Friday, October 6, 2017

Weekend Eats in New York

I decided to use my airline miles and go visit my brother for the weekend in the great city of New York. Before leaving on my journey, I decided to research a couple of different restaurants and I was super excited to try them out.

Our first stop was Blue Ribbon Fried Chicken in Manhattan’s East Side. The Bromberg Brothers opened Blue Ribbon back in 2013, it is a casual restaurant that’s enthusiastic about their delicious and crispy fried chicken. Now, I know New York is not known for its fried chicken, but let me tell you that Colonel Sanders’ ain’t got nothing on this! The menu includes 9 different chicken sandwiches, delicious sides like their fries with the works, milkshakes, homemade ice cream, and yes, even salads. Another thing that impressed me was their wide selection of Boylon Soda and house made sauces. This place is worth every penny!

After lunch, we took a quick ride to China Town. After what seemed like an eternity, we found some parking (yes, we drove in the city) and made our way to Eggloo. Now if you are looking for traditional Chinese desserts with a twist, this place is for you. Eggloo uses only fresh and exotic ingredients to produce delicious desserts that are made to order. Their specialty is the Hong Kong waffle, known as Gai Dan Jai, which translates to “little eggs” in Chinese. What does that mean, well unlike traditional waffles, Hong Kong egg waffles use a sweet egg based batter to make a crispy outside and a super soft  almost cake like interior. I was recommended to go with the green tea waffle by one of the employees. Trust me it’s worth living for!

The fun doesn’t stop at Eggloo. Later that evening, back in Long Island, I was treated to a small family owned pizza place that’s been in business for over 40 years called Pat’s Family Pizzeria. What makes a good pizza? I would say love and an appreciation of fresh ingredients. At Pat’s, you get great New York style pizza, and it won’t hurt your pocket. Pat’s makes everything fresh and homemade. Their pizza dough is made fresh and they cold ferment it, that is, they store the dough in the refrigerator after forming it. That helps improve both the flavor and the browning features of the pie. When it comes time for choosing your toppings, just go nuts and pick what you like. I prefer to keep it simple and go with half cheese and half pepperoni.

Finally, Sunday came, and to end my weekend, we went to see the New York Jets beat and humiliate our beloved Miami Dolphins. However, the experience wasn’t all bad, thanks to TailgateJoe. If you are looking for a great tailgate experience at Jets home games, or if you are simply a visitor like we were, you got to do TailgateJoe. They are at every Jets home game and arrive about 5 hours before the game starts. Now, the tailgate is free and open to everyone, however if you want to partake in the all you can eat and drink awesomeness, they require you to purchase tickets online. I highly recommend you do so. The food was great and the menu changes every home game. And don’t worry beer lovers, they’ve got you covered with classics like Miller Lite as well as other local craft beer favorites. We interacted with several of the Jets fans and they were surprisingly very welcoming.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

The Miami Heat and Pincho Factory Come Together

Years ago, I suggested something that I thought would never happen. Now, not only is it happening, but it’s happening very soon! I love me some Miami Heat basketball. I still reminisce about going to the old Miami Arena to see Glen Rice, Steve Smith, and Rony Seikaly as a kid. I love me some great food as well! I remember going to see a game a few years ago with Nedal Ahmad, CEO of the franchise Pincho Factory. I said to him, “Boy it’d be nice to enjoy a double Pincho burger while seeing Wade dunk on someone.” After a good laugh, he agreed with me. Well, ladies and gentleman, what was initially meant as a joke is finally happening. The American Airlines Arena, or the “Triple A” as its better known, has announced the newest food and drink options for the upcoming Miami Heat season. Pincho Factory is among those options for the upcoming season! 

Pincho Factory will be located upstairs in section 325. The menu will include such local favorites as the “Pincho and Tostón” burger, the “Croquetesa,” steak and chicken sub, salad or pincho, fries, and tots. They’ll also offer 627 Ale, a craft beer made solely for Pincho Factory by the Wynwood Brewing Company. Think of it this way, the Heat have 41 home games! That’s 41 opportunities for us fans to enjoy some of the best burgers and pinchos in town and watch our Miami Heat live! I know I plan to make my way up the stairs, grab some burger goodness, and enjoy the Heat all season long! I hope you’ll be there to join me and LETS GO HEAT!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Miami's Top 5 Chicken Wings 2015

5) Titanic Brewery & Restaurant Oh yes Titanic. Live music, beer, karaoke, beer, jazz and blues, more beer, and a bucket full of wings! Located in Coral Gables right next to the University of Miami, Titanic is the perfect hangout spot. Whether you’re watching the big game or just enjoying a few signature drafts during happy hour with friends, Titanic as yet to disappoint me. The food is good and inexpensive and the service is always above average. But let’s talk wings… Bucket O' Wings! There’s just no way to be civilized when eating these wings! I mean unless you’re one of those sophisticated people that uses a knife and fork to eat wings, HA! Crispy oil fried wings piled high in a bucket and covered with Sriracha and Frank's Red Hot ohhhhh! What’s not to love?

4) Bulldog BBQ It’s hard to find decent BBQ in Miami, let along great BBQ. But there’s a hidden gem located on Biscayne Boulevard in North Miami called Bulldog Barbecue. Former Top Chef season 3 contestant and barbecue master, Chef Howard Kleinberg, has made me a true believer. The biscuits are great, the pulled pork is so good I wish I could sleep with it, and “The Heat” burger is one of the best burgers I've ever eaten. With that being said, these smokehouse wings served with their house made buttermilk blue cheese dressing are out-of-this-world good! The skin was crisp, they weren't too hot, and covered with a bold BBQ flavor that I really enjoyed. Yes, the food is a little pricey, but I feel both the quality and quantity of food offered a great value.

3) Barley: An American Brasserie Another name change but same great food. Owner and Executive Chef Jorgie Ramos is a master or as I like to call him a “mad scientist” when he’s in the kitchen. Located under the Metropolis Condo in Downtown Dadeland everything on the menu you can say yes to! Lechón Hash, the mahi tacos or the fried bone marrow are all excellent, but let’s talk wings. I was fortunate enough to be one of the first to try these fabulous wings. These chicken wings are dressed with a pimiento pepper marmalade, serrano peppers, crushed peanuts, cotija cheese and cilantro. The exterior skin of these wings were crisp, moist and juicy with a distinct fattiness, and the sauce was perfectly emulsified coating the wings. Always-fresh, big and messy, hot and meaty, flavorful wings! Take my word next time you visit Barley have these wings!

2) Blackbrick Chinese I ask this question, is there anything that Chef Richard Hales does that isn't extraordinarily good? I mean, everything at Sakaya Kitchen is amazing. And who doesn't remember the Dim Ssam food truck? One of my favorites. When you think Chinese food you think dim sum, egg rolls, dumplings, duck neck, but you definitely don’t think chicken wings. Well think again! The explosive chili chicken wings at Blackbrick are fire! The best way to describe them is sticky and sweet, deliciously crispy, with a made-from-scratch Thai sweet-chili sauce covered by a mountain of fresh veggies. Juicy and full of flavor and especially spicy, just the way I like it! Believe me, you’ll be licking your fingers.

1) Sports Grill If you couldn't tell, I take wings very seriously and third times a charm for Sports Grill. Home of Miami’s Best Chicken Wings! Sports Grill never fails to mention they have the best wings but they can back up the talk. If you’re a big time sports fan coming to cheer your favorite team or just stopping by to enjoy some cold drinks, I promise that their wings will be delicious! They get fresh wings delivered 3-4 times a week. They’re first deep-fried in non-trans-fat oil to get the crispiness, tossed in one of their sauces or rubs and grilled, before making it to your table! Whether you like Buffalo Style, BBQ or garlic wings, DALE wings and the seriously hot “Miami Heat” or my favorite and perfectly charbroiled, special grilled wings. All the wings are crunchy on the outside, moist on the inside, fall-off-the-bone, and full of flavor. Celery and blue cheese are optional because these wings are perfect just as they come.