Telepan Local

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On the quiet path of Greenwich Street, keep your eyes peeled for the unassuming door and entrance that lead to Telepan Local in TriBeCa, because you won’t want to miss it. This restaurant has a really lovely aesthetic, clean, a little woodsy with an emphasis on unique, liberally placed mirrors. Food wise, the restaurant’s focus is on American style, small plates, locally sourced and seasonal food. 

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The great thing about small plates, is that it allows you to try a bunch of things during one dining experience. The first thing I tried was the Asparagus and Ramps (lemon ricotta and sorrel). This was really nice, the vegetables almost take on a savory flavor, similar to that found in an Asian dish. To offset that a bit, the lemon ricotta is creamy, almost yogurt like, and has a bit of that zest from the lemon. 

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Next, I had the Shaved Artichokes (faro and fried parsley). I really liked this one. The artichoke had a nice citrus flavor, and the faro was tender. The fried parsley was great too, it added a nice, light crispness and airy crunch to the chew and meatiness of the faro. 

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Then, I had the Grilled Octopus (red wine and almonds). I loved this one, the octopus was savory, tender and had this great char on the outside. The leaves here are lightly dressed, and have a nice vinegary bite from the pickled red onions. Then, you have the rich creaminess of the almond sauce with little bits of crunch from some added chopped almonds. 

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After that, we had the Sourdough Pizzette (fried calamari ‘marinara’ and romano). I really enjoyed this one too. The top of the dough almost has a creaminess to it, but then a great crunch around the edges and bottom. The calamari is a little on the bland side, but, the texture was a nice contrast with that of the creaminess and crunch of the pizza, and the sharp flavor of the cheese. 

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Of course, I had to get dessert too. I had the Apple Pie Sundae (deconstructed apple pie, cinnamon and vanilla ice cream, caramel sauce, apple pie filling). This was the perfect ending to this great meal. The ice cream is creamy and rich, I especially liked the cinnamon, and really adds to the apple pie filling and caramel, letting you feel like you’re having an apple pie a la mode. It’s also confected with these little crunchy bits, similar to a sugar crusted dough, that adds a nice little crunch to the dish. 

The Shorts:
Name: Telepan Local
Location: 329 Greenwich Street
The Long and Short: Would I go back? Yes, there are lots of other delicious sounding plates that I’d really like to try. 
Would I recommend it? Yes, the octopus and sundae were so great, I’d come back just for those. 

Eli Zabar

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When you think of old school, classic New York, you might think of delis and bakeries. Well, decades later, Eli Zabar is still a staple in Manhattan with more cheeses, meats and snacks than ever. With a few locations in NYC, you’ll be sure to find one, or, you can go to Grand Central, which I did as part of my Grand Central Tour

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Since I’m a bakery connoisseur (at least I’d like to think so), I had to go that route and focus on all of the treats they had to offer. Now, they have a wide variety of things from fresh baked breads, to pastries, to cakes, so, it was a little tricky for me to even decide. But, my eyes finally settled on something I don’t usually see in most places.

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I got their Hazelnut Meringue Shell. Although its about the size of my hand, it’s light as can be. I’ve made my own meringues before, but none as festive and decadent as this one. It’s light, and the meringue itself melts in your mouth, but the flavor is rich with caramel woven throughout and pieces of hazelnut folded in. 

The Shorts:
Name: Eli Zabar
Location: Grand Central Market (43rd Street and Lexington Avenue), NYC
The Long and Short: Would I go back? For sure, way too many things to try. Or, to just get another one of their Meringue Shells (they have a few other flavors). 
Would I recommend it? Yes, a New York staple for sure.