Joe’s Shanghai

A friend of mine and I have been making the effort lately to explore more of our great city. New York is known for it’s numerous incredible restaurants across a wide range of cuisines. With a variety of cuisines, it can be very easy to slip into a rut and continue to visit the same, comfortable places over and over again. Over the next few months, we are going to make an effort to branch out and explore new boroughs, new restaurants and really appreciate all the variety in this city’s restaurant scene.

We kicked off this “Dinner Club” with a visit to the Joe’s Shanghai location in Chinatown. This restaurant is an institution in New York, with the original location in Flushing, Queens. In addition to this original location, another location appears in Midtown as well. In order to fill our desire for more of an authentic experience, we decided to visit the location on Pell street.

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After walking into the restaurant, I was immediately caught off guard by a simple yet distinct element. This element happened to be the very unassuming dining experience. My initial shock sprung because many people have spoken highly of this establishment, leading me to except something completely different. Upon entering, you are greeted at the door by an aquarium full of very large coy fish. We were seated immediately, but once again found ourselves surprised when we were seated at a table with four other people.

The drink menu was hilariously limited to four different types of beer. But that was not the focus of the evening. The soup dumplings were the stars of the night. This signature dish is something I’ve dreamed about trying for a while due to its combination for two of my passions: delicious soup and carbs. My friend taught me the technique for slurping the hot broth out of the dumpling before biting into the pork inside. One of the pairs at our communal table only had two orders of the dumplings and beer but I didn’t judge them one bit for that choice – these dumplings were delicious!

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The dumplings were served first, as a first course perhaps. What followed was just as excellent, and it happened to be chicken fried rice and beef with peppers. The only reason I stopped eating before these plates were clear was because the sodium was really starting to make me bloat but that is the cost you pay when enjoying some fine Chinese food.

The service was quick, the atmosphere quirky and definitely a unique experience to have in New York.

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No Sad Desk Lunch For Me -Poke Kitchen 

As a food lover, most of my conversations with colleagues at work revolve around what I will be having for lunch. Yesterday, I had this experience as usual and instead of choosing between my usual options, my friend mentioned the Poke Kitchen. At first, I was skeptical. She described it as a Chipotle style Japanese fusion eatery. I am a huge fan of Japanese food and always intrigued by new things but could you trust a lunch spot with raw fish?



Right when you walk in the doors, there is a cart holding menus that you customize and pass to the employees to assemble your bowl as you choose. There is a choice of white or brown rice, vegetable toppings, choice of proteins, sauces and “crunchies”. I choose brown rice, lettuce, cucumber, edamame, avocado, spicy tuna, salmon, spicy mayo and some various crunchies for the top that I can’t really identify.


All of the ingredients were fresh and I felt very reassured about my raw fish for lunch choice. The avocado and tuna was mixed with soy sauce and I think that is what took this dish over the top.

I took the bowl back to my desk to enjoy and wow, I have found my new go-to lunch spot! The flavors together were incredible and even though I ate every bite, I did not feel stuffed or a food coma like I do sometimes after lunch.

I would highly recommend Poke Kitchen if you are looking for a delicious Midtown lunch. It was not the cheapest lunch I have had but I think you are paying for quality and I can appreciate that!


Yea, I definitely will be returning to this spot!

Dining al fresco at The Pavilion

 

The Summer in New York is difficult for many, many reasons but one of the city’s most redeeming qualities is eating al fresco (outside). Living in Union Square, I pass a stone pavilion in the middle almost everyday as I head towards the subway for work. Come summertime, this stone pavilion is transformed into a restaurant, aptly named The Pavilion. The restaurant opened in 2014, apparently to some controversy. It is only open seasonally, the website says from April 15th until October 15th but I think this year it opened much later than that.

Photo by - Cherie Cincilla

Photo by: Cherie Cincilla

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Mohonk Mountain House

After living in New York for 5 years, I still struggle with the concept of a “weekend trip” from the city. Without a car, I get a sense of anxiety from planning a trip for a weekend and feeling stranded. There are many places outside of the city in Upstate New York, Connecticut and New Jersey that are beautiful and easy to get to, but being there with just your legs to get around sometimes stresses me out.

When my boyfriend and I decided we wanted to go somewhere for Memorial Day weekend to get out of the city and actually see some nature, he did a lot of research and found Mohonk Mountain House. It was perfect for us because after a short cab ride from the Metro North train station, you did not need a car the entire weekend. Everything including restaurants, the spa, and hiking trails were all on the property.

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Seamore’s NYC – Come for the scene, stay for the fish tacos

When my friend was recently visiting from London, she wanted to go out to dinner with a few friends so she could see as many of us as possible while in town. I suggested Seamore’s because I had read about it in a few places and it seemed like a fun place to grab a bite. Most of the time, the restaurants I suggest are winners because I take my job as “the food friend” seriously. Seamore’s may be the exception.

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Let’s taco bout it

Anyone that knows me knows that I love to eat. Not in a gluttonous way but I appreciate good food and I always want more. Hence the name of this blog. This love of eating and cuisine is part of the reason I wanted to move to New York City. Assuming that there is no turnover among restaurants and one eats three meals a day, each one at a new restaurant, it would take approximately 22.9 years to eat at every restaurant in New York. To me, that sounds like a challenge.

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Therapeutic Grocery Shopping and Homemade Brunch

This morning, I left my apartment around 8:30am for the grocery store. For some people, they relax and recharge by being out in nature or surrounded by family and friends. For me, grocery shopping is the best therapy. Going to a nearly empty grocery store when the fresh produce is undisturbed is happiness to me. Even though New York is the “city that never sleeps”, Sunday mornings before 9:00am are pretty much the quietest time in the city and I take that opportunity to get out and get things done.

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