Posts Tagged With: Gazala’s Place

A Tour Around the World in HK

Meske

Meske

This month’s theme on W42st is travel.  This is just a small sample of countries you can visit while in Hell’s Kitchen, which you can find in the magazine mini zine.  Bring your passports.

Nano (Ecuador).  Abel and co. redefining ‘hole in the wall’ while dishing out all sorts of hearty traditional Ecuadorian specialties.  Try the homey Caldo de Bola soup

Meske (Ethiopia).  Our “Little Ethiopia” is very little, with only two restaurants right next to each other.  Here you get dirty and use the spongy Injera bread to scoop up all the goodies on it

Pam Real Thai (Thailand) –  Tucked just a bit outside of Thai mecca 9th is perhaps the best of them all (along with Pure Thai).  The Oxtail soup can cure summertime sadness.

Gazala’s (Israel Druze) – The only Druze dining in NYC.  I cant get enough of the Hummus here because the guests I bring never leave me much

City Sandwich (Portugal) – These are Portuguese inspired sandwiches served with a smile.  The best Pastel de Nata (egg tarts) in town, called here Pastel de Crema

Gazala's Moshakal

Gazala’s

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Categories: Midtown West, New York City | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

Flavor of the Month – Gazala’s Place

Gazala's HummusI will have more about Sicily soon, but meanwhile…

This is a new monthly feature on EWZ that simply features a NYC establishment that I like right now.  Not a full blown post as I will spare you the unnecessary details and jokes and simply say GO, and why.  And yes, I’m changing the meaning of the conventional usage of “Flavor of the Month” and making it my own

There aren’t that many places more deserving to kick this thing off than Gazala’s.  I’ve been going to Gazala’s in Hell’s Kitchen for many years, and only met Gazala a handful of times.  Thats partly because for a while Gazala was cooking at the bigger Gazala near the Natural History Museum until she was forced to close it.  As a result she spends more time in Hell’s Kitchen these days, especially during lunch time making dinner preparations.  Middle Eastern is the proper way of categorizing Gazala’s, but its more than that

At the moment Gazala is in Israel, visiting her family at the Druze village of Daliat el-Carmel, in the north near Haifa.  The village where years ago as a young girl she had to make a decision that would shape the rest of her life.  The decision to whether follow the religious path or not, as every Druze boy and girl requires to decide.  Sacrifices surround each decision, and luckily for us New Yorkers she chose the non-religious path (as most do).  This essentially allowed her to travel, and bring us a taste of that druze culture.  This may be the only Druze restaurant in the country

Gazala’s Place is not a particularly sexy place.  For that go to Room Service across the street where you can swing by their many chandeliers.  But if you want some of the best and freshest Hummus in NYC, a Bourekas (like Bourek, flaky pastry stuffed with cheese and other goodies) popular with food tours, and fantastic falafel the size of a small monkey head, come to Gazala’s Place.  Her $10 lunch specials alone like the Kafta kebab with outragously delicious chicken, hummus, salad, rice, and Baba ghanoush is the best deal in Hell’s Kitchen.  Like the gift that keeps on givingGazala's Gazala's Bourekas Gazala's Meat Cigars Gazala'a Place Bourekas Gazala's Osh Al-Saria

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Best Dishes in Hell – Round One

Little Chef - Egg BowlDear readers, it is with extreme pleasure and slight gastro discomfort that I welcome you to the first installment of Best Dishes in Hell, where we feature 5 dishes to target in this little foodie heaven I like to call Hell’s Kitchen.  Each of these bites is guaranteed to put a smile on your face and put all your troubles behind.  Or not!

Bourekas at Gazala’s Place – Bourekas, or Bourek is something I ate often as a child, but not really by choice.  I hated it!  So if I list a Bourekas in this space, it can only mean that this is not your ordinary Bourekas.  Your choices are normally Feta with spinach or Feta with sun-dried tomatoes.  I prefer the latter.  One bite of that beast to feel that explosive, rich, flaky goodness and you’ll understand why.  And did I mention that it comes with a side of my favorite Hummus in the city.

Gazala'a Place BourekasEgg Bowl at Little Chef – The winter version below, while the regular version is pictured on top.  Health food that I would gladly go out of my way for, but luckily I dont need to as I work 12.3 minutes from Gotham West Market (I timed it).  The current version features porky cranberry beans, salsa rojas (roasted red salsa), and just about the sickest breadcrumbs on the planet.  Same breadcrumbs featured in the non-wintery bowl which includes fresh greens and assorted roasted veggies like broccoli and potatoes.  Glorious stuff my friends

Little Chef Egg Bowl WinterSausage Pizza at Capizzi – Avid readers of EWZ already know that there’s no reason to cross bridges and tunnels for pizza.  However, very few places in the city (Manhattan) have that homey pizza parlor feel that is very common in Brooklyn and Staten Island.  Capizzi tucked away in “Downtown Hell’s Kitchen” got it and more.  This pie is a sausage fest of deep flavors made from fresh ingredients cooked in a wood fired oven.  Not quite NY style pizza, and not quite Naples style, but very NYC

CapizziAkamaru Modern at Ippudo – A recent article by the NYT reaffirms the belief that Hell’s Kitchen is a ramen force to be reckon with.  And in the middle of this ramen revolution is this super popular Ippudo branch.  Start with their terrific smooth pork buns and move on to the Akamaru, a complex porky broth and just about as addictive as Ramen gets in NYC

Ippudo - AkamaruCanotto at Sullivan Street Bakery – Love at first bite.  Sometimes its slightly off, but for the most part its pastry perfection.  Brioche filled with mascarpone, berries, topped with crumbs and some salt.  What I love about this is that every bite is different.  On one bite you taste chewy, cheesy, salty, next is crunchy, fruity, and so on

Sullivan St Canotto Sullivan St - Canotto

Categories: Midtown West, New York City | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

My Top 10 bites of 2012 in NYC

Some of the best eating we’ve done in 2012 was outside of NYC.  Mainly in New Orleans, Israel, and Turks and Caicos.  But there was plenty of eating in our back yard…

Marea – Astice.   Nova Scotia lobster + creamy Burrata, + Eggplant al funghetto + beautiful pesto drops = pure ecstasy in every bite.  I remember the feeling while eating it.  The Spaghetti with crab and fusilli not too shabby either.  Photo below courtesy of bionicgrrrl at BionicbitesMarea - Astice

Zabb Elee – Pad Ped Moo Krob.   Crispy fried and refried pork, green peppercorn, ginger, Thai eggplant and spicy curry.  A lot of heat and a lot flavor
Aldea – Shrimp Alhinho – loved the dish, not the meal.  Large succulent shrimp with a nice complex sauce.  Well done!
Alta – bacon wrapped dates.  Skip the other half of the dish (the olives) and get more of these babies.  Bacon never tasted that good.
Scarpetta – Rabbit Agnolotti – Perfectly cooked rabbit in those pillowy delicate Agnolotti bursting with flavor (silence of the lambs sound)

Roberta’s – Bee sting pizza.  Great tasting pie.  Spicy Sopressata (spicier than other Sopressata I’ve had) and the added honey contributed to interesting contrasting flavors.  Liked it more than Paulie Gee’s similar Delboy.  Or maybe it was the waitressesRoberta's Bee Sting Pizza
Sanrasa – Lamprie.  This Dutch influenced Sri Lankan classic is a piece of art.  Rice, meat, curry, caramelized onions, cashews, all baked wrapped in banana leaf.  What a great dish
Gazala’s Place – Hummus with lamb and pine nuts.  Nuttiest, creamiest, freshest Hummus I’ve had in NYC.Hummus with Lamb and Pine Nuts

Minetta Tavern – Black Label burger.  Best burger we ever had.  50% of it is prime 48 day aged rib eye.

Danji – Chicken wings.  This gourmet Korean tapas joint serves some mean chicken wings.  Cant wait to have them again.Danji

Categories: New York City | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Gazala’s Place – Hummus and the City

Hummus with Lamb and Pine NutsEver since we came back from our 2 week stint in Israel, I’ve been on the hunt for good hummus like Mike Tyson seeking fine Orecchiette (baby ear shape pasta).  I’ve had good Hummus at Mimi’s and Zion Deli in Brooklyn, Hummus Kitchen in Hells Kitchen, and a fine Hummus with Srug at Ta’im among other spots.   But as soon as I tasted the Hummus with lamb and pine nuts at Gazala’s Place I was transported.  The creamiest, smoothest, nuttiest, freshest I’ve had so far.

Foul MassaryGazala’s Place is the creation of Gazala Halabi who brings her Druze recipes from Daliyat El-Carmel, a Druze village perched on Mt. Carmel.  While in Israel we visited the Druze village next door, Usafia and had a memorable Druze hospitality lunch there while learning about their way of life.

Gazala also dishes out large, herby, delicious falafel balls, nice fresh salads, and various tasty hummus and Hummus-like specialties like the pictured Foul Massary, fava beans with tomatoes.  Their Bourekas of the day which I havent tried yet also looks terrific.

I cant guarantee that this is the best Hummus in town but I can guarantee without a doubt that this is the best Druze with Russian waitresses in Hells Kitchen.  Gazala opened another location on Columbus and shows her Russian fetish there as well.  Check it out readers.  Both of you!

Falafel

Categories: Midtown West, New York City | Tags: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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