Tag Archives: Union Square
I’m counting down the 100 best dishes I tasted in 2016…
This year the iconic Union Squarre Cafe closed due to rising rents. They have since reopened in another location. But in its original space came a Japanese udon shop called TsuruTonTan which is causing quite a ruckus. The signature dish showcases the thick chewy noodles without the need for any broth. This refreshing cold dish is not too dissimilar to a rich carbonara sauce but instead of cheese and bacon, the noodles are slathered with a spicy cod roe sauce and brightened with a refreshing shiso leaf. Price: $16
|21 East 16th Street (between Union Square West and Broadway),
My search for the best cheesecake in New York continues….
I was not expecting to visit Breads for my official cheesecake search. This is an Israeli-owned bakery known more for their breads, rugelach, and babkas than cakes. But this past summer they celebrated cheesecake month and focused on making a different cheesecake dessert each week.
The month-long celebration has ended, but it caught my eye and I discovered that they make a year-long cheesecake. Turns out their unique take on the classic rivals many of the old time Italian bakeries in the city. (more…)
It’s strange writing a conclusion for cheesecake because I feel like I already did that. A few months back, I was asked to write an article for Gothamist about the best cheesecakes in the city. It sped up my journey and I kind of feel like I can now send people to that article when asking where the best is in the city.
But I still should have some sort of conclusion on this site. And so here it is.
I’m counting down the 100 best dishes I tasted in 2015…
It was actually very difficult to narrow down all the things I tasted this year to the 100 Best. It was a good year for food in New York. Food is the best way to create memories and these top ten are dishes I’ll never forget.
NUMBER 10: GRIDDLE PANCAKE SKEWER at TASTE OF NORTHERN CHINA
The specialty of the house at this hard-to-find Chinatown haunt are northern Chinese skewers. Proteins and vegetables are put on a stick, marinated with spices, and then grilled. The most surprising one I discovered was not made of protein or vegetables. It was a pancake. Playfully presented on two sticks (also because it makes it easier to cook the bread over the charcoals), the pancake is like a dense Naan bread, slightly doughy and enhanced by its grilled exterior and seasoned with the same spice mixture the others get. While cumin, chile, and salt are obvious for meat and vegetables, it works even better on this pancake. Price: $1.25
|TASTE OF NORTHERN CHINA|
|88 East Broadway, #106
(entrance on Forsyth Street),
NUMBER 9: CHOCOLATE NUTELLA BABKA at BREADS BAKERY
If you’ve never had the Jewish cake known as babka, it’s both good and bad to start with this one. Good because it is so delicious, but bad because you might never find another babka to compare. This one is the perfect babka. Each layer is filled with Belgian chocolate and Nutella and tastes yeasty, buttery, and sweet. While it might look like a gnarled burnt pretzel, the flavors and freshness speaks volumes. It certainly helps that the very busy Breads bakes their babkas three times throughout the day. Price: $12
|18 East 16th Street (between Fifth Avenue and Union Square West),
NUMBER 8: JERK FRIED WINGS at GLADY’S
It takes chutzpah for a white Jewish kid to open a Caribbean restaurant in Crown Heights, a vibrant Caribbean neighborhood. But the community has embraced him. There is no denying he is doing this food justice. A perfect example are the chicken wings, which are sticky and sweet with a backbone of that smoky, spicy jerk heat. Each piece of meat just fell right off the bone yet held on tight to lots of flavor. On the side was not blue cheese, but a sweet, spicy dipping sauce. Price: $7
|788 Franklin Avenue (at Lincoln Place),
Crown Heights, Brooklyn
NUMBER 7: PIZZA at ARCADE BAKERY
I love hidden cafés and restaurants. You totally feel in the know when you walk into a non-descript office building confident about the hidden little bakery in the lobby. That’s the case with Arcade Bakery, but there not just a gimmick. Their bread and pastries are some of the best in the city. The crust is not usually my favorite part of a pizza, but here it’s all about the bread. The rich softness of the olive-oil slicked crust made me wonder if there was cheese inside the crust (there wasn’t). Each bite revealed a warm yeasty interior and I got lost in the doughy bites contemplating the beauty of life itself. All while hiding out inside an office building lobby. Price: $9
|220 Church Street (between Thomas and Worth Street),
NUMBER 6: THE KOREANO at FUKU
Many food critics have proclaimed the fried chicken sandwich the dish of the year. I tend to agree and most people’s favorite is David Chang’s Korean spin at Fuku. I was skeptical by the hype, but quickly won over. The gigantic piece of chicken is comprised of juicy thigh meat and a super crispy breading that hides lots of spices and flavor. Even more flavor hid inside the bottle of magical Ssam sauce. The funky flavors of ssämjang (fermented bean and chile paste) mingle with the sweetness of sherry vinegar and the spiciness of kochujang. It’s truly incredible and addicting. Price: $9
|163 First Avenue (between East 10th and East 11th Street),
I’m counting down the 100 best dishes I tasted in 2015…
Num Pang is known for their meat-heavy Cambodian-style sandwiches. And they’re great with cilantro and pickled vegetables on a buttery baguette, but I discovered that the flavors are just as bold and unique in salad form. I’ve been addicted to their chimchurri-glazed chicken salad this entire year. On top of bean sprouts, peppers, peanuts, and cabbage, the moist thigh meat is hearty and delicious and only enhanced by the sweet tangy dressing. Price: $10.95
|21 East 12th Street (between Fifth Avenue and University Place),
|140 East 41st Street (between Lexington and Third Avenue),
|148 West 48th Street (between Sixth and Seventh Avenue),
|119 Broadway (between 25th and 26th Street),
|75 Ninth Avenue (at 16th Street),
Inside Chelsea Market,
|225 Liberty Street (at West Street),
Inside Hudson Eats at Brookfield Place
Battery Park City
|75 Broad Street (at South William Street),
Every week, I document another dish that impressed and satiated me during my food adventures around New York City
My parents were in town recently. And that means I rack my brain for good food stops that will also be appropriate for their conservative palates. Desserts are always an easy home run with them, so I immediately looked at this as an opportunity to purchase an entire chocolate babka from Breads Bakery.