City Bites

//City Bites

The best City Bites from New York

Churrascaria Plataforma, Theatre District, NYC + Desperate Measures

Desperate  Measures, the musical-comedy western loosely based on Shakespear's Measure for Measure, recently moved from the York Theatre across town to the New World Stages after what I heard was its three-time extended sold-out run. I went to see this show again, one that my friend Bill Castellino directed and choreographed and I enjoyed it as much the second time! Pure fun! After the performance, I went with Bill and some of his friends (including actress Gayle Turner) across the street to Churrascaria Plataforma, a Brazilian steakhouse for a drink and nibble. Such a friendly place, I do recommend for drinks after theatre and heard that that is what it's [...]

By |2018-09-15T15:31:41+00:00September 15th, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|0 Comments

Manhattan’s Only Distillery – Our/New York and Bar

I recently joined Untapped Cities, as some friends and I wanted to do one of their events. We figured for $10 a month, we'd try it out. Through them, I attended a tour and vodka tasting at Our/New York, which opened in May. This small-batch, micro-distillery Manhattan’s first since Prohibition. It is part of Pernod Ricard, the French-based wine and spirits company. Before the tour, we tried their too sweet for me Excelsior '64 cocktail made from their vodka, lavender, elderflower and sparkling wine. I was happier with the straight vodka we tried after learning how it was made. OUR/New York is not only a distillery, it's also a bar [...]

By |2018-08-13T17:52:11+00:00September 13th, 2018|City Bites, Food & Drinks|0 Comments

Spring Natural Kitchen, Upper West Side, NYC + Twelfth Night

After picking up our tickets to see the musical version of Twelve Night at Shakespeare in the Park, we headed west to find a place to grab a bite. Wanting only a nibble on this very hot evening, we decided to share the guacamole ($13), which was flavorful but served with a plethora of stale colored chips. With that, I sampled their happy hour Upper West Side Manhattan ($7),  nicely done. As our main, we shared the quite small chopped salad ($17) that looks better in the photo than it was: all the "chopped" items are sprinkled on top. The menu described it as mesclun, romaine, shredded kale, roasted corn, [...]

By |2018-08-12T15:46:53+00:00September 11th, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|0 Comments

Tagine, Hells Kitchen, NYC + Mary Page Marlowe

On our way to see the Mary Page Marlow at The Tony Kiser Theater, we stopped into the dark Moroccan restaurant Tagine, as it was one of the nearby restaurants offering a discount with our subscription.  Six women play the main character of Tracy Letts’ play at different times of Mary Page Marlow's life from infancy to her golden years. For a complete review of the show, click here. Before ordering, we asked to sample the two wines by the glass that also came by the bottle to decide what to order. We opted for only a glass of the Carta Sauvignon Blanc ($12/glass), which is not worth trying. Seeing Mary Page [...]

By |2018-08-08T07:42:59+00:00September 9th, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|0 Comments

Pastrami Queen, Upper East Side, NYC + Little Rock

Next time that we join a scavenger hunt, we decided we'd do so in an area smaller than the 843 acres of rolling hills we know as Central Park. That was where we had needed to find 52 locations in 2 hours while attending an Untapped Cities scavenger hunt in conjunction with the Museum of the City of New York! Hungry for sure, we opted to head to Pastrami Queen on Lex where we shared one of their "our world famous" giant overstuffed lean pastrami sandwich ($18). The friendly staff  — knowing we were sharing — divided that in thirds! Yes, thirds, which was almost too much to eat as we [...]

By |2018-09-04T15:58:01+00:00September 3rd, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|0 Comments

Cornelia Street Cafe, West Village, NYC + Girls and Boys

Stopped in for a quick lunch at the Cornelia Street Cafe on our way to see Carey Mulligan in the gut-wrenching, one-woman show Girls and Boys from the Tony Award-winning writer Dennis Kelly at the Minetta Lane Theater a couple blocks away. The run of that fabulous show will have ended by the time you read this.  It's a cozy restaurant with very friendly service that I recommend. I tried their simply done huevos rancheros ($12) with two poached eggs atop grilled tortillas with whole black beans, Cheddar cheese and fresh salsa topped with crème fraîche. My friend tried the quiche of the day ($14) served with a lightly dressed mesclun [...]

By |2018-07-13T09:38:18+00:00August 14th, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|0 Comments

The Band’s Visit Sweeps the Tonys

Here’s the full list of Tony Award nominations and winners with some words from winners when they came to meet the press in the media room. (This post come from our partner Theater Pizzazz)  Theater Pizzazz’ Mark Ryan Anderson was there to note the responses and take photos.   Best musical WINNER: “The Band’s Visit” – (on a possible revival of The Full Monty) “I kind of miss those songs…I would love to work on Full Monty again.” “Frozen” “Mean Girls” “SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical” Best performance by an actor in a leading role in a musical Harry Hadden-Paton, “My Fair Lady” Joshua Henry, “Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel” WINNER: Tony Shalhoub, [...]

By |2018-06-11T11:21:23+00:00June 11th, 2018|Big Apple Life, NYC Best Bites, Theatre|0 Comments

Oiji, East Village, NYC + Miss You Like Hell

Before heading to The Public to see the musical "Miss You Like Hell" from Tony award-winning Quiara Alegría Hudes ('In the Heights') and genre-breaking songwriter Erin McKeown, about an undocumented immigrant and her estranged daughter, we ate dinner at Oiji. Making a res at Oiji was more complicated than usual. I had made one by calling the place, was called back and told it was a mistake that I didn't have one as they don't take reservations until 14 days ahead. I then had to mark my calendar to do so. The door's opened at exactly 6 and the place was completely filled moments after. Oiji, named for cucumber kimchee, [...]

By |2018-05-22T08:12:27+00:00June 2nd, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|0 Comments

Russian Samovar, Theatre District, NYC + Angels in America

We for sure needed sustenance between "Millennium Approaches” and “Perestroika," parts one and two of the Tony-nominated Angels in America, the play with Nathan Lane and Andrew Garfield about life that's as relevant today as it was during the early AIDS epidemic. At a break in our theatre marathon, we headed next door to the quirky yet elegant Russian Samovar as their guests. Years ago at the restaurant's height, it was part-owned Mikhail Baryshnikov and attended by the Frank Sinatra's Rat Pack. They are gone, but the classic Russian comfort food establishment has remained the same. In fact, their menu lists "grilled sturgeon" that hasn't been served in years. I love to enjoy [...]

By |2018-05-21T16:08:13+00:00May 31st, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|0 Comments

A Baker’s Dozen Medium-Priced ($$) Pre-Theatre Options: Theatre District

Here's another round up of restaurants, this time medium-priced ($$) ones in the Theatre District, offering a baker’s dozen sampling of BiteoftheBest.com's restaurant reviews. Bea 403 W 43rd St 212-602-1910 Intimate eatery with interesting small and large plates. Becco 355 W 46th St 212-397-7597 Pasta specials at Lidia Bastianich's lower-priced sibling to Felidia on theatre row. Blue Fin 1567 Broadway, New York, NY 10036 212-918-1400  Seafood restaurant on Times Square. Gallo Nero 402 W 44th St 212-265-6660 A hidden gem; an Italian friendly and comfy neighborhood spot. Il Punto Ristorante 507 9th Ave (at 40th) 212-244-0088  A friendly Italian place with good food. Don't miss the warm chocolate souffle. Marseille 630 [...]

By |2018-06-24T07:26:42+00:00May 29th, 2018|Theatre|0 Comments

Nios, Theatre District, NYC + Amy and The Orphans

I'm always looking for NYC theatre area restaurants to try and suggest. I recently stopped in Nios in the Muse Hotel for a casual bite before heading across the street to Round About theatre to see Amy and The Orphans. It's the story of siblings heading to bury their dad; Amy has Down syndrome, like the actress (Jamie Brewer) playing her and spouts recognizable movie lines. She's spent most of her life in state-funded institutions. We learn during the moving play that she had housed been at Willowbrook. (For a complete review on Theater Pizzazz, click here.) I chose the Sokol-Blosser Evolution Pinot Noir ($14) to sip while looking at the [...]

La Piazza at Eataly, Gramercy-Flatiron, NYC

One friend and I stopped by La Piazza for a glass of wine after a board meeting. We befriended an adorable server, who when he learned we were heading to Italy, asked if we could take him with us. While sipping a glass of the 2016 Nicolis Angelo Valpolicella Classico, Veneto ($14), Italy, we ordered their barbabietole e arancia ($8), a combo of roasted beets, oranges, goat cheese and EVOO — a tasty dish that needed salt. Our friendly server came by with their wonderful crusty bread, some grassy award-winning EVOO to try and a grinder to add some fresh salt to our serving. Wondering how can we fit him into [...]

By |2018-04-05T08:34:49+00:00April 25th, 2018|City Bites, NYC Best Bites|0 Comments

JAX B-B-Q, Hells Kitchen, NYC + Come From Away

We stopped in at JAX BBQ before heading to see the amazing musical,  Come From Away, that takes place following the September 11 attacks telling a true story of the people on the planes that landed unexpectedly in the small town of Gander, Newfoundland. For a complete review of the show, click here. As their guest, we sampled as much of JAX offerings as feasible. Realize that some food photos contain only a partial portion. Starters include southern delicacies like Bayou alligator fritters ($14.95), that are not to be missed. Having eaten alligator many times before, I knew how good these fritters were - as the meat was not rubbery at all [...]

By |2018-04-11T16:11:31+00:00April 10th, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|0 Comments

Feinstein’s 54 Below, Theatre District, NYC

Earlier this year, I accompanied my friend from Theater Pizzazz to Feinstein's 54 Below, an intimate supper club offering dinner and drinks, to see Ben Vereen. The food had been so remarkable that I requested my return to sample more for a real review of the food of Executive Chef Lynn Bound. They invited me when Linda and Laura Benanti — mother and daughter — performed. Laura is a Tony Award-winning actress who began her Broadway career at the age of 18, starring opposite Richard Chamberlain in The Sound of Music; this show, The Story Goes On marks Linda’s return to the stage. We arrived at 5:15 when they opened the [...]

By |2018-03-04T17:13:59+00:00April 1st, 2018|NYC Best Bites, Theatre|0 Comments

Piccola Strada, East Village, NYC + Rosemary and Time

Piccola Strada a tiny Genovese restaurant across from the theatre where we were attending a performance of Rosemary and Time came highly recommended by more than one friend. It's a BYOB place with a mere $5 corkage fee. Our waiter offered suggestions. We might have been better off if we hadn't listened to him. We started with the Carciofini Al Forno, artichokes hearts sprinkled with parmesan cheese and olive oil then baked ($11). Nicely done, but nothing special. Same goes for their Ossobuco Di Manzo of very tender beef shank braised in red wine accompanied by tender gnocchi all in in a bolognese sauce ($22). My least favorite was one of the specials [...]

By |2018-03-14T10:40:47+00:00March 28th, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|Comments Off on Piccola Strada, East Village, NYC + Rosemary and Time

Red Farm, Upper West Side, NYC + Admissions

Red Farm's chef Joe Ng had just been nominated by the James Beard Foundation as this year's "Best Chef in New York City" making me even more excited to head to the UWS location of this Chinese restaurant. We got to the 77th Street location early as we had ticket to see a Jessica Hecht ensemble performance at Lincoln Center. It wasn't until after we arrived that I learned that my dining partner was a dear friend of owner Ed Schoenfeld, who then proceeded to send us out some goodies. My favorite of the evening was the first dish that Ed sent. They call it a bruschetta, but there's no bread. [...]

By |2018-03-14T10:41:46+00:00March 26th, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|0 Comments

Kubeh, West Village, NYC + Relevance

Kubeh refers to a Middle Eastern dumpling that I had read about being offered in my hood at a restaurant by the same name. We stopped by on the way to the Lucille Lortel to see one of our favorite actresses Jayne Houdyshell (who had won a Tony nomination forDolls House 2, and a Tony for her Humans performance). This time she was an angry feminist in Relevance. The noise level at Kubeh was deafening once we past the bar and into the dining room. We ordered some drinks and a couple of items from the meze part of their menu. The chunks of chilled roasted eggplant, pomegranate arils and fresh mint leaves [...]

By |2018-02-21T09:10:00+00:00March 22nd, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|0 Comments

Estiatorio Milos, Midtown, NYC + In The Body of The World

The best way to experience the pricey Estiatorio Milos down the street from City Center is to order their reasonable prix-fixe menu. Their pre-theater menu, served between 5:00-6:00 pm, offers three courses for $55, containing both the Faroe Islands sustainable organic salmon my friend ordered a la carte for $49 and the grilled Mediterranean Octopus, I ordered for $29. But wait, I'm getting a bit ahead of myself. We ate there wanting to be close to the theater where we were seeing In the Body of the World as it was quite cold out. The restaurant is known for their fish, their pricey fish. As you can see from the fish-0n-ice photo, [...]

Lucciola, Upper West Side, NYC + Parisian Woman

I was invited to Lucciola, a new restaurant uptown on 90th street and Amsterdam Avenue. My friend and I headed there after seeing an amazingly good production of The Parisian Woman. The buzz was they play wasn't very good, but Uma Thurman's performance was worth seeing. My Tony-voting friend and I loved both the play, the current references to that man in The White House and all the performances. I highly recommend! For a complete review on TheaterPizzazz, click here. When we arrived at Lucciola, my friend ordered a classic Sazerac ($12) and I asked to sample their Santa Clara ($12). I was told they didn't have any mezcal but [...]

By |2018-03-16T08:48:53+00:00March 12th, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|0 Comments

Brooklyn Diner, Theater District, NYC + Cardinal

Knowing that diners are generally a good option for breakfast/brunch, we decided to try the theater location of the Brooklyn Diner as it was down the street from the Second Stage theatre. That's where we were seeing a matinee of the Cardinal, a 90-minute play where Anna Chlumsky and Adam Pally— as the characters in Greg Pierce’s new play — literally paint their town red. We sat at a booth in this nostalgic diner-style space. In an ice tea mode, I tried Brooklyn Diner’s version of the Long Island ice tea! Quite good. We both ordered the hearty New Yorker Breakfast ($25) of eggs over easy with crispy bacon, a toasted everything [...]

By |2018-02-01T11:22:54+00:00March 10th, 2018|NYC Restaurant Reviews, Theatre|0 Comments