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Visitor Recs - with conditions

Hi everyone

Well we're headed to Boston in 3 days' time and really excited about visiting the city.

Hubby and I love good chow and are quite adventurous. Problem we have is that mother in law is not a foodie and doesn't agree with paying good money for good food. She will often just have an appetizer because she thinks eating out is a waste of money :(

She is also a very plain eater - no spice, no pizza, no steak. Enjoys lasagne, pasta (carbonara style), salads, sandwiches and would probably like traditional american fayre such as meatloaf, chicken pot pie etc. I also think she'd like diners.

Any suggestions? I'm thinking for our North End meal we'll try Panza. Stuck for anything else really.

Any help appreciated!

Oct 15, 2010
kansel in Greater Boston Area

First time visitor - please help to make it special!

Not London, Nottingham, approx 120 miles away. And I am yet to find a steak in the UK that comes even close to American or Canadian steak.

Oct 15, 2010
kansel in Washington DC & Baltimore

First time visitor - please help to make it special!

I'm leaning towards Ray's, mainly because you just can't get decent steak in the UK.

Which location would you suggest for us (staying at the Palomar) and how do we get there? And do they take res?

Thanks

Oct 14, 2010
kansel in Washington DC & Baltimore

First time visitor - please help to make it special!

Thanks everyone. Upon reflection i realise I'm probably asking for mission impossible :)

The least important criteria is the price - don't get me wrong we still don't do $200 tasting menus but we can go higher if we need to for a great meal. The casual ambience/jeans is the most important really.

Ray's burger, Dino and Ray's the Steaks sound good. Any other higher priced but still casual places to try?

Oct 13, 2010
kansel in Washington DC & Baltimore

First time visitor - please help to make it special!

Hi folks

Husband and i are visiting DC from the UK for just two nights later this month (we visit Boston & NYC first of all).

We will be celebrating our 17th anniversary while we are in town and would like a nice - but not megabucks - dinner that evening (a Thursday). Entrees around the $20 mark.

We don't do fancy schmancy and we like to try and travel light so don't bring dinner suits or dresses.
Looking for a solid neighborhood place that serves good food at good prices where we won't feel out of place in smart jeans. Particularly interested in American food, Steak, Italian, Thai or Chinese.

A colleague who has been to DC recommended Founding Farmers and I agree the menu looks nice - so would appreciate your thoughts on that one and whether there are any other places you would suggest. Concierge at our hotel (Palomar) has been really helpful and has recommended Bistro du Coin but I don't think they take reservations which is essential for this meal.

Also interested to hear of a great breakfast spot for eggs, bacon and pancakes.

Thanks so much in advance :0)

Tina

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Founding Farmers
1924 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20006

Oct 12, 2010
kansel in Washington DC & Baltimore

Late Lunch - 15 min walk of Lafayette & Howard in SoHo?

That could work well for us then. Is it likely to be quiet around 4pm?

Sep 20, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Late Lunch - 15 min walk of Lafayette & Howard in SoHo?

Walkers sounds perfect... apart from the hours! We might be able to get there earlier depending on the tie my folks reach the hotel from EWR...

Also considered Bubby's - tried and trusted usual haunt.

Sep 19, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Late Lunch - 15 min walk of Lafayette & Howard in SoHo?

Looking for a place for a very early dinner / late lunch (around 4pm on a Saturday) near to our hotel which is located on Lafayette & Howard. Max 15-20 minute walk due to time restraints.

Some place casual, maybe a diner, deli or cafe type joint. Not too busy or loud and can take a party of 6.

Not Chinese, Indian or Thai. Prefer American, Italian, French.

Thanks :)

Sep 17, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Old Style Diners?

Sorry for not being clear - I meant we will travel anywhere in Manhattan.

I guess Skylight is the only option then!

Aug 03, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Old Style Diners?

Hi folks

Wondering how many good old style diners are still around. Bringing the family to NYC in a couple of months (all adults) and I know they will love a traditional diner.

Skylight is on my list as we ate there last year and thought the food was very good. Any others worth a visit?

Location not an issue as we like to travel for good food.

Thanks

Jul 31, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Visiting DC - Steak Rec for anniversary dinner?

Looking at the boards, Ray's seems to win on taste and value - but it doesn't sound like the right ambience for my husband and I who will be celebrating our 17th anniversary by visiting DC from the UK.

Don't get me wrong - we don't do formal, stuffy or overromantic gestures, but would like someplace that serves great steaks, where we can wear smart jeans and have decent conversation as well as food.

As tourists we're limited to places accessible by public transit - any suggestions for some place that fits the bill but won't completely crash the bank?

Thanks

Apr 18, 2010
kansel in Washington DC & Baltimore

First time visitor - recs please :-)

Hi everyone

Visiting Boston from the UK for the first time in October. Regular NYC visitor but really excited to visit Boston.

I'm travelling with my husband and mother in law. Hubby and I are mid thirties, mother in law late sixties. Hubby & I more adventurous with food but have to play it safe on this trip.

We're staying in the Sheraton (I think its in Back Bay?) and are limited to public transport. We are in search of the following:

Good breakfast spots- eggs, pancakes, bacon, bagels etc

Food on the go - good carts, soups, salads, sandwiches

Places for dinner - preferably Italian, American, Mexican, Good bar type food. We love burgers, ribs, wings, pasta, steak etc. We also really enjoy Wagamama here and I believe you have one - so similar food to Wags would also be great.

Nothing fancy schmancy as we like to travel casual and light. Nothing expensive - max $20 per entree (plus tax, tip etc).

Thanks in advance!

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Wagamama
1 Faneuil Hall Sq, Boston, MA 02109

Apr 18, 2010
kansel in Greater Boston Area

Any quiet family style restaurant early Saturday evening?

Sorry Kathryn, I should know better :-)

Just an entree each, no alcohol. Looking to pay around $30 each. There will be 6 of us.

Thanks

Apr 11, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Any quiet family style restaurant early Saturday evening?

Hi everyone

I'm delighted to say that we'll be back in NYC in October, this time with various family members in tow aged between 16 - 68!

Looking for a good place for us to eat Sat night, anywhere between the financial district and times square area.

American cuisine preferred - perhaps a good diner or diner type place with a wide menu would suit us best. Someplace that won't be bursting at the seams at around 6pm - 7pm.

Other cuisines could include Italian, BBQ, steakhouse.

Thanks

Apr 11, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Manhattan Trip Report - Disaster Struck!

Hi folks, well as you know for months I was planning our trip and the food we would sample when we were in town from 21 - 25 Feb 2010. The itinerary all went down the pan due to illness, and having to leave a day early because of the snow storm....Anyway, the few meals we did have consisted of the following:

Sunday Lunchtime - arrived at the hotel too early to check in so wandered around to the TWC to sample something from Bouchon Bakery. I had the Pain au Raisin and my husband had the Nutter Butter. Both were completely delicious.

Sunday Evening - after spending what felt like an eternity in B&H Camera we were starving and needed something close by. Lack of web access overseas meant I couldn't look up anywhere close by so we ended up in Skylight Diner. This was a pleasant surprise as we really enjoyed our meal in this small diner. I had the ham and cheese omelette with home fries and rye toast. The fries were crispy on top and had red peppers in there. Omelette was light and tasty with a good amount of filling. It really was a good basic meal. Husband had the 9oz burger with fries. Fries were hot, crispy and very fresh. Burger was a medium thickness patty, juicy but cooked well done (we weren't asked about temperature). The burger was tasty but would have been tastier if cooked less. Bun was a standard burger bun, lightly toasted, and held the burger together well.

Monday morning - finally got to sample Clinton Street Baking Company. We spent $50 on breakfast for two, but believe me it was worth every cent and then some. We got there around 8.30am (jet lag) and it was 3/4 empty. Good strong coffee, topped up without asking. Good start! I ordered the blueberry pancakes and a side of bacon. OH. MY. GOD. I have never ever tasted pancakes as light, fluffy and delicious as this ever. The blueberries were big, juicy and fresh and the tastiest I have ever tried. Maple butter is a welcome change to maple syrup - it tasted like warm butterscotch and finished it off nicely. Bacon was crispy with a good smoke flavour but not charred. Husband had the brioche french toast with caramelized bananas and pecans with a side of scrambled egg - also out of this world. It was the kind of food that makes you squeal with delight with every mouthful!

After a breakfast like that we had no intentions - or any room for lunch.

Monday evening - we were in the Upper West Side area (and saw Bruce Willis at a premiere!!!) and needed someplace quick to eat. We ended up in Patsy's and had a great pizza. Nothing outstanding, but very enjoyable.

Monday night - in the middle of the night disaster struck and I had the worst stomach upset ever. Not sure it was the food (as husband ate the same and was fine) or if it was some kind of virus, but it was enough to keep me in bed for most of the next day and feeling off colour for about a week.

Tuesday night - ventured out in the evening and was persuaded to go to Brooklyn Diner near Carnegie Hall. Husband had a burger which he still says is the best burger he has ever tried. I needed something plain and simple so had the chicken soup. Only managed about a tenth of the bowl but what I had was amazing and hot the spot nicely. Lots of fresh chicken breast and a good amount of tarragon i think it was. Excellent broth, very nutritious. Husband thought so too - it was so good he finished it off as well as his burger! We thought this was quite pricey, but the quality good.

Wednesday - couldn't manage any breakfast other than coffee. Lunchtime managed a small amount of salad from Hale & Hearty which was very fresh and delicious.

Wednesday evening - heard on the TV about the snowstorm scheduled the following day and decided to hop in a cab to La Guardia and head to Florida a day early. Good job too as I understand a lot of flights were cancelled.

So there you have it, based on the original itinerary and plans it was a bit of a disaster but I'm glad I finally got to CSB - that was worth the trip in itself!

We're heading back to the city again in October so lets hope we have better luck next time!

Thanks for all your help.

Mar 11, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Battle of the Brasserie...

Got a DBGB reservation. Burgers also look great. Will report back.

Feb 20, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Battle of the Brasserie...

Balthazar or Pastis for steak frites...?

(or alternatives to both?)

Feb 19, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Monday Night Steak - are the options more limited?

Thanks RGR, I don't believe we have hanger steak in the UK. We have rump steak or sirloin - maybe hanger is a different name for the same thing?

Feb 17, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Monday Night Steak - are the options more limited?

we're happy to share - coming from the UK we find the portions are so big too.

how about a good steak frites for us to consider? RGR i notice you or a friend of yours had the bar steak in Balthazar - is that worth a try?

Feb 16, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Monday Night Steak - are the options more limited?

Thanks to you guys we're just putting the finishing touches to our itinerary for this up cominglong weekend. Just one night left to choose - a Monday night. In the UK a Monday can be an "off night" as a lot of chefs take their day off on Mondays & Tuesdays.

Ideally we'd like steak. No porterhouse, or rib eye etc as we prefer boneless meat so maybe a strip steak, filet mignon or steak frites/bar steak (what's the difference between the two?) with good crisp thin fries and maybe onion rings if possible.

Currently considering Keens for a strip or Balthazar for steak frites.

Anywhere else we should consider? Must be a casual place, less than $100 all in for two (no apps, dessert or alcohol).

Hopefully this is my last question for you all - and I promise to report back!

Feb 15, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Best sweet & sour chicken and crispy shredded beef?

I hope you will please excuse my ignorance, but we have never ventured into Queens. Is the area safe in the evening for tourists? Is it accessible by subway?

Feb 15, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Evening Food Carts?

Are most food carts targeted at the lunch crowd, or are any good carts open in the evenings?

Feb 14, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Best sweet & sour chicken and crispy shredded beef?

Looks fab. Any more casual spots to consider too?

Feb 14, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Best sweet & sour chicken and crispy shredded beef?

Staple chinese favourites here in the UK - are they usually on the menu in NYC? If so, where would you recommend - any budget really, just looking for the most scrumptious.

Thanks

Feb 13, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Final Trip itinerary - have I got any bloopers?

not as fond of beef bbq but love ribs and wings - dinosaur stays on the list then! we're going to do a walking tour of harlem so it should fit in nicely.

Feb 09, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Final Trip itinerary - have I got any bloopers?

> Also consider not doing Clinton St. twice - go to Barney Greengrass for breakfast one day - a NY institution.

Sadly allergic to fish :(

Feb 09, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Final Trip itinerary - have I got any bloopers?

Thanks Kathryn, I regularly follow your posts on here & appreciate the advice.

> Did you consider something like Shake Shack UWS
Love Shake Shack - have tried the Madison Square Park branch but not UWS - great suggestion thanks!

> Burger at Keens in the Pub Room? :) What about Kunjip (Korean BBQ)? Or pizza at Lazzara (no slices, note weird hrs) or Pizza Suprema?

Keens burger sounds good but even I can't manage two in one day! If Luger doesn't work out for lunch we could hit Keens. Pizza could work well too.

> Why twice at Clinton Street?

I've put CSB twice because you just can't get pancakes here in the UK and from the posts it looks as though CSB are the favourite for pancakes. Is there someplace else we could try that has pancakes as nice as CSB?

Feb 09, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

Final Trip itinerary - have I got any bloopers?

Ok, so you know we're trying to do our 4 nights in NYC this time on the (relatively speaking) cheap. All casual, nothing fancy schmancy and nowhere we have eaten on our previous 8 trips to the city. Avoiding gastro pubs and Indian because I genuinely think we do that better here in the UK. So here goes:

Sunday (evening only) - The Smith - burger & beer, Walkers or BLT burger (it has to be a burger!)

Monday: Breakfast - Clinton St Baking Co, Late lunch - Stand (burger), Dinner - Great NY Noodletown

Tuesday: Breakfast - bagel on the run, Lunch - Luger's burger (will be in Brooklyn), Dinner - something near the Knicks game, perhaps go go curry - any other quick eat options?

Wednesday: Breakfast - Clinton Street, Lunch - Dinosaur BBQ, Dinner - Co.

Thursday: bagel on the run, then head to JFK

Where are my bloopers??

Thanks

Feb 09, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

What's the city like on a Sunday evening?

I know, have visited 8 times already! For decent chow, have metrocard - will travel!

Feb 08, 2010
kansel in Manhattan

What's the city like on a Sunday evening?

Our trip is fast approaching and we arrive on a Sunday. Are restaurants generally busy or quiet on a Sunday evening?

We're currently considering Dinosaur BBQ, Blue Smoke or Walkers pub for dinner.

Thanks

Feb 07, 2010
kansel in Manhattan