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Sep 21, 2007 03:16 PM

50 Best Dishes in New York

So I've just begun a video project that will attempt to pick out the 50 best dishes in New York City. As you can imagine, it's an impossible feat-5,000 Best Dishes would be a little easier. I've only been in the city for a few months now and the contributors to these threads seem to have great perspective on the food here, whether it's from per se or はぎ さき Bar. Can you help me compile a (short) list of the foods that everyone in New York knows about but few from outside the city( aka me) have discovered? I'm looking across the whole price spectrum, but I'm most interested in the harder to come by amazing yet cheap food. Thanks everyone

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  1. St. Alps Tea House
    Some of the BEST Dumplings.. and by far the best pearl drinks I have had in a long time. My little sister is a NYC girl.. I am a cali girl. This is one place frequent EVERYTIME I am there. Best part.. dumplings are about $3.00 a plate.

    Another place is a Yakitori place in St. Marks Sq. I am sorry that I dont know the name. I will try to find it. Again, great food.. very inexpensive.

    For more expensive food.. I really love Craft. I know, probably a little cliche, but very yummy. I would say the best Foie Gras in the city. For sure the best Sweetbreads.

    Dessert.. my pick is ANYTHING at Max Brennar's.


    6 Replies
    1. re: coconutgoddess

      Ones I did not see on the list yet...

      Wyagu Beef - Per Se (Yes it cost 10 times more than PL but is better)
      Tripe Marinara - Babbo
      Square Slice - DiFara (do outer bouroughs count?)
      Eggs Nova & Onions (soft scrambled with 2 plain untoasted bagels) -Barney Greengrass
      Rice flavored gelatto - Il Lab
      Bagel cream cheese & lox - Russ & daughters
      Pain Chocolat & Eclairs - Patisserie Claude
      Corn on the Cob - Cafe Habana

      1. re: tpigeon

        similiar idea but different execution: Slowly Poached egg, Jamón serrano, chorizo, Smoked Cheese and Rice Cracker Crusted Asparagus from Degustation and the onsen tamago soup at Sakagura (poached egg, sea urchin roe, salmon roe in dashi broth) - I think of both dishes and drool.

        Prune's burger, as well as their sweetbreads
        spicy lobster at Morimoto
        Balthazar's french fries
        Sripraphai roast duck salad, whole red snapper

        1. re: erikka

          oops, not sure why my reply ended up on your post, sorry!

          1. re: erikka

            On my last visit to NY a few weeks ago, I had the chance to taste the onsen tamago at Sakagura. It was SOOOO delicious!

          2. re: tpigeon

            I 2nd the Barney Greengrass recommendation but would also add the nova and whitefish salad platter w/ untoasted bagels. As a DC Hound with nothing like that around here I dream about it.

            I would also have to add the chopped liver from 2nd Avenue Bakery.

            Btw this seems like a very cool project. Just out of curiosity what format is it going to take and will it be online, open to the public in a museum, a documentry etc? I would be very interested in seeing the end result. Thanks

            1. re: Elyssa

              I third the Barney Greengrass recommendation - their Sable and Whitefish salad is a total hit with my family every Christmas morning. I also love the whitefish salad at Russ and Daughters which I think has some baked salmon mixed in with it. Delicious!

        2. I just went to WD 50 last night, so the beef tongue from the tasting menu is fresh on my mind. (The menu describes it as "beef tongue, fried mayo, tomato molasses".) Fantastic. And pretty.

          For the cheap, but harder to come by food, the first thing that comes to mind is the halal cart on 53rd near 6th. It's inexpensive and tasty (though I don't know if it's really the best halal cart in midtown like everyone says)--and hard to come by b/c you have to have a surfeit of time on your hands to stand in line so long.

          There might be a bit of internal tension to your project insofar as the best dishes in NYC may not be the same thing as what "everyone in New York" knows about. At least that is one of the conceits of this board. =) A lot of Hounds like to eat where no Hound has eaten before.

          1 Reply
          1. re: cimui

            Oh man I TOTALLY second the cart at 53rd and 6th (aka "chicken and rice" or "platters"). Get extra white sauce, no salad, and a mix of chicken and gyro meat (the beef is a new addition that I have yet to try). Also, make sure you get the food from the cart that sets up after 7pm...I think there may be another cart there earlier in the day - imposter! This cart has quite a following:

            Another favorite, though not quite as high up on my list, is Kati Roll. Sort of an Indian Burrito, I suppose - spiced meat or potato (or both!), grilled onions, and chutney rolled up inside a paratha (a flaky Indian flatbread, sort of a cross between a croissant and a tortilla). My favorite is the Chicken Tikka variety.


          2. FYI, it's not "はぎ さき Bar" but "居酒屋 萩". Also "さき" transliterates as "saki", rather than "sake" "さけ" which would anyway, mean salmon. It's always written as "酒". Anywho, you're referring to "Sake Bar Hagi" on 49th st., where I've never encountered anything particularly memorable, though I'm definitely a fan.

            My few Japanese dishes on such a best dish list might be the shio tama (salt egg) from Ramen Setagaya , the lamb chops at Yakitori Totto, and the mirugai from Sushi Yasuda.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Silverjay

              Or sometimes Hagi is written はぎっ (not sure if it's a play on words) like on the back of the t-shirts worn by the servers.

            2. Some recent and some long-running favorites:

              Beef marrow with oxtail marmalade at Blue Ribbon
              Banh mi sandwich at Bahn Mi So 1, Saigon, Momofuku Ssam Bar
              Truffled egg toast and eggplant lasagnette at 'inoteca
              Fried pork dumplings at New Green Bo
              Salt baked crabs/squid/shrimp at NY Noodletown
              Bagel with whitefish salad and tomato at Russ & Daughters
              Pastrami sandwich at Katz's
              Carne asada burrito from the Calexico cart
              Lobster mac n' cheese at Nolita House
              Tampiquena at Mercadito
              Skate at Ed's Lobster Bar
              Cheeseburgers at Wolfgang's and Walker's
              Shrimp tacos at Cafe el Portal
              Seafood pasta at Bianca
              Cuban sandwich at El Castillo de Jagua
              The little empanadas at Industria Argentina
              Pho at Cong Ly
              Huevos Rancheros at Cafe Habana
              Radiator pasta with lamb meatballs at Jacques
              Soup and challah at B&H Dairy

              3 Replies
              1. re: big o

                Add my vote for the truffled egg toast.

                More for my short-list:

                Veggie congee from Congee Village
                Taro bun or veggie bing from Roll & Dough (now closed, I think)
                Grilled veggie arepa from Caracas Arepa Bar
                Crispy soul chicken sandwich from Red Bamboo
                Sabich from Taim
                Chocolate-cheese muffin from Samad Gourmet
                Mushroom pierogi from Ukrainian National Home
                (to be continued)

                1. re: piccola

                  Yup, Roll & Dough is gone now. Alas!

                2. re: big o

                  If you are going to put cafe habana on the list you can't forget the corn on the cob :).

                3. Bratwurst on a roll with the works, Hallo Berlin Cart in Midtown
                  Crispy Pork or Drunken Noodles with Beef, Sripraphai (Woodside, Queens)
                  Pastrami on rye, Katz's
                  Potato & cheese pierogi, Veselka
                  Cannoli or Cassata, Villabate Pasticceria (Bensonhurst, Bklyn)
                  Patsy's pizza for classic NY Italian-style pie
                  Joe's for a NY-style pizza slice
                  Cheese and salumi platters with condiments, Otto
                  Fruits-du-mer tower, Balthazar
                  Circus-themed dessert, Le Cirque
                  Shack Burger, Shake Shack
                  Rugelach, Zabar's
                  Sliced nova lox, Zabar's
                  Carnitas tacos, El Coatzingo, (Jackson Heights, Queens)
                  Frosted Flower Cupcake, Cupcake Cafe
                  Chocolate Challah breadsticks, Amy's Bread
                  Beef Cheek Ravioli, Babbo
                  Truffled egg toast, 'ino
                  Porterhouse with creamed spinach, Peter Luger
                  Fried Pork Dumplings, Dumpling House
                  Orecchiette with sausage and broccoli di rape, Roberto's (Belmont, Bronx)
                  Ribs, Dinosaur BBQ
                  Sashimi, uni and eel, Sushi Yasuda
                  Lobster roll, Pearl Oyster Bar

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: vvvindaloo

                    ok.. where is the dumpling house. the name alone sounds like my kid of place!!!

                    1. re: coconutgoddess

                      careful, they're addictive!

                      Vanessa's Dumpling House
                      118 Eldridge St, New York, NY 10002

                      1. re: coconutgoddess

                        I cannot be anywhere near Dumpling House without stopping in. Last Sunday, I was on my way to meet some friends for dinner in Chinatown and I STILL couldn't resist. I DID, however, limit myself to a single order of 5 succulent dumplings and a small Hot & Sour Soup ($2.00 total) - talk about self-control! Somehow, I still managed to enjoy a nice, big dinner at Kam Chueh on the Bowery. Oink.