Things I Love..
Top 10 (Things I Love) :: October 2011
1. Smorgas Chef, West Village
Nestled on a corner in the West Village, Smorgas Chef is a cozy, authentic Swedish restaurant that I discovered last month when a friend was in town. I have heard good reviews but haven’t had the chance to try it yet, and am I glad I did! Their food style is labeled “New Nordic Cuisine”, and everything on the menu is locally sourced and organic. The interior is small but has a large bar, and has a warm, ambient lighting that is cozy and romantic. They also have outside seating on their front patio as well as wrapped around the side of the building which is really nice on a crisp Fall night. We started our evening with Lingonberry Margaritas (quite potent I must add!) while we waited for our seats. We nibbled on some delicious Gravlaks Croquettes, which has generous pieces of luscious smoked salmon atop crispy potato cakes with chives and horseradish creme fraiche.
For our main dish we had to try their infamous Swedish Meatballs – WoW. Party in your mouth! The dish is almost enough for 2 people – you get about 10-12 decent sized meatballs slathered in a creamy light brown gravy, with whipped garlic mashed potatoes and sauteed julienne vegetables. The key to this dish is not only try them with the tangy and tart Lingonberry Preserves, but also ask for a side of Cloudberry Preserves (another delicious golden berry used in Swedish cooking that tastes like raspberry, strawberry and mango). For dessert, we ordered strong espressos and a pot of one of their many signature Swedish herbal teas. If we had more room, we might have tried the Scandanavian Soft Vanilla Waffles with Cloudberry preserves and Chantilly cream or the Honey Milk Chocolate Mousse but we were just so damn full from the Meatballs that we almost took a nap right there on the table. Love this place, will definitely be back for more Swedish yummy yums! They also have locations in the Financial District and in the Scandanavian House on Park Avenue.
Smorgas Chef, West Village
283 W. 12th St | New York NY 10014 | 212.243.7073
Check out Smorgas Chef online
2. Pane Panelle @ Stuzziceria, Tribeca
Pane Panelle is the new sandwich shop attached to Stuzziceria in TriBeCa that was just voted #2 Best Sandwich in NYC by New York Magazine in August ’11. I had to try this place out for myself after all the good reviews and my office being across the street from both places! I tried the Meatball and Mozzarella Panini which was perfect in its crispy grilled exterior with savory meatballs and sauce with tons of gooey cheese on the interior. They also sell meatballs and sauce by the pint if you want to just take them home and throw them over some fresh cooked pasta.
The sandwich shop and restaurant is run by Chef Paul di Bari, with a variety of other Sicilian-style sandwiches including a muffuletta with salami, provolone and an olive salad and their namesake sandwich with chickpea fritters, caciocavallo and ricotta cheese on Grandaisy bread. The price is a little steep at around $8-9 per sandwich, but they are so good you just can’t pass them up!
Pane Panelle TriBeCa
305½ Church St. between Lispenard St. and Walker St. | 212.219.2357
Check out Pane Panelle online
3. Mexicue Food Truck
I remember not too long ago complaining about how there are very few affordable lunch options in the TriBeCa area, most restaurants being a bit more on the shi-shi side and a bit more than I’d like to spend on a daily basis when I’m just looking for some quick, good grub for lunch. Alas, the Mexicue Food Truck appeared on Church Street and I got really excited! The brand name says it all – their delicious sliders and tacos are a perfect mixture of BBQ and Mexican flavors all rolled into some really tasty morsels. I sampled the Smoked Short Rib Slider – full of super tender smoked short ribs slathered in a Memphis Mole sauce, topped with pickled onions, romaine lettuce and cojita cheese. The Burnt Ends Slider is almost like a super fancy Sloppy Joe, but mini-sized and fantabulous flavors – the chili is made of pulled brisket mixed with ground beef, then topped with a cilantro lime crema and house pickled jalapenos. These guys definitely know what they’re doing when it comes to flavorful fast food. I haven’t stopped dreaming of the next time I can get my hands on some these notable noshes! Besides their mobile food trucks, you can also find these guys in Midtown West on 7th Avenue and on Forsyth St on the Lower East Side.
Check out Mexicue’s menu and locations online
4. Wafles & Dinges Food Truck
Now here’s something worthy of talking about. I’m not one to have much of a sweet tooth, but last month I was swayed by a friend (as well as the friendly food truck guy) at Wafles & Dinges to sample some of these luscious golden crisp Belgian Waffles slathered in Spekuloos spread, bananas and powdered sugar. I have always loved Belgian Waffles – but Spekuloos spread? What the hell is that? I had to try it. All I can say is its a cross between a butterscotch and hazelnut flavor and has the consistency of a creamy syrup (almost like a melty Nutella) and is completely divine. Nothing like I’ve ever tasted. That’s it. I’m officially hooked.
They have a ton of toppings (dinges) which you can get UNLIMITED for $2 extra. They refer to this as WMD, or Wafel of Massive Deliciousness. Dulce de Leche, Belgian Chocolate Fudge, Maple Syrup, Whipped Cream, Ice Cream, the list goes on. You can even get some savory Wafels like BBQ Pulled Pork (next on my list) or de Bacon Syrup Wafel which sounds pretty darn cool too. Chow it all down with a hot Belgian Cocoa or Coffee with a shot of hazelnut – you’ve got the perfect sweet snack in the middle of Central Park (or wherever you might discover them on the streets of NYC!) Awesome. Just sayin’.
Check out Wafels & Dinges online
5. KitchenAid 3-Speed Hand Blender
So I found a new toy to play with. A serious cooking toy, that is. I had the opportunity to attend a product demo with KitchenAid at SeeFood media kitchens on the Lower East Side – one of New York’s premiere food photography and video studios. Not only did we get to preview first hand some of KitchenAid’s new products, but we were served delicious nibbles from local food purveyors such as Katz Deli, Doughnut Plant, Russ & Daughters, Yonah Shimmel Knish Bakery, Boubouki and Bisous Ciao. We sampled Pastrami Sandwiches, homemade doughnuts, smoked salmon, knishes, spanakopita and yummy macarons…too much good food to even talk about!
KitchenAid has a great new line of stand mixers, food processors and a 3-speed hand blender that does all the chopping, crushing, whisking and pureeing you’ll ever need in one handy little tool! This probably has become my favorite all-purpose tool with its handsome design, lightweight body and smart precise mechanics that is totally portable and actually fits perfect in my small NYC kitchen! It’s perfect for chopping herbs and veggies, mixing soups and pureeing food right in the pan. It’s super quiet and has a soft grip handle making it comfortable and easy to use. Love it!
Thanks to everyone at KitchenAid and SeeFood Media for a great event and even greater gift to make my cooking faster, easier and more delicious!
Check out KitchenAid products online
Check out SeeFood Media online
6. Antique Garage, Soho
Now if there’s a cool place in Soho, this is it. This eclectic, funky and elegant little place is a gem located in lower Soho on Mercer Street. They specialize in Mediterranean cuisine and have antique furnishings, live music and gorgeous chandeliers to match. Their menu is an infusion of French, Moroccan, Turkish and Ottoman cuisine and they have great small plates (Mezes) such as Hummus and Tzatziki, marinated octopus, fried calamari and eggplant salad if you just want to snack with a glass of wine. I stopped in solely for drinks and had an interesting mint, rum and cucumber concoction that knocked my socks off! Their Grilled Turkish Meatballs are a specialty, and they have other Mediterranean yummies such as Shrimp Casserole and Grilled Veggie Skewers and Pan Seared Tuna. The atmosphere is warm and dimly lit, the music is authentic Turkish (and live!), and the whole gorgeous setting is inside an old garage – they keep the front garage door open so you get a nice breeze and a nice view. Very lovely. Very romantic. A nice place for a dinner date and some great food. I’ll definitely be back for some of those Grilled Turkish Meatballs and fresh made Tzatziki!
Check out Antique Garage online
7. da Mikele, Tribeca
I stopped in here the other day for a quick lunch at the bar and for the life of me couldn’t decide what to order. Not that that’s a bad thing – just too many damn good choices on the menu! da Mikele is owned by Michele Iuliano, owner of Luzzo’s in the East Village, and Ovest Pizzoteca in Chelsea. Their menu is Neopolitan-inspired and the best thing to try is one of their oven fired pizzas. Old Fashioned Square pizza, Cone Shaped Pizza, Oven baked Neapolitan pizza, homemade Focaccia bread pizza..you name it, they got it. And they got it good. I had one of their “pizzettes” which is a thin crust oblong shaped pizza that was topped with Spicy Sausage, Broccoli Rabe and Mozzarella – just enough for lunch and it came with a mixed greens salad. The crust is perfectly cooked, crunchy on the outside and chewy with lots of gooey melted cheese – delicious! They have a nice selection of Antipasti – the Polpette (meatballs in tomato sauce) are really good with a side of crusty bread and their Italian soups are delicious too. I haven’t tried the Pasta dishes yet, but they look amazing (yes, I was eyeing the Pesto Shrimp Risotto on the plate next to me) and are on the list for my next visit (which will be very soon!). Check it out.
275 Church Street, New York NY 10013 | 212.925.8800
Check out da Mikele online
8. Kelley + Ping, Soho
I stumbled across this cool Asian noodle shop one night when I was strolling through Soho after work and felt like having an appetizer and a drink, and that I did. I sat down at their cozy bar in the front and ordered a Ginger infused Vodka drink that was cool and fresh and spicy, topped with some fresh mint. While I was looking at the menu, the bartender put out these amazingly addictive asian spiced nuts in front of me – in a cute bamboo basket with a cover! I think there were cashews, wasabi peas and some crunchy coated spicy peanuts in there – not sure but I think I ate at least two baskets of these before I actually ordered something off the menu. So I ordered some of the Thai Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce which came with another clear sweet and spicy dressing with peppers in it. Pretty darn good! I’ve only actually eaten here one other time and had the traditional Pad Thai but they have tons of other interesting noodle dishes and Asian dishes including Vietnamese style on the menu that I’d try next time around. Nice atmosphere, good service, and oh, did I mention the asian spiced nuts? It’s worth a visit just for those lovely things and a house infused vodka.
127 Greene St. Soho NY 10012 | 212.228.1212
Check out Kelley + Ping online
9. The Lot, High Line Park NYC
Situated at the base of the entrance of High Line Park at W. 30th St and 10th Ave, The Lot is really just that – a (parking) lot with free events, an outdoor bar, picnic tables and umbrellas all inside a circle of cool food trucks. But these aren’t just any food trucks, we’re talking awesome coffee and ice cream bar Van Leeuwen, Korilla BBQ, The Taco Truck, and an outdoor bar by Colicchio & Sons with craft beers on tap. After some good grub and a beverage, you can hike up the stairs to the gorgeous High Line park situated on an old railroad line that spans from W. 30th Street all the way down to Greenwich Street in the Meatpacking District. If you haven’t checked out this beauty, you must, must do so. Being up so high is a breath of fresh air from being in this crowded city and the views are absolutely amazing to boot. Gardens, sculptures, art, and really cool buildings along the way. When you’re done, stop at The Porch on W. 15th Street for a great sammie and fresh fruit from The Green Table located in Chelsea Market. Oh, and make sure to get an artisan fruit ice pop or shaved ice from People’s Pops on the way out for dessert!
Check out the Lot and the High Line online
10. Papatzul, Soho
OK. Last but not least. Papatzul. Set in lower Soho on Grand Street, this is one of my new favorite spots. Good Mexican food is sometimes hard to find in New York (at least compared to L.A. or Texas) or you have to go to an overpriced chain for some decent guacamole and enchiladas AND pay an arm and a leg for it. Papatzul is first of all charming with its creative and colorful signage outside. The interior is just as colorful and buzzing with energy when you walk in.
The chips are deliciously homemade and the salsa is super fresh (and no they aren’t free with your meal, but worth the $5 for some of the best authentic salsa you’ll have in NYC). Since I went for lunch, I ordered the Braised Chipotle and Oregano Beef soft Taquitos, topped with Queso Fresco, Chipotle Salsa and Crema – d.e.l.i.c.i.o.u.s. – and a perfect size for lunch (didn’t even need the chips but they were worth it!)
Papatzul is actually a term used for special food that the Aztecs made for their Spanish conquerors (who they thought were the Gods). Special food you’ll find here indeed, with a menu created by Chef Thierry Amezcua, a native of Coyoacan, a small borough of Mexico City. The atmosphere is fun and lively and the food is fresh, authentic and very special.
55 Grand Street, New York, NY 10013 | 212.274.8225
Check out Papatzul online
Top 10 (Things I Love) :: August 2011
1. MacBar, Soho – Four Cheese Mac ‘n Cheese
MacBar is a groovy and modern mac ‘n cheese take-out bar smack in the middle of Soho on Prince Street near Lafayette. They offer 12 different varieties of gourmet mac ‘n cheese combinations such as: Four Cheese with queso blanco, fontina, emmental and gouda, Mayan Chipotle with chicken Diablo, Chihuahua cheese and green onions, Mac Lobsta’, Mac ‘Shroom, Mac Quack with duck confit, fontina, caramelized onions and fines herbes and more. Who can resist a creamy, savory bowl of piping hot ooey-gooey macaroni and cheese? I know I can’t!
54 Prince Street | NYC 10012 | (212) 226-8877 |
2. La Follia, Gramercy – Beet Salad with Mint, Ricotta and Pistachios & Sauteed Garlic Spinach
La Follia is an upscale Italian restaurant and wine bar in Gramercy on 3rd and 19th Street. They offer delicious small plates, pasta dishes and entrees, salads, veggie sides and have an impressive wine list. My favorite small plate dish is the Roasted Beet Salad with Mint, Ricotta and Pistachios..it has a light vinaigrette dressing and is perfectly mixed with fresh mint and creamy ricotta and roasted pistachios to give it some crunch. They also have an excellent line up of Crostinis including Burrata, Olive Oil and Sea Salt, Imported Ricotta with Pesto, White Bean and Olive and more – perfectly crispy with the finest toppings – YUM. If you’re in the mood for some Salumi, try the Prosciutto Di Parma or Soppressata with a selection of cheeses, a side dish of Broccoli Rabe with garlic and chili flakes or Brussel Sprouts sautéed with crispy Prosciutto or the sauteed garlicky Spinach. Rumour has it their House-Made Pappardelle with Braised Pork Ragu, Thyme and Pecorino is amazing! An intimate bar setting and outside seating make this a perfect date spot on a Friday night.
226 3rd Avenue at 19th St | NYC 10003 | (212) 477-4100 |
3. Waterfront Ale House, Murray Hill – Spicy Texas Chili with Serious Hot Homemade Hot Sauce
This is one of my favorite neighborhood saloons in Murray Hill. The food is fantastic, the locals are loyal and the service and staff are great. They make their own homemade Hot Sauce (which sells for $4 a bottle at the bar) – amazing with their Spicy Texas Chili! Perfectly seasoned and cooked to perfection with a bubbly layer of cheddar cheese and topped with green onions, the chunks of steak and beans make this chili a comforting dish with a cold brew on a Happy Hour kinda night. They have an impressive line up of more than 80 domestic, locally crafted and imported beers, as well as effervescent gins and “real” absinthes when you’re in the mood for a good shot of something stout on a Friday night. Don’t miss out on their BBQ either – their hot-off-the-grill Pulled Chicken and Pulled Pig sandwiches, Texas Dip Smoked Beef Brisket and hand cut Sweet Potato Fries rock!
540 2nd Avenue (Corner of 30th St.), NYC
| (212) 696-4104 |
4. Prime and Beyond, E. Vlg – Wet Aged Ribeye with Scallion Salad, Fresh Cut Fries
Prime and Beyond is a newly opened Steak place in the East Village NYC. They hand select all of their meats and dry or wet age them in a humidity controlled refrigeration on premises for up to 8 weeks, giving their meat extraordinary flavor and juiciness! They also have amazing burgers, salads, and hand-cut French fries, along with a selection of side dishes including grilled veggies, potato salad, and Wagyu Salami. In the mood for a Korean twist to your meal? Try to the Bulgogi Rice Bowl or the Short Rib Stew with a side of Kimchi and Spicy Scallion salad. Amazing flavor and a nice intimate yet casual atmosphere.
90 E. 10th St, NYC | (212) 505-0033 |
5. Ocean Grill, UWS – Shrimp Cocktail, Fresh Crab, Avocado, Mango and Jalapeno Roll and Lobster Cocktail
I have found no other spot in NYC that has fresher seafood, as well as a comfortable and relaxing environment for an outdoor cocktail and delicious sushi and seafood. Their shrimp and lobster cocktail dishes come served on a bed of ice, fresh lemon, drawn butter and cocktail sauce – not to mention humoungous pieces of shrimp and lobster that is chilly and delicious on a hot summer day! Their sushi is also amazing – I fell in love with their version of the “California Roll” which is actually huge pieces of fresh lump crabmeat, avocado, mango and jalapeno. Great location situated across from the Museum of Natural History, so ideal for a Sunday brunch and walk in Central Park!
384 Columbus Ave (at 78th St), NYC | (212) 579-2300 |
6. Oficina Latina NYC, Nolita – Orange Ginger Margaritas & Ham and Cheese Arepas
The concept of this hip restaurant and bar in Soho reflects the Pan American Highway along Central Mexico and South America with its Latin Tapas menu and exotic cocktails. The interior looks like a mechanic’s garage with a small lounge area, outdoor dining area and interior dining room. Their exotic tropical drinks are all handmade, with flavors such as Orange-Ginger Margaritas, Cilantro Avocado Margaritas, Blackberry Caiphirinas and Mojitos, made with muddled fruits and spicy and sweet rims. My favorite Tapas dish is their Albondigas (Spicy Meatballs in Tomato Sauce) and their Arepas which are corn pockets filled with ham and melted cheese. They have a huge menu filled with other Latin dishes such as Ceviche, Tostones, Cuban Tortas, Croquetas filled with pan-seared crab cakes and chipotle sauce as well as slow-cooked black beans, roasted pork leg and rice and deep fried green plantains. Definitely a spot you don’t want to miss!
24 Prince Street (near Mott St), NYC | (646) 381-2555
7. Sanctuary T, Soho – Smoky Black T-Dust Seasoning & Sangria
Not only is this a cool hip restaurant in Soho, but they sell fantastic tea-infused seasonings made out of organic teas and spices. My favorite is the Smoky Black T-dust seasoning, made of smoked tea, black peppercorns and sea salt. Their other seasonings are Tahitian Green, Chili Rooibos and Citrus White, also made of organic green, red and white teas. They also sell loose leaf drinking teas and have an awesome menu with organic Asian inspired dishes, salads and burgers as well as duck, seafood and pasta dishes. Their cocktails are artisan-made too, of course infused with their organic teas and fresh fruits and other goodies. Can’t miss out on their fresh made Sangrias either!
337B W. Broadway, NYC | (212) 941-7832 |
8. KitchenAid/House Beautiful’s Kitchen of the Year event with Tyler Florence, Rockefeller Center
Last month, KitchenAid and House Beautiful magazine created the 2011 Dream Kitchen of the Year smack in the middle of Rockefeller Center. Chock full of gorgeous KitchenAid appliances, indoor and outdoor bar and grilling spaces, and of course hosted by Tyler Florence – we were treated to delicious mini-hors d’oeuvres and cocktails and goodie bags filled with KitchenAid cooking utensils and Tyler’s new cookbook “Family Meal”. My favorite recipes out of the cookbook are his down-home Southern specialties like Chicken-Fried Steak with Biscuits and Gravy, Southern-style Fish Fry Up with Big Papa’s Tartar Sauce and Fennel Sausage Hush Puppies. Makes me miss living in the Atlanta – always ready for some good old fashioned Southern comfort food! Now that Autumn is on the horizon, I see a Southern tailgating feast coming right up!
Check out my photos from the Kitchen of the Year event here
Check out KitchenAid’s site here
Buy Tyler Florence’s “Family Meal” Cookbook here
9. Gemma, Bowery – Fresh Ricotta and Pesto Crostini and Arancini Risotto Balls
Gemma is one of those places where you need to go to see and be seen. Connected to the beautiful Bowery Hotel, Gemma is an upscale Italian dining establishment open for lunch, brunch, dinner, cocktails and dessert. My favorite dishes are the Arancini and Polpettine (Risotto Balls and Meatballs), their Buffalo Ricotta and Pesto Crostini, and Oriechette with Broccoli Rabe and Crispy Garlic Chips sautéed in Olive Oil with Red Pepper flakes. They also have amazing wood-fired pizzas, pasta dishes, salumi and formaggi plates, and if you’re in the mood for a massive grilled Bistecca Steak or Roasted Baby Lamb Chops – well, you can get that too. Don’t forget to top off your meal with a Calzone di Nutella or and Affagato (vanilla gelato drowned in espresso) and a shot of Frangelico or Limoncello. Amazing menu and service to match – what more can I say. A NYC must-visit for Italian dining!
335 Bowery, NYC 10003 | (212) 505-9100
10. Teqa, Murray Hill – Braised Short Rib Tacos and Margaritas
Newly opened this summer in Murray Hill, Teqa is a gorgeous tequila bar and Mexican restaurant with a gorgeous menu to accompany the space. The Frozen Hibiscus and Rose Margaritas are a beautiful thing – made with hibiscus-infused el jimador, combier, fresh lime, agave, rosewater mist and hibiscus salt. Order a pitcher (or two!) – you won’t regret this one!
For a dinner entrée, I unashamedly inhaled the Guinness Braised Short Rib Tacos that literally melted in my mouth. The tender, succulent beef is soaked in Teqa’s signature sauce, then topped with grilled corn, lime and queso fresco. The tacos are a bit small (you only get 3 of these babies for a steep $16) but the flavor explosion in your mouth is worth every bite and every penny!
447 Third Avenue, NYC 10016 | (212) 213-3223 |
There’s a lot of choices, almost TOO many choices for great pizza in New York City. I’ve definitely had my share of good and bad, and sometimes “so-so”, but I think I’ve found the BEST pizza in New York so far – Saluggi’s Pizza in TriBeCa.
The pepperoni, fresh basil and mozzarella wood fired pizza is probably my favorite thing on the menu. The crust is thin and perfectly crispy and golden brown. The sauce is a perfect fresh tomato sauce, not too spicy or bland. The pepperoni slices are about as big as the moon, and the fresh basil leaves and mozzarella/parmesan cheese topping are the perfect combination – I’m in love.
Saluggi’s also has a variety of Salads, Subs, Appetizers and Veggie sides – you must try the Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Garlic and Parmesan and their Mini Meatball appetizer which is about 20 savory meatballs swimming in their delicious homemade tomato sauce sprinkled with Parmesan cheese –
good enough to eat on their own with a side of crusty bread or a salad!
Located in the hip TriBeCa/cusp of Soho on Canal and Church Street, it is small but cozy and has outside seating in front. Don’t miss the best slice of pie in NYC!
Saluggi’s Brick Oven Pizza
325 Church St, New York NY 10013
Kaluystan’s Curry Leaf
Kaluystan’s Curry Leaf is one of my favorite Indian restaurants located
in Murray Hill (or “Curry Hill” as we New Yorkers call it). Located on
Lexington Avenue amongst a plethora of other Indian and Curry hotspots,
Curry Leaf has the most delicious Chicken Tikka Masala, Biryani and other
Indian dishes I’ve had since I’ve lived in New York. Owned by Kaluystan’s,
the Asian and Middle Eastern superstore for spices, exotic ingredients and
produce, the food has genuine ingredients and spicy flavors one would expect
from an authentic Indian restaurant and they have great lunch specials for
around $10 including your choice of 2 curries, salad, rice and all the trimmings.
The takeout service is speedy, and the space has an intimate interior with friendly
and courteous staff. My favorite dishes are the Chicken Tikka Masala, Lamb Vindaloo
and Shrimp Biryani, and their Meat and Vegetable Samosas are crispy and flavorful.
Dine In, Takeout and Delivery available. And you must check out the Kaluystan’s
store located up the street on Lexington or order online at Kaluystans.com
99 Lexington Ave New York, NY 10016 | (212) 725-5558
Frites ‘N Meats
Food Trucks have become the hottest culinary trend besides
Organic foods and Independent Artisan Gourmet goods, especially in NYC
and LA. Because I work on Park Ave South, I am lucky to have a great selection
to discover when I need a quick lunch and don’t have a lot of time.
One of the latest discoveries was Frites & Meats. They have delicious
Angus Beef Burgers, Steak Sandwiches, homemade Belgian fries with a
variety of delicious sauces to accompany. Their breads are supplied by
Balthazar, their meats from a local NYC butcher and their cheeses are
supplied by the infamous Murray’s Cheese Shop.
I ordered the Angus Beef Burger on a Potato-Onion Roll, with Gruyere
cheese and fresh field greens. The burger was fresh cooked and delicious
and served in less than 5 minutes flat!
The hot Belgian Fries were served in a cone with a baby fork and
a Dum Dum lollipop! (Quirky little touch) I also ordered a side of the
Spicy Aioli for dipping which complemented the hot, crispy fries
perfectly! All in all I was quite impressed with my Burger and Fries –
beats the crap out of your ordinary fast food joint any day!
Petit Fours – La Delice Pastry Shop
Aaah, Petit Fours – my latest discovery from a delightful little
shop in Murray Hill on 3rd Ave in NYC. I have passed by this shop
a million times on my walk to and from work and have been eyeing
these beauties with anticipation for the past few months. I’m normally
not a person with a sweet tooth, but the other night something happened
and the sweet tooth fairy mesmerized me and led me in to finally covet
one of these gorgeous French pastries.
Petit Fours, small rectangular mini-cakes that originated in France,
are layered with a cream filling and then covered in a sugar glaze frosting.
The best part is, they are small enough to eat one without feeling guilty,
and they come in a variety of flavors such as Cherry, Pineapple, Rum,
Mocha, Chocolate, Vanilla, Lemon and the list goes on. They are heavenly
light, and almost too cute to eat! Definitely stop by La Delice next time
you are in New York City and try out these gorgeous little gems along
with their other goodies – you won’t get past the windows walking by
372 3rd Ave., NYC 10016 | 212.532.4409
Aaahh. Tim Tams. A chocoholic’s dream! I originally discovered
these crispy, chocolately treats when I lived overseas in Melbourne,
Australia. Originally made by Australian biscuit company, Arnotts,
they have now been acquired by Pepperidge Farms and available in
the U.S. Last weekend I spotted them at Gristedes in NYC on 3rd Ave
and 32nd St – my heart flinched and I got butterflies at the sight of them!
Tim Tams are not just an ordinary cookie – they are a chocolate explosion
in your mouth with a balance of two crispy malted wafer biscuits with a
layer of chocolate creme in between them, and then entirely dipped in sweet
milk chocolate. They do come in other flavors – caramel, white chocolate,
black forest, honeycomb, mint and some versions are double dipped and
also come covered in dark chocolate, my absolute favorite!
You can find them at any specialty food store that sells imported items
(I think Zabars on the UWS carries them but if you go there and can’t
find them they have delicious chocolate covered graham crackers which
are available on their online store) – if you can get your grubby hands on
a package of these tasty treats, I highly recommend it..it’s worth the hunt!
(And make sure to eat them with a cup of hot chocolate or a cup of tea, like
the Aussies do – this is referred to as the Tim Tam Slam as noted in Wikipedia
– instructions on how to eat them are spelled out here)
These yummy things are so popular they even have their own
Facebook fan page..Become a Tim Tam fan here:
Mario Batali and Lidia Bastanovic’s gourmet palace is an Italian
gastronomic wonderland, full of fresh and imported cheeses, teas,
chocolates, seafood, produce, wines, cooking tools, with 5 restaurants
to enjoy their delicious homemade food. Located in the Flatiron District
in New York City. Become a Facebook fan at www.facebook.com/EatalyNYC
200 5th Ave. , NYC 10010 | 212.229.2560
Union Square Green Market
Located in between 14th St and 17th St in Union Square NYC is one of the
most amazing fresh markets in New York City. Open on Mondays, Wednesdays,
Fridays and Saturdays featuring fresh produce, meats, cheeses and specialty food
items from local and Upstate New York farmers and artisanal food producers.
If you’re lucky, you’ll catch the Empanada ladies, selling fresh homemade
Spanish Empanadas (pork or chicken) with fresh green salsa and chihuahua
cheese out of their portable cooler case on wheels. To die for!
Spices and Tease
Meet Bruno and Francois from Spices and Tease – the Italian-French
native exotic tea and spice vendor duo in Madison Square Park, New
York City. Animated and full of life, cousins Bruno and Francois greet
each customer with a smile and a warm invitation to enter their tent and
experience the delightful sights and smells of their euphoric selection of
hand-crafted and fragrant top-of-the-line tea, herbs and spice concoctions
that they have imported from Europe and around the world. Try the Smoked
Paprika, the Provence French Sea Salt, and the Salad Spice Mix – fresh,
fantastic and flavorful! These guys are truly spicing things up in the New York
City food scene. If you’re ever in New York City, you can find them at the local
street markets all over the city and you can also find them online at
www.spicesandtease.com and on Twitter @spicesandtease.