Restaurant Review: Quantum Leap

Details: Located at 226 Thompson St, New York, NY 10012. Official site is http://www.quantumleapnewyork.com/

Quantum Leap is essentially a compromise between me and me vegan friends. Some of them at least. Other vegan friends have questioned whether the food here is truly vegan and have since, never returned. As an omnivore, I could care less.

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Restaurant Review: Indian King Biryani House

Details: It is the food cart on the northwestern most corner of the block of 140 Broadway,
New York, NY 10005. Couldn’t find an official site so here’s an unclaimed yelp page: https://www.yelp.com/biz/indian-king-biryani-house-new-york?osq=food

I normally don’t write any post for halal food carts, but this was identifiable enough to write something. Got the chicken over rice for five dollars, which was fine but better priced than most places by a dollar. Notable is that a lot of people waiting on the line with me got other stuff. For instance, they have a Chinese style chicken over rice and other biryanis. I think they use a different sauce for those. Those things seemed fairly popular, but they do cost extra, like eight or nine dollars.

Score: 4.5/10

Restaurant Review: Hibachi Express 1

Details: Located at 4 Cortlandt St, New York, NY 10007. Official site is http://www.hibachiexpressny.nyc/index.html

Came here for a quick lunch. Got the chicken which came with rice and cooked vegetables. It’s pretty much the same as the chicken teriyaki you’d expect from the food court at a mall. Wasn’t great, but wasn’t terrible. Cost around eight to nine dollars. They also have beef, shrimp, and tofu if you want that. Portions were smaller than I’d have liked.

Score: 4.5/10

Restaurant Review: Bento Sushi & Noodles

Details: Located at 173 Broadway, New York, NY 10007. Couldn’t find an official site so here’s the yelp page: https://www.yelp.com/biz/bento-sushi-and-noodles-new-york-2?osq=japanese

Came here for a quick lunch. Got the beef rice bowl for around nine dollars I think. It wasn’t great, but it was fast. They have some shitty sushi and noodles if you want that.

Score: 4.5/10

Restaurant Review: Dominos v. Pizza Hut v. Papa Johns v. Little Cesars

Detais: Located all over the place. Official sites are https://www.dominos.com/en/, https://www.pizzahut.com/#/home, https://www.papajohns.com/, https://www.papajohns.com/.

I’ve been eating a lot shitty, fast food pizza lately. You know the kind; a big brand that heats up ingredients frozen for years. It’s particularly shitty because I live in New York City, which means I have access to cheaper, better quality pizza everywhere. In any case, I decided to write a review for it and since there are so many brands of shitty pizza, I decided to declare a winner. Here goes.

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Restaurant Review: Peacefood Cafe

Details: Located at 460 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10024. The official site is peacefoodcafe.com

This is a gluten free, vegan place. I’m not vegan nor do I give a shit about gluten.

The decor was nice. The service was nice. The food was horrendous. I had the seitan avocado sandwich… to my great regret. It cost around ten dollars. My vegan friends really enjoyed their food.

Overall, I don’t like vegan places and I did not like this place.

Score: 3/10

NYC Bubble Tea Review: Kung Fu Tea v. Ten Ren Tea v. CoCo Fresh Tea and Juice v. Vivi Bubble Tea v. Gong Cha Bubble Tea

Details: Located around New York City. Official sites are http://kfteausa.com/, http://www.tenren.com/index.html, http://www.cocobubbletea.com/, http://www.vivibubbletea.com/index.php, http://www.gongchausa.com/

I’ve been drinking bubble tea for years. Many, many years. So it’s not surprising that I’ve developed my own preferences in regards to which bubble tea place is my favorite. The bubble tea places that I chose for this list needed to have at least three locations within the New York City area and they needed to be primarily bubble tea places. They could not be restaurants or cafes that happened to also sell bubble tea. If you go to these establishments, you’re going here for the bubble tea and the bubble tea alone.

Kung Fu Tea

Kung Fu Tea in my opinion is one of the best if not the best tasting bubble teas because their tea actually tastes different. I want to say it’s because they use Lactaid as their dairy component, but I’m not entirely sure. Whatever they put in there, it’s good. I will note that some friends have had bad experiences with the service here.

Score: 6/10

 

Ten Ren Tea

Ten Ren Tea just makes the cut with only three locations in NYC. Where Kung Fu Tea has a slightly distinct taste, Ten Ren tastes vastly different from other places. Personally, I don’t like it, but I do know people who love Ten Ren bubble tea and prefer it over other brands.

Score: 4.5/10

 

CoCo Fresh Tea and Juice

Coco is an unexceptional place to get bubble tea. They have pretty much everything you can get anywhere else. Even though it’s merely average, I still prefer CoCo over other places. I can’t explain it.

Score: 5/10

 

Vivi Bubble Tea

Vivi’s tea is like CoCo’s; it is unexceptional. It is average. One thing that distinguishes Vivi is that they offer food. I don’t recommend any of it that isn’t deep fried. The other thing that distinguishes this place are the bubble teas or floats with cotton candy coming out of the top. Those I recommend.

Score: 5.5/10

 

Gong Cha Bubble Tea

I had Gong Cha once and I never went back. I thought it was terrible. I’ve since asked people who actually liked Gong Cha about what they liked about it and they said that it had a very distinct tea taste which, I’m guessing, is different from the sugary taste of other bubble teas. Personally, I don’t like it.

Score: 4/10

 

Conclusion

Kung Fu Tea is the best place that mainly does bubble tea and has three or more locations in New York City. Personally, I prefer CoCo… for no discernible reason. I still acquiesce that Kung Fu Tea is better.

Restaurant Review: Luke’s Lobster

Details: Located at 207 E 43rd St., New York, NY 10017. Official site is http://www.lukeslobster.com/

I came here for lunch one day. I ordered the Luke’s Trio, which is a half lobster roll, a half crab roll, and a half shrimp roll for $19.50. The rolls weren’t great. Red Hook is far better in my opinion. The meat was all cold and the bun was buttered and warm. I like warm bread, but the quality of the meat wasn’t great. If you have the option, I’d recommend going to Red Hook Lobster Pound or Fish instead if you want to get a good lobster roll in New York City.

Score: 4/10

Restaurant Review: Di Fara Pizza

Details: Located at 1424 Avenue J, Brooklyn, NY 11230. I couldn’t find the official site so here’s the Yelp page: https://www.yelp.com/biz/di-fara-pizza-brooklyn

Di Fara pizza has been hailed by many New York City food publications as the greatest slice in New York City. That’s bold praise. After hearing about this place for many years, I decided to go down to Avenue J and give it a try.

I read that the lines for this place are crazy so I decided to try coming by on a weekday. I came by on a Thursday and arrived at 12:00 PM, which was the time they were supposed to open. Doors actually opened at around 12:30 PM. There were a few people here, but not much of a line and I got my food somewhat promptly.

The draw of this place is its insistence on sticking with tradition. Established in 1965, Di Fara’s pizza has been made by Dom DeMarco the entire time. When I walked into the dimly lit pizzeria, Dom DeMarco, now an old man, was still there, making the pizzas for all to see.

The way things work is that you, the customer, walk up to someone taking orders, he will write your name onto a list and then you wait for your slices to be made. The wait for pizza was around twenty minutes for me from taking my order. That does not include time waiting on a line since there was almost no line for me when I went. I ordered a square slice and a regular slice for $6 and $5 respectively.

So, do I think that Di Fara’s pizza is the best pizza in New York City? Hell no. I’ve had much better slices at lower prices elsewhere in the city. Do I think the slices I got on my trip to Di Fara’s were good? The answer’s still no. The pizza here was not the worst pizza I’ve ever had, but it certainly wasn’t all that good.

If you want a description of the taste, it tastes like pizza. It’s thin crust, I saw him put a couple kinds of cheese on it, the cheese is unevenly distributed, he adds olive oil to the pizza before putting it into the oven. After taking it out of the oven, he sprinkles some more cheese over it and cuts up some basil (I think) over the pizza before cutting it up and serving.

I have no idea how the food publications concluded that this slice was not just good, but the best in the city. Perhaps the quality has dropped off in recent years as DeMarco’s age has advanced. Perhaps DeMarco was having an off day. I don’t know. All I know is that I did not enjoy these slices all that much. They were at best, just okay.

Overall, this place isn’t worth the trip out to Avenue J in my opinion. The slices I had were not the best. They were, at best, barely satisfactory.

Score: 4/10

Restaurant Review: Chop’t

Details: Located at 11 W 42nd St., New York, NY 10036. Official site is http://choptsalad.com/

I’ve come here a few times simply because I was tired of eating everything in the area around my workplace. With this lack of options in mind, I was forced to try Chop’t.

Chop’t is a chain of restaurants that make chopped salads, assembly line style. It’s like Chipotle, but for chopped salads. The only difference between chopped salads and regular salads is… that they chop the lettuce in front of you. That’s it. They have your standard, popular salads here, like the Cesar and the Cobb salads. Pricing is generally around ten dollars, but mostly higher than that. Also worth mentioning is that around lunchtime, there is often a line going out the restaurant of people wanting to get Chop’t.

I’ve tried the Cesar and a southwestern salad, among others. It’s all right and priced a dollar or so higher than other salad makers in the area. I think what I noticed most about Chop’t or this Chop’t in particular is the kind of people who come here. The people here are generally well dressed employees who are pretty rude and pushy. I don’t know what it is about this location, but I could feel the pretentiousness of everyone coming in here and the way they treated the service people as well as other customers was disgusting. At first, I thought it was my imagination, but the customer base of people who come to this specific Chop’t location are generally pretty shitty. Every time I’ve come here some lady cuts me in line at the register/salad assembly or pushes/shoves me. I’m not sure why this is occurring, but something about this chain of chopped salads seems to attract these kinds of people.

Overall, the salad wasn’t great. Coming here is a chore because I have to  deal with these assholes who frequent the Chop’t at Bryant Park. There are other salad makers in the area who do it for cheaper for the same or better quality of salad. These other locations are also less crowded and offer more ingredients into their salads for about the same price.

Score: 3.7/10