To get everyone through the dog days of summer, we've asked our readers to tell us about a favorite, somewhat oddball restaurant, bar, or place of note that perhaps exists mostly off the radar. We'll be running submissions throughout the week, so please send in further recs to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Celeste and The Great Burrito, Upper West Side
Celeste on the UWS. Really good homey italian place. Great pizza, authentic pasta and main dishes, and the owner/host is a pleasant native Italian.
Also, the Great Burrito on UWS. Great hole in the wall Mexican run by a nice family that makes great authentic mexican dishes, some unusual (potato and jalapeno quesadilla is awesome) and the specials of the day are a real treat.
Caselulla, 401 West 52nd St., Hell's Kitchen
Living in midtown west has some advantages. Case in point: Caselulla on 52nd between 9th and 10th.
Brian, Allen, Doug and the rest of their team really go out of their way to make every occasion special. The menu is excellent with over 50 cheeses from all over the US, France and Canada, all paired with some accent and then brought tableside by the fromagier (who explains it and its pairings). They bring pairings like spicy bell pepper jam and sesame chips to accent the different flavors of each rind and wash.
Food wise they have an item called chistoras in a blanket, a small chorizo like sausage wrapped in light dough with pickled radishes atop a velvety creme fraiche like sauce. It’s to die for.
The restaurant's open late so us industry folk can bring our staff and managers somewhere after service and enjoy regional beer, a great glass of wine or champagne.
My girlfriend loves chocolate anything, so their 5 layer chocolate cake with local heavy cream doused on top is the best way to end a dinner. Ever.
I hope if you ever get the time you’ll make an appearance as it’s a definite must try spot uptown.
Shimizu, 318 W 51st St., Midtown
Oh I have been waiting/hoping for this feature to come back because I have just the recommendation.
You MUST try because you will ABSOLUTLY enjoy Shimizu. This unassuming sushi spot will blow your mind and keep your wallet happy. It has the best quality fish, rivaling Yasuda, Seki, and Sasabune – but the pieces are bigger and the prices lower. The best deal is the sushi for two: 10p sushi, 6p sashimi and 3 rolls. You can choose your fish, and INCLUDED in the selection is toro, uni, kampachi, wild alaskan salmon (you name it). This is the read deal, a beautiful slice of fish, perfectly cooked rice, and a dot of wasabi marrying the two. The cooked appetizers are also phenom. The staff is wonderful and always happy to see us. And most of the clientele is Japanese.....need I say more?