Thursday, October 22, 2009

Some New York City Favorites...

Last week I headed out to New York for work. I extended my stay through the weekend, and my friend Ashley flew out to meet me. Unfortunately, she brought all the rainstorms from California with her (it’s all her fault!!) – so it was a lovely 40-ish degrees with wind chills of 22 degrees and sporadic storms. BUT we still had a fabulous time and, of course, dined on great food. Here’s some of the highlights:

Polenta with Cippolini Onions, Wild Mushrooms, and Arugula (Inoteca Vino e Cucina )

This is the perfect warm-you-up dish. The onions and mushrooms were slow cooked and carmelized, and the polenta had the comfort-feeling of mashed potatoes, but with the texture and sweetness of corn meal.

Squash Blossoms (Crispo Restaurant)
The blossoms were stuffed with 3 different types of Italian cheese and then lightly tempura battered (so you didn’t feel all greasy and gross) and served with a flavorful marinara-esque sauce.

The Upper Westside Concrete (Shake Shack)
Shake Shack is one of my all time favorite burgers in the U.S. I think I even like it better than (gasp!) In 'N Out. Their milkshakes with mix-ins are SO thick, they have to call them Concretes. Ashley and my pick came with vanilla custard, chocolate toffee, caramel sauce, and chocolate chips. It would cure any sweet tooth.

Pain Au Chocolat (Claude Patisserie)

This place is my favorite secret find of New York. Bourbon discovered it on Yelp a year or so back because we both have an incurable obsession with chocolate croissants. These croissants rival those from Paris, which makes sense as the owner is from France. Two of the three times I’ve been there, the croissants are hot out of the oven. The chocolate oozes out and the pastry is flaky and soft in the middle. This time, the croissant had reached room temperature, but to my surprise (and delight!) the chocolate inside was still gooey. Grab a croissant and great cup of coffee (ask for milk!) for less than $5. If the weather permits, sit outside at one of the dozens of small bench parks.
.....i heart ny.....

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