Somtum Der

Interior

Somtum Der
85 Avenue A
New York NY 10009
(212) 260-8570
Official Site

When the acclaimed Bangkok’s restaurant Somtum Der expanded to New York City almost two years ago it added another Thai eatery to an already saturated market. But this is not your typical “Thai” restaurant that the majority of Americans and New Yorkers are accustomed to. It specializes in Isaan cuisine, or Northeastern Thai fare, where food is spicier, pungent and has a distinct taste that is very similar to neighboring Laos but without the European influence.

The restaurant is open daily throughout the day and offers diners a wide array of small plates ranging from $8 to $15 dollars and meant to be shared. A group of four can easily sample through the menu.

At Somtum Der the dishes come out of the kitchen when ready in no particular order, but usually salads are the first ones to arrive at the table. “Tum Poo–Plara”, an original Isan papaya salad in fermented fish sauce and field crabs was strongly flavored with acidulous and spiciness. On the other hand, the “Tum Suo Der” Der styled papaya salad with sweet chili sauce had a contrast of sweet and fieriness. The salads were freshly made and prepared simply while using mainly raw ingredients.

Soup like “Gaeng Om Kai”, a chicken soup with local herbs Isan style had an aroma of deliciousness. Its broth was infused with different herbs, vegetables, and chopped chicken meat with the bones producing an intense flavor.

Gaeng Om Kai

The “Larb Hed Kao Kuo” made with minced mushroom salad with peppermint, lime, and freshly roasted rice brought a lot of heat in every bite. The “Koi Goong”, prawns mixed with fresh herbs and minced roasted rice. The prawns were soft boiled which allowed the meat to absorb the flavors of other ingredients. “Yum Crispy Leaf Fish”, where chunks of crisp leaf fish are bathed in a spicy dressing of onions, scallions, and chili peppers. This was a tasty dish that resembled a salad.

“Sa Poak Kai Der”, Der styled deep fried chicken thighs was a favorite. The perfectly seasoned chicken was fried with a deep crunch while keeping the meat moist and juicy. “Nue Rong Hai Der + Khao Ji” house special grilled marinated beef had a beautiful sweet taste that was partnered with the tender chopped meat. A similar preparation and flavor with the beef skewers but this time with a splash of coconut milk provided another form of sweetness.

Beef Skewers

The rice and noodle selection was a little bigger in portion than the rest. Noodle dishes like the “Pad Thai Mun Poo”, a special pad Thai made with crab meat and crab paste with home style sauce had a sprinkle of salinity and crabby flavor. The spicy fried rice with crisp leaf fish known as “Khao Pad Nam Prik Pao Pia SaLid” was appetizing and filling. The rice had a good flavor and pieces of fried fish were sprinkled throughout.

Pad Thai Mun Poo Khao Pad Nam Prik Pao Pia Sa Lid

The food is very good, although the level of fieriness in every plate is not for the faint of heart; it will definitely clear nasal congestion and bring tears to the eyes. Unlike Indian, Korean and Latin cuisine that uses heat to bring out the unique flavor of its dishes, Thai cuisine uses Thai Chili’s, also known as “Bird Eye Chili’s”, where the heat is powerful but not long lasting. Depending on how much you can handle, the staff is willing to adjust it to your taste. The spiciness does not overpower the strong and bold flavors at Somtum Der but rather coexists with it. After having returned multiple times ordering new and familiar dishes, there is a level of consistency that the kitchen delivers. Not to mention the reasonable price tab.

Interior Restaurant

Settling in the East Village (or Alphabet City to be precise), Somtum Der’s casual vibes fit the neighborhood. Matched by a simple interior of concrete flooring, blond communal tables in the middle with the rest of the space filled by two topped style tables. A salad bar next to the communal tables is where the papaya salads are created. The ceiling lights are covered in bamboo baskets and a counter top with steel red highchairs in the front look out to Avenue A. The restaurants hip young patrons are bumping to the sounds of the Wu Tang Clan while chowing down on their papaya salad. Also, the informal service equals the vibe. The staff is polite and helpful especially in suggesting dishes for those having Isaan cuisine for the first time.

Salad Bar

After a few months of opening, Somtum Der was reviewed and awarded a star by the New York Times and since then Isaan cuisine has been getting a lot of exposure. The 2015 New York Michelin Guide awarded a star to Isaan restaurants, Pok Pok NY and Queens, Zabb Elee. Prior to visiting Somtum Der, I’m shameful to admit that I’ve never had Isaan food, but now I can proudly say that I am a fan.

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Prima

Interior

Prima
58 East 1 St
New York, NY 10003
(646) 559-4823
Official Site

*This venue is now closed.

There are some chefs today that tend to be over indulgent, especially with fish. They tend to utilize too many components in one dish. It’s a damn shame that the savory taste of a beautiful piece of tuna or salmon becomes lost within the purees, sauces, and caviars. Sometimes all it requires is simplicity, in which a small seafood restaurant in the East Village called Prima and its talented chef David Malbequi has perfected.

Chef Malbequi, a veteran of Daniel Boulud and Lourent Tourendel restaurant group, has mastered the art of cooking fish with very little ingredients. Using salt, pepper, and fresh herbs as a compliment, he allows the natural flavor to be the main attraction. His precision and execution are flawless.

The entrées at Prima consist of mainly fish, while the appetizers are divided in cooked and raw plates. For the oyster purist, you will be delighted to know that they offer five kinds of this delicacy.

 

 

 

 

Entrée’s that I’ve had the pleasure to enjoy at this restaurant are the delightful Red Snapper and Durade. Seasoned and cooked perfectly, the skin sides had a crispy texture while the inside of both fish were soft and moist. After devouring the entrée’s, an aphrodisiac moment kicks in asking myself “how can a simple dish be so delicious?”

The Tempura Hake that was named by Time Out NY as one of the best seafood dishes in New York City 2012 was their rendition to fish and chips. Two pieces of hake made with a special tempura batter that provided a different kind of crunch. The Sea Scallops, the only non-fish entrée in the menu were another simple, but titillating dish. The server suggested squeezing the lemon over the scallops; this bought out the sweetness and enhanced the taste magnificently.

Although there are homemade sauces that are paired with each entrée but I suggest staying away from them and have the dishes as is.

The appetizers are just as good as the entrées starting with the Octopus. Its tender meat with olives and lemon has a wonderful flavor that’s balanced by the feta cheese. Then there is Sardines Rillettes, a Portuguese sardine served in a can with olive oil and bread. Quality canned sardines that the Iberian Peninsula is known for and not your typical ones that are on the shelf at Gristedes.

 

 

In one of my visits to Prima, I ordered the Crab Cakes just to do a comparison of those that I’ve had in New York City. This was way better than many of the restaurants here.

Other than the excellent food that comes out the kitchen, Prima also has an outstanding cocktail program by Greg Sieder of The Summit Bar. This is the only restaurant where I bother not to look the wine list and just go with cocktails with my meal.

Each drink creation is well thought out and the numerous mixtures blend well together. There are sweet concoctions like the GP Spritz and The Last Cocktail, as well as potent manly drinks like The Mancini and their own version of Negroni called Lion In London. There are also aromatic and refreshing drinks like The Street .

 

 

Situated along East 1st, Prima has a casual neighborhood vibe. It’s a café in the morning where locals get their caffeine fix while working on their laptops. At night, the place morphs into a full service restaurant with a charming atmosphere and always welcoming, unpretentious staff.

This small space is dominated by marble top bar tables that are spaced evenly and paired with steel high chairs that lead to a small bar in the back with a semi open kitchen where the Chef and his crew can be seen hard at work. The exposed brick walls and painted concrete flooring completes the industrial chic interior of the restaurant.

Having visited Prima multiple times in the past few months they have stayed consistent with their food, drinks, and service. Impeccable all across the board is all that I can say.

For individuals who are ordering medicines online, there are several significant factors that must be elaborate. Internet is an ideal practice to get medicaments. Several medicaments are antifungal medicines. There are at least some medicaments for each sicknesses. Levitra is a medication prescribed to treat few ailments. What do you have to regard about cialis vs viagra? When you buy remedies like Levitra you should ask your pharmacist about viagra vs cialis. Many drugstores describe it as viagra or cialis. Many probably sure the forcefulness of Levitra is well documented. In addition, there are some of explanations and pharmacists are ordinarily able to pinpoint your problem through biological tests. Ordinarily the treatment options may include erectile disfunction medicaments or counseling. Your generic is for you only. Never give your drugs to other men even if their status appears to be the same as yours.

Yuba Restaurant

Sushi CounterYuba Restaurant
105 E 9th St
New York, NY 1000
(212) 777-8188
Official Site

It’s not hard to find a good Japanese restaurant in New York City, especially if you’re in East Village where there’s an unlimited amount of cheap sushi and ramen places flocked by NYU students on a budget. Then there is Yuba Restaurant, a restaurant that might be a tad too pricey for the neighborhood’s inhabitants but it’s where sushi aficionados can indulge in quality nagiri’s and rolls.

Located on one of the only few blocks where pedestrian traffic is limited in the neighborhood, this modern Japanese restaurant can be easily overlooked while walking along East 9th St. A sign hanging above is all that shows that this place exists. There are a few intrigued passersby that will take a peek inside its large store front windows.

The restaurants simple interior and absence of music from its speakers gives the impression of a relaxed atmosphere were diners can have a peaceful conversation in a normal tone of voice. The décor is so uncomplicated that it seems almost dull. Dark wooden tables are spread throughout the space; paintings of Brooklyn Bridge adorn the wall and a sushi bar located toward the back. Completing the space are round lights on the ceiling that illuminates the surrounding area appropriately. The long leather tufted back bench along its walls and bar on the opposite side looked as if it has never seen an alcohol service.

 

 

Yuba Restaurant opened in 2010 by two of Masa Takayama’s disciples, George Ruan and Jack Wei. This restaurant is no stranger to incorporating luxury ingredients. There is foie gras, caviar, and truffles in their menu, but unlike other high end sushi spots in New York, the prices here are decent that it makes you wonder if they are operating at a loss. Their omakase starts at $50 per person which consists of 12 pieces of sushi that includes special pieces with fish shipped directly from Japan and the a la carte sushi is priced between $3 and $6 per piece. The menu is extensive, with selections of small, large, and hot and cold plates which can be ordered if you’re not in the mood for sushi. Special lunch sets of sushi, sashimi, and rolls range from $11 to $15 are also available. The sets include the restaurants version of miso soup, made with yuba (tofu skin).

 

 

Sushi pieces like the medium raw wagyu beef, squid with a lemon zest, and the octopus were very good. There are also enjoyable small plates like the crunchy and flavor packed Sweet Corn Tempura and the servers’ recommendation of Layered Yuba Pouch with mushrooms braised in a thick Asian sauce.

The drink list is nothing to brag about, but good enough to say they have a nice selection of sake that compliments the food and Japanese beer that is also available. Don’t even bother with the wine, especially if one is a connoisseur.

On my recent visits at Yuba Restaurant, I ordered the sushi omakase for dinner and sat at the sushi bar where I was able to witness the sushi chef’s artistry. He began with a small plate of pickled vegetables, preparing my palate for a night of aquatic goodness. Then one by one the sushi is placed in front of me, no extra soy sauce needed as he glazed them each perfectly while the chef and owner, George Ruan, looked on. Just when I thought the meal had reached greatness from the first six pieces, to my surprise, it was just the beginning. The second half of the omakase was amazing. It started with a snapper with truffle, an off the menu item. The blend of the sharp truffle taste with the flavor and texture of the blow torched snapper was memorable, followed by salmon, then tuna, and afterwards the mackerel and uni. He then ended with an Anago Sea Eel that melts in the mouth. After the meal, the friendly Chef Ruan freely chatted about his days at Masa and his experience as a sushi chef. It was an interesting and fun conversation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

An absolute East Village gem, the staff make you feel at home, especially the manager, Nina, who’s welcoming and warm attitude is an attribute to this unpretentious restaurant.

The fish that is used are fresh, clean, and of the highest quality. The focus and the precision of the chefs are showcased in their food. If this restaurant was located outside of New York City this would have been buzzing in the media; but then again this is New York where high quality sushi restaurants are everywhere and some are even comparable to the very best in Japan. Yuba Restaurant can be easily lost in the conversation of the top sushi restaurants in New York. High end food, casual settings, and prices that won’t break the bank, that’s Yuba Restaurant.

For individuals who are ordering medicines online, there are several significant factors that must be elaborate. Internet is an ideal practice to get medicaments. Several medicaments are antifungal medicines. There are at least some medicaments for each sicknesses. Levitra is a treatment set to treat few ailments. What do you have to consider about cialis vs viagra? When you buy remedies like Levitra you should ask your druggist about viagra vs cialis. Many drugstores describe it as viagra or cialis. Many probably sure the forcefulness of Levitra is well documented. In complement, there are some of explanations and pharmacists are ordinarily able to pinpoint your problem through biological tests. Ordinarily the treatment options may turn on erectile dysfunction medicaments or counseling. Your generic is for you only. Never give your drugs to other people even if their condition appears to be the same as yours.

The Bean East Village

The Bean

With two locations, and a third opening soon, The Bean is one of the few local independent cafe’s here in Manhattan. A mix of cafe and internet cafe, this small community coffee shop has a comfortable and relaxed atmosphere.

Both cafe’s are equally popular and busy, but the East Village location is a favorite. Once located down the block east of the current location on 1st avenue, The Bean was booted out to make way for another Starbucks. Although it hasn’t suffered from the franchises bullying, regulars frequent business from early morning until closing keeping a steady stream of patrons.

The Bean East Village gives off a warm, homey feel with it’s large windows and variety of comfortable seating, the corner location creates a spacious and roomy place to sit back and relax. Bench seats decorated with colorful plush pillows and small marble round tables line against the floor to ceiling windows on your right as you walk into the main entrance. A large table, etched impressively with spices give additional seating for those with laptops, and toward the back two well used love seats, coffee table, and high-back sitting chairs give this area a feel of sitting in your own home with friends just chatting. A small internet bar is also available for patrons use, while cool art works are hanging on the walls throughout the space.

 

 

At any given day the café is packed with East Villagers along with their dogs and young college students working on their thesis (NYU is a few blocks North). The staff here are courteous and efficient, and look just like they’d also be sitting in the cafe enjoying a cup on their day off.

 

 

 

 

The Bean is mostly known for it’s coffee, but also serves a vast array of pastries, sandwiches, and signature teas and Latte’s. They also have pastries and sweets for the Vegan . The Dirty Chai Latte, their signature drink is a must have. It consists of a Chai Latte with a shot of espresso. The espresso compliments the sweetness of the Chai as the steamed milk regulates the latte overall. It makes for a perfectly balanced latte, although it was far from the “life changing event” that the lady behind the counter told me it would be, nevertheless it was delicious.

With a great atmosphere, unpretentious environment, friendly staff and most of all great coffee. The Bean in the East Village is a treasure that East Villagers possess. It is a café that locals can brag about to their friends and families. I don’t think you can do that with your local Starbucks.

The Bean
54 Second Ave.
New York, NY 10003
(212) 510-7714
Official Site

For individuals who are ordering medicines online, there are several significant factors that must be considered. Internet is an ideal practice to get medicaments. Several medicaments are antifungal medicines. There are at least some medicaments for each sicknesses. Levitra is a treatment prescribed to treat few ailments. What do you have to consider about cialis vs viagra? When you buy remedies like Levitra you should ask your pharmacist about viagra vs cialis. Many drugstores describe it as viagra or cialis. Many probably sure the forcefulness of Levitra is well documented. In addition, there are some of explanations and pharmacists are ordinarily able to pinpoint your problem through biological tests. Ordinarily the treatment options may turn on erectile disfunction medicaments or counseling. Your generic is for you only. Never give your drugs to other men even if their status appears to be the same as yours.

bahr | che

bahr | che
26 Astor Pl
(between Broadway & Lafayette St)
Manhattan, NY 10003
(212) 260-2220
Website

The wine bar bahr|che, located in the St Marks/ Cooper Square area may be a bit hard to find but once discovered it’s a nice change of pace from the typical area bars with dollar shots and packed with NYU college students. To avoid spending hours on the search, be sure to find bahr|che on the ground floor of the Gwathmey Siegel building, behind the Chase Bank.

Bahr|che is small, “L” shaped with high ceilings and a modern interior design by Richard Bloch (Bloch is also responsible for such notable NYC restaurants as Masa, Bar Masa and Dovetail to name few.) The walls are covered with square shaped light maple wood panels arranged on top of each other in awkward angles resulting with some wood pieces artfully sticking out. The dark colored bar has an array of wines perfectly arranged on shelves that reach the ceiling. Toward bahr|che’s rear is a brighter section with a view of the street. The area is complete with red semi-circular booths and round tables.

 

 

This wine bar also specializes in cheeses and charcuterie but still serves good food for lunch and dinner and weekend brunch. The portions are very small and will leave you yearning for more.On my first visit to bahr|che I had the three cheese selection: Latur from Piemonte, Italy – made from cow, sheep and goat milk; Tomme Crayeuse from the Rhone Alpes of France – made from cow milk; and Cabot Clothbound from Greensboro, Vermont. I’m normally not a goat cheese lover, but the Latur was very good it did not have the particular goat cheese smell/taste that I find unpleasant. The cheeses complimented the fruity taste of the Riesling Spatlese wine that I ordered. I also had their Lobster Mac and Cheese which was also very good. Although the food was very tasty, the wine selection is the highlight of this place. With over 1,500 to choose from there’s always something new to try. Their wines from every region of the globe are available either by carafe or bottle at reasonable New York City prices.

 

 

The atmosphere at this place is subdued and very relaxed, a great way to unwind after work or end of the day. At night it’s romantic and intimate with soft music, dim lights and candles on the table.

Over all bahr|che is a pretty solid place, a great selection of wines, great food and a comfortable atmosphere. After my first visit, I was sold on this place and kept on coming back for drinks. It’s great to start or end the evening for a pre or post dinner drinks. Whenever you’re in the area and just want to relax and enjoy a glass of wine, make sure to visit bhar|che and don’t forget your GPS, you might need it to find it.

For individuals who are ordering medicines online, there are several significant factors that must be elaborate. Internet is an ideal practice to get medicaments. Several medicaments are antifungal medicines. There are at least some medicaments for each sicknesses. Levitra is a medication preassigned to treat few ailments. What do you have to regard about cialis vs viagra? When you buy remedies like Levitra you must ask your pharmacist about viagra vs cialis. Many drugstores describe it as viagra or cialis. Many probably sure the forcefulness of Levitra is well documented. In complement, there are some of explanations and pharmacists are ordinarily able to pinpoint your problem through biological tests. Ordinarily the treatment options may include erectile disfunction medicaments or counseling. Your generic is for you only. Never give your drugs to other folk even if their state appears to be the same as yours.