East

East Hotel Simon-von-Utrecht-Str. 31 – 20359 Hamburg, Germany • +49 40 309933 • east-hamburg.de

To sum this place up before I even begin, it’s Peruvian meets Asian meets Gaudi meets catacombs. An odd combination by most accounts with trendiness pouring out of every crease and crevasse, but somehow it all works. From the projection of tropical settings on the twisting white walls, to the deer antler wine racks and the polyp ornamented bar, you’d think you were back at Iridium near Lincoln Center in the 90’s.

But acid trip-inspired décor aside (pictured), the food impressed. Starting with a decent showing in the sushi department- but the clear winner of that course is the tuna tataki. This is a must-get. No seriously. If you don’t I will hunt you down and force-feed you.

Other top dishes were the red Thai curry boasting some kick-ass heat and moist-ass fish. The salmon poke was also the shiznit. Fresh and flavorful and smarter than your average bowl! Both are strong winners in the entrée round. The duck and the ribeye, however, were just okay.

For sides, ya gotta give it up for the truffle fries. And for dessert, I say skip the chewables and go for the liquid. The liquid tiramisu that is. Holy caffeinated hangover batman! Might just be an Ultimate in two categories at once- Cocktail and Tiramisu.

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Sanaa

Animal Kingdom Lodge 3701 Osceola Pkwy. Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830 • (407) 939-3463

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I’m guessing Indian and African fare is few and far between in the rest of the country, but by New York City standards, there’s a place this good, or better, every ten blocks. But that’s only in reference to the food. The service was actually pretty slow. They took us late for our reservation and ultimately sat us across from the service station in a half empty restaurant.

Now as for the food, skip the lamb sliders. They are VERY dry and therefore don’t “slide” anywhere. They just sit their in your mouth begging your saliva ducts to bring a little moisture to the party.

Then there is very mild fish curry dish that is so mild it’s not even worth remembering the name. Apparently mild means boring to the chef. Fortunately there is a spicy curry dish as well, and it is MUCH better, meaning I actually ate it. In fact, it was so much better than the fish, I dumped the fish into the spicier sauce just to make it worth opening my jaws.

The only other thing we had at the table was a special fish dish, which was a solid good, but a far cry from the stars people are throwing down on TripAdivsor and Yelp in praise of this extremely mediocre restaurant. But please don’t think I’m just some New York Foodie Snob (granted I am) hating on Disney. There are two other restaurants over at The Boardwalk Hotel, that blow Sanaa out of the water jungle, Cat Cora’s Kouzzina and Flying Fish Cafe.

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