Roberta’s. Shrimp Roll.

Roberta’s is the coolest restaurant in New York City.  So cool, it needs it own ON THE REAL category to prove this bold, but accurate proclamation. On Moore Street just off the corner of Bogart in East Williamsburg sits her incredibly unassuming entrance to a former garage.  The interior is adorned with a mishmash of found wood panelling, benches, tables and wall hanging chattel rounded out with a healthy dose of non-pretentious tattooed personality. The pizza they create in that big old oven in the front kitchen and the plates they churn out of the back is simply perfect.

I had the shrimp roll on a recent visit. Simple is the word of the day here, but simple can be perfect and my meal was. The shrimp was exquisitely cooked and lightly tossed in mayo with a little bit of chopped tarragon. The bite coupled with the perfectly cooked-that-morning-out-back-in-a-wood-fired-oven and buttered roll kinda made me want to cry. The addition of the freshly picked, roasted and salted fingerling potatoes on the side make the meal flawless. I washed it all down with a Dean’s Dream which is an up concoction of blanca tequila, lime, mole bitters and cracked black pepper.  Amazing.

Lulu was desperately trying to get a peek at the Tiki Disco happening behind the plywood walls in Robert’s garden; a former junk yard. And that is part of what sets Roberta’s so far apart from the rest.  The owners have willingly jumped into so many fires over the last couple of years. They run the Heritage Radio Network. They grow as much of the food they serve on premises and get whatever else they can from Brooklyn Grange..the massive rooftop farm in Long Island City. They throw everything from raging feasts with bonfires, to a garden dinner series, to neighborhood block parties, to beach parties at their place Ripper’s at Rockaway Beach. And, if you want to go seriously upscale, they have the $180 a head tasting menu at Blanca right next door.  ON THE REAL is going to go in-depth on all things Robert’s over the coming months.  Hope the shrimp roll and a shot of a longing three-year-old is enough to start.

About the Author |
We earn our living selling New York City. The next day is never like the last. The last is never ordinary. We witness all sorts. We listen to the City’s noise. We devour its phenomenal food. On the Real is our documentary. It is your pack of unfiltered New York 100s.

The Local. Mile End Sandwich.

The folks at Mile End have been wowing taste buds in Boerum Hill since late 2009 with their incredible (and incredibly priced) Montreal-style smoked meat sandwiches. In May, they hopped over the river and opened a spinoffon Bond Street in Noho.

A serious danger to my health as it is on my route to the office every morning, Mile End Sandwichis open for breakfast. It has sucked me in twice in the last week with their preposterously good Breakfast Burger.

That’s a veal sausage patty with a sunny-side-up fried egg, cheddar cheese, apple butter and maple syrup on an English muffin…a wonderfully gooey and heart-stopping combination. In the interest of at least appearing that I try to stay healthy, I had their surprisingly crisp and tasty celery soda to wash it down. Madness for the mouth!

About the Author |
We earn our living selling New York City. The next day is never like the last. The last is never ordinary. We witness all sorts. We listen to the City’s noise. We devour its phenomenal food. On the Real is our documentary. It is your pack of unfiltered New York 100s.

The Local. James.

It has been said that Brooklyn has the best food out there right now and Jamesin Prospect Heights resoundingly affirms that proclamation.

To celebrate the 4th of July, the kind folks at this homey joint at the corner of Carlton and St. Marks Avenues put together a exceptional menu of tasty treats. Among the notable were a Kobe beef chili dog with mixed bean salad, a delicious lobster roll with roasted corn salad and this my-jaw-hit-the-table-when-the-server-delivered-it ceviche with paprika dusted popcorn. Insanity.
Also, notable was something they have on their menu every Monday night (Burger Night)…The Lamb Burger. Cumin dusted lamb with warm goat cheese, melted Cippolini onions, sesame semolina and smoked paprika fries.

The way the melted and charred onions intermingled with the creamy goat cheese and perfectly cooked lamb was simply divine.  The cocktails at James were serious winners as well and unlike most places in the neighborhood, James is open for lunch every day except Monday and brunch on weekends.  This place just climbed to the top of our long list of favorite places for a meal.

About the Author |
We earn our living selling New York City. The next day is never like the last. The last is never ordinary. We witness all sorts. We listen to the City’s noise. We devour its phenomenal food. On the Real is our documentary. It is your pack of unfiltered New York 100s.

The Local. Better Being Underground.

Tucked away under a hard-to-find stoop on St. Luke’s Place is quite possibly the best place to get a sandwich in New York City.  Better Being Undergroundis tiny and crowded, but so worth the trip/wait/search for the most amazing lunchtime creations.

These people mean business.  Seriously.  The Rauschenburger: Seared Tuna Burger, Avocado, Chipotle Mayo, Sprouts, Brioche Bun.  The Radical Roll: FRESH LOBSTER ROLL w/Spiced Lemon Butter on Toasted Potato Hot Dog Bun.  The Baja: Sofrito Roasted Chicken Tostada, Avocado Chiptole Crema, Pinto Bean, Salsa Fresca, Queso & Lime.  I had the BLC: Crispy Soft Shell Crab, Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato, Chipotle Remoulade, Toasted Dutch Roll.

It was rediculous.  In fact I’d like to have another one.  Right now.  Try to get there early as the best stuff runs out by early afternoon.  But whenever you get there, enjoy!

About the Author |
We earn our living selling New York City. The next day is never like the last. The last is never ordinary. We witness all sorts. We listen to the City’s noise. We devour its phenomenal food. On the Real is our documentary. It is your pack of unfiltered New York 100s.

The Local. Little Lahore.

Talk about unobtrusive, Little Lahore Deli is a proverbial hole in the wall on Crosby Street, but it has some seriously kick-ass Indian, Pakistani & Bangladeshi dishes. You can feast like a king on fresh chicken biryani, saag, spicy chickpeas and potato samosas for about $8. Yep, you heard right: an $8 lunch in Soho.

 There’s a reason there’s a line of cab drivers out here at lunchtime. It’s great!
About the Author |
We earn our living selling New York City. The next day is never like the last. The last is never ordinary. We witness all sorts. We listen to the City’s noise. We devour its phenomenal food. On the Real is our documentary. It is your pack of unfiltered New York 100s.