Tag Archives: txikito

Top 10 Noms of 2009

31 Dec

What is a New Year without a Top 10?  I have been blogging for exactly 325 days and have enjoyed every moment of it.  I love food… and I’m so happy that I have some very faithful readers who have joined me on this journey (THANK YOU!). With that said, here is my top 10 Noms from 2009:

10) Disney World stands out in my mind for a very memorable eating trip in 2009.  The dinner we had at Marrakash comes up often and I still can’t remember ever having a better sundae than the Ghiradelli one I had at Downtown Disney.

9) When Mike and I took the Culinary Walking Tour of Greenwich Village, we didn’t really know what to expect. It wound up being great for both food (we have gone back to these places a few times since then) and history. 

8) I actually wound up going to Becco twice this year (Becco 1 and Becco 2).  They are awesome for having an unlimited pasta tasting from their three pastas of the day and a pretty extensive wine list for under $25.  But their Osso Bucco is what dreams are made of.

7) Every time I go to Koi it is amazing.  It’s one of the very, very few restaurants I can go to over and over again (even multiple times in the same week).  The crispy rice is amazing and I credit the Miso Glazed Cod with having started me eating fish for the first time.

6) The short ribs at Charles were great (well… I thought so until I had #2 on this list). We first sampled them at a nice fund-raising food festival and then I won a gift certificate by bidding $60 for a $75 gift certiciate.  The braised lamb shank was exceptional and highly recommended.

5) Quality Meats had been recommended to me time and time again.  While the steak was great, but not my favorite, the corn creme brulee was so good that I dream about it.

4) Eating at Montenapo, especially on someone else’s dime so we could order multiple courses without guilt (well, except waistline guilt), was a HUGE treat.  It’s brand new and in the middle of an area that is known to wimp out on food.  The Osso Bucco was the best I’ve ever had (even though I just had a taste of someone else’s) and the desserts were sensational.  There wasn’t a bad bite in the entire meal. 

3) I have loved Keens Steakhouse since the first time I tried it, however, the bar is especially amazing and I’m so glad Lori joined me for my first time.  That potato and steak was heavenly and more restaurants should make merengue… especially if it’s that good!

2) The number two slot goes to a yet to be blogged about meal at Bottega (Michael Chiarello’s restaurant in Napa Valley).  Why was it so good? You’ll just have to read the blog to find out!

1) My birthday dinner at WD-50 was epic. It is hands down the best meal I’ve ever had.  We went whole hog and got the full tasting menu.  Each dish was a new adventure… and not just because it looked cool.  There were such wonderful flavors in everything and I really loved this place.  #1 for the year… probably lifetime #1 to date.

Runners up:

Happy New Year Nommers!

Small Plates from Txikito

3 May

On the theme of restaurants opening in my neighborhood, just two doors down from Co (see last entry), is a new restaurant called Txikito (pronounced Chic-Kee-Toe) serving small, tapas style plates, from the Basque region of Spain.

We started with a glass of wine from the region (for me) and a glass of hard cider (for Mike).  Both were effervescent, different, and delicious.

The restaurant itself had an interesting look, with boarded walls and ceiling.  The aesthetic with very nice with the exception of what we thought to be a very out-of-place, bright blue wall in the back.  For such a rustic looking setting, it just begged the question of “why?”

We labored over ordering (and avoiding the peppers allergy) and eventually decided on the following (apologies for the picture quality as my camera battery charger is still MIA so I used my iPhone):

–          TUTERA: gratin of artichoke, Roncal, jamón

–          LEKAK: tender green beans, golden garlic, olive oil

–          BAKAILOA: house cured salt cod w/ crispy headcheese

–          TXIPIRON “ENCEBOLLADO”: squid ribbons a la plantxa
w/ sweet onion and pine nuts

–          CONCHINILLO: Suckling pig with a chimichurri sauce (that they put on the side so I could avoid the peppers)

Everything was fantastic.  The squid ribbons were the stand-out (with a pasta-like consistency), until the suckling pig came out.  I could not identify exactly what piece of the pig we were eating, but the crispy skin was unbelievable and the pork was as tender and flavorful as any I’d ever had.  It was a sizable portion too, compared to the other dishes (which were about 2-3 bites a piece).

Overall, the price wasn’t too bad for tapas (about $125 for all the dishes and 2 glasses of wine/cider each).  I am a person who really enjoys sampling many things when I go out, but I always feel a little unsatisfied by tapas as I really like to have a big, hearty meal.  If I am prepared to walk away a little hungry, but happy with my culinary adventure, I enjoy tapas a lot more.  I tried to prepare Mike for this, however, I got the distinct feeling that even though he enjoyed it, he wanted more.  So we got some Port from the Chelsea Market wine store and then stopped at Billy’s Bakery for some cupcakes and other sugary delights.  The feast in my apartment that evening was pretty epic, but all-in-all, I’m VERY happy we tried Txikito.

Total Nom Points: 8 out of 10