1) Peels (325 Bowery, NYC; East Village)
Affogato and a Build a Biscuit (fried chicken, fluffy scrambled eggs, and red eye gravy).
2) Il Laboratorio del Gelato (188 Ludlow Street, NYC; Lower East Side)
This gelateria is AMAZING. They have at least 40 flavors “on tap”. I got cookies and cream and mexican cinnamon on this trip. The line gets long when the weather gets nicer. If you can’t make it to the lab, you can also find it at a few retail locations.
3) Pok Pok Wing (137 Rivington Street, NYC; Lower East Side)
I’d gone to the original Pok Pok in Portland last year (oops, where’s that update!). I can’t remember if the wings taste the same, but overall, I felt that the wings were way overhyped. The decor of this little joint doesn’t help. If you live in the area, get takeout (they are on Seamless for pickup orders). We also tried a pork chop on bun which was underwhelming for a pork chop sandwich.
4) BaoBQ (229 First Avenue, NYC; East Village)
Mr. Bao has a reputation in East Village. He’s the owner of Baoguette (which has multiple locations) and was the owner of DOB 111. I’ve seen him walking around the neighborhood a few times. BaoBQ is his newest restaurant which is best described as Vietnamese street food.
The pork belly satay buns were ok – can’t be compared to Momofuku or Ippudo, but the jalapeno was a nice touch. The pork chop combo was awesome, as was the ga nuoung half chicken (they serve two types of roasted chicken and I read that this was the better one). I LOVE roasted cauliflower. I thought that was a very un-Asian touch. If you work in an area, this is a great lunch spot.
5) Xi’an Famous Foods (81 St Marks Place, NYC; East Village)
I get the N2 – Spicy and Tingly Beef Noodles.
6) Puddin’ (102 St Marks Place, NYC; East Village)
A few changes since I last mentioned Puddin’. They are now open from 9am to 2am, never seem to run out of pudding, and for those who are disciplined (but don’t care as much about value), there’s a mini size.