Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Ofrendas Natural Selection


Another good thing from Ofrenda. I already talked about their dinner but forgot to mention their delicious drinks. They of course have margaritas but I suggest trying this tasty drink. It's called Natural Selection. It's a mix of tequila, guava, orange emulsion, avacado and apple bitters. Sounds like a strange combination but it all mixes into my favorite drink at Ofrenda. There's a convenient quick service bar with all kinds of tequila bottles on the shelves. Stop by and have one, or two, or three, with dinner or not.


Ofrenda
113 7th Avenue South
New York, NY
(212) 924-2305
ofrendanyc.com/cocktailsmenu

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

La Villette

What an amazing place! Even though 10 Downing suffered an untimely demise, I was really exited to see La Villette opening in the same space.  Soft open as of last week, and it's on my short list for best new village spot of the year. 

First off, everyone is unusually warm and welcoming.  The owner is personally greeting every guest and the chef stopped by our table to say hi with a complementary tasting of Foie Gras Terrine. How awesome is that?!  Get there ASAP while it's still undiscovered! 

I can't say enough good things about La Villette. A truly wonderful  experience. I can't wait to go back.




FOIE GRAS TERRINE was magnificent, smooth and flavorful.  The onion on the side was a bittersweet balsamic-tasting addition that added an unexpected contrasting flavor. Beautiful!



Such a delicate and I would say elegant dish. LOBSTER AND SCALLOP TARTARE was so fresh and intricate that it was an absolute joy to eat. It almost melts in your mouth.  



If you're feeling adventurous and expect to be rewarded for it then the DUCK AND RABBIT RILLETTE is an absolute must. Spread the rillette on fresh baguette and add a drop of mustard and you have fantastically balanced creation. The jar was completely empty when we were done.



Yummy LA TARTE A LA TOMATE! Thin layered puff pastry is covered with tomatoes melted emanthal cheese. It's flawless. 



Instant respect for a place that serves Ottomanelli meat. VEAL FILET MIGNON was the sensational choice of the evening. Tender meat was perfectly done, soft and juicy. Winning with this one!


 
There was no official dessert menu, just a couple of specials. 
We were instantly sold on the CHOCOLATE MOUSE. Great choice! Fluffy and smooth, 
not too sweet and richly chocolate. Can't wait to see what else they do with their desserts! 

No cocktail list yet either but they  did have one creation 
with muddles STRAWBERRIES, hint of balsamic flavor and topped with a basil leaf. 
Can't really go wrong with a fresh strawberry drink.  
(And some interesting wine selections, though we went with a nice champagne.)

I swear, not compensation was given for an outstanding review. 
I was truly impressed and exited about this great new addition to the West Village 



La Villette
10 Downing Street
New York, NY

Friday, October 5, 2012

Dinner at Spice Market


This is a spectacular place with unusual Southeast Asian dishes
that's definitely worth a stop. Very trendy spot due to it's
"happening" Meatpacking District location and extravagant
decorations. Hands down, one of my favorite places for
creative and extraordinary dishes in the city. 


Wonderfully crunchy and crispy Lentil CHIPS and spicy chipotle SALSA are very unique and delicious. Control yourself though, this is just the start of the meal.


PEEKYTOE CRAB DUMPLINGS are incredibly light. Their fresh crab meat, delicate wrapping and fresh and crisp sugar snap peas are a perfect combination. A wonderful appetizer.











CHAR GRILLED CHICKEN sounds so ordinary but this dish is definitely far from it. This is one of my absolute favorites at Spice Market. There is some sort of citrus sauce that makes this chicken unbelievable. It's so easy to overcook such dishes but this chicken is always perfectly prepared, nice and juicy. Absolutely amazing!







Second favorite thing on the menu is PORK VINDALOO. Unbelievable meat is mixed with greens in a spicy sauce that is incredibly flavorful. It's worth coming here just for this dish. I can't say enough good things about this. You'll understand what I mean when you try it. Love this one!








Brace yourself, the chocolate bar with ice cream, milk chocolate sauce and caramelized banana is called OVALTINE KULFI. That's right, ovaltine, as in "More Ovaltin Please!" Everything about this dessert is spectacular. Rich chocolate bar goes perfectly with a delicious banana and ice cream. No matter how full,I always clean this plate.








Spice Market 
403 West 13th Street
New York, NY
(212) 675-2322
spicemarketnewyork.com

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Red Velvet Done Right


 

Bull and Bear is one of many well known steak houses in New York. I can't say that it's my favorite stake though. I'm an unwavering fan of Strip House for the best meat in town. What I did really love about Bull and Bear is their Red Velvet cake. The cream cheese icing was delicious, not sugary at all, just perfectly creamy and light. Come here for the dessert and really strong drinks, they are very generous with their liquor.  





Bull and Bear

301 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10022
(212) 872-1275
bullandbearsteakhouse.com

Monday, September 24, 2012

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Mad Meatballs



Can't say enough good things about the Meatball Shop. That's pretty much all they make and they do it extremely well. I love this place. You get a plastic menu and a black marker, check off meatball, sauce, and side combination and in a few minutes you get a bowl of deliciousness. Can't go wrong with classic meatballs in a spicy meat sauce and cheese and a side of spinach. Wonderful! Better off to go on odd times and days though because during prime-time you may have to wait up to an hour for a table. It's open till 2am on weekdays and 4am on weekends (I count Friday as a weekend) so showing up early or late is a win.

64 Greenwich
(212) 982-7815

84 Stanton
(212) 982-8895

170 Bedford
(718) 551-0520

themeatballshop.com

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Meatopia

Every year, this is the 9th, a man named Josh Ozersky organizes Meatopia in Randall's Island Park. Meatopia is an event where renouned restaurants and organizations in New York get together, set up individual tents and make a meat dish that represents them. This year it way over 35 different tents! That's a lot of meats to try. Obviously I set out with a goal to try everything.







 
Our first stop was Santiago Garat tent with Whole Uruguayan-Syle Lamb with Chimichurri Sauce. A great start to Meatopia. Delicious lamb, very well done.



 
   
This was a Whole Foods tent with three different bratwursts on the grill and over 200 toppers inside the actual tent. Holly molly. That's a lot. They had everything from marinara sauce and chilli to sardines and dried seaweed. We didn't try all of them but it was very interesting to see all of these things in one place.



 
Siggi Hall's Icelandic lamb. Very nicely done. They were very generous with their portions. Have to confess we didn't finish this because there's still many places to try.



 
Dinosaur BBQ. Many people believe it's the best BBQ in New York and rightly so. The ribs were amazing. Very soft, the meat falls off the bone. The sauce was not overwhelming but still added just enough flavor to make the ribs delicious. Probably the best ribs at Meatopia.



 
Our first stop was going to be April Bloomfield's tent but when we got there it was still nor ready. Bloomfield is responsible for the Spotted Pig amazing blue cheese burger so obviously we were very exited to try her cooking here. So, stopped by later and were really happy with what she made. The BBQ pork sandwich was very good but not comparable to her burger. Exited to go back to the Spotted Pig very soon.



 
Paella was surprisingly tasty. The rice was very flavorful and the pork was nice and soft. Everything went really well together to make for a great paella.



 
Beef short rib was tender and juicy. Wonderful peace of meat beautifully and yet simply prepared. Good job Adam Perry Lang. 



 
I'm somewhat indifferent to veal but I had to try this of course. It was somewhat bland but the arugula, peach and mustard vinaigrette was wonderful. I think I liked that more than the meat itself.



 
Yummy meatballs in excellent sauce. It might look heavy and creamy but it was actually nice and light, just added an extra layer of flavor to already tasty meatballs. This was unique and great to try.



 
There was a separate section for chicken and duck dishes. I liked this one most of all. Nice peace with great sides. Very tasty.



 
Beef stue was amazing. The meat instantly falls apart and the mushroom were absolutely delicious. I really loved this but could barely try it because this was the last dish we tried.


Oh my. I was so incredibly full by the end but mission was accomplished. I stopped by every tent and tried every dish. Success! Looking forward to next years Meatopia.

A storm was setting in fast on our way back from the island. Pretty intense. Fortunately we made it home in time.