Tag Archives: food

Gouie

This new sushi counter at Essex Market / The Market Line offers a fairly reasonable sushi dinner that consists of 8 pieces, a hand roll, ikura with rice and uni with rice – all for $85.

I usually love hand rolls, but I didn’t really enjoy this one. I think it was a mix of the Japanese pickle and a too thick/chewy seaweed wrapper.

The sushi pieces were great though, as was the ride. But the real star of the show was this salad that we ordered as a special. It was basically sashimi with some nice veggies.

Pass on the cauliflower, crab, uni and okra cold “soup” that they have on special as well. It was slimy and not soup-like at all. It also needed seasoning.

The light cocktails are a hit. There’s no hard liquor, but they’re made with apertifs, liqueurs and digestifs.

GOUIE
115 Delancey St.
New York, NY 10002

Essex Pearl

This place is incredible!

My wife and I have been dying to come here ever since we saw them setting up shop at Market Line soon after we moved in. It’s a beautiful seafood bar, done up really fancy as a place you’d love to just sit and have a cocktail, but also with open view to the kitchen and prep stations for all the delicious food.

We tried a lot of shit, so let me get right into it.

Raw littleneck clams topped with crispy shallots and a fish sauce mignonette. Perfect way to open up the meal. Pair this with their pickled ginger, shochu and gin martini.

Dry aged rib eye tartare, coarse cut. So tender and flavorful! The shrimp chips make for a perfect vehicle for mouth entry, and they add a great textural crunch.

Cumin lamb belly skewers. I really loved these. If you love cumin lamb noodles at places like Xian Famous, you need to try this. It’s LAMB BACON!

Tiger prawns. You’ll want to drink the sauce! This item was the whole reason my wife wanted to go, and it really delivered. It was her favorite dish (along with the hamachi collar).

Crispy baby octopus with Thai lemongrass curry and fried Thai basil. Ask for a small bowl of rice so none of that curry goes to waste!

The grilled pork jowls were next. This was probably my favorite of the meal. It comes with a lime pepper sauce that acts like a Carolina style vinegar BBQ sauce, almost, but Asian style as lime and pepper are common in places like Vietnam and Cambodia. It cuts the fat of the jowls so perfectly I can’t even describe it properly!

Turmeric dill hamachi collar. This is so delicious and large, it’s enough to share among two people. Light, flavorful, and amazingly aromatic.

Laotian ginger pork sausage over garlic noodles. WOW! The sausage is made in house and it’s so fucking good!

We washed it all down with this watermelon and lychee slushee. So refreshing and just the right amount of natural sweetness.

I can’t wait to go back and try the rest of the menu, especially their surf and turf!

ESSEX PEARL
88 Essex Street
Cellar Level
New York, NY 10002

Carla

I stopped in here with some of the guys from the Zooz electric bike club (for $150 off your bike, use code JOHNNYPRIME at www.zoozbikes.com).

We sat outside, but then it started pouring, so we went inside. The place was nice enough to let us put our bikes into their covered outdoor seating area to stay dry.

Anyway, I tried their burger. I wasn’t crazy about the pickled cabbage on it, but the rest was great. The waffle fries were perfectly crispy with a good spice seasoning on it, like Old Bay/cajun. The egg is unnecessary, but it didn’t make it sloppy or anything. Good crispy bacon, which I broke up a little bit for neater coverage.

I would definitely eat here again if I was in the area. The service was excellent, and the menu was unique. In particular, I’d like to try their pho and banh mi sandwich.

CARLA
2503 40th Ave
Queens, NY 11101

Emilia by Nai

Once again my friend Ruben absolutely nails it with his third restaurant, Emilia. Check out this quick video of some of the dishes we tried:

I can’t wait to go back and try more stuff. He is still in the process of perfecting the burger (he’s working on the bun), so I’ll definitely try that again.

Favorite items so far: artichoke with soy cured egg and crispy sunchokes, red snapper, and monkfish liver mousse.

EMILIA BY NAI
174 1st Ave.
New York, NY 10009

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