Top Notch Thai Off The Beaten Path at Purple Ginger in the East Village
Top Notch Thai Off The Beaten Path at Purple Ginger in the East Village

Top Notch Thai Off The Beaten Path at Purple Ginger in the East Village

*Editor’s Note 10/15/15: I’m sad to report that Purple Ginger has permanently closed.

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In NYC, people love to wait in lines. Brunch lines often last over an hour and I’m not down with that. I like to have places that I can get into on a moment’s notice.

I’ve been going to Purple Ginger since it opened but it’s perpetually empty. This has nothing to do with the food, it’s top notch. It has everything to do with their location on 6th and B which clearly doesn’t get enough foot traffic for a restaurant like this to survive. Even on a Saturday at 12:30 in the East Village during peak brunching hours, it was pretty much empty. What I’m saying is, go. Because with food so consistently delicious and generously portioned, I don’t want them to fold.

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Seriously Soothing Soba Noodle Soup at Cocoron in Nolita
Seriously Soothing Soba Noodle Soup at Cocoron in Nolita

Seriously Soothing Soba Noodle Soup at Cocoron in Nolita

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Located on a strange, dirty, vacant segment of town somewhere between NoHo, Nolita, and the Bowery you’ll find the bright, orange signage for Cocoron.

Inside, you’ll find some of the cleanest, most comforting food in NY that’ll leave you feeling fresh and healthy after. Inside is a tiny, bustling shop with two-tops, a communal table, and noodle bar seating. Despite the rapid turnover in the shop it’s still quite a nice experience that would be good enough to work as a casual, low-key date night or a cheap eats cold-weather lunch.

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Ethnic Brunch with Asian Influenced Barbecue & Cocktails at Fatty ‘Cue
Ethnic Brunch with Asian Influenced Barbecue & Cocktails at Fatty ‘Cue

Ethnic Brunch with Asian Influenced Barbecue & Cocktails at Fatty ‘Cue

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*Editor’s Note: I’m sad to report that this restaurant is not longer open.

On this hungover Sunday morning, we were deciding where to meet up with my parents for brunch. I’m pretty particular about brunch since I don’t like waiting in lines and don’t want ordinary breakfast food I could make myself at home for a quarter of the price. After some quick thinking, Amy and I remembered the excellent dinner we previously had at Fatty ‘Cue and figured their Asian inflected menu would probably serve as a excellent and interesting brunch spot.

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Mike Winston’s Best Bites of 2013

Given the number of insanely delicious things I’ve eaten over the past year, selecting the best of the bunch is a very difficult task. Over on Foodspotting I’ve released a long version that’s over 200 items long which includes every single dish jaw-dropping dish from the last year. Here, instead, I’ve chosen the very best in select categories. In no particular order, let’s begin!
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The Best Asian Noodle Soups in Manhattan

Now that the weather is cooling off and Winter Is Coming, I find myself craving a huge, bowl of steaming hot noodle soup. As a lover of all Asian foods, more often than not, when I want soup I go for one of the many Asian varieties. Whether it’s hand-pulled, knife cut, needle noodles, ramen, pho, soba, udon, wonton, or something else there’s a huge variety of flavors and textures you can have when it comes to Asian noodles soups. The following is a list of the places I’d go if it’s feeling dreary outside and I’m in the mood for a comforting bowl of Asian noodle soup.

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Amazing Cocktails & Asian Inspired Barbecue at Fatty ‘Cue in NYC
Amazing Cocktails & Asian Inspired Barbecue at Fatty ‘Cue

Amazing Cocktails & Asian Inspired Barbecue at Fatty ‘Cue in NYC

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*Editor’s Note: I’m sad to report that this restaurant is not longer open.

The scenario: a random Tuesday, impromptu date night, day-of, no reservations. Sure, you could wrack your brain and come up with a place, but I chose to use ScoutMob to do the work for me. For those, unfamiliar, ScoutMob is a mobile app and newsletter that provides deals at carefully hand-picked venues without having to pay anything upfront. It alleviates the risk of coupon purchasing that is often associated with Groupon and its competitors. After scrolling through the Android app, my girlfriend and I spotted Zak Pelaccio’s Fatty ‘Cue, a place we had already talked about wanting to check out. It’s settled, we walk the four blocks from our apartment over to the restaurant and are seated promptly.

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