Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Lunch at Rutt's Hut in Clifton, NJ

Dan finally made it to Rutt's.  Quick, no nonsense service without a smile  Balances out with the delicious hot dogs and fries.  Remember - cash only.
4 rippers - fries, and chili.  Dan put lots of relish, which they're known for.  The mustard is awesome

Dinner at Top's Diner in East Newark, NJ

Another quick dinner at Top's.  As long as you go during the week and before 8pm, it's not crowded and you are seated pretty much as soon as you walk in.  I'm going to miss the high quality food here when we move but I guess it will be worth it because there's not too much else around here.
Lobster mac and cheese.  An ambitious appetizer that was giant and was our dinner the next night

Short rib grilled cheese with caramelized onions. Sooo rich.  A little greasy so then I decided to get salad instead of fries

Dan got the shrimp roll that I got last time because it was soo good

Dinner at Junoon in NYC

Sejal, Debbie and I finally went to Junoon.  The inside was beautiful and very different from any place I've been; looked almost like a temple inside?  The food itself was not quite what I expected.  The portions were pretty small and I can't honestly say that it was a meal I would remember.  I'm sure the food is better than what we had since it has one michelin star, but I've had better.
Murgh Tikka - tandoori chicken thigh. Very tender.  Best part of my meal

Oyster Pakora - crispy oyster, lemon, palakwala

Eggplant Chaat - crispy eggplant, raita, tamarind chutney, red onion

Bagarey baigan - baby eggplant, coconut, curryleaf, peanut, tamarind.  Teeny tiny portion

Paneer Mirchi Ka Salan - long pepper, paneer, peanut tamarind sauce

Shahi Lamb Shank - black cumin curry, rose.  Tasty and tender but the sauce wasn't so memorable 

Lots of naan at least

Some green tea dessert that everyone was surprised was like a sponge cake

Spiced Chocolate Cake with milk chocolate sauce, espresso chocolate crumbs, and chantilly

Lunch from Pret a Manger in NYC

Pret is fancy now!  Lobster for lunch under $10!  I forgot to get a separate dressing so just squeezed the lemon, which made me feel kind of healthy because it was a light salad otherwise.  I though the lobster portion was generous and loved the avocado with it.

Dinner at American Cut in NYC

Dan and I went to Marc Forgione's steakhouse restaurant in Tribeca for Restaurant Week.  The place itself was pretty db-central, which was unfortunate.  The wait took awhile even though it was a random weekday on the early side - so long we almost left.  Fortunately we got seated and had a nice meal, though nothing super memorable and nothing worth coming back for except for the complimentary everything biscuits.  It's too bad because while everything was generally well done, the main purpose (steak) was just okay.
Complimentary Everything Biscuits - just like an everything bagel but with the awesome buttery flakiness of a biscuit.  Very filling

We both got the bacon.  Good but already sauced in their MF steaksauce.  A little burned too

Dan got the Bell and Evans Chicken with natural jus.  Good but not as good as the chicken under a brick at Forgione

Sunchoked spinach  with fontina and smoked salt.  Liked that it came in these cute individual all clad pots

Potato puree "robuchon" aka basically mashed potatoes

My hanger steak - bad pic (so dark) but it was very flavorful and super tender.  I was pretty full by this point sadly

Blueberry bread pudding that Dan enjoyed

My crackerjack sundae with popcorn and ice cream.  Cute idea but wayyy too sweet for me

Complimentary gummi bears - more thick than normal gummi texture.  A nice touch though

Lunch from Annabella's Kitchen in Newark, NJ

I stopped by Annabella's, which is a diner-esque spot by the law school.  It was inexpensive and fresh though a little more bread than filling.  I got a safe selection - grilled chicken sandwich with mozz, red peppers, and balsamic.  A little too much dressing for me, but still a tasty meal.

Dessert from Dominique Ansel Bakery in NYC

Post book club brunch, went across the street to Dominique Ansel bakery.  No cronuts because apparently you still have to pre-order them. Still, got some delicious treats and also got to try fresh Madelines while waiting, which were perfectly buttery and moist.  I bought a bunch of stuff to share with Dan at home.
DKA - "Dominique's Kouign Amann": Flaky and tender bread with caramelized layers.  Apparently the other thing they are known for other than the Cronut.  Super delicious and rich.  Great crunch on the outside but soft inside.  Almost like a marzipan inside in part

My eclair didn't travel so well ha.  A little too sweet for me

One of the best Almond Croissants I've had.  Very dense though.  Half was enough for me for breakfast

Brunch at Bistro Les Amis in NYC

Had some tasty brunch at book club at a French bistro in Soho.  They had an amazing poutine special, which is really more Montreal than French.  Cute little place and right across from Dominique Ansel bakery where we went after.
Poutine with duck, gravy, and CURDS

Debbie got french toast which looked great

Dinner at Porta Pizza in Jersey City, NJ

We went to Porta Pizza for Laura's birthday.  It took a really long time to get seated but that was partially because it was a friday night with a big group and no advances rezzie.  Pizza was delicious even though it took awhile.  I forgot to take a pic of one of the pizzas but I got the more important shot.  This is the same place behind Monk Room in Newark.  Obviously the environment was better at Porta; I just question the service.  But for two people I can't imagine the wait would be too bad because the place is huge.  Apparently there's a rooftop which I'd like to visit  before the weather gets cold.
Delicious focaccia.  Who knew I liked capers?

Incredible Scampi pizza - shrimp, caciocavallo, white wine, mozzarella, garlic, parsley, and lemon.  One of the best pizzas I've ever eaten

Dinner at Mark Joseph Steakhouse in NYC

Jess, Kavita and I went to Mark Joseph Steakhouse for Restaurant Week and I have to say it was one of the best RW meals I've had.  Except that they didn't have working bathrooms, but otherwise it was excellent haha.  The steak portion I got was giant.  Also their thick-cut bacon app was on part with Peter Luger's.  Would definitely come back again.  The restaurant is also located near the water by South Street Seaport, so would be nice for lunch when you can walk around.
My sizzling Canadian bacon appetizer - excellent ratio of meat to fat and super juicy

Caesar salad
20 oz sirloin steak cooked just as I asked

The other ladies got a filet and all entrees came with creamed spinach and mashed potatoes

My sides of creamed spinach and mashed potatoes

My whole plate cut up

Brownie with vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce
Fresh berries and cream

Dinner at Crema in NYC

I went to Crema for Restaurant Week dinner with Elena.  It was a really great deal - three courses from their regular menu of your choosing.  Unfortunately some of the flavor combos didn't work for me, but it was a good deal with good service so can't complaint too much.  I wouldn't come back though.
Taquitos de Chilorio - Slow-cooked pork mini tacos chile ancho, jalapeƱo vinegar, chipotle-cilantro drizzle and crema.  Elena seemed to enjoy.  I had a bite and the meat was tasty

Ceviche de Pulpo y Camaron - Grilled african octopus, poached shrimp, mango citrus marinated,pickled onion, jalapeno, avocado.  The mango was very over powering.  Usually ceviche is in a kind of broth versus this thick goop.  I couldn't even finish because the flavor was too sweet :(

Callo de Hacha con Chile Morita y Mango - Dry scallops pan seared in chile morita, zucchini-sweet corn cake, avocado mousse, mango pico de gallo, chipotle aioli.  Elena got this and seemed to enjoy it all.  I enjoyed the corn cake a lot

Tacos de Carne Asada - Adobo-marinated grilled skirt steak, black beans served in corn tortillas.  Very tasty but not super memorable

Churros - Cinnamon dusted churros, chocolate and cajeta dipping sauce.  Loved both sauces

Pastel de Tres Leches - Sponge cake soaked in three milks coconut caramel mango syrup dulce de leche ice cream. Great flavors but we were both pretty stuffed

Dinner at Top's Diner in East Newark, NJ

I was starting to get hangry and we didn't have anything to cook, so Dan and I went to Top's for a quick meal.  Ate a little more than intended but YOLO.  Nice balance of fried, fresh and home-y.
Sampler platter with buffalo wings, mozz sticks, and philly cheesesteak egg rolls.  All amazeballs

Dan's meatloaf with mashed potatoes and veggies.  Very large portion that Dan had for lunch later that week

My amazingly fresh shrimp roll!  Despite the mayo it was tasty.  

Close-up.  Dan had to help me finish because it was so huge

It was also national cheesecake day.  This huge piece for $2 or $3?