living underground in the real world

to do: FUN

IMG_4586Photo: Than Luu

I’ve been keeping a list of places to go in NYC (and around the world) on my computer for a while. It’s wildly random, but why not toss it on the blog?

(Updated April 2010!)

The notes are from reviews or hearsay I’ve read. I’m a little bit too lazy to make links to them all, but I bet you know how to use Google?

OK, Here’s where you learn a deep, dark truth about me, and will begin to understand why my friend Than calls me “Lagusta Yee”: all I care about in the world is Japanese noodles. I try to hide it most days, but wanting noodles takes up roughly 90% of my waking hours. Thus, a lot of my go-to restaurants involve noodles and/or Japanese food of some sort that might tangentially involve noodles.

Have you been to any of these places? Give up the dirt! Noodle porn? Send it right along, I live for it!

NYC

Matsugen: pricey Jean-Georges noodle shop.

Ippudo NY: homemade noodles

Kyotofu: Japanese veganish sweet treats. Jacob went and liked it. (update here!)

Kajitsu – Via Veronique. My new favorite restaurant I’ve never been to all my eating-out money goes to, oh, I love it so. It looks like it could be a contender for best meal ever (update: YES), which was a 4 hour meal I had at a (vegan) Zen Buddhist temple in Kyoto. From their website: “Kajitsu serves shojin cuisine, an ancient Japanese cuisine developed in Zen Buddhist monasteries. Following the Buddhist principle of not taking life, Shojin cuisine does not use meat or fish. Meals are prepared from fresh, in season vegetables, legumes, wild herbs, seeds and grains, chosen at the moment in the season that best reflects their flavor. At Kajitsu we make our delicious and wholesome dishes from high quality ingredients prepared with traditional Japanese culinary techniques.” Dying, dying dying DYING TO GO. With any luck, I’ve got a group of pals all ready to go next week. Report coming!

Rosanjin: a kaiseki (the Japanese ceremonial, elaborate meal that began as an accompaniment to tea ceremonies) restaurant on Duane Street. The New Yorker made it sound good. Then the NYT did the same, gave it a beautiful two-star review and made a point of mentioning their vegetarian kaiseki menu. $105 prix fixe vegetarian menu–Jacob has a birthday coming up, what do you say? Let’s do it!

Cho Dang Gol: Korean restaurant at 55 West 35th Street (212-695-8222). Selma went here and said reported that they have great homemade tofu. As with all Korean restaurants, be sure to ask a million questions to find out what has fish sauce, and don’t eat the kimchi (fish sauce guaranteed)!

Taim: NY Mag voted it best falafel 2006. 222 Waverly Pl, 212-691-1287.

En Japanese Brasserie: NYT called it “A Paean to Tofu in a Japanese Pub”!!!! (Update: awesome.)

Amma: apparently good Indian with lots of veggie dishes.

Pho Grand: I’m sure the pho isn’t vegan [insert long long rant here about this one place in Honolulu (Super Pho!) that makes vegan pho and how much I adore it], but I hear they have an avocado smoothie (called “avocado juice” on the menu) as well as a shave ice dessert that both sound like Hawaii and happiness to me. 277C Grand St at Forsyth, 212-965-5366. Also, something called “pickled lemonade”!

(Going through my files, I am physically restraining myself to not start writing a giant food lovers guide to NYC—Kalustyans! Bonnie Slotnick Cookbooks!!—another day, another day.)

IMG_4587

Photo: Than Luu

JAPAN

Shinyokohama Raumen Museum, Yokohama, Japan. Ramen museum, need I say more? Pitter patter goes my heart. RAMEN MUSEUM!!!!

Nakaiseki Sen, a vegetarian restaurant in Kyoto (they have a cookbook called Saisai Gohan by Yumiko Kanou)

Ichiwa, a mochi shop/stand in Kyoto that serves just one thing: aburi mochi (grilled mochi rolled in soy flour and served with a sweet miso sauce). The proprietor’s family has been making aburi mochi for 23 generations. How can this be??

Ikkyu, a shojin ryori (Zen Buddhist veggie food) joint in Kyoto (this might be where my magical meal mentioned above took place. I never got the name!). It’s outside the Daitouku-ji Zen temple.

Kawamichi-ya, a noodle shop in Kyoto

Okutan, a tofu restaurant in Kyoto

(The above Kyoto picks came from a Saveur Magazine article on Kyoto from May 2007)

IMG_4588

Photo: Than Luu

ELSEWHERE

PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND

  • Anne of Green Gables stuff, obs. But also:
  • P.E.I. Potato Museum!

CHICAGO

  • Alinea. I’ve read so so SO much about it. They’ve got to have some vegan stuff, right??

UPSTATE

  • Also via Veronica, Cow Jones, a vegan shoe + other awesome stuff shop in my very own neck of the woods!

EUROPE (Flea markets in Paris)

Marché Popincourt, R. du Marché-Popincourt, 11th, Paris: flea market! (Sat-Mon)

Les Puces de Saint-Ouen, 7 R. Jules-Valles, (Marché des Antiquaires) bet. Porte de St.-Ouen and Porte de Clignancourt, just outside the 18th, Paris: flea market! (Mon-Sun)

Marché D’Aligre, Place d’Aligre, 12th, Paris: flea market! (Mon-Sat)

Marché aux Puces e Montreuil, Ave de la Porte de Montreuil, 20th, Paris: flea market! (Sat-Mon)

Marché aux Puces de la Porte de Vanves, Ave Georges-Lafenestre at Ave Marc-Sangnier, 14th, Paris: flea market! (Sat and Sun)

(all these, via an article in Gourmet)

To be continued!

6 Responses to “to do: FUN”

    • lagusta

      Yeah, I went a few weeks ago! I found it very odd too and not all that vegan friendly, but also creative and fun. I went just for dessert and really loved what I got, some sort of soft serve sundae thing with mochi balls, it was really lovely. I liked it, oddness and all! What did you get?

      >

      Reply
  1. lagusta

    Oops, sorry, I answered that from my phone and didn’t see your post! Will read tomorrow! :)

    Reply
  2. lagusta

    Awww, I don’t know….I hate to say it publicly, but I am kinda not into Lula’s ice cream. And I LOVE food touching, fruity desserts, compotes, and black sesame ANYTHING, especially desserts. So, I fear we are slightly different sorts of dessert eaters, alas. But I’m happy you had a better experience the second time! And vegan anything is so rare in midtown (except for shittyass Zen Palate, ICK) that I’m just grateful for whatever Kyotofu has, you know?

    And yes, the drinks are GREAT!!

    Reply

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