After giving my restaurant reviews from September a once over, I recognize that there is not much of a discernible theme to impart to you all. The true standout was Russ and Daughters, so bagel connoisseurs and/or Jewlish delicatessen lovers, rejoice! I’m saving my new coffee shop recommendations for my October reviews, as I’ll be on the west coast the majority of the month, aside from a short time working remotely in NYC. More to come on that later 🙂 For now, here are all of the places that you should know about in NYC that I experienced in the month of September.
Russ and Daughters – If bagels, smoked fish, and old school NYC institutions are your jam, you’re going to want to make sure that Russ and Daughters is on your list. There’s the original East Houston location, of course, but there’s also a newer and more spacious cafe on Orchard Street where you can sit down and stay awhile. Far and away my favorite menu item is the Super Heebster, which is a whitefish and salmon salad combo with wasabi roe and horseradish dill cream cheese on thin bagel toast. The latkes, kugel, and pastrami-cured salmon should also be on your table.
Sugarcane – The first time I ate at Sugarcane in Dumbo, I smiled to myself while reading the menu. You can truly find everything on there, from sushi to mushroom lasagna. I sat outside at Sugarcane for a leisurely weekday lunch, and focused on the sushi portion of the menu with great results. It definitely won’t be your most economical meal, but if you’re looking for something that’s not pizza while out with a group in Dumbo, this is your spot.
Black Seed Bagels – I have four words for you: bagel of the month. Black Seed Bagels are always my jam, and the best part of visiting is trying their epic monthly collaborations that are jam-packed with inventive ingredients. Case in point: September’s collaboration with Olmsted. The collab was a pimenton and tomato bagel with jamon, piquillo peppers, pickled guindilla cream cheese, and sungold tomatoes. Boom.
Blackbarn – On the northern edge of Madison Square Park, Blackbarn is one of those restaurants that you can bring many different types of companions to and always find something for everyone. It’s a no-brainer for a seated lunch or dinner, and you can find everything from tuna tartare with avo and mango pico to a delightful white pizza with mission figs and caramelized onions.
Time Out Market – I have to say that I was pretty disappointed when I visited Time Out Market in Dumbo for the first time this past month. There’s nothing inherently wrong with the concept or layout, but I found the execution to be pretty unenticing. I’d say if there’s a vendor you’re interested in, skip this market and go right to the original location.
Lillie’s Victorian Establishment – In the vein of Oscar Wilde, Lillie’s is a bar that serves a purpose within the neighborhood and is good to have in your back pocket. It’s right off of Union Square, has a fun Victorian-era vibe, and you can find both a cocktail, a glass of vino, or a beer there without breaking the bank. Would I recommend it as a destination in and of itself? No.