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Report on New York Restaurants


Harry91
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Hey everyone, just got back from a 4 day trip to New York. Started on Wednesday night with a dinner at Spotted Pig where i had the Devils On Horseback (pear inside a date wrapped in bacon). As well as the fried green tomatoes (served with maple syrup, yum), calfs liver, tried the burger (pretty good) and had an apricot tart for desert (easily the best part of the meal). Next day was lunch at Jean George, had a nice shrimp app and a pork dish for entree. Best part again was desert, a blueberry/nectarine pastry. Oh, and apparantly the girl Lia is the exec chef there (from Top Chef Season 3). That night was dinner at Gotham Bar and Grill. Oh dear god. Had a foie gras and muscovy duck terrine for app and soft shell crab for entree. Those crab were easily the best i've ever had. Desert was there "Smore" and a Key Lime Sufflee (both amazing). Finally next day was dinner at Perilla. The chef is Harold, the winner of Top Chef season 1. For app i had a pork belly dish, which was orgasmic. And entree was a nice ravioli of mushrooms, ricotta, peas. Didnt have desert there, but got some cupcakes at Magnolia Bakery (which are pretty much heaven in your mouth). The last day i ate at Momofuku Ssam bar (nice little korean buritto place) and Ruby Foos (GREAT dim sum).

-harry

P.S. would post pics, but somehow lost my disposeable camera

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"Didnt have desert there, but got some cupcakes at Magnolia Bakery (which are pretty much heaven in your mouth). The last day i ate at Momofuku Ssam bar (nice little korean buritto place) and Ruby Foos (GREAT dim sum)."

I take it you didn't check the relevant forum threads before this trip.

edit: glad you enjoyed your trip and thanks for reminding us about Gotham B & G...a place that despite its excellence is too easily forgotten about.

Edited by Nathan (log)
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or good cupcakes at Magnolia....or Ssam Bar being merely burritos....

I know I shouldn't beat a dead horse, but I'll just post what Dave H once wrote about Magnolia cupcakes. It pretty much sums it up.

"Magnolia's cupcakes are disgusting. It's not that I hate cupcakes: the ones from Sugar Sweet Sunshine in the LES are kind of good, for instance. I mean, they're fine. They stand up to the memories of cupcakes from my early childhood, which is probably an indication they're actually considerably better.

It's just the cupcakes from Magnolia. They're revolting. I finally relented and tried one last spring, having avoided them for years out of a sincerely felt cultural disdain, although I'd certainly always assumed they tasted alright. It was late on a cold weekday evening (we were coming back from dinner at Delicia, a great, homey Brazilian place on W. 12th, but if you've ever eaten there you know the pace of the service is such that you don't get out until late), so by the time we passed Magnolia there was just a short line of callow 20-year-old girls outside, and a scrum of them within, fogging up the windows, loitering disorganizedly and pouncing every time a new tray of cupcakes was brought out from the back. A fresh tray of purple-headed ones came out. We grabbed one and quickly paid. I stepped outside and took a bite...

...and I was floored. It was perhaps the single worst-tasting thing I had ever put in my mouth. The icing is a dead-ringer for a block of vegetable shortening whipped with food coloring and tremendous quantities of sugar. Except that it's actually much sweeter than a mouthful of plain cane sugar, plus there's a faint chemical tinge. So more like shortening and industrial sucralose. Also I remember a hint of vomit taste. I stumbled forward in a haze, so paralyzed by shock that my body failed to do the obvious thing (spit it out and toss the rest). It was sort of like that point in the movie where a character gets shot in the chest when they least expect it, and they look down at the bullet hole with an expression of wonder and surprise. I was so stunned I took another bite, at least avoiding most of the icing out of self-preservation and instead getting almost all cake.

In an evenly mixed bite, the sweetener-powered icing is so overwhelming that you can't taste anything else. But if you actually eat just the cake part you discover that it is coarse and dry to the point of tasting stale, closely resembling bad two-day old cornbread minus the corn taste. This was astonishing because it certainly seemed like the tray of cupcakes had just been iced, presumably somewhat fresh from the oven. But then everything about the experience was astonishing.

Reflecting on Magnolia and its role in igniting New York's (and apparently now America's) inane cupcake trend fills me alternately with contempt for the human race and despair for its future."

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Wow. WOW.

I've had Magnolia cupcakes. At an office I worked at, they'd have cupcakes instead of bday cakes. We'd cut them in half the way you'd cut a stick of butter in half before eating them whole.

I certainly don't think they were bad, I mean I'm sure they're good in moderation, but too much would be undesirable, just like hard drugs.

But I seriously doubt they tasted like vomit. I think what we're seeing here is a serious reverse-hype/backlash response. As much as I hate the idolization despite the fact that there's better cupcakes to be had in the city unless you're a buttercreme addict, before AND after Lazy Sundays, that doesn't restrict my ability to enjoy the stupid cupcake if some jerkoff wants to go wait on line for me.

blech

Edited by raji (log)
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