Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Lao Sze Chuan, Chicago, Il

Just before heading to the airport, we decided to hit some Chinese food in Chinatown. Lao Sze Chuan seemed to match what we were looking for as we wanted a chili kick. This is a serve of the Chef's spicy dry chili chicken, despite my request to make it as spicy as possible, the chicken didn't really pick up the chili kick unless we ate the dried chilies as well, so that's what we did. Overall the food was very decent and the amount of meat was good for the price.

2172 S Archer Ave
(between Wentworth Ave & 21st St)
Chicago, IL 60616
Neighborhood: Chinatown
(312) 326-5040


Monday, July 18, 2011

The Purple Pig, Chicago, Il

Wow this had to be one of the best, if not the best meal we had in Chicago. Fearing that The Purple Pig might be another hyped up Chicago joint, we braved some foul weather to get here. The wait at about twenty minutes was nothing to us (after all we're pretty used to waiting much longer at a decent place in Manhattan). Small plate dining prevails here and a nice group allowed us to sample most of their fare. The roasted bone marrow was spot on, another mention should go to the veal shoulder slow roasted in milk and served on some of the creamiest and smoothest mash potato I have ever tasted. If you're in Chicago, you have to drop by The Purple Pig.

500 N Michigan Ave
(between Illinois St & Grand Ave)
Chicago, IL 60611
Neighborhood: Near North Side
(312) 464-1744


Thursday, July 07, 2011

XOCO, Chicago, Il

I guess no trip to Chicago is complete without a visit to one of Rick Bayless' restaurants. We weren't that hungry or keen on waiting two hours for a table at Frontera so we hopped into the more casual XOCO next door and had some salsa, chips, churros and hot chocolate. With an extensive selection of hot chocolates here to pair with your churros, this place will definitely indulge the hot chocolate fan. The churros were light and airy and amount of sugar was just enough to complement the semi-bitter Mexican hot chocolate that I ordered.

449 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60654
Neighborhood: Near North Side
(312) 334-3688


Monday, May 30, 2011

Girl & the Goat, Chicago, Il

One of the trendier and more popular restaurants in Chicago, Girl & the Goat serves New American fare, which I always felt to be a synonym for some sort of fusion type category. Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against fusion but when executed poorly, it just becomes a mix of nonsensical flavors. Fortunately, Girl & the Goat had more hits than misses, the only real bummer being the calamari which was too salty. More interesting dishes include the roasted pork face, goat carpaccio and the hanger steak with Vietnamese style fish sauce. By all means I think it's worth a visit, not sure if it's worth the two month waiting period to get a table on the weekend though.

809 W Randolph St

(between Halsted St & Green St)
Chicago, IL 60607
Neighborhoods: Near West Side, West Loop
(312) 492-6262


Monday, May 09, 2011

Grill 21, Manhattan, USA

Grill 21 is my go-to venue for Filipino food, well for their crispy pata to be exact which is a whole deep fried pig leg. Sure they have other dishes that are very tasty in their own right such as the pork adobo and tocino but those turn into mere distractions when compared with the crisp and crunchy skin of the deep fried pig leg giving way to moist and juicy meat. The best way to enjoy this is to do without the cutlery and get into it with your bare hands caveman style.

346 E 21st St
(between 2nd Ave & 1st Ave)
New York, NY 10010
Neighborhood: Gramercy
(212) 473-5950

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Pio Pio, Manhattan, USA

Pio Pio is one of those places with a small menu but what they do, they do pretty darn well. Specialising in Peruvian style roasted chicken, the chicken here is well marinated and juicy throughout. Even the white meat portions were juicily tasty. The slightly spicy and creamy green sauce that accompanies the chicken elevates a very good chicken to a great chicken. For non-chicken lovers, the jalea fried seafood platter and avocado salad are pretty good too.

210 E 34th St
New York, NY 10079
Neighborhoods: Murray Hill, Kips Bay, Midtown East
(212) 481-0034


Monday, April 25, 2011

Taverna Kyclades, Astoria, NYC

This is possibly the best Greek food I've had in New York so far. A stranger to no one familiar with the plethora of Greek restaurants in Astoria; Kyclades never fails to deliver. The food is fresh and bountiful and the prices are very reasonable.

Seafood is the key here, the grilled octopus, calamari and broiled scallops are done simply with a quick heat and a drizzle of olive oil and lemon juice allowing the freshness to speak for itself. That being said, the non-seafood items here are pretty darn tasty in their own right too.

3307 Ditmars Blvd
Astoria, NY 11105
Neighborhood: Astoria
(718) 545-8666


Sunday, April 17, 2011

Posto Pizza, Manhattan, NYC

So New York and pizza are pretty much synonymous by now but the pizza wars are eternal and everyone sides with their own school. Chicago with their deep dish, the New York slice, Californian style pizza, it's a face-off that goes on forever. Being the pacifist that I am, I personally don't believe in categorizing slices by their origin or style, as far as I'm concerned, there's only a good slice and a bad slice. Fortunately Posto makes a pretty damn good slice, this is a half and half of meat lovers and the shroomtown and despite being quite the carnivore, the mushroom slice with the medley of portobello, shitake, button and white truffle oil definitely was the winner this afternoon. The crust here is of the super thin and crisp variety, which made it "lighter" and perfect for a lunch before heading back to work.

310 2nd Ave
(between 18th St & 19th St)
New York, NY 10003
Neighborhood: Gramercy
(212) 716-1200


Friday, April 08, 2011

Boka, Manhattan, NYC

What's better than fried chicken? Korean fried chicken. I am officially in love with these crunchy juicy morsels. Boka serves korean fried chicken from Bon Chon and they're available in soy garlic or spicy. Those who read my blog should know which one I veer towards. Just wish that the spicy could just pack a little more zing.

9 St. Marks Pl
(between 3rd Ave & Astor Pl)
New York, NY 10003
Neighborhood: East Village
(212) 228-2887


Friday, March 25, 2011

Super Taste, Manhattan, NYC

Continuing on with my noodle trend. Here's a piping hot bowl of hand pulled noodles from Super Taste. Sure the meat wasn't the best quality but the flavor of the soup, the bite of the noodles, two dollops of chili oil and that sunny fried egg on top sure was tasty. And all of this plus a serve of dumplings for hardly $10? What more can I ask for?

26 Eldridge St
(between Canal St & Division St)
New York, NY 10002
Neighborhoods: Chinatown, Lower East Side
(212) 625-1198


Monday, March 21, 2011

Via Emilia, Manhattan, NYC

Good to find a decent Italian place near work in case if I'm in the mood for pasta. Via Emilia serves some pretty nice freshly made al dente pastas. This is the chicken and wild mushroom tortelloni in truffle olive oil sauce; as a non-cream-based sauce, this was delightfully light and refreshing. Wish I could I say the same for the service though, I'm not one to gripe about service usually but forgetting orders (especially during the tight lunch hour- one waitress on duty non-withstanding) is not exactly one way to make a customer happy. If there's another redeeming factor; they do have a decent selection of lambrusco!

47 E 21st St
(between Park Ave & Broadway)
New York, NY 10003
Neighborhood: Flatiron
(212) 505-3072


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Excellent Pork Chop House, Manhattan, NYC

So this isn't exactly like the food in Taiwan but when you're craving some Taiwanese food, it does a pretty good job. Pickled vegetables and stewed minced pork on some pretty chewy noodles, a dollop of chili oil, the grilled pork chop and fried chicken leg and some other side dishes. Just the perfect quick meal for lunch.

3 Doyers St
(between Bowery & Chatham Sq)
New York, NY 10013
Neighborhoods: Chinatown, Civic Center
(212) 791-7007


Thursday, March 10, 2011

Reheating Pizza

Is this the best way to reheat pizza? "Best" is a strong word, so I don't know if I can commit to that but this sure is one damn good way to reheat a slice.
NYC is the land of good thin slice but often times, my ambition far exceeds my talent and I have a slice or two leftover. Sure eating it straight out from the fridge is a great hangover cure but sometimes, I pretend to be classy and want to heat a slice up. Cranking up my oven seems a tad bit too much for a slice (albeit a rather large slice) so after a recommendation from a friend, I decided to try heating it up on a non-stick frying pan. I took my slice of Lombardi's toss it on the pan, added some sliced pepperoni and it actually turned out REALLY good... damn this thing tasted as though it was fresh from the oven. The trick is to keep the heat really low... and if you want the cheese to go soft a little quicker you could cover it with foil for a bit too. But for now, I'm going to enjoy my slice.


Saturday, March 05, 2011

RUB BBQ, Manhattan, NYC

New York isn't the first place that comes to mind when one is thinking about bbq, but fortunately there are some decent bbq joints here that can help with those cravings for smokey, tender flesh. RUB (an acronym for Righteous Urban BBQ) is one of the better ones in town.

We ordered the Baron's Platter which is basically a sampler of their meats which included ribs, pastrami, smoked ham, smoked turkey, roasted chicken, home made sausage, brisket and pulled pork. The pulled pork in particular was extremely tender and tasty although the rest all had a nice smokey flavor. The sides of deep fried "super" fries and onion strings were crisp and had a nice seasoning on it as opposed to the usual one-dimensional salt. Lastly, I think anywhere that serves a mean deep fried oreo for dessert deserves to be frequented at least once.

208 W 23rd St
(between 7th Ave & 8th Ave)
New York, NY 10011
Neighborhood: Chelsea
(212) 524-4300

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Cold Snow and Baby Pineapples - dbgb -

"I apologise if you think i'm ranting... but this is exactly a sample of my thought process and of course again.. you don't have to agree with it.. and it's still work in progress and evolving.. but there are many povs in life and i'm just sharing mine with you... but yes.. this is why i think in a global sense.. because essentially all humans the same [sic]... we're just as good and definitely just as bad and we'll all to some degree fit to the bell curve...

i just want to be honest with you because i do think honesty is important... and i rather you hate me for who i am than love me for who i'm not."


Friday, February 25, 2011

Kuho 65, Brooklyn, NYC

So on a particular chilly night, hotpot was definitely a viable option. We decided to check out this place based on a client's recommendation. Hotpot and sushi? Interesting.

We were rather pleasantly surprised with the quality and cleanliness of the restaurant. The hotpots are individual little pots so there's no communal dunking, the food is fresh and replenished quickly. The variety of sauces is also quite decent. The beef in particular was quite nicely marbled.

Expecting the sushi to take a backseat in this meal, the variety of rolls we ordered were definitely better than some non-buffet joints. True, it's not the best sushi in the world but for this price, their spicy tuna rolls do give the rest of the competition a run for their money.

1703 65 St
Brooklyn, NY 11204
Neighborhood: Bensonhurst
(718) 232-5688


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Awash, Manhattan, NYC

Located on 6th street between 1st and 2nd ave, it was my first time trying this place. Have always been on a lookout for decent Ethiopian food after the first time having had it in DC.

Glad to say that the food here wasn't a wash, most of the flavors were distinct and the spice was not overpowering. In particular, the gored gored which is basically spiced raw beef cubes was quite delectable. Finishing the meal with some tej, this place may become a regular for my Ethiopian fix after all.