New York New York Food Tour 2

It has been officially 2 years since my last blog post about New York. My love for it hasn’t changed and going back this summer only solidified my infatuation with the place. These are a just a few of many places I went to during my stay:

Milk Bar

So my bestie Banke, who recently moved to New York was the first friend I saw on my solo trip to New York. She  recommended this place to me and I was so charmed by the little store. We went to the one on 2nd ave and both got the cereal milk soft serve with sprinkles. Such a delight in the extremely hot weather. We sat outside on a little bench and made a new friend Anthony. Anthony swiftly recommended the “Crack pie” which I thought was such a cool name and when he kindly offered me a piece, I tasted it and realised it indeed was crack. He was a nurse turned street artist with aspirations to be a chef. We bonded talking about the chefs table documentaries on Netflix and l gave him recommendations on culinary school. All in all milk bar encompassed all I love about New York. Quiet corner, a little bench, unapologetic greed and interesting people bonding over the good kind of crack.img_2292

My bestie Banke

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Cereal Soft Serve with Sprinkles.

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After Andrew raved about the crack pie it was so good I had to go back inside for my own slice.Which I carried in my bag all day for a constant snack.

Cotenna

Walking through west village that night, Banke and I came across this tiny utterly adorable Italian restaurant. She left me to head to Philly and so for dinner I decided to take Chrissy Teigen’s Cravings cookbook out on a date.  I went back  and sat at the bar where I had one of the best montepulciano reds I’ve ever had coupled with the best lobster ravioli as well. Little parcels of pasta filled (quite generously) with lobster in a phenomenal bisque sauce. The icing on the cake was a chocolate fondant with vanilla ice cream. Another woman sitting at the bar along with the kind bartender were both fluent in French and found themselves in a full blown debate over their love for Frank Sinatra all whilst Etta James serenaded in the background.
The sous chef also fluent in French came in to start his shift with his adorable son who sat in the corner and had his spaghetti in peace. You could feel the family vibe and again all Italians speaking in French made for a very international meal in the best of settings. img_2307

 

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You can just see the richness of the sauce, and the size was perfect too.

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Absolutely nailed it!

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The welcoming exterior is what drew us to it, also what I love is that it isn’t obvious unless you peer in that a restaurant existed. A perfect evening all round.

Lafayette

The next day for lunch, again walking through East Village I came across  Lafayette on Lafayette street and decided to take myself to lunch there. This French bistro bustling during lunch time was the perfect location to write this blog post. I got the beef tartar to start. An elegant looking dish that was fresh and just all round perfect with a quails egg barely cooked placed delicately on top. I then got the duck ragu which I thought was unique because I had never seen that before with crispy rosemary. What a delight. I was in love and I swear next I come to New York I will haunt for that duck ragu again. Dessert time came and although stuffed I felt it would be wrong not to indulge so I wandered over to the beautiful display and found a colourful array of pastry magic. After deliberating between the Casara slice (hazelnut dacquoise chocolate ganache and cascara coffee mouse) and the birthday cake macaroons. I decided on the macaroons but ashamedly I wolfed them down before I remembered to take a picture. Anyway my greed can dictate for how good the food was.

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Look how perfect the plate is!

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The most fabulous Ragu! And Chrissy’s book made another appearance 🙂

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My dream in a case.

Norma’s

Now I know I featured this spot on my last New York blogpost but it’s so good I had to go again. I took my friend Simi who studies law at Columbia. She had not been and when the crunchy French toast reached the table I almost exclaimed with how large it was. Apart from being hilarious company Simi is another lover of food. We shared the crunchy French toast, warm with tones of cinnamon and nutmeg with warm caramel sauce and then we got the prawn quesadillas with mango and chilli salsa. Devine. If Norma’s accomplished anything after such a big meal, we went and spent 2 hours at the MoMa which was brilliant although Simi had me laughing at inappropriate times. I then felt compelled to walk all the way from east 56th ave all the way to Washington square park to my hotel. It took me an hour and a half and although I cursed carbs all the way I know in my heart that as long as a plane will bring me back to New York I shall continue to seek out Norma’s.

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We honestly couldn’t finish this

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Perfection, and again they were generous with the prawns

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Simi at MoMa

Dominique Ansel Kitchen

Now as far as some of my hero’s in the pastry world go. Dominique Ansel represents for me all I want to accomplish with Eden. He is so creative and I have been a fan since the very first Cronut he invented. He hosts an eight person tasting session, with 9 courses through the American dream and I swear once my flight was confirmed this tasting was the next thing I booked. I took my sister and we made a night of it. Everything was spectacularly planned and we were taken on a journey from the beginning to the current idea of what it means to want the American Dream. From the white picket fence to sieving coffee beans to discover nuggets of gold, to an actual computer where when you inserted a floppy disc (remember those?) would bring out a warm chocolate waffle and finally we were brought to the current age where a marshmallow sheep not only represented our “me-too” culture but through wine he created edible filters for achieving the perfect picture. It was a stunning evening that inspired me greatly.

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So there you have it friends! A trip well spent. My next post will focus more on what 4 days mostly on my own in New York taught me but for now lets savour in the blessing that is good food. It not only frames our conversations, our activities and even relationships but serves as a fantastic memory bank for a life well lived. Thank you New York for so many bank filled moments.

 

Lots of love,

Mika xo

 

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