We’ve all had experiences at our local malls and the less than fantastic food they have at the food halls that they provide the general public. Many of them are low in price but not exactly pungent when it comes to flavor and value so the savvy foodie like myself is left wondering what else is out there. Well, for the Manhattanite in all of us I found something that you will love in many different ways. This is City Kitchen, which is located inside the super fabulous Row Hotel on 8th Avenue between 44th and 45th Street. Hotel guests and Times Square locals are having the unique opportunity to indulge in some of the city’s most desired and buzzed about food concepts – without having to travel too far to taste them. City Kitchen brings to Row NYC a collection of restaurant trailblazers to continue the evolution that has made this property one of the most exciting to open in Times Square to date.
I was fortunate enough to stay in The Row Hotel before as a review for Manhattan Digest, and was thrilled overall with the incredible art landscape of the room and hotel itself and how it really had a great duality with modern and classic architecture overall. The addition of City Kitchen really is the cherry on top of the already delicious pie the property itself has to offer. City Kitchen is a nostalgic nod to the classic working kitchen and features industrial décor such as white subway tile, marble, reclaimed wood, gingham, and statement Italian glass chandeliers. Fixed steel and turquoise leather stools along the floor-to-ceiling windows provides customers with an unobstructed view of Times Square. The unique brand and personality of the assorted purveyors will be reflected within their own space, making City Kitchen as diverse as the streets of New York.
The fabulous thing about City Kitchen, given that warm weather is upon us, is that a lot of the food that each vendor provides really translates to what we are expecting for the spring and summer seasons. So here is what I would recommend trying at each of the vendors as me and a friend went over the weekend and had a field day with all of them. In the mood for sushi? Try Asuki and check out their Manhattan or Tuna Lover roll. ilili box skews Mediterranean with a variety of really delicious wraps and salads. A good combo would be their Duck Shawarma with their Green Lemonade. The flavor in the Shawarma is an explosion whereas the Green Lemonade has a nice kick of cucumber in it which blends well with the sweetness of the drink itself. Gabriela’s Taqueria is your one stop for all things tacos, tacos and more tacos. Even breakfast ones! Try a classic and go with their steak taco. Simple, cooked well and the perfect bite for your afternoon meal. Kuro Obi is your Ramen headquarters, and a great place to stop by on a rainy day. Try the classic Ramen with pork belly. Just remember the two words- pork belly. Enough said.
Luke’s is renowned for one thing- Lobster Rolls. Just get that, trust me. It was hands down the best lobster roll I have ever had. Pair it with a cold soda, pickle and chips and you are good to go. I have actually reviewed Whitman’s for Manhattan Digest before, so naturally I was pumped to try them out again as they are big on their burgers. The PB&B Burger (Peanut Butter & Bacon). An odd combo at first but when you try it the flavors really blend well together.
Now if you are looking for a quick snack, there are three vendors there that fit that bill as well. Sigmund’s boast a wide array of my favorite snack- pretzels. I would try the truffle cheddar as it is warm and soft on the inside with the truffle cheddar adding a great flavor on the outside. For dessert, Dough is the place to go as they have a great line of doughnuts with unique profiles. The Chocolate Nib was more than enough for me, as it came topped with a ton of delicious chocolate. Want something a little lighter? Try Wooley’s shaved ice, which comes in leche, coffee and green tea and has a bunch of great toppings. A delicious ending to a wonderful experience.
I would recommend trying at least one of these places out as it would fulfill any food palate out there. For more information, check out their official site. Happy eating everyone!