What Are Your MUST EAT Restaurants for 2011?


When a tweet becomes blog post fodder you roll with it. I wrote, “Can my NY resolutions just be a list of restaurants I resolve to eat in this coming year?” and it began. My awesome followers thought this was a damn good resolution so I’m writing my list of ten-ish (sticking to ten was not possible) restaurants I resolve to eat in, in the new year and I will post yours. I’m not normally a “resolutionary” at this time of year, but since the definition of “resolve” is to reach a firm decision about, I can safely say I have reached a firm decision to dine at these places and more.

These are not necessarily new or fancy, just places I ain’t been that are on my radar!

In 2011, I Solemnly Vow To Eat At

  1. Maharlika (NYC)
  2. Bobo (NYC)
  3. Kuma Inn (NYC)
  4. Rye (Brooklyn, NYC)
  5. Mrs Wilkes Boarding House (Savannah, Georgia) Almost ate there in the 90’s —must get there this year!
  6. The Four Seasons (NYC) I know! Crazy that I’ve never been!
  7. Szechuan Gourmet (Queens, NYC)
  8. The Breslin (NYC)
  9. Chilies & Chocolate (Brooklyn, NYC)
  10. Peaches Hot House (Brooklyn, NYC)
  11. M.Wells (LIC, NYC)
  12. Joseph Leonard (NYC)
  13. Goat Town (NYC)

BTW: This list gets longer and shorter and longer as I hear of places I must eat in.  I only picture myself getting wider and wider and wider…
ALSO: I do eat in other places in between, but they are mostly old faves so they don’t count as resolutions.

Diva Done Et

Here’s a Jackie Gordon Singing Chef’s Must Eatz 2011 Google Map of the places I’ve eaten.
Color Coded My Opinion System

  • “LOVE” - RED = I’d run back
  • “LIKE” - GREEN = I’d go back (unless otherwise indicated)
  • “FAIL” in YELLOW = I’ll never go back

Jackie Gordon Singing Chef’s Must Eatz 2011 | Diva That Ate New York

View Jackie Gordon Singing Chef’s Must Eatz 2011 Diva That Ate New York in a larger map

  • 8.17.11: La Luncheonette = LIKE (NYC)I had deja vu about this place, but I shouldn’t have since I have never been or is that why you have deja vu? I’ve always been intrigued by the name and I think I confused it with the old Chez Brigitte that used to be on Greenwich Avenue. French food in an odd setting which looks like a moderate scale, slightly dated restaurant with the waitress wearing gym clothes, surfing the internet and eating her lunch while she is waiting on you. So it felt like we were in someone’s living room. Not a bad thing since the food was good and plentiful. We had braised leeks with French lentils, one of the best salade nicoise I’ve ever had in New York, seared scallops with Chanterelles, country pate and more.
  • 8.12.11 Jeffrey’s = LIKE (NYC)Love that we were able to walk in on a Friday night and get a table right away—even though it was busy. The staff was extremely friendly and personable. We had a super-fresh tasting spicy shrimp and halibut ceviche, tuna poke with macadamia nuts and edamame as well as an heirloom tomato and watermelon salad and sea bass for main course—nothing was amazing, but everything was solid.  Apparently, their large plateau of seafood for $105.00 is a bargain for 4 people—next time.
  • 8.7.11: Nick’s On Broadway = LOVE (Providence, RI)You just have to watch the chef, Derek Wagner, plating and watching every dish that goes over the slide at Nick’s On Broadway to understand why it’s so good. We were hipped to (old school term meaning “suggested”) this restaurant by fellow RI food lovers, Dave Dadekian and Kate Lowther (thanks guys!) who were also our “partners in dine” for this awesome meal. So freaking good for brunch: semi-soft polenta, packed with Parmesan and topped with fried eggs and then a side of cornmeal crusted fish local fish | pork hash with eggs | sea bass with spinach and tomatoes and more. Really good. That’s why there’s a line…and it’s worth waiting for.
  • 7.28.11: ABC Kitchen = LOVE (NYC)The only reservations we could get were at 10pm. We took them, but that’s way too late for beginning a leisurely meal. So we showed up at six and they gave us a GREAT table. I can’t fault this place. Service was spot on—it feels very casual, but the staff didn’t miss a trick. Food was simple—quality ingredients and gorgeous produce, beautifully executed.  I didn’t gush over the carrots as my friends did and they were good, but not amazing. I totally GUSHED over the roasted okra and shisito peppers with scallions, sesame seeds and lemon zest. Loved the fresh beans in a vinaigrette with toasted hazelnuts. Enjoyed pretzel calamari and the grilled lobster. They sent out an adorable lil smores cupcake for my birthday. Perfect.
  • 7.24.11: Butter = LOVE (NYC) As we walked into Butter, a woman with an ear-to-ear grin on her face, floated past us and said, “Have the beignets.” I enjoyed this restaurant despite the fact that I’m a big, whiny, heat loathing New Yorker who did not wanna go out to dinner, for my birthday, again, in a heat wave (did I mention I’m an “ingrate”?). WHY WAS I BORN IN NY IN THE SUMMER? 
 Butter is an odd spot that seems more like a nightclub than a restaurant, especially a high end restaurant. Still, the food rocked. The waiter knew the menu inside out. Stand outs were: grilled octopus with chermoula, escargot with scallops, Foie gras terrine. We did wait a long time for mains so I can’t really recall what they were. And finally, the beignets—way too much for such a hot night, but the floating woman said try them… almost like a message from the gods. They were AMAZING! Perfectly fried, warm jam donuts with a vanilla dipping sauce. I’ll definitely go back in winter to have them again.
  • 7.22.11: Prune = LIKE (NYC) Somehow I’d never been to Prune—not intentional. Now Gabrielle Hamilton has the book. Wound up at her book reading before I ate in the restaurant. I loved her no BS style. We went on my birthday during a heat wave. Bad move. While I liked the food, the space was really warm and uncomfortable and the service was condescending. It may have been the heat, but I definitely felt like the staff had an attitude of, “We have so much business we don’t really need to worry about pleasing each individual.” That pissed us right off, especially since we were sweating like stuck pigs. I’m torn. I have friends, who I really  trust, that swear by Prune. I didn’t think the food was so outstanding that it warranted putting up with any that sort of nonsense. At the same time, I don’t wanna give it a fail without trying it one more time because my experience clashed with so many people I know. The pickled (marinated) grape tomatoes on my pulled pork and black eyed peas were really tasty.
  • 7.16.11: Terrapin Restaurant = LIKE (Rhinebeck, NYC) We spent the weekend in Rhinebeck being happily fattened up like Thanksgiving turkeys by dear friends. After a sumptuous breakfast and lunch we came to eat even more, of course. Our party was thoroughly distracted by a bride and groom who were celebrating their wedding anniversary, wearing their wedding outfits and dining alone. It looked odd, but I love a bit of strange… The food was good. Great example of a small country town restaurant that delivers. I had the seared tuna app that was perfectly cooked, nice and rare. And then the duck. I’d like to go back actually hungry without distractions.
  • 7.12.11: Broken English = LIKE (Brooklyn, NYC) I can’t say that I’m being fair about Broken English. I didn’t like it even before I went in. I felt there was something smarmy about it each time I walked by and vowed to never go. Until the BF got it in his head that we had to go (something about loving the look of the bar—even though he is not drinking). In New York, there are many non-Hispanic casual restaurants that have mostly Latino cooks in the kitchen. This works out great when they really know and love food or there is a behind-the-scenes person who really loves food and has trained and inspired the cooks to understand and produce amazing food. You can taste it. There are other places where the cooks are just doing what they were told by someone who never cared or someone who may have been there initially and is not there, at every service, making sure the food is executed well, anymore.

This is what Broken English tastes like to me. And there could well be a bunch of Italian mommas in the kitchen since I never saw the kitchen staff. The food reads well, but it’s weak. it looks good, but it tastes churned out, by a machine. We had a beautifully plated savory panna cotta with shaved beets, topped with baby greens and a sprinkle of pistachios that was all one note—FLAT. The rest of the food felt the same. It looked good, you wanted to love it, but it just was not happening. Broken English is busy. It’s in a good spot and the bar is beautiful looking. It’s not for me. I didn’t FAIL it, but every restaurant in my neighborhood would have to be closed and my fridge empty before I’d go back.
  • 7.9.11: Glenora Wine Cellars LIKE (Seneca Lake, NYC) “Sorry.” It’s a bad sign when dinner service begins with an apology for ignoring you. I actually didn’t feel ignored which meant they really had no idea how long we’d been there. Glenora Wine Cellars is in the Finger Lakes. When I’m in the country, I lower my NYC standards way down and take what I get. Here, I was especially grateful that a decent restaurant was even open passed five pm. Glenora is probably one of the higher end restaurants in the area with a stunning view of Seneca Lake. I had a seafood combo appetizer and salmon and BF had a pork chop with native blueberries. I always wonder why the food in the country is so busy. Rather than do one or two things simply and beautifully, I see a lot of food that is multi-cultural, even on the same plate, and most of it falls short. It was all very ordinary and inoffensive and there was a view. And there were lots more apologies from the staff. Weird.
  • 7.3.11: Simon Pearce = FAIL (Quechee, VT) I could eat the view! Simon Pearce’s restaurant is in an old mill. It overlooks a rushing waterfall that powers the mill that produces energy for the glass blowing facility, the pottery and the rest of the building—LOVE THAT! But save for the water sprays, I can’t actually eat the view and I’m not one to let the view make up for the food. Country food at city prices that’s really disappointing compared to everything else at Simon Pearce that is STUNNING. By comparison to the excellence surrounding me in every nook and cranny of this building, the food was WEAK. In another country setting I may have been more forgiving, but I think they might like to dust off the menu and stop over saucing every dish (SWIMMING!) and bring the same level of excellence to their food is apparent everywhere else.
  • 7.1.11: Water Street Restaurant = FAIL (Brooklyn, NYC) We came for the deep fried deviled eggs. They were just okay. The filling was not tasty enough to stand up the coating. They served a dipping sauce, but in my mind deviled eggs should stand on their own and then you can add other yummy things to compliment them. We also had jalapeno poppers that we really bad. No reason to go back again.
  • 7.1.11: The Jack The Horse Tavern = LIKE (Brooklyn, NYC) We stopped in for apps at the bar and they were very good. The bartender was a lil to cool for school, but the food made up for his over blown view of himself. Sliced beets with fried goat balls (goat “cheese” people) and fennel, watermelon radish salad. Salumeria and fried oysters. All good. We’ll go back for dinner.
  • 6.26.11: Ilili = LIKE (NYC) I was lucky to have a Mediterranean feast here. LOVED It. Totally overfed. I was done by the second round of appetizers that I thought were mains. I was wrong. So I ate more—STUFFED. It was an event with non food peeps and I was yammering away and “gluttoning” so there were no pics or definite recollection of all we had, but it was DELISH. Every person I know who has eaten there ADORES this place. Go.
  • 6.17.11: Salt & Fat = LOVE (Queens, NYC) Ahhhh Salt and fat… where do I begin? First of all this restaurant has my name on it. Seriously, I want a tattoo. If it weren’t for the schlepp into Queens I could live here. Crack and cheese: Super rich macaroni and cheese topped with crumbled bacon. Hello? Yum! Speck and hamachi. A beef short ribs cube that looks like a chink of chocolate cake. Perfectly seared scallops were divine. And tons more. Everything savory was delicious. For me, the dessert was skippable. There were five of us. We ordered almost everything on the menu and the check came out to $35 per person including. Open in Boerum HIll, Brooklyn… yesterday… thank you.
  • 6.3.11: Kaz An Nou = FAIL (Brooklyn, NYC) Friends told me to eat here. No, they implored me to eat here. So I finally did. I’m sorry I had a “we must be living in parallel universe” dining experience. I had one the most annoying and unsatisfying meals of my life here. It was hot out—normal summer heat, not a heat wave and there was NO A/C and they cook in the dining room of the restaurant. They had an household fan going. I only saw one. I almost walked out when I walked in, but they’d already set up a table for us and I’d heard such great accolades.  They serve NO drinks. It’s BYO. But no soft drinks. no juice? WTF? The menu was heavy for summer and unappealing. Creamy, shrimp filled puff pastry cases (overcooked)? Baked avocado with cheese? Everything was badly done. I was embarrassed. And people LOVE it. Go figure. It’s CHEAP. Whatever…
  • 5.31.11: Zabb Elee = LIKE (NYC) We liked Zabb Elee. The food is good, cheap and HOT! I’m talking spicy, not hip although it is a lil hip too since they got “Best Thai in NY” from Serious Eats. I love spicy food, but I invited a friend who doesn’t and that was a mistake. Still us heat lovers enjoyed and my friend sweated his way through it. Loved the green papaya salad with pork cracklings, the larb, the fried chicken. Must get back there soon.
  • 5.24.11: Peacefood Cafe = LIKE (NYC) Once you go vegan… I was hijacked into this place with some friends after seeing a show on the Upper Westside. I went willingly because some vegan foodie friends from the New York Women’s Culinary Alliance were raving about it. The menu really did look good… for vegan and the desserts looked incredible (although I didn’t have any). I had something very safe (no seitan or tempeh) called Charlie Brown Rice. It had a super tasty vegan chili with brown rice salad and some damn good guacamole. They make an outstanding homemade chili paste with beans in it. It’s great place to take your vegan friends without suffering yourself.
  • 5.23.11: Pardes = LOVE (Brooklyn, NYC) Finding myself in this restaurant was a total FLUKE. It was not on my list, but it was on my radar because I noticed it one day when I was wandering up Atlantic Avenue. We were hungry last Monday and a lot of places in the hood were closed. Pardes was quite busy for a Monday. I was looking at the menu and the waitress walked out and said, “You really should come and try it because the food is really good.” I was thinking of doing a three course meal in three different restaurants and the menu looked extremely interesting for the starters.  But we wound up staying. The food was very good and really varied. Turns out it’s one of the finest Kosher restaurants in New York City. The chef, Moses, was a delight and he has this amazing gravely voice. He cures his own beef bacon (he was not always kosher, so he knows his bacon), but we did not get to try it. We had fried okra with a ramp dressing and pickled ramps. We had a roasted corn salad with pureed corn, grapefruit, mizuna, pistachios and black salt with a vanilla dressing. We had Bronzino Crudo w shaved radishes and fennel and a lentil puree (think really fine humus with lentils instead of chickpeas) sprinkled with tomato concasse and chopped parsley salad with freshly made foccacia. The dessert was wild—tahini pistachio cake with candied eggplant and “ice cream” that was made from almonds. And there were lots of amazing looking dishes flying past my table—the steak—the pizzas. It was odd to be the only gentiles dining, but I also felt really lucky to have found this place. It’s closed on Fridays and Saturdays.
  • 5.21.11: Traif = LOVE (Brooklyn, NYC) I think I’ve been dreaming about the two salads we had for brunch at Traif so much they’ve morphed into something I never ate. That’s because we ate them before I took a picture of them. But I would go back there in a minute to have them again. That said, they probably will not exist again because Traif changes the menu constantly according to what’s in season. I just remember the truffle dressing and fava beans and pistachios and finely chopped egg and blood plums, but remember those are ingredients are from two different salads. What they had in common is they ROCKED! Now the fried chicken and biscuits with gravy and watermelon salad was good. There was something sweet in the gravy that just threw the dish off a little. We also had the bacon doughnuts with dulce du leche and coffee ice cream. It sounded amazing, but the bacon let it down. It was dry and tasteless—I know that sounds weird for bacon. However I would definitely go back for the salads and there were other things on the menu that caught my eye and my tongue.
  • 5.13.11: Five Points = LOVE (NYC) The acoustics SUCKED! And I’d run back for the potato pizza with fontina cheese and truffle oil or the fritto misto or both with a salad and a glass of Verdejo. I was very impressed by Five Points. Everything we had was well prepared. My friend complained that the scallops were too peppery, but I love pepper so mine were YUMMY! The desserts were HUGE! And some of the things were a bargain (i.e. fritto misto for $11). All in all good value. I would go early if you want to be able to talk to your fellow diners. But if you are just there for the food, plug in your iPod and dig in!
  • 5.11.11: Kin Shop = LIKE (NYC) Oh, we had fun here. Perfect for a food bloggers feast up! We PIGGED out. Great service. LOVED the crispy pork and fried oyster salad and the duck larb (which others found too spicy—not me!). Soft shell crabs were perfectly crunchy and I liked the watermelon and tomato salad on the side. Some of the dishes, like the duck curry were a bit precious for the price. The Nam Prik was pureed, which both my Laotian dining companion and I found weird and unnecessary. I don’t think it’s brilliant on the value-for-money stakes. It came out to about $86 pp. We could have STUFFED ourselves at Sripraphai for 1/4 the price.
  • 5.5.11: Restaurant Marc Forgione = LOVE (NYC) I’m not name dropping, but Marc Forgione and I may be related. If my mom’s mom didn’t just die, at 99 years old, I might be able to prove it. We’re purportedly distant cousins to his grandparents. Marc did not recall being related to anyone from the Pallamallo family, but he did send me an order of divine escargot, since I asked… just in case. Cause that’s how you treat family! Dinner was excellent. From the picture and palette perfect sweet potato rolls to the oddly named but tasty Tattoos & Strawberries that featured neither strawberries or tattoos, but a selection of mini ice cream cones.
  • 4.19.11: Soto = LIKE (NYC) I was intrigued by this place, even before I knew what it was. There’s no signage, just a cool, white entrance way with cut out windows, kinda like a peep show booth (don’t ask how I know this). The food is stunning looking. And fresh. And flavorful. And expensive. And small. The place was a ghost town at 6pm and they had to check the book to see if they could seat us? The service is what you’d expect at an all-you-can-eat sushi joint. Despite the delicious food, I don’t think it’s worth it and I would not go back.
  • 4.15.11: L’ecole = LIKE (NYC) I had not eaten here in so long I thought it deserved a mention. We went for lunch and it’s still a fab NY bargain. Three course lunch for $28.00 prepared by the students at the French Culinary Institute. All of out food was well prepared and delish (I picture the students in the kitchen sweating over every plate —I hope they’re not terrified —I could not taste the “fear). You cannot go wrong!
  • 4.11.11: Grand Sichuan = LOVE (NYC) Popped in to the 9th Ave (Chelsea) location for a quick dinner before checking out a improv show. I used to go to the one in Hell’s Kitchen that closed a few years ago.  This one is usually SWAMPED, but the odd hour was in our favor and it was pretty busy for a Monday The food was very good, especially considering the location and prices. We had the Dan-Dan Noodles, Shrimp Dumplings in Sesame Sauce, Sauteed Pea Shoots with Fresh Garlic and Salt & Pepper Shrimp — we were eating lite. I’d rather go back with a group since there was an over choice of what I wanted to try. There will definitely be a next time.
  • 4.3.11: Northern Spy Food Co = LOVE (NYC) I love this place!  It has an interesting and fun menu, that’s well executed. Pork rillettes with garlic toast were excellent. The southern fried chicken livers were crunchy and tasty. I had Long Island fluke long island with green beans, radish, cippollini onions, anchovy butter and carrot reduction — beautifully cooked — I almost licked the plate. My friends had the squid and mussel ragout and the lamb which they both loved. Apparently, we’d picked the three favorites of the waitress who was very well informed — it makes such a difference. They poach the squid in olive oil which gives it a totally non-rubbery texture. I have to try this at home. The sweet potato pie was too sweet for me. The pickled eggs were too sharp. The brine needed more personality, but I would totally make them at home. I love when a restaurant inspires me. I would definitely go back!
  • 4.2.11: Il Buco = LOVE (NYC) We had the BF’s family birthday lunch here. The bread was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!!!! The burrata app was stunning with shaved watermelon radish and pickled fennel. The cod croquettes were perfectly fried. Everything, but the service was divine. The waiter, who was lovely, was in-the-weeds the entire time. Simple food with exquisite ingredients. And the panna cotta is legendary!
  • 3.31.11: Ippudo = LOVE (NYC) This one was a revisit, but I thought it deserved a place on my list because it is so fierce. We had the mountain yam appetizer which has a bizarre texture in your mouth — but totally worked as well as the ribs ( a bit pricey) and the fried chicken wings = NOM! NOM! NOM! We both had ramen — their broth is the best in town — hence the proverbial line. But if you go for lunch or early dinner, there was no wait. I will go back!
  • 3.30.11: Red Rooster = FAIL (NYC) What a disappointment!  Was so looking forward to this and was thoroughly under-impressed. Except for Helga’s meatballs (Swedish meatballs in a “soul food” restaurant?) and the sweet potato donuts which totally scrumptious. Never again.
  • 3.28.11: Stonehome Wine Bar + LIKE (Brooklyn, NYC) This is a lovely little wine bar with a short and delish menu. I liked the food. I don’t know if I’d be running back because the menu was just too short, but it was nice. If you are in the neighborhood and going to BAM for a show it’s perfect.
  • 3.22.11: Prime Meats = LOVE (Brooklyn, NYC) Blew me away! Loved everything! Wanted to eat the entire menu. I had the beet salad and the schnitzel and wild mushroom spatzle. The BF had the sauerbraten. EXCELLENT! Total A-Game restaurant. It’s a little too near my house — DANGEROUS!
  • 3.21.11: Colonie = LIKE (Brooklyn, NYC) Good looking restaurant! Especially the staff and extremely personable. The pork belly was exqusite. They served it on a bed of red cabbage that had toasted pine nuts through it and a maple sauce. The other two apps were forgettable. We got the wrong fish, but it was striped bass and very nicely prepared. I’m not sure if I’d go back. It’s about as far from my house as Prime Meats …
  • 3.19.11: Le Barricou = LIKE (Brooklyn, NYC) Solid French bistro menu with local ingredients. I had mussels — they were tasty and well prepared. The perfect neighborhood spot, regrettably not in my neighborhood.
  • 3.7.11: Diego = LIKE (Brooklyn, NYC) Excellent, reasonably priced ( I compare everything to Rosa Mexicana which has the most expensive guac I ever ordered)  table–side–made guacamole shined like a ray of hope in this new Mexican restaurant on Smith St. Good Mexican has been seriously lacking on this street (Yes, including the Oaxaca tacos — I thought they were lame). Calexico is good (they had me at the condiment selection—the pumpkin seed salsa ROCKS!), but a bit of a schlep from my house. I think there was something not quite right about the tortilla chips at Diego, but they were warm and plentiful so I ate them. Today they seem to be “haunting” me. The BF hag the mahi-mahi tacos and I had the chicken enchiladas. The red sauce was WAY too bitter, but the green sauce was good. Rice and beans (black ones cooked with pork— as it should be) were yummy. Despite the suspicious chips we’ll go back.
  • 3.6.11: Applewood = LIKE (Brooklyn, NYC) We just happened upon this place for brunch the other day. It was jamming busy and we were hungry from power-walking in the rain. I had the eggs with biscuits and homemade pork sausage gravy, which were tasty and plentiful. They specialize in local and seasonal foods. I thought it was weird that there was no fruit on the menu for brunch, even fruits that had been in season and were preserved while in season for the BF’s winter oatmeal as our ancestors would have done. TIP: Since they smother the biscuits in gravy, order the gravy on the side so you can have some the not–in–season apricot jam they gave me on at least one of the biscuits. There were lots of mouth-watering dishes on the menu, but we will refrain from visiting again until summer.
  • 2.15.11: Food Parc =LIKE (NYC) This is a high tech food court in the Eventi Hotel. It is very slick and modern, but that is not my cup of tea. I prefer my food courts to be down and dirty, like the ones I’ve been to Australia. Chock–a–block with lots of different stalls and each one making a different type of Asian cuisine. I like the feeling of wanting to eat everything they offer and having to settle for a small selection. I didn’t get that feeling at Food Parc. I thought the Pat La Frieda burger was just ordinary. I did like the Asian fusion food from Red Farm especially the Katz’s pastrami egg roll. Red Farm’s beef dumpling’s and bao were tasty too!
  • 2.14.11: Wu Liang Ye = LOVE (NYC) Man I loved this restaurant!!! Especially because it’s behind Rockefeller Center. I usually write off that entire neighborhood food-wise (I’m sure this is inaccurate, but I’m a bit of a downtown and west side food snob). I love the old school decor with the service staff in worn-out suits. It’s some of the best Szechuan food in the city and it was DELICIOUS! My favorites were the Dan-Dan Noodles, Wok Roasted Prawns with Pepper Spiced Salt, Wok Seared Filet Mignon with Shiitake & Spinach and Double Cooked Fresh Bacon with Spicy Capsicum.  I meant to get an order of Chilled Noodles with Spicy Sesame Vinaigrette to go, but I forgot. I’m not worried since I’ll definitely be going back!
  • 1.2.11: Fatty Cue = LIKE (Brooklyn, NYC) I thought it was good, not brilliant. Fave dish was Smoked Catfish Nam Prik w veggies & chiccarones which was spicy and delicious! Liked the Bacon Cue, the Ribs and the noodles (they sent a comp extra noodle —THANKS!). Preferred the bao w pork at Momofuku — Fatty Cue meat was tasty, but pork belly rocks! Did not like the crab laksa&mdash small, disappointing flavors.The waitress was awesome!
  • 1.6.11: Sue Perette = LIKE (Brooklyn, NYC) French bistro Brooklyn. Good food! I did not think substitution pork belly for lardons on the classic frisee salad with poached egg worked. Pork belly rocks! But it lacks the salt and fat distribution of bacon. Pork belly does not like cubing and crisping—little pork rocks.The rest of the salad was delish especially the croutons. I had a hanger steak frites — the frites were perfectly done. Steak was tasty and chewy as is the way of the hangar steak. BF had the cassoulet which was very good and an apple galette with cinnamon ice cream which he inhaled. Service was very exemplary. (NYC)
  • 1.18.11: Breukelen = LIKE (Brooklyn, NYC) New Place in Cobble Hill We shared a big salad of beets, goat cheese and hazelnuts with blood orange dressing. I had 5 spice duck breast with brussel sprouts, Chinese sausage, chestnut spaetzle and a port jus = YUM! BF had the lamb ravioli which was too rich for my taste, but he enjoyed it. The service was very good and they forgot to serve bread —whatcha gonna do?
  • 1.28.11: Avoce = LOVE (NYC) Loved it despite getting a crappy table (not acceptable to me since we walked in at 5:45— I didn’t bitch about it). Everything else was excellent! We shared Nduja a Calabrian spreadable sausage. It was sexy, fatty. spicy, thick and smooth like meat butter as well as shaved fennel with pecorino— the fennel was nice and refreshing in contrast to the nduja. Then we had a kick butt pork belly with almost crisp candied figs, balsamic glaze and pistachios. We split a tagliatelle with chicken ragu, chicken livers and shaved white truffles. Finally we had a double cut pork chop with grilled Meyer lemon, arugula and roasted abalone mushrooms with a side of broccoli rabe, crisp garlic chips and anchovies. No dessert. ARE YOU KIDDING? We rolled home.
  • 1.29.11: Sripraphai = LOVE (Queens, NYC) What did we eat? What didn’t we eat? Ten food enthusiasts, organized by the lovely and hungry Emily Cavalier (Mouth Of The Border), trekked to Queens to feast on Thai food. Dan Saltzstein ordered us a feast and we dutifully ate it. I will dream of the fried watercress salad, Chinese broccoli with crispy pork and Kao-Soy (coconut, red curry paste soup with crispy and soft noodles—it reminds me of a laksa) until we meet again! See Photos by Waisum Tam

I’d love to hear where you’re resolving to eat or any suggestions that I MUST try. So send me your list and/or tips (and your blog link or Twitter handle, if you have one) or add it in the comments and we’ll look back next New Year’s Eve to see if kept our resolutions!!!

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