Author Topic: Di Fara, Totonno's, Kesté, Motorino, et al...4/18/13 - 4/21/13  (Read 1437 times)

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Online Mmmph

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Went to NYC for a few days this past week. My GF and I had a ton of fun.

Stayed at the Wyndham Garden Chinatown. New hotel (November 2012) at Bowery & Hester.
Highly recommended.

Broadway:
Wicked - Good
Kinky Boots - GREAT! Highly recommended.

Food:
Shanghai Cafe Deluxe- Soup Dumplings (Xioalongbao) and Broccoli in Garlic Sauce.
We go here everytime. Better than Joe's Shanghai, really.
Highly recommended.

Le Marais - Assiette De Charcutailles, Onglet À L’Echalote, Demi-Poulet Rôti, Frites, and the house red and white.
I love French food. This place gets mixed reviews, but the food is great and I've never been disappointed. Excellent service this time, as well.
Highly recommended.

Salvation Taco - Tacos al Pastor and Modelo Especial
Pre theater snack...Six tacos and two beers for $20. In and out in 24 minutes
Highly recommended.

Momofuku Ssäm  Bar - East Beach Blonde Oysters, Santa Barbara Uni, Steamed Pork Belly Buns, BBQ Buns, and a bottle of Koeler Ruprecht Pinot Blanc
This place is another regular stop for us. Oh, those steamed buns. They're on my death row, last meal list.
Highly recommended.

.................
Pizze:

Di Fara - Two Regular Slices and Two Square Slices
We were the second people there Friday morning. Arrived on the Q train at 11:20 and they opened at 12:05.
The regular slice was...eh, OK. That's really the best I can say, but the square slice was rather good. Excellent. I'll try and clone it.
Highly recommended.

Totonno's - Plain Cheese Pizza
Wow...I was underwhelmed here. The slices needed doctoring (Garlic, Hot Pepper Flakes ) to bring them along. Great Crust, though.

Motorino East Village - We were the first people there at 11:15am Saturday. Nobody else there when they baked our pizze. Poor oven management for two pies (baked separately)....But,
Roasted Mortadella - Wow!
Pizza al’ Uovo (Fior de Latte, Fried Farm Eggs, Smoked Pancetta, Basil, Pecorino, Chili Oil). Mmm, a treat only served for weekend Brunch
Cherrystone Calm Pizza (Fior de Latte, Oreganata Butter, Lemon, E.V. Olive Oil). It was great, but...Interestingly, mine is better.
Still...Highly recommended.

Kesté Pizza & Vino -
Ortolana (Tomato Sauce, Homemade Mozzarella, Mushrooms, Artichokes, E.V. Olive Oil) Strange, but good.
Padrino (Tomato sauce, Caciocavallo Ragusano, Soppressata, Gaeta Olives, Basil, E.V. Olive Oil) Bold. Salty. Great!
Highly recommended.
.................


Sunny Saturday Afternoon:
23rd Annual Upper West Side Street Fair (It's just like every other street fair in Manhattan, except the Murray Hill street fair aroun Memorial Day)
 
Rainy Friday Afternoon Movie:
Oblivion - Yecchhh. Imagine every high-tech sci-fi movie from the last 25 years all rolled into The Last Samurai 2154.

Dive Bars:
Rudy's Bar and Grill - 9th Ave., Hell's Kitchen - Great prices. Tossing out drunks since Babe Ruth wore pinstripes
Iggy's Keltic Lounge  - LES, Ludlow St. - Loud, Great Jukebox
Thirsty Scholar - 2nd Ave, East Village - Low Key, Heavy Pour!

A great trip. Forgive the iPhone photos.

Pics:
1. Dom Demarco adding basil to our square pie
2. Totonno's Pizza
3. Kesté Ortolana
4. Kesté Padrino
5. Motorino Clam and Egg Pizze
« Last Edit: April 22, 2013, 03:02:18 PM by Mmmph »
Sono venuto, ho visto, ho mangiato


Offline TXCraig1

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Re: NYC 4/18/13 - 4/21/13
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2013, 11:32:56 AM »
Better than Joe's Shanghai, really.

That's quite an endorsement.
Pizza is not bread.

Offline Serpentelli

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Re: NYC 4/18/13 - 4/21/13
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2013, 12:46:08 PM »
Hey JJ,

You sure did it up! Great reviews --- I'll be sure to print it out when I'm up there this summer.

Based on what you're saying I might also amend my trip to "pass" on Di Fara.

Were those Motorino cornicione too charred to eat? If those (motorino pies) were my pies I would tell people "sorry, I burnt this a little"

I need to get your clam pie recipe. Shucked and chopped a bag this weekend --- they're waiting to be turned into a sauce for linguine tonite.

As far as musicals go --- Wicked is my favorite all time. We'll be seeing Matilda this summer. A great score! And locally, be sure to catch my 10 year old daughter appearing as "Young Cosette" in Les Mis at Thalian Hall in June!

John K
I'm not wearing hockey pads!

Online Mmmph

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Re: Di Fara, Totonno's, Kesté, Motorino, et al...4/18/13 - 4/21/13
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2013, 03:30:59 PM »
Motorino was a bit overdone on one side, but most of it was OK. As I mentioned...Poor oven mamagement. We were the only people there and these pies were baked seperately. A bit of a disappointment. I'll still recommend Motorino.
Sono venuto, ho visto, ho mangiato

Offline misterschu

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Re: Di Fara, Totonno's, Kesté, Motorino, et al...4/18/13 - 4/21/13
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2013, 11:09:15 AM »
Great reviews!  I have to agree with you about Joe's Shanghai... they're soup dumplings are vastly overrated...and overpriced.  I'm surprised by your choice of Le Marais, seeing as it is a Kosher place, you end up paying some overhead.  Ssam Bar is great, went there a couple weeks ago, great food and great cocktails. 

You did well at Di Fara's to try both types of slices.  I guess they were pretty fresh since you got there as they opened, but I always get a whole pie when I'm there.  And you're right, the square pie is amazing, miles above the circle. 

I was also surprised when I went to Totonno's (2011, I think) to find the pie as it was.  With all the hype around the place I expected to be blown away but ended up just with an above average coal pie. 

Motorino is my second favorite spot in the city.  It's convenient and in a fun area.  I've been pleased with the consistency every time I've been.  They tend to be a bit drier (no soggy center) than other neapolitan places.

Your pies from Keste look much better than the pies I had there last time I went.  My pies were not charred well and had little bubble to the cornicione.   The other times I have been there the pies had been better.

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: Di Fara, Totonno's, Kesté, Motorino, et al...4/18/13 - 4/21/13
« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2013, 11:19:02 AM »
Great reviews!  I have to agree with you about Joe's Shanghai... they're soup dumplings are vastly overrated...and overpriced. 

What do they cost at Joe's and Shanghai Cafe respectively?
Pizza is not bread.

Online Mmmph

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Re: Di Fara, Totonno's, Kesté, Motorino, et al...4/18/13 - 4/21/13
« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2013, 01:54:04 PM »
They're priced identically.
Pork 4.95 for 8
Crab and pork 6.95 for 8
Sono venuto, ho visto, ho mangiato

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: Di Fara, Totonno's, Kesté, Motorino, et al...4/18/13 - 4/21/13
« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2013, 02:14:31 PM »
They're priced identically.
Pork 4.95 for 8
Crab and pork 6.95 for 8

I know that. The question was not intended for you - nor was it a question...
Pizza is not bread.

Offline misterschu

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Re: Di Fara, Totonno's, Kesté, Motorino, et al...4/18/13 - 4/21/13
« Reply #8 on: May 09, 2013, 10:37:27 AM »
The midtown Joe's sells them for 7.60 and 8.95

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: Di Fara, Totonno's, Kesté, Motorino, et al...4/18/13 - 4/21/13
« Reply #9 on: May 09, 2013, 11:29:38 AM »
The midtown Joe's sells them for 7.60 and 8.95

Hardly a relevant comparison.
Pizza is not bread.


Offline misterschu

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Re: Di Fara, Totonno's, Kesté, Motorino, et al...4/18/13 - 4/21/13
« Reply #10 on: May 09, 2013, 01:44:34 PM »
Not sure I understand the aggression... I haven't been the the chinatown location and had no reason to believe prices would be different.


 

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