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Manhattan trip report

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Here is my brief report of places I went to in Manhattan (and Brooklyn). I picked the places based primarily on my research of this board, so thanks everyone.

Katz's Deli - pastrami on rye, chocolate egg cream, knish - everything was excellent, i prefer the pastrami here over Langer's in Los Angeles

Xi'an Famous Foods - lamb burger - just ok and I really didn't like the bun, if I go again I would try other things

Russ & Daughters - lox and pickled herring - excellent

Crif Dogs - deep fried hot dog - just ok, Rutt's Hutt is much better, but its in New Jersey

Babbo - warm lamb tongue viniagrette, grilled octopus, beef cheek ravioli, black (squid ink) spaghetti, pappardelle bolognese, rabbit - best meal of the whole trip, everything was excellent

Yakiniku Takashi - various grilled meats and the uni and raw beef appetizer, the food and quality are excellent but this place is very expensive.

Momofuku Milk Bar - cereal soft serve - this is very addictive but is overpriced in my opinion

Peter Luger (Brooklyn) - bacon, steak for 2, spinach, and fries - i didn't like the bacon, but loved the steak (medium rare), spinach and fries, totally worth it

Cibao - cubano sandwich - pretty good, but not worth a special trip

Momofuku Ssam bar - pork belly buns, duck over rice, spicy rice cakes - the pork belly buns were good, the duck over rice good, and the spicy rice cakes were horrible - overall, i thought this place was overrated and overpriced, would not go back. Maybe my expectations were too high, but the food just wasn't good enough based on the hype and prices

John's on Bleecker - pizza - excellent pizza

Halal cart (the famous one) - lamb & chicken over rice - just ok, but I can definitely see the appeal as a late night snack after hitting the bars

Hakata Tonton - tonsoku w/mentaiko, garlic pork fried rice, grilled tonsoku - one of the best meals of the trip, everything was excellent

Gray's Papaya - hot dog - standard hot dog, just ok

Joe's Pizza - cheese slice - i like pizza so i liked this slice

Minetta Tavern - black label burger - excellent burger, I'd like to go back to try the steak for 2 next time

Tang by Gam Mi Oak (Flushing) - beef bone soup - not sure if this location is affiliated with the Gam Mi Oak in Manhattan, but I did enjoy the beef bone soup and the kimchee

La Taza de Oro - cafe on leche - i like coffee so I really liked the coffee here

Momofuku Ko - last but not least, I did manage to get a reservation for dinner here. Unlike Ssam bar, I felt that it was worth the price, and the hassle of getting a reservation. I enjoyed the food and the creativity and I had one of the best fish preparations I've had in awhile. Having said that, I probably would not go back, not because the food is bad, but there other places I think I would enjoy more for the same price point. I am glad that I tried it and would recommend that others that are considering this place to go check it out.

Overall, I had an excellent time eating, so thanks to the board for making it such a great trip.

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Russ & Daughters
179 E Houston St, New York, NY 10002

Katz's Delicatessen
205 E Houston St, New York, NY 10002

Gahm Mi Oak
43 W 32nd St, New York, NY 10001

Babbo
110 Waverly Pl, New York, NY 10011

Momofuku Ssam Bar
207 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

Minetta Tavern
113 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012

Hakata TonTon
61 Grove Street, New York, NY 10014

John's Pizzeria
278 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014

Joe's Pizza
7 Carmine St, New York, NY 10014

Momofuku Ko
163 1st Ave, New York, NY 10003

Crif Dogs
113 St Marks Pl, New York, NY 10009

Gray's Papaya
402 6th Ave, New York, NY 10014

La Taza de Oro
96 8th Ave, New York, NY 10011

Cibao
72 Clinton St, New York, NY 10002

Halal Chicken and Gyro
106 W 53rd St, New York, NY 10019

Xi'an Famous Foods
81 St. Marks Pl, New York, NY 10003

Momofuku Milk Bar
251 E 13th St, New York, NY 10003

Takashi
456 Hudson St, New York, NY 10011

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  1. Great report. You mentioned quite a few places that weren't on my radar. Glad you enjoyed your trip.

    1. Excellent!! Many thanks!!

      1. To me the thing to get a Xi'an Famous Foods is the Spicy Cumin Lamb with Hand Pulled Noodles. That will may a convert out of anyone. I hope you get a chance to try it on your next trip.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Anthony A

          Agreed. Never had the cumin lamb, but the other hand-pulled noodles I've had from Xi'an have been great. However, I was uhh...less than enamored with the pork burger.

        2. Nice assortment of places. Good report

          1. Considering the other places you went to (Babbo & Ko), I'm surprised you found Takashi to be "very expensive".

            I recently went there with a few friends, we ordered what seemed to be about a 1/4 of a cow & 4 bottles of wine between the 5 of us, and ended up paying $90 each. Yes, that includes tip.

            I was completely stumped at how cheap that dinner was....