Category Archives: Comfort Food

Mŏkbar, Chelsea, NYC

Mŏkbar, Chelsea, NYC

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Mŏkbar 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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Holiday Preview Breakfast with Eric Kayser ,UWS, NYC

Holiday Preview Breakfast with Eric Kayser ,UWS, NYC

 

I was invited to a media preview breakfast for the opening of the newest Maison Kayser on the Upper West Side, hosted by Eric Kayser himself!

 

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Dhruv’s Kati Shack Factory, Fresh Meadows, NYC

Dhruv’s Kati Shack Factory, Fresh Meadows, NYC

 

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Dhruv's Kati Shack Factory on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½ 

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $

Must try: Jhal Muri, Chicken Kati Roll, Keema Kati Roll

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Root & Bone, East Village, NYC

Root & Bone, East Village, NYC

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Root & Bone on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆☆

Ambiance: ☆☆☆☆

Cost: $$

Must try: Fried Chicken Biscuit Appetizer, Root Chips

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Pure Thai Cookhouse, Hell’s Kitchen, NYC

Pure Thai Cookhouse, Hell’s Kitchen, NYC

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Pure Thai Cookhouse on Urbanspoon

Food: ☆☆☆½

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆☆½

Cost: $$

Must try: Nakorn-Patom Duck Noodles Soup, Egg Omelette, Wok Chili Turmeric With Beef

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Spiegel, East Village, NYC

Spiegel, East Village, NYC

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Spiegel 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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Ivan Ramen, Lower East Side, NYC

Ivan Ramen, Lower East Side, NYC

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Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆☆

Ambiance:☆☆☆½

Cost: $$

Must try: Spicy Red Chili Ramen, Lancaster Okonomiyaki

 

Ivan Ramen on Urbanspoon

 

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Brunch at Hudson Clearwater, West Village, NYC

Brunch at Hudson Clearwater, West Village, NYC

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Hudson Clearwater on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance:☆☆☆

Cost: $$$

Must try: Crab Monsieur, Baby Spinach Salad

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Sage General Store, LIC, NYC

Sage General Store, LIC, NYC

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Sage General Store on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆ ¾

Service: ☆☆☆☆

Ambiance: ☆☆☆☆

Cost: $$

Must try: Brownies

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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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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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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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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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Juliette, Williamsburg, NYC

Juliette, Williamsburg, NYC

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Juliette on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆½

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆☆½

Cost: $$$

Must try: Eggs Forestière

Juliette is an ultra charming brassiere in Williamsburg located right next to the famed Egg.

Nested in an area where trendy restaurants open ever so often, Juliette has managed to hold its own. Offering a locally sourced, French inspired menu classic favorites with a twist rule here. The meal we had here was very solid.

The interiors at Juliette are French country whimsy. The space offers locales to suit every mood. There is a vintage barroom up front, a main dining room, a solarium adorned with vines and an extremely popular rooftop bar that is packed during warmer weather. 

For those who care, Juliette was recently featured on Project Runway in Episode 9 (Let’s do Brunch)! That is definitely one way you can spend your time here by checking out the scene but for others like me…..the food will occupy you just fine too.

Here is some of what we ate:

 

BAKED FARM EGGS

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SMOKED SALMON BENEDICT 


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EGGS FORESTIERE

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Restaurant Information


* Restaurant Name
Juliette
* Overall
★★★☆☆
* Neighborhood / Cuisine
Williamsburg / French
* Street Address
135 North 5th St., Brooklyn, NY 11211
* Phone
(718) 388-9222
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Mozzarella & Vino, Midtown West, NYC

Mozzarella & Vino, Midtown West, NYC

 

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Mozzarella & Vino on Urbanspoon

 

(I was invited as a guest to this establishment. All opinions expresses in this review are my own.)

I was recently invited to review Mozzarella & Vino, a brand new spot opened by veteran restaurateurs Gianfranco & Paula Sorrentino of Il Gattopardo and Leopard at des Artistes fame.

Located in the old Il Gattopardo space, right opposite the MOMA, Mozzarella & Vino is housed in a chic, inviting space that is filled with warmth and authenticity.

 

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Mozzarella & Vino distinguishes itself from it sibling restaurants by offering a seasonally inspired small plate menu with an emphasis on  Mozzarella di Bufala Campania DOP, Italian cheeses and affettati.

This affordable enoteca style restaurant also offers a full bar and an extensive wines list. This is one of the first spots in New York City to use an Enomatic wine serving system, which allows them to store unique high-end wines.

The kitchen is supervised by Chef Vito Gnazzo of Il Gattopardo and The Leopard and helmed by Antonio Savino. The menu at Mozzarella & Vino is quite simple but the flavors are truly authentic and the quality of food really shines. The best of ingredients are flown in twice a week from small artisanal farms in Italy. One can tell that in this kitchen there are no short cuts – everything is made fresh from scratch and is all really delicious.

Mozzarella & Vino is open everyday from 11:00 AM to 10 PM. The genuine affection and care taken of anyone who walks through the doors of Mozzarella & Vino is palpable. Its almost like you are welcomed home when you set foot in here and are pampered the whole way through with great food and wine.

Here is some of what we ate:

 

Bread Basket

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Zucchini and Calamari fritti with spicy tomato sauce

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Affettati & Fromagi

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Smoked Mozzarella with Cherry Tomato Suace

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Baked Rigatoni with Eggplant and Riccotta

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Meatballs

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Apple crostata with smoked mozzarella gelato

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Mascarpone chocolate mousse cake

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Restaurant Information


* Restaurant Name
Mozzarella & Vino
* Overall
★★★☆☆
* Neighborhood / Cuisine
Midtown West / Italian
* Street Address
33 West 54th Street (b/t Avenue Of The Americas & 5th Ave in Midtown West), New York, NY 10019
* Phone
(646) 692-8849
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Shopsin’s General Store, Lower East Side, NYC

Shopsin’s General Store, Lower East Side, NYC

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Shopsin's General Store on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆ ½

Ambiance: ☆☆

Cost: $$

Must try: Poutine, Mac and Cheese Pancake

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The Little Owl, West Village, NYC

The Little Owl, West Village, NYC

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The Little Owl on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆

Service: ☆☆☆½

Ambiance: ☆☆☆½

Cost: $$$

Must try: Gravy Meatball Sliders , Spring Asparagus Soup, Pork Chop & Butter Beans

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Shake Shack, Westbury, Long Island

Shake Shack, Westbury, Long Island

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Shake Shack on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆½

Service: ☆☆☆½ 

Ambiance: ☆☆☆

Cost: $$

Must try: Burgers, Cheese fries, concretes

 

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Bún-ker, Maspeth, NYC

Bún-ker, Maspeth, NYC

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Bún-ker on Urbanspoon

 

Food: ☆☆☆☆ ½ 

Service: ☆☆☆☆

Ambiance: ☆☆☆½ 

Cost: $$

Must try: Crab Spring Rolls, Ca Ri Ga, Cha Ca La Vong, Bahn Xeo (actually get one of everything on the menu!) 

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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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