Archive for October 2012

Midtown Slowly Creeping Back to Life After Sandy

Greetings from Midtown! I actually made it into work today, walking from the UES down to Midtown. Didn’t see any carts yet all the way down 6th Ave., not even coffee carts, until I reached 46th where Kim’s Aunt Cart is parked on 46th street, but on the opposite side of the street from their normal spot. Eddie’s Pizza Truck is also parked on 46th, and Park Italian is open (but the Pret next door is not). In Times Sq. the Nuchas Kiosk is back open in its regular spot, and Snack Box is open too but has moved south closer to the Rickshaw Kiosk. And, the Starbucks on 53rd & 6th is open but has a massive line down out the door.

On the Twitter… Glaze Teriyaki let us know that they’re open in Midtown today with limited delivery (but still closed in Union Sq., naturally), as is Minar, the Potbelly on 36th & 7th, and the Shake Shack on 8th Ave. And according to this Ma Peche, PJ Clarke’s, 5 Napkin Burger, and Schnipper’s Quality Kitchen are all open. Are you back at work today? Feel free to let us know about any other notable openings in the comments.

Video Break: Hungry For Halloween Blood at City Sandwich

We said we weren’t going to post today (since probably none of you will be eating lunch out in Midtown), but we thought this might be a fun exception for you to enjoy while you’re home, bored out of your mind, waiting for this impending hurricane. Although Sandy has overshadowed Halloween this year, we still thought we’d celebrate by making a video about a terrifying blood dish. So, with Clay’s help, I enlisted a mysterious luncher to join me in sampling City Sandwich’s morcilla (blood sausage) sandwich. Check it out after the jump…

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Hunkering Down For Hurricane Sandy: Midtown Lunch readers, I hope you have all hit the liquor stores and other important places to prepare for Hurricane Sandy. Since mandatory evacuations have been ordered in some areas, and transportation is shut down, most offices will be closed on Monday. We will not be reporting today, but we will be back with you as soon as possible! The ML Team hopes all of our readers, restaurant and bar owners, food truck vendors, and others remain safe throughout the storm.

Lunch Links (The “Domo Nacho Tot-o” Edition)

Domo Truck’s Japanese Nacho Totos. Photo courtesy of Gothamist

  • These guys love the nacho tots from the Domo Taco Truck [Gothamist]
  • Gallagher’s Steakhouse will close in January [Eater]
  • The Volcano returns to Momofuku Milkbar on Weds [Eater]
  • El Rey del Sabor voted one of NYC’s best Mexican spots [Eater]
  • The 21 Club gets zero stars from Pete Wells [NYT]
  • Hale & Hearty accidentally send out a profanity laden marketing email [Gothamist]

Midtown Happy Hour: While Away the Hours at the Irish Ivy

If you like to eat, chances are you like to drink (read: a lot of you are freakin’ lushes), so I thought maybe it was time to introduce a happy hour column to the site. Every week, our Happy Hour Correspondent posts about a different bar in Midtown that fits the Midtown Lunch mentality: unhealthy food, not lame (unless it’s lame in a cool way), and most importantly… cheap.

Not long ago, McAnn’s pub changed hands. I noticed the new sign over the summer, but I had just gotten a chance to make my way back to explore. The updated name is The Irish Ivy (46th btw. 5th and 6th), and since it’s fairly new, there weren’t many reviews on yelp or elsewhere. I was curious to check out their happy hour.

What I found out… the Irish Ivy is a place where I could see easily see myself becoming regular. The happy hour is long, from 4:00 – 9:00. Bud Light and Miller Light is $4, wines are $6 and well drinks are $5. Although the deals aren’t the best I’ve seen in Midtown, they also aren’t the worst… and I could tell as soon as I came in that this is a bar where service is fantastic, and you’ll get taken care of. And the atmosphere is fun enough that you could sit here for the whole five hours and have a good time.

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Hale & Hearty Unveils New Location and Six New Chef Driven Soups

I won’t make any illusion to my preference for soup as the single optimal food item that can be created by mortal hands. For me, soup season is every season, even during heat waves. We have no shortage of soup in Midtown, mostly in the form of Hale & Hearty, a chain which may not necessarily be the root of all soupiness but is probably the most visible single example. Overpriced their soups at times may be, their gazpacho is still cold and the soup is at least not complete dreck. With their opening of a new location on 40th between 7th and 8th, and with new celebrity chef created soups on the menu, could this be something different?
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Flatiron Lunch: Head to Ajisen as Ramen Season Arrives

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.

With the talk of Ivan Ramen coming to New York on the Food is the New Rock podcast with Deerhoof (What? You don’t listen yet? You should. It is kinda like ML in your ears) and my ensuing drool-inducing research on Eater, I needed a ramen fix. I can’t say there are many options for us Flatironers, but I had my eye on Ajisen Ramen, and, with the cooler weather, now was the time.

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Bryant Park Holiday Market Returns Tomorrow

It’s that time of year again. Preparations have been underway for the past several days, and now, the holiday shops at Bryant Park open tomorrow. Mmm…Enfes, TopArepa and Wafels & Dinges all return to the park, but I’m excited to try Strudels and Pies by Hans (pies) and La Churreria (churros). Yum. The official site is a little hard to use, but they’ve listed the food options listed so far. See you there!

Magdy’s Philly Cheese Steak Pretty Spectacular Hangover Cure

I don’t know about you, but I always enjoy some drinking games whilst watching presidential debates- which always makes for a rough time at work the next day! Thankfully I have found a pretty spectacular hangover cure: a Magdy’s Philly Cheese Steak. The cheese steak cart has been a favorite of the blog since 2007, and has perplexed us with interesting menu items like Chicken Scampi and a Cheesesteak over rice.

And besides serving up a wonderful recovery delight the day after painting the town red, I’d like to note that the cart is a Midtown classic: Magdy’s has been around for 15 years. Judging by the always long but fast moving line, it’s still going strong! I took this opportunity to remind Midtown Lunchers since we haven’t touched upon it in nearly a year, and I wanted to make sure our new readers know the score.

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Phil’s Steaks Declared A Terrorist Threat By The FDNY?

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse for food trucks… according to an article on Gizmodo yesterday, the NYC Fire Department has declared food trucks to be a legitimate terrorist threat. I mean while we’re at it, why don’t we ban all delivery trucks too. Couldn’t any of these be carrying lots of propane or drive through a building or wreak just as much havoc as a food truck? At best, singling out food trucks seems like just another attempt by the city to get food trucks off the street.  At worst, it kind of reeks of racism. Unsurprisingly they use incorrect facts to exaggerate the problem, claiming that there are 3100 food truck permits, when in fact there are 3100 total food vendor permits, and the majority of those are used on carts not trucks. The best part is their “internal use document” shows photos of trucks like Phil’s Steaks, Rickshaw Dumpling, and Kelvin Slush, as if these are the trucks they’re talking about.

Do we need to remind the FDNY that it was a Muslim street vendor who pointed out that car bomb to police a few years ago in Times Square?