Wednesday, July 23, 2014


16 W. 23rd St, NY, NY 10010

Rating: 2 - Super Happy
Visit #: 5 
In brief: Today's lesson: the magic #2 Italian combo should never be ordered on a roll. Always a hoagie.
07-23 Lenny's
I had been raving about the #2 Italian combo to my sister, who has been coming to the office for Wednesday lunches for the past several months now. Instead of facing the hectic crowds at Lenny's I decided to try their online ordering system only I completely missed the part where I had to choose roll or hoagie and I guess it defaults to roll. It's still pretty good but not quite as great.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Shanghai Cafe

100 Mott St, NY, NY 10013

Rating: 1 - Wonderful
Visit #: 23
In brief: Delicious, as always.
07-22 Shanghai Cafe Deluxe
I was worried that the string beans wouldn't be as good since M. says string beans in general have been disappointing, but once again Shanghai Cafe did not disappoint. Luckily O, who was meeting us for lunch, did not mind that we already had a specific vision of what we wanted to have. And even nicer than that, since he works in Chinatown now so he oh so graciously ceded the two last soup dumplings to us. Love that guy.

Monday, July 21, 2014


67 W. 23rd St, NY, NY 10010 (back of Four Seasons Cafe)

Rating: 3 - Feeling Good
Visit #: 3
In brief: Zero percent atmosphere but a dozen Korean dishes when you really need a fix and can't make your way to Fort Lee.
07-21 Koo Foo
I don't remember being so satisfied with the bibambap last time but it was pretty enjoyable today. M. finished off every bite and I might have too if I wasn't so unhappy at spilling half a ginger ale all over my lap.

Friday, July 18, 2014


37 Kenmare St, NY, NY 10012

Rating: 1 - Wonderful
Visit #: 13
In brief: My stomach misses Cocoron so much, every time I am within a 3 block radius, I make an excuse to eat there.
07-18 Corcoran
And it is summer Friday! M. and I decided that since we're not having flex Fridays this summer, we'll have long lunch Fridays instead. Anywhere we want to go in the entire city is fair game, as long as it's a meal that's gonna make us happy. Cocoron always does that with their cold bata shabu soba. I haven't eaten anything else there for months now because I miss it so much.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Via Emilia

47 E. 21st St, NY, NY 10010

Rating: 3 - Feeling Good
Visit #: 2
In brief: The pasta at Via Emilia is nice and fresh and the sauces not too sweet, so that's a good thing.
07-17 Via Emilia
I chipped the temporary filling on my tooth this morning on a bit of challah bread, obviously completely forgetting the dentist said to chew only on the left side. Still, it made me nervous to eat anything more than soft foods so pasta it was. Via Emilia was a little more filled than last time we went, which I take to be a good sign.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014


8 W. 18th St, NY, NY 10010

Rating: 2 - Super Happy
Visit #: 8
In brief: Ootoya is always a good bet for lunch.
07-16 Ootoya
I have finally found a dish I want to eat again at Ootoya. Most of the lunch sets are huge and an overwhelming amount of food but today I tried the tonkatsu and I have to say, quite nice. It's not too large a portion I love love love the supremely thinly shredded cabbage salad that accompanies the breaded and fried pork chop.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Maison Kayser

921 Broadway, NY, NY 10010

Rating: 4 - Just Fine
Visit #: 1
In brief: Salads are not our usual fare, but Maison Kayser makes a pretty nicely packaged one.
07-15 Maison Kasyer
The truth is I was headed back to the office after 2 hours at the dentist where he only got halfway through a root canal and I couldn't bear the thought of actually eating anything. And as much as the usual jambon beurre sandwich would have hit the spot, there was no way I was chewing through something as hearty as a baguette.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Paris Sandwich

213 Grand St, NY, NY 10013

Rating: 3 - Feeling Good
Visit #: 9
In brief: Always a reliable sandwich choice, the Paris Special banh mi at Paris Sandwich lasts doubly as long if you ask them to separate out the veggies from the meat.

07-14 Paris Sandwich
Do you know this trick for transporting banh mi? My aunt does this everytime she brings us banh mi from the glorious city of Montreal where the Vietnamese sandwiches are just divine. She asks the store to leave out the pickled carrots, coriander and hot peppers. You can't transport the fresh vegetables across the border anyway and then when she gets to us, we toast up the banh mi lightly in the oven, insert locally bought coriander, etc. and presto! If you buy here in the city, say at Paris Sandwich, just ask them to package the veggies in a separate bag. That banh mi will keep in your fridge for a couple days at least until you are ready to eat it. 

Monday, July 7, 2014

Manna Kitchen

28 E. 18th St, NY, NY 10003

Rating: 4 - Just Fine
Visit #: 5
In brief: It's been two so-so meals in a row at Manna, and yet we still keep going back.
07-07 Manna Kitchen
The lack of good Asian food in the Flatiron/Union Square area is killing us, which is why we keep going back to Manna Kitchen even though it's just ok. I've had two not-that-great meals in a row, first the tofu lunch box and today the beef bulgogi (I ask you, how can beef bulgogi be bland?). M. doesn't mind the naengmyun there and I think I had better go back to the hot stone bulgogi.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Num Pang

1129 Broadway, NY, NY 10010

Rating: 4 - Just Fine
Visit #: 5
In brief: We probably need to stop ordering the noodle and rice bowls and stick to the sandwiches.
07-03 Num Pang
It's probably the over abundance of sandwich options in this worker friendly neighborhood that compels us to order the rice bowl at Num Pang over and over again. Always with slightly disappointing results.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Red Hook Lobster, with Andrew in Alabama

16 Extra Place, NY, NY 10003

Rating: 2 - Super Happy
Visit #: 1
In brief: If you've always felt bad you couldn't make it out to Red Hook for Red Hook Lobster Rolls, now you don't have to. Red Hook Lobster occupies a lovely alley spot off of Bowery just to serve you delicious lobster rolls.
07-02 Red Hook Lobsters
It's a landmark day for us at Lunch Studio, long time reader and I think I can say now friend, Andrew from Alabama, is in New York! And we had lunch together! And it was so great I could probably write this entire posts in exclamations marks, but I will spare your ears. He had, naturally, a good list of want to eats, including lobster rolls and ramen. We suggested the rather secret alleyway a block north of the Whole Foods on Houston for hit-the-spot lobster rolls from the Red Hook Lobster establishment. If you're craving lobster rolls, you want a charming bar stool and some room to eat it in, this is the place. And if you have good company, like we did, all the better for you.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Maison Kayser

921 Broadway, NY, NY 10010

Rating: A - Excellent
Taste #: 3
In brief: Pop! pop! pop! pop! pop! That's us eating five chouquettes from Maison Kayser. 06-23 chouquettes

Halal Cart

5th Ave above 23rd St, NY, NY 10010

Rating: 4 - Just Fine
Visit #: 1
In brief: Original ingredients, but could use fresher pita. 06-24 Rafiq's
We've been looking for good street meat up here but it takes awhile to try all the carts without knowing which one is good. We stopped at the one in front of the Marimeko store because the tantalizing smell of grilled meats caught us mid stride. They put olives and corn in the gyro, very unusual, and not unpleasant. Would have been better with a less stale pita, but then again, everything tastes better with fresh bread.


16 W. 23rd St, NY, NY 10010

Rating: 2 - Super Happy
Visit #: 4
In brief: The # 2 Italian combo hoagie is worth the chaotic line, the cramped waiting space and total lack of ambiance.
06-23 Lenny's The hectic wait at Lenny's for our #2 Italian combo hoagie was mitigated by the beautiful sandwich eating weather outside. We even got a table at the outdoor triangle of paved road. It's the crisp, thinly shredded iceberg lettuce that puts this hoagie over the top. Every bite was stunningly delicious.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Bob White Lunch & Supper Counter

94 Avenue C, New York, NY 10009

Rating: 1 - Wonderful
Visit #: 1
In brief: This place is not disappointing.
06-20 Bob White
I've been wanting to come to this place since it opened a few years back, but somehow it just didn't sink into Y's head. That is until one of her friends brought it over for dinner. Anyhow, my first visit ever was not disappointing. The fried chicken is classic. No frills, no fancy crusts, no extra flavorings, just straight up fried chicken. It is often hard to do the seemingly simplest things well. And Bob White does an excellent job.