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steakrules85's Profile

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Louro -- New David Santos Restaurant in West Village

I actually loved Louro. One of the better meals I've had in recent memory actually. I enjoy their menu approach, which is divided to basically allow the diner to craft their own tasting menu. The food was incredible and the service was very warm and friendly.

I thought each course was outstanding and some were among the best dishes I've had in the past year. Pork belly with uni, gnocchi alla romana with crispy onions was a revelation, and the braised short rib was also fantastic. The pb and j pain perdu was one of the best desserts I've had in a restaurant and definitely worth the extra calories.

Mar 02, 2013
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Italian Restaurants Comparable to Del Posto?

My favorite Italian restaurants, which I all like better than Del Posto are in no particular order:

Maialino
Perla
Lincoln
Babbo
Felidia
Ai Fiori
Scarpetta

Dec 04, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Lincoln Ristorante - hits and misses

I agree that $60 per three courses is a definite bargain considering the food quality at Lincoln.

Dec 04, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Best risotto NYC?

Felidia, Il Mulino, Tocqueville, Ai Fiori.

Dec 04, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Keen's or Wolfgang's?

Very hard to say. You can't go wrong with either of them. It depends on what I am looking for. I think Keens is great if you are looking for an old, quintessential New York experience unlike any other. It's atmosphere is just so unique with the pipes on the ceiling and the different rooms. I prefer the bull moose room upstairs the best. Usually, Keens is my preference in the cold winter months because it just fits the weather. Not to say that women would feel uncomfortable at Keens (they certainly would not) but I think of it more as a man's steakhouse. I usually go once a year with all my uncles and cousin's for a guys steak night out in the city.

If I am looking for something a little more modern, swanky, going out with females I'd choose Strip House. It's brighter, got red leather booths, more polished in decor, less of a "man cave" so to speak. I'd say more inventive and updated takes on sides and desserts. Best of all it is a very short walk from my apartment.

It really depends on the mood but if we are talking stricly about the food they are neck and neck and I would not have a tough time recommending either.

A few others favorites are Old Homestead (although it seems to get a lot of backlash here I think its another classic) and BLT Prime (fantastic, and you get the best free bread in the city ohhh those popovers are spectacular and scrumptious).

Aug 04, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Keen's or Wolfgang's?

I disagree with those who are saying that Wolfgangs is better than Keens. Keens is quintessential New York and the food is truly amazing. I've been to Keens several times and they always nail a great steak dinner for me. Which is to say they always deliver on correct temperature, simple yet great sides, and terrific desserts. The one time I went to Wolfgangs, I had a good meal but they overcooked our porterhouse which is a big no no. Plus, I just can't get over the fact that theyre trying to be a carbon copy of Peter Luger without the incredible results.

Also, Strip House is terrific. Definitely better than Wolfgangs IMO. Always perfectly cooked, remarkable sides, great atmosphere. Gotta back up the Craft Rec too. Craft and Minetta Tavern turned out two of the best steaks I've ever had, pretty impressive for nonsteakhouses.

Aug 03, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Novita

Novita is a hidden gem as far as I'm concerned. It doesn't get much press but it is a very good neighborhood Italian restaurant. I've only been once but loved it.

Great pasta, the osso buco is delicious, as is the fish. They usually have 4 specials or so as well. Can't go wrong.

Jul 26, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Trip report - a week eating (mostly) in the West Village

My curiosity got the best of me:

Last reQuest sPeciaL 22
stacked eggs, lace potato, hatch,
bacon, ham, cheddar, caramelized
onions, sausage cream gravy

Jul 17, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Trip report - a week eating (mostly) in the West Village

I loved Shopsin's. The last request looks like it has some fried onions and guacamole on it.

Jul 17, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Shopsin's.

They do half orders on all french toast or pancakes which are half price +$3.

Jul 17, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Dilemma: Little Owl or Fat Radish

I cannot vouch for Fat Radish since I have not been, however I loved Little Owl when I dined there on Friday. The service and food were terrific. True it is small and tables are cramped but it was a great dinner.

I was having a hard time deciding between the sliders and the soft shell crab appetizers, so the waitress allowed me to order just 1 slider for a taste along with the SSC. I though that was a great gesture. For the main, I had the halibut with corn, peas, and pesto vinaigrette along with a side of mushrooms with truffled breadcrumbs. It was absolutely terric. The fish was incredibly fresh along with the really delicious veggies. A perfect light meal for summer.

Ended with the strawberry rhubard crispy with mascarpone gelato and was very happy!

Jul 17, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

NYC trip - next week

You have a pretty good list there. Definitely keep EMP, Maialino, and Minetta Tavern. The Casa Mono suggestion is definitely spot on as well. It is an incredible restaurant with unbelievable food on one of the nicest blocks in Manhattan.

Jun 20, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

What to Order at Marc Forgione?

I'm glad you enjoyed it. Definitely on of my favorite restaurants too.

Jun 18, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Flatiron area - fun environment/good food - need help!

Describe what you mean by fun?

If you just mean a nice casual environment with really tasty food I love Giorgio's of Gramercy. Went there with my parents and I think this is a great restaurant for that type of dinner.

Maialino is also a great choice with wonderful Italian cuisine. Depending upon what you order you ca get out of there for $30-$50 pp.

If you want something a little more young, hip, loud and like Mexican food, Dos Caminos is a chain but is a solid choice for a good meal.

Jun 15, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

What to Order at Marc Forgione?

I suggest the tasting menu of his signature dishes. He is an amazing chef and this is one of my favorite restaurants. Don't miss the afformentioned chili lobster, halibut, whatever duck hes doing (the menu constantly fluctuates), and desserts are incredible (get the sundae).

Jun 14, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

NY Food Itinerary - Do you Agree?

I agree with the brunch recommendations on Minetta Tavern (prime rib, duck hash, thick cut bacon, black label burger), Breslin (lamb burger and thrice cooked fries), Clinton St (any pancakes, sugar cured bacon, biscuits with raspberry jam), Shopsins (too long to list but everything is incredible), and LV (french toast).

You can't go wrong with MT and the Breslin for dinner either.

Jun 14, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

NY Food Itinerary - Do you Agree?

Getting a reservation at Minetta Tavern for brunch is actually and pleasantly quite easy.

Jun 14, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Humm and Guidara's Nomad

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion based on their experience and tastes. However, I thought the tagliatelle with crab was incredible and every bit as good as EMP's version. The lobster was also exceptional.

All I have to say is I am glad that I went to NoMad before it really gained steam because I think it is going to turn into one of the toughest reservations in town.

Jun 14, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Humm and Guidara's Nomad

Glorified airplane food? Wow. You can put me on that airplane ANYTIME.

Jun 13, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Manhattan for three days - questions

Coolhaus is awesome for ice cream sandwiches too.

Jun 12, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Sunday breakfast/brunch challenge - help!

I had a great brunch at Artisanal for my mother's birthday. They would be able to accomodate a large party and have a pretty diverse menu full of breakfast and lunch type options. Also pretty reasonable too.

Jun 11, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Manhattan for three days - questions

To each his own but you are coming here for food trucks?

Jun 11, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Big Apple BBQ Block Party

I stopped by on Sunday and sampled a few places. I thought the absolute best was Big Bob Gibson's and it was absolutely the longest line there. I waited for about 45 minutes but it was worth it. I requested "extra bark" and the pit crew pulled out a fresh special piece for me which was so incredibly amazing! Couldn't thank them enough.

I didn't think Ed Mitchell was anything too special, but then again I did get this late on Saturday about an hour before the event ended so maybe thats why. I enjoyed 17th street BBQ and Baker's ribs as well. Many of the lines were so long we didn't feel like wasting our time. I definitely wish I could have tried Myron Mixon's chopped brisket though as I saw others' plates and it looked so juicy.

Overall, its cool to experience once but I don't think I will be back next year. For $8 a plate it just isn't worth it and the lines and huge crowds take away from the enjoyment. I would however LOVE to try to get one of the VIP passes somehow. I don't know if it is just open to like friends and family but several places has little VIP areas around the pits with whole suckling pigs and such only available to those priveledged people. As I waited on the line for Big Bob's, I was about 4 feet away from a suckling pig at 17th streets station. It looked so incredibly amazing, I was thinking about offering one of the people some money for a little piece of suckling pig lol.

Jun 11, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Coming to NYC and had a few questions about reservation systems and brunch/lunch

Agreed on Bouley and Shopsins. Two of my favorites (even though obviously on totally different ends of the spectrum!).

Jun 06, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Gotta give Perla some love

I was there early but there were 4 or so other tables around me and I didn't find it loud at all. But then again that sort of thing does not bother me.

May 29, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

5 Day NYC Trip - Fine Tuning Itinerary - Suggestions please!

Eh, to each his or her own I guess. I don't eat the crust really so that doesn't bother me if it indeed was bland. I thought the pizza was great and they are using top notch ingredients and have lots of choices.

May 29, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Gotta give Perla some love

I went to Perla last night, the new restaurant from Michael Toscano, for an early Memorial day dinner. For those who don't know, he was the chef at Babbo, then Manzo, and now he has left the shadows of Batali and opened up what I believe is one of the top Italian restaurants in the city. Yes, I said it. In a city full of some of the best Italian in the country, the meal i had there last night was on that level. I don't know if I can say it is on the same level as Babbo yet, but it was definitely better than Manzo (which I also liked but that was after Toscano had already left).

Before I get to the food, the restaurant is situated on the small quiet street of Minetta Lane right down the block from Minetta Tavern. If you aren't looking for it you probably would not even know it existed. And honestly, even though I am giving them big time props I am hoping it stays a secret. But I know it is only a matter of time before it blows up and becomes the "next big thing". The press has actually already discovered it and I think the NY Times gave it two stars.

I was greeted warmly by the staff and shown to a table in the small, yet cozy and warm dining room. The tables near the bar are quite close together, but then there are some red leather banquettes towards the back of the restaurant where the open kitchen is. I really liked the decor and atmosphere. Very laid back, with some eclectic types of music playing throughout the meal. The crowd varied from older couples, to families with younger children. Basically, this is a place where anyone and everyone is welcome.

Every staff member that I came in contact with was super friendly and attentive. My water was constantly refilled along with my bread plate. The waiter came over to check on me periodically (in a non-annoying way) and even engage in some friendly conversation throughout the meal.

Alright now onto the good stuff. The menu is quite large, meaning if you like great food like myself it can be daunting narrowing down your choices. I saw a lot of Babbo and Manzo in the concept of the menu and in many of the dishes. The cavatelli with duck ragu and foie gras soudned identical to the fusilli with the same exact ingredients I had at Manzo earlier this year. After questioning the waiter, he confirmed it is the same dish but just the different pasta. Except for one minor detail. They shave frozen foie gras over the pasta at the table and let it melt into the pasta. Sounded pretty crazy! But since I had the dish at Manzo (and it was great), I wanted to try something new from the menu

It is divided into antipasti, pastas, entrees, and contorni. Going for broke I had to try something from each section as usual.

My first plate would be the seared foie gras with cherries and crispy pork testa.This was so incredible! One of the best foie gras dishes I have ever had. And this was right after I had another amazing preparation at Dovetail 2 days ago. Seared to perfect, pink on the outside and it had a nice sauce that I forget what was in it. The kicker was the crispy testa, basically a pork head croquette. Sinful, fatty, goodness, Fat on top of fat and so delectably delicioso.

Agnolotti al sugo d'arrosto - Little pillows of braised short rib love. Ten to an order. There was also a little escarole inside to cut the richness. Sitting in a sauce of beef drippings. Sprinkled with some pecorino romano. Sounds simple, but the ingredients sing and stand on their own wonderfully. Nothing left when I was done with this pasta. Another similar dish from Manzo I believe.

Saba glazed duck with persimmon, cabbage, pancetta- Such a wonderful dish! It was perfectly executed. The breast was seared rare with a salty crispy skin and the confit leg fell off the bone and managed to have a wonderful crust on the outside in its own right. There was lots of chunky bits of pancetta dispersed around the cabbage. The saba (grape must) added a beautiful and intense sweetness that I love and is the perfect pairing to duck. Very similar to the outstanding duck dish at Babbo. Not surpring since Toscano used to cook at Babbo.

Polenta with asiago and ricotta- Homey, comforting and cheesy bliss. I love polenta and this was the perfect accompaniment to the duck. I will never ever pass up polenta, and the asiago (think Italian blue cheese) and ricotta added a different twist on the classic.

At this point I could have left happy but since the meal was so perfect I solidered on for dessert. More polenta!

Polenta upside down cake with apples and figs- This was a very nice dessert. Think the bottom of a corn muffin baked with the apples and figs on the bottom, then they flip it over after baking like a traditional upside down cake. Then it is topped with olive oil gelato (I subbed it for the vanilla) and caramel sauce. It was remarkably moist, with a sweet corn flavor. The apples and figs were nice and the olive oil gelato was super fresh and also acted as a palate cleanser to cut through the sweetness. Great ending to the perfect meal.

The only funny thing that happened really was not a fault of the restaurant at all. At one point you could feel the ground below you shaking as the train came through! Everyone in the restaurant kind of looked at each other like what is happening? Some out of towners at a nearby table really got a kick of it. They must think that is a norm in New York.

The kitchen is turning out some magical dishes. This is in the running for the best meal top to bottom I've had this year. It has immediately joined the list among my favorite Italian restaurants. Prices are reasonable but can add up of course depending upon how many dishes you order. With all that I ordered the bill came to just over $100 with tax and tip. A relative bargain for the quality of food and service that I encountered.

May 29, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

Need help with Sunday dinner.

There are millions of incredible restaurants in this city. Can you be more specific about what kind of food, atmopshere, and price you are looking for? That way people will be able to give you more specific recommendations.

May 29, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

5 Day NYC Trip - Fine Tuning Itinerary - Suggestions please!

One other pizzeria that is great but doesn't get much press is Luzzo's.

May 29, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan

5 Day NYC Trip - Fine Tuning Itinerary - Suggestions please!

I had a terrific brunch at ABC Kitchen this weekend. The maple bacon biscuits were incredible and the scramblled eggs with fried oysters and hot sauce butter was one of the most unique and outstanding brunch dishes I've ever tasted. The flavors in the dish kind of brought me back to New Orleans, which I have a soft spot for as one of my favorite cities.

I also highly recommend the NoMad. Humm and Guidara are doing things right just like they are at EMP. A lot of the same dishes but a much different, more relaxed atmosphere. If you go during the day, the atrium if a wonderful place to eat with the sunlight shining through. As for the food, the tagliatelle with king crab (holdover from EMP) is one of the best pastas you will ever have. Saying a lot for a chef who doesn't specialize in Italian food. And I loved the lobster dish as well. As always, the service from this team is top notch and superb. Both ABC Kitchen and the NoMad were two of my favorite meals of 2012 so far.

May 29, 2012
steakrules85 in Manhattan