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Osteria Francescana or Piazza al Duomo?

Osteria Francescana is located in Modena. Piazza al Duomo in Alba.

Aug 18, 2014
jdream in Italy

Osteria Francescana or Piazza al Duomo?

My husband (a chef) and myself (also in the restaurant business) are embarking on a nearly three month trip through Italy, France & Spain.

The main purpose of this trip, beside escaping the madness of the restaurant business for a bit, is to eat/drink/explore and learn! We are primarily interested in local, regional cuisine; rustic, honest, real. However, we would like to do one three Michelin star meal during our trip and are leaning toward doing it in Italy since it is the cuisine we both enjoy most.

All that to say… we leaning toward dinner at either Osteria Francescana or Piazza al Duomo as our super high end splurge, and would love to know if anyone has eaten at both and has strong feelings toward one or the other?

Thanks much in advance!

*(I will soon followup with a list of all the regions we'll be in and some of the places we're thinking of exploring. I'll report along the way-- we leave in two weeks!!)

Aug 17, 2014
jdream in Italy

3 Nights honeymoon (1 San Fran/2 Yountville). Second night is French Laundry, should our one San Fran dinner be Nopa, Flour + Water, Delfina, Cotogna or?? Some general itinerary guidance pretty please!

Good to know about Gott's. That is firmly checked off the list. Agreed that day after TFL we'll want something lighter. We haven't figured out specific vineyards yet-- but we'll likely be staying in the Napa area. I've heard wonderful things about Sonoma, but given our very limited time we're looking to spend as little time as possible in transit.

Feb 07, 2014
jdream in San Francisco Bay Area

3 Nights honeymoon (1 San Fran/2 Yountville). Second night is French Laundry, should our one San Fran dinner be Nopa, Flour + Water, Delfina, Cotogna or?? Some general itinerary guidance pretty please!

Good to know about the farmer's market... while we'd love to oogle produce, it'd be great to just get a general eye on the market overall. Our flight is at 3pm, we were thinking we'd leave Napa around 10am...

Would you do Cotogna over Nopa? Should Locanda be on the list of maybe's? We definitely want something cool, upbeat and chill (to balance out French Laundry the next night...).

I went to Bar Tartine years ago and had a unbelievable meal, though to be honest; the menu as it stands now just isn't particularly appealing.

Feb 01, 2014
jdream in San Francisco Bay Area

3 Nights honeymoon (1 San Fran/2 Yountville). Second night is French Laundry, should our one San Fran dinner be Nopa, Flour + Water, Delfina, Cotogna or?? Some general itinerary guidance pretty please!

So my fiance and I are getting married in about a month down in Mexico. We are flying up Monday evening and headed back to New York Thursday afternoon. He's a chef & I'm a somm, so needless to say meals are a big part. Additionally, we've been contemplating a move to SF to we also want to try and get a feel for things as well. Here's the plan:

Monday night we're staying at the St Regis (thank you Starwood points) and want to go out for one great dinner. Because of travel times we won't be able to get to dinner until 9pm at the earliest. We want to go somewhere great with a solid wine list and not too stuffy. We were gifted with reservations at French Laundry the next night so we are NOT looking for fine dining. Nopa, Flour + Water, Delfina or Cotogna were the spots we had narrowed it down to, but, we're open!

Tuesday morning we were going to drive to Tartine Bakery, wander around the Mission a bit and hit the road. We're planning to take the scenic route and stop at Muir Woods on the way up to Napa. Get to the hotel, have a massage and then head to our 7:30 French Laundry reservation!

Wednesday is all wineries. We haven't booked our visits yet, narrowing down where we want to go. We're not sure about lunch or dinner for this night yet? Gott's for lunch? Redd for dinner? We're totally open!

Thursday we'll drive back down. Plan is to go through San Francisco again and hit the farmers market on the way to the airport.

I know you all get one million requests for help with this stuff. If you had any suggestions or guidance it would be SO thoroughly appreciated!!

Feb 01, 2014
jdream in San Francisco Bay Area

Cabo San lucas and San Jose del cabo Restaurant recommendation...

Thought I would revive this to see if there were any new places people recommended. We were in Los Cabos last year and walked away with Hacienda Cantina y Cocina and Las Guacamayas being run away favorites. Also French Riviera for shockingly good pastries. Will definitely be returning there this year.

This is a list of spots that caught my eye this year in searching. Would love to know if anyone has thoughts on them or any other recommended spots. A little info is that we're from Manhattan (my boyfriend is a chef and I also work in the restaurant business) and are not looking to have Thai food or anything super American-y. We're open to dirty hole in the wall spots or nice restaurants. Just great food!

Nana Rosa
Meson del Angel
Barrio del Tango
Edith's
Marisco Los Toritos
El Ahorcado/The Hangman

Bonus points for great local spots or nice settings. Thanks much!

Feb 03, 2013
jdream in Mexico

Cabo San lucas and San Jose del cabo Restaurant recommendation...

I think we're going to pass on Thai when we're there. Although I'm sure it's delicious there's a ton of that in NY. Here's the final list of places I think we want to try:
Dinners:
Deckman, Nick San, Flora Farm, La Fonda, Hacienda Cocina y Cantina. We also plan to do a little taco crawl one night in San Jose and go to Guacamaya and El Ahorcado.

Lunch:
Taco Gardenia, Gordon Lele, Los Michoacanos, Marisco el Torito.

What do you think of this list? Anything we're missing or really need to add?

Jan 11, 2012
jdream in Mexico

Cabo San lucas and San Jose del cabo Restaurant recommendation...

Any recent updates to this thread? Right now on our list of maybe is:
Deckman's
Nick San
Flora's Field Kitchen
Nana Rosa
Hacienda Cantina y Cocina
Las Guacamayas
(also a handful of taco spots for lunch, Gardenia, Le Le, etc.)
Thoughts on any of these places? We're interested in high end or casual... mostly Mexican, nothing overly touristy... Just good flavors! Thanks!!

Jan 07, 2012
jdream in Mexico

Terrible Service Peasant

I'm thinking of going with my family this Wednesday... but are there any recent reports on if the downhill trend is still true?

Oct 29, 2011
jdream in Manhattan

Question about some restaurants in Rome, not often mentioned:

I appreciate all the links. However, when I click on them it doesn't seem that many have any discussions. Am I missing something?

Oct 06, 2011
jdream in Italy

Question about some restaurants in Rome, not often mentioned:

I was given a list of restaurants to try in Rome by a "restaurant person" who used to live there. A number of the places overlap with the list I've already accumulated from reading these boards (Perilli, Trattoria Monti, Checcino) and a few were places I hadn't seen come up here and I'd love to hear some thoughts...

-Al Moro

-Checco er Carettiere

-Ar Galetto

-Da Nernoe

-Gusto

-Felice

-Trattoria da Gino

-Domenica del 1968

-Da Baffetto (pizza)

Thanks so very much!

-----
Trattoria Monti
Via di San Vito,13a, Roma , IT

Oct 06, 2011
jdream in Italy

Rome: Der Pallaro, Pizzeria Pannettone, Osteria d'augusto

Quantity over quality is definitely not our thing. And since we're planning this trip in advance we fortunately have time to save and therefore don't have to be that budget conscious. I really aPpreciate thebthorough/honest feedback. I figured this would be the place to ask.

Sep 20, 2011
jdream in Italy

Rome: Der Pallaro, Pizzeria Pannettone, Osteria d'augusto

These are the places some friends/wine people recommended as their spots in Rome. I'd love to know what the consensus on this board is about them. Thanks!!

-----
Der Pallaro
Largo del Pallaro 15, Rome, Lazio 00186, IT

Sep 19, 2011
jdream in Italy

Florence & Rome area; chef & sommelier want to eat/drink right. (Jan 2012)

Alright, so after combing through some fantastic blogs and older posts, this is the initial list that I've come up with to get things going:

-Perilli
-Checchino
-La Gensola
-Glass
-Bir & Fud
-Trattoria Cadorna
-Roscioli
-Pizzarium (lunch)
-Sforno (lunch)
-Colline Emiliane
-Palatium
-Da Danilo

-Salvatore Tassa. Is this reachable from Rome and returnable that same evening? The website is very challenging to navigate?

-Any favorite lunch spot in Orvieto?

Is this a diverse enough bunch? Any other "favorite" trattoria's? Would any of other of these be good for lunch? Is there a particularly excellent place for a Sunday Roman lunch and/or dinner?

A couple other questions:
1) We'll be there in January. I know this is bean season, but we will be after truffles and before artichokes... anything else particularly good this time of year to look out for?

2) If this focus of our trip is mostly food, what would be the best neighborhood to stay in that's still central enough to get around... I was thinking Trastevere? Any favorite markets or days for markets?

3) What are some great bars (wine, beer, perfect Negroni) etc to hang out in after dinner? What time to places close on average?

As far as Florence goes I think we've decided to just go for two days and one night. Will probably do (unless these aren't good choices...):
-Nerbone
-Le Volpi e l'uva
-Due G
-Zeb and/or Semel

I know there are a lot of questions here. Hopefully I'm not pushing my luck. Thank you in advance for the help.

Sep 16, 2011
jdream in Italy

Florence & Rome area; chef & sommelier want to eat/drink right. (Jan 2012)

Thanks for the suggestion. I'll do that and return. I guess the one specific question that I'm starting off with is: any meals outside Florence or Rome but accessible by train to stay for one night that would be a fantastic more "countryside" dining experience...? Otherwise, I'll gather some questions and return.

Sep 15, 2011
jdream in Italy

Florence & Rome area; chef & sommelier want to eat/drink right. (Jan 2012)

I know that a lot has been written on Florence and Rome and I'm starting to comb through all of it. My boyfriend (a chef) and I (a sommelier) are from NYC will be spending a week in Italy in the beginning of January. I haven't been since I was a teenager and he's never been. Needless to say, food & wine are the focal point of this trip. I know that many people say that the best food in Italy isn't found in the cities. Nonetheless, we only have one week and neither of us drive so a week through the countryside didn't seem possible. I also remember passionately loving Rome when I was there 10+ years ago.

We're looking for suggestions of fancy, casual, hole in the wall, mom and pop-- you name it. We just want the most delicious food we can get while we're there. We're happy to spend money and also to slum it. We definitely want great pizza, gelato and pasta. Would love to find a place that specializes in offal. Also, if there are any restaurants that are outside of the city we're happy to go somewhere for a night for an awesome meal (assuming that it's reachable by train/taxi).

We would both really appreciate any suggestions or guidance... Thanks!!

Sep 15, 2011
jdream in Italy

best french fries

I can't even imagine what a close second would be to the Breslin's fries.

Feb 19, 2010
jdream in Manhattan

Dovetail-- recent reviews/experiences?

I'm looking to go for dinner here with my family. I had been very excited but am now hearing a lot of very very mixed reviews; from stiff service to unmemorable food to mediocre ambiance. Can anyone help me out with any honest recent rundowns?

... and the original plan was Vinegar Hill for dinner. Then we switched it to Dovetail, but now I'm wondering if we should do Vinegar Hill instead. Thoughts or further suggestions?

Not looking for anything SUPER fancy like EMP, La Bernadin, etc. One or two steps below that, good accessible food (not all adventurous eaters), but well seasoned and tasty. A good wine list and unpretentious is also key.

Thanks!

Feb 18, 2010
jdream in Manhattan

Pizza in Astoria

So I'm really curious to try LoRusso's tonight but it's quite a hike from my apartment. I don't have a menu, so what in general would be recommended? Definitely foccacia over regular pizza? Are we talking thick doughy foccacia?

Feb 15, 2010
jdream in Outer Boroughs

Birthday dinner-- Telepan, Corton, Mas or Gramercy Tavern?

Thanks so much for the feedback. I too love Eleven Madison and went for my annual fancy birthday dinner 2 years ago. I've heard too many people talk about Telepan being lackluster and I think that Corton and G.T. are slightly out of budget this year. Not to mention if Gramercy wasn't wonderful I don't want to do that and after looking at Corton again I think it's "too much" for my finicky parents.

BUT, Aldea looks perfect. Thanks so much for the suggestion. Both the menu and the space look wonderful and not over-priced or over-done. I'm really looking forward to it.

Jul 07, 2009
jdream in Manhattan

Birthday dinner-- Telepan, Corton, Mas or Gramercy Tavern?

My parents are fussy, somewhat. Over-wrought food won't work for them. Nonetheless, it's my birthday and fortunately I get to choose. These are the places that I'm thinking. Definitely want something seasonal/ingredient driven. Special, without being stuffy.

Which of these would you go to? Any other suggestions? I know Blue Hill fits, but it's not in the running. Long story. Thoughts?

Jul 06, 2009
jdream in Manhattan

Greek in Astoria

I agree that Kyclades is excellent. For a close second Akti on 30th ave is often overlooked but has wonderful food. And a whole fish there the other day, served with a little olive oil, capers and parsley-- perfectly cooked. Also the zucchini chips with tzatziki and their greek salad (ripe produce!) are excellent.

May 17, 2009
jdream in Outer Boroughs

Best Japanese in Astoria?

I was there about a week ago. Around 9pm on a Thursday and there were a few other tables. The quality of the food really is excellent. We tried the pork belly this time which was rich but well cooked/seasoned. The chirashi was great, excellent quality fish. Fresh grated wasabi, warm sushi rice. Without a doubt the best quality Japanese food in Astoria.

May 17, 2009
jdream in Outer Boroughs

4 nights in Atlanta, some help with where to eat? We've got some in mind...

Thanks for the feedback. We can't decide if Bacchanalia is really worth the splurge. So, after some rethinking, we're looking at something like this:
Saturday: Early drink/bite at Floataway and dinner at Eugene
Sunday: family time in Marietta, dinner at Tasty China?
Monday: lunch at Busy Bee's, dinner at Holeman and Finch
Tuesday: lunch Ann's Snack Shack, dinner at Watershed
Wednesday: Lunch (?), maybe Star Provisions and get some to-go for the plane?

Does that look more balanced? Still "southern overload"? We missing anywhere? Any dishes in particular we should try at these places? The area we live in in NY is famous for the it's amazing diverse ethnic cuisine. So unless there is something truly fantastic we don't want to have just a mediocre meal. That said, we don't want every meal to taste the same.

Apr 03, 2009
jdream in General South Archive

4 nights in Atlanta, some help with where to eat? We've got some in mind...

Thanks... maybe we'll check that out Sunday night since they're actually open for dinner. That would leave the itinerary something like this:
Saturday: Dinner Floataway or Bacchanalia
Sunday: Brunch Restaurant Eugene/ Dinner 6 Feet Under
Monday: Lunch Mary Mac's / Dinner Holeman & Finch
Tuesday: Lunch Souper Jenny or Fox Bros / Dinner Watershed
Wednesday: Lunch Ann's Snack Shack

How is that looking? We missing anything? Are we risking too many meals that are going to taste too alike? Thanks for the input!

Mar 31, 2009
jdream in General South Archive

4 nights in Atlanta, some help with where to eat? We've got some in mind...

We're staying at the W Downtown. We'll have a car and my boyfriend used to live in Atlanta, so he's familiar and getting around isn't a problem.

Mar 30, 2009
jdream in General South Archive

4 nights in Atlanta, some help with where to eat? We've got some in mind...

Fox Bros is the best of BBQ that we can get while we're down there?

Mar 30, 2009
jdream in General South Archive

4 nights in Atlanta, some help with where to eat? We've got some in mind...

P.S. Thoughts on Wisteria?

Mar 28, 2009
jdream in General South Archive

4 nights in Atlanta, some help with where to eat? We've got some in mind...

Unfortunately Eugene is closed on Easter Sunday, open only for brunch. Dynamic Dish is closed on Sunday and Monday-- though it does look really interesting. Any other thoughts for Sunday dinner?

How does lunch at Watershed compare to dinner? H&F, Bacchanalia/Floataway and Eugene are all only open for dinner. So if we want to hit all (and none are open Sunday) that'd be the only way to do it...

We might check out Flip Burger-- though I think part of what attracts us to Ann's is the strange experience :)

Mar 28, 2009
jdream in General South Archive

4 nights in Atlanta, some help with where to eat? We've got some in mind...

My boyfriend and I will be in in Atlanta from Saturday April 11th-Wednesday April 15th. We have a number of places in mind that we'd like to go but would also love some help adding or subtracting as necessary. The 4 dinners we had in mind were Bacchanalia or Floataway (we haven't decided if we want to splurge), Restaurant Eugene, Watershed and Holeman & Finch. The problem we're encountering is that Sunday is Easter and none of these restaurants are open. Which should we forgo? Perhaps we can do it at Brunch instead? Also, do you know of restaurants that will be open Sunday night?

Coming from NY we're most interested in Southern style cuisine or anything that's using local ingredients. For lunches the only place we definitely want to try is Ann's Snack. Any other ideas? Ideally we'd like lunch to be on the cheaper side since dinner's will be pricier.

Thanks in advance for any and all suggestions, we really appreciate it!

Mar 28, 2009
jdream in General South Archive