Archive for November 2013

Lunch Links (The “Have a Happy Thanksgiving Weekend!” Edition)

Clarke’s Standard Thanksgiving Combo, available thru Nov 30th
  • Clarke’s Standard and Carnegie Deli both have Thanksgiving specials [Eater]
  • ‘wichcraft’s Bryant Park soup and grilled cheese kiosk is now open [Grub Street]
  • Sietsema’s Secrets: Katsu-hama’s Pork Cutlets [Eater]
  • Splurges: Your First look at Butter Midtown [Grub Street;Eater]
  • Sietseam’s first impressions of Ivan Ramen [Eater]
  • A look at Paris Baguette’s new Midtown location [SENY]
  • Larb Ubol is the best restaurant in Hell’s Kitchen [Fork in the Road]

Wafels & Dinges’ Herald Square Cabana is doing Free Wafels on Black Friday: Stuck in the tourist/shopper hell that is Macy's on the real American holiday of Black Friday? Wafels & Dinges wants to ease your burden. They're doing free wafels between 11 AM-12 PM and 4 PM-5PM this Friday to celebrate the opening of the Wafel Cabana (which is probably about 10,000 times better than the Copacabana).

Video Break: Celebrating Thanksgivukkah at Ess-a-Bagel

You have to be living under a rock (Plymouth?) if you haven’t heard that this year Thanksgiving and the first day of Hanukkah fall on the same day. While people are at home cooking potentially awful dishes like Manischewitz-brined turkey and cranberry latkes, I decided to head over to Ess-a-Bagel to see if I could put together a hybrid holiday meal. Too bad we have to wait another 80,000 years to officially celebrate Thanksgivukkah again. But it’ll be here before you know it. Check out the video after the jump.

Read more »

Is Ivan Ramen What We’ve Been Waiting For? Our Man Jared Blake Scharff (from SNL) Weighs In

Back in August, SNL guitarist Jared Blake Scharff confessed to Zach on the Food is the New Rock podcast that he would love to write for Midtown Lunch.  Well, it only took 3 months but here’s his first contribution!  If you listened to the episode of the podcast you know he’s a huge fan of ramen so it only makes sense that we would have him review the first NYC location of Ivan Ramen in the Gotham West Market.  You can follow Jared on Twitter @scharffishere and Instagram @scharffishere

“Saturday Night Live Guitarist, Producer/Writer, Ramen Enthusiast” states my Twitter profile, so let there be no confusion… I’m MEGA-serious about my Ramen! I got my first taste of “adult” ramen (aka non-dorm room “top ramen”) a few years back when Momofuku Noodle seemed like the only game in town. First bowl in and my world had changed. I went to Japan a month or so after that and quite possibly ate my weight in Ramen. Looking back on it now, I may have discovered my own personal heaven in Japan, the place where I learned what Ramen truly could be.

Unless you live under a rock, you may have noticed the ongoing Ramen explosion in New York City (and Los Angeles) over the past few years. Along with this comes absurdly long lines, additional locations being added, and increasing ramen varieties amongst all the competitors. While all of this has been rapidly growing, so has the legend of Ivan Orkin. Orkin, a self proclaimed “Jewish kid from Long Island”, rose to fame with his own critically acclaimed Tokyo shop “Ivan Ramen” in 2007. He has been doing sold out pop-ups in NYC throughout this past year but this past week finally settled down into a permanent location in NYC. It looks like Ivan Orkin is back and here to stay.

Enter “Ivan Ramen Slurp Shop” at Gotham West Market.

Read more »

Wafels & Dinges Now Permanently Available in Herald Square: The permanent kiosk of Wafels & Dinges we told you about last month opened this past Saturday and they are now serving all the usual sweet and savory dinges, including their play on chicken and waffles and their spekuloos milkshake (which has only been available in their East Village stroefront until now). The stand will be open seven days a week from 7am-10pm. And they'll soon be joined by Nuchas.

Our First Look at Gotham West Market (and First Taste of Court St. Grocers)

Gotham West Market
(and a very hard to photograph sign)

Like we mentioned last week, Gotham West Market (11th Ave btw 44th+45th) is now open for lunch, dinner, and snack business and I hiked over to the end of the world 11th Avenue to check it all out. The market itself feels like a post-modern food court with its glassed-in open air stalls and stainless steel seating open to all, the only break up being an entrance into the Brooklyn Kitchen anchoring the back wall. Oh, and $13 ramen.

Read more »

Free Falafel Alert: Pitopia (on B'way and 37th) turns two years old today and to celebrate they're giving away coupons for free falafel today.  To claim yours just send an email to or click the sign up link on their facebook page and they'll email you the coupon.  Freeloaders, engage.

Ivan Ramen Now Open in Gotham Market; Hinata Ramen Opens Today on 55th

Here’s two more big ramen openings for Midtown…


A sign on the window yesterday promised that Hinata would open for lunch service today on 55th Street between Lexington and Third Ave. I have not been able to find a menu online, but according to the sign, ramen will be the focus. But in even bigger news Ivan Ramen is finally open as part of the giant Gotham West Market on 11th Ave. btw. 44+45th.  It’s way out of bounds for most lunchers, and some of the prices are a bit over the $10 limit, but if it’s anywhere close to as good as its hype it should be well worth it.

Check out the menu after the jump…

Read more »

Flatiron Lunch: Regional Thai is Another (and Pink!) Option for Flatiron Thai

Every Friday we go south of the ML boundaries in search of a delicious lunch. Sometimes it’s Murray Hill south or the Flatiron District, sometimes Gramercy and everything in between- but we just like to call it Flatiron Lunch.

After visiting Pongsri Thai in August, with a tepid experience, Flatiron Lunch’er stevenp recommended Regional Thai as a better option, so I went to check it out for myself. He also mentioned M Thai which will make an appearance on a future Flatiron Lunch post.

Read more »

Paris Baguette Now Open in Midtown East

The Korean-owned, French-inspired bakery, Paris Baguette, has opened its Midtown East location on Lexington Ave. (at 52nd St.). Actually, according to Serious Eats, it’s been open for a while now. The bakery offers a variety of breads and pastries, as well as sandwiches and beverages. Their dessert and bubble tea offerings are especially good. And as Clay noted, their savory options are not to be ignored either. Let us know if you stop by to try anything.

Paris Baguette, 52nd Street and Lexington Avenue