GOOD EATS NYC 2023 (A Blanket Thread)

i’ve always wanted to go on the berry bbq trail but my wife doesnt care for most lamb preps so I have a slight concern we drive 13.5, she takes one bite, spits it out and we find ourselves in…kentucky :joy:

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Just days ago, Helen Rosner gave Foxface Natural a very good review in The New Yorker. And, this week in the NYT, Pete Wells reviews Foxface Natural and gives it 3 stars & a hearty endorsement. Couldn’t happen to nicer people (think that’ll get me in again?).


Yep, interesting review — Especially the point about the owners not having to kowtow to typical demands (burger on the menu!). But of course even if you have the means to ignore those demands, not everyone has the taste and good grace that the Foxface duo so clearly have in plenty.

Coincidentally, the wife and I were there late on Saturday evening, and they were talking about how nervous they are over the impending reviews. Obviously there wasn’t any need to be!

It was our third time at the place, and nevertheless we didn’t repeat a single dish we’d eaten before. Tried the pascaline (which the New Yorker review waxes eloquently about), the grilled red snapper, the purple clams, and the stuffed pasta with broth. All hits, no misses. Even the timur pepper gelato at the end was amazing.

Truly special place.


Separately, I also tried Lula Mae for the first time this weekend. Sadly, it didn’t hit the spot for me.

The service felt hectic, rushed and impersonal; the vibe was what I call ‘generic Brooklyn’, and I didn’t think the price-to-quality ratio was up to par.

We started with a couple of cocktails — one was a take on a mezcal sour, which was too sweet, and the other was the day’s special: an unbalanced take on a whiskey sour.

We then had the beef carpaccio, which was good, but not outstanding. The fried chicken two ways was fine; we liked the tamarind sauce version better than the dry rubbed one. But again, didn’t blow us away (I wished for Peking House or Rowdy Rooster at that moment). The Grilled Bok Choy was just a regular stir fried dish that we make a better version of at home. The crab fried rice was also fine, but we make better fried rice at home.

We weren’t in the mood for dessert, and didn’t try the wine. To be clear, nothing was big B bad. It was all middling and uninteresting. Won’t return.

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I followed – for the most part – your worthy footsteps today. My first experience here was actively bad, possibly because of my focus on offal then.

Guided by you, I swung the other way this time and can confirm that the cauliflower is very good, as is the “Jambalaya”. I found the eggplant a little too aggressively garlicky for the thin layer of eggplant, but it worked when folded into the rice. I had the lamb version of the beef dish you mention, and I agree that the thick onion content is high. One further thing I had turned out to be a star: it’s called grilled croaker, but it was a crisply deep fried whole fish – startled, gaping mouth and all. You have to crunch through the smaller bones and work around the bigger ones, but the flesh was surprisingly moist and well worth it.

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my son’s gf is vegetarian and he chose a vegan chinese restaurant, spicy moon, for his birthday dinner. Cute place, crowded, one of three spicy moons in manhattan, nice vibe, great service but i was just bewildered by the food.

dan dan noodles - bland, why not take a page from good dan dan noodles, amp up the spice level and add some bok choy?

general tso’s mushrooms - nicely breaded and fried mushrooms in a thick, cloying sauce.

cumin tofu - good well-spiced dish

fried eggplant - dunno, nothing chinese about this dish, was more like fish stick coating eggplant.

kung pao - theres an authentic szechuan prep served at places like szechuan garden, there’s a horrible chinese american version, this was neither.

here’s what i don’t understand, why not serve vegan versions of classic chinese vegetable dishes? instead of breaded, fried eggplant, how about eggplant with garlic sauce? or go ahead, serve chinese american food but get the flavor profile correct. or make up new names for dishes and don’t name them after dishes we’ve all had.

they are obviously successful, who’s eating this food? perhaps vegans from places without good chinese restaurants? as i said, i’m bewildered.

From my observations, people don’t become vegan in search of good food. They make that choice for other reasons. And so once you’ve decided that, taste becomes secondary consideration in food. Its not that you can’t have good vegan food since as you’ve noted, there are plenty of Asian cuisines that have vegan dishes. But some of my vegan acquaintances wear their status as a badge of honor and taste of food is almost beside the point.

My kosher friend, and me, when I can’t get him to Ja Ja Ja. They have a hotpot special which is pretty good.

why not bring your kosher friend to a good chinese restaurant and order vegetarian dishes?

Because he’s the kind of kosher that won’t eat in a restaurant that serves traf. And I won’t go to a kosher steakhouse like Wolf and Lamb because they’re stupid expensive.

a long time ago, in a galaxy far away, i ate at Buddha bodai and thought it was pretty good. i had an orthodox jewish wall st client, dinner for 12 with wine at a kosher steakhouse was frighteningly expensive.

I’ve done dinners at Le Marais when we needed a kosher steakhouse. I didn’t think the prices were that different than any other steakhouse. A bit more for the steak. But the wine list was pretty tame compared to what I usually see so that offset the higher steak prices. Not a cheap night but not very different than any other client dinner. Where did you go?

This is the actual definition of a shonde.

our client liked talia, it was both expensive and nowhere as good as the top non-kosher steakhouses: