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What is the most surprising dish you've eaten in NYC in the past year?

Upvoted by Dan Daley and 24 others
85 10th Avenue, New York, NY
sayat-ozyilmaz

Sayat Özyılmaz

San Francisco

https://www.instagram.com/lauraandsayat/

Moved to San Francisco, doing Istanbul-themed pop-ups every week with my wife at www.feastly.com/lauraandsayat

Sayat Özyılmaz

Moved to San Francisco, doing Istanbul-themed pop-ups every week with my wife at www.feastly.com/lauraandsayat

Answer found helpful by Rosa Lowe and 20 others

Toro is one of the few restaurants we've been to more than once in NYC. This dish will stay with me forever. It's a pig ears terrine, king crab and an aioli with crispy garnishes. It's a statement that when odd parts are cooked properly they can be as delicate as crab. The terrine was incredibly tender, the pairing was jealousy-inducing, and the experience at Toro always inspiring. Chef Jamie and team hit the nail on the head with this one. Incredible dish.

Helpful 21 Comments (1)
tara-daly

Tara Daly

New York

PR for Dining & Hospitality

Tara Daly

awesome description!

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Morgan Theriault and 23 others
414 East 9th Street, New York, NY
tina-bourbeau

Executive Chef, Sr. Director of Product Development at Fresh Direct

Tina Bourbeau

Executive Chef, Sr. Director of Product Development at Fresh Direct

Answer found helpful by Peter Abatelli and 11 others

Toshio Tomita was the Executive Chef at Nobu when I was there. We are pals, and
I highly recommend having a pal in the category of “one of the most outrageous (and under the radar) chefs in the city”. He has since left to open Cagen where I went in July. We had course after course of perfect and obscure fish. There is nothing surprising in the perfection of the innately flawless combination of rice, uni and nori. However in Tomita’s hands, the uni from Hokkaido, Japan, the warm, seasoned a-la-minute rice, and some kind of proprietary nori situation that practically shatters in your mouth with salty crunch, is a whole ‘nother level of execution. His execution is singular in the quantity of love that he piles on top of everything he does.

Helpful 12 Comments (2)
kerry-smith

Kerry Smith

New York

When life gives you limes, just add tequila

Kerry Smith

How have I not been to Cagen? This sounds amazing!

Reply over 1 year ago

Chunwoo Kae

Cagen is the best hidden sushi gem in manhattan. Creme brulee sushi ftw

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Yuno Takayama and 21 others
60 Greenpoint Avenue, Brooklyn, NY
john-karangis

Executive Chef at Union Square Events

John Karangis

Executive Chef at Union Square Events

Answer found helpful by Rosa Lowe and 22 others

The most interesting thing I ate this year was the HellBoy pizza at Paulie Gee's. I had never been to Paulie Gee's, but had heard they made fantastic pizza, so I was excited to go for the first time. My non-foodie friend could only talk about a pizza called The Hellboy. He said its served with 'lots of honey'. I simply wasn't interested. I'm more of a pizza traditionalist and I wanted to experience what I knew and what I was comfortable with. My friend said to trust him and I did. Wow! It was amazing. I was blown away on how bracingly spicy the soppressata was, and it's a perfect balance with the honey, sweet tomatoes, mozzarella and parmigiano. The pizza itself had a delicious char and was beautiful to look at. It was one of those spicy food experiences where its so hot I didn't want it, but had to eat it at the same time. I'll definitely be going back for a Hellboy.

Helpful 23 Comments (2)
scott-chen

Marketing consultant, food network voyeur

Scott Chen

The Hellboy sounds like an interesting combination of flavors that just shouldn't work. I'm glad it did! Can't wait to try this place out this weekend!

Reply over 1 year ago

ashley-belin

Cheap eats to fine dining and everything in between

Ashley Belin

Thank you John! Loved this!

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Chyanti Mukherjee and 19 others
christopher-cryer

Christopher Cryer

New York City

Executive Chef, Seamores

Christopher Cryer

Executive Chef, Seamores

Answer found helpful by Rosa Lowe and 17 others

I was very excited walking into Masato Shimizu's East 15. The dishes were pure, beautiful and absolutely delicious. Out of all the dishes I experienced that night, there is one that I still think of to this day, the "Sashimi & Tartare of Bluefin Tuna". The tartare of toro was like butter and the lean akami sashimi layered over top added even more great texture when the two were combined. A light briny caviar sauce tied the entire dish together, making it the best dish I've had this year thus far.

Helpful 18 Comments (4)
robert-friedman

Wine lover, world traveler

Robert Friedman

That looks superb and love your descriptin

Reply over 1 year ago

jeremy-peterson

Brooklynite, freelance journalist/photographer

Jeremy Peterson

Thank you for the recommendation!

Reply over 1 year ago

goldie-owens

Avid traveler and lover of all things with cheese

Goldie Owens

Incredible! I hope it's still being offered there

Reply over 1 year ago

virginie-bereznak

A balanced diet is a cookie in both hands.

Virginie Bereznak

I just ate here and tried the sashimi and tartare and had similar thoughts of, "wow, this is possibly the best thing I've ever eaten". SO excited to see this on the list!

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Morgan Theriault and 16 others
22 Orchard Street, New York, NY
john-cassanos

director of operations, il Buco

John Cassanos

director of operations, il Buco

Answer found helpful by Rosa Lowe and 14 others

The most surprising dish I've had this year was the "Chino-quiles". It's layers of crispy Yucca, spicy pork sauce and a silky custard of eggs. It manages to be both rustic and elegant -- spicy, soulful, completely satisfying and freakin delicious!. I was told they were only serving it at brunch for a while, but promoted it to dinner because people went crazy for it.

Helpful 15 Comments (2)
robert-friedman

Wine lover, world traveler

Robert Friedman

You hit the nail on the head with this John - amazing

Reply over 1 year ago

kevin-malouf

Born in brooklyn, sampled cuisine from all over the world

Kevin Malouf

This gives me another reason to go back!

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Morgan Theriault and 15 others
7 Spring Street, New York, NY
patrick-miller

patrick miller

Brooklyn

www.rucolabrooklyn.com

Chef de Cuisine, Partner at Rucola

patrick miller

Chef de Cuisine, Partner at Rucola

Answer found helpful by Bobby Severini and 17 others

The Snails in Green Curry is a dish that I've had several times now, and never ceases to amaze me. I love snails, and I get them whenever I see them on a menu. But usually I'm in a French restaurant somewhere, and they're covered in butter, garlic and parsley. Delicious. BUT this is mind blowing. The curry isn't a mouth melting spicy, like other dishes at Uncle Boons, Super flavorful and well-seasoned. Ask for a side of Roti bread to mop up the sauce. This is a dish Ill get every time I go, until either I die, or they close. It's that good.

Helpful 18 Comments (3)
ashley-belin

Cheap eats to fine dining and everything in between

Ashley Belin

I've been to Boons but never thought to try this...love your description!

Reply over 1 year ago

kevin-malouf

Born in brooklyn, sampled cuisine from all over the world

Kevin Malouf

Looks excellent!

Reply over 1 year ago

bobby-severini

Bobby Severini

Brooklyn

https://www.linkedin.com/in/bobbyseverini

High-end Caterer using restaurants as my R&D

Bobby Severini

their menu looks GREAT!

Reply 10 months ago

Upvoted by Matthew Norris and 14 others
47 E 12th St, New York, NY
steven-hubbell

Executive Chef at Junoon Owner Devil's Larder Bitters

Steven Hubbell

Executive Chef at Junoon Owner Devil's Larder Bitters

Answer found helpful by Rosa Lowe and 19 others

I became fans of Nick and Jimmy when they were at Neta. They hooked me with a dish made of the bits of flesh scraped from between the tuna spine. So when they opened Shuko I was stoked. Every dish was baller. Very thoughtful ideas and execution and watching them behind the counter is a joy. Kicking of the kaiseki with house made mochi to ocean trout with Sichuan pepper. All the dishes are stunner but, the biggest surprise was the apple pie for dessert. The pie while absolutely delicious it was memorable because who in the hell gives you pie at a sushi joint?! Perfectly executed pie at that. I dig that they don't take them selves too seriously and are clearly having a great time.

Helpful 20 Comments (3)
gerardo-rodriguez

NYC bartender & specialty cocktail creationist

Gerardo Rodriguez

Sushi and pie is an interesting concept, I'm surprised it works well together.

Reply over 1 year ago

ashley-belin

Cheap eats to fine dining and everything in between

Ashley Belin

Yes this sounds like my kinda joint. I love it thank you!

Reply over 1 year ago

steven-hubbell

Executive Chef at Junoon Owner Devil's Larder Bitters

Steven Hubbell

Your'e welcome. Definitely go support them.

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Rosa Lowe and 13 others
sam-crocker

Executive Chef at Burnside Biscuits

Sam Crocker

Executive Chef at Burnside Biscuits

Answer found helpful by Eliot Abrams and 17 others

After almost 9 years of cooking in New York City, I had yet to go to Gramercy Tavern for what so many chefs, cooks, and others described as a seminal meal. Well, I went. It was what ever one had described, what it has consistently been since it opened. But it was surprising because of one dish. A simple ruby red shrimp dish; perfectly cooked, expressive of the waters it came from, and simple enough to excite the entire palate. With no where to hide, it was truly great for its simplicity.

Helpful 18 Comments (2)
scott-chen

Marketing consultant, food network voyeur

Scott Chen

I never would have thought to try the shrimp from Gramercy Tavern. Thanks for the rec.

Reply over 1 year ago

alyssa-heitlinger

Private chef specializing in Italian, French

Alyssa Heitlinger

Loved your description of it!

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Amit Roy and 11 others
456 Hudson St, New York, NY
michael-landas

Michael Landas

New York City

Chef de Cuisine at Boilermaker

Michael Landas

Chef de Cuisine at Boilermaker

Answer found helpful by Rosa Lowe and 10 others

Testicargot. When I read about that dish and it's full description, all I could imagine was some "Bizarre Food with Andrew Zimmern" type of dish. How wrong I was. As you could imagine, the "parts" were prepared in a shiso butter with just the right amount of garlic, I kept forgetting I wasn't eating escargot. I found myself in the rare situation of asking for more.

Helpful 11 Comments (1)
john-rudolph

BBQ Grill Master, beer lover

John Rudolph

Never tried this but looks interesting. Takashi is definitely not for the feint of heart.

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Daniela Garcia and 10 others
sayat-ozyilmaz

Sayat Özyılmaz

San Francisco

https://www.instagram.com/lauraandsayat/

Moved to San Francisco, doing Istanbul-themed pop-ups every week with my wife at www.feastly.com/lauraandsayat

Sayat Özyılmaz

Moved to San Francisco, doing Istanbul-themed pop-ups every week with my wife at www.feastly.com/lauraandsayat

Answer found helpful by Rosa Lowe and 20 others

After last night's meal I had to add one more dish to the list. I cook every day at work and at home, and it's a very special moment when something surprises me. I left the ordering to my fiancee since she works there and I watched the show they put together for us as it unfolded in front of our eyes. One of the first dishes was this terrine of foie gras and red cabbage leaves cooked in apple cider, the foie dish on the fall menu.

I absolutely loved it. Tender, acidic and earthy red cabbage leaves separated by layers of rich and gamey foie gras to mimic the look of a raw red cabbage. Perfectly New York, perfectly seasonal, displaying perfect technique, culinary confidence, humor and love. I was blown away.

Helpful 21 Comments (2)
eliot-abrams

My friends think I'm a food snob

Eliot Abrams

I wish I had money to eat at EMP more often. Always coming out with incredible cuisine.

Reply over 1 year ago

ashley-belin

Cheap eats to fine dining and everything in between

Ashley Belin

For real @Eliot. I loved reading about it though thanks Sayat!

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Mangal Dev and 10 others
abby-swain

Pastry chef at Craft, Craftbar

Abby Swain

Pastry chef at Craft, Craftbar

Answer found helpful by John Barber and 8 others

This was my first traditional Japanese breakfast. I had the porgy belly, it came with a bowl of miso soup, pickled vegetables, swiss chard, and tamagoyaki. My favorite part was the bowl of rice that they served with a poached egg and uni. I can't wait to go back and have the ramen.

Helpful 9 Comments (1)
jordan-mckinney

Jordan McKinney

Westchester

When I'm not working, I'm cooking

Jordan McKinney

Sounds like a great (and filling) breakfast!

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Matthew Norris and 10 others
tara-glick

Tara Glick

New York

Pastry Chef at American Cut

Tara Glick

Pastry Chef at American Cut

Answer found helpful by Matthew Norris and 13 others

When I heard Mimi Cheng's was collaborating with Pizza Loves Emily to do a cheeseburger dumpling, I was skeptical. Don't get me wrong - I love dumplings and I love cheeseburgers, but the two didn't seem like they should be married. Curiosity got the better of me though, and I had to try it one day while walking past. Turns out I was wrong, and it proved to be one of my favorite summer bites. Unfortunately it only ran for the month of August, but Septembers featured flavor, Cubano dumplings, will have me stopping by.

Helpful 14 Comments (2)
sheila-mayo

Coffee addict and world traveler

Sheila Mayo

Yes! I loved the cheeseburger dumplings!

Reply over 1 year ago

john-barber

Moved to New York City for work, stayed because of the food

John Barber

I walk by here all the time and had no idea they have such creative dumplings. Excited to check it out, thanks Tara!

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Jenaya Nubia and 10 others
chris-scott

Chef / Co-owner at Brooklyn Commune

Chris Scott

Chef / Co-owner at Brooklyn Commune

Answer found helpful by Carly Liao and 17 others

My friend, Chef Russell Jackson does these super undercover pop ups all over NYC, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. To get in is by invitation only, there is no website, you need a password at the door, and there's a personal escort to the location once the diners meet at a public place. Sounds fun so far, yes? One of my favorite dishes he's served up is an ode to the old LA food scene from the 1980's. Its a hodge-podge of all the vibrant cultures and flavors from that time period: Mexican-style braised pork "tacos" with Korean ramp kimchi, creamy tofu " queso fresco". Not only are the flavors spot on, but it shows that Chef Russell is paying homage to a younger version of himself. Remembering when he was a young chef doing his thing in a multicultural Los Angeles. Combining memory, culture and flavor to any dish makes it that much more, in my opinion.

Helpful 18 Comments (2)
jordan-mckinney

Jordan McKinney

Westchester

When I'm not working, I'm cooking

Jordan McKinney

Wow! This sounds amazing. Too bad it's invite only, or else I'd love to try it out.

Reply over 1 year ago

ashley-belin

Cheap eats to fine dining and everything in between

Ashley Belin

Umm, please tell us Chris, how do we get access to this? :)

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Matthew Norris and 9 others
60 East 65th Street, New York, NY
carmine-digiovanni

Carmine Di Giovanni

NYC

www.projectgroupnyc.com

Chef | Partner - Project Group

Carmine Di Giovanni

Chef | Partner - Project Group

Answer found helpful by Mary Krug and 12 others

The most surprising dish that I have had this year would be a foie gras, black truffle mille fuille paired with celery root at Daniel. Everything about the dish was perfectly prepared and seasoned. It was surprising and stood out was because the plating and presentation were so understated and then exploded with flavor on the first bite. Lots of technique went into that dish to make the flavors stand out on their own like they did.

Helpful 13 Comments (2)
alyssa-heitlinger

Private chef specializing in Italian, French

Alyssa Heitlinger

I don't think I ever got to try this dish but it sounds spectacular. Daniel = one of best meals I've ever had. Love it!

Reply over 1 year ago

john-barber

Moved to New York City for work, stayed because of the food

John Barber

Best meal I've had all year. Those truffles look spectacular!

Reply over 1 year ago

Upvoted by Rosa Lowe and 8 others
160 Havemeyer Street, Brooklyn, NY
sammy-diaz

Chef de Cuisine at The Eastpole

Sammy Diaz

Chef de Cuisine at The Eastpole

Answer found helpful by Matthew Norris and 12 others

One of the most surprising dishes I've eaten so far this year has been the "green scallion and milk" dish from Semilla restaurant in Williamsburg Brooklyn, NY. Semilla is a vegetable-driven restaurant that has made "hot 10 list" of Bon Appetite's September edition. The stewed scallions were perfectly cooked, topped off with fried shallots and an herb puree that evoked more flavor to the already delicious creamy dish. What really took it over the top was that half way through the dish they accompanied it with a nettle brioche. This allowed me to pick up what was left on the dish with a warm buttery piece of bread. I look forward to dining with them throughout the seasons to see what other great dishes they put out.

Helpful 13 Comments (2)
kevin-malouf

Born in brooklyn, sampled cuisine from all over the world

Kevin Malouf

This looks great loved the description

Reply over 1 year ago

alyssa-heitlinger

Private chef specializing in Italian, French

Alyssa Heitlinger

I've been hearing great things about Semilla - loved your description of this!

Reply over 1 year ago

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