345 Park Ave S. New York, NY 10010 • (212) 686-1006 • uplandnyc.com
Once upon a time this place used to be called Manzanilla, a terrific restaurant that for some reason caught the venom of the New York Times food critic, and had to close its doors less than a year after a brutal and undeserving one star review. Which brings me to my next point- Manza-who? Just one bite of Upland’s porchetta and egg sandwich and I completely forgot all about what’s its face. Served up with a nice helping of hot peppers and placed on a wonderful mini ciabatta- it’s yabba dabba delicious!
But if the sandwich was hog heaven, the Eggs in Hell (pictured) can only be described as hedonistic. Fried and floating in a spicy marinara sauce that is bread-sopping bodacious. Such an inventive twist on huevos rancheros I almost find it hard to categorize it as such.
On the less inventive front, the pancakes are also quite good, but not quite as interesting as the other dishes. And lastly, the citrus salad with olive oil and bitter chocolate shavings was a little too simple for my tastes. Not that it wasn’t good, but it was a little too simple for even me, and I like simple. Just not so simple that I could make it at home, just as well, in less than five minutes. It is nice and refreshing though, especially next to the heavier plates.
Such a great meal I can’t wait to come back for lunch and dinner, because everything else on the menu looked pretty ridic as well. So glad this new tenet is as good as the old. Guess this space just has good restaurant juju?
1 E 161st St. Bronx, NY 10451 • (212) 993-7189 • parmnyc.com
Being that I am a big fan of Torrisi and Carbone, it became a moral imperative that I try Parm. Not the one in Brooklyn, unfortunately. The little stand in Yankee Stadium. Now I’m sure that the actual restaurant offers a significant bump in experience, but ideally if you are going to put your name on anything, from a food truck to a concession stand, it should live up to that name. So, yes, I am going to judge Parm by my very myopic sampling.
Now, one might start to presume from my opening that I am about to open a can of whoop ass on Parm, but one might also be wrong.
I must admit, however, when I first saw the sandwich on a burger-style bun I was a bit disappointed. After all, isn’t the hallmark of a parm to be on a long roll? And the fact that the egg parm was served cold was another blasphemous decision according to staunch egg parm tradition. Things were definitely not looking good.
But tasting good was a different matter. Shame on me for ever doubting the prodigal sons, because this parm is parmfection. Bone simple with on point ingredients that don’t hide behind mounds of melted cheese. It’s just magically sautéd eggplant, spicy marina, fresh mozzarella (not melted) and an almost brioche like bun. And together, it’s Wonder Twins activate! Form of a killer egg parm!