The Latest Pines Picks — Updates and New Picks

I’m glad you have found my blog! The restaurant scene in New York City is always changing and I’ll be using this as a way to keep you up to date on the changes and share my new finds. I hope you’ll check back often or subscribe for updates through RSS feed or email so you can be kept up to date. After all, I don’t want you to have to wait until the next edition of Pines Picks to know about my discoveries!

Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana

One of the best pizzas in the world.

Pepes Pizza 1I have never had a more impeccable pizza experience in my entire life. Pizza is one of my favorite foods and New York City has some truly great pizzerias. Before trying Pepe’s Pizza, I would most definitely say that there is no place nearly as good as New York City in the USA in terms of delicious Pizza. But, after trying the pizza at Pepe’s, I can whole-heartedly say that I have a new favorite. From the delicious White Clam Pizza (sounds odd, but perfectly light and salty) to the unbeatable Margherita Pizza, the pizzas are no short of perfect. Both pizzas have crunchy, yet delicate crust, tasty sauce, and are super thin in the middle. The Margherita had fantastic mozzarella cheese
topping, while the White Clam had a nice garlic flavor and no sauce, but it was piled with tiny cuts of clams.

Pepes Pizza 2Pepes Pizza 3








All the ingredients make amazing pizza, but the key at Pepe’s is the old, unbelievably hot oven that fires the pizzas to perfection.

Overall, I had a tremendous experience at Frank Pepe’s in New Haven and would recommend it to all pizza lovers.

Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana
157 Wooster St, New Haven, CT 06511
(203) 865-5762

Black Velvet Cupcake

Black Velvet CupcakeAt Sprinkles, until the 30th, there is a special cupcake: the black velvet cupcake. With almost as thick as a fudge like texture, sure dense, rich chocolate cake, and darker chocolate icing, the cupcake is delicious and worth a try, if you can get one. Hopefully they make them again soon.

The Doughnut Project

Doughnut ProjectI just got a chance to try the famous Doughnut Project and was very pleased. The famous “Everything Doughnut” that rocked the NYC food scene was deliciously weird. Also the “Peanut Butter Jelly Time” was outrageous.

The “Everything Doughnut” tasted like a sweet, soft version of an Everything bagel. With a slightly sweet icing and the Everything-style seeding, the doughnut is remarkably unique. The pillow-like nature of the dough makes for a delicious treat unlike any other.

The “Peanut Butter Jelly Time” doughnut is truly great. It has the same fluffy dough as the Everything but with a blackberry, purple frosting and is stuffed with peanut butter. Obviously, the combination is classic and works impeccably in this doughnut.

I highly recommend The Doughnut Project if you are either seeking something completely unique or a twist on the classic PB&J.

The Doughnut Project
10 Morton Street, New York, NY 10014
(212) 691-5000

Cafe Frida

Lunch Dish: Tampiqueña marinated grilled skirt steak, cheese enchilada, guacamole, Mexican rice and brothy black beans (refried beans upon request)

The other day for lunch I went to Café Frida for the first time. Unexpectedly, I had the most amazingly juicy skirt steak and a delicious cheese enchilada. With a nice saltiness from the steak and some fresh guacamole, the Tampiqueña dish is incredibly tasty. The red-colored sauce on the melty cheese enchilada is super tasty and adds to the unbeatable lunch. With some rice and beans on the side, overall it is a great find!

Café Frida
368 Columbus Ave., New York, NY 10024
(212) 712-2929

Momi Ramen – East Hampton

This weekend I tried Momi Ramen in East Hampton, New York. I have been to the Momi restaurants in Miami and was super excited to try their new restaurant in Long Island. I had an order of Gyoza and an order of Tan Tan Ramen. Both dishes were very tasty and delicious. The restaurant is fun—it has a giant television with a sports game on for the whole restaurant to see and a large communal table. They quickly served the juicy pan-fried pork gyoza which came all connected with a crunchy layer on each of the dumplings. They had a nice soft outside and a tasty sweet and tangy soy sauce-like dipping sauce. Next, I had the ramen which was soothingly warm on the freezing cold day. It was very, very good. The noodles have a slightly al dente bite; they are firm but hold the flavor of the spicy soup well. With the garlic and pepper marinated bits of minced pork and scallions floating in the almost red-colored broth, the dish was very flavorful. The ramen had a nice solid spice and made for a great meal. I highly recommend you go try Momi Ramen as soon as possible.

Momi Ramen
221 Pantigo Road
East Hampton, NY 11937

Coconut Cloud Layer Cake

By The Way BakeryI just went to the newly opened By the Way Bakery and loved their coconut dream layer cake. Super moist, with four layers of sweet coconut cake and icing, the cake is a delicious treat. Topped with lots of shavings of coconut, the coconut dream cake is worth trying.



By the Way Bakery

2442 Broadway
New York, NY 10024
(212) 877-0806

1236 Lexington Avenue
New York, NY 10028
(212) 988-3300

Eating My Way Through Tokyo

This summer I had the chance to visit Tokyo, Japan. Since I love sushi and Japanese food in general, I had a great time sampling authentic Japanese cuisine. I reviewed several restaurants and was featured in an article on Betty Confidential. Visit their website here to see my article.


Eating My Way through Hudson Eats

I enjoyed exploring all the offerings at Hudson Eats to find the dishes I can recommend as my favorites. I wrote an article about it that was featured on Betty Confidential. Click here to check it out!

Cronut from Dominique Ansel Bakery

cronutsI have been waiting a long time, and after many attempts, I finally got some authentic cronuts. After waking up at 6 am and getting to the bakery at 7 am, I waited an hour until the opening of the bakery. The flavor of the month is peach with bourbon creme and some citrus sugar. The cronut is decently sized, crispy on the outside from being fried and covered in sugar, topped with some icing and filled with creme. Like a croissant, the cronut has numerous layers and like a doughnut it has a nice fry and some delicious flavors. After the first bite, the juiciness of the oil in the doughnut fills your mouth with delicious creme and sweet tasting sugar. The sweetness from the icing and sugar make the cronut delicious. I can clearly see why the cronut is so famous. I don’t think I could down more than one of these at a time, but it definitely a treat.

Dominique Ansel Bakery
189 Spring Street (between Sullivan and Thompson), New York, NY 10012
(212) 219-2773


Patrica gnocciI finally got to go to the Italian Restaurant, Patricia’s, in the Bronx. I heard that the family of the owner of famous Sushi Nakazawa are the owners of Patricia’s. That being said, I was expecting a perfect meal: that is exactly what I got. From the lightest, softest potato gnocchi to crispy chicken parm to the super thin crust pizzas, the entire meal was unreal.

First, I had the gnocchi, which was by far my favorite gnocchi of all time. The light, delicate and soft potato dumplings are sensational. And, with the addition of a ton of Patricia’s great, sweet tomato sauce and a lot of melted, creamy cheese, it was fantastic.

Patricia chicken parmThen, I had the chicken parm. The crispiness of the chicken was the highlight for me. With the tasty, tangy tomato sauce and fine mozzarella cheese, it was just delicious!

I also tried the margarita pizza, which was very thin and had a good amount of sauce. It had a nice flavor from the basil. An overall very good pie.



1082 Morris Park Avenue
Bronx, NY 10461
( 718) 409-9069