talk Wings

l can't vouch for these, but it's an interesting list compiled by Andrew Zimmer:

http://www.thrillist.com/eat/new-york...

Apr 03, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

Pommes Frites and Sushi Park destroyed in east village blast

NOOOOOOOOO

Apr 02, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

Excellent lunch today at Haldi in Curry Hill -- Hemant Mathur's new Kolkata-themed restaurant

Thanks for the info. The only miss l've had at MM is one of their Chinese-lndian fusion dishes, a kind of sweet-and-sour chicken thing: it was pretty blah. Everything else l've had there has been good to excellent.

Apr 02, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

Excellent lunch today at Haldi in Curry Hill -- Hemant Mathur's new Kolkata-themed restaurant

Did he happen to mention when the menu change at Malai is happening?

Apr 02, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

Pommes Frites and Sushi Park destroyed in east village blast

l was just about to say that...l wanted to go to Stage yesterday, but couldn't get up past the middle of the block between 6th & 7th St., so l opted for double cooked pork at Hot Kitchen. lt was ok.

Apr 01, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao (Flushing)....Any Better Successors?

Even the greatest of magi need to keep abreast of the latest developments!

Mar 30, 2015
howdini in Outer Boroughs

Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao (Flushing)....Any Better Successors?

Ooo, that sounds great! l usually go to Shanghai Heping: how do you think 456 stacks up against it?

Mar 30, 2015
howdini in Outer Boroughs

Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao (Flushing)....Any Better Successors?

"chrysanthemum fish"?

What type of magic is this?

Mar 30, 2015
howdini in Outer Boroughs
1

Pommes Frites and Sushi Park destroyed in east village blast

lt was East Noodle/Robatayaki.

Mar 27, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

Pommes Frites and Sushi Park destroyed in east village blast

Yes! l just heard that a little bit ago.

Mar 27, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

Pommes Frites and Sushi Park destroyed in east village blast

l live right around the corner. l know people who live right on that block. l'm worried for the residents, the businesses, the neighborhood. This is a restaurant discussion board, so this is where l express my regret and worry for the loss of local restaurants.

Just sayin.

Client loves Cheese - where to take her

So sorry...l hate to hear stories like this.

Mar 27, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

Pommes Frites and Sushi Park destroyed in east village blast

Oh that just adds to the terribleness.

Mar 27, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

Pat La Frieda vs NYC steak houses

Ha! "Threaten with flame."

Mar 24, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

Pat La Frieda vs NYC steak houses

Really? l had the 48-day tomahawk at Costata a couple months back, and it was revelatory, the best tasting steak l ever had.

Or were you making a zombie joke that l missed?

Mar 24, 2015
howdini in Manhattan
1

Bereket Houston St...closed?

Ha! lndeed!

Mar 23, 2015
howdini in Manhattan

Bereket Houston St...closed?

lt was always exactly the same: excellent. Squirt that lemon wedge in, and it was well nigh perfection.

Mar 23, 2015
howdini in Manhattan
1

Bereket Houston St...closed?

A-men to that!

Mar 23, 2015
howdini in Manhattan
1

Bereket Houston St...closed?

l work right around the block; l miss it terribly. The doner and the lentil soup were staples in my after-work rotation.

Mar 22, 2015
howdini in Manhattan