eat. shop. love. nyc.

$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.


FREE Miniburger Mondays at Idle Hands
May 6, 2011, 10:22 am
Filed under: Drink, Eat | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

I love a good free food with drink deal. And I love Idle Hands Bar – how can you not love a place whose tagline is Bourbon. Beer. Rock.? So this news makes me giddy:

  • Who: burger, beer, and bourbon lovers all across NYC
  • What: free mini burgers from That Burger Tent
  • Where: Idle Hands on Ave. B at 3rd St.
  • When: Mondays from 7 to 10 pm
  • Why: One of the Idle Hands’ owners also runs Burger Conquest. Need I say more?
  • How: Get a free mini burger w/$5 drink purchase, or buy mini burgers for $2 each


Eat/Drink: Idle Hands Bar (Alphabet City/East Village) 25 Avenue B between 2nd and 3rd, downstairs; New York, New York 10009. (917) 338-7090. Miniburger Mondays from 7-10 pm.

Spotted Pig burger 0: striped bass 1
September 28, 2010, 9:34 am
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I was really looking forward to trying the much raved-about burger at The Spotted Pig over in the West Village. Maybe my expectations were too high. Maybe it was an off day. Whatever the case, I was underwhelmed.

The $17 Chargrilled Burger with Roquefort Cheese & Shoestrings seems like it should be delicious, meaty, rich and Roquefort-y. Meaty it was, and it was mostly good, but there was just not enough juice dribbling out of the meat (medium rare wasn’t rare enough), not enough salt, and not enough Roquefort. Look at that Roquefort. Doesn’t it look sad? Meager? Overwhelmed by the massive amount of meat? The meat itself was underseasoned and could have used a larger dollop of cheese for sure. The shoestring fries were crispy and delicious with rosemary and crunchy little garlic slivers, and I shoveled the fries into my mouth by the handful.

And then there was the striped bass.

The striped bass redeemed it all. How they got the crust on that bass without overcooking or drying out the fish will never cease to amaze me. Pan Roasted Striped Bass with Tomatoes & Saffron, $28. There were no tomatoes on the plate and to be honest, I can’t really remember tasting any hint of tomato, but the saffron-infused sauce lent a slightly sweet, slightly bitter complexity. A little more tomato might have been nice for some acidity, but man, oh, man, was that fish cooked to perfection or what.

The Spotted Pig is cozy, welcoming, and it has a small but tasty selection of beer, including their home-brewed cask ale. I’d recommend you check it out, but you might want to ask them to be a bit more generous with the Roquefort.

Father’s Office Santa Monica burger recipe
April 7, 2010, 9:37 am
Filed under: Cook, Eat, Go | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

If you read my post about my favorite LA things, you may have noticed my mention of the ever-so-delicious Father’s Office burger. Because she loves me and wants me to be happy, Deidre sent me a link to a recipe for Chef Sang Yoon’s incredible Father’s Office burger. We’re talking juicy fatty meat with apple wood bacon, caramelized onion, gruyere, Maytag blue cheese, and arugula on a soft but slightly crusty French bun. Heart!

Photo courtesy of Grub Street & Father's Office

I wonder if you can buy the mini shopping carts they serve the sweet potato fries in so you can fully recreate the meal at home…

My favorite Los Angeles things

With the advent of good weather, I’ve been thinking about Los Angeles a lot lately. I especially miss the Mexican food there, and the fact that people don’t look at you like you’re from another planet if you wear PJs to brunch.

Every so often, friends will go to visit LA and they ask me what they should do an where they should eat. Here are my favorites: (I hope that they have held up with time!)

The Getty Center

Places to go an things to do:
#1. The Getty Center. Art (notably, Van Gogh’s Irises) and a sweeping view of Los Angeles, a breathtaking garden where you are allowed to picnic, $6 to park the car, otherwise free. One of my absolute favorite places to spend an afternoon on a clear day. Now there is also a Getty Malibu.
#2. Hiking in Runyon Canyon if you’re into celebrity sightings and sweaty, scantily clad Hollywood types working out.
#3. Snag cheap tickets ($6-$10 for a seat in the back!) to catch a show/concert in the open air ampitheatre Hollywood Bowl. I highly recommend the Sound of Music singalong! (Also saw Buddy Guy, Etta James, John Mayer, Oasis, etc.) Bring your own wine and food and make it a picnic.
#4. Visit the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA).
#5. Experience the meat market and sh*t show that is Q’s / Cabo Cantina (Brentwood).
#6. Pack a picnic and head over to the Hollywood Forever Cemetery (sounds morbid, but it’s really not) to watch a Cinespia movie screening against the wall of a mausoleum. Starts May 2010 and runs through the summer. You can pay your respects to Marilyn Monroe.
#7. Santa Monica pier in the evening. Ferris wheel and cotton candy. Seriously, what girl doesn’t like that?
#8. Go shopping on Melrose (if you want to buy things you can afford) or on Rodeo Drive (if you would rather gaze lustfully at things you can’t afford).
#9. Get all shishi and go out at night to the SkyBar at the Mondrian (West Hollywood), the poolside bar at the Viceroy Hotel (Santa Monica), the rooftop bar at The Standard Hotel (downtown LA), celeb-filled Chateau Marmont (Hollywood – an Andre Balasz property, it’s hard to get in unless you are a guest!) or Bar Marmont (less exclusive than inside the Chateau), or Teddy’s at the Roosevelt (Hollywood).
#10. Check out the boardwalk at Venice Beach to see some real characters. Skateboarding dogs with green mohawks, rollerblading electric guitar guy, man in Speedo with balls, Muscle Beach, etc. To see surfers, you’ll have better luck in Malibu.

What to eat:
#1. Tacos Por Favor. Cheap, delicious, can’t find it anywhere but LA. I strongly suggest the hard taco with carne asada and any of the burritos, though I favor the shrimp burrito (chock full of avocado and rice and cheese). The pickled carrots, onions, and jalapenos are delicious, and the spicy red sauce has a hint of cinnamon.
#2. Bay Cities Deli. The most delicious Italian deli sandwich you will have in your life. There’s something about the bread that is TO DIE FOR. Be prepared to wait in line, or order ahead. The Godmother is highly recommended.
#3. Father’s Office, Santa Monica (not the LA location). The Office burger… I still dream about it from time to time… Perfect burger on crisp fluffy bun topped with blue cheese and arugula. Don’t miss the sweet potato fries and the garlic aioli dipping sauce. No ketchup here. But trust me, it’s better that way. Also a huge selection of microbrews – Chimay on draught.
#4. In-N-Out burger – I’d get a double-double protein style with fries well done animal style and a neopolitan milkshake. Before you go, read up on the secret menu so you know how to order like an INO pro.
#5. El Taurino, downtown LA. Their carne asada burrito with special hot sauce and horchata always makes me happy.
#6. Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles. Duh! Be like Snoop Dogg and eat there.

Self-constructed 3-course meal

Yesterday’s eatventure with Sara consisted of three stops (unplanned) and a self-made three-course meal.

First stop: Jo’s (SoHo/Nolita)
Ate: 1/2 dozen $1 HH Miyagi oysters – these were normal sized, not on steroids – still buttery and meaty
Drank: HH draft of Ommegang Witte $4 for me, glass of Vouvray for S $10
Note: Angus the Aussie bartender has fabulous hair – he works Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Pardon the crappy camera but can you see how deep this Miyagi shell is? Not at all like the European flat oyster.

Second stop: Sachiko’s (LES)
Ate: Spicy Crunchy Rice (Spicy tuna on crispy rice) 6 pieces $8 – I am addicted.
Drank: HH sake for me, a very full champagne flute for $4; HH sake Cosmo for S $6
Note: We only ended up at Sachiko’s because when we arrived at CSBC (below) at 7pm, there was a 40+ minute wait for a table and we knew Sachiko’s has happy hour till 7:30 on weekdays.

The Spicy Crunchy Rice is good every time. Your choice of tuna or salmon. Also very good for HH is the tonkatsu ($10 – normally $14 if not HH). Sapporo drafts just $2.50 but I was afraid I’d be too full for Stop 3.

Third stop: Clinton St. Baking Company (LES) – February is Pancake Month!
Ate: BBQ Sugar Bacon Cheeseburger (BBQ sauce on the side) $16 & Fresh Blackberry Pancakes with Pecan Streusel and Warm Maple Butter
Drank: Water. We were already tipsy from HH boozing.
Note: 1/2 price bottles of wine on Mondays and Tuesdays. Also, they’ve just introduced a $16 Crab Cake Sandwich & Amstel Light combo deal on Mondays & Tuesdays. By the time we finished dinner at 9pm, there was an hour+ wait! Get there early, put your name on the list, and grab a drink elsewhere until your turn is up.

It’s Pancake Month at Clinton St. Baking Company
February 1, 2010, 9:27 am
Filed under: Eat, Go | Tags: , , , , , , ,

[tweetmeme]Clinton St. Baking Company (LES) is a brunch and breakfast staple in my neighborhood. Any time I walk past it before noon, weekend or not, there is a line. In the summer, that line can be so long as that it spills over onto Houston. I think it’s been touted as a quintessential American breakfast place in a Japanese guide book or something, because there are always a couple of wide-eyed Japanese girls talking excitedly over a shiny little book with a picture of the NYC skyline.

CSBC is, above all, famous for its pancakes served with warm maple butter. Usually, they offer only regular or blueberry pancakes, but during Pancake Month (February) each year, they come up with a slew of specialty pancake offerings to be offered throughout the month. Please note that special pancakes will be served Monday through Friday only. See the Pancake Month calendar below: Continue reading