NYC eating…

I had a chance to spend some time in NYC with fellow eater recently.  Now that I’m a few pounds heavier and it’s harder to get up from my couch, I wanted to share with you what we ate.

We returned to an old favorite, ABC Kitchen, for “brunch”.  For the record, I don’t love brunch because I’m an early riser and I can’t wait until 11 or even 10 am to feed.  On this particular day, I had a proper breakfast at home around 7, and our “brunch” reservation was for noon, so it worked out perfectly.

As usual, the restaurant looked great.  It’s probably the prettiest restaurant I’ve ever eaten at, just because of the unusual decor.  I ordered my usual roasted carrot and avocado salad, and the mushroom and parmesan pizza with farm egg.  FE ordered the akaushi cheeseburger with a side salad instead of fries.  Unfortunately, the kitchen had a fire that morning and the fryer was out of order.  Regardless, the food was terrific.

We then stopped at Eataly so that FE could pick up some supplies.  Fortunately, we remembered to bring an empty suitcase so we could haul all of his pasta purchases back home.

Dinner was at a new place for us recommended by a co-worker called Upland.  It’s a newer Stephen Starr restaurant located on 26th just east of Park.  The space is beautiful – both classy and casual at the same time.  The food was spectacular but we did have a service snafu.  The manager remedied the situation and it appeared to be an unusual occurrence.  I thoroughly enjoyed the octopus with pesto, bucatini cacio e pepe, and hazelnut budino.

Our best meal of the trip was probably brunch the next day.  Due to my hunger concerns, FE and I had a pre-brunch breakfast sandwich at Treehaus (51st and 3rd).  It seems to be a place with healthier options, and I really enjoyed my whole wheat toast with egg, fontina, and avocado.

Of course, I was still hungry for brunch at 11:15.  We returned to an old favorite that has relocated and remodeled.  I’ve been stalking its return for over a year, and finally it’s open.  It is Danny Meyer’s Union Square Cafe.  FE and I ate at the old location several times, on recommendation of my same co-worker mentioned above.  Apparently, the restaurant lost its lease at the old location and had to relocate a few blocks away to 19th and Park.

The new space is similar to the old one, but more modern.  It’s a beautiful, open, two story loft room.  Our server was delightful and seemed truly happy to be there.  This restaurant was reopened as a no-tipping establishment.  The prices are a bit higher but Mr. Meyers provides a decent wage and benefits to all of the employees.  The prices are not for the faint of heart but hey, this is NYC and the restaurant is worth it.

I had the tortellini in brodo, which is chicken tortellini in broth.  The pasta is homemade and you can tell.  This was a little bowl of heaven.  FE had the pappardelle with rabbit ragu and he was very pleased.  I ended the meal with a piece of the chocolate espresso pie, which was delicious.

 

NYC eating…

NYC eating…

So I returned to NYC for a sweltering day of eating.  This would usually be followed with a ton of walking around but alas, the walking was curtailed by the oppressive heat.  I actually used an umbrella!

It was time to return to the usual NYC haunts which did not disappoint.  First up was Lupa for lunch.  Fellow eater and I love getting to Lupa early for the first round of pasta for the day.  It just tastes better!  We decided to go for the five course pasta tasting menu.  It was a great decision except for the total overload of carbs.  We enjoyed the tonnarelli cache e pepe, the saltimbocca ravioli, and the bucatini all’amatriciana the most.

The tonnarelli was a delicious blend of pecorino and parmigiano, and a heavy dose of black pepper.  Perfect flavors for a small plate!  The ravioli was stuffed with veal, prosciutto, mascarpone, pecorino, and parmigiano, and served with prosciutto breadcrumbs and sage butter.  Another small plate of deliciousness.

The tasting menu came with a peach sorbet at the end.  It was surprisingly tasty and especially welcome on such a warm day.

Our second stop was ABC Kitchen for dinner.  Fellow eater and I shared the Akaushi burger and the mushroom, parmesan, and farm egg pizza.  I know, we always order the same dishes but where else can I eat these?  We were so stuffed we didn’t even need an appetizer or dessert.

I’m already planning our return visit.  Happy eating!

NYC eating…

NYC eating…

So I spent a day in NYC recently and I wanted to share some great eats I had there.  Sorry, no Statue of Liberty, no Empire State Building, no Times Square, just eating!

It was a beautiful weekday in NYC when my fellow eater and I embarked on our food odyssey.  We began with lunch at Mario Batali’s Lupa in Greenwich Village. This is an old standby of ours that we’ve been going to for many years, on the recommendation of a co-worker of mine.  I prefer having lunch here over dinner, especially when we can get there by noon and have the first dishes of the day.

I went with my normal spaghetti with pomodoro, which was great.  I only deviated from this order one time in all the years I’ve eaten here and it was a mistake I won’t repeat.  The basil flavor really comes through such a simple dish.  They provide great focaccia bread with olive oil to start.  We split the veal saltimbocca which is always terrific (and I don’t even like veal or prosciutto, or as some say “projut”).  I declined dessert because I was just too full and I wanted to keep my options open for later.

Fellow eater and I each scored a free coffee/tea due to our loyalty cards from our respective favorite establishments and walked to Eataly.  It was a nice walk through Washington Square straight up to the Flatiron.  Eataly wasn’t insanely crowded since it was a weekday. My fellow eater actually shops for groceries at Eataly unlike most of the tourists who come in to gawk and get in our way, so we did our shopping and left.  They have a great selection of imported pasta, rice, and other delicacies that are difficult to find.  The challenge is schlepping it all back to the hotel 1/2 mile away, but we managed.

Then it was time for the crown jewel of the day – our dinner at ABC Kitchen.  For those of you who don’t know, ABC is one of the hottest restaurants in NYC and notoriously difficult to get into, especially on a weekend night.  We planned ahead and were able to get a reservation.  As usual, the meal was phenomenal.  We split the fried calamari appetizer, which came with a marinara sauce and a horseradish-type sauce, both of which were very tasty.  We also split the Akashi cheeseburger (spelling?) and the mushroom and farm egg pizza.  Even though I was full, I ordered the chocolate mint sorbet which was excellent.  Fellow eater was able to convince our server to let him buy only one of the three donuts offered in the trio of donuts since he was full.  Overall, the meal was stellar.  We’re already planning our next visit.

NYC eating…