Hoppers in Soho, London

vintage tamil posters setting the mood at hoppers

“Let’s go to that Sri Lankan restaurant!” is probably a phrase you will never hear in New York. First of all, I’m not even sure if Sri Lankan restaurants exist in Manhattan. And even if they did, would they get the same level of attention or press that a vegan or pizza restaurant would? London, however, is more accepting of different cuisines than we are, which explains the success and popularity of Hoppers, a Sri Lankan restaurant in Soho. Read More

The Barbary in London

the barbary in covent garden, london

The Barbary is the type of place I’d come to all the time if I lived in London. It has a fun, relaxed vibe, the food is exciting, and the prices are reasonable. The open grill sits in the center of the restaurant like a stage, where diners can pull up at one of the 24 bar seats for a front row seat. Chefs expertly wield the flames to turn out perfectly cooked pieces of grilled meats and other tasty treats robataya-style.

the kitchen’s the stage

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Dante at Genuine in Little Italy

dante at genuine

Despite the name, Little Italy has never been known for its Italian food. There are plenty of red sauce tourist traps that line the streets, but actually eating at one results in disappointment. Which is why I was excited to hear about Dante’s residency at Genuine on the corner of Mulberry and Grand. Dante is a neighborhood favorite in Greenwich Village that is known for its $10 “Negroni Sessions” happy hour and solid Italian cuisine. My go-to meal there is always a glass of the Americano cocktail and a plate of the wild boar ragu pappardelle.Read More

Brunch at Fairfax, an All Day Cafe in West Village

brunch at fairfax, left to right, clockwise: egg sandwich, avocado toast, cubano sandwich, petit omelette, half watermelon with aleppo pepper, lime and cilantro

Perla, the homey Italian restaurant in the West Village that didn’t quite take off in its new space on W. 4th St, has been rebranded as an all-day cafe called Fairfax. The intent is to be more of a casual hangout where one can linger at all hours, starting from the morning with a light breakfast and coffee and ending the night with a glass of wine and snacks. The layout, as a result, has opened up to assume more of a spacious, living room feel rather than the typical cramped West Village dining room. The menu also has been edited down to consist of a selection of small plates and snacks as to accommodate the different dining approach.Read More

Secchu Yokota Tempura Omakase

secchu yokota in east village

We live in a day and age where a restaurant’s fate is seemingly determined by its ability to garner press. Those who are lucky enough to be picked up in the New York Times or to be constantly featured in food bloggers’ Instagram feeds can add on a few years, whereas those who are ignored will soon die from irrelevance. Which is why it’s unusual to find Secchu Yokota, a Japanese tempura restaurant in the East Village that operates under the radar in soft-open mode and has never officially advertised its opening, thriving.Read More