New York Eats

New York is pretty much any foodie's wet dream, so many flavours, odd inventions and just fantastic regional/ethnic food. When I think about going back a lot of what I want to do is eat, more specifically eat at particular places we ate at on our trip, places that haunt me they were that damn good... 


Murrays Bagels

We asked our friends to recommend somewhere for bagels, being that they are an NYC tradition. Mr O isn't a fan really, at least not as much of a bagel junkie as me, but even he was convinced. The perfect mix of crunchy exterior with a soft chewy interior, and 15 varieties to sample. Loads of filling options too. Mine, well of course it was an everything with for the traditional lox and cream cheese, and it hit the spot perfectly!


Julianas

Mention pizza under the Brooklyn Bridge and its a safe bet that people are talking about Grimaldi's. For me its Julianas. Good service, nice vibe and some of the nicest pizza I've had. I love a pizza with proper Bufala Mozzarella on it, and they didn't disappoint. A really nice selection of beer to go along with it, which is always good with a pizza on a hot afternoon. The char/leoparding on the base was good, and you can see into the kitchen and watch them hand throw your pizza. A nice touch is a blackboard that names the chefs working that day.

photo from ESH

Esh

This was a Choice Eats Food Festival gem. I'm not a massive BBQ person, but he is, so I had at least a bite of pretty much all the BBQ offerings that night. Esh was one where we both went to town on the samples - it was really well cooked BBQ sure, but the flavour combos they use, combined with the wood fired ovens, make this Israeli BBQ something else entirely. A flavour sensation thats for sure, plus instagram gives hints of fantastic cocktails and a great rooftop bar. The trip out to Williamsburg might put some off but for us, well reservations are definitely going to be made.


Totto Ramen

First things first, this place isn't really one for a big night out, I'd say more for a quick bite. Cash only, no reservations but you aren't waiting long. If you are staying in midtown and get in from your flight late I'd wholeheartedly recommend heading out for a stretch of your legs and some Ramen. Basic bowls start at $10, but you can customize with extras like egg, pulled pork and seaweed. Big vats of stock are ready to rock and it takes no time to put together - just like noodles should be. It can be a good show if you get sat at the bar.

photo from Breads Bakery

Breads Bakery

Another gem from the Choice Eats Festival. We only tried the "world famous Chocolate Babka" but oh my god, it is so amazing I'm already trying to work out exactly how many I could fit in my freezer and bring back with me next time. The taste of the thing HAUNTS me. Babka of this style is a North American tradition, so for that reason alone go and try "local food", but you will eat the whole thing for the taste.


Decoy

A recommendation from our friend who used to live in the village, we decided to give this place a go after being persuaded by tripadvisor reviews claiming the peking duck was on par with that in Beijing. It wasn't quite that good (the hoi sin wasn't quite up to scratch) but it was certainly the best I've had SINCE Beijing. We were also swayed by the fact they take reservations, as that isn't always a given even with the best places, and we fancied a date-night out. Queuing for hours wasn't part of that plan.

With a reservation, they commit you to getting the set menu, which for the two of us included the duck and sauces, three items from the "bar snacks" menu and  a side/rice each. It was a feast - and actually a great way to try some Katz Pastrami as I had no intention of waiting in the huge lines at the diner. On top of the Katz Pastrami triangles, we had their dumplings which were perfection. The cocktail menu was really interesting, and the cocktails were also rather fab. The Sitting Down for Dinner, which has a duck stenciled on the top, was particularly lovely. We were way too full for dessert.


Agave

Another recommendation I'm passing on, this place serves fab Mexican food and Tequila. Not tex-mex, but proper Mexican. A really lovely guacamole with warm blue corn totopos seems to be a known specialty, and it deserves that. No cocktails here, but the beers were great with the chili, you really need beer rather than spirits to deal with the heat I find. We got a selection of random bits (I forget what) but they were all fantastic and we were pretty much licking the plates. Really lovely vibe too, the cave like interior made it really cozy yet cool - the night we went it was a stuffy 18 degrees outside. This place does brunch too, which we are definitely trying out next time.


Have you been to New York? Where did you eat that you wish you could go back to right now?


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