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Katz's Delicatessen

May 4, 2009 | Our next stop was the famous Katz's Deli (yelp) for their pastrami and rye for a whopping $14.95!  It was more than enough for both Monica and I.  




 

As simple as it looks, the meat was sooo good.  It was just perfect.  Oh yeah, and we got some pickles too.

It's counter service at Katz's Deli.  You're handed a ticket as you walk in and whenever you make an order, the person behind the counter write down your order.  You're not charged until you head towards the exit, where the cashier is, who totals the stuff on your ticket.  FYI-- it's a $50 charge if you lose your ticket!! We had a brief scare...

For this one sandwich, it gets a 8.5 out of 10. It's expensive for a sandwich!

Russ & Daughters Appetizers

May 4, 2009 | Mmmm.  Our bagel from Russ & Daughters (yelp) was probably one of the most memorable items of food that I had on this trip.  We shared a "Classic," which was a bagel and cream cheese with Norweigan smoked salmon mini for $5.45.  


See the assortment of cream cheeses and caivar?


*drool*

Ahhh, soooo good!!  I'm not even really a bagel-type of person but mann, this one was delicious.  It made me very happy to eat this. 

It gets a 9.5 out of 10

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Yonah Shimmel Knish Bakery

May 4, 2009 | The first stop of our Lower East Side was the Yonah Shimmel Knish Bakery (yelp).We got a spinach knish for $3.50. 


 
I'd never heard of knishes until that day.  Knishes were made popular in the U.S. by Jewish immigrants and has a filling made almost entirely by potatoes.  This one was potato and spinach.   We asked for ours to be heated up and ended up eating up the outside of the knish before I finally took a picture--
 

 
Not bad, but eh, it wasn't awesome like I thought it'd be.  Maybe we should have tried the original with mustard or something?  *shrugs* 

For now, it get's a 5.5 out of 10
 

Babbo Ristorante Enoteca

May 3, 2009 | In case you haven't heard of it, Babbo Ristorante Enoteca (yelp) is the creation of celebrity chef Mario Batali.  Babbo is a cute place (it turns out I find many New York restaurants cute).  It's bigger than it looks.  See?


 
Decor and ambience aside, I found the food, for the price, to be good.  Just good though.  i wasn't all that impressed and if I ever were to return, I'd probably try the pasta multi-course meal (I hear it's what the place is supposed to be known for!)  

We started with a wine-- Etna Rosoos Calabretta 1999, as recommended by the waitress, and the complimentary appetizer-- I think it was a chickpea bruchetta.
 



It was okay.Not crazy about the chickpeas.  We ordered a bunch of dishes to share.  Next came our seafood dishes-- Grilled Octopus with “Borlotti Marinati” and Spicy Limoncello Vinaigrette ($15) and a Soft-shelled Crab dish.

 



 

We also ordered Tagliaroni, Rabbit  with Peas, Babbo Pancetta and Carrot Vinaigrette ($28), and I think the last one was Osso bucco?  We ordered a few of the specials so I didn't get all the info down for those. 
 





 
I recall the rabbit being pretty good.  Everything else was okay.  The pasta was made well but it was a meat-less dish and was a little boring for me.  For dessert, we shared a Chocolate Hazelnut Cake with Orange Sauce and Hazelnut Gelato ($12) and a Banana upsidedown cake with banana buttermilk gelato and cardamon pecans.
 



 
Now that banana upside down cake was good.  We devoured it!! (As you can see in the picture, we just couldn't wait!)  

It was a very expensive meal, the serve was superb, but the food was a bit disappointing.  I'd have to give it a 6.5 out of 10, but I'm open to going back if the opportunity comes (although I'd more likely try somewhere else). 

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Red Mango

May 3, 2009 | This was another one of my requests-- some green tea frozen yogurt!  The last time I had Red Mango was in Hawaii and I was really excited to have it again!


=D

Big Wong King Restaurant

May 3, 2009 | I was craving some congee so Monica brought me here.  We got the congee with thousand year old egg and pork, and 
fried bread sticks.  We ended up taking the food to go and stopping at Whole Foods to eat it. 



It was very enjoyable though I've almost always had good congee, haha.  We were pretty full at this point so we ended up throwing out what we couldn't finish.  I know, it's very unlike me!  I always keep leftovers and avoid wasting food. 

I'm giving it a 8.5 out of 10 for the congee!

Chinese Street Vendor

May 3, 2009 | This isn't a restaurant but still worthy of a post! 

Monica and I were leaving New Yeah Shanghai Deluxe and came across one of those Chinese street vendors with the $1 Chinese hot cakes!! 


Mmm, light and fluffy cakes!  So yummy!

New Yeah Shanghai Deluxe

May 3, 2009 |  Monica brought me here a couple of years ago and it was yummy enough for us to go back for more xiao long bao (aka juicy buns soup dumplings)!  i hear there's other places that are even better, but that'll have to wait until next time. 

New Yeah Shanghai Deluxe
65 Bayard Street, 10013
- Juicy Buns 8 for $3.95 (x2)
- Scallion Pancake $1.50

We were planning on eating more that day so we didn't get TOO much food!  Scallion pancakes were good, but I've had a lot of good scallion pancakes and I can't say these were the most memorable.  I like them super crispy, not too thick.




 
Gotta love good, cheap, Chinese food!  I give the place a 8 out of 10.  It's those juicy buns, I tell ya!
 

Pearl Oyster Bar

May 2, 2009 | I chose this restaurant for the sole purpose of trying the lobster roll. I was surprised by how packed it was when we arrived! However, it's a good sign so it was cool. It gave us the opportunity to go next door to Home Restaurant!


Pearl's Oyster Bar (yelp), 18 Cornelia Street, 10014
Mussels ($10)
Smoked salmon, Johnny cake ($16)
Lobster roll with shoestring fries ($28, priced seasonally)







 
Everything was delicious.  Seriously.  The lobster roll was everything that I wanted it to be.  The roll was sooo good and buttery!  The filling was delicious.  I've never had a Johnny cake, but it tasted really good with the smoked salmon and sour cream.  The clams were also really good!  I'm always afraid that clams will be rubbery or dry but these were just the way it should be. 

The service was also awesome.  When we first sat, we were seated in the very back, in front of the ac.  Well, we were cold so they moved us to a seat up front, corner, in front of the windows.