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NinaNYC's Profile

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Patisserie Claude Closing

It sucks. But go ahead Claude, enjoy retirement. And for those of you in the neighborhood who love homemade pastry in the old style, go to Lafayette Bakery on Greenwich Ave (@ west 10th, next to Funayama and Lassi). The dude who works there is a little autistic and kooky but it's great stuff. He also won my heart with his weirdo handwritten signs about making a special birthday cake for you which will be better than a mix (!) and why the Atkins diet is bad for you.

Aug 11, 2008
NinaNYC in Manhattan

Reasonable Mexican

I work right near El Cantinero and unfortunately, I must warn the hounds that the "free buffet" evening is a NIGHTMARE. I went once and will never go back for it. It draws all the happy hour freaks crusing for drunk women (alas, they find their share) and the food is warmed over trays of ickyness. Too bad, b/c EC is decent for Mex food at lunch and (much later) dinner for the price, but don't go there on a happy hour/free buffet night or you'll regret it.

Jul 29, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

Need an inexpensive (adventurous?!) place for dinner/date tonight downtown or what is your opinion on Pardo's?

Re Pardo's, I wouldn't call it all that adventurous -- they're kind of a one-trick pony with the chicken, and it's something American palates can easily take to -- but it's very tasty and very cheap (at least, cheap by west village standards and/or most of manhattan south of 125th st). Portions are huge: my friend and I split a whole chix (for like 15 bucks) and it was way too much, so I'd recommend a half chix with some yuca fries and salad or two...or get the whole and take it home for lunch tomorrow! Friendly service and cozy atmosphere.

Jul 07, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

Dinner near 12th and 6th

If you have more than one meal to enjoy while in the neighborhood and your wife is a vegetarian, I'd also strongly recommend Gobo on 6th Ave @ 8th st. Gourmet vegan with asian flair. I'm a carnivore but I love it -- great atmosphere, actual wine list (!), wonderful food. They take reservations but it's not terribly hard to get one.

Jun 29, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

Pre-roller derby dinner recs in Harlem (in the west 130s)?

Going w/a party of 3 to see a friend's roller derby debut (how fun is that) at City College on W 138th & Convent Ave on Sat nite. We're going to be a bit tight for time before the event at 8, so I'm looking for a good Harlem rec in the 130s/low 140s which won't be too far from the event. We're open to cuisine type, and looking for something moderately priced but doesn't have to be cheap cheap --i.e., entrees priced in the teens is fine. I did a search on previous posts but didn't find too many in that area which were current recs. Many thanks in advance from this mostly-downtown and outer borough eater who is looking forward to an uptown treat on Sat.

Jun 13, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

Boston Hound: Needs Help Narrowing Union Square Options

Absolutely re Murray's for bagels and lox. On the other end of the price spectrum, I once had a great lunch at Fleur de Sel but the atmosphere is very french (i.e., stuffy, old school). I have not been able to scrape my pennies together yet to get to splurge at the new (new chef) Gramercy Tavern, but it's wayyy at the top of the list when I do...check out Frank Bruni's "it's back!!" review from last week's NYT for the full rave:

http://events.nytimes.com/2007/06/06/...

Jun 09, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

West Village with Kids?

Definitely take them to the Cowgirl Hall of Fame on Hudson and W 10th. Really fun and the food is great if you remotely like southwestern, updgraded trailer trash kinda grub. We are childless adults and go there a lot for salads (the "all chopped up" is killer), fried chicken, BBQ pork sandwich, etc. (not to mention the frozen blood orange margarita which'll definitely give everyone a nice relaxing feeling...), and the kids will find plenty to eat even w/out the dreaded kids menu. Plus they'll love the kitchy cowgirl artwork all over the walls.

Jun 09, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

Pongsri?

I really like Pam Real Thai (two locations on 9th Ave, @ 47th and 49th St). As cheap and good as Ponsgri and the atmosphere is a bit better (not the same pre theater crush).

Jun 09, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

Best lobster roll in the city?

I am a Mary's Fish Camp loyalist (as I live in the neighborhood) but last night committed adultery and went to the new Ed's Lobster Bar on Lafayette. I have to say, the lobster roll there was phenomenal and even more generously-sized than Mary's or Pearl's. Sides were very tasty too. And at least for now, there was no wait for a table at 7:45pm, though the place was full by 8:30.

May 31, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

Good Softshells at Jane

On Sunday I had some very tasty southeast-asian style ones at Cafe Asean (W 10th b/w 6th & Greenwich in the west village). Came with a tasty coconut milk sauce (I got it on the side as I was worried it'd overwhelm the crabs, but it was quite good) and some bok choy/okra saute on the side. $17 if I remember correctly. (But warning: the service was unbearably slow as they were totally understaffed. It's a shame as the place is a real neighborhood find that's not too crowded - very rare in w vill these days - but they haven't kept up w/recent surge in demand. If you don't mind waiting,though, it's a great spot.)

May 24, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

favorite frosty desserts?

Does anyone know if the Pinkberry in Chelsea (8th Ave) opened yet? My LA friends rave about it (tart, not too sweet, good texture frozen yogurt). I drove by in a cab a few weeks ago and it didn't look open and since then I've been too lazy to trek back, but am curious if there are any reports....

May 16, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

Vegetarian takes Manhattan

Yup, you should absolutely not miss Gobo. Two big advantages (other than delicious food): beautiful atmosphere, and (gasp) actual wine list (i.e., you won't have to drink icky honey wine like at some veggie spots). Also, they take reservations at dinner which is a plus -- too many of us carnivores in the neighborhood like the place, so it can get kind of crowded. (Note: there's one in the west village on 6th Ave & 8th St, which is the one I'm referring to, although I seem to recall there's an upper east side location which I can't vouch for). If you go, don't miss the smoked seitan with chinese broccoli and the avocado app.

May 16, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

Recommendation for best pizza in the village?

NOT a slice joint, but I tried Franny's on Flatbush (edge of Park Slope) for the first time at lunch 2 weeks ago and it was top of the charts. They have individual-sized pizzas - best to go w/a friend or three and share, so you don't have to choose just one. Lunch is MUCH less crowded than dinner from what I hear. Not cheap but worth it.

Apr 29, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

would you?

You've obviously done some homework and plan to spend most of your time in NY eating (good idea!) so I'm happy to offer a few more suggestions in addition to the recs already posted here. Seems like you have the high end well covered (Gramercy of late has been particularly spectacular from what I hear) so I'll just throw in some additional ethnic suggestions:
1. in Chinatown, this is a great time of year to go to NY Noodletown on Bowery as soft-shell crabs are here (yes!) and they do this INSANE salt-baked crab. actually, they do their salt-baked magic w/a bunch of seafood but the softshells are the top of the charts. And the noodles, as the name suggests, are the core of the menu, though they are not my personal faves. For dim sum, I am partial to Dim Sum Go Go on Catherine St. -- the shrimp rolls (in rice noodles) rock and they have a lot of vegetarian selections if you have a group that likes their greens in the morning.
2. If you can get motivated to trek to Queens (not that far, esp. if you get the Sunday NY times to keep you busy...), the weekend brunch at the Indian Restaurant Jackson Diner (only a block from the E/F train stop) is fabulous. You'll spend 10 bucks and leave stuffed. It's buffet-style but they don't let anything get warmed over or icky - it's super fresh and great variety.
3. Lastly, I have to put in a plug for Una Pizza Napoleatana on E 12th & 1st Ave in the east village. They are kind of Soup Nazi ish in their obsession w/pizza - they fly in all their ingredients from Italy (save the tomatoes, which are local), have only 4 kinds w/no substitutions, and don't you dare ask for red pepper flakes or other condiments, etc. And the price would be ridiculous at any other locale ($20 per pizza! For a personal size!) but for that secret crust recipe, they can charge whatever they want as far as I'm concerned. I fear the price fatigue and perhaps the no-compromises chef may be why in one year it went from being insanely crowded (you had to line up at 6pm to get a table) to being 1/2 full (our experience last week on a Thurs night at 7pm) and only open Thurs-Sun, but my vote is that it's worth every dime. Go with your small crew and share the pizza selection they've got, and you won't be disappointed.

Apr 29, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan

west village picks

Flor's Kitchen (Christopher & Waverly) has a wonderful Venezuelan brunch -- tender shredded beef w/egg, arepas & the works, all for about 10 bucks.

Feb 08, 2007
NinaNYC in Manhattan