Category Archives: DISH OF THE WEEK

Every week, I document another dish that impressed and satiated me during my food adventures around New York City

As I talked to the friendly guy behind the counter at Golda (perhaps the owner of this breezy Bed-Stuy café), he asked if I lived in the neighborhood. When I told him that I lived quite a bit away. I think he was pretty surprised and confused as to why I came all this way to eat an egg sandwich at a new local joint.

But that’s what I do. I think I may be one of the few that fully take advantage of the city and try to become a local everywhere.

And that includes this gentrifying part of Bedford-Stuyvesant. The last time I was out here things looked very different. There was certainly not a brunch-friendly spot with cold brewed coffee.

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Every week, I document another dish that impressed and satiated me during my food adventures around New York City

I generally don’t go in for gimmicks – and there are a lot of them in the food world. Granted, I’d be happy to try them but I usually see through them as gimmicks. I was planning to write off the de-constructed latte at the hip and crowded Coffee Project New York as just that, but after I sat and tasted it, I have to admit that it worked.

Although they will serve you a shot of espresso, a cold brew, or cappuccino, the general concept here are different “coffee projects.” As far as I know, since they opened two years ago, they’ve only had two projects. One is a Nitro Flight where they prepare one nitro cold brew black and one nitro cold brew with milk. I didn’t try that one.

The “project” that I tried is the one that has gotten them a lot of press and Instagram fame: the de-constructed latte.

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Every week, I document another dish that impressed and satiated me during my food adventures around New York City

Years ago, a modest little food truck called Souvlaki GR was all the rage. It won the Vendy Award (two years in a row) and we started including them regularly on our Financial District Food Cart Tours.

I got to know both the food and the owners (there were three of them to begin with). As time went on, two of the owners (husband and wife Paul and Abby) split with the other and they went on to open their own restaurants deep in the heart of hipster Lower East Side.

We continued visiting the truck until they stopped parking in that area and now I miss their impeccable pita bread, grilled souvlaki sticks, and homemade tzatziki.

Just recently, Abby and Paul added another restaurant to their growing family (they also own Forgetmenot, Kiki’s, and Monroe). This one is called Sherman’s because the shoe store that used to be in this space bared that name. And of all their new restaurants, it’s the one that comes closest to the superb casual street food of Souvlaki GR. (more…)


Every week, I document another dish that impressed and satiated me during my food adventures around New York City

I meet a lot of Australians – probably more than most Americans. One of the things about Australians is that they travel a lot and on almost every tour I lead, I find there are at least two (often more). And we get to talking and over the years I have learned so much about Australian culture I feel like I should be an honorary Aussie.

One thing I have heard about (mostly on my food cart tours comparing it to a Belgian waffle) but never had the pleasure to taste was an Anzac Biscuit. I learned that these were first created for troops overseas during World War I as a cookie to travel the long distance and not spoil.

So when I saw something called an Anzac Bikkie at an Australian-run coffee shop in Midtown, I immediately knew what it was and what I had to do. I also knew that Bikkie is one of the common Australian abbreviations (this one for biscuit). They love to abbreviate everything – check out this video.

Taylor St. Baristas opened in Midtown a few years ago and sort of lays low in the NYC coffee scene. It’s the first US outpost of a London coffee company started by some Australian friends (they also take their coffee very seriously!!)

The coffee was as good as expected, but I was most excited about the Anzac cookie. I mean, I had waited all this time.

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Every week, I document another dish that impressed and satiated me during my food adventures around New York City

Every week in New York, there are a slew of great local restaurants that are forced to close due to rising rents, changes in the food world, etc. With all these unfortunate changes, it’s sometimes a relief to stop and think about the ones that are succeeding and growing.

The Gumbo Bros. started a few years back as an idea between two friends who went to school in New Orleans and started a modest stand at the pop-up markets around the city. I met them at the Vendy Awards and was very excited to see them committed to bringing authentic Cajun food to the city. Many of the businesses at those markets seem to come and go, but the Gumbo Bros. actually got to open their own restaurant on busy Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn.

This permanent space isn’t terribly bigger than their market stall but there are seats and beer and a larger menu.

When I found the time to stop by, I wanted to try more of their namesake – I’ll have to get the po’ boys another time. I remember their gumbos being good at the Vendy Awards but not quite this good.

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Every week, I document another dish that impressed and satiated me during my food adventures around New York City

There are certain restaurants that I try so hard to get to, but it takes longer than I hoped. The Brooklyn iteration of El Atoradero (which I visited up in the Bronx when Denisse Chavez was serving her carnitas from a modest bodega) is one of those restaurants.

It’s tucked away in Prospect Heights and originally they were only open for dinner except for the weekends when they open the back garden for brunch. That has changed as of this writing and now I could visit them just about any day for lunch, but I managed to already check it off my list on a weekend afternoon.

That’s not to say I won’t want to return on a Tuesday afternoon, for instance, because the Mexican food is excellent. The carnitas tacos are the runaway hit and the meaty, crisp pork chunks are heavenly. Expect to see them on my year Top 100 dishes.

But I was very excited that the waitstaff allowed me to order something off the dinner menu even though we were quite a few hours before the sun would begin to set. And that something ended up being richly flavored and incredibly hearty.

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