Wednesday, 26 October 2011


R and I love food but not like some of our friends, who plan their entire trip around where they're going to eat (I guess we're not acclaimed foodies, but we do appreciate good food). We always welcome recommendations for places to eat when we travel, but we rarely plan our trips around specific restaurants--unless of course there's somewhere we're just dying to try.

Unlike last year when R and I went to New York, this time around we didn't make any plans as to where we'd dine (in the past, we've made reservations at both Four Seasons and Sushi Samba). Despite this, we managed to enjoy a few great places on a whim, from Korean barbecue and inexpensive, yet delicious Thai food to oysters in Williamsburg and a quick lunch at Fanelli's in Soho. Here are the goods:

Burger and Rice Set with Egg
Prime and Beyond / what: an American steakhouse with an Asian twist? / where: East Village / what we ate: R enjoyed the Wet Aged NY Striploin, while I opted for the Beef Bulgogi Rice Bowl (really delicious) / what to try: they're known for their 'Super-Size Steaks', so I'd try one of these next time around (shared, of course)--the Key Lime Pie with a cheesecake-like consistency and very little crust is also good / what we love: it could totally work as a tapas restaurant--check out the menu, share plates anyone?

Beef Noodles
Republic / what: healthy, nutritious, and reasonably priced Asian cuisine boasting flavours from Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand, Japan, and China / where: Union Square / what we ate: R had the Spicy Seafood Soup (rice noodles with shrimp, squid, scallops, and catfish in a broth with scallions, bean sprouts, and shallots) and I had the Seafood Pad Thai (rice noodles, shrimp, and squid with loads of veggies, tamarind, and peanuts)--we shared the Flan for dessert / what to try: I would definitely return to Republic and if I did, I would order the Spicy Duck in broth / what we love: on top of having great prices, the portions are well-sized (lots for leftovers for the next day's lunch) and we can't forget the communal seating!

'Le Grand Maison'

Maison Premiere / what: a cocktail and raw bar tucked away (almost) like a secret / where: Williamsburg, Brooklyn / what we ate: we dined with my brother, who just so happened to be in the city and with a good friend of his--the four of us enjoyed Le Grand Maison, a three-tier platter of seafood, which included oysters, clams, scallops, crab, shrimp, and lobster (it was absolutely divine) / what to try: I think we tried it all? / what we love: it's just a raw bar--don't expect to order a side of pasta or to even get a bread basket (seafood lovers unite).

The dessert counter at Fabiane's: cheescakes, Black Forest Cakes, mousses,
creme brulees, pastries.
Fabiane's Cafe and Pastry Shop / what: an American bakery with (almost exclusively) gluten-free desserts / where: Williamsburg / what we ate: after dinner at Maison Premiere, we ventured down the street to Fabiane's where R ordered the Carrot Cake (which was more like an orange spice cake with some carrots) and I tried the Gluten-Free Black Forest Cake, which had a good consistency and light, fluffy frosting / what to try: any of their desserts--the selection is vast! / what we love: that the cake slices are actually mini cakes (kind of like the ones you made as a kid in your Easy Bake Oven)--cute!

Fanelli's in Soho
Fanelli's Cafe / what: a quaint cafe serving up cheap pub grub / where: Soho / what we ate: R ordered the omelette with fries and I the clam chowder--both delicious / what to try: the Pumpkin Ravioli with Alfredo Sauce? I don't know, it sounds good / what we love: it was a good, quick meal to recharge during a day of shopping.  

Other good eats we stumbled across were at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden's Terrace Cafe, where R enjoyed the Roasted Turkey Ciabatta with Pesto Mayo and I, a wholesome bowl of Chilli with Beef Sirloin and Multigrain Bread.

Okay, now I'm hungry.

Do you have any favourite places to eat in New York or other cities you like to visit?

images via yelp, prime and beyond, republic, and maison premiere

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