Shake Shack: 2 Shackburgers and 2 Shake Stacks, isn't it just beautiful??
Soho Park: Burger + Lemonade = Perfect summertime lunch
1. Shake Shack (multiple locations)
I love eating in parks, so eating burgers in Madison Square Park is double awesome. Also these are supposedly the best burgers in NYC etc and are pretty much PERFECT. A single Shack burger makes me so happy, but the Shack Stack is a mushroom-cheese-meat behemoth that men seem to prefer.2. Soho Park (62 Prince Street, NY 10012, SoHo)
2nd fav burger in NYC, probably because the shredded lettuce is crunchy and healthy-feeling and doesn't make the whole burger slippery and sad. I also like this place because that's where I saw Thakoon walking his dog (!!!)3. Village Whiskey (118 South 20th Street, PA 19103)
Great pub vibes in the middle of Philadelphia. The burger... okay it is kind of restaurant-y. You know, looks nice but is really hard to eat with hands coz the patty is so thick and since you have a steak knife and fork on the table you might even feel compelled to eat it with cutlery which is LAME. But but it's a good burger, and they also have duck fat chips, and delicious oysters. Yay4. Bobby's Burger Palace (multiple locations)
I tried the one in Philadelphia's University City, but they have other locations. Great thing about BBP is that they have sweet potato fries. The burgers are HUGE and pretty darn tasty with tons of different styles to choose from. Also it's just downstairs of Rachel's house and has pick-up service.
Peter Luger: F***yeah, Medium Rare Beef Pillows
Luke's Lobsters: The most delicious sandwich I have ever had the fortune/misfortune to eat.
1. Peter Luger (multiple locations)
Photograph #1: I can't really compare this to other steaks in NYC, but it was exceptionally tender compared to any beef I've ever ingested. Blah blah best steak in NYC according to the Internets. The steak, medium rare, was so soft and smooth like angel baby bums. Still, I kind of like my steaks to have a stronger beef flavor. (This just means that if I'm gonna drop money on steaks I'll probably stick to Hawksmoor in London.)2. Luke's Lobster (multiple locations)
Photograph #2: $16 for a piece of toasted white bread w some mayo and what looks like a whole lobster's worth of meat? I wouldn't eat this for lunch everyday but O gawd the lobster meat is so sweet and juicy and soft. Intensely yummy, will haunt my dreams at night. At the same time, I'm almost angry at myself for eating such a great sandwich. How can I possibly face the mediocrity of Marks & Spencers' sandwiches again???3. Balthazar (80 Spring Street, NY 10012-3907, SoHo)
If you're looking for a Parisian restaurant or bakery I guess Balthazar is a pretty good way to solve your problem without a long transatlantic flight + dirty ass Paris metro. I didn't have time to visit but their baguette is truly excellent. Ate it with pesto for breakfast and it was a happy day.4. Kanoyama (175 2nd Avenue, NY 10003)
Their "omakase" is the cheapest I've ever seen - $39 for sashimi, $35 for sushi. Well, it's really just a sushi/sashimi platter but the selection is very diverse and it's all very fresh and tasty. If you like raw fish as much as I do, this is a pretty nice place. I kind of wanted to try Robataya though.5. Papaya King (multiple locations)
There are like 1 million hot dog stands and half them will suck. The other half will be completely forgettable, like a bespectacled woman on the subway. Sorry, I just don't really get hot dogs. To me the only 2 reasons a hot dog is good are: a. you can eat it anywhere, anytime, while holding a Blackberry in the same hand, while running away from policemen, ... and b. you can eat it with mustard. I love mustard. Still, I like Papaya King because it fulfills and exceeds all hot dog expectations. Probably because the sausages are actually meaty, hot and juicy and not just lame wannabes. Probably the only hot dog in the world I will happily eat again.6. Kenka (25 St. Marks Place, NY 10003, East Village)
Kenka is such a fun place to hang out!! Cheap drinks and weird Japanese decor(adult movie posters with mega awkward faces) AND free cotton candy at the end of every meal. The curry katsu here is Great. Everything just tastes better with friends and fun decor anyway :)7. Ippudo (65 4th Avenue, NY 10003, East Village)
I doubt it's worth waiting more than an hour for ramen, but apparently people queue for anywhere up to 4 hours for Ippudo. I waited for half an hour and that felt just about right, considering that the tables are stuck together and the service is pretty brash. The ramen soup is really awesome and porky. Get the spicy paste! You can order extra noodles, which is great for eating machine boys. Noodles are not chewy enough, but that's a personal preference.