Manhattan

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Very Good Upscale Indian Dinner at Zaika (NYC)

[Translate] While there are a number of fine dining Indian restaurants in Manhattan, Zaika is a pretty darn strong contender. Located several blocks away from Grand Central Station, this restaurant is lovely as it has a lounge area with a water feature near the bar and hostess stand. The dining room is quite spacious and the decor is modern and there’s different prints on the walls of the Buddha and nature scenes inspired by India. When it comes to the food, the seafood dishes were stellar but everything else we had were delicious as well. The flavors are on-point and..

Preview Opening of Boucherie Gramercy Park (NYC)

[Translate] Earlier last week, the French steakhouse bistro Boucherie opened a new location in Gramercy. If you ever stopped by their original location in the West Village, it’s a similar look and feel. The yellow, dim lights that reminds me of a romantic Parisian bistro but this place has a charcuterie counter right off the entrance of the new location. The cocktails were strong and the drinks are created by head bartender Anthony Bohlinger formerly of Maison Premiere. The Birds of Paradise, a tall drink made of Beefeater gin, Sotol, Bigallete thyme, fennel, beet, lemon and egg white that isn’t..

Solid Dinner at Flinders Lane (NYC)

[Translate] A few evenings ago, a friend and I had a solid dinner at Flinders Lane. This modern Australian restaurant draws a heavy influence on southeastern Asian cuisine, especially when reading through the tightly edited menu. The décor pays homage to the gritty history of Flinders Lane, a former rag-trade district in Melbourne, with concrete walls and floors, bare bulbs suspended from skinny metal cages and a mural of adjacent Hosier Lane in its neon-graffiti glory. (more…)

Comforting Bowls of Mixian – Weekend Lunch at Little Tong (NYC)

[Translate] The brutal cold winter in New York City makes many people yearn for a large steaming bowl of soup and noodles to warm themselves inside and out. While there are many options for that general food category, I was curious to eat at Little Tong with a few friends. Little Tong, run by chef Simone Tong, specializes on mixian rice noodles and overall this place is worth the hype. (more…)

Dinner at Char Sue (NYC)

[Translate] I’ve recently had a dinner with an old college friend of mine Char Sue since we haven’t seen each other for several months. Char Sue is the kind of place where you would want to hang out with a few friends and have a casual dinner. The Asian inspired food menu tends to be on the heavier side since it’s catering to the Lower East Side neighborhood where you’re primarily surrounded by bars and you would want to pad your stomach with something carby, fatty and preferably, delicious before you start imbibing. While we aren’t going for a night..

Solid Tapas Brunch at Lamano

[Translate] Over this weekend, a friend of mine and I made the treacherous trek out in the Arctic frozen city for brunch at Lamano. What I like about Lamano that it is tapas and you can eat small plates and since we both traveled to Barcelona a few years back, it brought moments of nostalgia. While the tapas served for brunch are classics, they were done very well. We started off with brunch focused cocktails of a Sherry Mary and a peach Bellini. Lamano’s unique take on the Bloody Mary was interesting. It replaced the tomato juice with beet juice..

Good Food and Cocktails at Villanelle (NYC)

[Translate] Villanelle refers to a 16th-century Neapolitan style of melodic poetry consisting of 19 lines. The space has a subdued, earthy look with pine beams running along the bar area, and white brick walls and gray banquettes in the dining room. We stopped by one frigid evening to have dinner and started off with cocktails that run the spectrum from creative takes on classics like the Paul Revere – a nod to the period and it’s a fantastic, smoked version of the Old Fashioned. The Merciless Beauty, as we were informed by the wait staff, a take on the martini...

Three Pillars Bar Lounge – Cozy, Upscale and Great Drinks and Japanese Food (NYC)

[Translate] There’s lots of bars in New York City and its nightlife give you a wide range to choose from the bustling, hole-in-the-wall to the really nice, upscale lounges that may reside in hotels. A relative newcomer from the Suzuki Hospitality Group (the group that owns the 1* Michelin sushi and seasonal kaiseki restaurant called Suzuki and a sushi bar counter seating restaurant, Satsuki) has Three Pillars Bar. This upscale yet cozy lounge is found across the hall from Suzuki restaurant. When you enter through the doorway, you’d see the short foyer filled with crystals dropping from the ceiling making..

Solid, Upscale Szechuan Cuisine at Hwa Yuan (NYC)

[Translate] Hwa Yuan is a new upscale Szechuan restaurant in Manhattan’s Chinatown. This restaurant started by the son of one of New York’s legendary Chinese restaurants. Hwa Yuan (the original opened in the 1980s) closed years ago and seminal Chinese restaurateur Shorty Tang died, his son Chen Lieh Tang reopened this current restaurant in hope to revitalize this part of Chinatown. The restaurant is spacious having three floors, taking up the space of what was Bank of China. The basement is the kitchen and private dining room that was the safety deposit room of the bank. The main floor and..