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Tag: 3

Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop

Noodles & rice bowls from acclaimed Ramen guru, Ivan Ramen. This is his first shop stateside.

What We Had

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Classic Shoyu Ramen
soy sauce, chicken + dashi double soup, pork chashu, rye noodle

Classic Shio Ramen
sea salt, chicken + dashi double soup, pork chashu, rye noodle

Yuzu Lemonade

Both ramen varieties looked the same and we had no idea which was which. Both tasted similar.

The noodles were nice and chewy; the broth was well flavored (though not as deeply flavored as our favorite joints – think a touch more delicate than Momofuku).

Not a bunch going on here, toppings-wise. A few pieces of chicken and pork and some strangely tasteless scallions. We both added egg, which was fine.

Overall meal impression was meh. Not bad, but we’ve had so much better.

Decor

Slurp Shop is located in the Gotham West Market – a large food courty type affair with 8 upscale food and grocery vendors, including The Brooklyn Kitchen. It’s an interesting place – very open concept.

Service

Counter service.

Overall Impressions

We won’t be making the long trek Gotham West Market is in Hell’s Kitchen on 11th in the mid-40s — far from our usual haunts special for ramen again. This was good, but not as good as our three favorites; and no where near as convenient to get to.

Rating

3 out of 5 for tasty but not overwhelming noodles in a space with a cool concept, but inconvenient location.

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Kittery

Seafood and more in Cobble Hill.

What We Had

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I had a whole steak and eggs thing planned from the old menu and had to roll with the punches to settle on the only thing that could be made Whole30 (paleo + no sugar) compliant – the 2 eggs any style dish. I dropped the home fries and toast, having just the eggs (which I ordered over medium), the side salad with decent balsamic, and I ordered a separate side of avocado. My meal was okay, though the eggs were completely hammered.

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My DH had the thick cut cinnamon French toast with a side of bacon – by all accounts, it was pretty good but not show stopping.

Decor

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We ate outside in the summer lobster themed dining space. It’s cute.

Service

So-so. They did what they could, but the food took about half an hour to start coming out to diners (we arrived shortly after opening and was the second table – three others arrived after us).

Overall Impressions

This was their first brunch service after rolling out a new menu and it showed.

Rating

3 out of 5 for a disappointing new menu (not as much variety or novelty – had we not seen the previous version, we would have eaten somewhere up the street) and so-so food.

Pop Pub

Graphics heavy pub near Union Square.

What We Had

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I had the Superman – 8 oz. beef burger with bacon, fried pickles, and sautéed onions – pretty great. The fried pickle/sauce/shredded lettuce combo ended up tasting like a grown up Big Mac. Nice thick and crispy bacon. Burger itself was dry. Onions were good.

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My DH had the Original Pop Burgers – 3 mini beef burgers with pop classics, which were fairly ok but dry. Could be because of the massive grill fire we saw raging right after our order was placed.

Side of fries – decent pillowy fries with fried coating.

Decor

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Lots of wood (like log cabin levels) and graphic design elements.

Looks like a fun atmosphere with upbeat music, lots of TVs on mute, foosball and loungy chairs.

Good beer selection.

Service

Semi attentive waitstaff.

Overall Impressions

Meh. Sinking into a comfortable lounger was great, and my burger toppings were great, but the meat was just too dry.

3.5 out of. 5 – we’ve had better and worse.

Update: I am amending my rating down to an even 3.0 due to further input from the DH.

Mexicali

Standard Mexican fare in Cobble Hill.

What We Had

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I had the Steak & Shrimp Fajitas – Everything was seasoned properly and the dish wasn’t too greasy. The shrimp was overcooked, but strangely, I kind of welcome rubber shrimp in dishes like this.

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My DH had the 2 tacos & 1 burrito combo – He got beef and chicken and everything was well seasoned.

Decor

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Minimal with an adobe mildly upper class vibe.

Service

Not bad.

Overall Impressions

Not the best, not the worst. Certainly edible and most likely repeatable.

Rating

3 out of 5 for decent “regular” Mexican food.

Watty & Meg

American pub-style food in Cobble Hill.

What We Had

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Cheeseburger Wontons with Truffled Ketchup – The cheeseburger filling was good, but that truffle ketchup is where it’s at. That stuff is amazeballs.

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I had the Free Range Chicken with Wild Rice Falls Mill Grits, Mustard Greens with Lemon & Honeycomb Lacquer – This dish sounds fabulous. It was decent. The chicken was nicely seasoned & cooked; and the veg was cooked well, though the lemon and honey weren’t present. I don’t remember liking or hating the “grits”.

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My DH had the 11 oz. New York Strip with Chimichurri, Mashed Potato & Crispy Onion Ring Frizzle – The steak tasted meh and was so pale as to be borderline offensive. Ok, it was pretty offensive. This dish was satisfactory at best – the meat tasted like it wasn’t prime, instead tasting like choice. A weird complaint, but a suspicion my DH couldn’t shake.

Great attention was however, paid to the sides – the potatoes were stellar and the frizzled onions were as good as it gets.

Décor

Blacks & creams open to the outside.

Service

Service was slack, but it wasn’t clear if they were just understaffed.

Overall Impressions

If we ever make it back, we would be interested in trying more sides (especially the Mac & cheese). The app was also good, so more of those would be in order.

Overpriced – appetizer was priced way over what it should be, that was not a $28 steak, and the chicken was on the pricey side but it was at least cooked properly and seasoned well.

Rating

3 out of 5. Decent, but we will forget we were ever here as soon as we leave, and if we end up here again, it will be for a side and a condiment.

Stir Crazy

Big chain (I’m guessing) Mongolian style BBQ & full Asian fusion menu in the Palisades Mall.

What We Had

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We started with the potsticker trio sampler – 2 each pork, lobster and chicken.

All three were winners. Nice and flavorful, prepared well with a bright little Thai style cucumber salad alongside to clean the palate.

This was accompanied by a trio of tasty sauces – coconut curry, fresh duck & ponzu.

[I’m guessing that by the time mine finally came out, I was too hungry for words. No picture.]

For a main course, I had the Thai BBQ Tacos On Parata (beef & chicken) – These were great, and that parata is addicting. The sauce on the beef was a touch sweet for my taste, but I was able to balance that out with lime. The chicken was better balanced out the gate.

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My DH had the Mongolian BBQ with chicken (aka Market Stir Fry) – We have sorely missed Mongolian BBQ over the past few years, having been spoiled by a glut of the stuff while living in NC. This wasn’t the very best rendition ever, but it certainly wasn’t bad.

Décor

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Wide open with kitschy oversized food sculpture hanging from the ceiling.

Service

Not the worst, but my food did take forever and a half to come out.

Overall Impressions

Not a terrible spot for mall food.

Rating

3 out of 5 for interesting flavor combos but clunky saucing.

Mirage Diner

Huge shiny old school diner (with liquor) in Gravesend.

What We Had

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I ordered the Roumanian Steak & Two Stuffed Mushrooms Combo, which came with soup, salad, potato and vegetable. I opted out of the salad, and took matzoh ball soup, broccoli and mashed potatoes.

The matzoh ball soup tasted like someone’s nanna was in the back making it – flavorful broth with that particular mouth feel only present with home made stock, lots of chicken, light matzoh balls – this was a satisfying cup of soup.

The Roumanian Steak (more familiar to me as vaco or flap steak) was tender but under seasoned – still tasty though, and surprisingly cooked to temperature (rare). The mushrooms gave me flashbacks to the “fancy” stuffed mushrooms my mother made when I was a child – mushrooms basically stuffed with a crab cake – moist and flavorful too-salty stuffing with small dice krab broiled in a large button mushroom cap. Too salty by half, but still yum. And it went downhill from there: the potatoes were real, but mealy, underseasoned and gross; and the broccoli was a sad little dish of watery steamed-to-death greenery better left as a garnish.

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Things did not improve with my DH’s dish. He ordered the Chicken Santa Fe Sandwich with fries – I’m not sure what was ‘Santa Fe’ about this sandwich — a badly cut and pounded sad breast of chicken cooked until bone dry and topped with cheddar cheese and limp bacon. At least the fries were good.

Our meal also came with a wide variety of generously-portioned table food: cole slaw, pasta salad, and an assorted breads basket (challah slices, whole wheat cranberry rolls, sesame sticks, and something I can’t remember). The slaw was ok (rather like KFC), and the pasta salad was another edible childhood throwback. Where’s the jello salad?

Décor

Very 80s – lots if hunter green and pink.

Service

Slower than molasses. Most of the black vested servers were bordering on retirement age; ours was not, but I think we expended his English and I have a feeling his youthful muscles were in high demand in the back.

Overall Impressions

These people are hell bent on stuffing you to the gills before you leave. If you walk out the door even remotely close to not collapsing into a food coma, it’s your own damn fault. And, with the crazy amount of dishes on the menu, everyone you know is liable to find something they want to eat.

This place also has crazy deals – There is a large specials menu with soup or salad, appetizer, entree & dessert for $19.

The clientele (at least during our visit) was in the over 60 category, which might just explain the lack of seasoning.

Rating

3 out of 5 for the tenderness of the steak and the selection. Don’t go for the chicken. Bring your own seasoning.