1) Buttermilk Channel (524 Court Street, Brooklyn; Carroll Gardens)
It takes a lot to get me up before 10am on a weekend. I wanted to go to the Brooklyn designer sale when they opened at noon and I also wanted to eat here without a wait (read: arrive around 10am, Yelp reviews for Buttermilk Channel mentioned a long wait). I am happy to report that there were no lines near opening and I got a fresh pick of the Baggu bags at the sale. The sale paled in comparison with their December sale in selection, but the prices were lower.
Buttermilk Channel refers to the strait between Brooklyn and Governors Island that used to be frequented by dairy farmers back in the day. The cuisine is Southern with a twist. The brunch menu is extensive enough to please everyone. The fried pork chop & cheddar waffles with maple syrup is the perfect dish for those who love sweet and savory. The pork chop was pretty lean and perfectly fried/seasoned. The cheddar waffle reminded me of Cheez It crackers, in a good way. The short rib hash with toast and eggs was well seasoned and simple. Up until this point, I kept on thinking my mom could totally make these dishes. She makes a great pork chop and the short rib hash tastes similar to her Chinese-style rib dishes. Of course we had to try the buttermilk pancakes. They were decadent and reminded me of shortbread cookies.
2) Brindle Room (277 East 10th Street, NYC; East Village)
I noticed SeamlessWeb added a bunch of restaurants recently. I hate figuring out what to eat when I’m really hungry and the plethora of options in this neighborhood, or NYC in general, does not make decision making any easier! Figuring out what to eat often trumps most work-related decisions in difficulty. One can only eat so many toast-and-yogurt meals.
I ended up ordering the Brindle Room burger. According to online research, the burger is made of leftover trimmings from the owner’s steakhouse in NJ, where the steak is dry aged. A Yelper compared it to Minetta Tavern’s Black Label burger, so I had to try it. I’m sad to report that this burger was tasty, but mediocre, and the fries were a massive oversalted mess. The poor spuds died in vain.
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Edi & the Wolf (East Village) – Brunch. Super fluffy scrambled eggs with crispy onions and speck.
Torrisi (Nolita, previously featured here) – Limited seating every night. Menu changes every day depending on what is in season. We got a table for 9:30pm. The antipasti consisted of fresh mozzarella and toast (AMAZING), sweetbreads, seafood salad, and another salad. We had the gnocchi, which were fluffy little pillows of goodness. For the main, we shared the John Dory (which wasn’t cooked with marsala as stated on the menu), the bbq lamb, and an amazing shortrib (we cleaned the bone real good). The house pastry was an assortment of cookies, after a quick grapefruit sorbet palate cleanser. The rainbow cookie and fresh cream puff were faves. The celery salt cookies were not. You can take away cookies $0.50/per.
Manhattan Cocktail Classic “British Invasion” event at Eleven Madison Park (Flatiron) – This was on the EMP “patio”. The charming Crooners played Beatles songs for hours and they passed around excellent fish and chips. I won’t mention how many I had, but it made me miss my trip to Ireland last May! There were 6 signature cocktails and table service :)
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Here’s a smorgasbord of stuff I ate in NYC and LA.
Brindle Room fresh donuts – Caramel donut made out of mashed potatoes. Surprisingly light. Made to order.
酒釀 (sweet fermented rice) – This is a common winter comfort dessert. My mom has been making this for decades. It smells like rice wine. We usually cook it with eggs, rice balls, or mandarin oranges. I was about to eat some today, when I realized my roommate had thrown my tub out… :(
Bespoke Chocolates – Sadly, this chocolate shop just shuttered last week. They have beautifully crafted artisan chocolate and was hidden in an alley near Houston St. Pretzel-Covered Sea-Salted Caramels, Venezuelan Dark Chocolate Cognac, Southampton Tea Truffle, Strawberry Balsamic, and Lavender Honey Fleur de Sel Caramel seen below.
Pulino’s – Brunch! I discovered sausage gravy and biscuits in my college dorm. I have yet to meet an unsatisfactory version of this dish.
Newport Seafood – I’ve been wanting to eat at Newport Seafood ever since I saw it on Oh Joy!’s blog. I LOOOOVE Chinese-style seafood. My friend J and her husband indulged me on my quick trip to LA. We had the clams with black bean sauce, their popular beef loc lac, a healthy dose of pea sprouts, and their special lobster.
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I consider a cup of joe from the Mud truck to be one of my simplest pleasures. The truck sits outside of the East Village Astor Place subway station, which is on my way to work. I grab a cup if the line isn’t obscene and I am not in a random caffeine cutting mood. They also have a storefront nearby at E 9th and Second Avenue, but they only serve coffee in the large cups.