Bibble and Sip’s Yummy Baked Goods and Coffee

Bibble and Sip

Bibble and Sip

After a recent lunch on West 51st I came upon Bibble and Sip, a great spot for tasty baked goods that include a Chocolate Chip cookie that uses Brownies for the chips, Banana Bread infused with Earl Grey Tea, Cream Puffs and other assorted baked goods. For coffee they use Counter Culture (one of my faves) and offer about a half dozen variety of beans for Pour Overs.  For when its hot out not only do they have Iced Coffee, they have Iced Mint Coffee! Summertime specials include homemade ice cream sandwiches with honey lavender or coffee ice cream. Add Bibble and Sip to your go to Coffee and baked goods spots.

Bibble and Sip

Bibble and Sip

Bibble and Sip

Bibble and Sip

Bubble and Sip is located at 253 West 51st Street

Donna Bell’s Southern Baked Delights on West 49th

Donna Bell

Just west of the Theater District on 49th Street sits Donna Bell’s offering off the charts Southern style baked goods that include on the savory side Breakfast Biscuit sandwiches with thick cut ham, cheese and eggs, Cornbread and Scones. On the sweet side Peppermint Candy layer cake looks insane and I field tested the crazy good Peanut Butter square. Bonus points for Cafe Du Monde coffee. Sandwiches and salads are also available along with daily specials. If you have a sweet-tooth you need make your way west…

Donna Bell’s is located at 301 West 49th Street

DB's PB Bar

#Tsukushi ‘s Late Night #Ramen

Tsukushi

While discussing spots to eat in Murray Hill recently a neighbor of mine told me about Tsukushi an authentic Izakaya Japanese Omakase restaurant off a side street by the UN that after 10:30pm serves a limited menu including very good Ramen. It piqued my interest but when would I go for dinner that late? As it turned out after catching Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation and getting out after 10:00pm a bit hungry while trying to figure out what was still open I remembered the “place with the black awning off 41st Street”

Inside Tsukushi is a small space with blond wood tables for about two dozen and a curved bar that seats about 10 seats at the curved bar. The menu turned out to have more items then I expected. Of note, the menu (see picture below) looks like an Omakase menu without any prices on it, have no no fear after 10:30pm it is a la carte and gently priced with main courses averaging only $10.00. I ordered the Ramen(soy sauce based with Pork, Egg and thin noodles), and my friend the Crab Fried Rice. We also enjoyed Salmon and Spicy Cod Roe Onigiri (rice balls) to start and drank bottles of Sapporo Reserve Beer. Everything was very good and size wise totally hit the spot for a late meal, satisfying without leaving one stuffed. Tsukushi’s Ramen, soup and rice dishes are a great late night alternative to the usual suspects.

Tsukushi

 

Tsukushi

 

Tsukushi

Tsukushi is located at 300 East 41st Street

K Rico: El Sudoamericano Steakhouse- Epic Burgers

K Rico

K Rico

After wandering around 9th Avenue trying to decide where to go for a late lunch and kinda craving red meat I came upon K-Rico, Latin American Steakhouse. One look at the menu and seeing a steak sandwich and a couple of burgers including one with Aji aioli and Pork Belly jam I walked right in and grabbed a seat at the bar. The Short Rib burger was highly recommended, but I loved the toppings on the Prime Burger…so I asked for the short rib patty topped with the Prime’s caramelized onion ,Oaxaca cheese, Aji aloi and that Pork Belly jam. This burger is one of the best I’ve ever had, it’s a work of art. My stomach and heart got into a bit of a heated debate over it. My stomach winning telling my heart to “man up” and do it’s job. It came with huge steak house fries dusted with cheese and herbs. I dipped them in the house made thick and delish Chimmichurri vs ketchup.

As it turned out the gent serving me was one of the owners Tommy Greco, a  great guy, very gracious. He shared with me that his brother John is the Executive Chef who butchers the meat and dry ages it in-house. It most definitely shows. The Short Rib meat lit up my taste buds while the amazing topping selection fired off taste sensations across the synapses of my brain. I’ll be back to try out some more of the delicious South American food on this menu. The space is great with a long bar upfront, nice sized dining room and outdoor patio in the back. If you’re a carnivore, you need to add K Rico to your 2015 list of new places to try and Best Burgers…

 

K Rico

K Rico

K Rico

K Rico

K Rico Steak House is located at 772 9th Avenue

Kin Shop: Upscale Refined Thai

Kin Shop

Kin Shop

 

For Restaurant Week I hit KIn Shop with a group of fellow travelers from Gogobot for some tasty Thai from the kitchen of Top Chef winner Harold Dieterle. While perusing the Prix Fixe menu we ordered up a nice Riesling to go with our meal. To start most of our party choose the Mussels in a Siamese Green Curry broth, while I opted for the Kale and Watermelon Salad with Coconut and Brazil nuts in a Lemongrass dressing. My friends loved the Curry, I enjoyed my salad and really like the coconut and dressing, but expected a bit more Watermelon then the crouton sized cubes.

For my entree I choose the Skate and Calamari in Jungle Curry with a side of Jasmine Rice since it had four stars symbolizing very hot. While it was very good, it wasn’t that spicy, though in all fairness I eat Phaal(insane hot from India) sauce, so I may not be the best barometer of heat. The rest of our crew had the Spicy Noodles with Bok Choy and Cauliflower which they all enjoyed. From the desert selection most of us went with the Ginger Cookie with Kaffir ice cream sandwiches while one of our friends who recently returned from a whirlwind tour of Asia opted for the Passion Fruit Mousse. Desert was devoured rather quickly. Overall I thought the food was very tasty though a bit more refined and a bit less spicy then I’m used to. For those not spice crazy looking to enjoy some Thai food…Kin Folk will be perfect.

Kin Shop

Kin Shop

Kin Shop

Kin Shop

Kin Shop is located at 469 6th Avenue

UrbanSpace Penn Plates

IMG_8557UrbanSpaces Penn Plates

Do you work by or commute through Penn Station, looking for something new and exciting  to go grab a bite or a beverage? Urban Space Penn Plates opened  up on 34th Street between 7th and 8th Avenues with about 10 spots that include Tacos, Sushi wraps, BBQ and Turkish Gozleme. Of note, though I love Mexican food 4 or 5 of the spots were serving it…would like a bit more diversity cuisine wise here,  though still plenty to choose from. After viewing the options I ordered from Uma Temakeria their Tsumi Tuna a hand-roll of Yellowfin Tuna, Wasabi and Green Apple which was fresh and tasty with the Green Apples really making a nice twist. To drink I went to Sigmund’s for a Mint Lemonade Vodka that at Happy Hour came with a free Pretzel.l I choose their Gruyere Paprika.

My buds started with Kale Salads and Octopus Empanadas from Macondo and then hit Jicama for their Taco Salads that came with with Pork or Shrimp, Corn, Mango, and Watermelon Radish. Of note, Macondo plays good tunes so its a good spot to grab a table by. The tunes were so good one of my buds started dancing while waiting for his food…and was joined by a lady, who kinda terrified him. You had to be there:) Overall, a great spot to grab a bite outside by Penn Station. Just be careful if you decide to bust a move…

UrbanSpace Penn Plates  is located at on West 34th between 7th and 8th Open till November 15 2015

UrbanSpaces Penn Plates

UrbanSpaces Penn Plates

UrbanSpace Penn Plates  is located at on West 34th between 7th and 8th Open till November 15 2015

Nippori NY- Superior Sushi and Rocking Ramen

Nippori Sushi

Nippori Sushi

I was up for some sushi and after a little on-line research I came upon Nippori. They have a rather large selection of lunch items and an even larger dinner menu. I choose the Yellowtail scallion, spicy Hamachi(Yellowtail), and Eel and Avocado rolls from the Three Roll Maki combo to satisfy my sushi cravings. Though the selection of rolls here is smaller than most (10 rolls on the lunch special at best) the quality here was superior to most. The Sushi lunch comes with soup and salad. Both were better then usual, a nice selection of Spring greens and an exceptional Miso soup.

They do charge for tea here (though only$1.50) which is a proverbial per peeve of mine. However do to the quality of the food, service and setting(good looking place inside with lots of dark wood, a long marble bar and traditional Japanese seating booths)I think I can let it slide and add Nippori to my go to Sushi lunch spots. On a recent visit I had from their Ramen selection the spicy Sutamina which was very good and a half bowl of rice(only $5 with a Ramen order) topped with golden roe and big slices of Tuna, Salmon and Yellowtail. If you’re looking for some superior Sushi and Japanese cooking in Midtown check this place out.

Nippori is located at 245 West 51st  Street

 

 

Nippori

Nippori

Nippori is located at 245 West 51st  Street

Mikey Likes It Ice Cream

Mikey's Mint with Fudge Brownies

Mikey’s Mint with Fudge Brownies

Local boy Michael “Mikey” Cole does good opening up a sweet little lce Cream shop in the East Village serving twists on classic flavors and coming up with some new ones. The night I went 2/3 of the flavors were already sold out! I tasted a couple of the chocolates and the Mint with Brownies. The Chocolates were good, but I’m a dark chocolate guy lately and these would appeal more to those who love Milk Chocolate. So I ordered up a pint of the Mint. I’ll be back to try Mikey’s take on Coconut and Banana Ice Cream and see what other flavors he has up his sleeve.

Micky Likes It Ice Cream is located at 199 Avenue A

Harry & Ida’s Meat and Supply Company

Harry & Ida's Pastrami

Harry & Ida’s Pastrami

Off the charts thick cut Pastrami is the star of Harry & Ida’s, the new old school East Village Sandwich Shop/General Store. Shelves of Preserves, Salsas, Hot Sauces, Bitters and pickled goods line the walls. Along with the Pastrami, Bacon, Country Ham, Smoked Eel, and Bluefish Salad are the highlights of the Sandwich menu(available by the pound as well). I picked up some of the Pastrami after a taste…no way I was walking out without some. They do not slice it sandwich thin here, they cut it like think cut Brisket. This stuff is the Filet Mignon of Pastrami. Of note, I usually like my Pastrami on Rye but I had a Sesame  Bagel from Black Seed on hand and with some of  Harry & Ida’s mustard slathered on it, A-mazing. I can’t wait to try their Bacon and explore their selves some more.

Harry & Ida’s is located at 189 Avenue A

@SketchBkProject :Brooklyn Art Library Presents Pazzi, Decastro, and Aun

DECASTRO

DECASTRO

Have you been to Brooklyn’s very own sketchbook library yet? The concept is this, you buy a blank sketchbook from them, choose from an assortment of topics, get sketching and then send it in. Then it gets sent around the county as part of a tour before becoming a part of the Library in Brooklyn. You can have it digitized as well. This past Tuesday three talented Artists presented their sketchbooks.

Alberto Pazzi hails from Mexico and sees himself not so much an Artist but as a Pirate. Not in the eye-patch and peg-leg sort of way but as in the learn as you go, trial and error vs traditional schooling model. As a kid instead of coloring books and crayons his Dad gave him blank paper and  pencils and said…”create your own pictures”. He did and now though his work he wants to make people laugh, think and connect

Karolleen Decosta recently moved from LA to NYC and discovered that the natives here walk the streets and take public transport to get around. Her sketchbook is based upon the sights, sounds and smells from her daily observations on the street, a new experience for this LA native. Of note, she runs a project called Side Hustle NYC for those of us who love to paint and sketch etc but have to work a profession to pay the bills. Looking forward to her next event…

Sonni Aun grew up all over the globe. She heard about the Sketchbook Project from an Art School friend. She’s fascinated by anatomy, science and the organic line between beauty and the grotesque. Would like to see her do some alien figures.

The concept of interpreting stories was a theme for all three artists…of capturing the moment. See the pics below to see samples of their works, get inspired, maybe do a sketchbook of your own, or just browse the amazing works from Artists from all around the world. Then ponder what kind of world we would live in if we as a species spent more time creating Art…than all the other less then productive things we do.

Btw you can check out my sketchbook(did it a few years ago, so may be time for another) “We Could be Heroes” at sketchbookproject.com/library  #S120921

The Sketchbook Project is located at 103A North 3rd Street, Williamsburg