Friday, August 5, 2011

A Bite of the Big Apple

One month ago today, I moved from New York City. In honor of this special date, and because my mouth is currently watering for some eats that one can only find in the City That Never Sleeps, I've rounded up my favorite NYC restaurants. I must be honest that as often as I wanted to try something new, I would also go back to what I knew was divine, leaving many of New York's finest off the list. Many of these are my tried and true, the spots that I loved to love.

Best French:
And by French, I mean steak frites. Jeff and I fell in love with this bistro meal at Pastis, and hunted for the best all over the city. There is nothing like a tiny wooden table, a carafe of wine, and a plate piled high with crispy fries, a juicy steak, and out of this world bearnaise sauce. So far, I haven't found any french bistros in Boise, which means I'm going to have my make my own someday!

15 John Street 
411 Park Avenue South

Pastis
9 9th Avenue

Best eclectic NYC:
My brother introduced me to Cafe Gitane when I was still in college and in New York for a visit. I love the creative menu, how tiny the restaurant is (all the food is made in a nook the size of my kitchen table), and that you feel so deeply like you're in the New York City of the movies when you're there. Not to mention that it's a favorite of stars like Ryan Gosling and Josh Hartnett.
242 Mott Street

Best burger:
I never made it to Five Napkin Burger, which has been hailed by many as the best burger in the city, but I managed to eat Shake Shack frequently enough to stand by my choice. Now, I should specify that I'm not talking huge, intense burger. As an In-N-Out lover, I'll take my burgers small, as long as they pack a good punch. I love Shake Shack's potato bun, crinkle cut fries, and flavor of the day concretes. The original Madison Square Park location also takes it up a notch. Some of my favorite memories are standing in line, watching kids and dogs play, feeling my tummy grumbling as the line inches forward, anticipating happiness.

Madison Square Park/Madison Avenue at 23rd Street

Best sushi:
Jeff and I were wandering through the East Village one night, in search of sushi. We happened upon Takahachi and never looked back. With interesting rolls that change daily, a great energy, and reasonable prices, it's a sushi lover's dream.

85 Avenue A

Best casual:
Grey Dog is the perfect spot for a sandwich (and a beer or glass of wine if you're so inclined) and some good conversation. The menu is simple but extensive, and always has that one thing you're craving.
90 University Place
242 West 16th Street

Best ambiance:
Barmarche is New American (and delicious), but the vibe of the restaurant is Old Hollywood meets grandma's house. The walls are lined with mirrors and chandeliers, the counter tops covered with candles, and the booths can fit all your friends.
14 Spring St #A 

Best seafood:
I'm not a huge seafood fan, probably in part because I rarely order it and never cook it at home, but I knew I had to go here before I left New York. It was wonderful. All of the food was fabulous, good enough for me to actually look forward to ordering fish the next time I was out, and the restaurants sang comfort.

96 2nd Avenue 

Best all around:
Freeman's is fantastic. The food is delicious, the wine is great, and you feel like you're in someone's home having a dinner party. There is much more to say except that you should go there, immediately, and enjoy.

191 Chrystie Street/End of Freeman's Alley off Rivington between Bowery and Chrystie


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