CHICOJULIO

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Love, love, love margaritas and tacos, well, all Mexican food for that matter. So, I went to check out CHICOJULIO on the Upper West Side.

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This Cantina-style restaurant offers live music, and, when I was there, it was by way of a three-piece jazz band. Not necessarily what you’d expect from a Mexican restaurant, but actually a really nice surprise and touch. The aesthetic is clean, yet vibrant in color, and definitely goes with the tasty selection of food and drinks. For a beverage, I ordered The Smokey Cucumber (Blanco Tequila 100% Agave, Fresh Cucumber and Lime Juice, Egg white, Agave nectar, Chili infused Mezcal). I really liked this, the drink was smooth, with a refreshing crispness from the cucumber and lime, and followed by a little heat and smokiness from the chili and Mezcal. 

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To start, we had their Guacamole (made to order with tortilla chips). You can choose your preferred level of spice, which I really liked. The chips had a great crunch, and went very well with the rich, creaminess of the guac.

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For my entree, I ordered their Trio Taco De Atun (Seared sesame crusted tuna loin, white cabbage, chipotle aioli, lemon zest, served on corn tortilla). This was so good. The portion is really generous for such an affordable price, and the ingredients are fresh and abundant. I loved how substantial the rare tuna was, and how flavorful and delicious the whole dish was. 

The Shorts:
Name: CHICOJULIO
Location: 768 Amsterdam Avenue, NYC
The Long and Short: Would I go back? For sure, the food and drinks were great and the ambiance was very fun and charming.
Would I recommend it? Definitely. I recommend going for dinner on a night when they have some live music, it makes everything a bit more vibrant.

Irving Farm Coffee

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By no means is Irving Farm Coffee new to NYC. In fact, almost 20 years ago, they opened up their first location at 71 Irving in Gramercy. I’ve been going for years, and figured I was way past due on a post for these guys. 

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They roast everything here in NY at a farm in Hudson Valley, keeping the focus on sustainability and building direct relationships with the coffee farmers. In their cafe, they also offer an array of baked goods and pastries, including a Rice Crispy Treat about the size of your face. 

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I usually order an Americano. The coffee is robust yet smooth, and vibe in the cafe is nothing shy of quaint. There are a number of little tables in the subterranean cafe, and you’ll usually find them all full.

The Shorts: 
Name: Irving Farm Coffee
Location: 71 Irving Place, NYC
The Long and Short: Would I go back? Well, being that I’ve been going for years, as long as they’re still there, yup, I will for sure be back.
Would I recommend it? Definitely. They offer great coffee, great snacks, and a cozy little space to enjoy your beverage, get some work done, or catch up with a friend. Warning, you have to be on your table-grabbing game, they’re a hot commodity.