Posts Tagged With: The Cannibal

Hell’s Kitchen on St Patty’s Day – Best Bars for Grub

Categories: Midtown West, New York City | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Best Wings in NYC

Kolkovna Olympia wings

Updated 1/24/17

Ok, so we are all adults here.  We all know perfectly well that these are NOT the best wings in the city.  In the city that never sleeps, and never runs out of wings, there are hundreds of wings out there, not counting the simple bar wings you can find in every corner.  But I’m just one Ziggy, with different taste sensitivities than many readers, and I cant taste them all.  “Decent wings” or “favorite wings” doesnt sound as convincing, or Google friendly.  With that said, there’s only one certainty:  The competition is rather fierce.  And any new joint offering wings has to be creative, and deliver something more than palatable.

Since the average wings researcher has shorter attention than other researchers (eg Ramen), I’m only listing my favorite five, with more solid options at the end

Ma Peche – Jerk Wings. (Upate 9/19/16:  Havent seen them on the menu in a while due to rotating chefs.  Shame, shame, shame!).  If I have to pick one, this is probably it.  The love affair started with the wings being part of the cart service.  Whenever I would bring guests here, my attention span would drop to wings researcher levels until I’d finally spot the cart of dreams carrying them.  These days the wings are part of the menu and they are better than ever.  An explosion of complex jerky, zesty, habanero, brown sugary flavors fill your palate and stay for a few good minutes, or days sometimes if you don’t rush to wash those handsMa Peche wings

Distilled – Distilled Wings.  A former Momofuku alumni has been quietly dishing out great wings in Tribeca.  Distilled may be better known for their mixologist team as of late, but those wings have been on the menu since day one.  These are grade A quality hefty wings.  They are double fried to crispy perfection, and coated with a thick and messy layer of Gochujang (that fermented Korean sauce you put on your Bibimbap).  And they serve it with their own version of not too funky blue cheese dressing to cool things down.  Truly excellent wings.Distilled wings

Danji – Spicy ‘k.f.c.’ Korean Fire Chicken Wings.   Love at first sweat, around four years ago.  I like to bring visitors here on occasion, though I don’t love when they witness me lick my own fingers which may be considered rude.  What’s more rude me thinks is wiping off that awesomeness with wet napkins.  Heat level has been steady all these years, so make sure to have the fantastic tofu before altering your palate.  This is pure delicious heat, as opposed to senseless.Danji - Wings

Biang! – Chicken Wings Skewers. This dish prompted me to bump up this post.  In fact it was as soon as I finished my wing, and right before trying to convince my daughters that its way too spicy and there’s more food coming.  It didnt work, as they gobbled those things in full force.  One can easily overlook them because Biang! is known for just about everything else but wings, but dont make the mistake.  Like Pok Pok below these are full high quality wings, and oh so nicely seasoned to absolute perfection.  And while you at it, also try the Cauliflower skewers.  Yes, not a typo.  Cauliflower!

biang-wings

The Cannibal (Gotham West Market) – Chili and Garlic Wings.  These wings dont carry the same spice punch as the others.  They are milder, but far from lacking in flavor.  The wings are marinated, slow roasted, and breaded before cooked in the Cannibal’s high powered oven.  Kitchen space is limited in Gotham West so they need to be creative.  The zesty aioli and the little oniony salad served on top compliment nicely.  And the skin and the juicy meat are happily married.  And dont forget about the sick Pig’s Head Cuban.  This is quickly becoming my favorite Gotham West menuCanibbal - wings

Jun-Men Ramen – Chicken Wings.  A must order for me on each visit since discovery.  4 plain looking wings, but far from plain tasting.  They are double fried to give them a nice crisp, but retain plenty of juice and strong peppery notes from the secret Jun-Men sauce.  Even without the wings this is one Chelsea favorite.

jun-men-wings

Pok Pok – Ike’s Vietnamese Fish Sauce Wings.  Unlike the other wings here, wing historians out there are probably already well too familiar with this legendary pick.  Articles, cookbooks, essays, children books (Goodnight Pok Pok Ike’s Vietnamese Fish Sauce Wings!) written about these wings.  Somewhat inaccessible to most people so you wont find any tourists or Staten Islanders here normally.  You can have the wings at the Whisky Soda Lounge next door while you wait for your table.   The wings are huge, spicy, garlicky, on the dry side, but flavor packed.  Put this one on your bucket list.  Before the Great Wall of China, after Story Time with Bill Cosby.Pok Pok Wings

Pondicheri – Masala Wings.  These wings are as complex as the name.  Is it Masala wings? Is it Madras?  Doesnt matter, its all good.  The wings are slow baked, liberally coated with Garam Masala, and Mango Powder seasoning and served with two chutneys including chili and tamarind.  They are aromatic and delicious, with the proper texture in and out.  And while you at it, try any of the Thalis for breakfast or lunch, followed by anything from the unique bakery like the ice cream sandwich

pondicheri-masala-wings

Bar Goto – Miso Wings.  Black Sesame, Scallions, House Spicy Miso Sauce.  These are some of the best bar wings you will find in NYC.  But in this semi-classy tiny Japanese cocktail joint, they will test your high-toned manners.  You may find yourself sitting at the bar, talking politics with the bartender, while in desperate need of extra napkins to wipe the Miso glaze around your lips and sponge your sweaty forehead (these are hot!).  And while the bartender exclaims his views on Trump, all you can think about is “Is it Miso, or is it Buffalo”.  And once you think you got your classiness under control, you cant help but lick your fingers.  All of them.  Slowly.

goto-wings

Han Dynasty – Dry Pepper Chicken Wings.  For a white, spicy lover like myself, these are what the Mission Chinese Food wings should taste like.  They are marinated in sherry, cayenne, garlic, white pepper, and ginger. And stir-fried with a hefty dose of chili paste, chili peppers, garlic and scallions.  They are more subdued than Mission’s, but not without its share of nice pleasant heat.  Some of the pepper action bunched together into something reminiscent of a Yemeni S’chug (hot pepper spread).  The skin is as crispy and delicious as it comes, which made me wish for more flesh to balance.  Wonderful stuff!

han-dynasty-wings

FOB – Spicy Chicken Langkawas.  This one is all about the sauce.  When the waiter takes the plate before you are totally done with that sauce, you stare at him like he’s a bully trying to take your food.  The wings are grilled, so not so much of a skin crunch.  But the flavor is there thanks to the wonderful, addictive thick salsa of chilies, lime, and coconut milk.  I’m starting to think that finger-licking-good was invented in the Phillipines, with all that Adobo, and various sauces they make.  The wings are one of many inspiring goodies coming out of this homey Filipino kitchen in Brooklyn

fob-chicken-wings

Other Notables:  Mighty Quinn’s, Mission Cantina, Bonchon, Mission Chinese Food (not a fan personally but it has a huge following), International Wings Factory

Categories: Brooklyn, Midtown West, New York City, TriBeCa | Tags: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Gotham West Market Top Eats

Gotham West Market - Ivan Ramen

March 13th, 2016 Update:  While Gotham West is still very much part of the rotation (about twice a month) its becoming increasingly difficult to recommend individual eats there.  Its constantly evolving, and the menus constantly change.  Court Street Grocers is long gone, and in its place is Uma, Oprah, Uma (I couldnt resist) Temakeria from Chris Jaeckle of the great all’onda in the village.  Uma specializes in sushi burritos, design your own Chirashis and Temakis sushi cones.  Nothing outrageously delicious, but a refreshing healthy addition.  Give it a try.

Rumor has it Akhtar Nawab is the next in line as the Most Interesting Man in The World (they retired the current dude).  Nawab keeps getting featured as one of the sexiest chefs in America, and slowly taking over the market with Choza and Indie Fresh.  My lunch partner Lou of Smum County eats only Choza when we are there, while Indie Fresh keep growing on me with their inventive soups, salads, and healthy sandwiches.  Akhtar Nawab – When opportunity knocks and he’s not home, opportunity waits!

Brent Herrig © 2013

SeriousEats

While the great Whitefish Donburi is no more at Ivan Ramen (wasnt selling well – Idiots!), they replaced it with Breakfast Ramen (below) – cheesy dashi, egg, ham, ramen noodles and more – quite possibly the best eat at the market at the moment.  Also, something happened to the great Genuine chicken sandwich.  Not the same anymore judging from the darker, blander piece I got a few weeks ago, and a reader comment below.  The burgers are still good.  While at the Cannibal the most interesting thing I ate lately is a Butchers Salad – spinach, kale, salami. tomato, squash and light parm dressins

Ivan Ramen Breakfast Ramen

July 31st, 2015 Update:  Little Chef is long gone and I miss it dearly.  Choza (Mexican) took it’s place, and although my co-workers like it, I rather pay a visit to the many other Mexicans in the area like Tehuitzingo and the just reopened Parada 47 (former HK survival guide member Guelaguetza).  The bigger addition to the market is Ample Hills, one of the cities premier ice cream maker.  Their Salted Crack Caramel is the closest I will ever get to crack.  Add it to the list of musts here.  The chicken sandwich at Genuine is still crack like (I’m told), and the whitefish Doburi is now Salmon Donbui.  Although I miss the whitefish smokiness, this is still the strongest dish at Ivan’s.  Ivan also introduced an incredibly unique morning menu which I’m yet to try.  Canibal menu continues to impress and its quickly becoming one of my Hell’s Kitchen faves.  Try the wings

Original post:

6 Vendors and a Funeral

“In a world… where soups and salads reign lunch supreme.. and halal carts are routine… one man will rise… and change lunch!”  “A story about love, betrayal, and Ramen”  “The rise and fall of a food blogger, battling food addiction” (who finally saw his demise when a little food court consisting mostly of 6 food vendors opened on the far west side, right near the rehab clinic).  In theaters near you.

What I’m trying to say is that I’ve been to Gotham West Market a lot, about once, sometimes twice a week since it opened about 4 months ago.  I brought family, friends, enemies, co-workers and even my rabbi to the market.  As I said before, Gotham West is the most thrilling thing to happen to Hell’s Kitchen since Ezra the Falafel Nazi cracked a smile 4 years ago.

But lets get down to business.  There are actually more than 6 vendors at Gotham West.  There’s also a kitchen supply store, a Coffee shop, and you guessed it, a bicycle shop.  But for the purpose of this post I will focus on the 6 hand picked, artisanal vendors that can… well.. pretty much kill you.

Gotham West Market 2

Buttermilk Battered Chicken Sandwich at Genuine Roadside – One bite of this Chicken Sandwich and you’ll understand why its in this space.  While its not gonna be on Man vs. Food any time soon for its size, this is a very satisfying sandwich, and combined with the Shake Shack-upgrade fries, very filling.  The fried Chicken as everything else here, is made to order and the result is one heck of a juicy and flavorful sandwich.  The mayo, slaw with apples – addition by addition.   And while the tourists wait in line for the Shake Shack revelation, only to find out they need to fight another tourist for standing room eating, have a burger here that is just as good if not better, in a comfortable environment.  Owner Avroko, the firm who designed Gotham West have done a great job with Genuine Roadside, the only original vendor in the marketGenuine Roadside- Chicken Sandwich

Smoked Whitefish Donburi at Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop – Not exactly a shocker here after including the Donburi in the best of 2013 list.  Ok, confession time, Out of 8 or so visits I believe I tried everything on the menu and more, except for one little thing… the Ramen.  Thats more of a testament to the rest of the dishes here, and to a ramen filled neighborhood.  The whitefish Donburi was love at first smell with its smokiness, sweet soy dashi, cucumber,  scallion, over this delicious white rice.  Perfection in a bowl.  And a reminder that Jewish food can mesh with any cuisine.  Well, except for Gefilte Fish.. FEH!

Not a fan of whitefish?  Try the pork Donburi, or any of the Mazemens (slightly partial to the garlic), or well… the Ramen.  Let me know how it isIvan Ramen Whitefish Donburi

Pig’s Head Cuban Sandwich at The Cannibal – This may very well be the Cuban to beat in NYC.  Delicious super tender slow roasted funky pork, Vermont Ham, semi melted cheese and pickles, served warm with perfectly crispy bread.  Not to be confused with another neighborhood fave, Casellula’s fine Pig’s Ass Sandwich.  One tastes like head, while the other tastes like ass.  And while you at it, try the “Shrimp Roll” as well at the Cannibal.  Like the hotdog and lobster roll had a baby.  A beautiful healthy, delicious baby, called Shmuel, after uncle Shmuel.  Even though he was a big drunk, he would always send moneyThe Cannibal - Pig's Head

Egg Bowl at Little Chef – I’m writing this one with great difficulties after taking a glance at the pictures of this dish.  My stomach is suddenly talking to me in Armenian.  As with her popular Williamsburg sandwich shop Saltie, freshness is key with Caroline Fidanza.  In the fall the egg bowl featured fresh greens, assorted roasted veggies like broccoli and potatoes and just about the tastiest bread crumbs you will ever have.  The same breadcrumbs are featured in the winter version along with porky cranberry beans, salsa rojas (roasted red salsa).  And its another proof that everything looks and tastes that much better with a fried eggLittle Chef Egg Bowl Winter Little Chef - Egg Bowl

Bacon Wrapped Dates at El Colmado – Explosive come to mind.  This is a common Spanish tapas dish that is often uneventful for us but not here.  Its larger than usual and stuffed better with Almond and Valdeon cheese.  A classic dish from the classic team of Seamus Mullen and Gil Avital of West Village hotspot Tertullia.  Welcome to the neighborhood guys.  The dates are pictures here on the rightEl Colmado - Eel Croquettes, Date

Pork Shoulder at Court Street Grocers – Pork Shoulder, Mayo, Provolone, Broccoli Rabe, Red Peppers for much needed acidity, Pecorino Romano, on a Hero Roll.  Need I say more?  Simply Outstanding.  And if you ever in the mood for an Italian, the Mortadella, Salami, Hot Coppa, Swiss, Mozzarella, Pecorino Romano, Arugula, Red Onion, Mayo, “CSG” Hoagie Spread, Red Wine Vinaigrette, on Hero Roll as good as Italian gets in NYCCourt Street Grocers - Pork Shoulder

Gotham West Market - Ivan

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

Gotham West Market Opens. Ziggy Gains 3.7 lb

Gotham West Market

I haven’t seen so much excitement since my wife brought home not one but two extra large Zappos boxes.  The area I like to call Hell’s Kitchen (because that’s what its called) has given birth to Octuplets yesterday.  For the German tourists reading this blog (For some reason this blog is popular with German tourists – ich danke ihnen!) Octuplets means 8 babies.  8 beautiful, healthy, delicious babies.  We normally get excited when one place opens in Hell’s Kitchen, so 8 at the same time is like… 8 as much excitement.  Essentially what I’m trying to say is that this is the most thrilling thing to happen to Hell’s Kitchen since Ezra from Azuri Cafe cracked a smile (it happened in January 20th, 2007.  I witnessed it.  Though rumors have it that it was just gas)

So far I’ve been to Gotham West twice.  On the day they opened (yesterday), and on the second day (the day after yesterday!).   Here are the vendors starting with the two I ate so far…

Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop – from Ivan Orkin, a Jew from Brooklyn making Ramen in Japan.  While everyone anticipates his LES Ramen joint to open, this one got snuck in first.  I came for Ramen, but got the Smoked Whitefish Donbury rice bowl instead.  Terrific stuff!  Hefty chunks of white fish with Salmon roe, cucumber and scallion.  All on top of warm rice with a touch of sweet soy.  I want to try everything on this menu

Ivam Ramen - Smoed whitefish

El Colmado – Had lunch here today with the Hummus Whisperer.  Classic Spanish Tapas from Seamus Mullen and the rest of Tertullia’s team.  Gil Avital, one of Tertullia’s partners is running the show.  Lovely Smoked Eel Croquettes.  Deviled eggs with smoked Bacalao were more satisfying.  Dates stuffed with Almond and Valdeon cheese were explosive.  This is a classic tapas dish we’ve had many times over the years, and this is as good as it gets.  Gambas al Ajillo were small and simple.  Not the best we’ve had.  Octopus on the Plancha was more like it, tender and nicely charred.  Got  a couple on the house.. Marcona Almonds fried in olive oil. Hmmm, I prefer my raw Marcona from Costco.  Its like crack in my house.  Smoked Idiazabal cheese marinated with olive oil and rosemary in a sardine can was fine.  Very nice lunch overall.  Looking forward to trying the rest of the menu

El Colmado -Deviled Eggs El Colmado - Eel Croquettes, Date El Colmado - Octopud El Colmado - GambasEl Colmado - Cheese

The Cannibal – From the people that brought you Resto and the The Cannibal in Gramercy serving charcuterie, small bites, and various meat specialties like pork neck kimchi rillettes.  Seriously who doesnt love a good pork neck kimchi rillette

Genuine Roadside – Essentially classic American food with a twist.  Fish tacos, beef, pork, chicken sandwiches and a whole lot of burger action.  Not surprisingly the biggest line so far.  Well this is after all, America!

Gotham West Market HKLittle Chef – From  Caroline Fidanza off Brooklyn’s Saltie.  5-10 creative farm to table dishes like the Ship’s Biscuit – Focaccia, soft scrambled egg, ricotta, or the Clean Slate – hummus, quinoa, pickled vegetables, yogurt sauce on naan bread, or try the Cock a Leekie – chicken, leek and prune soup.  Although you may have some explaining to do when your spouse asks you what you had for lunch today if your answer is a “Cock a Leekie”

Court Street Grocers – Smack in the middle of all the action is this other Brooklyn import making gourmet sandwiches.   Such as the Confit of Pork Shoulder, Mayo, Provolone, Broccoli Rabe, Red Peppers, Pecorino Romano, on a Hero Roll, or how about a Braised Beef Shank, Gorgonzola Dolce, Caramelized Onion, Red Peppers, Arugula, Red Wine Vinaigrette, on a Potato Roll.  POTATO ROLL!!

Blue Bottle Coffee – Twelfth location for this popular cafe.  The New Orleans Ice Coffee seems to be popular among other things

You also got the The Brooklyn Kitchen for all your Kitchen needs.  Christmas is coming and I need a dutch oven, knife set, and a personal chef.  Hint hint!  You can even order your turkey here, and attend various cooking classes such as making pizzas with Roberta’s.  And soon you will have a Velo Bike Shop for all your Citibike bike needs.  Stay Hungry Bitches!

Gotham West Market
600 11th Ave, New York, NY

Gotham West Market 3 Gotham West Market NYC Gotham West Market - Ivan Ramen Gotham West Market 2 El Colmado Gotham West Market - Ivan

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

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.