Ippudo, Petrossian, Spotted Pig, and Gray’s Papaya
In the interest of saving time, something that remains quite elusive nowadays, I have compiled reviews of the remaining restaurants I ate at during my August 2010 vacation in New York into one article.Ippudo
Essentially, Ippudo is what you get if you ask a trained chef to make ramen for a living. In Japan, the restaurant is a chain, sporting multiple locations, but in New York, there is only one location. Wait times can get quite long since Ippudo seems to have found a niche in the food world.
The noodles are handmade and fresh, and the broth is too. I agree that Ippudo ramen has a distinctly different taste than cheap, packaged ramen, but I can’t say that Ippudo is the transformative experience I was looking for. While flour noodles floating in broth would be a great pre-race carbo-loading meal, ramen is definitely not something you would want to eat on a daily basis. In summary, I would say, give Ippudo a try, but I would not visit Ippudo again since there are many more choices for great food in New York.
Petrossian is an establishment that offers fine caviar and smoked fish. I only tried a salad which I shared with my grandmother there, so I can’t say much about the place. However, the cobb salad I ate was exceptionally tasty. There were tomatoes, boiled eggs, smoked salmon, avocado, bacon, and some sort of cheese. Cobb salad, by the way, is a very healthy food choice. I ate this salad immediately after running at Central Park, so the protein from the salmon and boiled eggs was very beneficial. Avocados are great too because of their monounsaturated fats.
I hold a high standard for burgers, since I rarely eat them, so I decided to try the famed burger. In fact, my sister and my grandma both ordered the Spotted Pig burger also. Yes, our table had three burgers and nothing else.
The bun has perfect crosshatch grill marks and a very thin, yet crispy exterior. On the inside however, the bun is the lightest, most fluffy, bread you can find.
The beef is also noteworthy, juicy and crumbly, but sturdy enough not to fall apart. The shoestring fries that came with the burger was also laudable. They were incredibly thin, had a crisp shell, and smelled faintly like garlic. In addition, the rosemary mixed into the fries elevated the fries into a multi-dimensional tasting side dish.
Not exactly a restaurant, Gray’s Papaya is a New York city classic. When your friend tells you to eat a New York hot dog on your next trip to New York, Gray’s Papaya is where you go.
The hot dog I shared with my sister had a semi-shriveled skin. The meat inside seemed to shy away from the outside and bunch up in the middle. Overall, the hotdog was leaps ahead of the average hot dog found at places like Costco.