Metta Plays with Fire in Fort Greene, Brooklyn

metta on a quiet corner in fort greene

There’s something primal and pure about cooking things over an open fire. You’re exposed to the elements, a slave to the whims of the fire, without modern appliances to tone things up or down. Food cooked in this manner is never perfect, always coming out a little blistered or charred, which seems like it could be frustrating for type-A chefs who want to completely control the outcome of the dish. So when I heard that Metta, a new restaurant in Fort Greene, would specialize in wood-fire cooking, and that it wouldn’t be a bbq or pizza restaurant, which we expect to be a little rough around the edges, I was intrigued to pay them a visit.Read More

Bessou, A Charming Japanese Eatery

the kabocha shakshuka – curried roasted kabocha, baked egg, miso tofu labne with thick-cut milk toast

At first glance, it might be easy to dismiss Bessou as just another cute Japanese restaurant. The brunch menu reads like the whimsical thoughts of a young schoolgirl with visions of Seuss and sugarplums in her head, whipping up concoctions like a green eggs and chaashuu sandwich or a matcha black sesame babka. It all sounds very fun, but maybe not all that substantial, like reading your way through the pages of a lightweight gossip mag. Highly instagrammable, but highly edible? I was a little skeptical.Read More

Pinch Chinese in Soho

saturday night at pinch chinese

When you hear that a former executive chef of Din Tai Fung is making soup dumplings in Soho, you run, not walk, to that restaurant as soon as possible.¬†While the soup dumpling scene in New York is improving, nothing quite compares to Din Tai Fung, and since we’re not getting a NYC branch anytime soon, I figured this might be the next best thing. We dropped by Pinch Chinese, the restaurant in question, on a Saturday night, praying that there wouldn’t be epic waits for a dinner table.Read More

Mokbar’s Korean Ramen

mokbar at chelsea market

I was feeling very nostalgic this weekend. I was craving a bowl of spicy korean ramen noodles, specifically the instant kind like Shin or Neoguri ramen. The bad thing about instant noodles is that they are full of sodium and MSG, which take all the fun out of eating them, so I had to come up with a plan B. When I browsed through the Instagram feed of Mokbar and saw page after page of ramen noodles in a bright and fiery red broth, I knew I had found the solution.Read More

Shu Jiao Fu Zhou, A Fujianese Hole in the Wall

pork and chive dumplings at shu jiao fu zhou

There are a lot of¬†hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Chinatown that you wouldn’t think twice about. Shu Jiao Fu Zhou, however, is one you should actually step into, despite the misgivings you might have about its dingy signage and furniture. The only one with second thoughts will be you, because inside there will be a ton of people, mostly consisting of Chinese locals and a few in-the-know diners, happily eating their way through a bowl of noodles and dumplings.Read More