Category Archives: Latin/Mexican & Caribbean

Bad Hombre

First, check out my Ride & Review HERE:

Amigo is now Bad Hombre! Ruben transformed the space and made it absolutely gorgeous inside.

What an amazing bar, matched by amazing cocktails.

We basically tried the entire menu, except for a few items here and there. As is common with Ruben’s restaurants, everything was off the charts delicious. These were some of the best, most delicious oysters I’ve ever had.

This scallop crudo was a great balance of natural sweetness with some seasoned heat.

Shrimp and octopus aguachile? HELL YES! The octopus here was cooked perfectly.

This corn gratin dip was a nice combo of sweet and heat too. It may not look like much, but it packed a wallop of flavor.

We tried three different tortilla based items: shrimp tacos, a fish tostada, and a mushroom quesadilla. I am hard pressed to choose a favorite among these, but I think the mushroom was a real standout to me. Much like the mushroom carpaccio at Nai and Emelia. A true winner.

The grilled octopus here was absolutely gorgeous, and the black bean puree sauce hits you with some Indian and middle eastern spices that will blow you away.

I could not resist the chimichurri skirt steak. Delicious!

These St. Louis ribs fell apart when I picked them up. So friggin’ tender! They were cooked confit style and glazed with soy and sesame.

But honestly, I was caught off guard by how insanely tasty these crispy habanero aioli Brussels sprouts were. I could eat them every day for the rest of my life and never get tired of them.

Dessert was also a home run. The chocolate mousse with sea salt flakes was rich without being heavy. It was fluffy and extremely well balanced – not too sweet.

This semi-frozen panna cotta with pineapple granita was so creamy and delicious too. What an understated and gentle but powerful flavor bomb!

I can not wait to go back here for more meals. Everything Ruben touches is incredible.

BAD HOMBRE
29 2nd Ave.
New York, NY 10003

Superbueno

Check out my ass-kicking Ride & Review video HERE first:

This taco bar opened up in the space that was formerly Boilermaker, and it serves up some amazing cocktails, like the mushroom margarita!

My wife and I tried two types of tacos: crispy pork belly (my fave) and al pastor (her fave).

Truly both were excellent, so you can’t go wrong with either. We also had the nachos, which are vegeterian as far as I can tell. Made with mushrooms, poblanos and mole sauce.

I will definitely go back to try more stuff!

SUPERBUENO
13 1st Ave., New York, NY 10003

Sunset Park Taco Crawl

Some foodie friends from Instagram gathered for a taco crawl of Sunset Park’s best and most price friendly selections.

First was Tacos el Bronco. There’s a sit down spot on 4th Ave and 44th Street, but we hit the food truck nearby. We did a beef tongue taco and veal head taco. The veal head was slightly better since it was sort of stewed, and had more flavor. The tongue needed a hint of salt.

Next up was Don Pepe Tortas & Jugos. Here we tried a watermelon juice, the special “arab” beef taco, which was spicy and delicious, and a cemita (grilled sandwich). The arab taco was the winner here.

For the last spot, we went to a hidden speakeasy restaurant in the back of La Union Deli Grocery (Mi Pequno Chinantia). Here we tried a goat taco and mixed meat pork taco. The mixed meat was the king here. The goat was a little too gamey for us. We also has some tamales here too. The verde was really delicious.

TACOS EL BRONCO
Food Truck
5th Avenue at 37th Street
Brooklyn, NY 11232

DON PEPE TORTAS & JUGOS
3908 5th Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11232

LA UNION DELI GROCERY CORP
(MI PEQUNO CHINANTIA)
4011 5th Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11232

San Loco Tacos

First, check out my Ride & Review video HERE:

This self proclaimed “gringo taco joint” is really great, in my humble opinion. This is basic stuff – sort of like a high end, better version of Taco Bell.

We tried two tacos and a handheld burrito during their lunch special pricing (two tacos $9, comes with drink; burrito plus guac and chips for $12, comes with drink).

Both were great, with the pork carnitas taco being the best of all. Better than the beef and better than the chipotle chicken. We opted to eat at the bar and upgrade our drinks to frozen margaritas (we tried tamarind and cactus pear).

Great spot. Can’t wait to go back!

SAN LOCO TACOS
111 Ave C
New York, NY 10009

Cubaton Sandwich Shop

Our best bite in Miami was the cubano sandwich from a small, relatively new shop called Cubaton. It was incredible!

Had I known it was this good, I would have went twice. We were leaving for home the same day we went here.

The frozen drinks were great too.

CUBATON SANDWICH SHOP
413 15th St
Miami Beach, FL 33139

Palermo Bistro

First, check out my Ride 7 Review video HERE:

The PR folks who are helping manage the newly opened Palermo Bistro (right on restaurant row) invited me in for a dinner to feature their Parrillada mixed Argentinian grill platter. Here’s what my wife and I had:

First, the Vitel Tone, which is similar to vitello tonnato – the Tuscan dish often made with veal (as the name suggests), or even wild boar, that tastes like tuna. This was great here, made with veal eye round and anchovy.

Next was the octopus, which was very tender inside and crisp outside.

I paid a little extra for this NY strip milanese (along with a drink), because I had to try it out. It was excellent!

That was really all I wanted when I saw the menu online, but the parrillada was better than I expected. Generally, these things let me down, but here, we loved the blood sausage and the hanger steak the most.

On the side, we had mashed potatoes, broccolini and humita, which was similar to a cheese and polenta dish.

For dessert, we had the banana bread pudding with vanilla ice cream. I liked this because it wasn’t too sweet, as many bread puddings can be.

Cocktails and bread service was nice.

I also liked the wall decor.

Give this place a shot – especially for the veal app and the milanese!

PALERMO BISTRO
373 W 46th St
New York, NY 10036

Cibao

First, check out my Ride & Review video HERE:

This joint dates back to 1958, when it was called La Lechonera. In 1978 it became Cibao, and it remains a neighborhood icon to this day.

I’ve walked by it many times, and always wanted to try it. There are a lot of great Hispanic and Latin American food places nearby, like Castillo de Jagua (I and II), Casa Adela, and Castillo de Manhattan. I’ve tried all of those, and now I’ve finally made it to Cibao for some grub.

Everything was tasty. Here’s what we tried:

First up was the Cuban sandwich. So crisp and tasty. Great ratio of meat to mayo to pickles to cheese. This is a win, especially at just $9.

Next, the bone-in chicken chicharrones. The only way to get them! Juicy inside, golden brown outside and with very flavorful, super crispy skin. Perfect! I want to order the larger format fried chicken items next time to see how they compare.

The Pernil was a little dry, but overall still really tasty. Best for sandwiches that have cheese, pickles and mayo, to juicy it up a little bit. Or maybe they could serve this with a little cup of the roasting juices/drippings.

The sides were good too. We tried the green plantains, yellow rice and beans. Platano power!

We washed it all down with some delicious Morir Sonando (orange juice and milk drink).

I will definitely be back here again for the fried chicken and mofongo, and I’ll likely order it for delivery as well. The Sancocho is only offered on specific days, so I’ll definitely have to go for that.

CIBAO
72 Clinton St
New York, NY 10002

Omar’s Kitchen

First, check out my Ride & Review video for this spot HERE:

My wife and I have walked by this place a bunch recently, and it reminded us of a smaller version of Miss Lily’s. The food looked great, and my best friend from growing up said that he heard great “tings” about it, so we had to give it a try.

Omar’s serves up Caribbean and Jamaican food in a small, casual and lively spot on Clinton Street just below Houston. The cocktails are awesome. This Scotch Bonnet pepper margarita was incredible. A perfect balance of heat, sweet and savory refreshment.

These Scorpion Pepper wings aren’t as spicy as you might think. The sauce is really nicely balanced here, so you won’t hand numb lips and watery facial orifices after eating. The meat is also insanely tender – almost as if they were stewed.

I also loved this salt fish hush puppy type things. Perfectly friend. Light and dense at the same time. Very satisfying.

These hibiscus sorrel lamb chops are as unique tasting as they are beautiful. A combination of earthy Indian and bright Latin/Caribbean spices that marry beautifully on tender, nicely cooked chops.

The real star of the show, though, is the coconut curry with oxtail and dumplings.

This was insane! The dumplings ate almost like Korean rice cakes, but a bit less chewy. Nice little logs of free-form dough, soaked with the rich, deep flavors of the curry. Delicious.

We will definitely be back here again. What a spot! The only negatives here: (1) all of our dishes came out at once, apps and entrees at the same time, and (2) the music is a bit loud if you’re seated inside. Go for dinner, stay for drinks!

OMAR’S KITCHEN
29A Clinton St
New York, NY 10002

Casa Adela

Casa Adela is a local Alphabet City Puerto Rican joint that serves up some really delicious and wallet-friendly food.

It’s been recommended to me by several people, and my wife and I finally made it over to try it out. Here’s a quick Ride & Review video of the experience:

We started with the chicken chicharrones, which were AWESOME, especially with that West Indian scotch bonnet and papaya hot sauce.

Next up was the oxtail stew. This was really flavorful, and the oxtail itself was incredibly tender without being dried out. It was legitimately perfect.

The pernil was juicy as well, with a nice strip of crispy, sticky, fatty skin on top. Amazing! That was my favorite bite of the meal, with the oxtail just behind it.

This, too, went nicely with the hot sauce.

Lastly, we had a half roast chicken. The same red spice used on the fried chicken skin is also used on the roasted skin. Whatever it is, it’s beautiful and delicious.

This place is cash only and they do not offer delivery, so I think I’ll be making many more trips here with the bike to pick up food in the future.

CASA ADELA
66 Avenue C
New York, NY 10009

Barrio Chino

My wife and I stopped in this little joint for dinner last week, and we really enjoyed it.

We started with aguachile verde and ceviche, both of which were great, although I would have preferred some additional tortilla chips to pick up all that tasty goodness.

For our mains, we ordered enchiladas verde and lamb barbacoa. Both were excellent, but the shredded, slow roasted lamb was amazing. So much rich, earthy flavor. Again, more tortillas would have made this perfect.

We will definitely be back here again – I need better pics!

BARRIO CHINO
253 Broome St
New York, NY 10002