Our 10 Best 100 Dishes to Eat Now

M. Wells' burger.
M. Wells' burger.
Tracy Van Dyk

Way, way back in July, we began compiling a list of 100 Dishes to Eat Now. Our countdown ended on Wednesday with the publication of our annual Best Of issue. But once you live with something every day for three months, it's a little hard to let it go, even if you know it's best for the both of you to just shake hands and move on. So in order to bask just a little longer in the golden hue of vicarious consumption, we've decided to round up our 10 best 100 best dishes. The last hurrah, after the jump.

Porchetta's roasted carrots.
Porchetta's roasted carrots.

10. Dish No. 96: Bun Bo Hue From Thanh Da: "The brick-red beef broth tastes of long simmering, deep and dark, spiked with chiles, lemongrass, and shrimp paste, which adds an elusive salty savoriness. It swims with great hunks of braised beef and slithery rice vermicelli, along with scallions and cilantro."

9. Dish No.91: Roasted Carrots at Porchetta: "[They're] roasted in olive oil until they're caramelized and creamy, and then dressed with a bit of pomegranate molasses and a shower of cilantro. The molasses gives a tart edge to the root vegetable's natural sweetness, and the cilantro lends verve without overwhelming the dish."

8. Dish No. 17: Razor Clam With Scallion Pesto in the Shape of a Peacock at Szechuan Chalet: "No, it's not really a Sichuan dish, and it might not really even be Chinese, but the razor-clam offering at this Upper East Sider is spectacular -- a daikon head carved in the shape of a peacock body, with a carved carrot plume and feathers."

7. Dish No. 56: Market Vegetable Salad at Strong Place: "Tired of the same old tossed salad? Nothing about the market vegetable salad at Strong Place is conventional: not the enoki mushrooms that lie atop like sod on a prairie hut; nor the slightly bitter frisée undercarriage; nor the thin-sliced summer squash (which you may have mistook for cucumbers); nor the novel vinaigrette, which contains roasted hazelnuts, producing a subtle wood-like flavor in addition to a pleasing crunch."

6. Dish No. 82: Chicken-Fried Chicken Livers at Cornbread Diner: "The beauty of the chicken-fried chicken livers is the batter: craggy and crunchy, generously salt-and-peppered, piping hot and greaseless. Inside their crusts, the soft chicken livers offer up mild, mineral sweetness. You'll eat your way through the generous pile of them in no time."

Next: Dishes 5 through 2 ...

 

First Prize Pies' peanut butter pretzel pie.
First Prize Pies' peanut butter pretzel pie.

5. Dish No. 48: Taïm's Sabich: "The savory warmth of the eggplants, the cool rejoinder of the salad, the crunch of the cabbage, the creamy congress between the egg and the hummus, and the pungent snap of the amba sauce bestow upon the Sabich an embarrassment of sensory and textural riches."

4. Dish No. 78: Seafood Combo With Hot Sauce at Randazzo's Clam Bar: "The glory of this dish is the thick, tangy, spicy tomato sauce. It was invented by Helen Randazzo when she took the restaurant over from her father, a fish salesman, in 1960. The 'hot sauce' is deployed in great ladlefuls, poured over steamed lobster, fried clam strips, shrimp cocktail, and more."

3. Dish No. 80: Hamburger at M. Wells: "The hamburger is really a pair of scrumptious beef patties -- cooked medium rare and still gloriously juicy inside while crusty and blackened on the exterior -- deposited in a pair of steamed Chinese dumplings. The bun is vaguely Changish, isn't it?"

2. Dish No. 89: First Prize Pies' Peanut Butter Pretzel Pie: "The creamy peanut butter filling tastes like peanuts instead of sugar, and is just sweet enough to amplify the saltiness of the pretzels. The thin puddle of hardened chocolate cracks and splinters in a satisfying way when you bite into it, and the delicate graham cracker crust -- really more crumble than crust -- echoes the crunch of the pretzels."

 

Our 10 Best 100 Dishes to Eat Now

1. Dish No. 39: Sea Intestines at M & T Restaurant: "The worm looks a bit like beige ziti, and has the texture and mouth feel of a garden hose. It can be had cooked several ways at M & T, a pleasant restaurant in the south Flushing outback. Shown here in a stir-fry with garlic chives, the worms can also be marinated and served in a room-temperature salad, or prepared by several other methods. Just ask the helpful and creative chef, and he'll cook sea intestines any way you want."


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