Tag Archives: food

Gemma

I finally got to try some of the food at Gemma in the Bowery Hotel. Started with a delicious orecchiette pasta with broccoli rabe pesto and sweet Italian sausage.

Next up: beautiful burger with broiled cheddar on top.

My favorite dish was the Cornish hen. So flavorful!

And a really nicely cooked center cut New York strip steak.

We finished off with some pistachio cream cannoli.

Really great meal!

GEMMA
335 Bowery
New York, NY 10003

Great Jones Distilling

After trying their bourbon a few times and really enjoying it, I finally got over to Great Jones Distillery for some food and drinks.

My wife and I tried a flight of their spirits as well as their fancy burger.

The burger is topped with a bacon and bourbon jam, blue or cheddar cheese (we chose blue based on the waitress’ recommendation) and potato chips.

It was cooked perfectly, and the fries were good. However, we wish we picked cheddar since the blue sort of overpowered that bacon and bourbon jam. But otherwise it was good.

I’m a fan of their bourbon too, so we picked up a bottle on the way out. I’m looking forward to going back for a tour and a steak.

GREAT JONES DISTILLING CO
686 Broadway
New York, NY 10012

Bastard Burger at Bronx Brewery

My wife and I just tried Bastard Burger over at the new Bronx Brewery location in the east village.

The beer selection is great – a little something for everyone, as opposed to just non-stop shitty IPAs. We tried a cardamom ale, and a saison. Both were tasty.

The burger is quality as well. I’m not a huge fan of the stringy cheddar, but the patty, toppings, bun and sauce were all good.

The “Ziggy” fries are awesome. Crispy and well seasoned. I’d definitely eat here again.

BASTARD BURGER
64 2nd Ave
New York, NY 10003

Katz’s Delicatessen

I never got around to writing about Katz’s, because the last time I went was before I started this website. Now that I live closer, and since the good folks at Hendrick’s Gin sent me a $25 gift card along with some cool Katz’s swag like gin and juniper soaked pickles and an apron, it was time to go back.

Nothing has changed inside since my last visit, which was pre-2009, aside from some new pics of celebs on the wall. I was pleasantly surprised by the lack of a line at 6pm on a Friday. I thought it would be mobbed. My wife and I opted for waiter service. As soon as we sat, a nice platter of pickles came out. The tomatoes were the winner, oddly enough. I usually devour half sours like an animal!

We wanted to try more sandwiches, but we went with two fulls and one half. First up, the full sized tongue sandwich. This is served cold.

This was my least favorite of the three. The slices were too thick, and the meat wasn’t quite cooked properly. Too tough, too chewy, and too sinewy. Felt like it needed to be cooked lower and slower, so that everything became tender. As far as tongue goes, PJ Bernstein is the king. Without question.

Next up was the half sandwich of liverwurst. This was also served cold.

These thick slices of velvet deliciousness were very much welcomed after the tongue. This was great, and it was a lot of liverwurst for a half sandwich. Some of the best wurst I’ve had!

Last, and clearly the best of the three, was the combo pastrami + corned beef hot sandwich, full size.

In my prior visits, I recall not liking the pastrami so much. At times it was too fatty and sinewy as well, chewy as fuck with those hard ridges along the edge not rendering out properly. But this time it was perfect. And the corned beef was stellar; I’ll go with corned beef over pastrami any day of the week in most cases. But anyway, the sandwich was so juicy and tender, it really didn’t need any mustard.

I can’t wait to go back and try both the roast beef and the brisket. Those were the other two “must have” items that we just didn’t have the stomach space for on this trip. I feel like I rediscovered an old favorite in coming here. It definitely put a smile on my face. One critique I will give is that I think they can benefit from some improved rye bread. I realize it’s just a vehicle to deliver the meat, but I was expecting better.

KATZ’s DELICATESSEN
205 E Houston St
New York, NY 10002

Koko Ramen and Manchego

This joint has two names and serves two types of cuisine: Manchego serves tapas, and Koko serves ramen. My wife and I tried a couple of items from each menu.

TAPAS

The octopus was awesome. Perfectly cooked, nicely seasoned.

The calamari was meh. A little dried out.

RAMEN

The ramen was pretty good. Not among the top tier, but good enough that if I was ever in the area again, I’d go back to try the tonkotsu. The main reason I tried their spicy chicken miso ramen was because the menu said their tonkotsu was also chicken based broth, but with char siu pork in it. I was confused, and didn’t feel like asking questions since the service was crazy slow (they were slammed).

The salmon ramen was light. It was a shio style chicken based broth.

MANCHEGO / KOKO RAMEN
375 Marlborough Rd
Brooklyn, NY 11226

Handcraft Burgers & Brew

A buddy of mine helped open this joint over by Bryant Park, so I had to go check it out. The food here is excellent! Check out how perfect this burger looks:

That’s a handsome fella. And it was as delicious as it looks. Certified Angus Beef smash patties, shredded lettuce, sharp American cheese, and tomato on a brioche bun. The crust on those patties was perfect!

The chicken sandwich was great as well. Great spice to it.

As a tribute to Rutt’s Hut over in NJ, they also offer this ripper hot dog. It really hit the spot with a crispy snap.

And to top it off, the fries and tots were both golden and crunchy.

I highly recommend this place. The food is better than most other joints out there slinging smash patties now.

HANDCRAFT BURGERS & BREW
110 West 40th Street
New York, NY 10018

Joe Junior

This joint came highly recommended by a food reviewer and meat expert friend of mine, Nick Solares. He has waxed eloquent about the burger here many times!

It’s deceptively simple. Nick ordered it for me: Rare, simply seasoned with just salt, and seared on the plancha, with cheese melted on both sides of the bun.

I have to say, for under $8 (sans fries), this thing rivals many of our city’s great steakhouse burgers. They’re using real quality ground beef, and they certainly know how to cook it. Rare was warm to the touch in the center, but not much bleed out or drips on the plate. Impressive.

And total steal at that price point. Go give it a shot!

JOE JUNIOR
167 3rd Ave
New York, NY 10003

7th Street Burger

SMASH BURGER MADNESS!

The city has become inundated with smash burger joints, and I love it. They’re so fucking tasty – especially the ones here at 7th Street Burger.

I tried a double, and I really loved it. Greasy, messy, and delicious. I’ll be back for more, for sure.

7TH STREET BURGER
91 E 7th St
New York, NY 10009

Hancock Street

Last night I checked out the new joint from Mercer Street Hospitality Group (Lure Fishbar, Bowery Meat Company, etc.), Hancock Street. Everything was awesome, so let me get right into it.

APPS:

The sea urchin on crispy potato was a great bite to start the meal.

We followed this with an absolutely delicious steak tartare.

PASTA:

The squid ink linguine with calamari, crispy garlic, and sea beans was really unique and beautiful.

But the duck bolognese mafaldine was the better of the two.

SIDES:

Excellent fries!

I was even impressed with the veggies. Both the cauliflower and the carrots are worth your time. If I had to choose just one, I’d go with the cauliflower.

MAINS:

The short rib felt more like a grill or broil, or a very fast braise. I expected a more tender, pull-apart preparation. It was still tasty as hell though. 7/10.

The veal schnitzel was the best dish of the night. Amazing flavor profile with the capers and onions underneath, and a beautiful light and airy crisp on the breading. 10/10.

They overcooked the first steak that came out, but they made it right with a second one. It was really delicious, well seasoned, and came as a composed dish with a side of mushrooms. 8/10.

DESSERT:

The rhubarb crumble was a great finish to this great meal!

I would definitely go here again, and I recommend you go as well!

HANCOCK STREET
257 6th Avenue
New York, NY 10014

Dhamaka

My wife and I tried Dhamaka last night, using a gift certificate that our friends gave us as a housewarming.

We started with some of their delicious cocktails, and then moved right into some meaty apps. The first thing that came out was my favorite item of the meal – lamb ribs!

These had such awesome flavor and tenderness. The mint chutney that came with it is something they should sell by the jar!

Next up, smoked goat belly. This was cleverly presented in a tiny barrel smoker:

It was a bit too aggressive on the salt level, but over all we loved it. It was similar to some kofta / meatball skewer dishes that we’ve had.

These prawns were a little bit overcooked, as they were difficult to pull from the shell. They were spicy and really tasty, however. Especially the heads.

Our first main was the stewed mutton dish. They smush an entire bulb of roasted garlic into this, paper and all, so be prepared for dragon breath as well as picking garlic paper out of your bites of food! The dragon breath wasn’t so bad actually, but I wish they somehow removed the paper first.

Our other main was this delicious chicken and rice dish.

The chicken is bone-in, so the meat remains really juicy and tender. The ]rice reminded me of a really tasty, elevated rice-a-roni! Love that stuff.

That about covers it. We will definitely be eating here again!

Dhamaka
119 Delancey St
New York, NY 10002