January 30, 2017

Oodles of Noodles!

Shio Chicken Ramen
 My first time having Ramen and I was mind blown! Ramen was always something that never appealed to me because of the large bowls and also fearing the taste of an egg or meat in a soup bowl. I always love to try something new but whenever I saw snapchats or pictures of my friends eating Ramen I would always look away. This past weekend I let my boyfriend choose a place to eat and of course he consulted FourSquare and found this Ramen place near his apartment in the UES. 

I of course tried to protest and was hesitant at first since I didn't think I was ready to dive into this type of Japanese cuisine so soon. We ended up going to Mei Jin Ramen on a Saturday night around 6:30 p.m. without any reservations. We did have to wait for less than five minutes to be seated and this place was crowded when we arrived. Looking at their menu they didn't seem to have an extensive menu by any means but they seemed to have quiet a few option for each type of Ramen. 

I really wanted the Veggie Veggie Ramen since I am always skeptical about eating poultry or any type of meats when out. But of course I decided to embrace my inability to eat poultry outside of my home and opted for the Shio Chicken Ramen. This particular dish came with half an egg which initially freaked me out but surprisingly really liked it. Now on to the chicken part... the chicken had a distinct taste to it but that along with the noodles was the best part of the meal. There was something about the way the chicken was cooked and packed with flavor that only made me wish they had given me more than two small pieces. 

Spicy Chili Beef Ramen

Daniel on the other hand likes Ramen and opted for a bowl of Spicy Chili Beef Ramen. I did have a taste of his order and I was glad I had stuck with chicken instead of beef since I was neither a fan of the ground beef nor the spiciness. However, to each their own because Daniel really seemed to enjoy his dish. We decided to skip the appetizers and opted for tap water instead of wine or soft beverages. The portions are pretty big and it is not a "normal" soup dish by any means but I did think it could have used a bit more noodles and chicken. In terms of pricing, this place is very affordable with dishes ranging from $13-$15 a bowl and they even have another entrance to their place which is strictly dessert and beverages. 

I am not saying that I completely fell in love with Ramen but I did like trying out this new type of cuisine and would definitely recommend this place to anyone looking for a bowl of Ramen or wanting to try something new. The atmosphere of this place is cozy with small wooden benches as seats that have a little basket underneath where you can put your purse or a small jacket. 


My rating:
9/10
Reasons why:
-Pleasant and calming atmosphere, family friendly
-Reasonable pricing on their food
-Great and fast service
-Not too noisy for a Staurday night
-Deducted one point because it could have used a bit more noodles and chicken


Links below if you want to check them out:
Grub Hub Menu
Website
Instagram
Twitter
Facebook
Address
1574 2nd Ave 
New York NY, 10028

Phone Number:
(212) 327-2800


Cash me in my next post, how bow dah?
-Jess



January 24, 2017

San Marzano | East Village

***Before you start reading, don't forget about Restaurant Week here in NYC from January 23 - February 10!***
Sangria (red)

I have started a pattern of trying to find the perfect red glass of Sangria everywhere I go. San Marzano, located in the East Village has perhaps the most affordable glass of Sangria that I have ever seen. This rich glass could have used a bit more fruit and less ice but was more on the sweet side which is what I really like. I am not a big fan of bitter or sour drinks so I always opt for a sweet white wine or a classic glass of red sangria. To change things up I think next time I will opt for a white sangria since I have never had one. 

Meatballs (veal, pork, beef, mushroom marinara sauce)

Daniel and I decided to share a plate of meatballs as our appetizer since we did have to wait 30min to be seated because we had not made a reservation ahead of time. Since this is the second time I have had meatballs in years, I cannot really say that these were my favorite. I would suggest opting for calamari since you can never go wrong with that.

Farfalle wild boar ragu                                      Spaghetti alla norma 

We both decided to stick with their fresh pasta and sauce. Daniel had the Farfalle wild boar ragu which he described as having a stroganoff taste which was unexpected. The portion size was decent and a bit on the small side but definitely fulfilling for my petite self. When I eat out at restaurants I tend to stick to vegetarian or seafood dishes since I am not a huge fan of red meats or poultry. I was disappointed that the menu did not have any seafood or poultry options. The reason I chose Spaghetti as my pasta was because I honestly did not know how to pronounce the other options and I did not want to make a fool of myself (which I deeply regret). I chose the alla norma sauce since it was the only option that had eggplant and I wanted my pasta to have more than just grape tomatoes and sauce. I do wish they would add a mushroom option as I am a big fan of that in my dishes. Personally I really liked my dish mainly because the eggplant was tendered and melted in my mouth and did not feel chewy. Overall my dish was very well prepared but I think next time I will ask to not include mozzarella cheese as it seemed unnecessary. 

Cannoli

I think this is one of those rare occasions where we would order dessert at a restaurant. I am a big fan of dessert and I have a sweet tooth to pretty much anything! Daniel on the other hand is not into sweets so I was lucky enough to not have to share this delicious cannoli with him. I haven't had enough cannoli's from different places to make a comparison but this is probably the best one that i have tasted since the filling was a thick consistency compared to the few that I have tastes within the past year or two. 


My rating:
7/10
My reasoning behind this rating is due to the following:
1. This place is a bit on the noisy side with very little room between tables which makes it difficult to converse with whoever you're with. If you're eating at this place with at least 4 people then noise won't be as much of an issue compared to a party of 2. 
2. Our waitress did forget to bring us a basket of bread when we were seated but I am unsure whether that was because we ordered an appetizer or not but every table that I could see was served bread when they were first seated. I do however acknowledge that this was a busy night so it may have been an oversight.
3. I think this place would really benefit with a more extensive menu that had other sauce/meat options. 
4. I highly suggest making reservations ahead of time since we did have to wait about 30min to be seated and others that came after us had to wait for about 45min to an hour. 
5. Our bill was fairly inexpensive compared to other places that we've been to so I can safely say that this place is budget friendly. 

If you are interested in dining in the East Village you can check out their menus here: Lunch/DinnerBrunchWine/Beer or you can check out their website Here for more information.

Hopefully I am able to check out more restaurants during Restaurant Week here in NYC from January 23 - February 10.
Till next time!
-Jess

January 17, 2017

How To Style A Leather Crop Top

 Zara Top Similar Here | Olive Green Pants Similar Here| OTK Boots HERE

Hi everyone! Today's post is going to be dedicated to this faux-leather crop top from Zara. Currently ZARA is having a huge winter sale and I was able to pick up this crop top that is pretty much out of my comfort zone. This first outfit consists of a "pop" of color by incorporating a washed out olive green pants tucked in a pair of over the knee boots. The pants are mid-rise so my insecure area is very well covered because of my petite torso. This outfit is very comfortable because of the mid block heel and the over the knee boots dresses this look up to not make this outfit too casual. 

Tweed Skirt Similar Here |  Black Bootie HERE

This outfit is a favorite of mine because it incorporates mixing two different materials in one outfit. This semi-mini tweed skirt really pops because of the bare legs and biker-like booties. Depending on where you live, I would recommend wearing sheer black tights in order to combat the cold winter weather. You can opt for black over the knee boots if you don't want to wear tights or leggings but want to cover up for the colder weather. The skirt is currently 75% off from Areopostale and can be found in-stores only. This outfit can also be swapped with flats or a non-heel shoe  for added comfort. 


Black Skinny Jeans HERE | Gold Cross body Similar Here  | Unisa Pumps HERE

This last outfit is my favorite because it is a more glamorous look because of the gold cross body bag and the crisscross pumps. These shoes from Unisa are the most comfortable pumps I have ever worn. This 2 3/4 in heel instantly dresses up this look because of the front detailing and mid-length heel. I decided to make this last outfit all black and pair it with a small gold cross body purse to make it more glamorous. These jeggings are a bit too long on me so I decided to roll them up so that they wouldn't interfere with the front detailing of the shoe. I might just wear this  outfit for my birthday dinner next week.

Thank you for tuning in on how I style this faux-leather crop top. If you have any specific styles you would like to see just let me know in the comments down below. 

XOXOXO- Jess



January 9, 2017

Cascabel Taqueria

POLLO CHIPOTLE
 shredded amish chipotle chicken / spring onion / avocado / chicken chicharron

If you are looking for a Mexican Taqueria in the Upper East side then you should head over to Cascabel Taqueira and enjoy their fair like meals. This place is more on the casual side for people who want to have a couple of drinks and eat savory Mexican food. Daniel opted for a set of two Pollo Chipotle tacos. In my opinion, two small tacos is not enough for a meal so I highly suggest paying a little more for three tacos instead of two or order an appetizer beforehand. 

CEMITA POBLANO
 shredded berkshire pork butt / mango / oaxaca cheese / queso fresco / smashed avocado / aioli / papalo

I decided to opt for a sandwich since they are served with sweet potato fries. My sandwich was not overly big but because I had a late breakfast I ended up taking half of my meal home. I had doubts with my order since I have a very low tolerance for spicy food but our waitress had assured me that my order was not spicy. After receiving my order and devouring into this sandwich, I did get a bit of a spicy taste but nothing that I couldn't handle. My sandwich was rich in flavor and the fries was a good pairing. 


Even though I was content with my meal, I decided to give their desserts a taste so Daniel and I shared a plate of bite-sized churros with a chocolate sauce dip. These churros were warm and crispy and the semi-bitter chocolate sauce balanced out the flavors quiet nicely. Overall I really enjoyed my food, the atmosphere, and the excellent service we received as soon as we walked into the door. To me, customer service is something that can either make or break and experience so I was really happy that our waitress attended us in all our questions and needs for the day. Perhaps next time I'll give their tacos and tres leches dessert a try. 

You can check out their menu HERE

How to get here: 
Take the Q train to 86th street and exit through 83rd street, 2nd ave and walk down towards 80th street. Or take the 4/5/6 trains to 86th street and exit on 86th st and Lexington ave and walk over to 2nd ave and 80th st. 

My rating:
8.5/10