Tag Archives: Hotel Dining

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

DIRTY FRENCH, 180 Ludlow Street (between Houston and Stanton Street), Inside Ludlow Hotel, Lower East SidePrices at New York restaurants are getting out of control. I understand there a lot of factors to this (rent hikes, food costs, aggressive PR), but it’s getting to the point where I laugh in shock every time I open a menu.

At Dirty French, it’s so hip and expensive that the prices aren’t even posted on their online menu. This is one of the more recent openings in the Torrisi-Carbone powerhouse and they focus on classic French brasserie food. I haven’t made it to Santina yet and have not been able to save up enough to check out Carbone. But I am a fan of the food at the more affordable Parm, so I thought a lunch excursion to Dirty French was in order.

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

QUEEN OF THE NIGHT, Diamond Horseshoe at Paramount Hotel, 235 West 46th Street (between Broadway and Eighth Avenue), Midtown WestI started this website really to combine my two passions: food and performance. And I continue to have success (and lots of fun) doing that with my comedic food videos. But I recently went to a dinner that fully combined those ideas into one unique, exhilirating night.

It’s called Queen of the Night and comes from some exciting theatrical producers who also had a hand in the immersive shows Sleep No More and The Donkey Show (two of my favorite experiences). What’s even more exciting with this show is that it includes dinner.

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Come back every Wednesday for another funny, informative video documenting my inept food adventures. 

As we put 2014 to bed, I one more time dream about the ten best dishes I tasted throughout the year. You can read more about each dish here or you can just watch this video and revel in my gluttony.

Top 10 Dishes of 2014


Looking back on 2014, I present the most memorable and greatest dishes of my year.

In years past, I’ve done a full two month countdown of all 100 of my favorite dishes. This year, I decided to just focus on and give praise to the ten most memorable dishes of the year. I’ll still put out a complete 100 Best list, but for now, I’m going to cut right to the chase. So here are the ten best dishes I consumed in 2014.

NUMBER 10: SCRAMBLED EGGS at GATO

Scrambled Eggs at GATO

You might think anybody can scramble some eggs, but celebrity chef Bobby Flay shows us how it’s really done. This year, he proved he was more than just a pretty face with his hit Spanish restaurant Gato. The food is actually quite good and the most impressive is a seemingly simple plate of fluffy breakfast food. The eggs are tossed with butter, creme fraiche, and goat cheese and drizzled with chives and hot sauce. They seduce you atop some grilled toast smeared with tomato confit oil and spicy almond romesco sauce. I’ll admit these are a far cry from what ends up on my homecooked breakfast plate. Price: $14

GATO
324 Lafayette Street (between Bleecker and East Houston Street),
Noho
(212) 334-6400
gatonyc.com

NUMBER 9: THICK-CUT SMOKED BACON at KEENS STEAKHOUSE

Thick-Cut Smoked Bacon at KEENS STEAKHOUSE

I just wrote about this dish last week, but I’m sure it will never leave my memory. This classic steakhouse cooks up a legendary and memorable mutton chop, but nothing is as good as their thickly sliced pork belly fat. It has a perfect layer of both caramelized fat and flavorful meat that is blessed with a lick of sweetness and a subtle smokiness. This is one to eat with a knife and fork. It’s like a giant and juicy bacon steak. Price: $14

KEENS STEAKHOUSE
72 West 36th Street (between Sixth and Fifth Avenue),
Midtown West
(212) 947-3636
keens.com

NUMBER 8: CARROTS WELLINGTON at NARCISSA

Carrots Wellington at NARCISSA

Vegetables have been front and center this year and nobody has used them better than Chef John Fraser at Narcissa. The hip restaurant turns out exceptional vegetable dishes that are disguised as meat. Case in point: there is no beef in this wellington. A golden buttery puff pastry hugs glazed and roasted carrots in addition to a sprinkling of a surprisingly umami-laden espresso and walnut crumble. It’s decadent and tender ensuring that the phrase “Where’s the Beef?” never comes to mind. Price: $24

NARCISSA
21 Cooper Square
(corner of 5th Street and Bowery),
Inside The Standard Hotel
East Village
(212) 228-3344
narcissarestaurant.com

NUMBER 7: CHEESECAKE at EILEEN’S SPECIAL CHEESECAKE

Plain Cheesecake at EILEEN'S SPECIAL CHEESECAKE

The cheesecake debate in New York continues. Rich, concrete-like NY-style cheesecake or creamy, fluffy Italian-style cheesecake. I know where I stand – right in the center with Eileen’s. At this old-school Soho joint, Eileen Avezzano bakes cheesecakes in all sorts of traditional and interesting (like chocolate bourbon) flavors, but you get a true sense of her brilliance in the plain version. With a smattering of graham crackers around the edges, the center effortlessly walks that difficult line between sweet and tangy, rich and light, delicious and more delicious. Price: Full Cakes range between $12.50-$40/Mini-Tarts are $3.50

EILEEN’S SPECIAL CHEESECAKE
17 Cleveland Place (at Kenmare Street),
Nolita
(212) 966-5585
eileenscheesecake.com

NUMBER 6: FALAFEL SANDWICH at MURRAY’S FALAFEL 

Loaded!!!

I never would have guessed that my favorite falafel in NYC would belong to a tiny, modest little place in Stuyvesant Town that nobody seems to have heard of. Murray’s Falafel has the best falafel I’ve tasted in the city The greaseless, crunchy orbs give way to a light, tender interior that has all the flavors of herbs and chickpeas you want from this Middle Eastern specialty. Pita bread is loaded with one crunch bomb after another, while tahini and a bright, spicy green hot sauce bring the sandwich to life. I urge you to check this place out right now. It’s a true undiscovered gem. Price: $6.95

MURRAY’S FALAFEL
261 First Avenue (between 15th and 16th Street),
Stuyvesant Town
(212) 533-1956
murraysfalafel.com

Rotisserie-Crisped Beets at NARCISSA

Making vegetable dishes that exceed expectations, John Fraser puts an unexpected twist on beets. Crisp and sweet, the beets are enhanced by creamed horseradish and lots of bright flavors like apples and pickled cucumbers. Price: $15

NARCISSA
21 Cooper Square
(corner of 5th Street and Bowery),
Inside The Standard Hotel
East Village
(212) 228-3344
narcissarestaurant.com

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

NARCISSA, 21 Cooper Square (corner of 5th Street and Bowery), Inside The Standard Hotel, East Village

Vegetables are all the rage today. Forget barbecue or burgers. Restaurants are opening all across the city dedicated to making the healthiest food group taste as delicious as a slab of bacon. Well, almost.

And I’m not talking about vegetarian restaurants, but carnivrous chefs who elevate beets or kale right alongside duck and lamb.

One of the new (and hippest) restaurants in town to do this is Narcissa. It’s located inside The Standard Hotel in the East Village (a place to go just to be seen) and it’s where Chef John Fraser is making the city go ga-ga for veggies.

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