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Mar 9, 2008 06:53 PM

2 Montreal cooks 3-4 days in NY

Hi my girlfriend and I have a rare few days off at the end of March and want to take advantage of this time to visit. We have a couple of places already in mind but would love t hear from the locals , the places not to miss. We are looking not only for places to eat (from fast food to higher-end) but also places to shop for interesting goods to bring back. Also just any place of interest that you think we should check out. We are already planning to check out WD-50, Blue Hill, Yakitori totto, Korin, JB prince, MOMA (ok ti's not food related but...) and one of the momofuku's if we can. Let us know where else we should go?

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  1. You sound like you're doing pretty good with your list already. Momofuku Ssam is a good choice. Also in that neighborhood is Hearth, although a little more expensive. And if you're on the Upper East Side (not far from the Met) you might try Beyoglu for Turkish mezes.

    1 Reply
    1. re: douglas525

      I think Douglas means "not far from the Met (Museum)"
      Another fine Turkish delight on the UWS and nearer the Met(ropolitan Opera) is Zeytin at 85th & Columbus.

      I also think you ought to consider a lunch at Per Se (dinner would be ghastly expensive)

    2. From one Montrealer to another, if you can snag a table at Babbo, by all means do. It's probably too late, but you might be ever so lucky to get a stool at the bar. If that is not doable, Lupa is another Batali joint not very far and slightly easier to get in. There's also Inoteca on Rivington in the Lower East Side that is worth visiting. For simple but good breakfast or lunch, I really like Le Pain Quotidien and its communal table, there are many locations throughout Manhattan and there's one not too far from the MET on Lexington between 64th and 63rd, close to the sebway station.

      For goods, Kee's chocolate in Soho is really nice. If you feel like hopping on the bandwagon, Rice to Riches offers quite yummy rice pudding in really fun flavors. I'd say it's the Hâvre-aux-glaces of rice pudding and it's located in Soho on Spring Street (between Mulberry and Mott).

      1. Since Montreal is short on good Indian food, and if you don't get to Toronto regularly, you might want to try Devi.

        If you're interested in a classic NY bagel, one of the few places left to find the real thing is the Bagel Hole in Park Slope (Brooklyn).

        If you get to Totto, the desserts are great--apricot kernel tofu pudding and green tea pudding.

        Now that Second Avenue deli is back in business, that's another good NY bet.

        1. In the same price range as Blue Hill and WD-50, I would strongly recommend Olana, Dovetail, and Bar Blanc. Very interesting and creative contemporary food.

          1. Please... do us Montrealers a favour. Check out some of the burger recs (I am a huge fan of the Burger Joint in the Parker Meridien) and then come back and open a really great place for burgers....

            Pickles in the Lower East Side: Pickle Guys have the most incredible pickles of all different varieties and vegetables. Apparently Gus is good too, but I haven't been there. Get the donuts at the Donut Plant while you are there, and stop off in Chinatown for a soup dumpling (The dumpling has soup inside it - it is very unique). Just do a search on this board to find some places to go to try it.

            If on the Upper West Side, you've got to check out Zabars and all their products. I like their strudel, they have a great selection of smoked fish products, lots of great food products in general and have some excellent packaged rugelah.

            Get a package of Ice Cream mochi at Beard Papa.

            These are some of the things you can't get in Montreal easily, if at all.

            3 Replies
            1. re: moh

              thanks for the replies keep them coming, Lunch at Per Se would be great but I think A- it's much too late to book and B- Not sure my budget can allow it. I will look into it. Babbo has been on my mind too, kitchen arts and lettters. How is transportation using subway from outer burroughs to downtown? we still have time to change hotel and if transport from queens or brooklyn is easy we could save for that potential extra meal elsewhere? thanks for the help.

              1. re: cricklewood

                The NYC subway system is great. There are a lot of new hotels in the LIC area of Queens and in Downtown Brooklyn. If you stay in LIC, you're about a 5-10 minute subway ride to Midtown. If you're staying in Downtown Brooklyn, it's about a 5-10 min subway ride to Lower Manhattan (Financial District).

                I would also definitely check out bagels here. While I LOVE Montreal bagels, the NY one is good as well (just very different -- fatter and not as sweet). You may also want to try Katz's pastrami and see how it stacks up to Montreal smoked meat.

                1. re: cricklewood

                  We were in Brooklyn (Park Slopes) last month and it took us all of 20 minutes to get to SoHo which is very good and they're was free street parking behind the hotel (Holiday Inn Express on Union St., 1 min walk from the subway).

                  As for burgers, I've still got to get to Shake Shack as they're supposed to be really good.