137 4th Ave
(between 13th St & 14th St.)
New York, NY
Rustic store front complete with wooden counter
Inside is reminiscent of Chipotle
Carnitas soft taco
Grilled Chicken burrito before
Grilled chicken burrito after
The search for decent Mexican food in the city is one step closer to over; Dos Toros offers delicious (and so far the best) Mexi-Cali style burritos and tacos in New York. The basic menu offers burritos, tacos, quesadillas, and plates with choice of meat filling.
Surprisingly, tortilla chips and dip are nowhere to be found. Located a block from Union Square, Dos Toros has superb burritos and will always be a stop whenever I’m in the area.
The carnitas taco had a generous helping of slow roasted pork shoulder served on a soft corn tortilla. A thin slice of mild white cheddar (I think) is laid on right before steaming the tortilla with toppings that are simple but tasty: pico de gallo and choice of medium or hot salsa. I skipped the guac (92 cents) and hot sauce as I wanted the pure pork experience. And what an experience it was: the meat was shredded juiciness, with just the right amount of porkiness and spice. The generous helping of pork in the taco included oh-so-good pockets of melted fat/cartilage that elevated this carnitas above all others. You MUST order this taco.
The burrito was just as good if not better; it was too close to decide. I am partial to chicken burritos and try them as often as I can but this one is definitely in my top 3 of all time. You can taste real grilled char in the chicken chunks and I am guessing they used dark meat such as thighs instead of the bland and flavorless breast that is usually used. Again, the meat was cooked to perfection and was moist and chunky. The rice was definitely a contributing factor to the awesome burrito. It was flavorful, light, and spiced to complement the other ingredients exactly. A very tasty and more importantly, well-balanced burrito indeed.
Judging by the carnitas and chicken burrito, everything is good!
The meat fillings rocked, best mexi-cali in Manhattan
The wait, lines can form out the front entrance
The carnitas craving. Make sure to order enough for yourself and others who may be salivating.
Hide Chan Ramen Factory
248 E 52nd St.
(between 3rd Ave & 2nd Ave.)
New York, NY
Unassuming entrance to 2nd floor. Note requisite red ramen latern.
Hakata Kuro Ramen with “mayu”, $11
The varying surface in a bowl of ramen looks back at you.
Black garlic oil can be ordered separately
Hide Chan is an authentically run Japanese ramen house in the Midtown East area of Manhattan. There is cramped table and bar seating in this narrow venue but all appearances aside, the star is the ramen. More specifically, Hide Chan offers a pork based broth, tonkotsu, which is richer and my personal favorite. They also offer an addition I have never heard of before: “mayu” or roasted garlic oil which is dark black almost like used motor oil in color and consistency.
Overall the ramen was delicious; above average but not spectacular. The broth was rich and not oily, very balanced. The mayu topping does add to the unique appearance of a black yet edible and tasty crude oil slick in your bowl but with a surprisingly mild flavor of roasted garlic. The mayu itself has the mouthfeel of very fine powder suspended in oil with a pleasant roasted aroma; a fine addition to any hearty ramen broth. The noodles were cooked to perfection however I prefer the springy wavy noodle rather than the straight. The pork charsui was a letdown however as you only get 2 thin slices of swirled pork. As was the size of the entire dish, the portion of noodles and soup was unsatisfying. Now if you doubled the quantities, you would have a fine contender for a top bowl of ramen.
Hakata Kuro Ramen with mayu, a solid bowl of ramen with perfect pork broth and al dente noodles.
Sapporo on tap (sugoi!)
The pork topping is sparse and overall portions small for what you pay.
The pork buns, DO NOT order.
When the craving for ramen rears its head, make sure you have a ramenya like Hide Chan nearby.
– Chief Ramen Officer