Sunday, December 29, 2013

Shabu-Tatsu Not Too Shabby

Shabu-Tatsu: Sake

Today we were headed to Sunrise Market in the East Village to pick-up some ramen making supplies so we finally got to try a restaurant that's been on my list for a long time now: Shabu-Tatsu. We've never had hotpot before Japanese or otherwise, so this was an exciting new adventure for the Newbie Foodies. We started with a lovely bottle of unfiltered sake and settled in to see where the meal would take us.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Gee You Should Try Yuji Ramen

Yuji Ramen in Bowery Whole Foods 
Being a huge ramen fan, I'd been hearing great things about Yuji Ramen located in the food court on the 2nd floor of Bowery Whole Foods. However, I had also heard it was a temporary pop-up shop, so I wasn't even sure if it was still there. I did hear that they were opening a second location in another location in Williamsburg though, so figured it was pretty likely. We needed to go shopping (for ramen ingredients no less) at Whole Foods so decided to find out.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Chez Napolean Conquers Our Hearts

Chez Napoleon: Escargots de Bourgogne

We've been on a bit of a French food kick since The Mr recently had the breakthrough that French food is not just hoity-toity food, but in fact buttery, culinary goodness. We were looking for a new French Bistro to try so I set out on The Googles and finally settled on Chez Napoleon. I was a bit nervous, because it had some very mixed reviews, but after reading through them, I felt like I had a pretty good picture of what kind of evening we were in for.

Wising up to Balthazar

Balthazar: Eggs Benedict
The Mr. has been on the quest to make the perfect Eggs Benedict so we wanted to try the best so we had a bar to strive for. I consulted with the internet and decided that Balthazar would be the best bet for a traditional eggs benedict done right.

Friday, December 20, 2013

The Michelin Quest: Danji

We were headed to the Booth Theatre to see The Glass Menagerie tonight, so wanted to try a new Pre-Theatre spot in Hell's Kitchen. One of our 2014 goals is to try to knock out more NYC Michelin starred restaurants so decided to try out modern Korean 1-starred Danji. The Mr. started with the Su Jung Kwa cocktail which featured rye whiskey, cinnamon, ginger, & jujube and I started with the "Korean Pear" with vodka, star anise, & cinnamon. The meal was off to a great start because these cocktails were both super delicious. I was initially excited to try the "Perfect Date" as my next drink, but was so enamored with the "Su Jung Kwa"'s cinnamony warmth that I abandoned that and we ordered another round of those.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Grimaldis: East Side Edition

Grimaldi's: Pepperoni Pizza
Did you know there's a Grimaldi's outpost in Kips Bay? We sure didn't! That is until today when we went to see The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug with a couple of friends at the Kips Bay movie theatre and they suggested grabbing some pizza for lunch. "Sure!" I said and started heading West assuming we were headed to Limelight Marketplace. "Where are you going??" said my friend as he started heading South on 2nd Ave. I tend to keep up on NYC food news so was really surprised this slipped under my radar.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Joe Bag of Doughnuts

Doughnut Plant: Marzipan, Vanilla, & Pistachio
It's been quite a while since I originally posted about Doughnut Plant, so just wanted to do a quick update post that this place is still our favorite doughnut place in NYC and one of our favorite treats. Paired with a cup of Joe's Ethiopia Coffee this duo makes the perfect weekend morning in.

Special shout out to the special Holiday Marzipan Yeast doughnut. Mmmmmm....doughnuts.

Doughnut Plant on Urbanspoon

Joe the art of coffee on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Press Dinner: MASQ

MASQ | Moscow Mule
I was invited to try a tasting of the offerings at MASQ a New American restaurant with a distinctive New Orleans flair. The restaurant is a collaboration between a husband and wife team and Chef Marc Getzelman. Their love of NOLA is reflected in the decor of the floor-through layout which features a horseshoe shaped bar in the front, the dining room, lounge, and private party room in the back.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

NewbieFoodies Tour East Williamsburg

Huckleberry Bar | Bacon Wrapped Dates & Mac 'n Cheese
OK folks, I was traveling light for this mini-bar crawl which means iPhone pictures in very dim lighting. However, unlike these photos, the quality of food/drinks we enjoyed were top notch. The backstory is that we had tickets to go see Then She Fell, an immersive theatre experience at Greenpoint Hospital. This was actually our second visit and last time we had dinner in Manhattan before heading out to the area, but passed so many really neat looking bars on our way. We only had time to head into one for a quick drink and decided we were really missing out by not exploring this neighborhood.

So for visit number two, we decided to do it right:

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Ra! Ra! for Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop

Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop: Shio Ramen 
I was pretty excited about the opening of Gotham West Market, since well, 11th Ave is pretty much no-man's land at the moment. But then we got pretty darn excited when we learned that it would be home to Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop. We'd seen Ivan Orkin on "Mind of a Chef" and couldn't believe that we'd have an outpost within a mile of our apartment.

Monday, December 2, 2013

The Mr. Can Cook: Pork Belly Ramen

Pork Belly Ramen

The Mr. continues his adventures in ramen cooking with this, his latest masterpiece using a pork belly based broth.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

What a peach! Ma Peche

Ma Peche | Fried Brussels Sprouts
We've been David Chang fans from almost the instant we set down in NYC as Momofuku Noodle Bar was one of the first restaurant we were taken to to initiate us as legit New Yorkers. However, we tend to keep doing repeat visits and haven't taken the opportunity to try his other fine dining establishments. Tonight, that finally changed...

Friday, November 15, 2013

Cafe 57 How do I love thee?

Cafe 57: Pecan Croissant Donut
I have the distinct pleasure of working in the Hearst Tower and therefore get to enjoy the offerings of Cafe 57 on an almost daily basis. I'm always impressed with the quality and diversity of their offerings, so though I was very pleasantly surprised to see a Cronut impersonator delivered from their kitchens, I was not shocked. This was actually my first experience with a cronut-like creation and it was an absolute delight. I expected it to be pretty darn good, but this far surpassed my expectations. Kudos to the Cafe 57 Chefs!

Cafe 57 on Urbanspoon

The Mr. Can Cook: Tantanmmen!

Well aren't I the luckiest gal? Riding off of the high of the success of his ramen earlier this week, tonight we dined in for date night and made some Tantanmen (using this recipe from Cooking with Dog).

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Two Texans Two Boots To Go West

Garlic & Bayou Beast

We absolutely love our favorite local pizza joint Patsy's, but living in NYC has taught us that yes- you can have too much of a good thing. We wanted the convenience and share-ability of pizza, but were looking to mix it up a bit so decided to try Two Boots.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The Mr. Can Cook: Ramen!

The Mr's Ramen

A special edition where The Mr. cooks dinner. As you can see, he subscribes to the "Go Big or Go Home" life philosophy, so when he says he'll make some ramen, he makes some RAMEN. Man knows how to plate!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Parm does no harm

Were running errands this afternoon in SoHo and were hungry for a very late lunch. I really wanted to try Torrisi Italian Specialties which has been on my list forever, but given the odd time (~3:30pm) it fell in between the awkward closed for lunch, not yet open for dinner window. But wait! Didn't I hear the Torrisi folks opened up a casual spot right next door? Well that works too.

We walked in to the kitchy shop and settled into our table to peruse the menu. It didn't take us long to decide on the Calamari, Pizza Knots, and a Meatball Parm Hero...

Friday, November 8, 2013

Izakaya MEW: Must. Eat. Weekly.

MEW: Potato Croquettes & Sake
We absolutely love our neighborhood Izakaya, Izakaya Ten and would really like to be able to say "It's our favorite Izakaya in NYC" except up until tonight, it was the only Izakaya we've been to in NYC. When we found ourselves hungry in midtown tonight it seemed like the perfect opportunity to try another so I whipped out my smartphone and off we went to MEW Izakaya.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Keen on Keens Steakhouse

Keen's Steakhouse: Creamed Spinach, Potatoes, & Prime Rib
Confession time folks: this was actually our second visit to legendary Keen's Steakhouse. But we liked it so much that we returned quickly and I didn't even have time to write a post about it yet. When our favorite steak place Dylan Prime closed earlier this year we were at a loss so I put together a list of new steakhouses to try. We tried and really enjoyed Del Frisco's, but Keen's historic status really piqued my interest, so when we were celebrating my first project launch at my new job, this is where we headed.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Austin Edition: Gourdoughs Public House

Top: Ron Burgundy & Mother Clucker
Bottom: Dirty South

I was in Austin for the weekend for Austin City Limits Music Festival. After 2 glorious days, I woke up on Sunday refreshed and full of energy- especially excited for the lineup. However, I was quickly informed of the cancellation. My friends and I went through the stages of grief and when we were done decided to meet up for Brunch. Luckily, one of my friends still lives in Austin and is a foodie so knew just where we should meet: Gourdough's Public House. And so, we drowned our sorrows in DOUGHNUTS!

Austin Edition: ACL Eats

Salt Lick & Chi'lantro Picnic

When you live in Austin, going to Austin City Limits Festival seems like a total pain in the behind. Then, when you leave Austin, you kick yourself in the behind for not going. This year we had the pleasure of attending 2/3 of ACL (3rd day was rained out) with some of my best pals. Here's a look at the fantastic offerings at Austin Eats.

For dinner on Friday, we made ourselves a mini picnic with our friends and shared a Pork Rib Boat, Chopped Beef Sandwiches, and Sloppy Nachos from The Salt Lick with a side of The Original Kimchi Fries from Chi'lantro.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

San Antonio Edition: Ocho & Dough

In San Antonio for business and a coworker led us to this charming little lounge called Ocho where we enjoyed a lunch sitting outside overlooking the river. We split the Salsa Platter which included guac and some pickled vegetables. When it came time to order, we were surprised to realize we had all chosen the Haute Hippie Torta with Black Bean Hummus, Avocado, Tomato, Swiss Cheese, and Sprouts served with seasoned potato chips.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

San Antonio Edition: Stella Public House

Stella Public House: Roasted Summer Squash
Was in San Antonio on a business trip and the coworker I was traveling with is known for being a pizza connoisseur so wherever he goes, people want to take him to their favorite pizza spot to get his official opinion. This is how we wound up at Stella Public House in the Blue Star Arts Complex. To start, we split the Roasted Summer Squash starter which was a perfect way to whet our appetites for the main course: pizza!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Houston Edition: Crisp & The Breakfast Klub

Breakfast Klub: Chicken & Waffles

Traveled to Houston for work this week and was looking forward to a food detox, but that was before I discovered that the coworker that I was traveling with is an amazing Food Tour Guide. He would probably shy away from the "foodie" title, but dude knows good food. Especially when it comes to his area of expertise: pizza.

On our first night in town we met up with a former colleague to try out Crisp. This place has been getting a lot of buzz in the Houston scene for their pizza, so everyone wanted to get his take. 

San Antonio Edition: Green Vegetarian Cuisine

Green Vegetarian Cuisine: Buffalo Fingers & Cece's Stir Fry

I was in Texas on a work trip with a pretty awesome coworker who was spot on with his restaurant recommendations. So when we rolled into San Antonio and mentioned Green Vegetarian Cuisine I was all on board. We went to the Pearl Brewery location which was a pretty cool little area. Having been before, my coworker insisted we get the Buffalo Fingers appetizer and I was more than happy to give them a try.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Gotta give it up for the Ippudo Westside

Ippudo Westside: Shishito Pepper
Ippudo is one of our favorite Ramen places in the city, so when we heard they'd be opening up a new location on the Westside we made sure to head there as soon as we could. We took our seats at the bar, ordered a couple of Sapporos and the Shishito Pepper, and settled in.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Gee, I know this great Italian Place: Giano!

Giano Restaurant
Tonight, I was invited to try Giano and as I walked down the street past some of my favorite East Village restaurants, I was excited because to hold your own in this neighborhood, you have to be something special. I walked in and was immediately enchanted. I'm pleased because usually I don't get great interior shots, but I really love how this one captures the restaurant.

The weather is just starting to cool, so it was just a little too chilly to dine in the back garden, but it was still nice enough to leave the entire front part of the restaurant open and enjoy the evening. Our first plate of the evening was a trio of Appetizers: 

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Press Dinner: The MasalaWala

Mumbai Samosa

I was invited to a press dinner to get a taste of what father/son run The MasalaWala has to offer. The restaurant is a cozy cafe that serves their favorite street food recipes selected from all across Southern Asia. By offering a taste of popular dishes from all across India and even some from Pakistan and Sri Lanka, their hope is to expose New York diners to Indian Cuisine beyond the standards like Chicken Tikka Masala and Lamb Vindaloo.

However, that is not to say that you can't find some of those favorites here. Case in point, we started with a taste of their Mango Lassi and an order of their Samosas. Such a pleasant surprise to find samosas made in-house and not frozen/store-bought!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Channeling Gay Paris at Creperie

House Special Crepe 
After walking off some of our amazing dinner at The Boil, we found ourselves in Greenwich Village ready for a bite of something sweet. The Mr. knew just the spot to go. We quickly found ourselves at The Creperie ordering the House Special Crepe with Tiramisu, Nutella, Strawberries and Whipped Cream. It was like a little taste of heaven and was the perfect end to a wonderful evening.

Picture of The Creperie after the jump so you know what to look for...

A Rolling Good Time at The Boil

The Boil
Tis the season for crawfish boils if you live in the South. I've been salivating over all of our friends in Texas' photos on Facebook and recently asked The Mr. if he's ever attended such an event. He had, but just remembered them being more work than worth it.

So imagine my surprise when he asked if I wanted crawfish for dinner tonight! I guess our conversation had sparked some hidden craving and he used the magic of The Internets to find The Boil. We tried to get there on the early side (before 7pm) to avoid a wait, but no such luck. We were quoted an hour wait for a party of 2.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Sel et Poivre: Give me some of that yum-yum

Calves Liver a la Lyonnaise
It's been a while since I first visited Sel et Poivre as I live and work on the West side of this lovely island and getting to the UES is, well, a bit of a trek. However, when an important appointment brought me there this evening, I was very excited to revisit this gem. I was also interested in revisiting "undercover" since my previous visit had been for a press dinner (original Sel et Poivre review).

Monday, August 12, 2013

Incognito: A Well Kept Secret

Sausage & Prosciutto Pizza
I have walked down 18th Street many a time, but a couple of weeks ago I noticed a new spot called Incognito Bistro. Shortly after, I was invited to come try it out. Then I learned that it's not actually a new restaurant, but that they were just very aptly named. However, they've made a few changes recently which is why I suddenly noticed it and had the opportunity to try it out.

Now if you are reading this review because you are considering going to Incognito, I can save you a lot of time. Stop thinking about it and GO. However, if you want to see some gorgeous food photos and torture yourself by reading about delicious food that you aren't eating right now, then by all means, continue.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Blossom doesn't make me say "Whoa!"

Pistachio & Pepper Dusted Tofu

Blossom has been on our neighborhood "to try" list for quite some time now and tonight we were in the mood for lighter fare. We had a mini-love affair with Pure Food & Wine when we lived over in the Flatiron District and we've enjoyed picking up quick bites from their Blossom Du Jour spot, so we were excited to see what Blossom had to offer.

We entered into an intimate, elegantly-casual dining room and quickly made our selection. The Mr. ordered the Pistachio & Pepper Dusted Tofu (served with a root vegetable crepe, lemon truffle emulsion, frisée in red beet vinaigrette) and I chose the Vegetable Mezze Plate (green & yellow wax beans, escarole & cannellini beans, summer squash & corn, sautéed kale, purple yam purée, spiced quinoa pilaf, tahini spirulina).

Monday, August 5, 2013

Tasting the Rainbow at Big Gay Ice Cream

{ Big Gay Ice Cream Shop }
After an incredible dinner at Flex Mussels, I wanted to continue a perfect evening, so I dragged The Mr. over to Big Gay Ice Cream Shop. I've been hearing about how amazeballs it is for years, and tonight was my night.

Flex is So Strong

Thai Mussel Pot
We've been enjoying the heck outta Mussels this summer at our local favorite spot Mrkt. Today we happened to be walking around Meatpacking when the Mussels craving hit, so we decided to head to Flex Mussels which I'd heard good things about and was much closer. I wanted to eat outside since it was such a perfect day, but one glance inside and I changed my mind.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Ahoy! 'wichcraft are you sailing aboard?

Sweet Potato Sandwich

I was excited to find that 'wichcraft is now open in Chelsea Piers. They took over the location where Stonyfield Farms used to be and this is a great move. The location is perfect for some grab-and-go breakfast/lunch fare, but Stonyfield just had too many logistical issues to make it work. 'wichcraft has fixed the layout and narrowed down the menu to make this little spot all set up for success- especially once the warmer weather hits!

Note that while they paired down the menu, they do have some additional items not available at other 'wichcraft locations. View the Chelsea Piers Menu.

I decided to try the Sweet Potato: black olives, basil, goat cheese & mozzarella on grilled country bread. Declicious! I expect no less from them and am excited to have a new lunch spot nearby!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Holding Office Hours at Oficina Latina

Oficina Latina
(Press Photo)
I've had Oficina Latina bookmarked for several months now, so imagine my excitement when I was invited to a press dinner to finally check out what they have to offer. As soon as I walked in, I knew I was in for a fabulous evening. The decor used vintage office furniture and items, yet managed to be inviting and welcoming. (Note: the photo above is the only one not taken by me, I always have a hard time with interior shots in a dark and bustling restaurant).

Saturday, January 19, 2013

LI Edition: C'est Cheese in Port Jeff

C'est Cheese!

We go out to Long Island quite frequently, but I never do write ups about the restaurants we go to because I tend to keep the focus of this blog about New York City spots. However, this weekend we discovered the most marvelous C'est Cheese in Port Jeff and it was so amazing that I just had to share it with the world.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Life's a Beach at Beecher's

Cheese Curds

Beecher's Handmade Cheese Shop was under construction the majority of the year that we lived around the corner in the Flatiron/Gramercy area. Sadly, it was not completed before we moved away. I never really understood why it took so long to make a cheese store- that is until we walked by there this afternoon.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Wasting Time at Melt Shop

Melt Shop
The Mr. loves him a good breakfast sandwich and I keep reading that Melt Shop is quite the contender in this arena. Unfortunately, we arrived after noon, which is when they stop serving breakfast. We were disappointed of course, but quickly consoled by the promise of grilled cheese.