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Tag: 4

Cho Dang Gol Korean Restaurant

Busy Korean BBQ spot off of 34th.

What We Had

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Galbi – Marinated short rib Korean-style BBQ. Show stopping. Korean BBQ is pretty much always good, but this was better than that. Instead of being almost too sweet like at most places, the sweet was balanced and tempered here.

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Stone Bowl Bibimbap with Pork. This dish was fantastic. Crispy rice, really flavorful ingredients, and a great balance.

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CDG Dumplings – Hand made meat & tofu dumplings, steamed. Good flavor large dumplings.

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Great little sides – some sort of cooked zucchini, Kimchee, a Kimchee-like non-vinegary squid & cucumber something, some sort of greens, little dried shrimp, tempura mushrooms, and some sort of pancake.

Decor

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Korean flavored, but lots of neutrals and woods.

Service

Not terrible for a really busy day.

Overall Impressions

A great find. The day we visited was crazy busy, with a large majority of the patrons being Asian. We took that as a good sign, and we weren’t wrong.

This place has lots of menus in different textures and materials. For the uninitiated, the takeout menu features a QR code that can be scanned with a smart phone to view a visual version of the dishes.

Rating

4 out of 5 for a fabulous meal that was fun to eat.

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Pok Pok

Authentic Thai from a round eye chef in Willisburg.

What We Had

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Da Chom’s Laap Meuang – deceptively spicy and yet comforting ground pork dish.

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Muu Kham Waan – our favorite and crazy flavorful sliced pork with greens on ice for a wrapper.

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Papaya Pok Pok – I loved – great representation of the dish; my DH not so much. I was addicted.

Sticky Rice – awesome in any context, but amazing here.

Drinking vinegar – must have more; where has this been all my life?

Thai tea with lime – also great

Some sort of hot bourbon thing that was the best type of restorative.

Decor

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Tiny dining room with minimal wood paneled decor

Service

Standard

Overall Impressions

Spicy meal but very very good.

Rating

4 out of 5 for great authentic dishes with loads of spice

Bareburger

Bareburger

“Healthy” burger bar with locations throughout NYC. We visited the Park Slope location.

What We Had

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I had the Roadhouse Burger (pepperjack, roasted red peppers, avocado) with elk on a tapioca rice (gluten free) bun.

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My DH had the Maple Bacon Burger (maple bacon, sharp cheddar) with bison on a brioche bun.

Both burgers had great taste, were juicy, and were wholly satisfying. My bun was also great.

Decor

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Lots of bright colors and Scooby Doo on the TV.

Service

Not terrible.

Overall Impressions

I can’t really argue with this place’s ethos – grass fed everything; buffalo, boar, elk & ostrich on top of beef, poultry & vegetarian options. Gluten free & paleo friendly. This place represents one of the very best compromises in my DH and my eating styles – it’s a burger joint, which he loves, but a burger joint with slightly less horrible for you options, which I need in my life.

I can take exception with the screaming gaggle of children that finally, mercifully, left after holding the door open so every shred of warmth escaped the building – sometime after the onset of unruly child-induced headaches set in. But, it is a burger joint, and it is in mommy-drone central, so that just has to be worked around. We have since been back and the children weren’t as cringe-inducing in subsequent visits.

Rating

4 out of 5, despite the screaming groups of children.

Chai Thai

Pan-Asian with a Thai bent in Williamsburg.

What We Had

I had the Chiangmai Noodles – chicken curry northern style with egg noodles — chicken so deeply flavored it almost tasted like pork – fall apart, intense. Fantastic dish – pleasantly spicy, great flavors. Perfectly just underdone noodles.

My DH had the Pad See Ew – Great wok hay, perfectly cooked chicken. A real knockout dish.

Unfortunately, the pictures of these two dishes didn’t turn out. Suffice it to say, they were delicious.

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We also had the peanut something dumplings #5 – sweet, peanutty, could have done with a touch more acid, but still good.

Decor

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Cool interior – contemporary Asian with great organic flow. Lots of dark woods, organic shapes, and hard-edged decor pieces. A well put together, thoughtful atmosphere.

Also, really interesting upbeat lounge covers through the speakers. According to Yelp, cover music is sort of a big deal here, and it shows.

Service

On the slow side.

Overall Impressions
This is a great spot for a quiet weeknight dinner and would make a good place to dine with friends. the menu is inventive, the music is a conversation piece, and the decor is cool without being obtrusive. The prices are also surprisingly reasonable and the portions are generous.

Rating

4 out of 5 for PFG food. This spot was a great find.

Taqueria de Los Muertos

Taqueria de Los Muertos

Tacos just off Prospect Park.

What We Had

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I had 3 tacos: turkey with mole, tongue with tomatillo and pork with spices.

Great turkey – really nice spice. Good tongue – tender and well seasoned with a bare hint of wild and orange.
Decent pork – a little sweet but tons of spice.

These tacos were huge; 2 was more than enough.

My DH ordered the burrito with chicken, but received a burrito with steak. he wasn’t came out as steak, but it was really flavorful. Huge.

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We also ordered chips & salsa. The chips were fresh and unsalted; the salsa was chunky and bright. We both drowned everything in heaps of salt, lime and Chaula.

Decor

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Cute decor – very open for a tiny space, cafe feel, lots of sugar skulls.

Service

Not bad for such a casual eatery.

Overall Impressions

This is a great little find. Solid tacos, huge burritos, and a pleasant walk from the park.

Rating

4 out of 5 for an easy, relaxed time with surprisingly good food.

Fonda

Gourmet Mexican with a laid-back vibe in Park Slope.

What We Had

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My DH had the Enchiladas de Mole Negro Oaxaqueno – Corn tortillas filled with braised chicken and topped with black mole, onions, cream, queso fresco, cilantro & sesame seeds.

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I had the Pollo Norteno – Achiote marinated chicken tossed with chihuahua cheese and topped with Serrano chiles and pickled red onions. Served with tortillas.

Both dishes had tons of flavor and really well balanced fat to salt to savory to spice ratios. Both were deep, complex, and kept us going back for more even after we were full.

The Mole was the mole you never get in non-gourmet Mexican restaurants – it was deep, complex, rich and totally bonkers. A must-get on any visit.

The black charro beans and Mexican rice sides were amazeballs. Crazy amounts of flavor in both. I could happily down half a pint of each and call it dinner. Really something special.

The only dish misstep was a tiny piece of bone left in my chicken. Whomever chopped the chicken that day must have gotten a little carried away with the cleaver. Not a huge deal, just a small caution.

Decor

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Tasteful and streamlined.

Service

Decent. Friendly.

Overall Impressions

This is a great place to go if you’re craving Mexican but not tacos (though mine was basically tacos). The only minus was no auto table chips, so no house salsa. I had habanero salsa geared up in my mind (our favorite gourmet Mexican spot in Miami had the best habanero salsa ever) and my mouth was sad I didn’t get any. My stomach, not so much. We ate more than enough as it was.

Rating

4 out of 5 for outstanding flavors in a grown-up atmosphere.

Elora’s

Mexican eatery a few blocks off of Prospect Park (near the F stop)

What We Had

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I had the carnitas. This pork was crazy good – and a huge portion. It was so good, being too full to finish was depressing.

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My DH had the Chimichanga w pork. His dish was huge as well, with really good flavors – not quite the orgy of yumminess mine was, but still faboo.

Fresh beans, even good rice.

Nice fresh, bright table salsa with homemade chips.

Décor

Minimal decor

Service

Friendly service

Overall Impressions

This is a great little place. Nothing fancy, but good. Next time, we will either consider splitting the pork or make sure it’s our last stop so we don’t have to schlep leftovers all over the city.

Rating

A solid 4 for great (huge) food in a welcoming atmosphere.

Eats On Lex

Well-reviewed American bistro near the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

What We Had

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We started with two Asian Fried Oysters – These oysters gave a really nice bite with a great (not overpowering) fried taste and fresh little palate cleansing salad. I would recommend, even for diners on the fence regarding the issue of oysters.

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We were also brought crusty table bread with a clever little roasted garlic hummus spread.

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And just because we couldn’t resist (and because the Museum had sapped so much energy we feared we were near death), we ordered the Tableside Steak Tartar. This dish was really, really good. I had forgotten just how much I love tartar when it is prepared well, which this was.

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My entree was the Bricked Free-range Cornish Hen – OMFG, this dish was fantabulous. Crispy skin, succulent meat, all the right spices – a triumph. The accompanying mash and roasted veg were just the thing to sop up the imminently drinkable pan sauce dressing.

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My DH had the Dry-aged Steak House Burger – This was one of the best burgers either of us had eaten in quite awhile (excluding the Pat la Freida patties we bought from Fresh direct).

Décor

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Bistro – clean blacks & whites.

Service

Fair.

Overall Impressions

A great find. We happened to be at the museum and at the end of our collective ropes when my DH stumbled upon a good review on Google. Thanks, Google, this really hit the spot.

Rating

4 out of 5 for quality food in a nice atmosphere. A touch pricey but not bad at all – just enough to keep them from a 5.

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Great NY Noodle Town

Little hole-in-the-wall noodle joint in Chinatown.

What We Had

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My DH had the Roast Pork and Wonton Noodles Soup – This soup had some of the best Chinese-style pork either of us have yet eaten. The wontons were good, but the pork was the real star here.

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I had the Roast Duck and Noodles In Soup – The duck tasted great, but be forewarned that the meat is cleaver-chopped and includes bone fragments. Eat with caution.

Both bowls had deeply flavored broth (his had a fish base; mine had duck base), and the noodles were fresh and expertly prepared.

Décor

Nothing fancy, mostly white walls with menu items and mirror.

Service

About what one would expect. Perfunctory. Stink eye-free, even though we were the only ’round eye’ table in the joint for much of our meal (a good sign, to be sure).

Overall Impressions

This is a great place to grab a really cheap, good bite any time of day and into the wee hours of the morning. Be prepared; the restaurant accepts cash only.

Rating

4 out of 5 for great pork & comforting noodles.

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Birdsall House

Cute little modern American local/seasonal joint in Peekskill. The kind of place when hearing I’d be near town, my good friend that lives there immediately thought ‘I have to take her there.

What We Had

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The DH and had gone hiking that afternoon and were so starving we thought we might die. We ordered the Charcuterie starter – triple cream cheese, pork & barleywine sausage with house mustard, and duck & cider sausage with caramelized apples. Yum all around. Killer sausages, really good cheese.

We also had a red cheddar-like cheese with light stink that came as an option for the brunch item. This was also a nice offering.

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I had the Goat Cheese En Croute – roasted zucchini, yellow squash, portobello mushrooms & goat cheese baked in puff pastry with Dijon cream & mescalun salad. The first half of this dish was really good, but I got really tired of the croute portion about halfway through. Maybe it’s me and my general lack of eating too-rich foods very often lately, but I would have liked twice the veg and half the croute.

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My DH had the Blackened Shrimp & Grits – Mascarpone wild hive soft polenta with blackened shrimp, collard greens, Cajun cream and house made smoked andouille. This dish was fantabulous and I am jealous I didn’t order it. Though to be fair, the DH did find the polenta itself in the underseasoned side and if memory serves, he was salted out by the end.

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The friend had the Weekly Omelette (asparagus, goat cheese & sundried tomatoes) with hashed brown tart & mixed salad.

She ordered a fry substitution, but the dish came out with the tart anyways, and boy am I ever glad it did. That thick, creamy, lemony, thyme-y tart was the single best item of the day. It’s hard to top a good shrimp n grits, but this dish did it in spades.

The Fries (which came out shortly after) were great – the Birdsall House makes a killer honey mustard, and a really good home made ketchup. I would highly recommend getting both.

Décor

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Minimal but cute in an old bar sort of way. Really cute punky baroque bathroom.

Service

Serviceable. Nothing standout-ish either way.

Overall Impressions

Looks like the friend was right. This is exactly the type of place I love — local ingredients, homemade where possible, highlighted to their best ability. And home made charcuterie? Please. You’re preachin’ to the choir here.

Rating

4 out of 5 – if you’re anywhere near Peekskill, this is the place to be.