eat. shop. love. nyc.


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.



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.



Hidden EV sushi gem Cotan
July 6, 2011, 12:29 am
Filed under: Eat | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Cold tofu dissolves on tongue. Scallion bits crunch.

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Miso black cod melts in your mouth, hint of sweetness lingers.

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Slightly warmed rice gives new life to fresh and succulent fish. Unctuous uni and silky botan ebi leave me with eyes aglaze.

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Tempura fried bananas corrupt.

Cotan reduces me to poetry.

Seriously, though. This place is legit underrated. Quality of sushi vs. price makes it an incredible steal, and the non-sushi fare was excellent, as well. This is not the place you go for sexy ambiance or cheap sushi. You go here because the food makes it so effing worthwhile. The sushi deluxe (9 pieces) includes uni (sea urchin) and a tuna roll that made my eyes roll into the back of my head. Yeah. It was that good.

Eat: Cotan. 135 1st Ave at St. Mark’s.



Scoop St. Taste of Nolita Food Festival
June 21, 2011, 11:03 am
Filed under: Eat, Go | Tags: , , ,

They gone done it again. Scoop Street first broke onto the online couponing scene two years ago with its Taste of Seventh Street food fest. Now they’ve picked some stellar Nolita eats.

I’m there.

Taste of Nolita
$19 ($35 value) Scoop it!
Nolita,
Manhattan
If you had to pick just one neighborhood in New York that embodies cool – that has all the chic-est boutiques, the hippest vibe, the widest variety of delicious restaurants – what would it be? Nolita wins our vote, which is why – after two Tastes of 7th Street and a Taste of Midtown East – we’re bringing you our first ever Taste of Nolitafood festival.From tacos at Tacombi to award-winning croissants (Serious Eatsrated them #1 in NYC) at Ceci-Cela to fusion hot dogs at Asiadog, Nolita offers some of the city’s most diverse and lauded food options. But don’t just take our word for it – grab your friends, family, date, or anyone else you know and come experience the flavors for yourself.For just $19, your “Taste of Nolita” ticket gets you nearly half off the signature menu items – a $35 value – at the neighborhood’s hottest eateries all day from Wednesday-Friday, June 22nd-24th, 2011.Whether you try them all in one go – complementing the tastes with discounts on coffee and drinks – or spread out your sampling over the three-day affair, this is one event you won’t want to miss out on.So where does this one-time event make you an insider?

  • Asiadog – any one of their signature hot dogs with your choice of their seven toppings
  • Tartinery – one small croque monsieur tartine (open-faced croque monsieur sandwich)
  • Tacombi – one taco al pastor (marinated pork with pineapple)
  • Oxley’s Carvery – Choice between:
    • Any signature sandwich, including roast beef or turkey with stuffing and cranberry sauce
    • One Yorkshire pudding platter duo with pulled pork and braised beef
  • Ceci-Cela – one small croissant
  • Eileen’s Special Cheesecake – one mini cheesecake

Is your mouth watering yet? Hurry and grab your tickets to the first ever Taste of Nolita extravaganza before they disappear.

Read more…



Rendezfoods Summer Duck Feast
June 6, 2011, 10:11 am
Filed under: Drink, Eat, Go | Tags: , , , ,

Kick off the summer with a whole roasted duck feast at Edi & the Wolf in Alphabet City as featured in Time Out NY and Thrillist. Austrian chefs Eduard “Edi” Frauneder and Wolfgang “the Wolf” Ban salt and stuff a duck with orange and apple quarters, celery, garlic cloves and rosemary before rubbing it down real good with paprika and other magic herbs.

We’ve ordered two whole birds and a sampler of small plates, shared plates, and shared entrees.

  • Who: Your hosts plus 10 lucky foodies
  • What: Duck Feast, estimated cost $30 to $40 pp including tax and tip – does not include beverages
  • Where: Edi & the Wolf 102 Ave C btwn 6th & 7th (212-598-1040)
  • When: Friday, June 10 @ 8 pm

RSVP via Eventbrite no later than Wednesday, June 8. The RSVP is free, but bring some cash to cover your share of dinner.

Haben sie Hunger?