Sunday, November 17, 2013

The NoMad

Finally! Going to The NoMad for dinner. So exited to try the acclaimed food and well-known cocktails. This place is always crowded, the bar, library and dining room are bustling with people looking to experience the trendy scene.








Absolutely loved this Tagliatelle pasta. Al dente preparation with delicious sweet crab meat, lemon and black pepper. Seems like a simple recipe for wonderful pasta dish. Pepper and lemon were perfect finishing touch. Yummy! Order and enjoy.


Creamy Foie Gras was great but a bit too much for an appetizer portion. Buckwheat was a great contrasting flavor and texture. Very smooth and fresh dish.


Highly recommended (although not as highly as the whole roasted chicken) and pleasant. Soft and juicy with confit pears and soft, amazing cabbage. Delicate flavors all around.



Ah, the lobster. How can you go wrong with perfect lobster meat. Brown butter bisque, salsify and apple gave the scrumptious lobster just the right complimentary flavors as to not overwhelm it. This is a must try.

The Nomad
1170 Broadway
New York, NY
(347) 472-5660
thenomadhotel.com/#/dining  

Monday, November 4, 2013

Wallflower Bar


So exited for Wallflower. Daniel’s former head bartender genious Xavier Herit has created a wonderful restaurant with amazing drinks and delicious food. It’s very small, only 45 seats, and will inevitably become very popular very soon.




First thing to try is obviously cocktails.

 
First, and favorite, is Shush. Pineapple & chipotle infused vodka, lime, strawberry and bitters. Light and full of flavor, absolutely perfect cocktail.


  
Next, is a concoction of spicy jalapeño-infused mezcal, my absolute favorite. Spicy and light, amazingly flavorful. Perfect.


 
Tete de Mule is mint based and pleasantly unusual in flavor, in a good way. I really liked how it was served as well.


Now for the food. Black sea bass crudo with mutsu apple and seaweed was highly recommended. It was unexpectedly on a milder side.


Next, the oh so wonderful beef tartar. Can't say enough good things about it. Full of flavor, soft and yet textured. Not overwhelming, just pure deliciousness. I liked the containing crispy bread/cracker as well. Very nicely done. 


The sea scallops with savory cabbage, white wine, and smoked caviar were amazing. It's a must order. Perfectly prepared. Cabbage was a dilectable accompaniment, both in texture and flavor. Highly recommend!


Second main was beef shortrib. Not as soft as I was expecting but ever so yummy. Sauce was amazign as well. Yet another must try.


Last but not lease, the dessert. What's better than chocolate musse. Really nice, chocolatty and not too sweet. Perfect temperature and great buttery consistency. One of my favorites. 

I just can't say enough good things about Wallflower! I was hoping for a celicious experience and it's exactly what I got. So exited to go back. Want to try more food and many more creative and inventive cocktails. A great addition to the lovely West Village.

Wallflower
235 W 122th St.,
New York, NY

Monday, October 14, 2013

San Francisco

Beautiful San Francisco. Amazing city with great people and of course great food. It's quickly becoming a destination for inventive culinary creations as well as traditional cooking.

 
Pier 1, Ferry Building Marketplace. Houses several unique restaurants, cafes, and coffee shops. Definitely a must-see. Locals and tourists alike find themselves stopping by to grab a coffee before work, lunch and dinner with friends after.


Fishermans Wharf. Absolutely a tourist spot. No locals here, at lease I didn't notice any. Just visitors looking for a clam chowder and crab cakes. Good to stop by but I doubt it's the best place for local seafood.


Russian Hill takes some work to climb. When you get to the top you will be rewarded with an unbelievable view of the city.



Bakery on the The Embarcadero with sourdough creations. Yes, these are turtles and an alligator made out of bread.


Henry's Hunan Restaurant

Local Hunan restaurants have been dominant in the city for many years. This food is great, has to be experienced. This particular one was recommended by a local so it's our stop. 

Dumplings were yummy. Nothing inventive here, just very well prepared traditional dumplings that were oh so good. I love dumplings and these ones hit the spot.


Apparently Diana's Special Meat Pie is the thing to get here. No other like it anywhere. There's soft crust holding in a combination of beef and chopped lettuce. Very filling for sure, don't think it's possible for one person to finish this so it's definitely a shareable item. It was good, not necessarily life changing but worth a try.


Basic Sweet and Sour Chicken, not much else to it. Good combination of sweet and sour and very flavorful.


Henry's Special, not really sure what's in, it seems like everything. There's sausage, chicken, peppers, and I think shrimp as well. Special indeed. Not really sure what's so unique about it but I still found it a wonderful dish. Oh so filling as well, way too much food here. 




 
Modern space with very interesting local people watching. The crowd was surprisingly older than expected, not as many young and stylish people as I was hoping for, but then again dinner was on the earlier side so maybe it was too early.


 
The cocktails were decidedly a win. Bee's Knees was refreshing and light with a nice hint of honey. Piña Colada, which I was surprised to see on the menu it being a modern Vietnamese cuisine, was my favorite of the two. Not too sweet and just enough coconut made it the cocktail of the night. Surprisingly the garnish cherries were extremely delicious as well.


Grilled Mediterranean Octopus, cucumber, carrot, cherry tomato, petite herbs, lemongrass-thai chile fish sauce. Lots going on here, however, it didn't feel overwhelming. Cucumbers and cherries gave the soft octopus a great contrasting flavor and a bit or crunch. Very nice dish. 


Probably the favorite of the night were Teamed Banana Leaf Apioca Dumplings with shiitake mushrooms, pork and dried shrimp. So full of flavor and absolutely delicious. Combination of ingredients was just perfect. Actually was considering getting another order of these but alas, there was plenty more food to try. 


Stir Fried Wild Gulf Shrimp with bell farm shishito pepper, chili, and ginger were a bit overwhelming with all the different flavors, not in a bad way, just different. 


Wood Oven Roasted Niman Ranch Short Ribs in madras curry with thumbelina carrots, summer squash, and eggplant was not as soft as I was hoping for but still good. Didn't fall of the bone and yet was nicely delicate.


What's a trip to California without a visit to Napa Valley.



Ma(i)sonry "a winery collective and contemporary art gallery, featuring private boutique wine tastings in a beautiful wine country setting." One of my favorite stops in Napa located in a small city of Yountville, which is also the home of French Laundry. What a wonderful place this is for a glass of wine, or two, or three. Perfect place to enjoy good weather of the region.

I loved everything about San Francisco and Napa Valley with it's great food and wine. One of my favorite destinations. 


Henry's Hunan Restaurant 
110 Natoma Street 
San Francisco, CA 94105 
(415) 546-4999 
henryshunan.com 

The Slanted Door 
1 Ferry Building Marketplace #3 
San Francisco, CA 94111 
(415) 861-8032
slanteddoor.com

Ma(i)sonry 
6711 Washington Street 
Yountville, CA 94599 
(707) 944-0889 
maisonry.com 

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Dill Restaurant in Reykjavík, Iceland


Different menu every day. Order all 7, everything is very unique, haven't tried anything like this before. Small kitchen and only about 12 tables, if I remember correctly. A great way to experience inventive Icelandic food. Definitely recommend this splurge in Reykjavík.


Rye bread, sour cream and chives which were picked in the garden outside the restaurant. Geothermic dried bread. Never had anything prepared this way. Not sure if this process added anything special to it but it was light and crispy with full flavor of rye, taste was not lost. Nice snack.


Crispy scallop was probably geothermically dried as well. A bit strange but nice. Pancetta also dried and crispy. Leaf bread with cheese was really nice and creamy. Presentation was unique, try not to eat the lint.


Baked rutabaga (turnip), cheese foam, herbs and sprinkled crispy millet. Great delicate dish, very yummy. Rutabaga was soft but not to the point of being mushy, was just right. Really liked the crispy millet, it added an unexpected crunch to other soft textures.


Parsnip with roe, onions, rye bread and parsley, and an occasional small purple flower. Rye bread crumbles went great with parsnip, they added a bit of bitterness. Lovely presentation, wonderful dish.


 
Salcify (a root vegetable) and blue mussels hidden in potatoes mousse. Salcify and mousse were great but I would eliminate the mussels. Don't think they added anything extraordinary to the dish. I get where they were coming from, trying to make this interesting but I feel simplicity is better in this case. Egg was a neat touch.


Fried cod with pickled white cabbage, which looks like very cool pasta. Amazing fish, just perfect. Cabbage was crispy and flavorful, went great with soft texture of the cod. One of my favorite dishes of the evening.


Lambs shoulder with carrots. Loved the lamb, definitely not enough of it though. Smaller is better in theory but for such great tasting meat it should not apply. 


Skyr (Icelandic dairy product similar to yogurt) and rhubarb. It seems like rhubarb is everywhere now, it's definitely a neat way to flavor up a dish. This was great, it added a bitter/sour taste to what would otherwise have been a bland skyr. Nice and refreshing. 


No chocolate here but no worries, strawberries and shortcake address the need for sweet at the end of the meal. Yummy strawberries and fluffy cake, delicious.
 
Dill Restaurant
Sturlugata 5  101 Reykjavik, Iceland
+354 552 1522
dillrestaurant.is/EN/index_en.html 

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Dinner at Aquagrill

Appetizers and dessert at Aquagrill outdoor terrace. Actually, it's one of my favorite restaurants for classic and fresh seafood dishes. There are also great refreshing summer time cocktails, not to miss.

Lobster Salad was pretty amazing, pure to the ingredients. Very generous with their lobster, made me really happy. Great lobster is served on a bed of greens with light citruce dressing and sides of avocado and grapefruit. Delicious and light. Such a treat.


Love Aquagrill Tuna Tartar. Just like the lobster salad, this dish is light and flavorful at the same time. I love that you can taste and appreciate the simplicity of fresh tuna. Nothing fancy needed, just some crispy cucumber slices and horseradish on top. Just perfect.


To confess, big reasons why I love Aquagrill is the dessert. It's never disappointing, especially the Chocolate Tasting. Obviously there is a warm chocolate cake with melted chocolate on the inside. Chocolate ice cream is always a win. Save room for this treat.


Also yummy is Blueberry Pie. Lots of solid blueberries, no berry jam filling here. Crumbles on top soaked up vanilla ice cream as it melted on top of the hot pie. Delightful.

Aquagrill
210 Spring St
New York, NY
(212) 274-0505
aquagrill.com