July 24, 2011

Stories from Manhantan (and Brooklyn)

OK so story #1: I was determined to visit the famed Brooklyn Flea Market after reading about it on NY Mag (which has just about replaced Yelp at this point for restaurant recommendations), and in particular - the foodie bonanza known as Smorgasburg.

Last weekend, we hopped on the ACE train and headed out to Brooklyn. First we got lost, then we walked 15 blocks only to find out we ended up at the wrong flea market and that the one were looking for was only open on Sundays. Sigh. Oh but of course it turned out to be an amazing (foodie) experience and I wound up staying for 5 hours. Today, I went to go see the "official" flea market in Williamsburg and who knew? It was basically the exact same thing. ha-ha.

HomeMade Fizzy Juice: Grapefruit & Jalapenos.  Sounds weird but you're talking to someone who eats jalapenos as a condiment. It was delicious :)
Other eats that I still need to try.
Pork Sandwiches on Ciabatta bread. and a piggie toy. adorbs. 

Corn Tortillas, Fresh Salsa and Spicy Toppings. All fresh and beautifully prepared. Sigh. 
[Pork Tacos]  Reminded me of the AMAZING tacos from Cancun. I've never been a fan of tortilla until I realized on day it was just flour tortilla. Corn tortilla gets a gold star from me. 
YUM YUM YUM!!! Can you tell I was excited?

Story #2: I was majorly craving fried chicken one night so I went over to Kyochon on 31st and 5th Ave.  I asked for the spicy wings and holy cow it was SPICY....like inedible spicy, I didn't even know such a thing existed. Kind of disappointing. Scratch that - really disappointing.  At least the pickled veggies were yummy except they were spicy too! Which would of course normally be ok but not when you've already lost feeling in your tongue. And the kicker of the story is that BonChon was only 1 block away and would probably have been infinitely better. Sigh.

That chicken even looks spicy in the picture.

Story #3: On a much happier note, I have had the most amazing, life-changing and memorable macarons of my life. WOW.  Bouchon Bakery has instantly become a new love. Located in the Time Warner's Building which is conveniently "only" 10 blocks from my apartment, we stopped by after a filling brunch at Silhouette.   Everything about the macarons was perfect. The texture was very cake-like and the fillings were creamy and not overwhelmingly sweet. I could easily eat a whole box of them. Fortunately or unfortunately, $4/macaron kept me from ordering a whole box.

Blueberry Cheesecake, Salted Caramel.
Story #4 Lunch at Ciano's on the hottest day of the year. Thank goodness for AC and prix fixe lunches :) We were literally drenched from the 1.5 blocks it took to walk to the restaurant.  For once, I was grateful for the freezing AC that's always being blasted at work.

I personally can never turn down eggplant when I see it on the menu. I don't know what it is for other people but its eggplant for me; plus Italian cuisine just happens to be one of the ones that consistently serves up delicious eggplant.

Crespelle; Savory Crepes filled with Ricotta Spinach, Zucchini and Swiss Chard
Tre Formaggi Raviolo; Stracchino, Burrata and Parmigiano with Rosemary-Brown Butter
Shaved Vegetable Salad with Mixed Greens, Carrot, Fennel, Peppers and Ricotta Salata
Roasted Eggplant “Amatriciania”; Tomato, Guanciale and Pepperoncini
Strawberry Sorbet & Biscotti. Of course, there is no other dessert choice but sorbet when the weather outside is spiking to 105 degrees.
Story #5: Brunch at Esperanto in the Village. With my weekends in NYC sadly winding down, it meant it was time to get adventurous. Instead of the usual brunch in Hells Kitchen - we ventured to the East side (so East that numbers turned into letters...which I of course didn't even realize existed) . And a prix fixe brunch that includes coffee and a cocktail for $10.95? Who can say no to that? 

Confession time: we were actually trying to get brunch at the Sunburnt Cow (unlimited mimosas for $20...) but the wait was over 2 hours and it was 2:00pm already. So we settled on Esperanto but I am very tempted to actually experience the experience  the midday version of an open bar. 

Huevos Rancheros. Esperanda with its colorful table designs and plastic decor reminds me of a fancier food shack off a beaten road somewhere in a tropical island. The side potatoes had flavorful kick to them - reminded me of paprika.
Tropical French Toast.  Nothing fancy, no brioche, no creme fraiche, no fruite compote. This french toast tasted like the french toast I had when my dad made it for me for the first time.
Huevos Languas: poached egg, greens and potato shrimp cake. The food here was also really similar to RX at Penn in the sense that the food is on the simpler side but well-prepared and in a light-hearted ambiance.

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