New York Dog House

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I’ve wanted to share some love for New York Dog House for a while now. I finally captured a few shots over lunch the other weekend. So, here it is!

It was a sunny Saturday, but Chelsey and I skipped the sunshine in search of a bar to watch the World Cup. We wanted a welcoming, relaxed atmosphere so we settled on New York Dog House.

NYDH offers a thoughtful spin on the classic hot dog. The menu caters to a variety of tastes, from the “Far East Dog” (num pang topped with sesame chili paste, pickled daikon and scallion) to the “Cowboy” (cheddar bratwurst smothered with caramelized onions, crispy bacon, pickled chipotle, and house BBQ sauce). There are also several vegetarian options, including various salads, macaroni and cheese, and a veggie dog made of a farro and market vegetable blend. The restaurant also features an extensive list of seasonal and signature craft cocktails named after your favorite dogs or Astoria spots.

cocktails-astoria

We started with drinks. I sipped on the “Summer Fling” – a lovely blend of gin, St. Germain elderflower liqueur and seasonal ingredients. Chelsey enjoyed the rum, whiskey and brandy infused “Pitbull.”

grilled-cheese-nydh

For lunch, Chelsey ordered the sausage grilled cheese with spicy kielbasa. She noted that the portion was just right for such a robust sandwich. I opted for the “California Dog,” substituting weisswurst for cheddar bratwurst. The topping consisted of a mix of fresh avocado, sliced lettuce and springy red onions. The light toppings and hearty bratwurst were quite delightful.

california-dog-astoria

Check out NYDH’s Twitter, Facebook or Instagram for news and events.

More NYDH love:
Astoria Arrivals: New York Dog House – We Heart Astoria
Welcome to the Neighborhood: New York Dog House – Tastoria Queens

spring bucket list

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Lately, the weather has been toying with the thought of spring. So like many Queens residents right now, I’m dreaming of picnics at Astoria Park, a crisp ale at Bohemian Hall or an impromptu day trip to Rockaway Beach.  Fortunately, spring is a week away and we’re slowly wakening from the winter hibernation. Here are a just few spring activities I’m looking forward to:

Astoria Flea & Food at Kaufman Astoria Studios
Every Sunday May-June

MoMA PS1’s exhibition “Taster’s Choice”
March 23-May 25

Outdoor brunch at new restaurant Marketa
Every Saturday!?

Astoria Bookshop’s Creative Writing Workshop with Emily Herzlin
April 10

Relaxing at Gantry Plaza State Park in Long Island City
Every Sunday?!

Conquering a spring dessert, like these lemon, poppy and chevre cheesecakes with rhubard

snowdonia

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Last Saturday night, Baalok and I ventured to Snowdonia, a cozy, trappist-style gastropub. Tucked away at the corner of 35th Avenue and 32nd Street, the neighborhood spot serves local craft beer and quality pub fare. Many of the signature dishes feature the beer selections on tap as ingredients

The atmosphere is immediately warm and inviting. Dining benches line the tables and soft industrial pendants add a nice glow. For an appetizer, we shared the Ploughman’s Plate – a plate of ricotta cheese, house-made olive tapenade, pickled onions and pork spread. I’m not sure my palette is refined enough to have appreciated the pork. However, the fresh ricotta, juicy olive spread and perfectly pickled fat slices of onions were so good. I mean seriously good. Served on lightly buttered, grilled bread, the ingredients blended into a simple delight.

Baalok ordered another delight – the last steak-frites left for the night. Like many men, he has very high standards for steak. I’ve never heard him say a steak is good. He only mutters a doubtful, “It was okay,” or grumbles about an overpriced dinner. BUT for the first time in our 3-year relationship, he said, “Wow. That steak is really, really good.” (!!!) Really, really good means he loved that 16oz rib eye. Apparently, it was absolutely cooked to perfection – juicy and tender with just the right amount of seasoning. I don’t even eat beef, but that meal looked downright mouthwatering.

On the other side of the table, I enjoyed a generous portion of mussels soaked in a beer broth. The P.E.I. mussels were equally satisfying – plump and tasty. We topped the night off with glasses of Peak Organic Fresh Cut Pilsner while “Superbad” played on the TVs above the bar (a nice change from the typical sportscast). We both left in a happy daze patting our swollen food bellies. The relaxed environment, great service and delicious food were right on point. We can’t wait to go back.

Follow the Trappist Times for Snowdonia’s food and drink specials and upcoming events. Another plus, they also serve brunch.

oliver’s astoria

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Every so often, my boyfriend (a.k.a. Baalok) and I ventured out into Astoria with no plans – no set street direction or restaurant. Slowly, these wanderings turned into our special weekend night ritual. Saturdays transformed into our time to reconnect after the long workweek through unexpected food finds. So last Saturday (nicely complementing the start of New York City Beer Week), we happened upon Oliver’s Astoria, the slightly new pub at the corner of Broadway and 38th Street.

Oliver’s offers 16 rotating craft beer selections with a twist on typical bar food.  We started with a round of beer – an Allagash Hugh Malone and an Allagash White – and a cheese plate. I hate to confess that I only liked the cheese plate, though I suspect this has more to do with my high expectations of cheese. (It’s serious. Baalok affectionately calls me his lil cheese monger).  Baalok ordered the chicken sandwich. Coming from the South, I thought it was pretty good – just crunchy enough on the outside and moist on the inside. Baalok must have agreed because that sandwich was gone in about 10 seconds. I enjoyed the truffled mac n cheese – a nice, creamy concoction of white cheddar and parmesan topped with panko breadcrumbs.

We finished dinner with two pints of Empire White Aphro. It was refreshing with hints of lavender, honey and ginger. If I was sick and wanting to drink, Empire White Aphro would be the drink of choice. All in all, Oliver’s is welcoming with nice staff, good food. Guys can enjoy a game with buddies or take a girl out for a nice night. Don’t miss the happy hour specials – 2 for 1 drinks (and it’s not just Pabst or Miller Lite!).