NYC Travels Part 2: Recommendations

Posted on January 21, 2012


I wrote about the vast differences between choosing a restaurant in a small town on the plains in Oklahoma and the city where I live, Nashville.  I was looking forward to my trip to New York, knowing that I would eat well in the city.   The question was where.

I was in Manhattan.  I had an infinite number of options and some of the best choices in the world at my disposal.  I did not want to waste the opportunity.

The indecision I deal with living in Nashville, a viable food town but still a much smaller city, was magnified.  The difference here, was that I didn’t know anything.  Or at least hardly anything.  All I had were travel guides, Urban Spoon, and whatever recommendations I could garner.   All of these resources are as good as the people behind them;  you are hoping you get the best and right information.

I pulled a little bit from each.  I remember using paperback travel guides, which would provide great depictions, but could have you deciding between two places on the opposite ends of the earth.   Urban Spoon was useful, because it sorted options by neighborhood.  Since we were staying in SoHo, many great choices were within walking distance.

I decided to call the front desk.  The front desk clerk recommended a nearby Italian restaurant, Savore.  I have a love / hate relationship with Italian restaurants.  I love the food.  I hate getting on the scale the next day.  I pressed a little more.   I also learned of an Asian restaurant, Mooncake Foods.  I liked having another choice.

As soon as we walked by Mooncake Foods I knew it wasn’t the place for dinner.  The lights were bright and the restaurant was empty.  It looked like a better place for lunch.  My wife and I kept walking.

With our first option out, we started reading menus on the doors.  We found one we liked, but when we waked inside, we realized we could not sit near the window and watch street traffic.  We nixed this location as well.

A block down, we noticed a comfortable well kept dining room with plenty of seating by the windows.  We again stopped and read the menu.  The fare was Italian, with a respectable number of Antipasti and Salad choices, to go along with the Entrees.  We had scoured around enough.  We decided this would be it.

Once we chose our seats, we were handed bright yellow menus with crimson letters that displayed the name of the restaurant, Savore.  This was the front desk clerks recommendation.   There was a sense of irony, in that we chose the best recommendation we were given.   We didn’t trust it at first, but were able to come to it on our own terms.

The meal was great, with one of the highlights being the Belga salad.   We started the trip 1 for 1.

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