August 26, 2015

I have two favorite things in the world. One of them is bar food and the other is alliteration.

Anyone who has ever given up on their gym membership knows about Wing Wednesday, where local bars and restaurants discount their wings to a cent value for one particular night a week – and because I am sure they love alliteration just as much as I do, they are usually on a Wednesday.

August 3, 2015

Arthur Avenue reminded me of a compact and consolidated Mulberry Street, featuring dozens of authentic Italian restaurants, bakeries, and little shops. There were so many places to choose from, we honestly stopped into the first place we found, where a gaunt Italian man was standing outside singing an old Italian song. Or Bruno Mars, it was hard to tell. The restaurant was called San Gennaro. 

July 23, 2015

So, it’s not very often that I, The Hunger James, have the opportunity to visit restaurants categorized with 4 dollar signs. 3 is usually pushing it. But, after meeting downtown at work, my boss decided to treat us for a job well done and took us to The Capital Grill, located just across the street. 

July 14, 2015

One of my favorite places I have discovered is The Smith, and if you have lived in New York long enough, you should be well aware of this amazing establishment. With three locations in the city, at least one of them should be convenient for you to get to for a lovely meal. 

June 30, 2015

Randomly finding unique restaurants that offer drink specials and affordable meals is one of my favorite things about this city, and last night was no different. Starving from a long hard day at work I stumbled upon this quaint little place in the West Village called 100 Montaditos that – just as the name explains – has 100 montaditoson the menu.

June 11, 2015

I enjoy going out with friends and collectively decide on what we should get to share. I really feel you can tell a lot about someone by the types of tapas that they eat. Those who say “let’s get a few orders of patatas bravas and the mac and cheese” are my best friends. Those who want to get “an order of green beans for the table” are people I have since deleted from Facebook. 

June 5, 2015

Don’t Worry, Bibi Happy is the tagline of Bibi Wine Bar located in the East Village, and it is impossible to be anything but happy when you go here for happy hour after work. Most happy hours in the city knock off a dollar for draft beer and end around 6:30, which is insane because who even gets out of work that early to enjoy a $7 bud light? 

May 28, 2015

I just found out five minutes ago that today is National Cheeseburger Day! How the hell did I not know about this? Honestly, to me, every day is National Burger Day, but I figured in honor of today, I would make a list of my top 10 favorite cheeseburgers in the city. This was a very (very) difficult list to make… 

May 28, 2015

A few weekends ago, my friend and I ventured out to Brooklyn to visit the Raaka Chocolate Factory for a tour. Since Brooklyn is horribly inconvenient, we ended up missing our tour because we needed to take 2 trains, a cab, and a boat just to get to the factory. Trying to make the best out of a bad situation, we decided while we were in a new area, we might as well enjoy it.

May 26, 2015

I have lived in Astoria for a little under a year now, and I am always surprised at the abundance of great restaurants are in the area. It seems like every time I go for a walk (which is rare because I’m lazy as shit) I find a brand new restaurant to try. 

May 11, 2015

There is nothing that makes me happier than alliteration – especially if that alliteration encompasses two of my favorite things: meatballs and martinis. 

May 8, 2015

There is a place on Stone Street in the Financial District of Manhattan called Bavaria Bierhaus, complete with wooden benches and girls dressed in lederhosen. In case you haven’t been to Stone Street during happy hour on a beautiful spring day, it’s PACKED with Wallstreet kids decked in suits just getting off a brutal number-crunching day. 

May 6, 2015

Little Italy is one of my favorite areas in the city when it comes to eating good food at a reasonable price. Normally, all of the restaurants located on Mulberry Street are pretty similar, so it doesn’t really matter which ones you go to. But, the last time I ventured downtown, I went to Gelso & Grand for an innovative take on classic Itlaian dishes. 

April 20, 2015

I love cheeseburgers, if you couldn’t tell. And I am always in search for the next best burger. Whenever I go out to eat to a new restaurant, I always want to try something new. Something I don’t get to eat very often. But, more times than I am afraid to admit, I order a cheeseburger and fries because I am too hungry and too nervous to try something I may not like

April 16, 2015

This past week, I went to Chicago for work. Sure, I was looking forward to being in a new city for a few days, but what I was really excited about was the opportunity to try a new restaurant with some of Chicago’s best and most famous food.

April 4, 2015

I am a creature of habit and I am not very fond on trying new places. Sometimes, sure, I am in the mood to just browse Yelp! for an hour, reviewing menus and trying to select a place for dinner. But honestly, most of the time I am contempt with a Hot Pocket or the Outback Steakhouse. 

March 27, 2015

The Cellar, as you would expect, is located in the basement of a working cheese factory and shop and offers a fantastic eat and drink happy hour special with discounted drinks and 7$ meals, all while sitting in a really comfortable and intimate atmosphere, only lit by candlelight. Very romantic.

March 16, 2015

My favorite holiday is just one day away – St. Patrick’s Day. The day where we switch out our drab black and grey wardrobe to a bright green blazer, listen to bagpipe music on Spotify, and drink beer. A lot of beer. 

March 9, 2015

This past weekend, my friends and I woke up at a decent hour on Sunday morning, popped two advils to cure the morning hangover, dressed to impress (ahem, Rebecca) and headed out to brunch.

February 18, 2015

Food, this year, was my Valentine (unlike last year when Netflix won over my heart). Food is always there for me. It never breaks my heart. Food is patient and food is kind. And we had a wonderful time together. 

 

February 11, 2015

With Valentine's Day coming up, are you ready? Here are some of my favorite NYC restaurant ideas for you and your significant other to go to and celebrate. 

February 3, 2015 

When you think of a grilled cheese, you think of one of the most popular comfort foods. But, when you live in NYC, a grilled cheese is so much more. It’s innovative. It’s art. And, it’s competitive. Last Sunday, I spent my afternoon NOT in my sweatpants watching Dawson’s Creek, but out in SoHo at The Big Cheesy: a Grilled Cheese Tasting and Contest. 

January 16, 2015

Ok, by now you all know I quit my “No Dairy for a Month” Challenge. Go ahead. Be upset. Be disappointed. I completely understand. It’s just that…cheese is a huge part of my life. And it’s my shtick. I can’t have a food blog, rate my meals with CHEEZITS and not eat any dairy. It’s just not right. 

December 31, 2014

As the end of the year approaches, we tend to sit back in retrospect and think about the past year. The memories we made, the places we traveled, the stories we shared, and most importantly, the food we ate. 

December 26, 2014

While everyone was busy traveling back to their hometown for the holidays, my roommate and I decided it would be nice to spend Christmas in New York City. 

December 24, 2014

With Christmas just around the corner, I decided to throw a small dinner party for my closest friends before everyone heads home for the holidays. Knowing my apartment was too small and that I can’t cook for one, let alone ten, I made a reservation at La Bella Vita in scenic Little Italy.

December 22, 2014

Some people wait all week for the weekend to finally come so they can meet up with friends, drink tons of alcohol, and sleep in. I wait all week so that I can eat.

December 17, 2014

This past weekend, my fantastic friend Jeanine invited me to be her date to her company’s Christmas party in Orlando, Florida. “There will be food, drinks, and dancing” she teased. “I’ll be there,” I told her. “You had me at ‘there will be food’.” 

November 28, 2014

Yesterday was every food lovers dream: Thanksgiving! I am sure you are all still in a food coma – believe me, I am too. This post is going to be a little different than my others, mainly because this year, my roommate and I decided to cook an entire Thanksgiving dinner for ourselves. 

November 25, 2014

Not a year goes by where I don't leave the cold weather in New York and head down to Orlando, Florida. Even at 28, going to visit Disney still makes me feel like a kid again. Check out my latest culinary adventures.

November 20, 2014

Three weeks ago, my good friend Danielle and I were invited to a Food Blogger’s Happy Hour in Midtown. It took place at a bar called Latitudes at 7:30, so we decided to grab a bite to eat after work so we could catch up and not be the first ones there, waiting at the bar, desperate for someone to talk to us. (This still happened, but more on that later). 

November 12, 2014

For those of you that didn’t know, I turned 28 this past weekend. And just like every good celebration, my weekend was filled with friends, fun and most importantly, food. Usually on my birthday, I plan a big dinner at one of my favorite restaurants, The Outback Steakhouse. 

October 29, 2014

Sunday night, desperate for a place to get a few drinks and a somewhat cheap dinner, my friends and I returned to one of my favorite - and extremely underrated - restaurants in the city: The Barrel.

October 14, 2014

There is a place in Astoria that I pass on my bi-monthly runs that I have been meaning to check out. It is called “Winegasm” (ugh, I know) and is located on 37th street and always has a chalkboard out front bragging about nightly drink specials. 

October 6, 20143

There is this little place in the East Village called Cork n' Fork, and it is one of my favorite restaurants in the city. I would call it a tapas restaurant, while some people just refer to it as a wine bar with a really nice bathroom. 

October 1, 2014

For the month of July, I participated in a Vegetarian Challenge, and since that was actually a lot of fun, I decided I needed to do a new month-long challenge. But what would it be?

September 29, 2014

I spent my Sunday just like many of you did: Woke up at noon, ordered two bagels and cream cheese on Seamless, illegally downloaded a movie and took a nap. When I woke up around 5:30, I opened my fridge and saw two sticks of butter and a Coors Light bottle. I needed to go grocery shopping

September 17, 2014

For anyone who knows me, you know how much I love a good deal. Whether it is the 5$ movie bin at Walmart or a bogo special on a pair of kicks from PayLess, I am a happy camper. Maybe this is why I love when bars have .25 cent wing nights (or, I just really like chicken wings, whichever).

September 11, 2014

Forgive me followers, for I have sinned. It has been one month since my last post. I am sorry, kind of…but not really. Since the end of July, I have been busy eating all of the meat I could find. I have been putting pepperoni on my pizza, chicken in my pasta, and bacon on my everything. It’s been really wonderful.

August 4, 2014

This past Sunday, I had my first ever encounter with a food truck.

 

Living in New York City, where food is as ubiquitous as yellow cabs and the sweet, smell of garbage, I had yet to order food from a truck, van, or even a Honda. It wasn’t until my vacation to Fort Lauderdale that I ate my first meal prepared in a vehicle.

August 1, 2014

Today was the day. The last day of my 31-day vegetarian challenge. Over the course of this month, I ditched the bacon and the chicken and the ground beef and replaced them with vegetables (and lots of cheese). The first few days, I thought it was going to extremely difficult and I started to question my purpose in life. “Why would I give up bacon? Bacon makes me happy. Why am I choosing to give up happiness?” I would ask myself, night after night. I really did not think I could do it.

July 31, 2014

Today I went back to my hometown, Melbourne Beach Florida to get some much needed R&R….and to visit my parents.

 

Usually my first night back, my parents take me out to my favorite restaurant: The Outback Steakhouse. But, being still in the month of July, going to Outback would be absolute torture for me. So, I asked them to do some research and pick out a place that I would be able to eat at.

July 31, 2014

I apparently love BareBurger.

 

What I love most about it, aside from its convenience and location is that they have a wonderful vegetarian menu – something you may not be able to guess from the restaurant name.

 

July 29, 2014

There is a supermarket across the street from my office that has one of the best lunch buffets I’ve been to since Atlantic City (read all about Sultans Feast here). I went there today to see if they had some grilled vegetables, pasta or mozzarella sticks.

 

They didn’t. Everything was meat. All of it. Apparently Morton Williams is not following my 31 Day Challenge.

July 28, 2014

My friend and I were going stir crazy in the house today so around 6 we decided that it was a nice day to sit outside and drink. So, we went to this restaurant/bar in Astoria called Oliver’s because they had a pretty good drink special going on.

July 28, 2014 

Before you even start: Today was my cheat day.

For the third time since this challenge began, I went to the Cheesecake Factory for dinner. What? I like their bread!

July 25, 2014

Oh my God, you guys. I made the best pizza tonight.From Day 1 of my challenge, I really wanted to make a homemade pizza one night because it seemed easy, fun, and cheesy.

 

I looked up recipes online for the perfect pizza that had goat cheese as its main ingredient. Goat cheese, to me, is such an underrated cheese and is probably one of my favorites. 

July 24th, 2014

There is nothing better – or happier – than leaving a long work day and meeting up with a friend for dinner and drinks. And that is exactly what I did on this glorious Wednesday night. I met up with a friend downtown (well, 25th street) for happy hour at a bar called Rogue. 

July 22, 2014

Today for lunch, I tried out this new bodega by my office, which I will refer to it as “The Fancy Bodega” mostly because they take credit cards. I went over to the hot foods area to see what they were serving today.  Fried calamari, sesame chicken, and beef with broccoli. Not being able to have any of them, I decided to get creative.

July 21, 2014

Last week I went to a restaurant in Astoria called Il Bambino and had an out-of-body experience with a roasted eggplant Panini. Desperate for those 15 minutes of euphoria again, I went back to Il Bambino for brunch.Not only do they have an amazing selection of Panini’s and crostini’s, but they have a pretty decent sized brunch menu. 

July 21, 2014

There is a place in the Flatiron district called Beechers, and it is a cheese shop slash restaurant. They have some of the best cheeses in the city, and also one of the best happy hours.

My friend and I went to the Cellar @ Beechers for a quick dinner before a concert. Having both been there before, we knew what to expect, but were still very excited about the food.

July 21, 2014

Now, if you have been reading The Hunger James, you know I love a good chain restaurant. Outback, Fridays, and even Applebee’s on some occasion. I don’t know why I love chains so much. Maybe it’s because that’s all I knew in Florida, so eating at a Ruby Tuesday makes me feel nostalgic?

July 18, 2014

As soon as noon came around, my stomach was growling and I knew I needed to leave my office and pick up some lunch. I couldn’t get my normal “2 BLT’s”. And I can’t eat a salad twice in one week. So, I went downstairs to Subway to see what kind of vegetarian options they had.

July 18, 2014

I was sitting on my couch, minding my own business, when my roommate came barging in carrying three huge bags from Carmines. She had family in town, so naturally, they went to Carmines – the best Italian food in the city. Besides the Olive Garden. She took out all of the food containers and said, “I hope you’re hungry!” I pulled out the first one: Chicken Parmigiana. I pulled out the second one: Chicken Marsala.

 

July 16, 2014

THIS IS MY HALFWAY POINT.

I cannot believe I have made it this far – Especially with so much temptation being thrown in my food path. First my friend put a piece of bacon on my plate. Then there was the time I accidentally ordered a salami sandwich. And then, just tonight, my roommate came home with an entire Chicken Parm entrée from Carmines and said, “I won’t tell if you won’t…”

July 15, 2014

Normally for my lunches during the week, I cook a big meal on Sunday and portion it out for Monday through Friday. But, if you read Sunday’s post, you will see that I did absolutely nothing all day. So, today I had to walk the streets of Manhattan looking for a delicious and affordable lunch.

July 15, 2014

Sundays are supposed to be spent in front of the TV and napping on the couch, right? Because that is literally all I did. The only time I put on pants (pajama bottoms) was when I went out to get my 2 bagels and cream cheese for breakfast. I put in a good five to six hours on my Netflix account and then, before I knew it, it was time for dinner. Not in the mood to go out (and put on pants) and definitely not in the mood to cook, I did the next best thing: Seamless.

July 14, 2014

Saturday, I went to a Met’s game at CitiField. Normally, a baseball game is a great atmosphere to chow down on hot dogs, cheese steaks, and just meat on a stick. But not today! Today I had to walk past the Nathans’ hot dog stand, the baskets of chicken tenders, and the Shake Shack. Ignoring the Shake Shack was probably the hardest thing I have ever done.

July 13, 2014

Tonight, I left the bright lights and busy streets of Manhattan and ventured through the Lincoln Tunnel back to New Jersey.

I lived in New Jersey for three years and in that time, I had experienced some of the finest culinary institutions in the Garden State. From Outback Steakhouse to Red Robin to The Cheesecake Factory and Houlihans, I really enriched my palate.

July 11, 2014

Desperate to get out of the house, I ventured to Il Bambino in Astoria for dinner and wine.

My roommate and I have a list of restaurants that we want to try in the area, and this was next on our list. And, thankfully, they had a wide variety of vegetarian options.

July 10, 2014

After being yelled at for eating mozzarella sticks and a quesadilla the past two nights, my roommate veered me back on track tonight with a roasted potato and quinoa salad.

I walked in the door, grabbed myself a Bud Light Platinum, and took a look at all the ingredients that would soon be my dinner. Asparagus, lemons, a red onion, and a jar of Dijon mustard were all lined up on the counter. 

July 9, 2014

Desperate to get out of the house, I begged my friend to meet me for dinner so I could have something “fun” for dinner and not my normal 3 grilled cheese sandwiches.

Oh, and to socialize and catch up. But…the food was more important to me.

July 9, 2014

I know what you are all thinking: “It’s about damn time you posted about mozzarella sticks!”

I am actually pretty surprised that it took a full week of this vegetarian challenge for me to eat mozzarella sticks, having them be my favorite food group (yes, mozzarella sticks get their own section in my food pyramid).

July 7, 2014

Today I was feeling adventurous and experimental, so I decided to cook (from scratch) a vegetable lasagna. Usually on Sundays, when I’m not napping or sleeping on the couch, I like to make a big meal that can be portioned out in little Tupperware containers for my lunches for the week.

July 5, 2014

When my roommate and I went to Whole Foods the other day, we filled up our cart with plenty of vegetables to make our stuffed peppers and spinach quiches. Now, on a lazy Saturday, what better breakfast than to throw everything into a pan, add in six (organic) eggs and make an omelet!

July 4, 2014

Today is the fourth of July. A day (usually) spent at a BBQ, smelling the scent of hotdogs and hamburgers grilling in a backyard somewhere.

But not this year.

Originally, when I made the pact to go vegetarian for the month, I was going to allow myself to eat a hot dog on the fourth, because patriotism.

July 3, 2014

Today after work, my roommate introduced me to hell. Hell is the Whole Foods in Columbus Circle at 6:00pm.

Before today, I had never been inside of a Whole Foods before, and I have to say, I was extremely anxious throughout my entire shopping experience. Everyone in the store was so thin and weak, they could barely push their shopping carts full of quinoa and asparagus stalks.

July 2, 2014

Ok, first off, I honestly thought that vegetarians could eat fish, so that is why I got a tuna burger for lunch. Secondly, I have never (ever) eaten fish before in my life. Sure, my mom force-fed me fish sticks when I was a child, but the amount of fish in those breaded sticks is questionable. Plus, I always just spit them into my napkin when she wasn’t looking. Or filling up her wine glass. (I was a very neglected child.)

July 1, 2014

For the month of July, I have decided that I am going to cut out meat from my diet and live a vegetarian lifestyle. For some, this seems like an easy challenge. But for me? The guy who puts bacon on his peanut butter and jelly sandwiches? This is not going to be smooth.

June 9, 2014

For those that do not know, I recently relocated to Astoria, New York last week, and there are SO many restaurants I am dying to try. I asked my friends who live in the area for some great restaurant recommendations and each and every one of them mentioned Sweet Afton over on 34th and 30th. “They have amazing macaroni and cheese,” they said.

I was sold.

May 22, 2014

As mentioned in many previous posts, brunch is one of the best things to do in the city. Especially now, with the weather (finally) warming up, going to sit outside on a Saturday, enjoying a delicious meal and a alcoholic beverage is the perfect way to waste an afternoon. And this past Saturday was no different.

 

May 9, 2014

There is a restaurant in Melbourne, Florida that is pretty famous. If you are from Brevard County, you have been there to celebrate at least one birthday or special occasion, and you definitely went there for your junior prom. The restaurant I am referring to is Makotos.

April 19, 2014

Since there was a polar vortex the past six months in New York, I decided to take a mini-vacation and cruise to the Bahamas. Having been on my fair share of cruises in the past, I knew what to expect: umbrella drinks, sea-sickness, and food. Copious amounts of food would be laid out at all hours of the day, allowing passengers to stuff their faces with everything you could think of. 

March 25, 2014

One of the best things about New York City is the food. And one of the best meals in New York City is, yes you guessed it, eating at a food truck at 3am in the Lower East Side, giving you all of the nutrition you need to make it back to your house (or to the next bar for last call).

The second best meal in NYC is brunch.

March 20, 2014

Trying to save money, I went to the grocery store the other night to buy food and try this whole “cooking at home” thing. I usually spend 60% of my paycheck on food, while the other 40% is spent on alcohol and a match.com subscription. While perusing the aisles at the Path Mark in Weehawken, New Jersey, I was completely overwhelmed.

March 14, 2014

…wrapped in bacon.

 

While everyone was escaping the cold in their apartment, swaddled in blankets and binge-watching House of Cards(something I do every night), I went out to dinner.

March 7, 2014

When people think of New York, they usually think of two things: the skyscrapers and Jay-Z. And tourism. And crime. And homeless people. And streets that smell like urine. And…

Ok, I am getting off topic. Usually after tall buildings and mediocre rappers, New York is most famous for its (drum roll please) Food! 

 

February 26, 2014

One night on the way to happy hour, my friend and I were walking the streets of the East Village trying very carefully to step over the puddles of slush and, more importantly, to find a place to eat dinner. We knew that even a drop of Bud Light was going to make me extremely intoxicated, so finding food before getting drunk seemed necessary.

 

February 11, 2014

Aside from the food, one of the best things about going out to dinner is the company and conversation. It is so nice to just sit back and relax, enjoy a bottle of wine, and relish in time spent with good friends. Clearly, the food is my favorite part, but there is something amazing about getting together with friends to share a meal that cannot be topped.

February 6, 2014

Astoria, Queens is quickly becoming my favorite place to grab a bite to eat. Located just minutes away from the city, this quaint borough of New York City is populated with some of the city’s coolest people, greatest bars, and trendiest restaurants.

January 25, 2014

Last night, I celebrated the end of a stressful week the best way I knew how: I went out to dinner. I know, most people my age usually de-stress with a glass of wine or an herbal substance. But me? I de-stress by food.

Food, has been and will always be, a great form of comfort. 

January 17, 2014

…Just in case anyone was wondering.

January is a funny month, right? Everyone has just made their New Years Resolutions, and for the month of January, we are all doing our best to stick to them. From going to the gym 4 times a week (whoops) to only drinking on the weekends (whoops) to writing in a journal everyday (whoops), we strive to stick to our resolutions.

January 8, 2014

This is my first post writing about something I made – so please, be good to me.

And those are the words I said to the box of ziti, jar of tomato sauce, and 4 different types of cheeses: Please be good to me.

January 4, 2014

In the midst of 7 inches of snow, last night I ventured out to Astoria, Queens to say goodbye to a dear friend leaving the cold for warm and sunny California. She was having her bon voyage party at a place called The Strand Smokehouse – a local beer garden slash BBQ restaurant.

January 2, 2014

I know maybe eating fried food with cheese and pig fat for every meal is not the best thing for my cholesterol, but it just tastes soooo good! But, as the year was coming to a close, I sat down at a Dunkin Donuts and pondered about how my eating habits should change.

December 30, 2013

…is FOOD.

For the holiday break, I was lucky enough to escape the cold and snow and spend a week in warm, sunny, 80 degree Florida. Yes, it was 80 degrees in December. My days were filled with tanning out by the pool, drinking frozen mojitos, and wearing shorts and flip flops to Christmas mass.

December 22, 2013

My 27th birthday was over a month ago, and during that time, I was blessed and spoiled with gifts from my family and friends. Clothes, money, dinners, and a gift card to a restaurant in New York City called “The Baconery.”

December 10, 2013

This past Sunday, my friends and I decided to be hip and trendy and go for brunch. It was a good excuse to get out of bed, shower,  shave, and put on clean underwear. Oh, and to hang out with friends.

November 29, 2013

For any of you that have been living under (Plymouth) rock, yesterday was Thanksgiving, which is the holiday of the three F’s: Family, Friends, and Food. Out of those three, clearly my favorite part of Thanksgiving is the food.

November 18, 2013

For anyone that didn’t know, last week was my 27th birthday, and it was the best birthday yet! Well, except for my fourth birthday where my parents rented out a McDonalds Play Place for a few hours.

November 14, 2013

A few years ago, when I lived in Florida, I would see commercials for Red Robin Gourmet Burgers every fifteen minutes. The pictures of juicy burgers, crispy French fries, and that ever-popular “Yum!” slogan would be stuck in my head for days. 

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