Saturday, January 31, 2009

Gourmet Puddin'

Chikalicious Dessert Club
(204 E. 10th St b/t 1st & 2nd Ave)
Everytime we walk by this cute little place on a Saturday night, it's mobbed. Literally elbow to elbow. But at 5pm, it's pretty quiet. So that's when were able to enjoy a steamed vanilla custard (yum), and adult chocolate pudding (rich), and a 'smores cupcake (clever). The puddings were cheap at $3.50 and the cupcake was $2.25, but only because the 'smores flavor is considered a "deluxe" cupcake, the regular ones (like their red velvet or black & white) will only cost you $1.60!
The Verdict: cheap & chic


Saturday, January 24, 2009

Recession dumplings!

Vanessa's Dumplings
(220 E 14th St, b/t 2nd & 3rd Ave, New York, NY)

Hard not to notice the giant sign for $1.29 "Recession Price" dumplings as we walked by Vanessa's Dumplings. We decided on the pork & chive flavor and got 5 huge fried dumplings. Service was a bit rude, but the dumplings were pretty tasty.
The Verdict: Good for a quick snack in the East Village.


Artichoke Pizza

Artichoke Basille's Pizza & Brewery
(328 E 14th Street b/t 1st Ave & 2nd Ave, New York, NY)

Tiny space, big lineup. $4 slices. Artichoke slice was thick, crusty and delicious. Crab slice was a goopy mess but so full of crabby goodness - LOVED IT. Inhaled my pizza crammed up against a garbage can, but I would do it again in a heartbeat. Hubby and I exchanged slices for a second to taste each other's pizza(he had the artichoke, I got the crab) and we couldn't wait to get our original slices back from one another. I guess we don't have exactly the same taste afterall.
The Verdict: Makes me salivate just thinking about it!


Pork bun from heaven...

Momofuku Milk Bar & BakeryAdd Image
(207 Second Ave at 13th street)
Been waiting forever to try David Chang's famous pork bun (2 buns for $9). Thrilled to report that it was as good as all the hype! Pork belly virtually melted in our mouths. On lookers were salivating watching us eat them. I'm Chinese, so I've been eating pork buns my whole life (a.k.a. char siu bao) and these buns were truly delicious. Can't wait to go back and try the pork bun w/egg and the "volcano" (they were sold out when we went last week). Compost cookie was tasty but not as good as the cornflake/marshmallow cookie. My husband didn't like the cookies - he said that all he could taste was butter!
The Verdict: Can't get enough!


Sunday, January 11, 2009

dirtcandy - Vegetarian for Carnivores

(430 E. 9th st b/t Ave. A and First Ave)
Sorry, but we forgot to bring a camera on this one. Check out the restaurant website for some photos of the food. Trudged through messy slush in the East Village on a Saturday night and almost walked by this tiny little closet. I knew the place was small, but I still couldn't believe how small until the 4 of us were squished into a corner booth. The service was excellent, my vegan friend Heather had lots of questions about the menu and they were very accomodating. We were seated right by where the friendly owner/chef was preparing our meals. The jalapeno hush puppies with maple butter were delicious. The portobello mouse appetizer was good, but not as good as I had expected after reading rave reviews about it. Kris absolutely adored his mixed green salad with grilled cheese croutons and grapefruit pops. For my entree, I enjoyed a hearty serving of stone ground grits with a tempura pouched egg on top. The tempura egg was truly divine - it made the dish so luxurious. Kris had the crispy tofu with the green ragout, and my typically unobservant husband was shockingly perceptive and appreciative of all the little details, like how the tofu was plated like a filet of white fish, crispy skin and all, and how each one of his vegetables were perfectly cooked and seasoned in the beurre blanc sauce. For dessert, I had the popcorn pudding, which was yummy and very original - the caramel corn was nice and salty, and tasted great dipped in the pudding. Kris always orders chocolate desserts, so no surprise when he ordered the chocolate cake with the chili chocolate ice cream. The chili wasn't overwhelming, just added a nice warmth to the chocolate. The atmosphere was loud and boisterous, even though we had an early seating, but the noise level became a little overwhelming throughout dinner (I felt like I was shouting to be heard). FYI - even without gas, they still were cranking out meals smoothly, so I guess the food can only get better once they're finally hooked up!

The Verdict: My carnivore husband didn't even miss the meat!

3/21/09 Update: Just found out from my friend Heather that dirtcandy finally has gas!