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va beh', new Italian in Park Slope

I went a few weeks back after opening. The staff was very friendly and attentive, but not overly so. Bathroom situation is a little weird with sink outside but that is minor. Olives were tasty as was our pastas - fusilli with meat sauce and one with arrabiata. The sauces were very good and tasted housemade. I thought the pasta slightly overcooked and probably out of a box. Either way, the bang for the buck was certainly there and I would go back.

Jan 31, 2012
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Sky Ice: good Thai food (and ice cream) in Brooklyn--can it be??

A friend raved about this place so we ordered takeout about 9PM on a Friday. It was terrible. Just went with the masaman curry and drunken noodles. Soaked in sweet sauce, bland, soggy etc. Normally I give a place a second chance but I'd be mad at myself if I wasted more money here. Based on these reviews, maybe I just came at the worst possible time.

63 5th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11217

Oct 11, 2011
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Bruges dinner in the city

We'll be staying in the city center mid-week and unfortunately Den Dyver will not be open. We looked into a few other places (Jonkman, Hertog) but they seem to be a drivve away. Any suggestions for good dining within city limits? Thanks.

Jul 07, 2011
Ralphus in Europe

Looking for good pubs near Brooklyn Sheraton (228 Duffield Street)

I'd walk to Court Street and eat at Strong Place. Very solid craft beer selection and delicious lamb burger and pulled pork sandwich. When I want great food and beers to match, this is where I go. Basically a bit more upscale Waterfront. Then you can walk over to Smith and hit Bar Great Harry for more beer.

Bar Great Harry
280 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11231

Strong Place
270 Court St, Brooklyn, NY 11231

Jun 27, 2011
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Dressler, Locande Verde, Peasant, Saul or The Grocery

I'd go for The Vanderbilt over Saul and Grocery. Food is fantastic and much more casual/open atmosphere.

140 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11201

The Grocery
288 Smith St, Brooklyn, NY 11231

The Vanderbilt
570 Vanderbilt Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11238

Jun 21, 2011
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

smorgasburg! what to eat?

The pork cemita was delicious. Multi-layered on fresh bread with tasty tasty pork. The chicken had like a half hour wait and I'm glad it made me choose the pork.

Jun 10, 2011
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Fresh fish Brooklyn Chinatown?

Heading down to Chinatown for some lunch this weekend and want to bring some fish back with me. Any recs on good markets? I've seen quite a few but haven't purchased from any.

Jan 06, 2011
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Source for Cocoa Nibs in Brooklyn (not Wlliamsburg)

Brooklyn Homebrew has them. Right at the corner of 3rd and 8th, next to Four and Twenty Blackbirds.

Brooklyn Homebrew
163 8th St, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Jan 03, 2011
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

SF Hound coming to Brooklyn for long weekend

I'll let everyone else sort out the food. Brooklyn has amazing restaurants, high end, casual and neighborhood gems.

I love SF as a beer town. So many tasty little places like Magnolia and the Thirsty Bear. Unfortunately, I think due to price per square foot, there are no true brewpubs in Brooklyn. In Manhattan you have Chelsea and the various Heartland locations but that's about it. If you are planning to drink in Brooklyn, check out places like the 4th Avenue Pub, Pacific Standard, Mission Dolores or the Gate. All have great NY Craft Beer (and NJ and PA etc) on draft. My favorites are Sixpoint (BK), Captain Lawrence and Ithaca (from upstate). Enjoy.

Pacific Standard
82 4th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11217

Mission Dolores
249 4th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11215

Nov 15, 2010
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Fort Defiance Saturday Brunch

Given the beautiful weather this weekend, though I'd take the bike down to Red Hook and try Fort Defiance for the first time. Arrived about 11:30 and was immediately seated with wife. Wait staff was gracious enough to allow an extra seat for my late friend who had a flat on the way down.

Service - prompt, friendly and polite.
Food - only tried the muffaletta. Bread was soft. Meats/cheeses were of high quality. Olive/Veg salad was good but perhaps not as salty/olive-y as the Central Grocery. Overall a very good sandwich, if not a bit overstuffed. My wife and friend had to remove some cheese.
Drinks - Abita Turbo Dog and Restoration tasted fine. Had one vodka bloody that was good but not ethereal. The manual drip coffee was strong and delicious.
Atmosphere - I expected more pub than diner but got the opposite. I'd imagine there aren't many places for family brunch in that hood, so that would explain lots o kids and strollers. The noise level was a bit high and a little girl kept kicking the bar but that should be expected with weekend brunch.

I can't complain about the place and the meal but I'm not sure I'd make the effort to go back for brunch with so many options in my own hood. I may try dinner one evening. On a positive note, we got to meet Gee, the owner of the Red Hook Bike Shop, who has lots of old bike parts and was able to replace a tire on a 1979 Columbia for my friend. QUite a character and nice guy.

Fort Defiance
365 Van Brunt St, Brooklyn, NY 11231

Nov 15, 2010
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Tacos Matamoros & Sunset Park

I finally made the "trek" down to the 45th St location this past Sunday with a couple friends. As mentioned in previous posts, we appeared to be the only gringos eating there at the time which is usually a good sign. The place was packed at 2PM but we got a table in the back with no wait.

My wife and I split the mole enchilada and four large tacos (the quantity of which I would regret for the rest of the day) - al pastor, lengua, carne asada and chorizo. The tacos were all very good, fresh ingedients, good guac and the meats well seasoned and not too fatty. The tongue and chorizo were probably my favorites as the spice and texture of the meats stood up to the additional chipotle hot sauce I used and the guac. My wife liked the mole but I found it a bit too sweet for my taste and was probably wiped out from eating the better part of four large tacos before that. The mango shake was delicious and based on other posts, I am regretting not ordering a marg. Our friend had a couple tamales and a torta and seemed quite pleased. all in for just over $30 for all three people. DEAL! I was full for about five hours after.

I plan to visit some of the other places mentioned in these threads if they're any where near as good as Matamoros.

Tacos Matamoros
4508 5th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11220

Oct 12, 2010
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Mai on Atlantic closed?

And Blue Marble is closing too due to doubling rents. Looks like Atlantic is becoming more and more desolate.

Aug 24, 2010
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Mai on Atlantic closed?

I walked by today and noticed the sign was down and windows were papered over. Anyone have info?

Aug 23, 2010
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Mussels in Brooklyn! Please....

Canaille on 5th bt Warren and St Marks had a nice Moules Frites not too long ago.

Jul 12, 2010
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Anyone tried the new Halal cart at 4th and Atlantic?

Yeah, your spot has a been consistently good and a regular once a week dinner for my family. Where did the truck go?!?!

Jun 24, 2010
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Prospect Heights recommendations

I think Franny's is a gem if price isn't a worry.

Mitchells was replaced by Piquant that has very good Mexican/sw style food and solid margaritas.

Stop in at Washington Commons on Washington for a beer after.

Washington Commons
434 Park Pl, Brooklyn, NY 11238

May 28, 2010
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

NYC Hound in San Diego

Thanks everyone. I will be there the first week in June thankfully.

May 12, 2010
Ralphus in San Diego

NYC Hound in San Diego

Heading back! Plan to hit some of the places I missed on this thread. Anything else new and noteworthy? Thanks.

May 11, 2010
Ralphus in San Diego

Brooklyn Thai (that doesnt suck)

I never meant to imply it was outstanding, just thought it didn't completely suck. We tried the panang curry and found it to be good but not mindblowing. I was a bit disappointed with the drunken noodle in that they didn't use the wide, flat noodles that I prefer but it was pretty much as indicated on the menu upon further review. We ordered take out a couple times after a few beers, so that should probably be taken into account as well.

Mar 01, 2010
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Favorites at the brooklyn flea?

The papusas were OK, had the chicken and cheese today. The lobster rolls are solid with tons of meat for $14. My favorite food item though has to be the wangding from asia dog. Hog dog with BBQ pork belly and scallions. Had two Sunday afternoon. The cheddar truffle pretzel with beet horseradish dipping sauce was also very tasty. McClure's spicy pickles and bloody mary mix, while a bit pricey, are good to take home. And you can buy some kirby's after the pickles are gone, quarter them, add them to the jar and in less than a week have another whole jar of awesome pickles.

Mar 01, 2010
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Brooklyn Thai (that doesnt suck)

I've found Born on Flatbush in Prospect Heights doesn't suck.

Feb 23, 2010
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

wd-50 Review + Photos

Sounds very much like the tasting I had last summer. Went with a few friends, had the wine pairing and had one of the best meals ever. It was like extremely tasty dinner theater. And we got to go into the kitchen to meet the chef, which was cool.

Jan 21, 2010
Ralphus in Manhattan

Momofuku Ko or The Modern??

I agree with these comments. I went for the first time this week. I am not in a position to spend $600 for a meal for two and drinks very often, so I expect to be wowed when I do. The minimalist atmosphere and service threw me off a bit. The chefs were more than willing to discuss the ingredients or preparation but did seem a bit annoyed to be there. The first few fish courses were good but not earth-shattering. The shaved foie/reisling gelee dish was very tasty as was the duck. The pours on the paired drinks were not generous at all and I had to really ration my drink to ensure it lasted through each course. And while I am indeed a beer afficionado, ending the meal with a Ipswich Oatmeal Stout was weak. If I'm spending $100 for a drink pairing, at least give me a Brooklyn Black Ops or something equal. I don't think I'd go back at that cost.

Jan 21, 2010
Ralphus in Manhattan

Ki or Blue Ribbon?

Want to go for sushi tonight in Brooklyn. Taro is my usual spot so I'm looking to branch out. Looks like Blue Ribbon and Ki are consistently highly rated. Price isn't really an issue, just looking for the best quality, prepared and possibly creative sushi. Any help would be appreciated. Cheers.

Jan 09, 2010
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

Good places to live in Brooklyn based on food/bevs?

Good no-hype awesome beer social taverns in the Boerum Hill/ North Slope area. 4th Ave Pub, Pacific Standard, The Gate etc. Also many solid restaurants and centrally located so Ft Greene, Smith St are a short walk away. Also you have Atlantic Terminal nearby for awesome eats. JK, almost every subway stops there and the LIRR.

Dec 16, 2009
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

where do you buy olives?

I used to love the olives at Sahadi's but I've noticed recently that more often than not, the olives are mushy.

Dec 08, 2009
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

East Harbor Seafood Palace quick review

Went for dim sum brunch today. About three blocks from the 8th Ave N train stop. Upon arrival, noticed that we were the only non-Asian group in the place, always a good sign in my experience. Arrived at around 10AM and were immediately seated. Place started to get really packed around 10:30. Overall, food seemed very fresh and at the beginning was plentiful. As it got packed, we saw the carts less and less. Four of us ate for $10 pp. Great meal for the price. I have no complaints about this place and would definitely go back.

Favs - Pork buns, very velvety texture, sweet bbq inside with plenty of pork, my fav
Some sort of pork ball, wrapped in bacon, dipped in mayo.
Pork shu mai
Shrimp "roll ups" in some sort of rice noodle
"Donut" with I think coconut or pineapple curd

Eh - chicken feet, good taste but too much work for little reward
cow tail (I think), see above for chicken feet
Fried bread wrapped in noodle, a bit soggy.

East Harbor
714 65th St, Brooklyn, NY 11220

Nov 28, 2009
Ralphus in Outer Boroughs

NYC Hound in San Diego

Reporting back.
Day 1 - Mariscos German - AWESOME fish tacos, ceviche mixta and gubernador (?, shrimp and cheese). Loved this place.
Neighborhood for Alesmith beer and dinner pairing - food was terrible. Cold and an entire 5 course tasting came out on one plate. Flavors weren't even good.
Day 2 - lunch at pizza port solana beach - tasty sonana pizza with shrimp and clams, really tasty beers to match. Followed by a tasting/cheese plate at Stone, also solid.
Dinner at Cowboy Star - best meal of the trip. Pork belly, foie and sweetbread apps were the stars. Pork dinner and rabbit also very good.
Day 3 - Mad River Cask Beer Dinner at Linkery - food was very good and expertly paired with MR cask beers. Pumpkin Panna Cotta with Pumpkin Ale was my fav, wife liked the Pork Sliders with the IPA. Service was a little confused since we ordered two of each tasting pairing. Seems like a sandwich/pub sort of spot so there were issues getting the food timed correctly and paired with the right beers. Servers were very nice though and tried hard to make it right. I'd go back.

Loved SD, loved the beer in particular.

The Linkery
3794 30th St, San Diego, CA 92104

Mariscos German
3515 University Ave, San Diego, CA 92104

Nov 18, 2009
Ralphus in San Diego

NYC Hound in San Diego

Thanks a million everyone! I'll report back.

Nov 11, 2009
Ralphus in San Diego

NYC Hound in San Diego

Spending a long weekend in San Diego for the first time. I'd love to check out some of the top spots in SD.

Staying downtown and will have auto access if necessary but would prefer walk/public trans.

Would enjoy:
Any and all Mexican or South American food
Seafood of any shape or size
Any other cuisines or restos that are particularly good in the SD area.


Nov 10, 2009
Ralphus in San Diego