Maialino


Sundays in NYC always mean brunch to me which eventually lead to a long day of enjoyment that I like to call Sunday Funday.  A little quirky?  Yeah.  Corny?  Sure.  Bordering a bit on childish?  Kind of.  Fun as sh*t?  Absolutely.  I had heard a lot about a Danny Meyer Italian restaurant called Maialino (Italian for Piglet) located in the Gramercy Park Hotel and so we decided to head down there for some brunch.  The hotel itself is pretty elegant and I wasn't expecting the casual surprise of a place like Mailino.  The space reminded me of the Tabard Inn and any place with a view of Gramercy Park is always a welcome place to eat.

0 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Ippudo

65 4th Ave
New York, NY 10003
212.388.0088
www.ippudony.com
Ippudo on Urbanspoon

It seemed like all my friends were either working or doing some sort of volunteering on Saturday so I was on my own for an...ahem...late lunch.  I was all set to either walk two blocks and go to Num Pang or just take a short cab ride to Momofuku.  But, I remembered a conversation I had with one of Sakuramen's owners and he had mentioned Ippudo for a place to go to when you want ramen in NYC.  I looked them up quickly and headed down to the East Village.

0 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Ken & Cook

19 Kenmare St
New York, NY 10012
212.966.3058
www.kenandcook.com
Ken & Cook on Urbanspoon

In continuing with new experiences for this week, I headed up to NYC for the weekend to spend some time with good friends.  My flimsy excuse (like I need one) was an e-mail from someone at Ken & Cook saying this:

I came across your blog on foodnomad and find it very interesting and well written. It would be a great honor to host you at our restaurant Ken and Cook in Nolita at 19 Kenmare St and get reviewed by you.

Our executive chef Richard Diamonte and partner Artan Gjoni (both veterans at Jean Georges’) including myself look forward to seeing you here.
Whaaat?

2 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

WEST. Kitchen & Tavern

126 West Street
Annapolis, MD 21401
410.263.7777
www.annapoliswestkt.com
West Kitchen & Tavern on Urbanspoon

I got this e-mail the other day:
Congratulations! Your e-mail has been selected as the PRIZE winner of 2,000,000.00 in Promotion Held September, 2012 in Europe.
Umm....wait.  I did get that e-mail and usually I'd be stoked about winning 2 million of something but I'm still trying to help an African prince reclaim his fortune.  The e-mail I wanted to show you was this:

0 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Family Meal

880 N. East Street
Frederick, MD 21701
301.378.2895
www.voltfamilymeal.com
Family Meal on Urbanspoon

When is a diner not a diner?  The correct answer is usually, "when the chicken isn't the duck."  This time, however, it's when a former Top Chef contestant converts what looks like a former showroom of some sort into a "classic, American diner".  Bryan Voltaggio of Top Chef and Volt fame has expanded his empire in Frederick, MD by opening up Family Meal in a surprisingly industrial part of town.  The whole place looks like a gussied up diner but with the obvious Volt connections from the PBR on the menu to the service staff's uniforms (jeans and Chucks).  So, on my way home from Ellicott City, I took a slight...um....wide detour through Frederick and got some lunch at this newly opened 'elevated' diner.

1 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Of Love And Regret

1028 S Conkling St
Baltimore, MD 21224
410.327.0760
www.ofloveandregret.com
Of Love and Regret on Urbanspoon

When I was a much younger man, my friends and I used to frequent the Good Love Bar in Canton neighborhood of Baltimore.  This was early on in it's history before it suffered from a fire and before it became caught up in the bar/club/DJ scene.  The place had a nice, hip vibe with great drinks and lots of dark nooks and crannies to get lost in.  When I saw that a gastropub called Of Love and Regret had recently opened up in Canton, I thought it to be a nice little evolution from my younger days.  Besides, considering my life was full of both love and regret, how could you resist visiting a place like named after your own story.

3 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Ravi Kabob House

250 N Glebe Rd
Arlington, VA 22203
703.816.0222
www.ravikabobusa.com
Ravi Kabob House on Urbanspoon

I don't remember Ravi Kabob when I lived in Arlington a little over a decade ago but my work hours were crazy back then and I thought Ruth's Chris Steakhouse was at the top of my food food chain.  I could have used another word instead of using 'food' twice but a food food chain is not too far from a foo foo chain which sounds like an awesome thing.  It's not that I think that Ruth's Chris is bad.  It's that I thought that was the only type of fine dining restaurant that existed.  It's amazing what a decade and living in NYC does to one's culinary tastes.  Well, since I've come back, I've been told by just about everyone I've asked that Ravi Kabob is on the required reading list when it comes to DC food hot spots.

2 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Kushi Izakaya & Sushi

465 K St. NW
Washington, DC 20001
202.682.3123
www.eatkushi.com
Kushi Izakaya & Sushi on Urbanspoon

There's this phenomena that I've noticed in DC where upscale apartment buildings also house retail shops, restaurants, grocery stores, and any other conveniences that a resident may want or need.  It's like a hotel but on a larger scale.  I guess this may be what they refer to as "bethesdafication" and it was in one of these types of "bethesdafied" buildings that I found Kushi Izakaya & Sushi.  It's in a neighborhood caught in between the trendiness of Penn Quarter and the cool hipness of H street.  The building also has Chipotle, Safeway, Busboys & Poets (which I very much need to visit) and so much more.  I guess if you're aiming for one-stop shopping, you'll want to live here.

1 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Boundary Road

414 H St NE
Washington, DC 20002
202.450.3265
www.boundaryrd.com
Boundary Road Restaurant on Urbanspoon

This week, work's been a bit of a bear so I haven't gotten to eat anything that was a) good for more and b) just good.  I have managed to funnel some good money into delivery pizza and fast food so I'm glad I'm doing my part in keeping the economy going.  The weekend, though, allowed me a few windows of time where I could venture out and get a few quality bites.  I was feeling a bit brunchy hence I went to brunch (yes I just wrote that sweet piece of logical deduction).  On Saturday, I decided to head out to Bar Pilar for a quick bite (a more detailed post will happen when I go back for dinner) and then Boundary Road on Sunday for a more involved brunch.

5 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Toki Underground

1234 H Street, NE
Washington, DC 20002
202.388.3086
www.tokiunderground.com
Toki Underground on Urbanspoon

I'm a member of donrockwell.com which is a very big and very active forum for people who love food.  There was a thread on there discussing Sakuramen and one of the latest posts gave the place a pretty negative review.  I was in disagreement with the post so I wrote about my experience and near the very end I said something like, "It's not Momofuku...blah, blah, blah".  So, a subsequent poster said, "Why does it have to be Momofuku?"  Well, I was going to respond but I like those forums so I didn't want to start an argument.  But, all I kept thinking was, "Well, because I like Momofuku, duh."

2 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Pearl Dive Oyster Palace

1612 14th St NW
Washington, DC 20009
202.986.8778
www.pearldivedc.com
Pearl Dive Oyster Palace on Urbanspoon

For me, having a good meal is just as much about the food as it is about the people you're eating with. The ambience is important too but I find that you can make up for a lot of things if you really enjoy the company.  This was never more evident to me as when a good friend of mine came to DC and we had lunch.  We've had a lot of really good meals together from Dell'Anima to Sushi of Gari to Dieci to Sorella to RedFarm and I wanted to make sure we headed to a good place.  So, I chose to go to Pearl Dive Oyster Palace, yet another restaurant in the Black Restaurant Group.

2 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Virtue Feed & Grain (Take two)




I read somewhere that Virtue Feed & Grain had been nominated by Bon Appetit as one of the 50 best new restaurants in America.  The first thing I thought, was "waitaminute, I went there back in January...how can it still be a new restaurant?"  Oh.  It probably had only been open for a short while in January.  My second thought was that they had probably sufficiently worked out all the new restaurant quirks and it's now getting nationwide recognition.  Coincidentally, I had some friends come into town that were staying in Old Town Alexandria and wanted to meet up for some dinner and drinks.  Two birds and one stone later, we decided on an early dinner (6ish) at Virtue Feed & Grain.  Make that three birds, this is officially my first return visit to a place that I've blogged about and am blogging about again.  Yeah, just go with it.

0 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Food We Love: Barbecue


I've surprised myself about all the barbecue I've written about in this blog.  Blue Smoke, The Canopy, Rocklands, The Pig and that order at Waterman's comes to mind.  I never realized just how much eat and just how much I enjoy some good barbecue.  I am a big fan of slow cooking meat in a smoker and letting all that flavor from a rub or a sauce soak in.  So, when I got this e-mail after I got back from North Carolina, I jumped at the chance to get a better education about real barbecue.

0 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Café Dupont

1500 New Hampshire Ave NW
Washington, DC 20036
202.797.0169
www.doylecollection.com/restaurants/café_dupont.aspx
Cafe Dupont on Urbanspoon

My mom loves Julia Child.  She's seen Julia and Julia several times and her go-to recipes for almost anything begins and ends with Julia Child.  Her and I have spent countless holidays making Julia's tarte tatin recipe.  I don't even know if that's the proper title but that's what it's called in my family.  So, when I saw that some restaurants in DC were celebrating Julia Childs' 100th birthday, we decided to try the prix fixe menu specially for the occasion at Cafe Dupont, located in the Dupont Circle Hotel.

1 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Tour of Beer: World of Beer


901 N. Glebe Rd.
Arlington, VA 22203
703.962.6982
http://wobusa.com/Locations/ArlingtonVA.aspx
World of Beer on Urbanspoon

So......

This place opened a block away from where I live in Ballston.  It's the latest in a chain of bar across the US that serves, I think, over 500 beers on tap and in bottles at all their locations.  They have a small menu that consists of basically pretzels and hot dogs but allow you to order from other places in the neighborhood and bring your own food in.  They've got the pre-requisite cute waitresses, lots and lots of TVs, and even sometimes have live entertainment.  They even have this loyalty program that comes with a t-shirt.  Blah. Blah. Blah.

0 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Earl's

2605 Wilson Blvd
Arlington, VA 2220
703.248.0150
www.earlsinarlington.com
Earl's on Urbanspoon

I have a confession.  I am not Joey Tribbiani.  About half of you just went, "Who the f*ck is Joey Tribbiani?"   Some of you are thinking, "Of course you're not a character from a TV show that went off the air 8 years ago".  Then there's the three...um...two of you saying, "Yeah, you don't seem like a sandwich guy".  If you're still confused, here's one more hint:  "Ms. Chanandler Bong".  But, yeah, I'm not a sandwich guy.  I could be a burger guy but I don't consider them in the same food group as sandwiches (an inadvertent hint!).   It's not that I don't like sandwiches but they would never be my first or even third choice for a meal.  I think it's just a simple case of preferring hot food over cold food and I've always associated sandwiches with cold food unfair as that may be.

2 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Izakaya Seki

1117 V Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
202.588.5841
www.sekidc.com
Izakaya Seki on Urbanspoon

After a long weekend of eating really rich, really not good for you foods, I wanted something clean & simple for dinner.  I thought about making my return trip to Toki Underground but ramen didn't quite feel right.  Then, I remembered that Izakaya Seki had just opened up last week and that the menu was really intriguing. So, off to 'authentic' Japanese-cuisine land I went.  Now, I have no idea what 'authentic' Japanese cuisine really is but there was enough promise in the menu for a good and healthy meal that I couldn't resist.

0 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Waterman's Crab House

21055 Sharp St
Rock Hall, MD 21661
410.639.2261
www.watermanscrabhouse.com
Waterman's Crab House on Urbanspoon

The father of a good friend of ours' is in a band that plays 50s & 60s music and this past weekend, they played in Rock Hall, MD.  This was the perfect excuse for a bunch of us to meet up somewhere that wasn't a big city and it's never a bad thing to go to the Eastern Shore.  This isn't the Eastern Shore of Ocean City, MD or any of those beach towns up and down the Atlantic Coast.  This is the Eastern Shore where you take a quick left after Kent Narrows (instead of the right to Ocean City, hon) and into sprawling farmlands and winding waterways.

3 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Oby Lee

3000 Washington Blvd
Arlington, VA 22201
571.257.5054
www.obylee.com
Oby Lee on Urbanspoon

I've been looking forward to trying out Oby Lee ever since I saw the signage go up since this combination coffee shop & wine bar is directly on my way to and from work.  The other coffee shops in the area (Northside Social and the local Starbucks) both require a slight detour which, if you're late for work, is a huge detour for much needed coffee in the morning.  Oby Lee let's me pull right up, get a coffee, maybe some breakfast, and not lose an extra minute.  So, this past week, I stopped by for a couple of breakfasts and a quick dinner.

1 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Ray's Hell Burger

1725 Wilson Blvd
Arlington, VA 22209
703.841.0001
www.rayshellburger.com
Ray's Hell Burger on Urbanspoon

As you can tell from my weekend in North Cackalackey, I've been eating pretty good and unfortunately, pretty heavy.  So, for today at lunch, I was thinking that I want something healthy to eat.  (Eyes on the post, please.  I see you suspiciously looking up at the title of the post).  I looked around to see what was close and decided that Ray's Hell Burger was the place to go for some healthy goodness.  Okay, okay, so I didn't find any of the healthier options appealing today so I made a beeline for perhaps (you'll see later) the most unhealthy option of all.  Don't judge.

3 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Fearrington House Inn

2000 Fearrington Village
Pittsboro, NC 27312
919.542.2121
www.fearrington.com/house/restaurant.asp
The Fearrington House Restaurant on Urbanspoon

As we were planning our trip to North Carolina, my aunt insisted that we had to have dinner at the Fearrington House Inn or rather the restaurant at the Fearrington House Inn.  So, for our last night down there, I made reservations for just my parents, my niece and myself for an early dinner.  The Inn is nestled in Fearrington Village which is this collection of shops, restaurants, a small farm, a spa, an inn, and other amenities located just south of Chapel Hill.  The whole village is quaint, elegant and very southern as the Inn itself resembles an old Southern estate.

4 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

The Pig (Chapel Hill, NC)

630 Weaver Dairy Road
Chapel Hill, NC 27514
919.942.1133
www.thepigrestaurant.com
The Pig on Urbanspoon

Do you think there's an issue with my restaurant choices when I've now written posts about Honey Pig, the Green Pig Bistro, The Pig, and The Pig again (this time in Chapel Hill, NC)? There's no problem there right? It was rhetorical.  I can't help it if I love all things pig.  I bet you do too and besides, I was in North Carolina and you can't be in North Carolina without at least trying some barbecue down there.  A placed named The Pig is always a good place to start when it comes to barbecue.

I found out about the Pig from my cousin when we were eating dinner at Lantern.  He sure doesn't share or comment about his food but he sure can give a good restaurant recommendation.  After doing some more research (namely on Lantern's website), I saw that the proprietor at the Pig was a Lantern alumnus who's opened his own whole pig, locally-sourced, and everything made from scratch BBQ place in Chapel Hill, or at least very close to it.  So, I packed the 'rents and the niece into the car for a late BBQ lunch.


1 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Lantern

423 W Franklin St
Chapel Hill, NC 27516
919.969.8846
www.lanternrestaurant.com
Lantern on Urbanspoon

I haven't been at this blogging thing for very long (well, almost 6 months now.  Wow.) but I have noticed that, like anything, it has it's tedious parts where you have to kind of force yourself to write a post (almost feels like a job) after a lukewarm experience and then there are some instances when you can't wait to get home and start writing because the experience was so great.  Lantern is one of those places.

0 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.

Cracker Barrel

12401 Redwater Creek Rd
Chester, VA 23831
804.748.4032
www.crackerbarrel.com
Cracker Barrel on Urbanspoon

What?

That's right.

I'm sitting in a coffee shop in downtown Chapel Hill, NC just doing some work and surfing the net before going to dinner at Lantern.  And yes, I'm also writing a post about Cracker Barrel.   I'm in North Carolina to visit some relatives and I drove my parents and a niece down here.  On our way down yesterday, we stopped for lunch at a Cracker Barrel just outside of Richmond, VA.  Yeah, I know I took pics but I struggled internally about writing a review about the place.  First of all, its a chain restaurant which I generally don't write about.  Second, its not like Cracker Barrel is at the epitome of good food.  However, it's not like this blog has hard and fast guidelines and if food critics are writing about Olive Garden then Cracker Barrel deserves a little love.

10 comments:

Please feel free to comment! I would love to hear what anyone thinks of any of the content on this blog. But, please always be respectful of others who comment here also. Hope you're enjoying.