PROFILE: Midtown Lunch’er “Jamie”

Every Tuesday I turn over the site to a different Midtown Lunch’er for his or her recommendations for the best lunch in Midtown. Meet Jamie, a future law student who works on the outskirts of Midtown, and thinks bacon, pigs in a blanket, and tequila qualifies as “healthy” food. She actually sent in two photos, and insisted I posted both because they “capture her essence.”  The before photo is below (I cropped out all her friends, but they’re about to start drinking). The after the drinks photo is after the jump.

Name: Jamie

Age: 23

Occupation: Non Profit Paralegal (with a food blog)

Where in Midtown do you Work?: 33rd & 10th (and you think you have it bad!)

Favorite Kind of Food: A pretty impossible question, I tried to break it down into categories. Jew: sour pickles, pastrami/corned beef sandwiches, matzah ball soup made by my mother. Healthy: wings, crispy duck skin, bacon, tequila shots, pizza, pigs n a blanket. Japanese: takoyaki, miso soup, katsu, hakata ramen. Korean: fried chicken, bulgogi, kalbi, kimchee. Chinese: dim sum, dumplings, congee. Malaysian: roti canai, beef randang. Vietnamese: pho, summer rolls. Spanish: arroz con pollo, sancocho, lechon asado, ceviche, arepas. Eastern European: borscht, pierogies, stuffed cabbage, lagman. Also, can’t forget French, Italian, Burmese, Thai, Greek, seafood, spinach, soup… this is harder than the LSAT, I’m spent. (I also enjoy a nice piece of cheese and a well plated dessert.)

Least Favorite Kind of Food: Half sour or dill pickles, super bitter things like grapefruit and arugula, and I do not love offal- I recently tried gizzard and wish I hadn’t.

Favorite Place(s) to Eat Lunch in Midtown: The special noodle with brown sauce (ja jang mein) at Hyo Dong Gak on 35th btw. 5+6th is probably the best midtown lunch dish around. It’s a huge portion of noodles with a thick brown sauce made with pork, onion, and zucchini for $8 that easily lasts me two lunches. I recently enjoyed curried goat roti at the Best of the West Deli on 34th and 9th. I always get the sweet and sour pork at Woorijip (on 32nd btw. B’way+5th), the eggplant at Pick a Pita (on 8th Ave. btw. 39+40th) is delicious, and I like the chorizo torta at Las Poblanitas (on 38th btw. 8+9th.)

The rest of Jamie’s answers, plus the “after the drinks” photo, are after the jump.

“Go-To” Lunch Place You and Your Coworkers Eat at Too Often? We used to go around the corner to the Skylight Dinner; clearly boring, except they do make fabulous fries. Now I have convinced everyone that the 30th Street location of Mooncake Foods is a much better venue with sandwiches, salads, and platters with an Asian flair for under $10. I also coordinate the office happy hours and have a few suggestions for Mamacita’s column, if I may: Café Andalucia for sangria, tapas, and $4 well drinks, Chef Yu for $4 old school cocktails, Blue Ruin is a dive that just opened with 2 for 1 on already dirt cheap drinks and a bartender that breathes fire, and Bourbon Street Bar & Grill (on 46th btw. 8+9th) which Zach has mentioned for awesome $5 hurricanes and juleps and a tasty alligator in a blanket appetizer.

Place(s) you discovered thanks to Midtown Lunch? Go Go Curry (on 38th btw. 7+8th), Woorjip, Kati Roll (on 39th btw. 5+6th), 6 Ave Newsstand (6th Ave. btw. 37+38th), and there is nothing better than the free or totally cheap ass lunches from the Volstead, Sophie’s Cuban, and Toloache- my coworkers and I thank you for letting us know about those!

If you could work anywhere (just because of the lunch) where would it be and why? Flushing, Queens! Golden Mall for liang pi, White Bear for hot oil wontons, Corner 28 for $1 Peking duck, Joe’s Shanghai for soup dumplings, Flushing mall for hand drawn noodle soup and fried calamari, Gala Manor for dim sum, Little Pepper to clear up my sinuses, Sweet n Tart Café, and the grocery stores with fresh, cheap produce and seafood. I am obsessed with Flushing for as long as I have memories.

Is there anything you’d like to ask the Midtown Lunch readers? Well, I am moving to Philly in August for law school (don’t worry, I plan on being the good kind of lawyer). Any recommendations for midtownlunchish food, food carts, and adventures I can go on to make me miss the food of NYC less?

And as promised… the “After” Photo

I don’t know nothing about Philly, except you should eat a pork and rabe sandwich at least 3 times a week (but trying to pick the best place for that is like arguing about the best slice of pizza in New York.) Anybody have a suggestion? Put it in the comments… and as always if you want to be next week’s Profiled: Midtown Lunch’er (or know somebody you’d like to nominate), email me at


  • Jamie: je t’aime. You had me at takoyaki. I could say something crass like “you can capture my essence anytime,” but instead lets settle down in some hutong in Flushing and I can hand feed you arugala, for isn’t life a bitter weed soemtimes? You can feed me grapefruit that come all the way from China. Give me, and gizzards, a chance. You can learn to love them both.

    As for law school, don’t let it change you. Be prepared for the intellectually and culinary incurious. 3 years I’m not sure I’d repeat. Talk about leaving a bitter taste in your mouth.

  • White dog cafe across the street from the Penn law school for a nice civilized meal to take parents to and have them pay or as a first date spot.

    The bar next door (sorry forgot the name) to White Dog for cheap beer.

    Pat’s Steaks on 8th and Passyunk for a mushroom provolone steak wit”.

    A place at 10th and Oregon (don’t think it has a name) for roast pork, provolone and broccoli rabe sandwich, the best I’ve ever had.

    Brownie’s Tavern and Plough and Stars near old city for more choice drinking spots.

    Lorenzo’s Pizza on South street for massive and cheap single slices, perfect for lunch or at 3AM to soak up a night of tequila shots.

    Joe’s Peking duck in Philly Chinatown for moo shu pork, peking duck (obviously) and the biggest and best bowl of hot and sour I’ve ever had, also a second location in Marlton NJ off Route 73 circle, ask for Jackie, the part-owner/waiter for recommendations at the NJ location.

    Also, there are a ton of indian buffet places in the 30th-40th street area just west of the Penn which used to give discount prices with a student ID.

  • Some really terrible comments on here….

    It’s turning into: “Lets see who can be the biggest asshole of all”

  • You must be half-asian because I know of no jewish lawyer chickie with such an affinity for pork, spice, and Flushing. You have us all drooling with your food porn. Please don’t leave NYC.

  • @meyekull – Really? This is actually them being nice…

  • Reading Terminal is the best for variety and quality at good prices. Since you’ll be on a student schedule, go during the week when you can avoid the huge weekend tourist crowds.

    Philly has great carts on lots of corners serving hoagies and cheesesteaks – you just need to try them out. Powelton’s Pizza near Penn has excellent heroes and chicken parm sandwiches.

    And of course there’s Abner’s cheesesteaks, home of the bellbuster combo.

  • Hottest luch’er yet.

  • hey hottie- maybe we can get together some time? You look mad good, especially in your “after” photo :)


  • Where to go in Philly…Ocean Harbor in Chinatown…great traditional dim sum. Grab some food from Reading Terminal Market (great jewish deli). I would say Geno’s over Pat’s for cheesesteaks,and the Italian Market is supposed to be wonderful (I haven’t made it there yet).

  • Meyekull, welcome to the internet. She’s a lil hottie. Shame about the ties to Philthadelphia. Where are the making her taco pop jokes?

  • Finally, a profiled luncher with good taste! And I’m impressed by any Jew who can tackle Flushing with such gusto. (Great, now I have visions of Flushing food dancing through my head.)

    @Meyekull: Uh, the bast majority of the comments are about how awesome and/or hot this girl is, or where to get good food in Philly.

    @Tanman: Did you think of that one all by yourself?

    Down with grapefruit! Long live the pomelo!

  • Greek Lady has amazing food if you are on Penn’s Campus.
    New Deck has good food but its even better during its midday half off all apps special, wings and cheese fries are great.
    You said you love wings, so you should go to Moriarty’s because they have the best in the city.

  • I’d like her pull on my pork.

  • My dearest Jaime:

    Although I am not ordinarily drawn to women with receding hairlines, I have made an exception in your case. A big exception.

    I have taken the liberty of adding that second photo of you to my screensaver collection and have printed it out on quality glossy paper. I may mount it.

    Your food aesthetic is remarkably similar to my own and shows a depth and sophistication not usually demonstrated by “youngsters” such as yourself. BRAVO!

    One word of advice, however: You seem like a delightful young woman. Law school will turn you into a brooding, rapacious hyena — a hyena with $200K worth of debt. If you go, it will happen. It always does. Please rethink that plan of action before it’s too late.

    A PhD or two can come in handy, you know! (I have them, by the way).



  • Who is Uncle Fuc Ker and why does his name appear where mine should be??

  • he must work in my office?? reveal yourself and quit with the corny/nasty comments theres childrens here.

  • i think i just felt my first pangs of a womancrush. Flushing? Dim Sum? swoon*

  • I love most women.

    I tolerate some women with high foreheads and exceptionally long tongues (which can, if used properly, be an asset).

    However, when a woman tells me she wants to go to “Law School”, then I lose all interest.

    Someone should convince “Jamie” (no, I do NOT have the time, nor the desire) that most “lawyers” are earning far less than most “Registered Nurses” at the present time.

    And, “Jamie”, you really need to keep your tongue INSIDE of your mouth. I mean, I’m just sayin’ . . .

  • Yay for profiling my hetero lifemate! I am so lucky to have a bestie that drags me around to all of these food places. Although I cannot agree with her dislike for grapefruit, but she knows that.

    We lost our takoyaki virginity together. How I long for more balls of octopus in my mouth for a tastebud orgasm. I have also been priviledged enough to have had a few excursions to Flushing with her and her family.

    All of those pictures were taken at my house in Philly, but I am sad that I was cut out and same with the lovely pomegranate-sugar rimmed cosmos we had in our hands that I made everyone for that evening.

    For those living in Philly. Phoebe’s BBQ is good for pulled pork and brisket take out. There is also a great place to get soup dumplings right next to the chinatown bus location with hideous neon lights, but I have never know the name of it. Vic’s also has a sushi platter of 39 peices for $30, which is always great to share with a friend. I don’ think anyone can beat that price.

    Jamie’s former roomie, who is also a future lawyer, half jew, who can’t get enough bacon.

  • Thanks for all the philly suggestions, you guys did not let me down! I am hopeful that I may just be able to survive without Flushing being a subway ride away.

    @ uncle f** k** the only pulled pork I am interested in has been cooked for hours and swaddled in vinegar and spices.

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