Tribeca and Willyburg Food Lovin’, Plus Some Berks Eatin’

It’s cold up here in the Berkshires! Tonight, we got to eat at the Dragon Steakhouse, which was formerly a Vietnamese restaurant, but now, turned into a steakhouse that offers…well steak (duh) and game. They had kangaroo loin and venison and elk sausages. I had their rib eye steak, my mom had lamb chops and my father beef tenderloin. Everything was amazingly delicious AND the prices were ridiculous, as in my huge steak was only $18 and my mom’s whole rack and a half of lamb was $19. Unreal. Our steaks were so tender. We also ordered their spring rolls, which were from their Vietnamese menu. Best spring rolls I’ve ever had. The family that owns and runs the place have a celebrity sibling.  Hung, who won Top Chef Season 3.  They also own a burger bar called 20 Railroad in Great Barrington.

Ok, enough about the winter wonderland. A few weeks ago, while watching the result of “The Next Iron Chef”, Dr. Awesome and I decided to try the newly appointed Iron Chef Marc Forgione‘s restaurant in Tribeca. The Thanksgiving meal he cooked in the episode was really inspired. Now, we’ve been to Hearth and love Marco Canora, but we had to admit that Forgione’s dishes were very original and were Iron Chef quality (unlike Iron Chef Garces, which I won’t get into).

We made our way downtown and walked in and immediately loved the space. It was modern, but had a slight rustic edge. We both ordered the pork belly appetizer.

Forgione pork belly

For the price, we found that they gave us a really good portion of food. And of course it was delicious.

As for our main dishes, I had the special, which was a veal cheek and a french style meatball made with veal too and had truffles on top.

Forgione veal

Dr. Awesome had the rib eye.

Forgione steak

We were so full of delicious Iron Chef inspired food. I had never heard of him before the Food Network show and had never heard of his father, Larry Forgione, who revolutionized American-style cuisine. Glad the Food Network is good for something! I think it’s probably safe to say that Marc definitely doesn’t have to worry about being in his father’s shadow.

A couple of nights later, we ventured to Williamsburg to Dram. This is definitely the place to try new, interesting and even classic cocktails at a reasonable price. They allow you to create your own drink as well (not physically). I would definitely suggest getting there a wee bit early, because after around 9:30, the place gets packed and no tables are to be found. After a few drinks, we needed some sustenance and what better place to go than right across the street than to Pies ‘n’ Thighs. We all ended up getting the same thing: Fried chicken with macaroni and cheese…all for $11!

Pies n thighs

Not a bad photo for being totally drunk. The chicken was so crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside. Our biscuit was the flakiest biscuit I’ve ever had and our mac and cheese and a nice little spicy kick to it. They originally told us the wait would be 20 min. We literally only waited like five. We’re going to go back there to try the other southern comfort inspired foods they have to offer. I think brisket might be my next venture.

Well, since I’m up visiting my parents, I might as well be productive, right? I’m getting up early tomorrow (Sunday) to help my father and see how the brining process is done. I’m really excited to finally see part of the craft.  The other night, I saw how he tested the acidity levels in the whey for the newly molded cheese. Cool stuff.

I also created some Berkshire Blue salad dressing! My first attempt was a success! I used the ingredients that were listed on the label for a dressing made from the cheese years ago. As I was making it, I tasted as I went along and used a basic blue cheese recipe as a starting point for measurements. It’s really is, though, all about taste, and this first batch came out great. Hopefully I can repeat! You never know. You might just be seeing our homemade dressing in places in the future 🙂

Oh and we found out about the Good Food Awards. Unfortunately, even though our cheese placed second in our region, we didn’t qualify to win a top award in San Francisco. There’s always next year. The recognition is great!

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~ by Rori on December 11, 2010.

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