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Thursday, December 3, 2015

The Weekly Roundup: Your Manhattan Food Court Manual, Restaurant Closures and The 12 Best Cheep Eats In NYC By

  • The Manhattan Food Court Manual:  Food courts are generally not as comfortable as restaurants, offering insufficient seating and leaving you to scramble to find a place to eat. Still, everyone finds them convenient and fun to visit at least once in a while. Here is Eater's guide to Manhattan food courts, listed from south to north. Hours given are those for the entire food court; times may vary for individual stalls.
  • How a Proposed SLA Restriction Could Drastically Change NYC Wine Lists: New York’s best restaurant wine lists may be soon killed off, and the proposed culprit is the New York State Liquor Authority (SLA), which has announced an intention to alter one of the key provisions of state beverage law. The change would be a big blow to how wine lists are written in the state, and would mean the end of the dominance that New York currently enjoys for wine in this country.
  • Photos: The Disappearing & Enduring Mom & Pop Storefronts Of NYC.  Years ago James and Karla Murray photographed old storefronts around New York, releasing their collection of images in a book called Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York. Now they've published a sequel highlighting the ongoing demise of our mom & pop shops... but also their survival!
  • New York’s Chains to Begin Salt-Shaming Customers This Week: On Tuesday, the salt-shaming rule passed in September by NYC's Board of Health takes effect, requiring a scary emblem next to chain menu items with at least 2,300 milligrams of sodium (or about a teaspoon's worth of salt).
  • Photos & Locations Of Nearly All Of Invader's New Mosaics: French street artist Invader just finished a three-week spree hanging his signature 8-bit-style mosaics all over downtown Manhattan, as well as a few scattered spots in Brooklyn.
  • New York's Craziest Sandwiches Strike Back: This decade might be dubbed the Era of Crazy Sandwiches, because every day more seem to appear. Consider them mini works of art: not only are many fun to eat (in some cases, only if you can figure out how to do so), but they’re beautiful to look at. Others are simply over the top, such as the Freight Train from Zaro’s in the Grand Central Dining Concourse, which is a study in modern excess. Here, then, is our fourth collection of strange sandwiches.

  • This 100-Year-Old Factory Makes the Saltiest Salt You’ll Ever Taste: Maldon is a small town of 14,000 on the Blackwater estuary in Essex, England. In the first century AD, it was at the forefront of Anglo-Saxon and Viking conflicts but since then, not much has happened.  Not much aside from the fact that it has become one of the world’s best known producers of salt.
  • America Has Officially Hit Peak IPA: Always at the forefront of American stunt brewing, Dogfish Head says it has concocted an India pale ale that clocks in at an insane 658 IBUs, making it the "hoppiest beer ever documented." For quick context, the number of IBUs, or International Bitterness Units, in a Bud is about 10, and abrasive imperial IPAs that some consider an acquired taste rarely top 100.
  • Eleven Madison Park Will Eliminate Tipping in 2016: The restaurant will switch to a $295, service-included menu in 2016 when New York raises its minimum wages. The NoMad, Eleven Madison's more casual sister spot, will keep its tipping system and hike its prices.
  • 24 Cool Kitchen Tools to Give Your Favorite Home Chef: Say "thank you" to the family member who always ends up cooking the holiday meal with one of these next-level kitchen items. There's the "Ferrari of immersion blenders" (the Electrolux Masterpiece) for the amateur Chopped contestant, and Instagram-ready marbled-jade rolling pins for the aspiring food blogger.


  • A First Taste of the Crazy Apps and Steaks at Quality Eats in Greenwich Village: Is there such a thing as a discount steakhouse? Well, if you don’t count crass franchises like Outback, Sizzler, and Longhorn — not until now. A few days ago Quality Meats, a well-regarded steakhouse just south of Central Park spun off Quality Eats in Greenwich Village, with the intention of showcasing, not porterhouses, ribeyes, and New York strips, but cheaper cuts of meat at reduced prices. In doing so, it has produced some admirable food, but has succeeded in being more like a parody of a steakhouse than a straight-arrow discount establishment.
  • West Village Carnage: Spasso, Doppio and Chapter One All Closed: The West Village is a notoriously difficult neighborhood to open and sustain a restaurant given its ultra-high rents. And in the last few weeks several notable spots have bitten the bullet.
  • Some Of NYC's Best Sandwiches Are Now Found In Greenwich Village: Court Street Grocers maintains its charming, general-store feel without straining, and they make some of the best sandwiches around from a something-for-everyone menu.

  • Go inside the Washington Square Arch without leaving your home: Have you ever noticed the door on the west side of the Washington Square Arch and wondered what was on the other side? Well wonder no more — you can now take a look inside the monument, thanks to a new video from the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation.
  • Why By Chloe Is 2015’s Most Surprising Restaurant Success Story: By Chloe has been relentlessly busy: Coscarelli and her partner, Esquared Hospitality's Samantha Wasser, field close to 1,000 tickets per day, and have already announced plans for a second location. There's certainly a huge market for cheap, convenient meals right now, but it's nevertheless remarkable that a first-time owner could find success so quickly.

  • Classic Latin Lunch Counter La Taza de Oro Has Closed for Good: Sad news out of Chelsea: La Taza de Oro, the classic lunch counter and arguably New York's most iconic Puerto Rican restaurant, has shuttered for good. The restaurant had been closed for the last nine months because of a full vacate order from the Department of Buildings, and though owner Eric Montalvo originally planned to reopen in 2016, he decided to close shop due to fresh financial burdens
  • Will Anthony Bourdain’s Market Be Sweet or Sour?  Enter Anthony Bourdain, the adventurous, anti-vegan, globetrotting chef and author who never tires of bringing us to the world’s great food destinations— and elevating the notion of eating like a local. Now, he’s bringing that expertise to New York.

  • BarBossa Closes Up Shop After a Decade on Elizabeth Street: Brazilian restaurant BarBossa had its last day of service on Sunday after more than a decade at 232 Elizabeth St., owner Ernani Assuncao says. Their lease was ending, and the new rent price from Steve Croman — one of the most hated landlords in New York— was close to three times higher than the previous rent, going from $7,500 per month to about $22,000 per month, Assuncao says.
  • The Last Pinche Taqueria Location Goes Dark: It looks like the last outpost of once-popular Mexican mini-chain Pinche Taqueria has closed. The doors to the restaurant at 333 Lafayette St. are locked, the lights are off, and the bar is stripped. Employees were telling customers on Friday that it was serving its final tacos, according to a neighboring business.

  • The 12 Best Cheap Eats In NYC: SPICY VILLAGE: This is the cleanest, tastiest cheap noodle in Chinatown. $5.95 buys you a formidable bowl (Spicy Vegetable Hui Mei) of noodles, bok choi, seaweed, and other miscellaneous veggies topped with fresh cilantro and friendly hunks of tofu. Mix everything thoroughly with the quarter-inch of broth on the bottom and feel your eyes sink sensuously into your skull. 
  • Food and Wine Magazine Votes Kiki’s NYC Cheesecake Amongst Best in America— And We Have the Recipe: Food and Wine Magazine recently named Nick Spanos’ cheesecake amongst the ten best in America. Nick is a co-proprietor at Kiki’s a 6-month-old popular Greek restaurant in the heart of Chinatown in New York City. The restaurant has been favorably featured in The New York Times and has quickly become a favorite hotspot amongst foodies and casual diners alike.

  • Get Ready for Star Wars Ice Cream From Brooklyn’s Ample Hills: Co-owner Brian Smith claims Ample Hills Creamery's two new frozen custards are, in all likelihood, "the coolest thing we've ever done," and really, it's hard to find fault in that assessment: New York's beloved ice-cream-maker worked directly with Lucasfilm and Disney to whip up a pair of official flavors for the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, both of which are available for preorder right now.

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