Category Archives: Cheap Eats

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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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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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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Pommes Frites, East Village, NYC

Pommes Frites, East Village, NYC

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Pommes Frites on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆ ½

Service: ☆☆ ½

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $

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Roka Turkish Cuisine, Kew Gardens, NYC

Roka Turkish Cuisine, Kew Gardens, NYC

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Roka Turkish Cuisine on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆☆

Ambiance: ☆☆☆

Cost: $$

Must try: Everything!! Acili Ezme, Babaganush , Adana Kebab, Kalamar

(This meal was complimentary which did not affect my review.)

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Little Fox Café, NoLita, NYC

Little Fox Café, NoLita, NYC

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Little Fox Cafe on Urbanspoon

 

 

Food: ☆☆☆½

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆☆½

Cost: $

(This meal was complimentary which did not affect my review.)

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The Masala Wala, Lower East Side, NYC

The Masala Wala, Lower East Side, NYC

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The MasalaWala on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆☆

Ambiance: ☆☆ ½

Cost: $$

Must try: Kakori Kabab, Dahi Puri, Lamb Biryani, Gobhi Manchurian

(This meal was complimentary which did not affect my review.)

 

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Dos Toros, West Village, NYC

Dos Toros, West Village, NYC

 

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Dos Toros Taqueria on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆½

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $$

Must try: Burrito with habanero sauce and quesadilla

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Luke’s Lobster, Upper East Side, NYC

Luke’s Lobster, Upper East Side, NYC

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Luke's Lobster on Urbanspoon
 

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $$

Must try: Lobster and Shrimp rolls

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Moustache, West Village, NYC

Moustache, West Village, NYC

 

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Moustache on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $$$

Must try: Baba ghannouj, Pita bread

 

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Lao Dong Bei, Flushing, NYC

Lao Dong Bei, Flushing, NYC

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Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆

Cost: $

Must try: Crispy Sliced Fish with Cumin, Triple Delight Vegetable, Stir Fried Mountain Root Vegetable with Pork

 

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Arepas Cafe, Astoria, NYC

Arepas Cafe, Astoria, NYC

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Arepas Café on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆ ¾ 

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $$

Must try: Reina Arepas

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Bi Lokma, Midtown East, NYC

Bi Lokma, Midtown East, NYC

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Bi Lokma on Urbanspoon

  

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $$

Must try: Musakka, Chicken Adana,

 

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Sripraphai, Woodside, NYC

Sripraphai, Woodside, NYC

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Sripraphai on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $$$

Must try: Chicken Satay, Tom Yum, Green Curry with Roasted Duck, Chu-Chee Shrimp

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Pok Pok Phat Thai, Lower East Side, NYC

Pok Pok Phat Thai, Lower East Side, NYC

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Pok Pok Phat Thai on Urbanspoon
 
Food: ☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆

Ambiance: ☆ ½

Cost: $$

Must try: Kuaytiaw Khua Kai

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Pacificana, Sunset Park, Brooklyn

Pacificana, Sunset Park, Brooklyn

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Pacificana on Urbanspoon

 

 

Food: ☆☆☆½

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆☆½

Cost: $$$

Must try: Shrimp and Chive Dim Sum

 

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Biang! Flushing, NYC

Biang! Flushing, NYC

 

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Biang! on Urbanspoon
Food: ☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $$$

Must try: Any lamb and noodle dish

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Economy Candy, Lower East Side, NYC

Economy Candy, Lower East Side, NYC

Economy Candy located on Rivington Street in the Lower East Side of Manhattan is a New York institution that has been around since 1937. Owned by Jerry Cohen, this sweet stop is stacked with floor to ceiling racks filled with every imaginable kind of candy.

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Zabb Elee, Woodside, NYC

Zabb Elee, Woodside, NYC

 

 

Zabb Elee on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $$

Must try: Kai Yang, Crab Fried Rice, Larb, Spicy Shrimp with Basil, Pad Thai

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Pancho Villa Taqueria, San Francisco,CA

Pancho Villa Taqueria, San Francisco,CA

 

 

Pancho Villa Taqueria on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆½

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $

Must try: The salsa bar, any burrito

 

There is a reason why the Espinoza brothers Taqueria has been thriving in the wildly competitive Mission District of San Francisco for many decades now.

 Pancho Villa hits a home run when it comes to satisfying that burrito craving that one often gets. Delivering authentic, fresh Mexican food in huge portions has garnered this spot a huge fan following and several awards over the years.

 The line is out the door starting pretty early in the day. Service is helpful and pleasant and the digs are clean enough. What rocks is the fresh salsa bar they have the back of the restaurant, which serves up some of the most unique and tastiest salsas, I have had.

 Pancho Villa has all the ingredients in being the a cut above it’s competitive rest.

 

Here is some of what we ate:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Restaurant Information


* Restaurant Name
Pancho Villa Taqueria
* Overall
★★★☆☆
* Neighborhood / Cuisine
Mexican
* Street Address
3071 16th Street , San Francisco, CA 94103
* Phone
(415) 864-8840

Momofuku Noodle Bar, East Village, NYC

Momofuku Noodle Bar, East Village, NYC

 

Momofuku Noodle Bar on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆☆½

Cost: $$

Must try: Pork Bun, Shrimp Bun
 

Momofuku Noodle Bar was David Chang’s very first eatery that launched his enormously successful Momofuku brand of restaurants.

The concise menu here primarily focuses on ramen, seasonal eats, buns and daily specials. They also offer a fried chicken dinner (priced at $100) for parties of 4-8, which must be reserved in advance. Dessert offers soft serve and cake truffles.

Chang’s eats are inventive and extremely gratifying. The Ramen was good enough though I still think Ippudo rules. However, what I just could not stop eating were the buns! These soft steamed beauties filled with melt in your mouth pork belly or fried shrimp with just the right crunch are seriously addictive.

The Noodle Bar is priced just right, that is of course if you can stop with just eating one order of them buns! I know that I certainly couldn’t.

 

Here is some of what we ate:

 

Heirloom Tomato – watermelon, crab, avocado

 

Pork Bun – hoisin, scallion, cucumber

 

Shrimp Bun – spicy mayo, pickled shallot, iceberg

 

Momofuku Ramen – pork belly, pork shoulder, poached egg


 

Ginger Scallion Noodles – pickled shiitakes, cucumber, cabbage


 

Spicy Miso Ramen – smoked chicken, swiss chard, sesame


 

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Restaurant Information


* Restaurant Name
Momofuku Noodle Bar
* Overall
★★★☆ ☆
* Neighborhood / Cuisine
East Village / Asian Fusion
* Street Address
171 1st Ave., New York, NY 10003
* Phone
N/A
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Totto Ramen, Hell’s Kitchen , NYC

Totto Ramen, Hell’s Kitchen , NYC

 

 

Totto Ramen on Urbanspoon

 

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $

Must try: Paitan ramen, Totto extreme spicy ramen

 

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Taverna Kyclades, Astoria, NY

Taverna Kyclades, Astoria, NY


 
Taverna Kyclades on Urbanspoon
 
Food: ☆☆☆ 1/2

Service: ☆☆☆

Ambiance: ☆☆ ½

Cost: $$$

Dishes not to miss: Pan-Fried Greek Cheese, Grilled Porgie and Drurade, Galaktoboureko

 

If you are craving Greek food, then there is no better neighborhood to hit than Astoria in Queens.

Amongst the teeming numbers of Greek restaurants, Chef-Owner Ardian Skenderi’s Taverna Kyclades seems to be one of the more popular spots, offering the freshest seafood at very affordable prices. At peak times the waits can be very long but the food is very worth it. Read the rest of this entry

Ayada Thai, Woodside, NYC

Ayada Thai, Woodside, NYC

 

Ayada on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆

Ambiance: ☆☆☆

Cost: $$

Fit for: Spice hounds, cheap eats, foodies

Dishes not to miss: Northern Thai Sausage Appetizer, Fried Fish topped with Green Mango Sauce, Raw Shrimp Salad

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Lan Zhou: Hand Pulled Noodles, Flushing, NYC

Lan Zhou: Hand Pulled Noodles, Flushing, NYC

Food: ☆☆☆ ½

Service: ☆☆

Ambiance:  ½

Cost: $

Fit for: foodies, cheap eats, authentic ethnic eats

Dishes not to miss: Dumpling hand pulled noodles, hand pulled noodles with meat sauce

Special notes: You can buy bags of frozen dumplings ( 50 for $10)


Lan Zhou Hand-Pulled Noodle on Urbanspoon

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