Browsing Tag:

east village

American Traditional/ brunch/ nyc

North River: Belly Doughnuts and More

After reading a Zagat snippet about weekend brunch at North River titled “If you’re looking to be bad”, I was enticed to go check out the “belly doughnut“. What exactly does this donut entail? Slow-cooked pork belly, miso, coconut flakes, and brown sugar. It was awfully delicious, and a perfect example of how sweet and savory can work together to delight your tastebuds.

North River is a new addition to the East Village, serving traditional American dishes with small twists (e.g. shrimp pad thai tacos). Started by Culinary Institute of America alumni Colby and Sarah Zito, and Adam Starowicz as chef, you’ll find their culinary backgrounds in places like Momofuku Ko, Mas (farmhouse), Maialino, etc. matches how good the food tastes. The recently opened for brunch, which is the meal I went for, and I found it to be delectable.

The scrambled eggs were perfectly soft cooked, incorporating smoked salmon, cream cheese, and dill in it. It’s exactly how you would imagine good scrambled eggs would taste like – bits of salty with creamy and fluffy texture of the eggs – served with potatoes. If I had this every morning, I would be a very happy worker.

Spicy chicken sandwich served with lettuce, tomato, mayonnaise and french fries was good. Nothing particularly exceptional about it, but that’s what made it good. Simple and straightforward.

With what I experienced at brunch, I intend on going back to experience dinner and happy hour. Of course, I’ll also want another order of the belly doughnut please.

North River
166 First Avenue (near 9th Street)
New York, NY 10009
(212) 228-1200

American Nouveau/ dinner/ nyc

Degustation Wine & Tasting Bar: Delicious and Datey

I have been asked by my guy friends lately, “where should I take a date?” There are many options in this city, but I want to focus on one of them – Degustation Wine & Tasting Bar. I was not only blown away by the food, small bites indicative of the restaurant name, but also the intimate setting whilst sitting in front of the open kitchen. With a reasonably priced prix fix menu, 5-course for $55 and 10-course for $80, this place is definitely worth scoring a reservation.

Note: This post will be full of pictures, so make sure to scroll down!

We started with an amuse bouche, which were small bites of goodness. One of these bites was a small pocket of cheese that oozed in the mouth.

Crudo of Hamachi, light, tender, and fresh. Definitely ate this in one bite.

This was their sea urchin and sunchoke panna cotta. The soft texture of the panna cotta with sea urchin melded so well together where I wish I had another one.

I can’t remember what this is but hey, this was very good.

The combination of textures in this dish made it outstanding.

Bite sized but well-fried.

Soft cooked egg…and it’s as good as it sounds and looks. I definitely ate this in 30 seconds.

Foie gras terrine with spring onion and citrus marmalade. The layers of meat with nicely toasted bread was well matched with the citrus.

Oxtail and potato cannelloni, crisp salad, and herb salad and was light and al dente. Oh yes I want more.

Red wine braised short ribs with baby carrots and bruleed cippolini. Seared so nicely and was very tender.

The first dessert portion…

Caramelized torija with grapefruit. Delicious in all the right ways: pudding-esque and not too sweet.

It was definitely a great experience provided the great food, wine, and company (happy birthday Joanne)! Degustation Wine & Tasting Bar is definitely operating top of their game, making it a perfect restaurant to bring someone you care about.

Degustation Wine & Tasting Bar
239 E 5th St
(between 2nd Ave & Cooper Sq)
(212) 979-1012

American Traditional/ brunch/ lunch/ nyc

Motorino – Perfectly Made Pizza

Motorino has been on my list of pizza places to try around the city, and I finally had a chance to go! I somehow always managed to forget to make a trip there considering S’Mac is right next door. Anyway, good thing I ventured there because I got to sit down immediately on a Sunday at 1:30PM versus waiting for those restaurants with massive crowds for brunch.

This here is a beautiful and delicious pizza – their Pizza Al’Uovo which is only available on Saturdays and Sundays. It translates into “egg pizza” and boy is it good. Not only does it have a soft cooked farm egg on each slice, but also¬†fior di latte, chili oil, basil, and pecorino. Everything comes together nicely. As you bite into the slice, you taste the egg yolk oozing and paired with the saltiness of bacon and pecorino, how can you resist? Talking about it makes me want some more…

Alongside the previous pizza, I decided to order their Margherita as a sample for how good a NY pizza truly is. After all, if you can’t this pizza right then how can make any other pizza good? Well, they sure passed the test. The simple toppings – tomato, mozzarella, basil – were all very fresh. The proportion of tomato to mozzarella to basil was perfect. Their dough is really what is most impressive: slightly chewy but not doughy, and not burnt. Oh how I want another slice…

Again, Motorino is definitely worth checking out and eating at. Best $15 you’ll spend on a pizza!

Motorino East Village
349 East 12th Street
New York, NY 10003
(212) 777-2644