For those who are visiting NYC I wanted to write a short spiel on some of the amazing places that GG and I recently visited on our honeymoon. The first week of our holiday was in New York and then we spent a few days there at the end. There’s a few pics on this post, but there’s plenty more on the PerthMunchkin facebook page.
It’s an incredible city, where foodies are spoilt for choice. We thoroughly enjoyed our time there
Tom’s Restaurant: For any Seinfeld fans out there, the is a choice spot for breakfast! The familiar facade that you had seen for all those seasons of adventures with Jerry, Elaine, George and Kramer. We couldn’t not visit! Sure it doesn’t look like the show, but the walls are adorned with newspaper articles about the series and different stories about the history of the restaurant. We only visited Tom’s for breakfast, on two occasions and the popular choice on both visits was the Lumberjack. For the bargain price of $9.00 you get Two pancakes, two eggs any style, one sausage, two strips of bacon and toast, along with coffee and juice. It is incredibly filling and really tasty and it also gives you the opportunity to discuss your favourite Seinfeld episodes at length….. or relive a few choice moments…. like the final episode, when we discussed if we should give the people behind us the ketchup….. ahh hilarious. A quality breakie choice we found (and can I add that the silver dollar pancakes are also very tasty!).
Eataly: We visited Eataly twice and I must say it is an incredible place, easily one of my favourites that we visited. Basically its set in this beautiful big building and its sort of like a market place. It’s divided into different sections. You’ve got your coffee and gelati and different pastries. Then there’s pizza, pasta, antipasti, fresh fish, meat….. the list goes on. It’s incredible. Everything looks fabulously fresh and it’s hard to know where to park yourself and indulge, because seriously everything looks great. On our first visit we headed upstairs to the Beer Garden. It had this wonderful chilled vibe and was a delightful shady refuge from the sun. If you fancy a delicious meal and the chance to sample more than a few of their brews, then upstairs is for you. And the food really was top notch!
On our second visit we decided we’d wait for a table in the highly sought after pizza and pasta section. There was around a 15/20 minute wait before we could head to carb central so before hand we took advantage of the antipasto section, where service is swift and the food is amazing. We went for a glass of vino each and a serve of the 14 Month Proscuitto de Parma, 18-Month old Parmigaino Reggiano and Fresh Melon ($16). Quite possibly the best way to fill time. We then moved onto the pizza and pasta section. Everything was fresh and so full of flavour. I preferred the pasta over the pizza, but still, the pizza wasn’t bad, hard to mess up a Margherita, it’s classic – mozzarella, tomato sauce and fresh basil.
You gotta visit Eataly if you are in NYC…. so many options – keeps everyone happy!
Daniel: Now Daniel had been the restaurant that both GG and I had been most excited about…. perhaps because of the combination of their collection of Michelan stars and also the price tag for their tasting dinner. So to say we had high expectations for our meal here was perhaps an understatement. We expected our socks to be blown off, we were chasing a relatively high element of wow. Now the food was delicious and both well prepared and beautifully plated, but it lacked the wow. Can’t fault the service either, but given the price we both left feeling fairly disappointed. It was supposed to be the best meal of our life and it fell short.
The Dutch: A friend had given us a list of places that her friend had recommended to her and The Dutch was on the list. It also was on the list of places that were participating in the summer New York restaurant week. We decided that since we’d be in the Soho area that we would aim to be at this fine establishment for our lunch. It was a really cool place. Interesting menu, refreshing cocktails after a morning shopping and in all, well worth a visit. I had a really nice pasta dish, Orecchiette, Benton’s Bacon, sweet corn, sungold tomato - and GG thoroughly enjoyed his steak sandwich – complete with its smoked brisket, texas toast and vinehared onions. If you know you’ll be nearby and are in need to sustinance, head here!
The Perfect Pint: Our experience with the Perfect Pint was right up the top in their rooftop bar. I have high praise for the range of beer they have on offer and also the tasty snacks they have available. I only ended up at this place at the suggestion of a friend, a local new yorker and we had a thoroughly good time. Especially the wings – yum! Love that they are always teamed with blue cheese sauce! If you fancy a sky high view of the city with a beer in hand, its a nice, casual spot.
Eleven Park Madison: Number one. This was our number one meal in NYC. It wowed us in every way. The polished service, the incredibly wonderful food, everything about it. It was an experience. Our ultimate eating experience. We went for lunch and opted for the tasting menu with matched vino. The menu was a journey and definitely one to be undertaken when you have a good appetite! There are an abundance of courses and each one is a sheer delight. Granted, it isn’t a cheap experience but if you are looking for a meal that takes your breath away then this is where to head. Sublime, just so sublime.
Five Guys Burgers: GG and my first visit to Five Guys was back in 2010 in Washington. We spied another store in Times Square so this was a popular option for GG’s dinner one night. They are burgers, just jammed packed with flavoursome fun and along with a side of hand cut fries, it’s quite the winning combination. The added bonus with dining in a Five Guys is that you can help yourself to peanuts! A popular choice as you look at the shells strewn about the place. It’s a fun spot with more than decent burgers.
Grays Papaya Hotdogs: I’ll admit that I wanted to try these hot dogs because I’d seen them in tv shows and in movies. I went for a fairly plain hotdog, just with ketchup but GG went for a with the lot – chilli, relish, etc. They are good dogs
PJ Clarke’s: Another restaurant we wound up at because we’d heard good things from someone else. After going I heard that it received several mentions in Mad Men, which is one of GG and my favourites. It’s all very old school bar/steak house. We actually wandered in after trapsing about in the rain for about half an hour. So there’s a plus, they will seat you if you are sporting drowned rate chique. The food also was very pleasant. Sure, it might seem like another day, another burger, but these ones were good. Delicious patties. A solid suggestion if you are near Lincoln Centre.
Torrisi NYC: We visited Torrisi because I read about it in Gourmet Traveller. They do fancy gourmet sandwiches during the day but at night it’s a 16 seat restaurant. So yes, incredibly quaint and cosy. You almost feel like you are a guest in someone’s home. They offer a $65 menu which starts with some very tasty antipasti, followed by a pasta dish, an entree and then a cookie plate to share. Everything was entirely delicious and there’s an option to add a very tasty extra like oysters, which I now like. They are amazing. Worth a visit! (but turn off your flash :)).
Corner Bistro: This was a place that someone had told us about, as having sort of a down and dirty, local bar vibe, but who made amazing, juicy, get your hands messy burgers. We went, we burgered, we agreed. They are very tasty, reasonably priced and great fries. Felt all very authentic New York bar!
The Standard: A friend had told me about this place and as we were wandering around the Meatpacking District it was totally by chance that we happened upon it. They have this totally great German beer garden and on a sunny day its just a delight to munch on a pretzel and partake in a German ale. While we were there they had the Olympics up on the big screen. It’s all very chilled. The Standard is actually a hotel, so there is also a restaurant as part of the complex, which was buzzing with brunchers. Very cool spot!
Gramercy Tavern: This was another place that I had heard about from a friend and then I subsequently googled and saw the numerous accolades that this place had won in recent times and was all the more excited about heading along. It’s broken up into the tavern and the restaurant. We went twice and sat in the tavern on both visits, once for lunch and once for dinner. It was sort of farmhouse chique inside to me. Plenty of big pots of beautiful flowers and greenery and brightly coloured murales painted on the walls. Loved it! You can either order a set tasting menu or al a carte. We opted for al a carte and for the high quality, delicious fresh produce the prices were very reasonable. The service was also very good. On our first visit I didn’t particularly enjoy my mains It was a pasta dish, had a bit too much cheese, but on seeing my ‘finished’ plate, with not too much of a dent put in it, they took that item off our bill. Very classy. Our second visit I enjoyed everything! Especially the desserts – they were a vision! Especially the Ricotta Cheesecake, Fudge Brownie and Raspberry Sorbet. An entirely polished dining experience. Very enjoyable.
The Spotted Pig: A hot tip on a choice locale for a Sunday brunch in the West Village. We knew doors swung open at 11am so we joined the line that had formed outside the door before this time and were ushered inside and before too long we were taken to a table. There were literally pigs everywhere - it was kitchy and adorable. I had wanted to go there and soon as I read Deep Fried Poached Eggs with Chorizo Stew on the menu. I mean don’t they sound intriguing! They are both intriguing and delicious!! And a cocktail with eggs – what a treat!! Felt all very trendy – great spot for a long, lazy breakfast.
Buddakan: For Sex and the City fans, this place is a must visit. Featured in the movie where Big and Carrie have their rehersal dinner. It is a stunning venue and their asian fusion menu is seriously sensational. It’s a menu designed to be shared and we did just that, with many of their small dishes. The boneless ribs were incredibly delicious!! Loved them to bits, we had them on both of our two visits. Also the potstickers. And the desserts! My pick is definitely the Crying Chocolate - melted chocolate ganace, milk caramel with jasmine tea ice. The place really just oozes cool. Don your heels and a pretty frock and sashay your way into Buddakan for a bite. Great spot!
Alta: Back into 2010 GG and I first went to New York and while we were there we happened upon this really incredible tapas place in Greenwich. It had some very memorable sangria. The best we’d ever had. The only problem was that when we rocked into town in 2012 do you think we could remember the name of the place!! I was so disappointed that we wouldn’t get to go back. On our second last night in New York we decided we still wanted some Greenwich tapas wherever it was that we headed. So I headed to the New York Urbanspoon page and looked for restaurants that fit the bill. Would you believe that by some Christmas miracle we wound up in the same street and the same restaurant as last time. I was so sublimely happy when we walked in and realised. They have either red or white sangria that is the most refreshing deadly wonder that you’ll ever have! The tapas list is incredible extensive and basically I wanted everything. A few we tried that night were Agave Glazed Chicken Wings, Roasted Pork Belly Confit, Pulled Pork Empanadas – so good!! I really loved everything we have, it totally lived up to our memory from two years before. For amazing, creative tapas – come here!!
Thank you New York – Hope to see you again soon!