eat. shop. love. nyc.


ƎVIL TWIИ
March 9, 2012, 12:12 pm
Filed under: Do, Drink | Tags: , , , ,
You pay your rent. You go to work everyday. You’re faithful to your boyfriend/ girlfriend. You visit your grandma in Boca. You’re a good person. And you’re tired of being good.
Enter Evil Twin, a new monthly party where you throw your inhibitions to the wind and get stupid. Basically you come to the party as your own evil twin. If you like to wear white shirts, wear black. If you like to wear black shirts, wear no shirt. If you like to drink beer, drink gin. If you like to drink gin, take ketamine.We play the music, a mix of evil hop-hop and dark and menacing dance music. A bass-heavy backdrop for you to lose yourself and make decisions that would appall your normal self. We will have a live video artist with an evil instrument used for projecting graphic videos. They may include but are not limited to depictions of sex, drugs, and taking drugs while having sex.

Admission and booze are cheap to facilitate evil behavior. Facial disguises are encouraged so colleagues and classmates can’t implicate you. If you are evil and have already killed your good twin, you can come as your extra evil triplet$5 Sailor Jerry dark & stormy drink specials will be served at the bar from open to close to help facilitate the release of your inner evil twin.

Specifics:
When: Friday, March 9, 10pm-late
Where: Evil Loft, 70 North 6th Street, Williamsburg BK. (unmarked door btw Cubana Social and WHM)
How Much: $5
RSVP Here.



Korean-style shabu shabu kalguksu
January 6, 2012, 12:13 pm
Filed under: Eat | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Korean-style shabu shabu kalguksu

One of the Korean dishes I miss most from my days in Seoul is “shabu shabu kalguksu,” a Korean spin on Japanese shabu shabu hotpot that involves knife-cut noodles and a spicy leek and potato broth. See excerpt from Eyes in Korea below (and click through the link for more mouth-watering photos and descriptions).

Korean Shabu Kalguksu

My overview of Korean food continues and our target today isshabu kalguksu or chopped noodles.Shabu kalguksu is a very popular dish in Korea. Some people think it is a Japanese cuisine according to the name “shabu”, which is a Japanese word. Others say it is similar to Mongolian Genghis Khan’s meal. Some Koreans also say it is “toryeom” meal originated in Korea. As it often happens, nobody knows the real story for sure, so let’s concentrate on the dish itself.

I often go with my friends to Doul Shabu Kalguksu restaurant which is our favorite spot in Daejeon. Usually we order seafood kalguksu. The ingredients of the shabu kalguksuinclude seafoods, meat, vegetables, mushrooms, noodles and rice with eggs. Furthermore there are many side dishes served at the table.

New York has a Koreatown, so why can’t I find my shabu shabu kalguksu here?!? I may, however, have found a passable alternative at Arirang (my favorite NYC spot for kalguksu, sujaebi, and kimchi jeon) – the chicken shabu kalguksu. I’m checking it out on Monday evening as it purported feeds 3-4 people – which means it probably feeds 6 with sides and apps. I will report back shortly.



$16 pitchers and da bomb veggie burger at Korzo Haus
September 4, 2011, 10:13 am
Filed under: Drink, Eat | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

It makes me sad when cool neighborhood spots don’t get as much business as they deserve. It’s always a struggle, right? You want them to get a steady flow of business, but you also don’t want the place to get so busy that you have to wait for a table. Korzo Haus is just such a place. With its ever-changing daily seasonal menu, its locally-sourced grass-fed beef burgers, and its $16 pitchers of custom-brewed organic ale, it’s a wonder there isn’t a line out the door for this place on the regular.

Halušky with bryndza (Slovak feta cheese), crispy bacon bits, and chives ($6). A glorious eastern take on European mac’n’cheese. Or a Slovak feta spaetzle. Whatever makes it make sense for you. Quite rich, so good for sharing.

The Wunderwurst platter ($11.50). Not the prettiest wieners I’ve seen, but they certainly did the trick. (Badum-ching!) Hot and juicy, served with two types of mustard, housemade sauerkraut, and pickled something I can’t seem to remember.

The Haus Vegi on the night of July 7th was the best veggie burger I’ve had in my life. While Korzo Haus prides itself on using 100% grass-fed and finished Black Angus Beef from the sustainable and animal welfare approved Grazin’ Angus Acres in Ghent, New York, we opted to try the delicious-sounding veggie burger instead: walnut and black-eyed pea patty, edam cheese, caramelized onions, pickled something, and dressed greens on a made-to-order Langoš (Hungarian fried bread) bun ($11.50). The veggie burger option at KH changes based on what’s fresh at the farmer’s market, but they subscribe to an open source menu philosophy – tell Steve you really want to try this burger and let’s hope they make this a regular menu item.

A lingering dinner for 3 including some damn good beer came to $22 per person. Not bad, I say, for a dinner in a rustic little EV joint with a friendly staff and, wait, let me say it again: $16 pitchers of GOOD beer EVERY NIGHT.

Between 3-7 pm Monday through Thursday, they do a $12 burger and beer special. After you finish your free beer, you can share a pitcher with friends to make a happy belly even happier.

Eat/drink/be merry: Korzo Haus (East Village/ABCity) 178 East 7th Street, 10009. (212)-780-0181. Follow @KorzoHaus.



Bianca NYC: it’s like having your own Italian grandma
August 23, 2011, 10:35 am
Filed under: Eat | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Or a mini army of little Italian grandmas in the inimate, white-paneled, rustic shabby-chic candlelight that is Bianca. In reality, I’m pretty sure the kitchen at Bianca is manned by a bevy of super talented and hardworking Ecuadorians under the direction of Emilia-Romagna native and chef-owner Giancarlo Quaddalti, but I like the imagery of some sweet Italian nonna hand-shaping meatballs and whipping up a mean red sauce next to a blazing fire.

Bianca was one of the very first restaurants I checked out upon moving to New York City in 2008. It’s good, honest Italian food, nothing fancy or pretentious about it. Since then, it has remained a stalwart of my delight-your-out-of-town-guests-and-prove-living-in-NYC-can-be-affordable-to-non-believers arsenal. Nothing on the menu costs more than $15 and there are a couple bottles of wine for less than $30, so it’s especially great if you’re looking to watch what you’re spending without sacrificing ambiance or quality of food.

My go-tos at Bianca are the gnocco fritto with charcuterie (fried dough puffs with stuff-it-yourself cured meats – $9) and the insalata carciofini (artichoke salad – $8.50) to start, the tagliatelle alla bolognese (tagliatelli pasta with meat sauce – $9.50) and the straccetti di manzo (thinly sliced pan-seared filet mignon with rosemary potatoes – $15) as mains, and the tortino di cioccolata (chocolate mousse cake with dark chocolate ganache – $6.50) and the tiramisu ($6.50) for dessert. You also cannot possibly go wrong with any of their pasta specials of the day.

The artichoke salad (above) is a salad of julienned raw artichoke that’s been marinated in olive oil, lemon, salt, and pepper, topped with thin slices of shaved parmigiano reggiano cheese. I’ve never had anything quite like it before, but apparently it is a dish common in central Italy in the winter when winter artichokes are abundant. I found a great recipe for the salad on Aglio, Olio e Peperoncino, complete with a tutorial on how to trim an artichoke. I will definitely be trying out this out at home.

I veered from the usual suspects recently and tried the tagaliolini ai frutti di mare (seafood pasta – $12.50 – pictured above). Clams, calamari, shrimp, and mussels sauteedin garlic and served with a light tomato sauce. I found myself wishing this dish had some spice to it – it’s nothing a generous sprinkling of red pepper flakes wouldn’t have helped, but I was in a rush and it was a hassle trying to get our server’s attention and the dish was still tasty as it was, I just like my seafood pasta in red sauce with a little kick.

My only true complaint? They don’t take reservations. So arrive really early (they open at 5 pm daily – it’s usually not too hard to get a table before 7) or really late (like after 9:30), especially if you have a party larger than 2 people. If you don’t mind waiting a bit, sidle up to the bar at Von next door. They’ll let you bring your wine from Von over to Bianca, or you can have your food served to you at Von if Bianca’s full and you’re able to get a table at Von. Von does take reservations, by the way. If you live in the area, you lucky duck, you can also order Bianca to-go.

Note: Bianca is cash only. There’s a Chase on Bowery at Bleecker, though, so no worries if you have to run to the ATM; it’s not far.

If you’re uptown in UWS, sister restaurant Celeste on Amsterdam between 84th and 85th is supposed to be similar, as well.

Eat: Bianca (Bowery/NoHo) 5 Bleecker St. between Bowery and Elizabeth. Open daily from 5 pm.



Star Wars vs. Star Trek Burlesque Showdown
August 22, 2011, 2:20 pm
Filed under: Go, Laugh, Watch

That’s right. I am totally nerding it up this Friday. I am sure this is going to be absolutely hilarious. Are C3P0 and Spock really going to make out? I’m going to the Friday show, but there are shows Thursday through Saturday. Dates and times of the shows can be found here. Just FYI, if you buy online it’s $15 plus service charge, which comes to about $18 so you’re better off just buying tickets at the door unless you’re afraid this is going to sell out. Which is very possible given its feature as Time Out New York’s Critic’s Pick.

The Star Debate: Trek vs. Wars

Nerdlings,

The geeks of EW! will clash against one another in civil war to settle one of the most impassioned nerd arguments of our time: Which science fiction franchise is superior, Star Trek or Star Wars? Leading the arguments for Team Trek will be vaudevillian Nelson Lugo, with “evidence” provided by Trekkie hotties Bonnie Voy’age, Lefty Lucy, Miss Mary Cyn and special guest Fem Appeal. Arguing on behalf of Star Wars will be nerd rapper Schaffer the Darklord and his team of sultry Siths BB Heart, Victoria Privates, Magdalena Fox and special guest Rosey La Rouge. Since our hosts will be playing the parts of opposing counsel, our audience will play the part of jury. Indeed, the “winner” will be determined by your vote.

EPIC WIN Burlesque presents “The Star Debate: Trek vs. Wars.” This sexy symposium will settle the great nerd argument once and for all. Phasers will clash with lightsabers. Klingons will battle Stormtroopers. Tribbles will wrestle Ewoks. And although there can be only one victor, all of the nerds in attendance will unite and rejoice in the majestic spectacle of space boobs. The battle has begun.

Two costumed nerds passionately argue the superiority of their favorite science fiction franchises, with sexy “evidence” provided by superstars of the NYC burlesque scene.

TREKvsWARSEPIC WIN Burlesque has been accepted into the 2011 NYC Fringe Festival. The New York International Fringe Festival (FringeNYC) is the largest multi-arts festival in North America, with more than 200 companies from all over the world performing for 16 days in more than 20 venues.

May the force live long and prosper.

Epic Win Burlesque presents The Star Debate: Trek vs. Wars - 9:15PM

66-68 East 4th St.
New York New York
Price: $15 in Advance – $18 @ the Door


Chocolate-covered strawberry football cupcakes
August 1, 2011, 9:56 am
Filed under: Cook, Eat | Tags: , , , , , ,

In the spirit of the upcoming college football season, I thought I’d share my friend Sera’s football cupcakes from her last Superbowl party. Chocolate-dipped strawberries with icing laces! How festive and football-y is that?

You should see the hamburger cake she made for her bf’s birthday. Uh. Maze. Ing.

If you want her to whip up some custom cupcakes/cakes for your next fete (bdays, bridal showers, baby showers, weddings), leave a comment or tweet me and I’ll send her a note for you. She is one half of the sometimes-on Project Cupcake.



Jilly’s Chicken Adobo
July 18, 2011, 11:58 pm
Filed under: Cook, Drink | Tags: , , , ,

In 2008, we had a rotating potluck going and it was Jilly’s turn to cook the main. I’d been craving Filipino food so I requested that she make chicken adobo because all Filipinos know how to make amazing chicken adobo, right? Riiight. All Filipinos know how to make amazing chicken adobo just like all Japanese are ninjas. That first stab at chicken adobo? Let’s just say it was… less than successful. Blame it on the fact that she used boneless skinless chicken breasts, or that she used full sodium soy sauce, or that she hadn’t yet learned what brining was. One diner actually asked, “Is this beef?”

Then one day, she posted this picture, and I knew she’d finally figured it out:

Two years, it took, but she finally perfected the recipe and when I begged her to let me try the new and improved version of her chicken adobo, she had me over for dinner. As I walked into the apartment, the aroma of garlic and ginger wafting through the air, the sound of the chicken sizzling in the pan, and the sight of my lovely hostess smiling at me… it all had me a little weak in the knees.

You’ve come a long way, baby.

Ingredients

  • 3 lbs bone-in chicken legs (drumstick/thigh combos), brined overnight in solution of 1/4 cup salt + 1 gallon of water
  • 8 large cloves of garlic, finely minced
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, thinly sliced
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 3/4 cup reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 3/4 cup white vinegar
  • Coconut oil OR canola oil to fry chicken
Preparation (as written by Jilly)
  1. After brining chicken for 24 hours, remove and let sit in a bowl for 1 hour (to let the water soak into the chicken and away from the skin…we want crispy skin!)
  2. Marinate chicken for 1 hour in all of the above ingredients (minus the brine, of course) in a large pot
  3. Begin cooking; let simmer and stir regularly until chicken appears cooked, opaque and white. Turn off heat.
  4. Have a frying pan ready with oil, preheated till oil is shimmering (supa dupa hot)
  5. Begin frying chicken in batches as pan allows–this will be messy, but worth it! If possible, a brave soul with long arms (and long sleeves) should be the one doing this step
    • Fry till crispy, golden, and brown.
    • As each piece is perfectly fried, put it back into the pot with the soy/vinegar/garlic mixture
  6. When done frying, cook the chicken back up in the soy mixture, and simmer until mixture is thick and chicken is cooked through (the poke-with-a-knife test, etc.)
    • Jill likes to add a teaspoon of sugar in there as it simmers at this step to make it a little richer and caramelized-ish
Recommended wine pairing: 2008 Pfaffenheim Pinot Blanc d’Alsace.
Grape: 100% Pinot Blanc
Region: Pfaffenheim (Alsace), France.
Notes: 100 growers created a co-operative called ‘The winegrowers of Pfaffenheim’, whose grapes are never sold outside of the Co-op. Several Grand Cru vineyards. 2010 is the first year these wines are sold in the U.S.Description: Beautiful golden-yellow color with clean aromas of peach and apricots. The palate is surprisingly dry for such intense aromas and richness. Lovely minerality and starfruit character that yields to red plum on the finish.

Serve with mango salad:
  • 3 Jersey tomatoes OR 4-5 plum tomatoes, diced into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1/2 red onion, also diced
  • 1 mango, diced (use a firm mango to avoid smushiness..we like crisp!)
  • as much or as little cilantro as you’d like, finely chopped
  • dash of white vinegar, to taste
  • dash of soy or fish sauce, to taste
  • squeezed 1/2 lime or 1/4 lemon
  • 1/2 tablespoon sugar
Dice it up and throw it all together.
I like mine extra crispy.
To balance it all out with a starch, I like garlic rice, although any rice will do. For garlic rice, just take a crapload of minced garlic and saute it in a crapload of butter before stirring in cooked white rice (I like it kinda mushy). Nom.



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