izakaya mew – the pride of midtown


Midtown Manhattan has horrible food options. Ask any local and they’ll tell you. Midtown Manhattan is full of quick sandwich lunch options and crappy bars with decent happy hour specials. In other words, food options are usually geared towards the working masses. But since I live in Midtown Manhattan, I know three things: The food options really do suck. But they’re great if you’re looking for Korean. And if you’re not, there’s always Izakaya MEW.

32nd Street is known as “Korea Way” according to the street sign, but no one calls it that. It’s Koreatown, pure and simple. There’s a host of great Korean food in the area: Jongro (fantastic Korean barbecue), Miss Korea (not that great, but decent enough), and Food Gallery 32 (food court with good options but limited seating) all on 32nd Street, and Turntable Chicken Jazz (fried chicken!), KyoChon (more fried chicken!), and Cho Dang Gol (standard Korean) not too far away. In other words, I’ve had a lot of Korean food since I moved to Midtown. But otherwise? There’s Izakaya MEW, which I have been to waaayyy too often.

In basic, Izakaya MEW is a decently-priced restaurant with good drinks, good Japanese food, and a great environment. Its entrance is a fairly nondescript staircase leading down to its basement level, located right next door to Cho Dang Gol. The ramen isn’t too great, but I highly recommend their drinks, sushi, fried baby octopus, and potato croquettes. Wait times can vary from no wait to an hour, but they stay open quite late and in all honesty, there ain’t much else!

So yay for Izakaya MEW, you make Midtown less horrible!

Izakaya MEW
53 West 35th Street, Basement
(between 5th and 6th Avenues)
Midtown, New York, NY

burger joint

I’m not one of those girls who orders a salad at restaurants. The only kind of salads I like are Caesar salad and potato salad – neither of which is very healthy. So when I heard about this supposedly amazing burger place called Burger Joint, I decided that I had to try it. Well … that’s kind of a lie. It’s been on my list of places to try since last year, but I finally got around to it last weekend when a friend was in town and wanted to try an American burger.

Burger Joint succeeds in crafting its atmosphere more than its food. It’s located in the very posh, very sophisticated Le Parker Meridien hotel in Midtown. And then there’s this dramatic red curtain in the lobby, a narrow hallway, and voila … a very divey-burger joint, aptly called Burger Joint. But there’s also a long line, which is annoying because I hate waiting so long for food! The burger itself verged on mediocre and the meat definitely could have used more seasoning. I ordered mine with the works, so when I unwrapped it from its white paper … it looked pretty rough. Still, it was a fun place with a very random music playlist. Will I go again? Not unless someone else really wants to.