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I think he has a good point. You can't assume that a restaurant, simply because it is world renowned and extravagant, is automatically good.

I'm glad that he came in with a bit more clairvoyance and objectivity, rather than automatically fawn over it like so many other restaurant reviewers (both casual and professional) seem to do in these situations - not just for Masa but for other renowned restaurants.

Jun 14, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

The Beagle - loved it!

shared it - but still felt jipped. The pairing boards are a shame because a lot of tasty looking stuff (pig head, lamb neck, etc) are on that. We thought about asking them if we could order just the proteins w/out the spirits (we were drinking cocktails anyway), but thought it might come off as cheap and unreasonable.

O well

Jun 06, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

The Beagle - loved it!

Perhaps I should have ordered more carefully, but I found the food there to be very ambitious, but lacking in execution. I thought the crab salad w/endive was overpowered by the bottarga - maybe they should have just listed it as "Bottarga salad".

The pairing board concept is cute, but it doesn't work. I had the pig head pairing - and while the pig head itself was lovely, if it was meant to be eaten with the shot of rum, it doesn't work, as the rum just kills the palate. I wish they had the option of removing the shot of booze and knock the price down a few dollars.

The main course of mackerel was well cooked and seasoned, but I was a bit disappointed by the amount of fish that they served. Mackerel is such an insanely cheap fish, but they were stingy with the portions.

It's a cute spot with a good pedigree in the kitchen - i'll definitely be back, and use your review to order better.

Jun 05, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

STEER CLEAR LIST - Worst Meal You've Had in the Last Six Months

Fedora was easily the worst meal i've had in the past several years, let alone 6 months. Just terribly bland/greasy stodge, overpriced, crowded, loud, and careless service.

I had the pork sandwich, which tasted of nothing but oil and mayonaise, and the accompanying shoe string fries were burnt. The fried chicken was rubbery and under seasoned - and the fact that they leave the claw intact and serve it in an undersized bowl makes it impossible to cut into and eat. I also really disliked the crispy pigs head, as it was also under seasoned and terribly greasy. I think we ate like 25% of what was on our plates - the waitress either didn't notice this or didn't care, as she didn't make a comment (like any good restaurant should).

239 W 4th St, New York, NY 10014

Jun 01, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Where to Find Whole Roast Pig?

I know its not in the outer boroughs, but Mooncake Foods (in Manhattan) does whole pig roasts.

May 31, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Outer Boroughs

Need "beautiful place with good crowd" like Buddakan for out-of-town guest

Hotel Griffou

Have fun mingling with the B&T :)

Hotel Griffou
21 W 9th St, New York, NY 10011

May 24, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Hell's Kitchen International Food Festival This Weekend

The vendors are basically the 'B-Team' of Hells Kitchen. No representation from the better HK restaurants like Ardesia, La Silhouette, Pure Thai Shophouse, Esca, Danji, Casellula, etc

Ill pass.

401 W 52nd St, New York, NY 10019

402 West 43rd Street, New York, NY 10036

510 W 52nd St, New York, NY 10019

346 W 52nd St, New York, NY 10019

Pure Thai Cookhouse
766 9th Ave, New York, NY 10019

La Silhouette
362 W 53rd St, New York, NY 10019

May 12, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Brazilian Midtown - Emporium vs Via Brasil vs Ipanema

Ipanema has pretty good moqueca and one of the better fejoidas i've had in the city. Also, their bife a portuegesa (sirloin steak in a butter sauce topped w a fried egg) is REDONK.

13 W 46th St, New York, NY 10036

May 05, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Anything new and exciting in midtown east?

Tenpenny is pretty good. A bit pricey and heavy-handed, but the food is pretty tasty, and ostensibly seasonal and modern.

16 E 46th St, New York, NY 10017

May 03, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Celeb/Top Chef Near the Waldorf?

Angelo Sosa's Social Eatz is fairly close (walkable from your hotel) at 53rd St between 2nd and 3rd ave. Decent, Asian fusion bar snacks, burgers, tacos, etc and definitely will fit your price range.

Both of Harold Deiterlie's restaurants, Perilla and Kin Shop are awesome, and worth the journey down to the West Village.

9 Jones Street, New York, NY 10014

Kin Shop
469 6th Ave, New York, NY 10011

Social Eatz
232 E 53rd St, New York, NY 10022

Apr 22, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

My dad loves little-Italy style red sauce Italian, hate fancy . . . I am the opposite

Aroma Kitchen and Wine Bar?

Mar 25, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan


It was open when I went last week.

Mar 17, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Le Bernardin Valentine's Day Tasting Menu

lobster was decent - very well cooked but didn't really stand out that much. I didn't mind the bacon however.

I thought the most successful dishes were the scallop slivers and the langoustines. Those scallops were the freshest and cleanest scallops i've ever tasted, and the foie gras w/langoustine was an absolutely brilliant combination of flavors. And the langoustine was just perfectly cooked - so so tender and buttery. Also loved the amuse of shrimp in sambal foam - the shrimp, which 99% of restaurants cook to rubber, were perfectly tender.

I think maybe they ran out of halibut, because they served monkfish instead (even though its listed on the menu as halibut), but it was still a very successful dish. I thought the least successful dish was the turbot - it was really 'muddy' flavored. The best part of the dish was the black truffle custard. Also the vacherin, while very very pretty, just didn't work for me.

The uni-caviar dish, while very delicate and refined, was just OK. I found myself yearning for the uni spaghetti at Marea instead.

Hate to say it, but while it was all in all a great dinner, it didn't wow me as much as I thought it would. I'd rather have dinners at places like Marea and Momofuku Ko, which together would add up to about the same price. I understand that Le Bernardin is about restraint and ultra refined food, but I just wasn't overly excited about the majority of the dishes.

Momofuku Ko
163 1st Ave, New York, NY 10003

240 Central Park South, New York, NY 10019

Feb 12, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Le Bernardin Valentine's Day Tasting Menu

i was there. ive got pics and menu description up on my flickr:

Feb 12, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

First Date, East Village, Degustation?

Apiary is great for first dates. It's solid food that's not too "out there", but still delicious. Also, the vibe is nice, but isn't overly romantic (which could be off-putting for a first date). I think Degustation would be a little too... stuffy for a first. Also, since you're sitting side by side, you can't carry on a conversation quite as well if you were seated across the table from him/her.

Jan 31, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Thai food for 25 high school kids - midtown?

I immediately thought of Pongsri as well. They have a huge back dining room which could definitely fit 25 ppl at a time. The food is very very poor however.

244 W 48th St, New York, NY 10036

Jan 19, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Spotted Pig Burger - Frozen Patty???

maybe it was for staff meal? hard to believe they would buy their burgers from another restaurant or vendor.

Jan 18, 2011
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Panettone - fresh if possible

Piccolo Cafe has it

Dec 20, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Restaurant Near Radio City for Plain Eater

Bills Bar and Burger

Dec 09, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Luke’s Lobster – Delicious Lobster Rolls in the East Village

Count me in as a fan. While I don't mind mayo on my lobster rolls, I particularly like Luke's Lobster free approach because it tastes much cleaner - you get the full, beautiful taste of lobster with no extra fuss. They also use *only* claw meat (most restaurants get away with using both tail and claw) which makes for a much more tender bite.

Finally, for what it's worth, my New England friends tell me this is the most authentic lobstah roll in the city. I have no idea if it is indeed authentic, but it's delicious. And that's all that matters, right?

I just wish there was more seating in the EV location.

Luke's Lobster
93 E 7th St, New York, NY 10009

Dec 08, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Fresh uni

confirming that you can purchase it at Eataly.

200 5th Ave, New York, NY 10010

Nov 23, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Flushing: Korean BBQ near Union Street?

Picnic Garden is the only place in Flushing that I know of that does AYCE. However, Joo Mak Gol on Farrington (just across Northern from Union) has really good BBQ and great banchan.

Wang Kalbi
147-42 Northern Blvd, Queens, NY 11354

Nov 05, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Outer Boroughs

koreatown soondooboo chigae

I like BCD's as well. It's very refined, silky smooth. However, I don't like the inevitable wait there, and the banchan seems... sterilized and dumbed down (I do like the fried fishie though).

Seoul Garden is a solid plan B. Their sundubu is always solid, and the galbi which comes as the combo is awesome.

Seoul Garden
34 W 32nd St, New York, NY 10001

Nov 05, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Sunday brunch in Williamsburg


229 S 4th St, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Nov 03, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Outer Boroughs

food options near wall and water

Adel's Halal cart at 180 Maiden was go-to when I worked in that building. Veronica's Kitchen is great for soul/Caribbean food. Check out - those guys cover FiDi lunch options pretty extensively.

Veronica's Kitchen
125 Front St, New York, NY 10005

Nov 02, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Midtown low-key for drinks, food tonight

Bills Bar & Burger in Rock Center would probably fit the bill. I've only been to lunch, so I have no idea how loud it gets during the evening. But it should be reasonably easy to get a table, and the food is decent.

Oct 26, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Hahm Ji Bach

I've been to both locations, and prefer the Murray Hill location, as it's more accessible to Manhattan (via the LIRR) and has better spots for post-samgyeopsal drinking/hanging out. The food's about the same at both places. The Murray Hill location is much much smaller, and there's usually a wait.

I'd go with the thick cut, as it remains much juicier during cooking. But if you're going two get a couple or orders, it wouldn't hurt to try both?

Oct 18, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Outer Boroughs

Recs for Smaller, Chef-Driven Restaurants with Great Food

Adding Braeburn and Northern Spy Food Co to the list.

Little Owl is probably the best of the 3 options your friend recommended, though they pack the houses every night.

Even though it's not in Manhattan, I would seriously vouch for Traif in So. Williamsburg.

Little Owl
90 Bedford Street, New York, NY 10014

117 Perry Street, New York, NY 10014

Northern Spy Food Co.
511 E 12th St, New York, NY 10009

Oct 14, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

second date at Apiary

sure, go for it champ. teh inter-tubez appoves ;)

Oct 08, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan

Mi Nidito on 8th Avenue any good?

No, it's not very good. Think Chevy's style Tex/Mex, only dirtier, and less good.

Toloache is good, though you'll have to expand your horizons for good Mexican. You could search around Chowhound, but the nearest good Mexican (more of a taqueria actually) is Tehuitzingo on 10th ave. I also like Itzocan Cafe in the East Village, Centrico in Tribeca, and Barrio Chino in the Lower East Side. Mercadito (there's locations in the East and West Village) is also pretty popular.

Lastly, please don't confine yourself to the Theater District / Times Square... the food around there isn't very good. It's easy as hell to get around the city via subway or cab.

695 10th Ave, New York, NY 10036

251 West 50th Street, New York, NY 10019

Barrio Chino
253 Broome St, New York, NY 10002

Itzocan Cafe
438 E 9th St, New York, NY 10009

211 West Broadway, New York, NY 10013

Sep 10, 2010
ExFlexitarian in Manhattan