Friday, March 13, 2015

NY RESTAURANT WEEK #LeCirq

I've been here a few times but there are other restaurants that participate in this event and for me to go again is because a friend of mine chose it.  This is when company takes priority over food.

The selection to choose from the special deal were all not my favorite (Other restaurants put their best foot forward).  If I stick to the choices for the set deal, the more I won't enjoy.  So, you guessed right, I opted for the almost twice the price of the special deal less $1.  This way, I get my appetizer of choice and dessert of choice. 
This is not the menu I chose. And the appetizer below was an extra cost our friend ordered from the Restaurant Week Menu.
Above was one of the appetizers served with "foamed" sauce.
I ordered the house Foie Gras with a puree and slice of pear. 
Seabass for my main course which I think was also in the menu about 4 years ago is what I picked again.  It's funny that I did mention this to my sister prior to my being at this restaurant; only to actually get served the same fish!

Away from the set menu for Restaurant Week, I got a bigger Foie gras and my choice of dessert.  And my choice was hot Chocolate Souffle!
The souffle saved my meal!

I think this place is a little over-rated.  I personally prefer some others that participate at Restaurant Week.  Restaurants should actually put out their best that could Wow me for the money. I was expecting a more haute cuisine than what I experienced.  And I knew this would be my experience as before. And that means not very impressive.

Let me try once more as my friend said I should have picked the shrimp dish.  I will tell you after next week - as we plan to return for the prix-fixed lunch menu. (No longer Restaurant Week)

Le Cirq

Friday, February 13, 2015

TULSI - Indian Restaurant

I've been passing by this restaurant since the time of inception as they took over the space. Tonight, after 3 months back from my trip frim India eating at I the best Indian restaurants which I made sure to go to, I decided to try Tulsi.
Before I went to India, most of my Indian food experience has been either buffet style or sometimes ala carte and they seem to all be mushy or grilled like a tandoor.

I am glad that I have the opportunity to evaluate what a Michelin Star chef cooking Indian food in New York is like.

The place is modern as you can see. Their menu varies from food from the north to the South in this restaurant.

I ordered Shrimp Balchao as my first course.  It was good but I wasn't impressed.  It reminded me more of a Philippine seafood dish called escabeche. It had tomato sauce, onions as a base and I could taste the sugar.
The price was a bit too high for something one can prepare the sauce ahead of time and shrimp added after.  $14!
Above was a dish I wanted to compare with what I had in India called Lal MAAS. It is goat stew with ginger, masala and other Indian spices.  It was good but for the amount of goat I had, $28 was outrageous!
The garlic naan was the best in the meal. The dough was very light and crisp and flavorful. That was $5.
Another disappointing dish I ordered was the fried okra.  I enjoyed this very much in Jaipur when my Tourguide ordered it. That was nice green thin slices of okra fried crisp.  But at Tulsi:
The okra was saved by the onions they fried and added to the dish; but it tastes more like burnt whatever. Because of the nutrient and the cost $9, I had ton save it to take home.

For dessert, I wanted to try something new. 
So I ordered Santra Payasam. It's some Indian custard served in a bowl made of chocolate. I can't complain but I wasn't ecstatic.

Now, my curiosity has just been fixed!

Tulsi
East 46th St., between 2nd and 3rd Avenues.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Pies-N-Thighs

For me, this is so far the best fried chicken in the city.  Lightly battered which pulls out easily with the most juicy chicken inside.

I ordered the fried chicken box. It comes with 3 pieces of fried chicken of your choice, a large homemade biscuit served with maple butter and a choice of side - mine was Collard green salad with tangy dressing, avocado, (cooked or is it pickled) onion, and roasted coconut.
To go, I bought a studded pecan yeast donut with maple:
And sour dough donut which is very different:
This certainly is my new place for the traditional fried chicken.  They also have chicken and waffles - will try that next time.

PIES-N-THIGHS
43 Canal St, New York, NY 10002
www.piesnthighs.com/


Friday, January 30, 2015

BOROUGH MARKET, London, England

My kind of trip besides site seeing and going to museums and historical artifacts is eating the food of the country I am visiting.

Eating the food in another country is experiencing the lives of the people who live there.  Besides the restaurants I went to and strategically made reservations in advance to make sure I get in, I purposely went to Borough Market.

On my first day to Borough Market was in a Sunday whereby I found out that they were closed when I got there.   Fortunately, there are a couple of kiosks or little restaurants in the area that were open.  I tried a sandwich place that sold sausages. The sausage was made with wine.  This store is located near the entrance by the church if you are crossing the bridge to get to Borough Market.

Above was my sandwich whereby you could put some dressings to top it. I got it from The Guildable Manor
Then, I stumbled upon a fish and chips place.  I asked if they had a smaller portion of fish and chips to try.  They did and I was in luck!  So, i ate at FISH! Menu below:
Crunchy battered fish served with French fries and mushy peas. 
On my way back home, I stopped by this wonderful chocolate and restaurant place in the area outside Borough Market at Eabot 1745.
One of the chocolates I bought from Rabot 1745 was 75% dark chocolate. They also carried chocolate hand and body lotion. No, I did not eat arbette restaurant - but wish I did. 

Because it was a Sunday, the market was closed.  But I returned during the week on a Wednesday and had a fabulous time. Below are some of the highlights  of the food I found outstanding!
He makes these fresh coconut custard that's so light.  I actually ate it first before proceeding.  The dessert is called Khanom Krok.

I had to try the large oysters from this seafood stall next.
'Wanted to show you how large this oyster is. I love oysters! So when I stumbled upon another oyster place called Harry Howard's Oyster, I had to have more!

And this place has a good deal for oysters! Read the blackboard. And you can guess it, I had to try it because he offered 2 kinds of sauces for the oysters.  

'Had to buy this cheese! After all, it was served at the Royal Wedding.

Below, I had to buy Jamon Iberico de Bellota. Heavenly at Brindisa that specialized in Soanish foods.

Stop by the truffle place! They sell or sorts of things including Parmesan cheese with truffles and below is Truffle pate.
Various sausages too. And he's, I bought 2 different pieces to try.
Last but not least, I had to try these cream-filled doughnuts.  Delightful!
I had a great few hours before I had to leave to go have High Tea at The Goring!

This was my experience at Borough Market on my visit to London last early Fall.  

For more information, you can go to:
www.visitlondon.com

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

IZAKAYA IN JAPAN at YOBANASHI

I loved this restaurant where we had our last dinner in Nagano.

Above was our first course. A salad with a a dressing beautifully presented.
One of the dishes we had
Thin crusted Japanese pizza
Fresh clams cooked with savory taste
Next time you're in Nagano, Japan, here's a dining place you may want to add in your book!


Friday, January 23, 2015

LA MAISON DU CHOCOLAT

My favorite chocolate store! And they now even carry 100% extreme chocolate bar!
As they say chocolate is healthy.  So if you want to lessen your sugar intake, instead of those diet sugar, this is the best way to have a healthy chocolate. I think this is the first time I have seen a chocolate bar with 100% on it.

They Also have hot chocolate. I ordered the dark chocolate:
It can be served with a bit of whipped cream on the side. This is not too sweet.
When available, they do sell hot chocolate mix. Just follow the instructions and you can have your own hot chocolate at home with a warm croissant from your favorite source.  In my case, I have been eating this little chocolate pellets to satisfy my chocolate cravings in tiny portions.  They're so good as is.

The remarkable quality of their ingredients and gifted craftsmanship is what makes their chocolates truly shine.


And of course, they do carry all kinds if too quality gourmet chocolate.  I love them all!

HOURS:

  • Sunday: Noon–6PM
  • Monday–Friday: 9:30AM–7PM
  • Saturday: 10AM–7PM

Monday, January 12, 2015

SAKE BAR HAGI -Authentic Japanese

This place opens only in the evening but closes past midnight! I have not been here when it's never packed. In fact, at peak hours, there could be a line.

I guess good food, service and price will always succeed - if you are in the restaurant business.

I come here for good food.  It's basic and the atmosphere is basic.  It is located right in midtown Manhattan by the Theater district.  Fortunately, it is not on street level; otherwise their price would be higher.  I like it that it's not easy to see but if you know it; you'd eat here.

I heard that some chefs actually come here to eat after work.  I guess because they serve tapas size food and have a variety of sake to serve.
I sat at the bar area tonight. No one actually ordered the sake but beer or green tea.

Tonight, I went for the specials on the board.
This is the baby sardine in "jako" salad.  It is served on a heap of julienned radish, some lettuce and fried seaweed or nori. The dressing is under the salad made like a Japanese vinaigrette.
Above is the soft shell shrimp served with ponzu sauce.
And of course I couldn't help but order from their regular menu, barra.  It's sliced pork belly skewered in stick and grilled.  Another irresistible item was the shishito peppers.

I was happy to have the best meal for 2015 without breaking the bank.

HAGI SAKE
152 West 49th Street, New York, NY 10019
www.sakebarhagi.com
Open 5:30PM-3:30AM 7-days a week!