Posts Tagged With: flatiron

Hanjan – Plan B Gets an A

House of Hao’s

It was one of those wildly premature excitements we experienced when we pulled over at 8 pm Saturday in front of 2 week old Nishi.  No line, on the worst time possible to visit the hottest restaurant on the east coast right now.  “Its gonna be about 10 or so” he says, “Oh, 10 minutes?  thats great” “No, I mean we can sit you at 10!  But its most likely gonna be 10:30”.  They just began a texting service… well whoop dee freakin doo.  Thats about 90 minutes more than I’m willing to wait with a kid.  Strong plan B it is.

Something tells me the great Hooni Kim doesnt mind the plan B tag here considering plan A was the latest David Chang (Momofuku) venture that is taking the city by the Chaloopas.  To give you an idea, the buzz on Nishi started before there was even any sign of a Nishi or anything else really.  No one knew what its gonna be.  The buzz started when Momofuku took on a lease on the space in Chelsea.  Z-List winner Jun-Men Ramen was another plan B contender since Mrs Ziggy still hasnt been (I’ve been 4 times).  But after flirting with Danji about a dozen times, I figured it was time to check out its younger sister, who coincidentally also keeps her goodies in her drawers!Hanjan

Hanjan, albeit newer, is more rustic and casual than Danji.  Communal table in the middle flanked by rows of individual tables with semi comfortable couches (chairs are more comfy), with dim lighting (I think its about time restaurants create blogger/vision impaired spots with ample lighting) contribute to the fun vibe.  As with Danji, the focus is on locally sourced, sustainable seasonal ingredients from local farms.  As I’ve been saying for a while, Farm-to-Table is a funny concept considering there are so many places doing the same thing but not billing themselves as such.  Any good ingredient driven establishment like Danji, Hanjan, and many all over town are essentially Farm-to-Table.  But I have zero issues with those places like The Marshal that call themselves as such to separate from the competitors nearby

Hanjan DumplingsStarted this one with a bang.  Kim’s take on Ddukbokki, Spicy Rice cake w. Pork Fat and fishcakes.  I thought I’ve had all the various shapes and textures of Korean/Chinese rice cakes but I guess I was wrong.  This one was “meatier”, chewier texture smothered with that classic intense Korean hot, sour, sweet chili sauce.  Very good and Mrs Z, and youngest favorite of the night, though I still prefer the Gnocchi like porkiness of Ssam Bar which is in a league of its own (yet another disagreement with these guys).  Pork and shrimp fried dumplings tasted much better than they looked.  Spicy Chicken Thigh Skewers were good if not slightly overcooked (slightly).  Hanjan gets its chicken from a top Brooklyn purveyor, freshly killed over the last 24 hours, so never frozen.

BBQ Wagyu Short Rib comes as part of a Ssam set of goodies was a high quality, nicely marbled piece of meat.  Good, but not particularly as memorable as the next dish.  Long time EWZ historians know how fond I am of a nicely constructed fried rice dish, and this was one of the best I’ve had in NYC.  Kimchi & Beef Brisket Fried Rice with a fried egg delivered big time flavors with nice socarrat action. The key here was little crunchy cubes of Kimchi pickled Daikon (Korean radish) that tied all the flavors together.

Hanjan
36 W 26th St
$$$
Reccommended Dishes: Rice Cakes, Dumplings, Short Rib, Fried Rice

Hanjan Rice Cakes Hanjan Skewers

 

 

 

 

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Categories: Gramercy, Flatiron, New York City | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

5 Reasons to Visit Flatiron District this Month

MSP2IMG_1640The Flatiron district is one of my favorite areas in NYC.  It is the first area I think about when I need to kill some time.  You got great architecture, artsy park, some of the best dining in NYC like Maialino and ABC Kitchen, and a stone throw away from Union Square and the village, Curry Hill, Koreatown and other great hoods.  If all that is not enough here are 5 reasons to head to Flatiron today

1.  New art at Madison Square Park.  Orly Genger’s Red, Yellow, and Blue.  3 structures of layers of hand painted ropes  in 3 areas of the park.  I’ve seen a lot of art over the years at the park and this is one of the most stunning

http://www.madisonsquarepark.org/art

2.  Madison Square Eats.  They are back.  New York’s finest in the food business dishing out some super tasty snacks.  We are talking about Roberta’s Pizza (try the Bee Sting pizza), momofuku milk bar, Red Hook Lobster Pound, Arancini Bros., Bar Suzette, Hong Kong Street Cart and much much more (note that was 2 muches).Madison Square Eats

Avoid midweek during lunch however unless you don’t mind painful lines.  More painful than standing in a full bus on a Friday night for 90 minutes as I did the other day.  It was getting somewhat frustrating at some point but then luckily we all got that loud announcement again.  “City bus operators are protected by state law. assaulting a bus operator is a felony!” Well thank goodness.  And what perfect timing as I was just getting riled up.  I mean is it really necessary to wake an entire bus of tired New Yorkers after work with this announcement.  I can just imagine the meetings they had about what announcements they should do with their brand spanking new buses with fancy announcement systems.  ” Hey lets remind them that assaulting a driver is a felony in case, you know, they are plotting something”,  “Oh and lets also remind them what the fare is in case they forgot”  We just paid it!!

Eataly3.  Eataly.  Still there and not going anywhere by the look of the crowds.  I’ve been there 3 more times in the last 4 weeks alone and had more delicious Italian goodness like this Asparagus and egg dish in Le Verdure.

4.  ABC Cocina.  Jean-Georges Vongerichten and Dan Kluger’s much hyped Spanish tapa extension to the ultra popular farm to table ABC Kitchen.

5.  Do you really need a 5th reason?  Seriously why are you still reading?  I gave you 4 perfectly fine reasons above including great food, flowers and painted ropes next to flowers.  What else do you want?  You know what, I had a great 5th reason but I’m choosing not to share it at this time.  Instead I leave you with more pictures of painted rope with flowers, food, and for my Australian readers a squirrel…IMG_1628 IMG_1636 IMG_1637 IMG_1641 IMG_1648 IMG_1651 IMG_1658 IMG_1660 IMG_1663

Categories: Gramercy, Flatiron, New York City | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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