10 Places

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10 Places

Belkisw | Jul 20, 202101:08 AM     2

We came to NY in late June for a week to see friends, family and have some good food and I thought worth putting together a little write-up.

The highlights were the two Mexican spots we went to, Claro and Atla (the lobster burrito and rctic char tostada are not to be missed). Both absolutely fantastic when it came to the food. And at Atla the drinks were also fab. The brunch drinks at Claro weren’t unfortunately (balance of each of them was off). These places really stood out compared to the general level of Mexican food that you historically get in NY. Can’t recommend them highly enough.

The next highlight of the trip was the sushi. For years I have complained about NY’s sushi besides one or two places as most are overpriced and not superb. But this time we went to Nakazawa and Noz for the sushi counter and both were fantastic. Nakazawa- the sake selection was excellent, as was the service, and quality of fish as well as combinations of flavors in the nigiri. Overall excellent bites, and the trio of uni was really excellent. Overall, amazing value for money given the quality. Really a fab meal.
Noz- the one negative was a very unhelpful and slightly snarky host (eg only one example- we liked one sake very much and asked if he knew where we could buy a bottle of it in NY if possible and he suggested we “google it” and walked off). But the food was fantastic, the meal started off not quite as punchy and I was worried we would be disappointed compared to Nakazawa, especially given the significantly higher price, but boy did the meal pick up. Huge diversity of truly excellent fish, very interesting point of view on the temperature of the rice he uses, and delicious plated dishes in the meal.

Thai Diner was also delicious, and very authentic tasting. The Pad See Ew the other shrimp was excellent, as was the rotisserie chicken. The Massuman curry was the only slight disappointment. Great drinks as well.

I loved the food at Gem. It was super light, interesting, subtle, delicate, and then some dishes were super punchy. The chef is going places and people should taste his food.

Llama San was excellent, perhaps the best Nikkei I have ever had. Really fantastic. The only issue I have with the place is how “hip” it is, and the overall snootiness of the wait staff.

Cote. The beef really is excellent, and the overall meal was just delicious. The service is annoying though, with slightly too many rules on what an entire table needs to order. But still, fab beef and well worth going.

We also went to Shabu shabu macoron for the beef. While the quality of it was good, and I say that comparing it to shabu shabu in Japan, some of the bites were very similar. And we arrived at 8:15 pm, 15 mins late for our booking, and were then rushed through over a dozen courses within an hour, which massively impaired our ability to enjoy the meal. The pacing was just so so off and we asked them to slow down and they said they couldn’t because they wanted us out by 9:30…

We decided to come to Momofuku as a throwback. I am sad to saw the ramen really wasn’t impressive, especially compared to the quality of ramen you can now get in any. The pork belly bao was yummy, and the shishitos were very good. But overall, unimpressed with the place at this point.

Di An Di was terrible. The food was such sub-par Vietnamese that I can’t understand how they have any guests honestly. I barely ate my main, the pork belly, it was so bad. Yes, I live in Asia, but this was bad even compared to Western standards for Vietnamese.

Jacob’s Pickle was ok for brunch. Not the best friend chicken you get in NY by a long shot, and the restaurant is blasting disco music at noon, which impaired our ability to catch up with my grandparents.

Hudson Smokehouse was amazing for BBQ. It was one of the best bbq spots I have been to, if not the best, in NY, while acknowledging that bbq in NY is never that good.

We went to Upland for lunch, it’s our second time there after a visit right when it opened- the Cacio e Pepe unfortunately is not as good as it once was. Burger was yummy though.

Paul's Da Burger Joint- these are unsophisticated but yummy burgers. But as someone who doesn’t live in the US, the sheer amount of meat you get is just too much. And it might be an unfair comparison but these burgers don’t stand up to a Minetta Tavern burger.

Sushi Noz
Llama San
Shabu Shabu Macoron
Di An Di
Jacob's Pickles
Hudson Smokehouse
Paul's Da Burger Joint
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