Macondo West: Village Latin Fusion Brunch



A short while ago I had a great dinner at Barraca so when I needed a spot for Brunch in the WV/MPD I figured I’d give their Latin hermano next store a whirl. The menu is broken into Entrees, Eggs, Sides, Burgers, Ceviches, a large selection of Tapas and a nice selection of Cocktails along with a number of Sangria’s. I went with the Valencia comprised of a Rose base with Vodka, Grapefruit, some Ginger and fruit while my dining companion opted for a Lemonade. Much like at Barraca, the Sangria’s here are a bit more like well crafted cocktails then your usual version.

Since there was so much to choose from we decided to share a number of items from the menu. We both enjoy seafood and I love Ceviche so we planned on ordering a couple but they were not serving them during our visit for some reason…so we adapted, improvised and overcame by ordering the Eggs Benedict with Smoked Salmon topped with a lemon aioli over Arepas (of note I think sweet corn Arepas make a superior Benedict) a side of Guacamole that was very fresh and seasoned just right. You have a choice of 2 out of 4 Salsas. We choose the Guajillo (smokey) and the Tomatillo (fresh and vibrant). The Guac portion is small, the chips portion large. Since Summer is coming we ordered the Kale Salad with dulce de membrillo(quince) and pumpkin seeds topped with Manchego cheese in a lemon chipoltel vinaigrette that was absolutely delish,  When stuff tastes this good why not go healthy? The only other seafood choice available was the Shrimp Empanada’s, while good, not great, but did the job of filling us up.

Inside Macondo is a bright airy space with lots of turquoise and in their backyard is a beautiful wall sized Day of the Dead painting. Of note, it does get a little loud inside during brunch likely due to those who choose the unlimited Mimosa’s(2hour limit). We didn’t get a chance to check out the desert menu, it was just too nice out and we opted for some sunshine…

Macondo West is located at 2 Bank Street

Art Expo 2015 Highlights





This years Art Expo was another hit and quite a huge show, my favorites are listed below. I really enjoyed speaking with Peter Terrin, Blake Emory, and ONE on their works, processes and tools of the trade. I’m going to let their work speak for itself. Of note, Peter Terrin  used an awesome new App called IBeacon  at the show so you can learn more about his work, expect to see more of this at future Art Events.

Peter Terrin’s huge Faces painted with a Palette knifeBlake Emory’s Optical illusions in B&W w/shadows of women’s bodies and his Yugen(Japanese for to search for beauty through sadness)FacesOne (Louise L’s) Figurative Abstract Oil paintings

Ron and Shieka Ruiz’s Bronze Musicians

Shelley Lake’s computer generated art

Guillermo De Rosa’s Colorful girls

Indonesian Artists Mystique – Edi Jatmiko and R. Sumantri’s Dali with Batman, Robin and Superman

Olga Rykova Queen of Spades artist with model in attendance

Carmen L Stiffelman’s Gemini Bronzes

#GenuineSuperette: Cali-American Classics in Little Italy


Newly opened Genuine Superette is the sister restaurant to Gotham West’s Roadside offering Classic American California Roadside Stand food done up right by a collaboration of high end chefs including Brad Farmerie, Paul Liebrant, Sam Mason, and Eben Freeman doing their take on Burgers, Fried Chicken Sandwiches, Tacos, etc. You order your meal up front(Ice Cream at a separate station in the back) like at a cafeteria and then grab a seat at a community table or one of the high bar stool tables and a friendly and sweet waitress will bring you your food and drink.

Up at Roadside I’ve enjoyed their tasty Spicy Smokehouse Burger (topped with bacon, smoked Gouda ,and charred  jalapeno  mayo) he Chili topped fries and  Shrimp Tacos (with grilled Citrus Slaw, charred  jalapeno mayo, pineapple and cucumber salsa on corn tortillas). Thus when I heard they opened up a new location in my more often visited stomping grounds I headed down to check it out.

For my first entree at the new location on Grand Street I tried their take on Shrimp grits which had the grits substituted by soft Polenta (Italian for grits) triangles that looked almost liked like Challah French Toast like covered in shrimp(6), bacon, scallions and a smoky mushrooms sauce with a bit of heat that hit the spot. While the dish looked moderate in size it was filling. Your call if you will really need a side… though the Chili topped fries are pretty awesome. Do try to save room for the Oddfellows by Sam Mason awesome ice cream flavors like Cherry Miso…

Genuine Superette is located at 191 Grand Street

Catherine Ahnell Gallery presents @AntoineVerglas and Senz


Tonight was the opening for the collaboration between world renowned photographer Antoine Verglas and Street Artist Senz. The works are very large multi-media pieces on canvas whereby Senz took famous Verglas photos of beauties Penelope Cruz, Angela Jolie and Carrie Otis to name a few and combined them with his signature Street Art style to make an edgy unique statement. This show is a limited engagement Pop Up and only on till this Sunday, April 27th.

Catherine Ahnell Gallery is located at 66 Grand Street

Martin Lawrence Galleries Presents: Kostabi

IMG_7480 IMG_7479

Martin Lawrence Galleries tonight hosted a Meet the Artist event featuring the newest works by Pop Art Superstar Kostabi. He’s well known for his faceless featureless characters that speak volumes. I noticed his new featured works were a bit brighter then usual with many having a playful sexual nature to them. While admiring some of them the Artist who was in attendance shared with a group that a work in question of a female form was actually not a woman but paint out of a tube representing the personification of creativity. I asked him about the palette being brighter then usual and he stated that he is in a very happy place in his life currently living between NY and Italy and the bright colors are an expression of this joy. The crowd tonight was rather eclectic and colorful  as well making the event that much more entertaining.

IMG_7484 IMG_7483 IMG_7482

Martin Lawrence Galleries
is located at 457 West Broadway

Takumi Japanese Mexican Fusion Tacos y Nachos!


I originally discovered Takumi’s awesome and inventive Japanese twist on Mexican food at Smorgasburg a couple of years back and always wondered when they would go Brink n Mortar. Recently they took some space in Chelsea Market location serving their Japanese spin on Mexican Street food. Think Spicy Tuna Tacos, Green Curry Beef Rice bowls and Nachos topped with like goods. Takumi starts with traditional Nacho trips and from there turns the dish on it’s head topping them with Ginger Pico de Gallo, Yuzu Guacamole, Wasabi Crema, Napa Slaw, Cojita cheese and a protein I had to go Spicy Tuna. While familiar at it’s core this delicious spin tastes like nothing you’ve had before. To drink I had their Iced Tea…their Lychee Iced Tea. I was a big fan when I first had their Tacos but these Nachos make a stop at Takumi a must do on any Foodies list.

Takumi Taco is located at 95 9th Avenue in the Chelsea Market

Soap Cherie: Dead Sea Salt Scrubs & Handmade Bath Products from Bushwick


Have you ever been to the Dead Sea in the Land of Milk and Honey to enjoy it’s restorative powers? New body and bath emporium Soap Cherie on Bedford carries Dead Sea Salt scrubs and lotions from Israel and makes their own Bath Oils, Bubble Bath, Soaps(Seaweed, Lavender, Mud, Peppermint, etc) Candles and  Hot Oil massage tins(though they were mini candies) in Bushwick Brooklyn. They have a sink set up to experience their products for yourself.  You wash your hands(I tried the Coconut Lime scrub) then they dab you with some lotion…my hands felt crazy silky smooth.  Soap Chere is a great spot to pick up a gift for that special someone(Mother’s Day is almost here) or just to grab some great soaps or a new candle to brighten your mood for yourself.

Soap Chere is located at 218 Bedford Avenue


Devocion Coffee Straight out of Bogota to Williamsburg

Straight out of Bogota Columbia, Devocion is the US based sister located in the southern edgier section of Williamsburg. When you first walk in you see the room where their keep the beans and roast them on premise. Then you enter a ginormous spacious cafe with high ceilings, a wall of foliage, two big comfy leather couches and lots of wooden tables.

You choose from Espresso’s, Pour Overs and French Press brews or of course their Tea selection. If your hungry Devocion has a  great selection of baked goods to enjoy as well that vary from doughnuts to croissants and Empanadas. I was temped by the Doughnuts but decided to stick with the Latin vibe and go healthy with a verde Spinach y Queso Empanada. The spinach tasted like what you get at a high end Italian restaurant. Of note, on my next visit I broke down with an Hibiscus glazed doughnut, it was so worth the calories. If you like cherry you will love Hibiscus. For my coffees I’ve tried thus far their Wild forest and El Toro French Pressed. Both were rich and flavorful, available by the bean in a bag to go as well. Yes, they do have WiFi if you need to get some work done, write your Blog, plan your trip or just chill out and enjoy some conversation.

Devocion is located at 69 Grand street in Williamsburg


Eons: Nutritious and Delicious Greek Burrito’s and Salad/Rice Bowls


Murray Hill has a great new spot in Eons on second Avenue. Eons serves Greek food like at the popular Salad Bowl joints. You choose from a;

Base: Pita, rice bowl or salad bowl

Protein -Octopus, Shrimp and Lamb are among the choices(there is a veggie option)

Salad Toppings: that include Chickpeas, Beets, and Lima beans, Greek Salad

Spread, Hummus, Feta Cheese, Tzatziki

and then(you thought you were done?:) salad toppings(traditional Greek). I enjoyed the Lamb with the Greek Salad and beets topped with feta spread my fist time and chicken with beets and the Eons salad(faro, cucumber, mint, parsley) with Tzatziki the next. Of note after you choose everything you can then add all the toppings that make up a Greek salad as well. So keep that I mind when choosing your toppings and spreads. To drink bottled water and Boylans(some of my fave) sodas in bottles or even better if staying via the fountain.

Service is fast and friendly and it’s a nice clean minimalist space. Eons offers a great healthy and reasonable priced spot to the neighborhood and it’s located right by the NYSC for an after workout meal or a great quick meal before catching a flick at the AMC Lowes Kips Bay 15 down and across the street.

Eons is located at 633 2nd Avenue 

#Nyonya #Malaysian on Grand Street

Sambal Shrimp Nyonya

Do you enjoy Malaysian food or have yet to try this delicious cuisine? I recently found a great spot for it with killer lunch specials. Nyonya is located on Grand Street kind of where Little Italy and Chinatown’s lines blur. Malaysian dishes are similar to Thai if you have not had it before, but has it’s own distinct flavors. If you love heat and mango’s you will especially like it. I went for lunch and had a tough time choosing from the huge selection of entrees served with rice, many of them with Shrimp for just $6.96(Hunter Hint: for an extra $.50 go Coconut rice)

After much deliberation between the Mango Shrimp, Sambal Shrimp, and the Nasi Lemak (a rice dish cooked in Coconut Milk and spices) I chose the Sambal since it’s my litmus test for Malaysian cuisine. Of note, dishes marked with a hot pepper for spicy are spicy. I normally have to order it hot and say I’ve been to SE Asia to get it this hot. The lunch specials comes with a daily soup to start. The day I went it was a Chicken Broth that was tasty, thought more of what I would expect in a Jewish Deli.

The Sambal as stated was packing some heat and came with a fair amount of shrimp. The ginger, chili peppers, savory fish paste, garlic, and lime danced across my tongue. The Coconut rice was amazing and really added to the spices in the Sambal sauce. The space is fairly large with brick walls and wooden tables with cool H backed chairs. Just note, have some patience, service is pleasant but so-so. I’ll be back to work my way through this menu…

Nyonya is located at 199 Grand Street