Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Docks Oyster Bar and Seafood and Grill

633 3rd Ave
New York, NY 10017
(212) 986-8080

The $1 Oysters Happy Hour is the big draw here and is mainly around the bar where it gets REALLY packed with men and women in business attire. All the seafood here is super fresh and the oysters are shucked perfectly retaining their "liquor" which is a treat! The $4 draft beer and $2 beef sliders make for a nice late afternoon snack.
This has become my favorite place for seafood. Service here is great too!
Bartender Jamie is really nice and cordial. If you have a chance to visit, stop by and check it out!

Docks Oyster Bar & Seafood Grill on Urbanspoon

Friday, May 10, 2013

Fairway Market

542 Second Ave
New York, NY 10016

Secretly wish you were a Food Network Star?
Think you can be a better Iron Chef?
You call yourself a Foodie?
This underground MEGA supermarket will definitely challenge you in more ways than one!

If you have never been to a Fairway Supermarket, then you are in for an eye opening experience. Eye opening because this place has almost EVERY food stuff imaginable from the local New York apple to the exotic French black truffle. Eye opening because you won't believe some of these luxury prices. Eye opening because you have to watch where you are going otherwise you will run over one of the many staff running about restocking or moving items, the gaggle of yuppies that frequent this place, or the myriad of baby strollers being pushed by nannies and Au pairs.

This supermarket definitely blows Whole Foods out of the water when it comes to variety but Trader Joe's has still has better prices. I must admit though that the fresh produce here is quite reasonable but don't go looking for a sales circular. They don't do that. Aside from eye opening, this place will tantalize (or assault) your olfactory senses with fresh coffee beans from around the world that you can grind yourself to the vats of cured olives to the exotic cheese section (want to know where it is? Just follow your nose).

The meats are VERY expensive IMHO as well as the Dairy and Juice Departments (but hey, they have to pay the high rent somehow) but you will find a lovely assortment of fresh made pastas (lobster ravioli and pumpkin ravioli being my favorites), dried aged steaks, and whole prosciutto.

Need black truffles to shave on your wild mushroom risotto? Got it!
Need a Black Forest Cake for dessert? You'll find it in their bakery.
Don't know how to cook but want to fool others to think that you can? They have a prepared foods counter here too!
Single and looking for a wealthy date? You just might find one here!

They also carry a huge line or Bob's Red Mill products for the home baker as well as a candy, dried fruits, and snacks area where everything is dispensed in bulk.

Don't believe me that his branch is awesome? Just wait until you take the LONG escalator trip down underground. The bird's eye view is enough to make your jaw drop!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

BBQue's Smoke Shack

668 6th Ave
New York, NY 10010
(212) 929-4227

Stopped by here for late lunch yesterday with friends after we found it on the AAdvantage Dining Program. The place was packed! I didn't read any iDine or Yelp reviews before I came here so I wasn't swayed in my own personal review.

First, the place is quaint and small decorated with wooden walls and metal signs to give it a "rustic shack" feel. You approach the counter where you can see their menu up behind them on the wall. A variety of barbeque sauces are listed. I chose the puled pork sandwich ($7.95) and added the waffles fries and drink (additional $3.95). After you pay, you are given a white card with a number and you then proceed to fill your cup from the soda machine or iced tea machine (feeling that I should stick with the Southern theme, I chose to go with iced tea).

Now find yourself a table. Park your seat and admire the decor and signs that adorn the walls as you wait. I thought the cashier people were going to call your number when your order was up but was pleasantly surprised when they came over with my order on what looks like a mini baking tray. They did the same for my friends' orders as well! The wait was not very long IMHO about as long as it takes to walk to the drink dispenser and back to your table twice (YES! Free refills!)
There is a large flat screen TV for people to watch the game.

The pulled pork was warm and moist. The Tennessee Whiskey Sauce I chose to have it tossed in was tasty with depth of flavor and the bun that it was tucked into was soft and sweet. The pickle slices were a pleasant surprise as a flavor foil against the sweet and smoky. Reminiscent of a Cuban sandwich. My waffle cut fries were hot, crispy, and well seasoned. Two bottles of extra sauces are available alongside the bottle of ketchup on your table: Honey BBQ and Mexican Spicy.

My friend ordered collard greens as a side which I sampled. Nothing extraordinary. Tasted like it might have come from a large can (especially since the collards were cut SO uniformly). As a foodie and someone who also cooks, you have to be REALLY obsessive compulsive to get each piece exactly 1/4" square. Bread pudding is also offered here which I will have to try the next time.

Overall, a pleasant and satifying experience.

 BBQue's Smoke Shack on Urbanspoon

Monday, April 8, 2013

Ben's Kosher Delicatessen Restaurants & Caterers

209 W 38th St
New York, NY 10018
(212) 398-2367

I've passed by this place so many times when I'm fabric shopping that it was high time that I checked them out. They also participate in the AAdvantage Dining Program and that was also a motivation (plus that fact that I was starving since breakfast was just a cup of coffee). Was intimidated at first upon entering as it appears a large place but I didn't have time to sit down for a long drawn out lunch and opted to grab something to go from the take out/ sandwich counter on the left.

Place is more cozier than Katz's Delicatessen downtown and the counter guy was very nice and patient (and cute!). I opted to try their kasha knish with a Dr. Brown's Cherry Soda. The knish is as big as a baby's head and seemed to weigh as much! VERY filling and the yellow deli mustard that was packed with it added the right zing. Everything in a traditional Jewish Deli seems big. The sandwiches are large enough to qualify as lunch AND dinner! Going back next time for hot pastrami on rye.
There's a $10 minimum for credit cards.

Old Jewish Delis are a part of New York's history and definitely worth checking out as they are slowly vanishing due to rising rent and the muscling in of chain franchises and luxury condominiums.

Update 4/24/13:

The Hot Pastrami on Rye wasn't bad but it wasn't the mile high abundance that you would get at Katz's Delicatessen or Stage. The sandwich was of average size but for the price of $12.95, you'd expect double the amount of meat. Had the sandwich to go and here's what you get with it: a container of deli mustard, a container of thousand island dressing, and two pickles: one kosher dill and one sour.

Ben's Kosher Delicatessen on Urbanspoon

Monday, March 18, 2013

Lucky's Famous Burgers

370 W 52nd St
New York, NY 10019
(212) 247-6717

Stopped into this one for lunch after finding it on the AAdvantage Dining Program listing. It seems a bit out of the way as you walk by several night clubs and store fronts heading further into Hell's Kitchen but once you walk through the door, you find yourself in a cheery little burger shop all in red and yellow. The counter people were very nice and chatted with me as I waited for my cheese burger to be made on the other side of the wall (everything seems to pass through a small window opening from the kitchen). $10 for the Lucky's Cheddar Burger Meal that includes crinkle cut fries and a 24 oz. drink. Aside from the packets of ketchup that are tossed in, you also get two small containers of chipotle aioli. I chose to use the aioli on my burger and to dip the fries and I can tell you that it was heaven! I opted for everything on my burger (tomato, lettuce, onion, pickle) so I could feel like I was eating healthy. LOL!
The burger was quite good! Juicy and hand formed and not thin and gray like major burger chains.

Going to go back and try their onion rings.

 Lucky's Famous on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Famous Amadeus Pizza

856 8th Ave
New York, NY 10019
(212) 489-6187

The pizza is what stands out here from all the dishes that I have sampled. Crust is crisp and good with a nice chew. The sauce is also good. The mozzarella is a bit oily though. Tried their Calzone which has a nice crust but the ricotta cheese seemed to have lacked salt. Perhaps it's the perfect foil for the fillings that you can have added to them but the blanched spinach seemed bland and in need of seasoning. Garlic knots have become my favorite as there is a NICE amount of garlic used and the marinara sauce that accompanies them is perfect! Their eggplant Parmesan needs a bit more seasoning in my humble opinion but that have a pretty decent lamb gyro sandwich as well. The prices are average for a NY pizzeria. Service is good and the guys cordial. Clean looking too with the red and white tiles.

 Famous Amadeus Pizza on Urbanspoon

Monday, January 7, 2013

Steak 'n Shake Signature

1695 Broadway
New York, NY 10019
(212) 247-6584

Stopped here for lunch out of recommendations from friends.
I was walking back and forth looking for the place until I found it right next door to the David Letterman Show (wonder if he ever stops in?).

Tried the Double 'n Cheese burger with fries for $3.99.
The burgers are made from ground beef and you can see it, just like if you were making a burger at home and not that frozen, processed, dense hockey puck like at McDonald's or Burger King. The french fries were tasty. Crispy, thin cut, and nicely seasoned. It's said that fat is flavor and I suppose that is why everything here was so tasty! I noticed that my fingers were greasy after my second bite into the hamburger and the paper cup that held the fries had tell tale signs of oil spots, absorbing the oil from the fries.
I had the works on my burger ( tomato, lettuce, pickles, ketchup, mayo) so the vegetables made me feel like I was eating a bit healthier.

Staff is cordial and cutely dressed in their red, black, and white uniforms. Decor is nice too.
Going to go back and try their "hand dipped" milk shakes next time.

Steak 'n Shake Signature on Urbanspoon