I should mention that they came in very hot plates, so you could hear them sizzling, like angels singing to my ears... These steaks were delicious and the first bite, as well as the subsequent ones, were divine: the meat was tender and juicy, with a nice char on top, and a slight hint of kosher salt. The ribeye was deliciously fatty and paired perfectly with the glass of Pinot Noir I ordered.
Bourbon and Cheese: that would make plenty of my compatriot yell sacrebleu just thinking about it! Yes, we are more accustom to drink wine with cheese, red, although I heard few sommeliers recommend white, because red wine can be too aggressive, while white can complement. The cheeses were presented by Max McCalman, a reference in North America who has the precious title of Maître Fromager (Cheese Master), given by France's Guilde des Fromagers.
It was composed of lettuce (too much of it, I ended up removing some, but I admit that I am not a huge fan of it in a burger anyway), tomato, onion, bacon, aged cheddar and chipotle mayo (perfect: I always add mayo to my burger). The menu said that there were crispy onions, but they were nowhere to be found.
Bareburger, the famous organic burger chain, opened a little over a month in Hoboken, following the path of Boardwalk Fresh Burgers and Fries. It definitely starts to crowded on Washington street, if we take into account not only these two restaurants, but also Five Guys and the multiple bars that serve signature burgers.
There, they follow the philosophy of its owners: sustainability. No frozen food or microwaves, beverage coasters that are 100 percent biodegradable and recyclable, made only with timber from reforestation programs; at lunch, recycled brown butcher paper covers each table to reduce laundry costs and water waste. But is the food good? That is what we would discover there.
There, restaurateur Shmulik Avital and Executive Chef Dario Tapia (formerly at Westville and Maison Kayser - that promises some great pastries), crafted an international menu with Mediterranean influences. The name is an homage to Sam Spiegel, the film producer known for movies like Lawrence of Arabia, On the waterfront or The Bridge on the River Kwai, Shmulik being a huge old movie fan.
One of their bento boxes, that came with a salad that would have been boring if not for the sesame seeds on top that added a nice nutty flavor. What I like is that you pick the food that will go in the bento box, each time between two choices. For instance, chicken or salmon teriyaki; California or spicy tuna roll.
Opened in 1993 by Lidia and Joe Bastianich, Becco is one of those Italian restaurants where your palate will transport you miles away, on a culinary trip that you will never forget. Reservations are necessary for this hotspot located in restaurant row, in the heart of the Theater District. Becco means beak in english, hence the bird on their logo.
This time, I was at Quality Meats, a steakhouse located Midtown, part of the empire of Alan Stillman who also owns Smith & Wollensky. There are plenty of items in the decor to remind you where you are, whether it is the cow head or white tiles representing a slaughterhouse, to the bulbs held by butcher hooks.
To give you a bit of history of this place, let's go back to 2007, when the adventure started. At that time, Nargis Café was a tiny place, that slowly expanded over the years, taking over a flower shop (interesting considering that Nargis means flower), and later, a dry cleaning. The place can now accommodate, with its terrace, close to 150 guests. We went on a Friday night and it was packed, with lots of people waiting outside in a very good atmosphere.
The menu is New American with some staples like the burger, the short ribs or the pulled pork sandwich, as well as some interesting dishes as you will see in this post. They also serve sushi, sashimi and rolls.
The first time we went, Jodi ordered the mozzarella panino, a succulent vegetarian sandwich made with mozzarella, tomato, arugula and pesto.