WIAW on Lindsay’s Personal Food Tour

Hey ya’ll! It is my favorite day of the week, What I Ate Wednesday, thanks to the lovely Jenn over at Peas and Crayons (seriously go check all the posts out, you won’t regret it). I have had something very special planned for this day. Since my brother’s last day in town was Tuesday, I had planned on taking him and his friend on a personal food tour designed by me. I originally had wanted to take them on a Free Tours by Foot in the Lower East side since there are so many great foodie options, but instead on Sunday we went to brunch. I promised that I would make an epic, delicious food tour that would leave us dragging around. On top of having great food, the weather was perfection. It was so hot that I wish I hadn’t been wearing tights. Now lets get to my tour!

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First stop on the tour was Golden Steamer, which is located in Chinatown on Mott St. This local favorite, which was about a 4 and a half star on yelp, so you know it was going to be legit. The main focus of the store is steamed buns, which as you know are my favorite things in the world. They have many other options to pick from too. Classic dim sum items such as chung fung and steamed shrimp dumplings. You can either get steamed buns fresh or you can buy packages that you bring home to steam later. These contain 4 buns of whatever flavor of your choice. The best part about this place is that it is so freaking cheap.

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We started off splitting a pork bun, which was amazeballs. The pork inside was so tender and sweet from the BBQ sauce. This was probably my favorite bun that we tried. It was so soft. I definitely want to back for more of these because it was like a little cloud from the sky. Not to mention that it was like 1$. Thank god this is so far away because I would live off of these if I could.

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The second bun that we split was a red bean bun. It sort of tasted like frito bean dip inside a steamed bun. That was really interesting. I actually really enjoyed it. I tend to not like red bean paste things because sometimes it can get real funky, but this was surprisingly great. Still not as great as my pork bun, but it definitely was tasty.

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Oh the great egg custard bun. You are so hard to find always, but when I find you it is the tastiest thing I have ever had. While it is no pork bun, it is a good second. The creaminess of the egg custard goes along perfectly with the soft texture of the steamed bun. I wish I would have gotten some more of these for all of us to snack on during our walk or at least my huge trek later back to campus. Anyways so far we were 1/1 on going to a delicious, cheap, and foodie approved place. The shop is really small, which is why we had to eat all the buns standing outside. No shame.

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After our steamed buns, we headed over to Eldridge st in order to hit up the iconic Prosperity Dumpling over in Chinatown. This place is known for their super cheap dumplings with deals like 5 fried dumplings for 1$ (however this has now changed and it is 4 for 1$, but still such a good deal). They have other items on the menu like scallion pancakes, noodle soups, and other appetizers. However most people come here for the dumplings. The shop is incredibly small. There is barely any room to sit down. We were lucky enough to beat the lunch crowd, so we got to sit down and enjoy our dumplings.

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We ended up getting an order of the fried pork and chive dumplings to split. These were delicious. The outside was crispy in some spots and soft in others. It wasn’t too greasy. The dumplings were so hot, so they were really freshly cooked for us. The inside was delicious. The pork was mixed well with the chive. You could top the dumplings with three sauces, so we chose the no label dark sauce. My brother ended up shooting half of it across the table, but it eventually got onto the dumplings. It was like a sweet soy sauce for dumplings.

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We decided that we should be somewhat healthy and get steamed dumplings too. These were cabbage and pork dumplings. They were 10 for 2.75$, so still such a good deal. We had to wait a little bit longer for these since steaming takes longer than frying dumplings. These were so good. I was glad that we ended up getting a second order of dumplings. They were soft and packed with tons of flavor. It sort of reminded me of soup dumplings because when you bit inside the dumpling there was the juice from steaming the pork dumpling. We topped it again with the sweet sauce, which this time my brother didn’t spill. Winning. Off to the next place.

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Before we went to our next stop, we had to pit stop at the Bank of America because my smart little brother forgot to get any cash. This is the one problem with living in the city. There are too many cash only places in the city, so you always have to be prepared with having cash on you. Onwards to Cheeky’s Sandwiches, which is located in the Lowest East Side. This was New Orleans style place with tons of sandwiches.

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I ended up going with the Chicken sandwich, which pretty much looks like a little version of Whataburger’s famous Honey Butter Chicken Biscuit. However this one had fried chicken, buttermilk biscuit, cole slaw, and gravy. This was so good. The biscuit was tender, which went well with the crispy crunchiness of the chicken. The coleslaw was a nice mix to place on top because it wasn’t gross like normal coleslaw. We ended up splitting all the sandwiches by passing them around and having a few bites at a time of each sandwich.

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My brother’s friend ended up getting the beef sandwich, which was my favorite by far. It was braised short rib, horseradish sauce, arugala, cherry tomatoes, and served on challah bread. CHALLAH. This is seriously a Jew’s favorite menu item. It was perfection. I love anything served on challah, but when you combine brisket and horseradish sauce on top of it. OMG NOM NOM NOM. I definitely am going to go back here just to get this sandwich. It is totally worth the trek.

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My brother went with a classic choice of the oyster po’boy. He may have not been born in New Orleans like my older brother and I, but he knows good seafood when he sees it. These oysters were crunchy and delicious. It was a very simple sandwich in order to keep the main focus on the oysters, so it was topped with lettuce, tomato, and a spicy sauce. I really liked it, but the sauce was a little too much for me. He loved it though. He gobbled it down and kept trying to grab it from us when it was our turn to eat it. We had ginger brew with the meal too. My brother had a passion fruit one while his friend and I had pomegranate. They were really delicious with a nice kick of ginger. Afterwards we had to walk a while to let our stomachs rest.

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Next up on the tour was Prince St Pizza, which was located in Noho. It was your pretty basic mom and pop pizza shop that has had a ton of celebrities roll through this joint. I know this because the wall is decorated with famous people and the pizza shop workers. It was a really quick get your pizza and go kind of place. Luckily there were a few tables inside, so we could sit down and enjoy our pizza.

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We ended up just getting two slices of margherita pizza to split between the three of us. I mean just look at those slices. The shop is known for their homemade mozzarella, so we obviously went with something that used it as the star. The cheese was melted so great, so when you took a bite into the pizza it just pulled and became stringy from your mouth to the pizza. I was in a food coma at this point. It was a struggle to get the pizza in my body. Afterwards we trekked back to the Lower East Side, so I could take the kiddos to Yonah Schimmels Knish Shop. I ended up just getting some Knish’s to go for my date from the other night, but the kids ended up getting a cheese knish with apple. It looked really good. I’m not sure how they ended up cramming it all into their stomachs, but props to them.

Have an awesome Wednesday! I have to go to my lab soon, which will be pretty easy today since we are just doing stretching exercises and flexibility.

Have you ever been on a food tour?
Would you ever give your own tour? Where would you go?

Preserve24: A Boozy, Delicious Brunch

Hey ya’ll! It is Monday and my oh my am I tired. I had to be up at 6 am in order to go to the Bronx for a project that I am working on. I’m working on examining local school lunches at a Bronx school in order to see what the kids are actually eating and how we can improve the nutrition that the kids are getting. Today was just a practice run to see how everything would be done and how we would collect the data, but lets just say that what the kids ate was pretty interesting. Anyways on to fun things, such as New York’s infamous unlimited brunch. That is the only way to brunch I feel like. My brother, his friend, and one of my friends ended up heading over to Preserve24 in the Lower East Side for a delicious and epic brunch.

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Obviously we had to start off the meal with our drinks. As soon as we sat down all of us ordered unlimited mimosas. I thought it was a pretty good deal to just pay $15 for unlimited drink and then choose your entree, which could range from 11-20$. You had the option of getting sangria or mimosas. I personally like something light with my heavy meal, so I went with the mimosas. The waitress was the bomb. She kept these things flowing like no other, and even left a pitcher on the table (refilled every time that we ran out).

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Many people in the reviews on yelp and friends that we know told us that the truffle fries are a must get, so you know we were going to start out with that. We got it as an appetizer to split between the four of us. This was such a good decision. The truffle fries were cooked to perfection, so they were crispy yet not burnt. The parmesan cheese on the top was a nice addition. It melted all over the fries, so that they were evenly covered. I also liked that the fries were mixed with parsley because it gave it a nice flavor and freshness.

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My brother is a huge pastry fanatic, so we ended up going with a pastry basket as the second brunch appetizer to split between the four of us. It came with a chocolate croissant, a regular croissant, a chocolate chip chocolate muffin, and a banana nut muffin. All of the pastries were actually quite delicious, so I was happy that we got this. It was also served with a apple butter, which everyone put on the plain croissant. It was nice to get a taste of everything.

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My little brother and friend ended up getting the Croque Monster, which I thought was incredibly cute for a name. It came with pane de costa, smoked ham, gruyere, truffle fries, mornay, and a sunny egg. This was delicious. My friend let me have a bite of hers and I definitely would have gotten this for my meal. I love that it had the crunchiness from the fries and the toast, but the middle with the egg, cheese, and meat was soft. Every bite was a perfect combination of everything on the plate.

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My brother’s friend ended up going for the L.E.S. Sandwich. It was definitely a hard thing to decide what to eat as the main entree because all of these looked so good. This had a runny egg, a fried oyster, and and smoked bacon. Obviously anything with a fried oyster and smoked bacon is going to be some of the best tasting food you will ever have. This was no exception. I was in foodie heaven at this point. This sandwich was good. My brother and his friend ended up splitting both of their dishes, which I thought was pretty smart because there were so many items on the menu that looked amazing (she originally wanted to get the bacon waffle, but it was sold out at that time :(. )

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I have saved the best for last. My meal choice, which was the Lobster Benedict. Oh Preserve24, how I love thee. You are definitely one of the best dishes that I have ever had. I was in foodie heaven. The lobster was incredibly fresh and it went along great with the hollandaise sauce. The english muffins were toasted perfectly. I don’t usually gravitate towards Eggs Benedict, but I could not pass up something with lobster. I have a lobster weakness as you can tell from my last post. I definitely recommend getting this, especially if you are a lobster fan. You will not be disappointed and if you are doing the boozy brunch then you probably will feel pretty great at that moment too.

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God I could stare at that big plate of food forever. The best part was my friend and I were feeling really great from the mimosas, so we walked around the east village all the way to Union Square. From there we met up with her dad to go to the MoMA, and then we headed off to dinner at a thai place. Overall it was a pretty epic day of fooding, drinking, and exploring. I am head over heels in love with this amazing city. Now I’m off to go finish up the last of my school work for this week, so I can enjoy tonight and tomorrow with my brother.

Have you ever had an unlimited brunch?
What is your favorite breakfast food?

 

Lobster Joint: Date Night

Hey ya’ll! It has been a crazy weekend. My feet are still tired and I have about two more days to go with my brother, which I’m excited about because I have some fun things planned when I’m not in class or at work (this week I am going to be at PS 64 in the Bronx examining how school breakfasts and lunches are run, what the kids eat, and how much of each item choice is taken). Saturday was a pretty relaxed day because my brother and his friend ended up spending most the day at museums and going to Brooklyn. I was glad because unlike them I’m not on spring break, so I still had work to do. Saturday is meant for date night though, so I looked through my bookmark list on yelp and decided where I wanted to go. I have been craving lobster rolls so much lately, so I asked my wonderful date (in case he reads this – probably not though since I didn’t give him the URL) if he would be down for seafood. Luckily I am a really lucky girl and he said of course, so we decided to go to the Lobster Joint.

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The lobster joint is a cute, really cozy kind of place to go eat at. It is located in the Lower East Side, which is turning into one of my favorite foodie neighborhoods. There are so many great food spots to hit up (this is where I am taking my brother and his friend on the Lindsay guided food tour – it is going to be epic). Anyways this restaurant was placed a few shops down from the iconical Katz Deli, so it is pretty easy to find. The inside is really adorable.

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The entire menu is placed up on the walls, which I like because it is relatively easy to read. When you go into the restaurant, you order at the cash register and get a number. You can sit anywhere you would like to. The place was pretty packed at around 8 pm, so we ended up sitting at the bar, which I thought was nice because we could sit close to each other and actually talk privately. That is so hard to find in the city these days. The inside of the restaurant had a really cute nautical theme with lobsters and other sea themed items all over the place. The tables inside were high up picnic tables, which I thought made the Lobster Joint very kitschy. I was super excited for the food when we got there.

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Look at that plate of greatness. I went into lobster heaven. We ended up both going for the New England style lobster roll, which was just your basic lobster roll with mayo and celery. They had a ton of other options available such as the BLT lobster roll, which had avocado, mayo, bacon (Ummm yes, please sign me up for that one next time). I actually thought the lobster rolls were really decently priced because this whole plate of food was 17$, and if you are a lobster roll fan you know that they can run you about 20-25$. This was a pretty good deal since you got a lobster roll, a pickle, a ton of french fries, and some coleslaw.

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Look at that juicy, succulent lobster. It was definitely really good lobster. It wasn’t fishy at all, which is the worst when it is. It was mixed perfectly with the mayo and the celery. It is so horrible when there is too much mayo because who really just wants to eat a sandwich of pure mayo. No one. EVER. The bread was toasted to perfection. It wasn’t burnt, but it wasn’t soft. Overall this was definitely a pretty good lobster roll for my first official city roll. I will definitely be going on lobster roll adventures to test out all the other common places that there are to eat.

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Fries on fries on fries. I love french fries. It is one of my favorite fat kid treats to myself. Of course it was my cheat day/weekend, so I allowed myself to choose the fries over a salad for the side. They were actually really good french fries. The best part was that I got to eat the rest of my date’s lobster roll because he was so full from eating a little before dinner. Win for me. I was a happy girl. After dinner we ended up going to a knish shop for my date to try some Jewish food, which was cute. He ended up getting a blueberry cheese one that was so to die for that today I had to go get some for myself. Overall it was a great night with good food and great company.

 

WIAW at Grub Street

Hey ya’ll! It is that amazing time of the week again. What I Ate Wednesday, thanks to Jenn. I have another awesome share for my favorite day. I swear I go to so many food festivals. Here in the city, there probably is a food fest about every weekend, so when I saw that the Grub Street Food Festival was going on this past Sunday, I obviously had to go. I dragged my roommates and they happily trekked to the Lower East Side with me. Lets get to the good part: the food.

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When we first got there, we decided to walk around the entire event to see all the food options. The set up was pretty great. It was at a park on a track, so they set up the booths all around the track with a few in the middle. There were also a ton of tables in the middle of the track, but because so many people were there, we ended up having to sit at a checker table near the side. Once we walked around for a few minutes, we were ready to get our grub on.

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The reason I found out about this specific food festival was because I follow Doughnut Plant on Instagram. They said that they were going to be at the festival with pumpkin, apple cider, and coffee cake doughnuts. Obviously that was one reason to go. Their delicious doughnuts are life changing and these were no different. They were serving different types of each flavor. The options were cake, yeast, or doughseed. We ended up choosing the cake doughnut because it was said to be the most dense.

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Look at this perfect specimen. The lightly toasted pumpkin seeds on top. The small amount of pumpkin glaze that covered this doughnut. It was packed with pumpkin delicious flavor. The doughnut was so moist, which was nice because the texture was very cakey, but in a good way. It was a small doughnut, but it was perfect to split with Carrianne because we wanted to be able to eat as much as possible. My other roommate ended up getting the Apple Cider yeast doughnut and it looked amazing. She gobbled it up. Oh how I love fall flavored treats.

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Next up was Asia Dog. I’ve been wanting to go here for a while now. I missed out on going at Smorgasburg, so I was kind of bummed out. When I saw that they were having a stand at the Grub Street Fest, I knew that I had to go get one. I have an obsession with hot dogs. I think they are such a classic American treat. So delicious. At Grub Street Asia Dog wasn’t serving up their typical fair, but instead they were doing corn dogs. Even better.

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I ended up getting the tonkatsu with beef dog. You can get the corndogs if you go to the store front, but at this festival they were only serving them and not their other treats. This corndog was covered in a panko crust and served alongside was katsu mayo dipping sauce. It was amazing. I feel like panko crumbs make anything taste better. The mayo was a like a sweet Asian honey mustard sauce. It was awesome. The crunch of the outside was perfect with the softness of the inside of the dough. The beef hotdog was a perfect combination with this corndog breading.

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My roommate who is vegetarian ended up going to this delicious looking pizza place. The funny thing was that I had bookmarked this pizza place on yelp, so when she let me have a slice of her pizza I was in heaven. The crust was thin like it is in Italy, so when you picked the piece up it flopped down. The cheese was delicious. It was huge slices of mozzarella all over. The sauce was also evenly spread out through the crust and not that much on the pizza. I’m not a big fan of sauce, I really just enjoy toppings, so it was my dream pizza. I will definitely be going to this pizza shop.

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Now to the best thing of the whole day. Little Muenster. Yet another place that I had bookmarked on yelp for a must visit in the city. Oh how I am perfect at finding the best places. I ended up getting the beef brisket grilled cheese. It was the best grilled cheese I have ever had. The beef brisket was moist and tender. It pulled apart as you bit into it. The cheese was melted so well. It pulled in strings as you pulled it out of your mouth. The bread was toasted perfectly. It was crispy, but not burnt. This is the best comfort food.

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Carrianne ended up getting the squash grilled cheese. It was delicious. We ended up swapping half of each of our sandwiches for one of the other. That way we got to enjoy both of them. This was a good vegetarian option. It had a ton of different cheeses and it was topped with butternut squash. There could have been more squash on the sandwich, but otherwise it was perfect. I will definitely be going to their storefront whenever I need a nice warm grilled cheese to brighten my day.

I hope ya’ll enjoyed my post on this amazing food festival. It only happens once a year, so next year in October you better be headed down to Lower East Side.

What would be on your dream grilled cheese?
What is your favorite fall flavor?