Faux Meat at Red Bamboo

Processed with VSCOcam with hb1 presetThere are some times where we want to be healthy.  Healthy times are rare times, however of course there would be this really hip asian fusion soul food that is VEGAN / VEGETARIAN in our greatest city ever.  A small intimate dining area – Red Bamboo would be an ideal date spot.

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Novecento Holiday Party

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Hey, world.  It’s been crazy busy and Vic and I don’t get to see each other often since we’re both working and separated physically!  Therefore, regardless of how insanely late this is, we wanted to share our experience at Novecento.  An Argentinian restaurant/bar.  Pinky is interning and the company had a office holiday dinner party there.  Here were the menus for that night! {Apologies for the blurry photos, it was super dark!}

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O Sole Mio

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2194 Nesconset Hwy
Stony Brook, NY 11790

We already reviewed the garlic knots for this place in a previous entry, however we definitely wanted to come back to try their actual PASTA! What other great opportunity would we take rather than when we visit our alma mater again? And this time, we had some extra taste buds from our friend, Mary.

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On this bustling Saturday night, the place was crowded in the front because of the take-out/pizza parlor near the entrance.  On the other hand, if you’re in the mood for some nice lighting and fancy sit-down dining you can go ahead and speak with the hostess.

That’s what we did!  We received some complimentary garlic knots,slices of bread, and bruschetta upon seating, as well as a plate of some good olive oil to dip.

There were many many choices of pasta, so we took a bit of time to decide.  Here is the menu for your review.  Our first choice was the appetizer Fried Ravioli.  Our server was nice enough to be patient with us and gave us some space to decide.

Mary ordered the Pasta Siciliana and Vic/I got the Alla Vodka.

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Fried Ravioli
Filled with ricotta cheese, lightly breaded and fried to perfection. Served with a side of tomato sauce for dipping. $8.99
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Pasta Siciliana
Served with pan fried eggplant in a filetto di pomodoro sauce with Rigatoni $12.50
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Alla Vodka
Pink cream and vodka sauce with a touch of meat with Linguine $13.50

Pinky says 4/5 16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg

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I definitely recommend this place to who ever loves pasta (like I do).  Oftentimes I have these huge pasta cravings and now I wish that I went to O Sole Mio more while I was studying at Stony.  Actually, perhaps not because I would say that this place is not that cheap, but the portions are huge.  I would probably be more broke than I am now!  Great atmosphere and service for a good special occasion meal though.  The pasta that I had was really heavy.  This is not for the weak!  With everything, less is always more because I felt really disgusting near the end and felt like I was drinking heavy cream.   I could barely finish it, even though the waiter split the meal into half for Victor and me. BUT I WILL STILL HAVE IT AGAIN! Mm fat.

I tried some of Mary’s pasta and I loved the taste too.  The eggplant went really well with the sauce, despite the fact that I am not a big fan of eggplant.  The ravioli was just alright though.  I’m not sure what else they could have done to it to make it more special, but perhaps it was just because of the regular marinara sauce it was served with.  It was pretty pricey for only a couple of pieces.  The garlic knots in the beginning of the meal were again delicious, just like the last time we had them!

Victor says 4/5 Fish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnail

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Although this isn’t my first time here, it’s my first time in the restaurant portion of this Italian Restaurant/ Pizza Take-Out.  I actually wish I have gone here more too. The food here is just always so good. I just assumed this was mediocre,  since it was always advertised around the college we were at. Everything about this place is just wonderful. The pizzas here are like the (good) pizzas in New York City with the thin crust and perfect amount of cheese.

If you’re coming here to sit and dine, its a completely different atmosphere compared to the pizza take-out section. It actually feels like you’re in a fancy restaurant. The waiters are wonderful and are always stopping by to see if everything alright (which it was!)

The garlic knots,  slices of bread, and bruschetta were quite delectable.

The fried ravioli was okay, I guess. I don’t know what to really expect. I’ve always heard people rave about fried raviolis, but it didn’t stand out to me.  Maybe I’m just not the biggest fan of ricotta cheese.  Pinky and I ordered the Alla Vodka and the waiter was kind enough to split our plate into two dishes! I actually really enjoyed this dish and I think I could have finished one whole plate by myself 😛 The sauce was sweet, but it was really heavy and thick for a sauce. The added cheese gave it a more creamy texture. Everything just seemed right about this pasta. Nothing was overcooked and it just went well together. I’d get it again if I came here! I tried Mary’s pasta too! The taste wasn’t quite memorable, but I’m not the biggest fan of eggplant either.

So if you’re in the area, come check this place out for their pizzas, pastas, and everything else!

20131206_183220Thanks to Mary for chilling with us! And for letting us borrow your phone for these pictures…haha

Merry Christmas!

DSCN8573Season’s greetings! Here is a photo of us from last year when we were still in school. Seems like ages ago. We wish you all a lovely holiday, a glorious new year, and more importantly…to have delicious foods to eat.

We hope you celebrate the real reason of Christmas too…Jesus! =p
Keep warm everyone.

Love,
Vic & Pinky (Pinctor)

Nov 2013 Favs {Thanksgiving Edition}

To be honest, we haven’t got the chance to visit many places this month because we had many family events to attend.  Therefore, we would just like to share some of our photos from Pinky’s family’s Thanksgiving food spread.  Don’t worry, Victor was also there!

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Pre-cooked stuffed mushrooms | Ribs
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Smoked Salmon stuffed with Sour Cream & Caviar | Salad with bacon pieces and Parmesan cheese | Dragonfruit pieces wrapped with Prosciutto bacon
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Garlic Bread with pieces of Foie Gras | Cooked Mushrooms stuffed with crab meat and cream cheese
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Cuttlefish pasta with clam and lobster sauce | Ribs | Grilled Scallops with cream cheese | Oven-roasted Turkey
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Closer shot of the stuffed mushrooms

Pinky says:

DSCN7066It’s true that this will be the rare post where you see so much featured seafood…This was definitely the one Thanksgiving where Victor and I did not eat that much.  Also, what wasn’t photographed was the steak that we quickly ate, since it was so delicious.  I have grown up to eat steak with bearnaise sauce.  For those of you who are not familiar it is a yellowish sauce that is made out of butter, egg yolks, white wine vinegar, and herbs.  I absolutely adore eggs, so it was no surprise that I literally want to drink (eew) it.

The dragonfruit prosciutto was strange for me, Victor liked it more than I did.  I thought the fruit was too mushy and I didn’t enjoy the sweet and salty.  BlEGH.

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bearnaise sauce for steak

I actually LOVE the cuttlefish pasta (over regular pasta), but this time I couldn’t eat much of it because there was clam sauce over it.  Before we would just have the cuttlefish pasta over some nice juicy steaks…I guess my dad didn’t care that I was allergic! haha =).

Thanksgiving is never about the food (right?), but about the family and conversations you have over the dinner table.   I would say that I am grateful to have family and friends around me, food in my stomach, as well as a roof over my head everyday.

Victor says:

Lobster pieces with fresh avocado
Lobster pieces with fresh avocado

So this year, I had the pleasure of visiting Pinky’s family this year for Thanksgiving. There was so many types of food and I felt like I was at a restaurant. There was lot I didn’t eat… because it was seafood. I thought the Dragon fruit wrapped with Prosciutto rather interesting. Its salty yet sweet. It’s hard to describe dragon fruit I guess. It’s texture is like a kiwi, but it’s not as sweet. The fruit itself is actually quite beautiful.

I also got try some lamb chops. I don’t really eat lamb too often, so it was sort of a new experience for me. I felt like it had a metallic taste to it. It was interesting, it didn’t really taste like the other red meats I’ve had before.  It looked like a steak… but not really… so I guess it just confused my taste buds. Lastly, I got to eat a REAL steak. Pinky’s family bought like 20+ steaks. I’ve never seen that much steak all at once. It was cooked to medium and it was absolutely delicious. There’s nothing better than a home-cooked meal.  If you readers didn’t know, steaks are my favorite!

Yet again, Thanksgiving isn’t just about the food. It should be more about spending time with family and friends as well as being grateful for what you have.

WE also thank all of our readers and followers on this blog!  Thank you for being loyal to us and thank you for reading our random food thoughts.  We hope your Thanksgiving was great and wish you even better experiences during the holidays season!

Three apple pies Pinky JUST made! Fresh out of the oven...
Three apple pies Pinky JUST made! Fresh out of the oven…

Happy Holidays, from us to you!

Pota-topia: Pinky’s Dream Come True

DSCN7031378 6th Avenue
New York, NY

What has this world come to!?!? A restaurant that only serves potatoes as a main course?!?! You heard it right, this place only serves potatoes… in all shapes and sizes, with whatever toppings you desire. Pota-topia initially started as kiosk in Menlo Park Mall in Edison, New Jersey. After much success and popularity, the owner decided to open one up in Manhattan, New York. Definitely, a great decision because it’s hugely popular in the city too. Did I also mention that Pinky absolutely LOVES POTATOES? You can also visit their website at here!

Fun fact: Victor gave Pinky a raw potato for her 20th birthday with a candle on top…and she bit it for a perfect photo op.

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COMATOSER
Skin Chips, House Salt and Pepper, Cheddar Cheese, Asiago Cheese, Pepperjack Cheese, Green Onions, Red Onion, Garlic, Cilantro, Jalapeño, Broccoli, Bacon, Melted Cheddar, Roasted Pepper and Ranch $7.75

CURLY SUE Curly Cut, House Salt and Pepper, Pepperjack Cheese, Parmesan Cheese, Jalapeño, Garlic, Green Onion, Chipotle Ketchup and Garlic Aioli $6.50
CURLY SUE
Curly Cut, House Salt and Pepper, Pepperjack Cheese, Parmesan Cheese, Jalapeño, Garlic, Green Onion, Chipotle Ketchup and Garlic Aioli $6.50

Victor says 4/5 Fish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnail

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Quite an interesting place in my opinion. New York City never ceases to amaze me in its wide variety of wacky and  unique restaurants. This dainty little place can be found near West Village in Manhattan. This restaurant can be hidden amidst all the other stores around it, but once you see it’s signature potato logo, you know you’re heading towards the right place.

The design of Potatopia reminds a lot like the Wafels and Dinges Cafe, even though they are different in their own  ways. They use very warm colors like yellow, gray, and white, as well using wooden decor and seats. Sort of a like urban eco-design I would say. The vibe and environment is also quite similar to Wafels and Dinges. The staff are all pretty young folk, but they are also very friendly and just seem genuinely happy.

This place like a fast food take out joint, so don’t expect it to be a quiet sit-down kind of place. If it was a busy hour, I think it would be hard to find a seat.  Upon arriving through its glass doors, there is a table against the window to your left and a long wooden table towards the middle with a couple of seats. To right of the entrance are the paper menus you can grab if you don’t want to wait on line yet.

DSCN7038If you forgot a menu and already walked in, you can always looks at the large TV menus above the cashiers and potato chefs.  The TV menus are bright and vivid with one of them showing tweets from fans!

Well, I guess I should start talking about the real stuff: the food.

On their menu, they have signature dishes and the possibility of creating your very own dish.Pinky and I decided to try the signatures, The Comatoser and Curly Sue.

The Curly Sue is made up of Curly Cut fries with House Salt and Pepper, Pepperjack Cheese, Parmesan Cheese, Jalapeño, Garlic, Green Onion, Chipotle Ketchup and Garlic Aioli. Sounds like a mouthful, eh? Out of the two dishes we got, I actually really enjoyed this one more. I’m a big fan of curly fries and I just felt that all the ingredients went together wonderfully well. A big part of this were the interesting sauces. You don’t see Chipotle Ketchup or Garlic Aioli on fries normally, it made it so savory. The fries were absolutely crunchy and the scallions were a nice addition. I do feel that it was a little bit too much scallion, but that’s okay. Overall, I really enjoyed this signature dish and you should try it out too!

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Comatoser skin chip

The Comatoser is composed of Skin Chips with  House Salt and Pepper, Cheddar Cheese, Asiago Cheese, Pepperjack Cheese, Green Onions, Red Onion, Garlic, Cilantro, Jalapeño, Broccoli, Bacon, Melted Cheddar, Roasted Pepper and Ranch. A little pricier than the Curly Sue, but it also contains more stuff too! As you know, I’m a big fan of quality, not quantity. To me, the flavors just didn’t really stand out to me.  I’m not saying it’s awful or anything, I just liked the Curly Sue much more. It’s pretty much the suped-up version of a Wendy’s Broccoli, Bacon, and Cheese potato.

Overall, this place is pretty good, so check this place out. It’s not too relatively expensive with dishes ranging from $7-$10. If you’re daring and want to make your own special potato, go ahead, you potato connoisseur. If you don’t like potatoes at all, maybe this place will change your mind.

Pinky says 4.5/5 16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg2 coffee

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How can someone go wrong with a restaurant that serves so many different kinds of potatoes?!  I loved the COMATOSER better than the CURLY SUE.  I would have to disagree with Vic on his comment that it tastes like a glorified baked potato.  I felt that that texture of the skin chips was so unique and awesome.  The inside of the “chip” tasted like a mashed potato and the outside tasted like a potato oven-roasted chip.  I really want to learn how to achieve that texture with my potatoes at home!  (If someone knows the secret…please share!!!!!)  I loved the delicious veggies, scallion, red onion, broccoli.  Oh my, the sauce was even more delicious — I literally wanted to lick the whole bowl.  The bacon was so savory too.  THE CHEESE. THE CHEESE. Dang those cheese combos caressed my taste buds in a velvety dance!

The Curly Sue I felt that you can just have this texture in regular fries, but I did loved the combination of flavors — the chipotle ketchup seriously how can you go wrong?  I don’t think I ever had fries with scallions.  Level up from regular fast food fries!  However, I just wish there was more of it…and to it.  I could easily make this one — now that they listed all the ingredients!

Okay, Pinky of course you’re giving such a high score for a potato restaurant, but why the half point off? Honestly, the prices were pretty steep.  I get it that it’s in Manhattan but this was more like a snack than dinner.  Don’t assume you’ll be full after this “meal”!  It’s a horrible habit to develop, but if it was cheaper I would come every single day. (I’m a poor recent graduate!!) And get fat, of course.  There is so much cheese in the signature meals!!!!  These sig meals would be cheaper than the “build your own potato” meals.

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October 2013 Favorites

ImageHey everyone! October was such a busy month for both of us.  We had a lot of adventures that did not always involve eating good food, but some days involved things greater than ourselves.

We had a month full of celebrations (for my two birthdays; my real birthday and my Baptism, hoo-hah! and thank you Vic for being a big part on both days — and also have you noticed so many people’s birthdays are in October?!) !

1) Run River North

It was also the month when the Price of Life ’13 was happening.  The issue of human trafficking has been an evolving social injustice within Victor’s and my hearts.  Being that we both are followers of Jesus and InterVarsity alumni, we wanted to explore more on how to put our efforts in ending human trafficking (labor slavery and sex slavery).

There are 27 million slaves in the world today.  To learn more about human trafficking, you can visit this infographic.

DSCN6447That night we also got the chance to see the art work of our friend Maria (which is…not an ordinary lamp — photo shown on side)– as well as listen to our new favorite band Run River North.

We even got so crazy about them that we went to their show the week after we saw them first.  Their music definitely has a unique tambre, as well as touches emotions of their listeners, whether it is to fire them up or paint a peaceful atmosphere around them.  Their harmonies gave me such goosebumps!!!  Take a listen.

It was such an awesome night! Human trafficking is REAL and it happens in our very own city.  Make sure you follow Price of Life events and together we can put an end to human trafficking.  Everyone has a life purpose and no one should be not allowed to live the life that God has created for them.  Shout-out to our friends Eric, Sam, and Christine for being there also!

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2) Film Biz Recycling

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540 President St
Basement
(between 3rd Ave & 4th Ave)
Brooklyn, NY 11215

A place like none other. On one of the days we were thrift store shopping, we ran into this unique gem in Gowanus, Brooklyn.

You won’t find this place easily.. it’s sorta hidden on the side of a building next to a parking lot.  Don’t worry though, there will be signage to guide you along your way.  You’ll have to buzz in at the gate first though!

Unlike your conventional thrift store, this place rents out movie props for you to use. Anything you can imagine, these guys might have. You’ll find all sorts of wigs, gadgets, props, decorations, and devices to fulfill your inner Spielberg.

Aside from all the cool movie stuff you can rent, they also sell a bunch of furniture and a lot things you wouldn’t normally find. They have a lot of old electronics for sale that range from the 70’s through 90’s. I’m not sure if they even work at all, but it’s still pretty cool — use them to film your own movies!!!

The staff here are super friendly and would love to help in anyway they can. Be sure to stop by here!  They even just give out office supplies (for some reason) based on a “whatever you can pay” transaction method.

3) Center for Architecture: New York

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The Center for Architecture
536 LaGuardia Place
NY, NY 10012

This place was pretty awesome, even though it was small — Right now they are featuring a lot of beautiful buildings and scapes that are in Asian countries.  They also had a lot of explanations in the text descriptions of each “artwork” to discuss why these buildings were made like how they are.  They also feature time lapse videos of some of my favorite cities in Asia.  I can probably sit there all day to watch them repeat on and on.  Museum is completely free and ..surprisingly empty.  Although you might not spend much time here because of its size, I still think it’s a great feeling to appreciate these huge buildings people take so much time and spend so much money to create!  Amazing!

Funny side note: If you end up visiting this place — please make a stop at the Earth Room.  Please.  You’ll know what I mean hahahhaha..

141 Wooster St
(between Prince St & Houston St)
New York, NY 10012

Happy late Halloween.

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El Nuevo Portal

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Greetings, everyone! Apologies for not posting for a long while!  So far, October has been a fully packed month. Stay tuned for an update about our month…meanwhile, enjoy this post about El Nuevo Portal!

217 Smith Street
Brooklyn, NY 11231

Menu here

It’s not always that Victor and I explore around Brooklyn, but we wanted to check this small friendly restaurant called El Nuevo Portal.  It was one of our stops while we were visiting some local thrift shops and small boutiques.

El Nuevo serves some authentic looking Latin food at an affordable price and served with smiles!  You can see the interior design of this place, on Google Maps (Strange first experience for Victor and I).  Nothing spectacular to speak about the design since this should be for a quick casual lunch and less fancy dinner option.

Once you enter, you can simply take a seat if you see an open table.  You do not have to order at the front, unless of course, you are ordering for take-out.  They are pretty laid-back about everything here!   Restroom was near the back, right next to the old jukebox of old music..The place was not sparkly clean, but decent enough!

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Breaded Beef Steak Sandwich $4.00
Rice with Chicken $8.00
Rice with Chicken $8.00

 

Victor says 4/5 Fish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnail

DSCN6306This restaurant is located in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn, and it’s a little over a mile walk from the Brooklyn Bridge.

We don’t always go out to the most beautiful and lavishly decorated restaurants, but that’s okay. As long as the food is good, I’m all set! So, on our latest adventure, we stopped El Nueva Portal (which translates to “The New Portal”). It was definitely a portal of food to my stomach.

Upon coming here, it may seem rather hectic, dependent on what time it is. We arrived just as lunch hour was coming to an end. We could still see people coming in and out, as we were seated and waiting for our food.

The menu has a large variety of food, ranging from sandwiches to tapas, rices dishes to stews. You should expect to have trouble selecting something when you come here.

I ordered Breaded Steak Sandwich and Pinky ordered Rice with Chicken, along with a complimentary basket of warm and crispy bread.  The breaded steak sandwich wasn’t dry at all and was very juicy. This sandwich is composed of a breaded piece of steak with lettuce and tomatoes sandwiched between crispy thin hero bread. For $4 dollars, it’s a tasty snack you grab on the go.

Pinky and I almost always get some sort of chicken and rice dish at any Spanish/ Latin American we go to. Different from the previous Latin restaurants we’ve been to, the chicken is actually mixed within the rice, whereas the previous restaurants put a piece of chicken on top. Regardless of how the chicken implemented into the dish, it still tasted excellent at El Neuvo Portal. They were very generous with their portions and this dish can easily feed two hungry people. The rice was very rich and buttery and there was actually a lot of chicken.

This place can get very busy at times, but it’s worth coming if you’re on a budget and if you’re hungry, even if it isn’t the nicest looking place.

Pinky says 4/5 16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg

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This restaurant was delicious!  First off, I would have to say that the staff were very hard-working.  Although there were more customers than the staff could seem to handle during the lunch rush, they still pulled it off with a smile.  Kudos to you, El Nuevo.  Because of that, there were not enough free tables that were clean, but our waitress apologized before we even had any thought of complaining.

I looked at the place and I wasn’t expecting fancy decor, but expected family-oriented atmosphere and completely received that vibe.  The portions were huge and hot off the fire.

The bread that the waitress gave us was fresh out of the oven it seemed, with lots of butter flavor.  More importantly, it was not soggy, but crisp to the bite.  Yummy!

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My Rice with Chicken arrived and was completely overwhelmed by the mountain I had on my plate.  My first thought, “Oh I cannot finish this”, and it was a true statement… The chicken was tender and I loved the onions.  I realized that it was listed on the menu as “Rice with Chicken” insinuating that there was definitely going to be more rice than chicken.  However, I was still not disappointed!  Hot and FRESH.

I enjoyed the breaded beef steak!  It was a nice new texture to explore on sandwiches.  At the end of our meal, I took a portion of the rice and a small bite of the sandwich,home, so I could eat it the next day.  Even still, the flavor kept and was equally nice to my taste buds.

When Victor and I left, I was peering over to our neighbor’s meal at the next table.  Dang, he ordered some kind of stew.  It smelled so good and we could tell that he was a regular there.  Next time, we shall try that!

MORE SHOTS

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Souvlaki GR …and Pinky’s Worst Nightmare

DSCN6164116 Stanton St
(between Ludlow St & Essex St)

Menu and Prices

This nicely decorated place was very intriguing to me (Pinky) — I was won over by their whole Greek-inspired decor, at first sight.  On the side once you enter, they have the latest magazines hung on a wire, as well as some snacks from Greece (I am assuming).

DSCN6166OKAY, an important note: BEWARE when you sit down at a small circular table.  Victor almost destroyed the restaurant because the tables are so badly designed.  The legs of the table STICK out, so when you put your own legs under the table, you will most likely hit it and therefore attempt to turn the table (and glassware) on its side…Seriously, be careful — it happened three other times to other people and that all during our visit.

So what is a gyro anyway? How do you even pronounce it? “EURO” should be a close enough pronunciation guide.  As we all know how Wikipedia is entirely legit, here is how they define it:

gyro (/ˈjɪəroʊ/yeer-oh,/ˈʒɪəroʊ/zheer-oh;[1]Greek: γύρος, [ˈʝiros], lit. ‘turn’) is a Greek dish of meat roasted on a vertical spit. It is commonly served in a sandwich with tomato, onion, and tzatziki sauce, wrapped in pita or sandwich bread.

I also learned from Wikipedia and Souvlaki GR that sometimes they add fries to your gyro…strange!

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Souvlakia Kalamaki Paketo– Your choice of six Chicken or Pork skewers with Tzatziki & Pita … $14 (Individual skewers … $2.75 each)

Victor says 2.5/5 Fish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnail2 fish

DSCN6176Save your money and go else where.

Souvlaki GR isn’t that good and you can definitely find better Greek food around. This place can be a tourist trap with the bright lights and nicely painted walls, but don’t fall for it! It’s quite expensive for the portion you get and it just tastes… okay.

By first impressions, this place looks sorta nice. They got these dangling lightbulbs in front their restaurant. We also saw their food truck across the street. The decor inside was nicely painted. It had a very Mediterranean feel with the white and blue colors with fake doors and windows. There’s also one table that’s elevated from everyone else. Honestly, I think that’s just silly because the stairs take up space to get to that one table. The restaurant itself is not very spacious either as noted from my close call of destroying the tableware.

SGR Pita Souvlaki -- (Tomato, red onions, fries & Tyrokafteri-spicy feta dip) pictured with pork $6.50
SGR Pita Souvlaki — (Tomato, red onions, fries & Tyrokafteri-spicy feta dip) pictured with pork $6.50

Time to talk food. First off, it’s expensive for something that’s not very spectacular. We ordered a chicken and pork skewer. The chicken tasted a bit raw. It wasn’t seasoned very well and it just didn’t appeal to me. The pork one tasted a little better and had more seasoning. It also came with a cup of tzatziki sauce with slices of pita bread. Majority of the time, I found myself spreading the tzatziki sauce to make it taste better.

The SGR Pita Souvlaki I ordered was basically a pork skewer gyro. It’s the same amount of meat as the skewer wrapped with two french fries, tomatoes, red onions, Tyrokafteri (spicy feta dip) in a pita.  It’s such a small portion and I feel like you can get more for your buck at other places. Maybe I’ve been spoiled by other Greek restaurants, but this place didn’t live up to it’s hype.

Probably won’t be coming here any time in the near future.

Bifteki Pita Traditional Greek Burger -- Tomato, red onion, feta & tzatziki ... 6
Bifteki Pita — Traditional Greek Burger — Tomato, red onion, feta & tzatziki … 6

Pinky says 2/5 16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg

DSCN6177Okay here goes..scroll back up to that picture above for a minute.

Carefully inspect the picture..and come back after.

Alright…


There is a piece of hair nicely tucked into the warm pita bread near the top-left side of it.  Delicious, right? No, that was not listed on the menu as an ingredient.  I was so appalled by the little new friend peering at me.  Thank you Jesus, that I did not bite it on that side, but bit the right side.  I did not even notice it at first, while I was taking the picture.  By the way, we apologize for the blurry dark pictures — bad lighting in there.

However, what…kind…of… hair, do you ask? Beard hair.  Not even head hair, which I don’t think I would mind as much?  I’m not sure, what do you all think? What’s worse: Beard or head hair in your food?

I have to say that the manager was alright with my complaint and gave me a new gyro, but they probably did spit in my food. Hahaha.  I should have actually cancelled the order because it wasn’t even worth the $6. I thought it would taste completely amazing, but it was just normal gyro that I can get from a food cart, and possibly those food cart ones would be bigger and more filling.   The only special thing was that it had massive amounts of feta cheese.  BLEGH, which only made it extremely salty.  I only asked for it to be re-made because we were already so hungry.  While eating it, I kept imagining that I had a hairball stuck in my throat.  I’m not even sure why we waited longer compared to the other people around us, despite the fact that we sat down first.

DSCN6168On the topic of seating, I was sitting right next to an ACTIVE doorway, with the employees coming in and out.  During the whole night I was scared to move an inch because it can result in total chaos.  I could not move my arms or I can hit a waiter holding food and could not move my legs or I can flip the table and all of its contents over.  For me, I get stressed easily in social situations, so you can already tell I was not having a grand ol’ time.  Being that I watched the documentary film, Objectified, there is seriously no reason for a chair to be uncomfortable…and there should definitely be no reason why a table should be unstable.  I understand those tables are cute, but if I am eating a legit meal and not having a tea or coffee break, I would like to have my table to hold more than three small plates.  It was pretty hilarious to knock the table over then see others do the same though.

DSCN6170And being the silly girl that I am, I was not aware that there can be fries put inside a gyro.  When it said “fries” on the menu, I thought it would be on the side, and being the big potato girl I am, I was so excited.  Then I fell into deep depression, as I only saw two fries sticking out of it.  The more entertaining fact was that since both of Vic’s and my gyro were plated on one plate, I thought both of them were one order.

The skewers were also nothing special — I can’t believe they were $2.25 each. I can grill them myself, thank you very much — there was no real flavor to it.

I miss Akropolis

MORE SHOTS

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Kimganae Korean Restaurant – Korean Sushi!?!?

DSCN58893912 Union Street
Flushing, NY 11354

Menu and Prices

In Flushing, you will find a variety of Asian restaurants – Vietnamese, Chinese, Korean, and maybe even Japanese. We went to check out Kim Ga Nae Korean Restaurant located in Downtown to get some Kimbap.

Now what exactly is Kimbap/ Gimbap? In a sense… it’s sushi but with different distinctive elements. It’s made with steamed white rice (bap) and various other ingredients, rolled in seaweed (kim/gim). Here’s something interesting I learned from wikipedia about kimbap:

Gimbap is derived from Japanese futomaki (Makizushi) during the Japanese rule (1910-1945). but now has certain distinctive elements not found in Japanese-style makizushi. Whereas the essence of Japanese sushi is vinegared rice, gimbap does not use rice vinegar but rather sesame oil.

Little note: It may be difficult to find parking around here 😛 and it is a cash only restaurant!

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57. Don Katsu Roll rice, seaweed, salt, sesame oil, pork cutlet, carrot, egg, sweet radish, spinach, gourd strip, teriyaki sauce $5.00

Pinky says 4.5/5 16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg2 coffee

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I will have to start off that I am completely biased for this place because I’ve been here numerous times.  The food is always fresh and always comes really quickly.  The kimbap is so cheap and the wait staff are incredibly nice.  They always let my party and I stay more than the normal duration… Usually I don’t stay on purpose, but there was no pressure to quickly eat and leave.  It always feels like I’m visiting someone’s house when I visit here.

When I catch up with friends and want to only spend the minimal for a quick lunch, I just come here! They even let you refill for the complementary miso soup and kimchi!

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I usually have the spicy tuna roll, but since Victor doesn’t eat fish, this time I ordered the Don Katsu Roll.  If you haven’t had Katsu before, it’s kind of a fried pork chop!  It was pretty tasty and very filling.  So filling for only $5! The teriyaki sauce was a nice touch and the meat pieces weren’t overwhelmingly huge for the size of the roll.  The spicy tuna roll is even cheaper, being $4.50! I enjoy their freshness and fragrance of the sesame oil.

Other than the rolls, I’ve had the curry rice with pork cutlet (the curry donkatsu) and spicy bulgoki dupbap (beef with rice and vegetables) during my other visits.  They are all normally cooked fresh, but even better is that the portions are pretty HUGE! Good for your money.  There will never be a last time that I visit here!  (Unless I move away from NYC…hehe)

59. Spicy Beef Roll* rice, seaweed, salt, sesame oil, beef, carrot, egg, sweet radish, spinach, gourd strip, hot sauce $5.00
59. Spicy Beef Roll* rice, seaweed, salt, sesame oil, beef, carrot, egg, sweet radish, spinach, gourd strip, hot sauce $5.00

Victor says: 4/5Fish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnail

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Kimbap is definitely  a first for me. When my mom use to make sushi at home, she would use to make a separate roll with dried shredded pork. I suppose, I guess that’s similar enough to kimbap.

Even though it’s an decent sized restaurant, you may have wait half an hour just to get seated. Another option is taking it to go. As noted before, it’s also difficult to find parking around here, so good luck!

So this is my first time I had real kimbap.. and it’s pretty good. For about $5, you can fill yourself on these rolls are densely packed. I ordered the spicy beef roll and it was quite delicious. You’d be surprise how full you can just eat from eating a single roll. It’s sorta sweet from the vegetables and also flavorful from the beef. I would definitely like to try out their rice dishes if I do come here again.

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The waiter we had was incredibly kind. We were actually waiting to meet up with some other people, but they weren’t able to find parking. The waiter didn’t ask us to get up and move or even rush us. He accommodated to us the whole time while we were eating.  If I do come again, I’d actually like to sit and try to enjoy my food as I eat. I was eating quickly because I felt bad taking two extra seats in the restaurant.

Overall, this is a nice place with a home-y feel to it.  Staff is great. Food is great. Check it out if you’re in Flushing and if you want something else than Korean BBQ, Sushi, or Dim Sum.

Caffeine Fix: Giving Up Taste for Presentation?

caffeine fix

149-40 41st Ave
Flushing, NY 11355

Menu and Prices

This dainty little cafe has been a craze in Pinky’s circle of friends…and even on our dear friend, Yelp.  However, does it really live up to the hype or are we setting ourselves up for disappointment?

Victor and I — along with our previously featured friends, go in to discover for ourselves. We basically ordered different things to try out most of their menu.  They offer things from the various waffles, ice creams, honey toast, hot drinks, virgin mojito (Pinky was veeery skeptical of whether or not that would taste remotely good), and your assorted frappe flavors.

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Very Berry Belgian Waffle with 1 scoop ice cream. strawberries, blueberries, bananas, chocolate syrup or nutella $11.95

Victor says 3/5 Fish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnail

DSCN5896When Pinky said we were going to Caffeine Fix… I assumed we going to some just going to some random coffee shop. Well.. it is some random coffee shop.. named Caffeine Fix 😛

I’m no coffee shop expert or whatever, but this place is pretty nice. The decor is very modern and the cashier was kind. Has a lot of “wooden” decor features, which I’ve been noticing a lot in restaurants and cafes lately.

So I ordered a virgin raspberry mojito. A pretty weird thing to order from a coffee shop, but I wasn’t looking to get my caffeine fix that day. The virgin raspberry mojito is very very sweet, but minty too. It will probably be too sweet for your average person, but I do have sweet tooth. It could have been nice with half the sweetness, but they also put a lot ice, which diluted it a lot later on.  It was about $4.50 for a medium sized drink.

Raspberry Mojito Sm $3.75 / Med $4.35 / XL $5.15 (Pictured Medium) Green Tea Latte Sm 3.95/ Med 4.55/ Lg 4.95 (Pictured Medium)
Raspberry Mojito Sm $3.75 / Med $4.35 / XL $5.15 (Pictured Medium)
Green Tea Latte Sm 3.95/ Med 4.55/ Lg 4.95 (Pictured Medium)

I also tried Pinky’s green tea latte. It was weird but okay. Their hot drinks are really… like REALLY hot when you first get it.  I burned the tip of my tongue taking a sip out of her drink. Pinky will go in more dept of what she thought of that drink. I couldn’t really taste it too much.

We ordered a very berry belgian waffle ($12) which can serve 2-4 people. The presentation of this dish is beautifully done and its like art. The waffle itself is just okay. I personally think Wafels and Dinges is still so much more better. The chocolate syrup on this very light, so you don’t get a whole lot of chocolate taste. You do however get a bunch of fruits: blueberries, strawberries, and banana slices! On top of everything, you get a big scoop of your choice of ice cream.

Overall… things are bit expensive here, but I suppose its aesthetically nice here. Not something to go out of my way for.

Pinky says 2.5/5 16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg2 coffee

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I’m not even sure why this place has such a high rating on Yelp.
First of all, okay I give points for decor, but the seats weren’t even comfortable.  Mary and I were sitting on the bench seats because everyone else took the comfortable (?) sofa seats.  They obviously don’t want you sitting there long!

The prices are way too expensive based on the quality they serve. I get the whole logo cuteness, and presentation I give an A+, however the quality has to step up its game, BIG TIME.
My green tea latte tasted like edamame (soy bean) milk.  I have no idea why, but BLEGH. Even the green tea latte from Paris Baguette is a lot better.  Not to mention it took me forever to even get to the liquid part because there was 3+ inches of FOAM in my medium sized drink.  I mean I LOVE foam, but if it takes up more than the entire top of my cup, I’m already wanting my money back.

The waffles…you might call me crazy because you see all these beautifully crafted dessert places, but seriously I’d rather have an ugly looking dessert and have it taste AMAZING, than have a beautiful dessert tasting like nothing…I’ll admit the fruit is fresh and the ice cream okay.  It is NO waffels and dinges though, I’ve been spoiled, I guess. Later, we found a fruit fly in the waffle…not sure if it was there all along though! Juuusst saying…hahha.

I was very skeptical that the virgin mojito would taste good, but Victor being the daredevil he is.. lol ordered it.  The “virgin mojito” tasted like those sour patch kids candy except the flavors happen in reverse.  It is suuuper sweet then suuupper sour with the after-taste…blegh.

I was tricked by their cute marketing tactics and the pictures!!!! No.  Don’t make my mistake.

Press 195: Are they REALLY “Sandwich Kings”?

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22 N Park Ave
Rockville Centre, NY 11570

This gorgeously decorated restaurant is a local favorite to Rockville Centre, NY.  They serve good selection of beers and has a full bar…as well as a wide variety of pressed sandwiches (hot or cold), fries, soups, burgers, knishes, and salads!

They even do free local delivery from Monday – Sunday 11:30am to 9:30pm.  If you’re in the area…you know to call 516-536-1950.

You cannot miss this place with the nicely designed sign “PRESS 195” and the floor to ceiling glass, where you can peer into the full-bar area.

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They also offer Lunch Specials from Monday -Friday 11am – 3pm for half a sandwich/salad AND Belgian fries/house salad/soup of the day FOR ONLY $10!!!

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#43: Crispy Panko breaded chicken cutlet, grilled pineapple, Canadian bacon, Monterey Jack and Press 195’s famous chipotle sauce $10.00

Victor says 4.25Fish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnail3fish

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These sandwiches are delicious and savory.

Press 195 is an interesting, yet beautiful restaurant. It has warm colors and has a lot of windows for allow natural light. It’s aesthetically pleasing and this place is just nice to be in. The waitress we had was very nice, but she didn’t ask if we ever wanted refills or any napkins.

Now onto the food and drinks!

I ordered a root beer float. Pinky wanted an alcoholic drink, but sadly… it was happy hours… but not where we sat. The root beer float was okay. I’m pretty sure I could have made it myself. It was just 2 scoops of ice cream with Saranac Root Beer. Still… I really enjoy drinks from Saranac.

Repeating what I said earlier, the sandwiches are delicious and savory. I ordered a Hot Press sandwich #43. It contains Crispy Panko breaded chicken cutlet, grilled pineapple, Canadian bacon, Monterey Jack cheese, and Press 195’s famous chipotle sauce sandwiched in between 2 slices of crispy Ciabatta bread.

Yeah, yeah, yeah… it sounds like something you may have had before, BUT ITS NOT. Its pretty freaking good…. and savory. I ordered the 1/2 Hot press sandwich with belgian fries lunch combo fo $10. If I could change something that day about the dining options, I would have just bought a whole sandwich without fries. It’s not that the fries were bad… it’s just that sandwich was so good. Remember… it’s quality over quantity!

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Getting back to the sandwich… Sandwich #43 just melted in my mouth. The flavors complimented each other well. It was sweet and also a bit spicy. The chicken wasn’t too dry and you can taste the seasoning on it. I loved every bite of this sandwich. I think what makes this place so good is their delicious ciabatta bread. It is so crunchy and that it doesn’t seem like ciabatta bread. Its like an English toast muffin with that crisp. It’s unique and I would love to eat these sandwiches again in the near future.

Definitely go check it out! Not very expensive and it’s quite good too!

#38: Grilled sliced steak, avocado, sweet onion jam, fresh Mozzarella and creamy roasted pepper dressing (Originally $11.00 for full; however as shown 1/2 sandwich with Belgian fries $10.00)
#38: Grilled sliced steak, avocado, sweet onion jam, fresh Mozzarella and creamy roasted pepper dressing (Originally $11.00 for full; however as shown 1/2 sandwich with Belgian fries $10.00)

Pinky says 4.5 16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg2 coffee

DSCN5576This place is so amazing.  I just wish it was a lot closer for me…Even though they have a second location in Bayside (I hate riding the bus) I can’t even head out there.  I was first impressed by their front door and all the mirrors and shiny decorated walls.  It has a lot of natural light and can be seen as very trendy and modern.

I was really excited to go to this place because of all the good ratings on Yelp.  Yes, they are indeed true! I want to come back here often, as they have soo many sandwiches to try.  I actually had one in mind, then the waitress came and asked me what I wanted.  I answered, but in actuality I later realized I forgot my first choice and ordered a random one, #38.

The steak was so tender!! I’ve never had onion jam — It was delightful, however I still would like more physical pieces of onion, not just them mushed together.  It still worked really well with the avocado though.  THE BREAD was the most fantastic thing on earth.  Cripsy, crunchy, and most important delicious.

I initially wanted the #29, Grilled marinated sliced steak, tomato, Provolone cheese, onions and homemade Chimichurri sauce.  That is definitely on my first choice, once I step into this place again.

AND CAN YOU EVEN BELIEVE?! $10 lunch special with BELGIAN FRIES?! AND THAT MANY?! I almost fainted.  You loyal readers know I’m a sucker for fries.  They were hot to touch and fresh to taste.  There were some burnt ones on my plate though..I was a bit bummed out that they charge more for their Chipotle dipping sauce.  Good thing I got a taste from Victor’s sandwich.  Mwahah. Again, to die for.

Note: My half star off was because I was bummed that they don’t offer the same happy hour price for their alcoholic drinks if you sit in the dining area.  You have to be sitting at the bar if you want those prices.  BIG BUMMER.

Other than that, this place…..heavenly.

Extra shots.

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August Favorites!

Hey there peeps!

We are going to start a new thing on our WordPress called August Favorites.  This can be ranging from food products or even simply our month highlights.  This is going to be our first monthly posts of  our favorite things!!!

In our previous post, we had a little guessing game of what our new favorite is…whoever guessed it, here it is!

Pinky loveeessss it...maybe a little too much.
Pinky loveeessss it…maybe a little too much.

Trader Joe’s Mediterranean Greek Yogurt Dip: Made with Feta Cheese and Zaatar Spice — Tangy kick addition to any of your favorite dippable foods!

Although we added it to some salami, cheese, and cracker, this dip was already made out of cheese.. (Pinky missed the cheese part of the label and bought extra brie cheese — not that tasty that’s why it wasn’t featured) you can probably add it to a sandwich gyro or eat with some veggie sticks!! Yumm-oh.

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We tried it on these Multi-grain Crackers also from Trader Joe’s. First recommended by our dear friend Becky!!!

cheers

Trader Joe’s Sparkling Pomegranate Flavored Juice Beverage

Texture of soda, but also juice! Adds a bit of class to your party or gathering if you walk in bringing this bottle!  Non-alcoholic, so we brought it to the beach!! AND drank it out of the bottle…how much more classier can you get? Cheers, everyone!

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Also our final favorite of this month, (No, Trader Joe’s is not paying us to post this, although they should cough*) Trader Joe’s Milk Chocolate covered Raisins. Pinky is ADDICTED to these things.  They’re sweet and just so perfect when you want a boost to your day.

 

Happy Labor Day Weekend!!! The matching green was unintentional -- how corny.
Happy Labor Day Weekend!!! The matching green was unintentional — how corny.

All these items can be found in your local Trader Joe’s and as you can see, we brought these most of these things to the beach to have a romantic (poorly planned, but still awesome) picnic!!!

I hope everyone can still enjoy these items, even though Summer season is coming to a close…HAPPY LABOR DAY WEEKEND by the way!

As always you can let us know YOUR recommendations of restaurants or food products at our email at pinctoradventures@gmail.com.  Please feel free to send us anything!

Stay tuned for more monthly favorites as the Fall months start rolling by! (Pinky LOVES FALL!!!!)

 

We had some fun with the seagulls…

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A Real Shanghai Mong (Dream)

DSCN533830 W 32nd St
New York, NY 10001

This popular restaurant in the heart of NYC’s Korea Town features many Chinese and Korean fusion dishes.  That is why you might be confused with all the red in their decor, hey — are they Chinese or Korean? Doesn’t matter! Just enjoy the combination of delicious food from different cultures that come together in this place.

Might be pretty pricey for dinner, but you may be paying more for their fancier menus, service, and decor.  For lunch, this place is pretty affordable with a dollar off regular prices and with the same serving size (or might even be more?) than the dinner serving size of the dish.  Either way, you always leave full and satisfied! Here is the menu.

A Chinese/Korean fusion dish called, Jajangmyeon (자장면) is quite popular here.  It is a noodle dish that is covered in thick sauce made from black soybean paste.  Here they also add pork and veggies.  Okay, it might not sound or look appetizing, but…

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Mini Bites Fried Dumpling with Lemon Cream (10 piece $8.99)
Jja Jang Mmyun “자장면” $8.99 Noodles with pork and vegetables in black bean sauce
Jja Jang Mmyun “자장면” $8.99
Noodles with pork and vegetables in black bean sauce

Pinky says 5/516-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg16-coffee-cup-icons-square-brown-lg

DSCN5345I might be a bit bias since I have been coming to this place countless times ever since I discovered it back in 2011 or so.  I still have not had Jajangmyeon better than how this place makes it though!! Someone please prove me wrong and show me the best one you’ve ever had, seriously.  When you order this, the waiter/waitress asks you if you need them to cut it because the noodles are too long.  Should say yes, if you don’t want a face filled with delicious black bean sauce afterwards…

Not sure if you all know the story, but in Korea they have something called “Singles Day” or “Black Day” (for the sauce) where they eat Jajangmyeon by themselves in a restaurant.  And of course if you’re eating it by yourself, there might be someone else in the restaurant eating by himself or herself too.  Then…what happens? Match-made in heaven lol.  I used to eat this a lot more..when I was single =P But lo and behold, I did not meet Victor over a romantic evening of Jajangmyeon…bummer.

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Anyway, there is really something different about their noodles here — thicker? So it catches more of the sauce as you slurp it? Perhaps…or maybe it’s their perfectly cooked pork bits that remind you of the crispy American bacon?  Not really sure, but I do know that this stuff is ADDICTING.  I would dream about this bowl of heaven, no joke.

Our friend ordered an appetizer (I haven’t tried an appetizer here in a long time), the lemon cream dumplings.  It was a pleasant experience to have a sweet dessert-like dumpling, but after a while it got soggy.  I don’t think I would order it again…Be sure to eat those as soon as the plate hits your table, our you’re just going to eat a big mushy sweet and salty blob.

Also, if you eat seafood (I sometimes eat it when I think it’s worth having a mild allergic reaction to) you should try the also delicious 1/2 seafood Jjamppong (a seafood spicy noodle stew) and 1/2 Jajangmyun dish.  Get two dishes for the price of one!

Victor says 4/5 Fish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnailFish Toys icon thumbnail

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Jajangmyun is good. I like it, but not as much as Pinky does.  This was my first time here.

This place does make the best Jajangmyun I tried so far, so you should check it out. I ordered the spicier version and it’s a dollar more than the normal one.  To me, it wasn’t that spicy, but it still has a little kick to it.  The chunks of meat are pretty big compared to other places I have been. I guess it’s pretty good.

However, I really really liked the appetizer. I have a knack for trying strange and unique things (except for seafood related things). Lemon Cream Dumpling? Now thats just genius. Like Pinky said… it’s a sorta like a dessert and it should savored right away. Its just that they served the food really fast the day we went and got our meal like 3 minutes after we got the dumplings.  It has a unique flavor and I really enjoyed it.  Very sweet and savory.

You should check this place out! The atmosphere is nice, but the modern day radio music sorta throws off the mood.  Expect spend anywhere from $10 -15 for a meal! I’d probably be coming again in the future…. because of Pinky. hahaha

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1/2 seafood Jjamppong (a seafood spicy noodle stew) and 1/2 Jajangmyun — Photo by Dave
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Chicken Noodle Soup $10.99 Noodle soup with chicken breast and vegetables in chicken broth –Photo by Dave

Our new friend, Vicki ordered the Chicken Noodle Soup and was shocked by the massive portion of it.  She did find a piece of hair in it though…the forever mystery of whose hair is it?

Dave ordered the 1/2 jjampong and 1/2 jajangmyun and said that the seafood part was spicy! He also thought it was pretty filling.

However, in the words of Dave:

Good friends > Good food

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Thanks for the treat, Dave!

Love,

Victor and Pinky