Saturday, March 6, 2010

Butter Lane

After our extremely satisfying meal at Caracas Arepa Bar we were all craving dessert. We decided that after sitting on our butts for such a long time, we should find something that was mobile and did not include sitting. The dessert truck it was then. However, after exploring for twenty minutes to no avail, it appeared that our quest had failed. But then, due to the fantastic Yelp! application on the iPhone, we were redirected to Butter Lane, a cupcake bakery only ten doors down from Caracas. It was warm and toasty as we entered, allured by the smells of icing and fresh cupcake. I ordered an Elvis, which was made up of banana cake, peanut butter icing and marshmallows. It was so good that Kaitlin decided to order one as well. Crystal ordered a chocolate ginger cupcake that was nowhere as good as the Elvis. I give Butter Lane a 8.6/10.

Caracas Arepa Bar

For me, a normal Friday night consists of hanging out with friends or playing video games. However, a special guest had come to town, so I was forced to leave my comfort zone. Crystal Germond was my camp counselor from when I was 5 to when I was 9. Even though it was a against camp rules, she was biased, and I was her favorite camper. She was also my favorite babysitter. Anyway, five years later, Crystal and her musician friend Kaitlin had come to town on their so-called "food pilgrimage." My mother suggested that I take them to the hip part of town, St. Mark's Place. After walking around for a considerable amount of time, we stumbled upon the Caracas Arepa Bar. This small restaurant was jam packed with people, but we managed to score a window table. The menu was loaded with tons of amazing items, such as empanadas, arepas and salads. However, you probably don't know what an arepa is. Don't worry, I didn't either. It is almost like a sandwich or a taco. It's basic definition is a floury piece of dough wrapped around whatever you order in it. We had shredded beef, plantains, chicken, beans, cheese and avocado. Even though the restaurant was tiny, somehow we didn't feel cramped. One of the perks of the meal was that a reporter from the New York Post came up to us and interviewed us. Check the Wednesday edition for our interview! Anyway, this meal was simply fantastic and it could not have been any better. I give Caracas Arepa Bar a 9.1/10.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Craft Bar

If one were to describe me, only one word would suffice. That word is homebody. Now, it is hard to believe that someone who writes about going out and eating despises to do that. However, I don't dislike eating out, I just don't like the whole process of going out. I hate finishing my dinner and having to sit there, and then I hate having to go home afterwards. Therefore, when about one week ago my grandmother invited me out to dinner, I was reluctant. At first I hesitated, but for my own social sake, I accepted. After all, it is not healthy for a thirteen year old to sit around and watch Lost for three hours straight. We decided upon Craft Bar, located on 19th street. We left fairly early, and ordered as quickly as possible, as a new episode of Lost was airing soon and I needed to catch up. We ordered sausage, fried oysters, anchovy buschetta and salad to start off with. The bruschetta was godly, as was the salad and sausage. While I am a huge lover of oyster, this oyster just felt off to me. It tasted just a bit too fishy. However, my entree made up for that. The seared steak tasted divine, and it simply melted in my mouth. However, it was not nearly as good as my dessert. Trust me, you have not lived until you have had a chocolates-sauce drenched brownie with banana ice cream and whipped cream. While some parts of the meal were better than others, this dinner made me want to leave my humble abode more and more, which does say a lot. I give Craft Bar a 8.6/10.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Beyond the Dish with Steve Fried

Recently my friend Max's dad, Steve Fried, started a web based TV show called Beyond the Dish. He interviews famous chefs and cooks their signature dishes with them. I love it for its quirkiness and comedy, and also for the genuine look it offers into the world of the celebrity chef and the food he or she makes. Here is the link.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Do Hwa/Oriole 9/Co.

Among the last three blog-worthy restaurants that I have eaten at, two have been in the city, and one has been in Woodstock. Some may argue that New York City has the best food in the country, while others say that country food has the most substance. I partially agree with both of those statements. Sure, New York has the best chefs, the most comforting food, and diners with the most advanced palettes. However, if you are looking for larger portions and a more comfortable setting, to the land of trees we go. I would like to compare the two city restaurant, Do Hwa and Co. to the country restaurant, Oriole 9.

Do Hwa is like Benihana, except much less tacky, and much, much better. However, it is also much more expensive. One of the perks of this feisty Korean joint is the opportunity to cook your own meat and vegetables. I marvel at the excitement and eagerness that I have when I hear that the meal will be interactive, even though I am given the option of cooking every night at home, given that I have finished my homework. While the meal is fresh and tasty, there is not much to say about the restaurant, as they were not doing the cooking. However, from previous experience, I can say that their salads and sides are pretty excellent.

Co. is as one passerby said; "very yuppie." While I don't know exactly what that means, I do know that the food was excellent. Co., is an Italian restaurant featuring basically only Pizza. While the food was great, I would have liked it if there was more to offer on the menu. I also greatly disliked the scene of the restaurant. It was super loud, people were getting hammered, and there were no kids sharing my plight. So, while I was allured by the food, I was turned away by the ambiance.

Oriole 9 is famous for its breakfast. With eggs, bacon, toast, sausage and pancakes, there is nothing you would not expect from a diner in New York. However, they also do more upscale dishes, like the Filet Mignon with truffled eggs and potatoes. I decided to try that. After having the most tender, juicy and well-prepared steak I had ever enjoyed, I felt that I had reached a state of inner nirvana only found when playing video games for ten hours. It was that good.

Overall, I must disappoint everyone, and call it as it was, a tie. New York is more lively and eating out is a better experience in my opinion. However, I truly believe that the quality of rural food is dominant. I recommend eating at all these places as they are excellent establishments.