eat. shop. love. nyc.


Forgive me; I’ve been busy eating.
March 19, 2010, 2:59 pm
Filed under: Cook, Eat | Tags: , , , , , ,

The bf was leaving town so I was busy eating, hence the lack of substantive posting, and the pathetic non-posts to come are the reult of necessary spring cleaning as reorganize my life and prepare for Mama’s NYC visit this weekend. (Breaking out the bleach and the Fantastik – watch out!)

Fret not, friends; I have been gathering lots of material to write about.

Coming soon: Spice-roasted chicken and lemon pepper pea shoots, Eleven Madison Park Gourmand tasting menu (lunch), Alias Sunday Supper, and Jo’s Crispy Pork Ribs.

Today, I leave you with this tweet from Michael Voltaggio (@MVoltaggio) to yours truly (@melodyhan):

There you have it! Marinate your flank steak a la MVoltaggio with a blend of OJ, soy sauce, crushed red pepper, and scallions.

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Bone Marrow Madness in NYC

I truly love bone marrow. I grew up eating it mostly in Korean seolleongtang soup and other beef or oxtail broths or sucked out of galbi bones, but as an adult, my eyes were opened to the joys of roasted bone marrow. I had been scrolling through my Twitter feed when I saw this tweet from Michael Voltaggio:

“Colicchio and sons bone marrow with anchovy, need I say more! Great dish.. http://twitpic.com/17ud8h

I’m a little disappointed that I didn’t post about bone marrow earlier (this blog had been saved in “drafts”), as it seems Yelpers have now beaten me to the punch and now I just look like I’m just hopping on the marrow wagon when I’ve been a longtime passenger. Whatever the case, I thought I’d get to typing and put together a little bone marrow roundup for y’all.

I recently had the bone marrow at Jo’s, which is cut lengthwise and topped with anchovies and crusty parsley bread. The anchovy adds another level of complexity that elevates the bone marrow from something that’s already great to something even better.


Still, there’s something to be said for the simplicity of roasted marrow served on its own, with nothing to detract or distract from its ooey gooey rich and fatty goodness. The marrow at Prune is served just this way, the bone served intact and upright with a side of salt and fresh parsley.

Here’s a list of restaurants in NYC where you can try bone marrow different ways. If you try any, let me know what you think! Full list of roasted marrow and marrow soup restos after the jump: Continue reading



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.



Can’t stop thinking about Miyagi oysters
February 23, 2010, 1:01 pm
Filed under: Eat | Tags: , , , , , ,

Photo credit: James Antrim, IST

Last night was much like any other: get off work, feel like happy hour, head to Jo’s. Oddly, I wasn’t much in the mood for oysters, but when we sat down at the bar, owner Jim Chu (also of White Rabbit) told us he’d gotten in a shipment of Miyagis and that we should try some.

We ordered a half dozen oysters ($1 each till 8 pm!) along with the last Meat in a Cup ($9) – they make limited portions because it has to cook for 8 hours, and they don’t make it every day so you’re never sure if they’re going to be sold out of it or not. The Meat in a cup is a metal cup of warm-ish meat slow cooked in a rich gravy, served with toasts and a tart frisee salad. Hearty + homey with a dash of acid and greens = yum. Wish there had been one more slice of toast, though, as with 5 pieces of toast there was leftover meat in the cup and it had to be eaten as meat on a spoon.

When the oysters arrived, the first thing I noticed were that they looked like they’d been taking steroids. I thought Royal Miyagis were supposed to be small and delicate. I don’t know if these were the prissy Royal kind; they were fit for the hungry laborer! Even more surprising was the depth of the shells. It turns out that the shell is quite concave, housing a deceptively large bit of oyster meat. The texture was very creamy, but the flavor was a bit salty, a bit fishy, and very meaty – all of that in a very good way.

The other bar patrons were friendly and funny, and Jim was hilarious. There was a group from the nearby Gawker offices and a Juilliard-schooled violinist from the antique lighting shop on Houston. Great mix.

I have plans to have pancakes with blackberries, pecan streusel, and warm maple butter for dinner, but I am tempted to go by Jo’s beforehand to see if there are any more Miyagis as an appetizer…



Add Jo’s to your SoHo happy hour rotation
February 19, 2010, 1:02 pm
Filed under: Eat, Go | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

I booked it to Jo’s with Sara N. after work on a Monday night around 7:50 and by 8:00 was already on my second $4 Ommegang Witte (fresh keg – have never tasted beer head quite so delicious – citrusy and wheaty with some darker sweeter spices). We ordered the $1 happy hour oysters (5-8 pm weekdays) and, by god, were they big. Normally, I prefer smaller oysters because they taste more delicate, but maybe it was the beer (perfect pairing!) but these big oysters also had big, briny flavor. I’ve been to Jo’s once before and the oysters were good, but not as good as that night. I’m drooling a little thinking about it.

I went back to Jo’s the very next day because it’s close to work and because I could not get the Jerk and a Slap (three types of house-cured jerky and a Pork Slap beer for $9) and Meat in a Cup (slow cooked meat served in a cup) out of my head. Sadly, they were out of Meat in a Cup but they did have some jerky and Pork Slap around. I was disappointed with the jerky, as I found it to be too salty, too tough, and too small. On the upside, I loved the Porkslap Pale Ale. It’s hard to find beer in a can that actually tastes good, and I think this is it. Not overly hoppy and just the right amount of carbonation with very slight citrus notes. I’ll be having that again. The gruyere gougeres were not what I expected, but man, those warm little cheesy bread balls are dee-frickin-licious with some sriracha sauce! Continue reading



NYC Oyster Happy Hour Roundup

[tweetmeme]Another reason to love living in NYC – oyster happy hours! Below is a list of restaurants in lower Manhattan (sorry, I rarely make it uptown) where you can find great oyster and/or drink specials during happy hour:

Oyster happy hours I have tried:

  • Jo’s (Nolita/SoHo. 264 Elizabeth St. at Houston. 212.966.9640) My fave oyster happy hour. Dimly lit restaurant with $1 oyster happy hour (and $4 beers on tap, $5 well drinks, $7 select wine) weeknights from 5-8pm, only available in the bar room which has seating at the bar and along the walls (can accommodate groups of 4-6 at the tables). Service is slow if you’re not seated at the bar, so you’ll have to go to the bar to order and to pay. Oysters change daily depending on what the fishmonger brings by – I’ve had Blue Points and Miyagis here. Jo’s isn’t crowded on weeknights, happy hour goes until 8 pm, and the people here are awesome.
  • Lure Fishbar (SoHo. 142 Mercer St. at Prince. 212.431.7676) Stellar happy hour from 5-7pm on weeknights, at bar area only. Arrive early to grab seats as it gets really busy, you may have to throw some elbows to place your order at the bar. $1 oysters and $1 littleneck clams are the best bet; top quality oysters. See happy hour menu here. Shrimp tempura with black sesame seeds is delish. Do not get the lobster croutons. You’ll be sad when you realize there are 4 extremely teeny (MAYbe 1cm squared) cubes. Select beer $5, select wine $6, and select cocktails $7.
  • Essex (LES. 120 Essex Street, entrance on Rivington. 212.533.9616) On Mondays and Thursdays, $1 oysters all night and half price drinks (except for pitchers) from 6-9pm. I think that makes the beers $3, the wine $4, and most cocktails $5-$6. The oysters are decent, but not as good as Lure’s or Jo’s. Still, it’s a great location for grabbing a drink and a snack before doing a Thursday night out in LES, and you really can’t complain when you get to drink an Ommegang brew for $3. Also, this is a huge space, and can accommodate large groups.
  • Bondi Road (LES. 153 Rivington St. between Suffolk and Clinton. 212.253.5311) If quantity is more important to you than quality, and you like shrimp cocktail, then this is the place you will want to be spending your Thursday night. On Thursdays, Bondi Road does all you can eat raw oysters, shrimp, and Oysters Rockefeller (though I have read that sometimes they have oyster shooters instead) for just $9.99. Of course, they will try to convince you to take the $20 all you can drink for 2 hours deal on the side, but you can politely decline and just order as many beverages as you need.
  • Ulysses Folk House (Financial District. 95 Pearl Street between Coenties Aly & Hanover Sq. 212.482.0400‎) This is not really for happy hour, but Ulysses does have an all you can eat Sunday brunch that includes all you can eat oysters on the half shell for $20, along with fruits, breads, cheese and crackers, bagels and lox, sausages, corned beef, roast beef, ham, turkey, potatoes, veggies, salads… and a dessert tray. It also includes a Guinness, a (not very tasty) bloody mary, or a mimosa. It’s best in warm weather when you can eat outside at the picnic tables on the cobblestone street, but don’t expect 5 star food.

Oyster happy hours I have yet to try: Continue reading



Jo’s $21 Sunday Supper and $1 oyster happy hour
January 20, 2010, 12:15 pm
Filed under: Drink, Eat, Go | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

[tweetmeme]Two awesome deals for SoHo/Nolita restaurant Jo’s:

  1. Weekday happy hour oysters just $1 from 5-8 pm. You will find me at the bar with a Sancerre and a small mountain of empty oyster shells.
  2. $21 3-course Sunday supper. $21! Not only that, but there will also be a special $21 bottle of wine available for pairing with your $21 Sunday supper.

Go: 264 Elizabeth St. (at Houston), New York, NY 10012-5512. (212) 966-9640