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sakana

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  1. I'm going to be in the area on Monday afternoon and was thinking I'd stop in and see if I could find a seat in the Bar Room. Are the odds there will be space for one between 12 and 1230pm pretty good, in your collective experience?
  2. I'm heading to BAM Rose Cinemas next weekend, and know nothing about the area. Could you guys recommend a couple of good places for dinner? I'm not there very often, so if anything is a must-visit, please let me know.
  3. I've never been, to Shopsin's, but via an old Jason Kottke post, here's a piece Calvin Trillin wrote about it in 2002.
  4. One year when I was at Vassar my housemates and I would eat at (or get takeout from) Saigon Cafe literally 7-10 times a week, often getting both lunch and dinner from there. The owner is an awesome guy who makes great, cheap food. God. I haven't thought about that place in years. We also used to go to New Paltz to eat at a place in a stripmall that we loved - Main Course, I think. I wasn't very sophisticated about food then (not that I am now, but I was even less so in college), but I remember that we thought it tasted really good....
  5. sakana

    Babbo

    I went a few months ago and got a seat easily on a weeknight by showing up slightly before the bar opened (it opens at 430, I waited outside with a handful of others from about 420) - that way I was assured of a spot at the bar once eating is an option (5pm). You can also try to wait for what's basically the second seating, when the early birds finish, but that's so hard to pinpoint that I elected just to eat early.
  6. If you don't mind, I'd love to expand this question slightly so that it's not only about where to get fresh sardines, but also about places in Manhattan to get sardines prepared in the traditional style you're describing (I've been craving them since I got back from Portugal a year ago). I know there are some Portuguese restaurants around, but reviews that I've seen for most of them are mixed at best, and I'm afraid to go and be horribly disappointed.
  7. As I'll be moving to Manhattan in about a month, I'm very curious about this topic-- anyone with any UES suggestions, please post them/pass them along!
  8. From what I've read, no one could vote via the website-- oops. (Which of course begs the question of how much voting there really was. Good thing we're the only ones watching, otherwise they'd have a big, American Idol-style scandal on their hands.) I decided a few weeks ago that I'd be most interested in watching Hans, but that Dan and Steve would be my second choice-- Deborah's "charm" is like nails on a chalkboard to me, so I'm please she didn't prevail. I'll at least give Dan and Steve's show a chance; my guess is that it'll at least be entertaining, if not enlightening.
  9. sakana

    Babbo

    Just got back from my first meal at Babbo-- while it's hard for me to separate the food from a wonderful evening in general, I would say it was one of the most enjoyable eating experiences I've ever had. I showed up (alone) at about 445 and join the short queue; upon getting seated at the bar, I ordered a gin and tonic and settled in. The bartender (I'm TERRIBLE with names, but his involved initials-- LD, or LB, or LQ or something) was wonderful-- young and laid back and incredibly friendly, and I ended up eating with some very cool people as well, all of which contributed a lot to the experience being such a positive one. Anyway, what I ate: octopus (surpassed the grilled octopus I had in Porto last summer as the best I've ever had-- the sweetness of it was shocking and addictive), asparagus with duck egg, which was quite good (and I don't like eggs), and grilled branzino (wonderfully simple and light, especially after the intensity of the octopus). For dessert on the recommendation of the bartender I had something involving rhubarb which was also solidly good. I know nothing at all about wine, but I had a rose that went very well with the octopus. Overall, as I said, a top-notch experience. I can't wait to take other people there.
  10. sakana

    Babbo

    I know that single diners at Babbo generally eat at the bar, but I'd love some feedback about when to show up. If necessary, I'm willing to be there at opening and just eat super early-- does anyone have any experience with slightly later times, say 630-7? I'll be there on a weeknight, probably early in the week. Also, is the atmosphere friendly to those eating alone, or is there a feeling of WE NEED YOUR SEAT! I mean, are they willing to do tasting menus and/or pairings for single diners? Any info/tips would be appreciated!
  11. Reopening this long-dead thread to share my utter obsession with the product @ Hummus Place. It's honestly one of my favorite places to eat in all of Manhattan-- I hesitate to ask this, but is there anywhere that's even better?
  12. I believe I read in a review that the tables in the bar are half first-come and half for reservation-- or did I just make that up?
  13. For those interested in the design of The Modern, there's a long, fascinating article about the planning and execution of the design in the current (as in brand new-- it's not even up on the website yet) issue of Metropolis Magazine.
  14. It kills me to be a sheep but on the Uptown girly breakfast tip, if someone got between me and my plate of Sarabeth's breakfast potatoes I could kill without a second thought. The rest of their breakfast/brunch stuff that I've had (pancakes, omelets) is ok and all, but those potatoes are mind-blowing.
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