It’s probably hard to get to Jackson Heights for a weekday lunch for most folks… but I was able to try Thakali Kitchen (Nepalese/Tibetan) on one of my days off and ordered the Pumpkin Gravy Pharsi Goat $5.99 lunch special. The pumpkin sauce is so good –Perfect flavor for the season. Unfortunately, only half of the meat was tender. I could do with just the sauce over rice. Nice red hot sauce on the side.
Thakali Kitchen – 74-14 37th Ave. Jackson Heights, NY 11372
Bionic Bites has some awesome photos of this place.
Sam asked where to get pasta. I mentioned Bella Napoli. I’ve never had it. I’ll come along. He got the rigatoni. I got a nice portion of Lasagna for $6.50. Pretty good stuff. It took me about two hours to eat it. But a lot of that time was accounted for talking to one of the interns at the office. It was his last day. He asked for my advice on work. Instead I gave him advice on life. That could have been a life changing moment for him. For better or for worse, I don’t know. The food kept up. Cold lasagna, still good.
Bella Napoli – 257 7th Ave (btwn 24 & 25th St) New York 10010
The U.S. Open is being screened at Madison Square Park right now and I went to check out the food vendors. There’s some good options like banh mi sandwiches, fancy wings and beer, but my eyes stopped at “Pig Face Sandwich” from Resto. Mostly cheek meat with pickled onions on ciabatto ($8). I can’t remember if I’ve ever had pig face. At least I remember really wanting to.
My first bite was all bread and it was chewy. The meat was a light spread and had a bit of a cooked alcohol aroma to it. Right around the middle of it, it started getting real good when the pig face juice started soaking in the bread. I didn’t realize how much pig face juice there was. I got it all over my pants. I found a few pieces of meat after I finished the sandwich, which tasted kinda like liver and I likee. It made me think how the bread was just in the way. If I had to do it again, I’d open face it. They also have a Sloppy Goat Sandwich that sounds good. I love sloppy meats.
Resto @ Madison Square Park, NYC 10010 …until Sept 12th
I got hungry when I saw this Oxtail Stew on Serious Eats. But instead of getting the $11 one at Sophie’s, I went for the $8.50 one at Milanes. They gave me a full cup of pinto beans on the side. So smart when getting it to go –it doesn’t sog up everything on the walk back to the office. The Oxtail was tasty, but sometimes I wonder if Sophie’s green sauce is worth the extra $2.50. It probably is.
Milanes Restaurant – 168 W 25th St (btw 6th & 7th Ave) New York 10010
I haven’t returned to Johny’s Luncheonette since I tried their disappointing Famous Sloppy Johny (grilled chicken, bacon, onions, cheese and coleslaw on a hero). Sounds amazing, but didn’t work for me. It says a lot when you put “Home of the Sloppy Johny” on your awning, so I didn’t expect much from anything else on the menu. I was dead wrong. The Melissa Munchie (Hot Roast Beef, Sautéed Mushrooms, Onion Rings, and Melted Mozzarella on Garlic Bread) is frickin’ awesome. They even threw in a few fries in there. All the ingredients work together and melds into one hell of a trucker-style sandwich.
I feel bad that I wrote off Johny’s after that first sandwich. Now I have to eat my words …and I’d be happy to.
Johny’s Luncheonette – 124 W. 25th Street (btw 6th & 7th Ave) New York City, NY 10001
Walked around with Matt & Sam and ran into a $10 Burger & Beer lunch special at Lillie’s. I’ve seen this place before and was always too intimidated by how fancy it looks, but we took a chance. I ordered my burger medium-rare, Matt had his rare. The cute waitress asked if she should just bring out the cow live. That’s the kind of playful waitress flirting that makes a man feel attractive. I bet so many guys walk away thinking she’s into them.
The burger was okay and came with plenty of fries. With a Stella, it’s a pretty good burger & beer deal. You don’t even have to get a burger. You can get a Grilled Ham & Cheese like Sam.
Lillie’s Victorian Bar & Restaurant – 13 E 17th St (btwn 5th Ave & W Union Sq) New York, NY 10003
Had the Chicken Special at Terry’s Gourmet Deli, where they have great Caribbean roti. The Chicken Special – two dark pieces with two sides for $3.99. Almost seemed like the sides were decided for me –white rice and vegetables. The chicken tasted like a fresher version of one of those microwave Oriental/Caribbean Chicken frozen meals. I could really go for a roti next time.
Terry’s Gourmet Deli – 575 6th Ave (@ 16th St) New York 10011
Finally tried DhaBa for their $9.95 lunch buffet. Last time I was in there getting the Bhel Puri and Pav Bhaji street snacks, I sat around in the dining room staring at the awesome looking buffet. Yes, it’s as good as it looks. There was a shrimp dish, another one with nice blocks of cheese, and plenty of curries. Waiting on the table for us, was a plate of Baigun Bhaja (fried eggplant slices), which was really tasty with the accompanying chutney. A server came by with fresh naan and another came by with a plate of fresh drumsticks to the table. So good.
DhaBa – 108 Lexington Ave (Btwn 27th & 28th St), New York 10016