Monday, September 30, 2013

Quickie: Luke's Lobster

TL;DR: ★★★★☆

Luke's Lobster's lobster rolls always leave me speechless (took me a while to even construct this very sentence).

 7th St. & 1st. Ave. 
More locations in FiDi, UES, UWS, Brooklyn, etc.

HUGE hunks of lobster meat, seasoned with a generous amount of pepper, sandwiched between two soft, toasty buns — this sandwich is simply perfect.

The glorious lobster roll

Note, however, that it is on the pricey side — $15 for just the lobster roll, $17 for the roll with chips, a pickle and a soda and $20 for the roll, chips, pickle and beer (but there are cheaper alternatives, which I haven't tried, including (just) the crab roll for $12 and the shrimp roll for $8) — and the portions are quite small. Also, the staff is not even close to friendly, and the seating area is a dud (at least in the EV branch): very few counter-style seats along the walls of the small venue.

But in the end, it's worth it. Every bite is amazing except for the last, which will leave you disappointed that you scarfed down the entire roll in .08 seconds.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

DIY: Chocolate Peanut Butter Mug Cake


Mug cakes are hideous but taste pretty decent!

Chocolate peanut butter mug cake 
(If I were ever on Iron Chef America, I'd get minus points for the presentation category)

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

A Serious Flavor Punch: Zabb Elee

TL;DR: ★★★★☆

Insanely flavorful food at reasonable prices. Interesting and different, albeit confusing, menu (no Pad Thai or green curry here!), great ambiance and decor, but with slightly neglectful and slow service.

Food: ★★★★★
Ambiance: ★★★★★
Staff: ★★★☆☆

Price: $-$$
Number of visits: 2

2nd Ave. & 5th St.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Caffeine Rush: Coffee from Everywhere

Sadly, I am indeed one of those people who cannot function without a cup of coffee in the morning. Although I'm not too picky when it comes to the type or quality of the coffee I drink (i.e, I am in no way a coffee snob as I know next to nothing about it), I definitely do enjoy splurging a little on a nice, aromatic cup of joe, even if it costs more than I would normally like to spend on a beverage.  

After a long day at work, I was browsing the Internet when I came across this BuzzFeed post — hnnnngngnngngg, that Swedish coffee looks AMAZING — and was inspired to list the memorable and recommendable coffee shops and cafes I've visited in the city (and a couple elsewhere!).

*Note: I almost never drink my coffee black, which means I generally order lattes, cappuccinos, mochas, etc., so I can't speak for any of these places' drip or pour-over coffee, espresso shots or americanos.

Here they are in no particular order:

1. Stumptown Coffee Roasters — Flatiron, Greenwich Village

Of course, the ever-famous Stumptown. Ahhh, such beautiful, beautiful coffee. I've had the mocha and the latte (both hot and cold), and every single cup I've ordered has been incredibly rich and delicious. The latte is very smooth, and the aroma of coffee beans is intoxicating. The mocha is also smooth, with a strong, but not overwhelming, punch of chocolate. Both, especially the mocha, are very strong, so if you're sensitive to caffeine like I am, I would not drink one of these past 3 p.m.

The staff is super friendly (and hipster), and they always make pretty latte art, which is fun to Instagram.

Latte ($3.75)

Mocha ($4.25)

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Update: The City Bakery's "Cretzel"


The famous pretzel croissant from The City Bakery will leave you dehydrated for weeks. Would not recommend unless you enjoy the thrill of dehydration for some reason.

Pretzel croissant
5th Ave. & 18th St.

Click here for my first post on The City Bakery.

Monday, September 9, 2013

We Talkin' Bout: Flea Market Bistro


Cute French bistro that has great brunch. The space is very well-decorated with fun, historical French decor. Nice staff, good food and a reasonably priced menu — pretty sweet. 

Food: ★★★★★
Ambiance: ★★★★★
Staff: ★★★★

Price: $-$$
Number of visits: 2

131 Ave. A (Between 9th St. & St. Marks Pl.)

Friday, September 6, 2013

Amazeballs (Do People Still Say This?): Mamoun's


Probably the best falafel* I've ever had. Fast, cheap and delicious — not much else you can ask for.

Food: ★★★
Ambiance: ★★
Staff: ★★★

Price: $
Number of visits: 2

22 St. Marks Pl. (Between 2nd & 3rd Ave.)

*For those of you who don't know what falafel is, LOOK IT UP, YOU UNCULTURED SWINE. Just kidding, I didn't know either until last year. A traditional Middle Eastern food, falafel is ground chick peas rolled into balls with herbs and spices and deep fried.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Quickie: Bouchon Bakery



The famous Bouchon Bakery lives up to its hype. Out of chocolate, pistachio, caramel and peach macarons, chocolate totally floored me, peach made my taste buds sing, pistachio left me satisfied, and caramel ... well, let's say it was good that I started with it (i.e., good but not much to write home about). Unfortunately quite pricey ($2.50 for a mini macaron, $3.50 for bigger ones) but totally worth your money.

Clockwise: chocolate, caramel, peach and pistachio
1 Rockefeller Plaza