Tag Archives: Vegetarian/Vegan

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

For the last five years, I have written about a dish that I have enjoyed in New York every Thursday. And while the dish changed every week, the format has not. So I decided to shake things up.

You can still expect a Dish of the Week on this site, but instead of prose, I’m going to release a video of me discussing the food. It just makes more sense for me. I much prefer talking about food than writing about it. And hopefully, you’ll enjoy hearing about. You can watch them here or on my You Tube page.

There will still be some written reviews about pizza, ice cream, dumplings, etc. But hopefully this will be more visual, appealing, and hunger-inducing. Enjoy!

Let me know in the comments what you think about this new format.

Price: $13 (lunch)/$16 (dinner)

BUNNA CAFE
1084 Flushing Avenue (at Porter Avenue),
Bushwick, Brooklyn
(347) 295-2227
bunnaethiopia.net

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

The lunch choices at Her Name is Han are mostly comprised of combination platters and bapsang, consisting of a main protein and a number of side dishes.

It’s a great way to taste a little of a lot of things at this modern hip Korean restaurant located just on the outskirts of Koreatown.

The bapsang is mostly a good deal, but does leave you a little hungry. That’s part of why I also ordered the black seasame tofu. And amazingly, it was a bit heartier and more filling than the very light combo platter.

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

I’ve had all sorts of fake meat over the years. Broccoli hot dogs. Veggie burgers made from just about anything you can imagine (except meat. of course). And most recently I tried a yuba philly cheesesteak that blew my mind.

But through it all, I’ve never tasted anything that pretended to be fish. Unless you count those imitation crab sticks. So I was intrigued and a bit skeptical when I discovered that Orchard Grocer, the new trendy vegan bodega was serving lox made out of carrots.

It’s pretty ballsy to hawk a bagel with vegan cream cheese and carrot lox in the Lower East Side. Despite the changing demographics of the neighborhood, the breakfast sandwich is still associated with the historic Jewish immigrants that once lived here.

But I tell you, the masterminds behind this vegan deli would have made bubbe and zayde proud.

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

I just got back from another trip to Philadelphia. And while there, of course, I had to try another of the city’s famed cheesesteaks. One day (after many more trips to Philly), I will have an answer for what I think is the best cheesesteak in the city of Brotherly Love. For now, I say it is Dalessandro’s.

No question, you need to head 90 miles southwest to appreciate a real cheesesteak. But I often get asked (mostly by international visitors), where to get the best cheesesteak in NYC. I have a few suggestions (Phil’s Steaks, Shorty’s), but my newest discovery will definitely be the most controversial.

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I’m counting down the 100 best dishes I tasted in 2016…

2016 was a tough year. From a whirlwind political circus to the loss of many beloved celebrities to worldwide tragedies, the news was full of sad things. But there was still joy out there and as usual, I found a lot of that joy through food. And here in New York, these are the 5 dishes that gave me the most joy….

NUMBER 5: RICOTTA HOT CAKES at TWO HANDS BAR & RESTAURANT

Australian-owned coffee shops and cafés are taking over the city. And if they all do brunch as well as Two Hands, I’m happy to give it to them. I’m especially taken with their amazingly gluten free ricotta hot cakes. The large hotcake is browned to the edge yet the interior is cheesy and doughy (although not with actual dough). It’s topped with a tangy whipped ricotta, seasonal berries, and pecans for crunch. Of course, as any brunch cake should, it’s served with a side of maple syrup. Price: $14

TWO HANDS RESTAURANT & BAR
251 Church Street (between Leonard and Franklin Street),
Tribeca
twohandsnyc.com

NUMBER 4: U & I at MU RAMEN

This is an appetizer fit for a king. I probably went a little overboard eating it by myself, but it’s been a tough year. If translated into English terms, the uninitiated might not want to try the sea urchin gonads (uni) and fish eggs (ikura), but these are two of the greatest culinary pleasures I can think of. And together, they are just amazing. The bright orange uni is as creamy, sweet, and rich as it gets. The four lobes sat on a bed of warm rice and a spicy tuna mixture. More texture was provided in the abundant briny roe which was tamed by the strips of toasted dried seaweed. And then on top, sat a round of potent and fresh wasabi. Market Price

MU RAMEN
1209 Jackson Avenue (between 48th Avenue and 47th Road),
Long Island City, Queens
(917) 868-8903
ramennyc.wixsite.com/popup

NUMBER 3: PASTRAMI BACON at HOMETOWN BAR-B-QUE

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Hometown Bar-B-que is the best barbecue we have in New York. It’s worth trekking out to Red Hook to get a taste of anything they smoke. This year, I was brought to meat heaven by a slab of grilled, smoked bacon. It was seasoned generously with pepper and pastrami spices and featured char marks along the exterior. It had the perfect layer of fat, which was buttery but not unctuous. Each bite was peppery, smoky, and luscious. I can’t think of a better pairing than the accompanying sweet and spicy honey mustard sauce. I’m excited to see what smoked meat from Hometown will end up on next year’s list. Price: $14 per 1/4 pound

HOMETOWN BAR-B-QUE
454 Van Brunt Street (at Reed Street),
Red Hook, Brooklyn
(347) 294-4644
hometownbarbque.com

NUMBER 2: CARROT CREPE at OLMSTED

This particular dish is not just at the top of my list, but many restaurant critics and bloggers around the city. Olmsted was hand’s down one of the top dining experiences of the year. And this crepe made from carrots was impeccable. Yes, it’s a crepe made from carrots, but it’s similar in texture to a giant tender ravioli. Inside littleneck clams are buttery and briny and pair perfectly with the creamy complex carrot reduction. Sunflower seeds and sweet carrot ribbons provide crunch and texture. It’s a gorgeously plated dish and one of the rare ones that tastes as good as it looks. Price: $15

OLMSTED
659 Vanderbilt Avenue (between Park Place and Prospect Place),
Prospect Heights, Brooklyn
(718) 0552-2610
olmstednyc.com

NUMBER 1: SHIITAKE “CACIO E PEPE” at NIX

Cacio e pepe is a classic Roman pasta dish that is as simple as it gets: cheese and black pepper. It has also somehow become quite trendy in NYC lately. Chef John Fraser’s version loses the pasta and replaces it with rich polenta and tender peppery shiitake mushrooms that are sliced to provide an al dente texture. The rich woodsy notes of those shrooms are countered with sweet bites of corn kernels and a few bright green beans. Of course, as is appropriate, the dish is showered with plenty of sharp pecorino cheese. It’s honestly a dish I have been thinking about since I tasted it and it’s the best thing I tried all year. Price: $24

NIX
72 University Place (between East 10th and East 11th Street),
Greenwich Village
(212) 498-9393
nixny.com

I’m counting down the 100 best dishes I tasted in 2016…

You wouldn’t expect what looks like a giant charred bone-in rib eye steak to walk through the dining room of vegetarian-focused Nix. It’s actually not a steak but a game-changing dessert cut to resemble a steak. A quartered tandoor-roasted pineapple is crisped and brushed with a tangy tamarind glaze, vegan whipped cream (made from chickpeas), and toasted macadamia nuts. It’s absolutely amazing – and needs to be ordered in advance.

NIX
72 University Place (between East 10th and East 11th Street),
Greenwich Village
(212) 498-9393
nixny.com

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