A few weeks after my last trip to the Big Cheese & a job switchero later, I made my way back to NYC for another lovely & delicious adventure. Of course...I must share. The highlights include a mind boggling breakfast, tasty treats from the sea, & the BYO movement. Big Cheese...you never cease to impress.
I have been taunted & teased with details of Clinton St. Baking Company (4 Clinton St. @ Houston) and the amazing brunch for the better part of 4 years now. Finally, I had a lazy Sunday morning to stand the wait & let my buds be the judge. Several speechless moments & fist pumps later, the Clinton St. Baking Company takes a rightful space in my Breakfast Top 5. There were 4 of us & we ordered 5 dishes (yes, there was a french toast floater) all of which were extremely tasty, but 3 bites were just a cut above the rest. The first moment of pure delight was produced by the sugar cured bacon...which sent my buds to heaven by adding a sweet caramelized crisp to my salty pork belly. Second, were the truffle fried eggs a top a medley of wild & perfectly sauteed wild mushrooms...a smart order placed by my NYC foodie partner in crime, Dawn Darby. The last of the highlights was brought to us by the floater. Brioche French Toast complete with caramelized bananas, pecans, and warm maple butter that blew my mind. It is something that is pretty much impossible to put into words, but there have been few breakfast bites in my life that rival that one...if any. Butter...it just makes life so much better.
Later in my visit, I was able to check off another long time hit-list dweller, Mary's Fish Camp (64 Charles St. @ Bleecker). Perfectly nestled in the West Village the small space is big on character & flavor. Bellying up to the bar (wine & beer only) for mussels, shoestring fries, crawfish beignets (ohhh...so much more to come on these tasty morsels of fried dough...stay tuned for the next post), & a local brew was perfect for a rainy NYC evening for catching up with Chatty (SF & I miss you lady!). Overall experience was just much better than most.
The last highlight is more like a movement...one that I think SF could certainly get in on...and it is BYO. They provide the delicious grub, a warm space, & you provide beer or wine of your choice...sans the 3x mark up. It's genius. Here are a the few I have hit...I can hardly wait to uncover more of these treasures.
Tartine (French/West Village) - 253 W 11th between 4th St. & Waverly Pl.
Ivo & Lulu (French-Caribean/SoHo) - 558 Broome St. @ Varvick St.
Cube 63 (Japanese/Lower East Side) - 63 Clinton St. between Rivington St. & Stanton St.
CUPCAKES! I know I said there were 3 highlights, but I could not resist giving a little love to my new favorite cupcake joint. Sugar Sweet Sunshine in the Lower East Side nearly knocked my socks off. They talked me into the "Sunshine" which sounded like a snore (yellow cake with vanilla buttercream) & I am was not disappointed. The most wonderful cupcake I ever did taste. Step aside Magnolia...these cupcakes mean business.
From NYC...I head directly to New Orleans for my first taste of the Big Easy. Serious curds of info to come...