Category Archives: CUISINES

Dinner with Chopped star Ted Allen at Pok Pok Ny hosted by Pepcid/ Eater

Dinner with Chopped star Ted Allen at Pok Pok Ny hosted by Pepcid/ Eater

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Pok Pok NY on Urbanspoon

 

Disclaimer: I was invited as a guest to this establishment for a complimentary meal. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.

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Lure Fish Bar, Soho, NYC

Lure Fish Bar, Soho, NYC

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Lure Fishbar on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $$$

Must try: Big Bash Burger, Lobster Roll

 

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Brunch at Lafayette, Greenwich Village, NYC

Brunch at Lafayette, Greenwich Village, NYC

 

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Lafayette on Urbanspoon

 
Food: ☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆☆

Cost: $$$

Must try: Soft Scrambled Eggs Vol-Au-Vent

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Nom Wah Tea Parlor, Chinatown, New York

Nom Wah Tea Parlor, Chinatown, New York

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Nom Wah Tea Parlor on Urbanspoon

 

 

Food: ☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆

Ambiance: ☆☆ ½

Cost: $$$

Must try: Rice-noodle rolls, Shrimp and Chive Dumpling

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Umami Burger, Greenwich Village, NYC

Umami Burger, Greenwich Village, NYC

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Umami Burger on Urbanspoon

 

 

Food: ☆☆☆½

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆ ½

Cost: $$

Must try: Hatch Burger, Thin Fries

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Jaiya Thai, Murray Hill/ Yorkville, NYC

Jaiya Thai, Murray Hill/ Yorkville, NYC

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Jaiya on Urbanspoon

Jaiya Thai on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆ ½

Ambiance: ☆☆ ½

Cost: $$

Must try: Special Sauce, Indian Curry, Laad Na

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Musical Mondays and Le Cirque’s 40th Anniversary at Le Cirque Café

Musical Mondays and Le Cirque’s 40th Anniversary at Le Cirque Café

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Le Cirque Cafe on Urbanspoon

 

Disclaimer: I was invited as a guest to this establishment for a complimentary meal. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.

 

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Da Marcella, West Village, NYC

Da Marcella, West Village, NYC

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Da Marcella on Urbanspoon

 

Disclaimer: I was invited as a guest to this establishment for a complimentary meal. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.

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Angus Club Steakhouse, Midtown East, NYC

Angus Club Steakhouse, Midtown East, NYC

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Angus Club Steakhouse on Urbanspoon

Disclaimer: I was invited as a guest to this establishment for a complimentary meal. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.

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Pastai: An Artisan Pasta Bar, Chelsea, NYC

Pastai: An Artisan Pasta Bar, Chelsea, NYC

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Pastai on Urbanspoon
Disclaimer: I was invited as a guest to this establishment for a complimentary meal. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.

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Madangsui, Midtown West, NYC

Madangsui, Midtown West, NYC

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Madangsui on Urbanspoon

Disclaimer: I was invited as a guest to this establishment for a complimentary meal. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.

 

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Spot Dessert Bar, East Village, NYC

Spot Dessert Bar, East Village, NYC

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Spot Dessert Bar on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆½

Cost: $$

Must try: Chocolate Green Tea Lava Cake, The Harvest 

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Sel et Poivre, Upper East Side, NYC

Sel et Poivre, Upper East Side, NYC

 

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Sel Et Poivre on Urbanspoon

Disclaimer: I was invited as a guest to this establishment for a complimentary meal. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.

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LIC Market, Long Island City, NYC

LIC Market, Long Island City, NYC

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LIC Market on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆☆½

Cost: $$

Must try: Frittata, Soups, Brownie

 

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Milkflower, Astoria, NYC

Milkflower, Astoria, NYC

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Milkflower on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆½

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆☆½

Cost: $$

Must try: Meatballs, Queen, Brussels Sprout

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Dovetail, Upper West Side, NYC

Dovetail, Upper West Side, NYC

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Dovetail on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½ 

Ambiance: ☆☆☆

Cost: $$$ 

Must try: Potato Gnocchi, Hamachi, Cured Carrots, Chocolate soufflé

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Hakkasan, Midtown West, NYC

Hakkasan, Midtown West, NYC

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Hakkasan on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆☆½

Cost: $$$$

Must try: Dim Sum, pumpkin-duck puffs, Chicken Sanpei

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The Butcher Bar, Astoria, NYC

The Butcher Bar, Astoria, NYC

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Butcher Bar on Urbanspoon

 

 

Food: ☆☆☆½

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆☆

Cost: $$

Must try: Pulled Pork, Marinated Chicken

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Thelewala, Greenwich Village, NYC

Thelewala, Greenwich Village, NYC

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Thelewala on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆½

Service: ☆☆☆

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $

Must try: Chicken Phall Roll

Thelewala, as its name suggests, has recreated the street food experience right here in New York City.

 Situated on MacDougal Street amongst numerous tiny eateries, Thelewala offers stiff competition to Kathi Roll Company that is situated diagonally across.

The concise menu here offers uncommon variations on kati rolls which they call “Famous Nizami Rolls”. There are several fillings one can choose from with both vegetarian and non- vegetarian options. My favorite was the spicy Chicken Phall Roll.

Thelewala also offers other street style food ubiquitous in Kolkata. Do try their Jaal Moori which is a riff on the more common bhelpuri. It is prepared with puffed rice, peanuts, red onions, potatoes, lime and oil (ask for mustard oil which is the authentic version vs. olive oil)

The owner Shiva Natarajan’s who also owns Chola, Dhaba, Bhojan and more, is a native of Kolkata – where street food reigns supreme. As I too am of similar origins, I can tell you that Thelewala is the real deal.

 Here is some of what we ate:

 

Phuchka

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Jaal Moori

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Chicken Malai Roll

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Chicken Phall Roll

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Restaurant Information


* Restaurant Name
Thelewala
* Overall
★★★☆☆
* Neighborhood / Cuisine
West Village / Thai
* Street Address
112 MacDougal St. (Between Minetta Ln. & Bleecker St.), New York, NY 10012
* Phone
(212) 614-9100
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Bohemian, Greenwich Village, NYC

Bohemian, Greenwich Village, NYC

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Bohemian on Urbanspoon

 

 

 

Food: ☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½ 

Ambiance: ☆☆☆

Cost: $$$ 

Must try:The Bohemian Tasting

 

Ever done the secret dining circuit in New York? If not then Bohemian is a great place to start.

There is such a thrill in going to that clandestine, unmarked restaurant with no published phone number that is hidden away behind a Japanese butchers store. I was expecting a super snobby, exclusive chic kind of atmosphere but what lies behind Bohemian’s doors totally disarms all of that.

 

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Once you are buzzed in, the entire mystique melts away and what you are left with is a really inviting space, which feels more like being in someone’s living room. Here you are served rather remarkable fare by the nicest of people. Trust the Japanese to create the ultimate speakeasy!

 

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At Bohemian, chef Kiyo Shinoki prepares Japanese inspired creative plates that are artful both in composition and presentation. Each dish is thoughtfully created blending Japanese cooking techniques to maximize flavors.

The Bohemian Tasting for $55 (6 courses) is a very reasonable offering which allows you to sample an array of different tastes. There also is a full bar with an assortment of Asian inspired cocktails.

Bohemian has a very a stringent reservation policy which is by phone only. They also ask for a referral when you call in.

Bohemian respectfully requests that their “secret phone number” not be published anywhere but if you ask nicely…I might just share with you!

Here is some of what we ate:

 

Farmer’s Fresh Vegetables Fondue

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Washu-Beef Short Rib Sashimi

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Uni Croquette

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Pan Roasted Branzini

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Washu-Beef Mini Burger

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House Caviar Rice Bowl

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Foie Gras Soba

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Honey Lemon Pannacotta

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Restaurant Information


* Restaurant Name
Bohemian
* Overall
★★★☆☆
* Neighborhood / Cuisine
East Village / Japanese / Steak
* Street Address
57 Great Jones St. (bet. Bowery & Lafayette St.), New York, NY 10012
* Phone
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The Nipponista Event at Maison O hosted by Isetan, Soho, NYC

The Nipponista Event at Maison O hosted by Isetan, Soho, NYC

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Last night I was invited by Tabélog to attend ‘Nipponista‘, an event hosted by Isetan, the largest department store in Japan. Nipponista is part of a Japanese project called ‘Cool Japan’ and was created to transmit Japanese fashion, art and food information throughout the world.

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El Anzuelo Fino, Jackson Heights, NYC

El Anzuelo Fino, Jackson Heights, NYC

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El Anzuelo Fino on Urbanspoon

El Anzuelo Fino on Urbanspoon
Disclaimer: I was invited as a guest to this establishment for a complimentary meal. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.

I was recently invited to El Anzuelo Fino, a family owned Peruvian restaurant, which has locations in Jackson Heights and Woodside in Queens.

What I went in expecting was a Pio- Pio styled Peruvian meal (not that there’s anything wrong with that) but the experience I came away with was something completely different.

Boris Torres, the son and face of the next generation at El Anzuelo Fino, is a professionally trained chef as well as an architect.

Both professions require fashioning an art form and that is exactly what Torres does on the plate. He is a truly gifted chef who is pushing the boundaries of Peruvian food into modernity whilst still staying close its roots and heritage.

Torres schooled me throughout the meal on the complexity, depth and phenomenal ethnic influences that have fashioned Peruvian cuisine. Each dish that was presented to me had a little history lesson on how its flavors borrowed from its cultural past.

Be it African, Chinese – “Chifa”, Japanese –“Nikkei”, Spanish or Italian, Torres’s creations pay true homage to a gastronomic heritage that is so rich. Take the classic favorite “Lomo Saltado” for example, which is made with sautéed beef tips, onions, tomatoes, reduced with soy sauce and served over French fries. What seems like a crazy combination of flavors actually works beautifully! Look at all the cross cultural pollination going on in that dish!

The Anticuchos con Papa or veal hearts drew on African heritage whilst their superb Ceviche draws on Spanish influences.

At El Anzuelo Fino, do not miss trying the Corvina, which is a firm-fleshed South American fish. We sampled a Ceviche and  an “A-la- Plancha” version of this fish and both dishes were spectacular.

El Anzuelo Fino, in my opinion is truly a gem of a find. Located in its unassuming digs one can really find artful creations of seriously tasty, home-style Peruvian food here.

I, for one, am a fan!

 

Here is some of what we ate:

 

Canch

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Ceviche de Corvina

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Anticuchos Con Papa Y Choclo

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Pulpo al Olivo

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Corvina A La Plancha

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Lomo Saltado

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Restaurant Information


* Restaurant Name
El Anzuelo Fino
* Overall
★★★☆☆
* Neighborhood / Cuisine
Jackson Heights / Peruvian
* Street Address
8601 Northern Blvd., Jackson Heights, NY 11372
* Phone
(718) 426-8660
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El Maguey y La Tuna, Lower East Side, NYC

El Maguey y La Tuna, Lower East Side, NYC

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El Maguey y La Tuna on Urbanspoon

 

Disclaimer: I was invited as a guest to this establishment for a complimentary meal. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.

I was recently invited for a press dinner at El Maguey y La Tuna, a family run Mexican restaurant on the Lower East Side.

Dressed in simple yet homey surroundings, El Maguey y La Tuna is exactly the kind of place at which I would have hoped to find the BEST Mole Poblano I have tasted in New York City!

There is a reason why this dish is so good here. It is hand made from scratch over several days by Mama Cortez who doesn’t even use as much as a blender to aid her art.

Preserving family recipes is what makes El Maguey y La Tuna a rather unique spot. Every dish on their menu has a reason for being there. The origins could be from a grandmother, aunt or uncle or a favorite post-hangover remedy (that’s where the Chilaquiles come in).

The daughter Maria, who usually handles the front end of the restaurant, is equally adept at cooking and managing the kitchen when she is needed to do so. Here, everything is a family affair.

El Maguey y La Tuna offers a wonderful selection of food from rural Mexico in a place that tastes and feels like home. They have a full-service sit-down bar with specialty cocktails such as Jalapeno Margaritas, Dessert wines and Mexican Beers. They also offer Brunch on weekends for $11.95 which includes a cocktail! 

With food so good, people so authentic and a price point so reasonable, I don’t see why El Maguey y La Tuna will not be on my multiple return list!

 

Here is some of what we ate:

 

Margarita with Jalapeño

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Ponche

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Taquitos Al Guacamole

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Chiles Rellenos

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Tacos de Pescado

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Mole Poblano

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Maria’s Mole Rojo

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Pinto Beans and Rice

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Chilaquiles

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Black Beans and Rice

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Homemade Mexican Chocolate Cake

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Banana Pinata

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Restaurant Information


* Restaurant Name
El Maguey Y La Tuna Mexican Restaurant
* Overall
★★★☆☆
* Neighborhood / Cuisine
Lower East Side / Mexican
* Street Address
321 E Houston St, New York, NY 10002
* Phone
(212) 473-3919
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Uncle Boons, Nolita, NYC

Uncle Boons, Nolita, NYC

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Uncle Boons on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆½

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆☆½

Cost: $$$

Must try: Chicken and Banana Blossom Salad, Khao Soi, Grilled Blowfish Tails

  

Uncle Boons is a wonderful downtown dining spot serving uncommon Thai fare.

This eatery was opened the by husband and wife team of Ann Redding and Matt Danzer, both of ex- Per Se pedigree.

The menu here shies away from the regular Thai offerings of copious amounts of curries, noodles, satays and so on. The selection here is limited but in a thoughtful way.

Many of the recipes used in the kitchen are handed down from Redding’s family – who was born in Thailand. Where else can one try delicate dish of tender charcoal-grilled blowfish tails served with a fresh green chili sauce or chicken and banana blossom salad with several layers of flavor and texture in every bite. The Khao Soi is a must try dish consisting of a flavorful yellow curry served with both soft and crunchy noodles.

The one thing I missed at Uncle Boons was spice. The menu seems to focus more on the gentler side of Thai food which is refreshing too.

At Uncle Boons the attention seems to be on creating a culinary experience that is a little set apart from the rest and yet authentic in its core.

Here is some of what we ate:

 

Spicy Roasted Chicken & Banana Blossom Salad

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Steamed Egg wrapped in Red Curry & Kaffir Lime

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Northern Style Golden Curry (Khao Soi)

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Grilled Blowfish Tails

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Water Spinach with Garlic

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Restaurant Information


* Restaurant Name
Uncle Boons
* Overall
★★★☆☆
* Neighborhood / Cuisine
Lower East Side / Thai
* Street Address
7 Spring St. (Between Bowery & Elizabeth St.), New York, NY 10012
* Phone
(646) 370-6650
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Masq, Midtown East, NYC

Masq, Midtown East, NYC

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MASQ on Urbanspoon

Disclaimer: I was invited as a guest to this establishment. All opinions expressed in this post are my own.

I was recently invited to a press dinner at Masq which is Midtown’s little gem offering innovative American Cuisine with a New Orleans flair.

The space occupies the first floor of a townhouse and is spread over four distinctive areas that flow one into the other. There is a full-service sit-down bar located in the front of the restaurant, which has a really cool horseshoe-shaped white oak bar. Here one can choose from a variety of New Orleans inspired specialty cocktails, an impressive selection of global wines and other premium liquors.

 

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The restaurant then continues into a Lounge area decorated with eclectic vintage furniture and masks which leads into the main dining room. There is also private party area called “The Red Room” located in the back, which makes for a perfect space to host an intimate gathering of up to 45 people.

 

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Co-owners George Chaprastian and Executive Chef Marc Getzelman make for a dynamic duo who truly have a passion for what they have created here at Masq. The place exudes warmth and hospitality from the minute you step in.

 

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Chef Getzelman offers some really innovative fare with his New Orleans-inspired menu. You feast on delicious Mac ‘n Cheese croquettes, Crawfish Étouffée, Po’ Boys and their signature Jambalaya tempered with goat cheese amongst other wonderful eats. Do NOT miss dessert – their Sabayon was really refreshing and delicious.

With a spot like Masq in our midst, one doesn’t have to travel far to celebrate Mardi Gras coz here “It’s Always Fat Tuesday!”

 

Here is some of what we ate:

 

MAC ‘N CHEESE CROQUETTES

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PROSCIUTTO FIG FLATBREADS

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SHRIMP & CATFISH PO’ BOYS

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CRAWFISH ETOUFFEE

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JAMBALAYA

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SABAYON

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Restaurant Information


* Restaurant Name
MASQ Restaurant & Lounge
* Overall
★★★☆☆
* Neighborhood / Cuisine
Midtown East / American New
* Street Address
306 East 49th St. (Between 1st Ave. & 2nd Ave.), New York, NY 10017
* Phone
(212) 644-8294
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