Posts Tagged ‘west village’

Say hello to some gnocchi. I love gnocchi.

Left Bank is on Perry Street in the West Village and it’s a new restaurant from old Mermaid friends Laurence Edelman and Micheline Gaulin. I loved working with them both back in the day and I am loving visiting them in their new restaurant now. I was there opening week and told Laurence how much I enjoyed everything and he said, “You know we’re just getting started.” EXCITING!

This is my homegirl Mara, whom you’ve met lots of times. I knew she’d be the one to take to Left Bank because she, like me, loves trying new restaurants and also she works at LeDu Wines just around the corner from Left Bank. It was perfect! That very large glass in front of you is an “International Stud” named after the gay bar that used to be in the space and also featured in this video of my friend Colby making it while wearing a Knot By Tiffa bowtie. Yes I am shelling for my friends’ companies right now (Knot by Tiffa included) but they are all pretty legit.

For our meal we also had a beefsteak tomato salad and the pork rillettes. Don’t think I’ve ever had pork rillettes before but they were fun to eat and delicious. And of course the beautiful salad was, too. Tomato salads are so perfect for summer.

We also had a pan-roasted pork chop with sauerkraut and mustard. Look at that sauerkraut! My mom would have died. A happy death, of course.

For dessert we had some really delicious cheese, and I never get cheese for dessert. I always think dessert = chocolate but I’m trying to branch out. And cheese is fancy. More cheese, please!

So that’s it! Head on over to Left Bank and tell ’em I sent you. I know I’ll be there again soon. :)

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Dan’s not going to like this. He’s very particular about his photographs (as are many guys I know… hmm) but as he said, there’s not much he can do if I put a picture of him on my blog. Hehe. You people know what you’re getting into when you go out to dinner with me. Let’s be real.

So there is Dan and myself at The Spotted Pig, aka my new favorite restaurant! I’ve said this to a few people since dining there last week, and pretty much everyone’s reaction to me has been, “What?! You’ve never been there before?!” Hard to believe, I know, but it’s true. I have not yet been to every single good restaurant in NYC. And I probably won’t!

But The Spotted Pig. It is cuuuuute. There’s a downstairs and an upstairs, and the upstairs has a bar too. We had to wait maybe 25 minutes so we had a drink upstairs by the bar before they found us and gave us a table downstairs. There are pictures everywhere and it just has so much character! I remember pointing out that they had strings of lights in the shape of pigs. Pigs! Who makes those!? Anyway, they are famous for not only being cool, but also for their fabulous burgers, which we both ordered.

And here is a picture of Dan’s cheeseburger with a flash (funny because he scoffed at me taking pictures originally and then was all, “Now, you’ve got to take a picture of THIS” when he looked at the inside of his burger).

Oh yeah, those fries are crazy too. HEAPS OF FRIES!

We also had devils on horseback which were figs with pear wrapped in bacon? I think? Delicious. And we also had the sheep’s milk ricotta gnudi with basil pesto which was CaRazy. Flavor!

The only thing I wasn’t as thrilled with was this:

Flourless chocolate cake. Now, I have tried many flourless chocolate cakes and I’ve never really understood why it matters if there is flour or not, but this wasn’t really like a cake at all. It was more of a slice of frosting/fudge if you can imagine. Extremely chocolatey and a good flavor, just not what I expected. For the record, Dan doesn’t really care about chocolate and he thought it was great. He wanted you to know that.

So there you have it. The Spotted Pig is the ISH and the service was impeccable and I would glady, glady return.

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I love birthdays. I love birthdays where friend’s tell me what they want to do and where they want me to meet them. I’m always the planner and I know all the places I want to go to, so it’s nice to see some stuff on other people’s radar.

The Jane Hotel. Strange. Eclectic. Old? Really, what a strange place. There are a lot of hotels with interesting decor and you can add The Jane to the list. The bar area is awesome because it’s a huge open area with big open couches which is perfect for large groups. It made me think it’s the hipster/cheap European traveler’s Rose Bar. Yep. It is.

Also in the Jane is Cafe Gitane, which is also interesting. Very interesting menu. One item highly recommended on the interwebs (foursquare tips, what?) is the avocado toast:

It’s kind of the perfect appetizer to split with one other person.

For entrees, I ordered the salmon pot pie:

That’s the salmon pot pie in the front and Lucy’s salad in the back. She’s such a good girl. I on the other hand was craving some gooey pot pie with all this rain lately, but gooey pot pie it wasn’t. Let me tell you what it was: Stick your fork into it and find a giant piece of salmon! It was salmon with a pot pie crust. Very interesting but not exactly what I wanted.

Here is the couscous with chicken that many a Foursquare users recommended:

I mean… I like couscous and everything, and there was chicken involved but I don’t think I would ever order it for a meal. Yes, that couscous tower is impressive, but it’s still couscous. Also, I had some hummus at lunch, so…

Another solid entree was the pasta with prosciutto. It was elbow noodles, which I love and it made me really want some solid mac and cheese.

Moving onto dessert. The chocolate cake was more like a chocolate brownie. Desperately needed some ice cream or a gooey chocolate center:

Also for dessert we got a chocolate bread pudding for the birthday girl. My favorite bread pudding is still at Posto.

Happy Birthday, Susan!

Oh one more comment – one thing I noticed tonight at dinner was that I was surrounded by some high-class women. We had JP Morgan, HP, Dell, American Express, and the NHL in the house. And those are just the ones I remember. Only in New York.

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Ice cream cookie sandwiches! Woo woo! Warning: the following post will be about ice cream too, wheee!

So the other night Kelly and I went to Milk and Cookies in the West Village. I didn’t even know this place existed. And it’s so cute! You pick out your cookies and your ice cream and viola ice cream cookie sandwich:

I’ve mentioned before that I worked at an ice cream shop in East Lansing, Mich. back in the day. We were famous for our ice cream cookie sandwiches, which we would freeze so when you took a bite the ice cream didn’t go everywhere. At Milk and Cookies since they make it in front of you, my ice cream tried to escape when I took a bite. But it was still delicious. I chose the double chocolate cookie with vanilla ice cream which is called the “penguin.” Kelly got the same thing.

Add another West Village spot to my list.

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Have you been to Grom? No? Well, what are you waiting for?

Gelato, baby. And gelato is delicious. Kayti and I each got the same thing, which you see above: half stracciatella and half crema di grom (with battifollo biscuits and Colombian chocolate chips). My, my.

Even Tim Revell was in love.

Had no idea I was such a big fan of gelato, but glad to know since there are so many gelato shops in the city. Miss Kelly Purkey swears by L’arte del Gelato and I’ve got a feeling I’ll be trying it this weekend since my momma’s coming to town.

Yeah, I can’t say much more about Grom. My friend Lucy is lactose intolerant and she says it’s the one gelato she cannot refuse. So there ya go.

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Cheers! It’s time for a margarita from good ol’ Cowgirl, mmm, mmm… Yes, I am still trying to acquire the taste of tequila and I think I’m doing okay! I ordered the peach margarita and isn’t she pretty? She’s sweet too. Eugene got a lime margarita, which is not as exciting. What is exciting are the little glass animals on the ends of our straws! I think I forgot to take mine home! I remember a restaurant in Detroit that used to give these little animals on top of their ice cream scoop desserts and my family loved it. Family Buggy perhaps?

It is hot as Hades in NY right now and I am very grateful for my window air conditioning unit. I am not grateful for my wireless internet, which only seems to work in the non-air conditioned, hot and sweaty kitchen. Back to things I am grateful for: dining and drinking al fresco. Now’s the time. :)

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Oh my gosh. I have never been so exhausted. Can I take today off, please? No? Okay.

Last night was the best night EVER. I went to Tasting Table’s Lobster Claw-Off with The Mermaid Oyster Bar and I am SO glad that I went. Not only was I able to get some great shots of the event, hang out with awesome Mermaid people, and meet some new people; I also just got to hang out in this crazy penthouse in the West Village. It was kind of unbelievable. And I snuck onto the roof. By myself. Without my phone. Could have been the end of me if the door accidentally shut. But it was not, which is why you are lucky enough to get this self-portrait. It was the coolest experience, for the Mermaid and for me. I am one happy (and exhausted) camper!

Um, this is the view from one of the bathrooms. BATHROOMS. THERE IS A CHANDELIER IN THE BATHROOM. I can’t even talk, I must move on.

Sigh. I love this. All of this. Everything. Ever.

Tomorrow the Claw-Off will get a proper write up, and it’ll be on the Mermaid blog, too!

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I feel like myself. Last night I went out to dinner with my good friend Melissa, and while it was really not too long ago we had brunch together, it felt like so much had happened in that month and a half. It was really nice to meet up and relax, dining al fresco in the West Village. Oh, West Village I love you. You and your brownstones and your windy roads.

Melissa and I ended up settling at Extra Virgin, in one of the outdoor tables in the front, which allowed for more people watching (and really poor parallel parking skills watching). In the picture above, you will see the menus and we especially liked that the drink menu came as a little leather-bound journaly thing. We notice the little stuff.

This is Melissa’s Branzino, which came on a bed of mashed potatoes.

I opted for the lobster ravioli because it’s been extremely difficile to deny myself anything with lobster in it lately.

Of course we had to get something sweet to split at the end. Molten chocolate cake. Pretty good but not comparable to Gotham or Diner. Yeah, so I’m a pretty happy camper right now. Had a fabulous dinner with a fabulous friend and this weekend is looking to be pretty solid. So have a glorious one and take advantage of this beautiful weather!

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Um, HELLO it was gorgeous this weekend. Look at me in my new ChloƩ shades wearing one of my spring jackets without a scarf. I was even wearing flats. How refreshing!

So last weekend it was snowy, snowy and this weekend was nothing but sunshiiiiine in the skies! I had to go into the office on Saturday, which was a bummer, so I feel like I only had one night and one day of the weekend but I definitely made the best of it. Yesterday I ran in the morning through Prospect Park. The lake was very blue and I was very happy. Spring is almost here! Hopefully this is not a tease.

Anyway, onto brunch:

I met up with my good friend Melissa after the both of us had very eventful weeks and we ended up at Good over in the Village. It seems to be a pretty good spot (no pun intended, seriously).

Melissa had the basil and goat cheese scramble:

I think that kind of looks gorgeous. This is what brunch is all about (besides mimosas of course – which we didn’t even get).

Also had some cheese grits that were a little spicy:

I’m more of a home fries girl myself, which is good because that’s what I got with my mushroom, broccoli, and ricotta salata omelet:

I think I’m growing up because I never used to like mushrooms. Also, this was the first time in my entire life I’ve ever ordered an omelet. Sometimes I think I had a weird upbringing because we never ate omelets, never watched the Sound of Music and never went skiing. I don’t know if those things have anything to do with each other besides the fact that they all came up in conversation yesterday. And apparently I like omelets. The ricotta was hiding underneath the omelet and that was a nice surprise.

So Good is pretty good. I already said that.

Afterwards, Melissa and I went somewhere that pretty much every New Yorker has an opinion about. And that includes me. One day I think I will post the reasons why I think I can call myself a New Yorker (in fact, I will do that this week!) and tomorrow I will let you know what our second destination was. Here’s a hint: I should have bought some milk.

Happy Monday!

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What is thaaaaat?! It’s the best black-eyed-pea salsa this side of the Mississippi! I told you I have a favorite restaurant in the West Village and this is what it is: Cowgirl. Cowgirl! I love it! I can think of 18 bajillion people I have taken here and all 18 bajillion people love it. It’s Tex-Mex and it’s kitschy and this salad is the best thing in the whole wide world:

It’s All Chopped Up and it’s got chicken and avocado and apples and pecans and lemon poppy seed dressing and there is nothing better. Nothing, I tell you. I crave it probably once a week.

So there you have it. Cowgirl: my favorite casual restaurant in all of NYC. I’m thinking of all the friends I’ve taken there over the years and it’s pretty much everyone who’s ever been in town, so if you’re not on that list, you should be sad. And get on it immediately.

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