Summer food classics and where to get them
In the summer, there are certain foods that you just have to have. Here are our picks for where to get them…
Celebrity chef Marc Murphy serves his luscious lobster rolls with fresh tarragon and parsley, served on a buttered potato hot dog bun with sweet potato chips on the side. 29 Bedford St. and 100 W. 82nd St., ditch-plains.com
Red Hook Lobster Pound
Despite being devastated by Superstorm Sandy, the Red Hook Lobster Pound is back this summer with a vengeance. The brick and mortar shop in Red Hook is a great place to grab a roll because you can head to the nearby Valentino Pier to enjoy it, but Red Hook Lobster Pound rolls can be found across the city, too. They’re served both Maine (celery, herbs, mayo) and Connecticut (warm butter) style. You choose. 284 Van Brunt St., Red Hook, redhooklobster.com
Luke’s also has outposts across the city in addition to a food truck. They serve their lobster rolls Maine style, and add lemon butter and a secret spice blend but you can opt for no mayo, butter or spices. We recommend against this. While lobster by itself is a true culinary delight, with it’s gentle tangy flavor, the folks at Luke’s are master’s, and they have perfected their rolls. lukeslobster.com
Soft shell crabs
Crabs are a pain to eat, but with soft shells, you eat the whole darn thing. Get them while they’re in season, which usually lasts through the end of June.
Chef Alex Stupak is serving soft shell crab tacos at his freewheeling Mexican restaurant. The crabs are coated in masa tempura and are served with epazote and thyme flavored oven roasted tomatoes and lime mayonnaise. 105 First Ave., empellon.com/cocina
The newly re-opened Fatty Cue in Williamsburg is serving everyone’s second favorite crustacean (or is it your first?) two ways. The ‘Cue’s Crispy Soft Shell Crabs are served with crab curry and a side of market greens or as an open-faced sandwich. 91 S. 6th St., Williamsburg. fattycue.com
When one normally visits a steakhouse they order, well, steak. But highly-regarded BLT Steak is serving a crispy soft shell crab dinner with Chorizo Sofrito and saffron aioli. We recommend ordering this in place of your N.Y. strip. Or, in addition to it! 106 E. 57th St., e2hospitality.com/blt-steak
While nothing beats a backyard barbecue, perfecting your barbeque to the level of the best spots in the city is close to impossible.
Mighty Quinn’s Barbecue
Thick cut, juicy spare ribs and pulled pork are what you order at Mighty Quinn’s. The other options are delicious too, but if you want to luxuriate in the delicious flavors of barbecue, you’ve been told. 103 Second Ave. and Smorgasburg, mightyquinnsbbq.com
Hill Country’s barbecue is done Texas-style, meaning it’s dry rubbed. The lovingly-prepared meat at this award-winning, pit-smoked joint is good all the time, but Hill Country is also celebrating 6 years in business tomorrow night. We’re guessing the barbeque could taste just a bit sweeter. There will be specials, including Shiner Bock (a Texas beer for sale for the first time in 104 years) floats. 30 W. 26th St., hillcountryny.com
Perhaps the first spot to cater to the high-minded barbecue crowd, Fette Sau offers what one would hope from a Williamsburg hot spot: long lines, rotating kegs of craft beer and some of the best dang BBQ around. Don’t miss the “Berkshire Belly,” aka bacon. 354 Metropolitan Ave., Williamsburg, fettesaubbq.com
Hot greasy chicken in the blistering sun? Makes sense to us?
It’s worth a trek to the Upper West Side to dine on this fried chicken prepared — and served — many different ways. A true-neighborhood spot, Jacob’s prides itself on housemade pickles, jams and the like, which are great, but sink your teeth into the tender chicken with some of those said pickles on the side and you’re in for a real summer treat. 509 Amsterdam Ave., jacobspickles.com
At celebrity chef Marcus Sammuelsson’s beloved Harlem restaurant Red Rooster, fried chicken is practically embedded in the hotspot’s DNA. It’s offered two ways: with waffles, chicken liver butter and bourbon maple syrup (heart attack!!) or with white mace gravy, mashed potatoes and bread and butter pickles. So, depending on how you feel that day, you can get down true Harlem-style. 310 Lenox Ave., redroosterharlem.com
This Meatpacking District see and be seen restaurant is also very interested in creating serious food for serious eaters. The fried chicken is a perfect example. Rubbed in jerk spices and then finished witha subtle glaze of orange blossom honey, this dish adds sophistication to a down home classic.85 Tenth Ave., willowroadnyc.com