When you rank as the second best bakery in New York City on TripAdvisor, and the 2nd best place to eat out of over 12,000 locations in the best city in the world, chances are you are doing something pretty epic and right with your business. Well, the hype is real, as Levain Bakery reigns supreme in The Upper West Side as one of the best damn bakeries in NYC… period. With getting press up the wazoo including appearances on the top NYC affiliates such as CBS 2 and NBC 4’s “New York Live”, oh, and… OPRAH… Levain has developed themselves as a force to be reckoned with in the sweets world, inside and out of the city. So what makes this place so damn good to where the lines are literally out the door to get a taste of all the tasty treats they are concocting? [Read more…] about Believe the Hype about How Awesome Levain Bakery Is
In the three years of running Manhattan Digest, I have had the utmost pleasure and great ability to review some of the best restaurants in and out of Manhattan. As I am always looking to expand my repertoire when it comes to the next best thing, I stumbled upon the largest travel site in the world, TripAdvisor, to see what their users thought topped the charts of the best restaurants in New York City. Comfortably sitting in their top twenty five out of 16,000 restaurants is Chalk Point Kitchen, which is located on Broome Street right off of Canal. After reading tons of amazing reviews such as “Fresh, innovative and delectable in every way” and “Farm to table delicious”, I knew I had to go in and see what all the fuss was about. So Monday night I grabbed my friend Neil and we took the 1 train down to Canal to the other CPK. We were beyond thrilled with the experience.
Chalk Point Kitchen thrives itself on healthy, farm to table (or market to table) food for you to devour in a quaint, 70 seat space. Owned by restauranteur Matt Levine and his IndieFORK team, with Michelin-starred chef Joe Isidori in the kitchen, the name Chalk Point comes from the following, per the site– “When the Dutch arrived in Manhattan, the island was surrounded by great oyster beds that fed the Lenape Indians and delighted the oyster-loving Dutch. The islands we know as Ellis and Liberty were Little Oyster Island and Great Oyster Island to the Dutch, who might have been sitting on half the world’s supply. For the next two centuries, the oyster and New York would be inseparable. The Collect Pond (or Fresh Water Pond) was a body of fresh water near the southern end of Manhattan Island in New York City, occupying approximately 48 acres and as deep as 60 feet. For the first two hundred years of European settlement of Manhattan, Collect Pond was the main water supply for the growing New York City. The pond, fed by an underground spring, was located in a valley, with Bayard Mount (at 110 feet, the tallest hill in lower Manhattan) to the northeast and Kalck Hoek (Dutch for Chalk Point, named for the numerous oyster shell middens left by the Native American inhabitants) to the west-located in close proximity and steps away from 527 Broome Street, our present location. Naming our restaurant after the “Chalk Point” not only pays homage to the history of our location, but also gives insight into our style of food, which couples sustainability and high-level composition with approachability.”
With that being said, these are the dishes that I highly recommend that you try when going in. First off, their Bar Harbor Mussels with Joe’s kimchi and house smoked bacon. The broth alone in the mussels is to die for and is even more delicious when you dip the bread they supply you with in it itself. The mussels have a great flavor to it, which is enhanced by the kimchi and bacon. A big part of their menu is the “Vegetables To Share” which highlights just how fresh and innovative Chalk Point Kitchen can really be. I would recommend their Roasted Heirloom Carrots with feta, black truffle and lemon and their Butternut Squash (pictured above) are two amazing choices. The Butternut Squash actually tastes like a unique version of a sweet potato, and the carrots have such a zing to them with the extra flavors drizzled on top that it makes for a wonderful start to a meal.
For the entree, I would recommend their Farm Raised Asian Catfish Misoyaki with Kernan Farms spicy long beans, crispy ginger & housemade citrus ponzu. The catfish literally melts in your mouth and the long beans work as a great pair to compliment the fish itself. Finish off your meal with the Classic Butterscotch Pudding with vanilla ice cream & duck fat popcorn. Yes, duck fat popcorn. The blend of flavors in your mouth make a great end result to an amazing meal.
Easily a 10 out of 10 in my book, and I rarely say that for anything I review. It really is such a unique and beautiful experience that I would recommend anyone going. Check out their official site for more information.
Happy Eating Everyone!