First, check out the Ride & Review video of this joint!
Okay, now on to the written.
I heard about this place through a food friend, and it sounded enticing. I love tofu skin, for some weird reason, and this Korean style omakase features a majority of the pieces served upon fried tofu pockets called yubu tarts.
$75 gets you 13 high-quality pieces. See them all below, with my highlights for favorites.
Cacio e pepe.
Citrus cured bass.
Squid was swapped out for my wife, since she can’t do scallops.
Smoked duck breast pastrami – a top piece.
Shrimp – a top piece.
Ponzu salmon, everything spice with horseradish – my favorite.
Poached lobster – a top piece.
Beef tartare – a top piece.
Pork belly “ssamjang” – a top piece.
Tuna tataki hand roll – a top piece.
Crispy chicken on a stick.
Sea salt + earl grey tea ice cream.
I would definitely do this omakase again. It was good!
Olly Olly Market
601 West 26th Street
New York, NY 10001
Albert’s is a fancy bar that just opened up near Grand Central that features some really nice cocktails and a killer menu. I highly recommend the Salt & Pepper Martini, which is made with celery salt and sun dried tomato -infused vodka.
This joint is brought to you by the folks behind the great upper east side spot The Penrose, so I didn’t expect any slack!
I stopped by one Friday after work to meet my wife for a drink, but we ended up ordering their jojo fries, and their t-bone for two, which is a dry-aged 35oz beast that also comes with two sides for $150. What a deal!
We went with the lemon and walnut crispy Brussels and the spatzl “mac” and cheese. Both were incredible!
The steak itself was an easy 8/10. It had mild aged flavor, but it ws cooked to a perfect medium rare with a great, deep golden brown crust all over.
I’ll definitely be back to try the tartare, the strip steak frites, and the burger.
Shikku is a small, elegant sushi counter inside the Tin Building down by the seaport. I took my wife here for an early Valentine’s Day dinner, since she likes omakase meals. Check out the Ride & Review video HERE:
The meal started with this sashimi salad. Very light, crisp and refreshing due to the avocado sauce on there.
Next, another sashimi salad of sorts, this one made even better by the presence of ikura, uni and shrimp.
Next up was six pieces of nigiri. All were delicious, but the otoro (fatty tuna belly) was my favorite.
This hand roll was awesome! Probably my favorite part of the meal.
Or perhaps this sliced A5 wagyu rib eye from Miyazaki was my favorite?
Either way, it was a great meal, finished off with a surprisingly rich miso soup, and a blackberry and chocolate mousse heart.
I would definitely go back here again. This was one of the better omakase meals we’ve had.
First, check out this quick Ride & Review video HERE:
I had no idea what to expect when I came here. I had never really had Austrian food before, other than the similarities that overlap with German cuisine. I was blown away by the quality and flavor of everything here.
My wife and I started with some drinks. I stuck with beer, because, well, Austria! My wife had this really amazing apple, cinnamon and beet juice cocktail called Mary’s Secret that was really incredible.
We started with the fried hen of the woods mushrooms, which were perfectly cooked and crispy all around. I loved these.
Next up: the Austrian veal and pork meatballs. WOW! These were served with a mushroom gravy and crispy sunchokes. AMAZING!
The burger, while a bit salty, was really deliciously crafted. The patty was a loose blend of hanger and brisket which stayed tender and juice from end to end.
The bacon and house made mayo, combined with a well-seasoned patty and some melty cheddar, just kicked the salt levels up a bit too much. But I really did enjoy this burger.
The burger also came with herb fries and a dup of really nice dips: a house made ketchup, which ate more like a dark, horseradish based steak sauce (delicious), and dijonnaise.
We also ordered the pork schnitzel, which was easily the best schnitzel I’ve had.
It came with a trio of miniature sides: cucumbers in a creamy yogurt type sauce, muddled lingonberry jam, and potato salad. These, along with the lightly dressed greens, made for a very generously sized entree at just $32.
For dessert, The Royal Nussbaum (spiked hot chocolates) and a really well crafted apple strudel with schlag and creamy vanilla ice cream.
I will definitely be back here again to try more of the menu, specifically the spaetzle and pates.
The restaurant takes over the space formerly held by Landmarc inside The Shops at the Time Warner Center in Columbus Circle.
They’re serving up really nice, innovative cocktails in a chic, eclectically decorated bar.
The menu is decidedly Roman in it’s inspiration, with pasta dishes that feature cacio e pepe and alla gricia stylings. The pasta shapes are also slightly off the beaten path, with garganelli, cappalletti and mafaldine in the mix. We went with the cappelletti bistecca, which was filled with what tasted like tender short rib and topped with a delicious 20yr balsamic.
For starters, we tried the chilled artichoke. It was simply steamed and served with two sauces; a cream sauce and an Italian inspired chimichurri of sorts. A very light starter.
The real stars of our starters were these porchetta style baby back ribs. They had great texture and bite, and the flavors were nicely balanced between savory, sweet and acidic/bitter. We loved these.
For the main courses here, you won’t find a heavy steak selection like at other Quality Branded restaurants. The main reason is that there’s competition inside the Time Warner Center with Porter House Bar & Grill. Bad Roman limits their steak selection to only the filet (mind you, it can be prepared four different ways). But Bad Roman does really well with their other meat selections, like a pork shoulder chop, a veal milanese, and this massive veal shank osso buco with hand ripped and pinch-folded pappardelle pasta.
At $125, this is meant for two people (possibly even four if everyone were to get their own starter). This was a special, so if it interests you in any way, book your table now before it gets swapped out for something new!
Desserts were fun as well, with a deconstructed cannoli (like chips and dip), as well as a lemon cheesecake inside of a chocolate lemon shaped shell!
I will definitely be going back here to try more of the menu. Congratulations to Quality Branded on this new opening, and congratulations to my buddy Gaetano, who is running the joint. I met him way back when I first started reviewing steakhouses, probably in 2012 or 2013, at Quality Italian. He’s come a long way, and he’s done such great things for the restaurant group. I’m a proud fan!
10 Columbus Cir.
New York, NY 10019
My wife and I went to Down and Out in the East Village to try their crazy “double dozens” oyster happy hour. They currently offer two varieties of oysters for $1.50ea, but when you order a dozen, you get a second dozen for free. Essentially, they’re $0.75ea, which is the cheapest I’ve seen them in town!
We tried both the Kusshi (small ones, west coast of Canada) and Glidden Point (pictured above). My wife preferred the Kusshi, and I liked the ones from Glidden Point.
We also tried their “oyster pan roast,” which is a really nice bisque-like oyster and potato soup. It might not be much to look at in the photo, but I assure you it was delicious!
We also got down on their blue claw crab cake sandwich, which was nice and tasty, topped with a home made slaw.
They also serve a lot of high end canned fish items, like these sardines.
Their deviled quail eggs are good too. These come eight pieces per order.
Lots of these food items are discounted at happy hour, like the oysters. The happy hour runs daily from 4pm-7pm, and they also offer two different beers for $3, as well as discounted cocktails.
Most notable about this place, however, is the great whiskey selection, which includes some very rare, vintage bottles that the owner/bartender Josh secured from various estate sales.
He gave us some samples of a few really nice old bottles, like that Canadian Club from 1940! Soon there will be an entire separate menu of vintage whiskeys here, which will nearly double the current selection of whiskey on the menu. Stay tuned!
Cornelius is a new French and American style joint in Grand Central. My wife and I came in to give it a try, as the menu looked pretty incredible.
We started with some cocktails, all of which were killer. My favorites were the Sazerac (not pictured) and the caviar martini. If you have some time before you start to eat, grab the espresso old fashioned. That also works well with dessert too though.
We started with this foie gras terrine, which wasn’t on the menu. This is basically delicious meat butter, and it would also pair well with their cheese plate. We had that for dessert.
Next up was the beef tartare. This is made from hand cut prime tenderloin, but the bump of caviar is extra/not standard. I really loved this, and it’s definitely large enough to eat as a main course.
We shared this beautiful 28oz, 30-day dry aged NY strip/shell steak on the bone.
The sauce is a velvety and mild Hollandaise, and draped over the bone is a nice portion of sautéed broccoli rabe. On top, shaved Perigord black truffle. 9/10 – very tender, well rested, and great aged flavor coming through on that evenly browned crust.
Of course we didn’t stop there. These two dishes were both beautiful and well executed, but the winner of the night goes to the duck leg confit. The lamb collops of tenderloin were perfect, it’s just that the duck was masterfully prepared, The meat was so tender and well seasoned/balanced. And with a huge bed of lentils underneath, it was filling as well. Make sure you order that!
For dessert, along with the cheese plate up above, we had these incredible dolce de leche donuts. WOW! I was actually shoving some of the currant jelly into the hole to make them even more decadent.
This place is crazy good, and I really can’t wait to go back to try the chateaubriand for two and a few other items that look great.
First, check out my Ride and Review video of this joint.
Aight, let’s get into it.
Rumor has it, a former partner from Shorty’s struck out on his own after some creative differences. Behold, the birth of Olde City – in fact, Olde City has taken over this former Shorty’s space on Madison Avenue. While it may seem redundant, it isn’t. Shorty’s has gone downhill lately, and Olde City is better than Shorty’s ever was.
Here’s what we tried:
Authentic Philly Cheese – wiz wit. Absolutely delicious. I was almost going to add some American cheese to this, but I think the move for me next time will be “extra wiz.”
Roast Pork – my favorite item of the meal.
Slow cooked to perfection and thinly sliced, the pork is melt-in-your-mouth. Best paired with provolone cheese to contrast with the brightness of the broccoli rabe. I went for many dips into the au jus.
Mango Habanero Chicken Philly Cheese, with ghost pepper jack cheese. I was dead set on trying something different. This was really nice.
Contrary to what you might expect, I actually love chicken Philly cheesesteaks. Nevertheless, this one came in third behind the other two sandwiches.
We also had the Old Bay dry rub wings – a crispy hit!
Italian fries and beer battered onion rings rounded out the sides.
And, of course, great beer selection.
I’m a huge fan of this place, so I hope to be back to try their burgers and other sandwiches as well.
I took my wife to Ume for her birthday. This place serves an Omakase set of 12 pieces for $73.
Everything is really delicious, but my favorite three bites were the red snapper (center, with broccoli florette), the fatty tuna belly, (bottom center, with truffle) and the quail egg with crispy fish skin (center right).
We also grabbed this “literally everything don” bowl, which was better than the actual omakase (and more killing) for just $60.
Really enjoyed that.
A few negative things to note here: the enclosed outdoor garden area is too cold for winter dining. They leave the door open between the inside area and the garden, so even if you’re sitting inside, you’re going to be cold. To make matters worse, they double down on that chill factor with their “no shoes” concept (my toes were icy). Sitting on the floor isn’t too comfortable either but I’m not really gonna complain about that. I didn’t mind it so much.