Here are the 10 things I couldn't get enough of food-wise in 2013, in no particular order. I went into detail about a few of my absolute favorites first. What are some of the best things you ate this year? Let me know in the comments.
1. Muddy Buddy Popcorn at Sweet Noshings
Sweet Noshings has more than a dozen flavors of popcorn, and I tried three or four when I went there. I have forgotten what other flavors I tasted (though I remember they were good) because the extreme deliciousness of the chocolatey, addictive Muddy Buddy flavor wiped my memory. I bought some and could hardly keep my paws out of the bag long enough to photograph it for the Holiday Gift Guide.
Go here for a full post and contact info for Sweet Noshings.
2. FGTBLT at Sweet Grass Next Door
When I go to Next Door with a friend, I have a system: order the Arugula Salad (bleu cheese, honey pecans, heaven, etc.) and the Fried Green Tomato BLT and split both. The sandwich has the usual BLT part in addition to thick slices of green tomatoes fried to a crisp, and tangy pepper relish. All this goodness is served between two pieces of slightly sweet milk bread with a side of house made chips. I'm not gonna lie: it tends to fall apart when you eat it, but it's worth it. I recommend the Green Fork cocktail (cucumber vodka, st. germain, ginger beer) to go with it.
Go here for a full post and contact info for Sweet Grass Next Door.
3. Gina Bellina Pizza at Aldo's Pizza Pies
This year, I discovered that I'm a fan of New York style pizza and that Aldo's is my favorite place to get it. While the slice of the day is usually my choice, if I'm going to get a whole pizza, I go for the Gina Bellina, which has some of my favorite things on it: sundried tomatoes, goat cheese, and spinach. I order it without olives and add chicken. (Sorry, world, I've tried to make olives happen for me; it's not going to happen.) The flavors are punchy, and the crust manages to be thin without emulating a cracker.
Go here for a full post and contact info for Aldo's Pizza Pies.
4. Roasted Brussels Sprouts at Alchemy
These aren't your grandma's brussels sprouts. Or at least, probably not*. When you order the Roasted Brussels Sprouts (which are in the "To Share" part of Alchemy's menu for a reason) you get a heaping plate of perfectly roasted green sprouts, bacon, and bits of apple, all tossed in a brown sugar vinaigrette. You know how when you order a dessert for the table and no one wants to take the last bite, but everyone is itching for it? That is what will happen if your table gets an order of the brussels sprouts.
*If your granny made brussels sprouts like these, I would like to meet her.
Go here for a full post and contact info for Alchemy.
5. The Stanley at Tamp & Tap
This is currently my favorite sandwich. I can't stop ordering it. It's one of those situations when you think "maybe I'll try something different this time…yeah, no I'm gonna get the usual." This turkey sandwich (served on brioche) has so much interesting stuff on it – artichoke aioli candied bacon, pickled red onion, and arugula. I'm not sure how to describe the resulting flavor, it's savory and tangy, but still fresh and not too heavy. Bonus: The Stanley, like all the sandwiches at Tamp & Tap, is named after an old-timey car.
6. Peanut Butter Pie at Hog and Hominy
A friend and I went to Hog and Hominy a few months ago and ordered half a dozen plates to share. It was extreme, and I mean that in the best way possible. I could have easily included any one of the dishes we had on this Top 10 list. It was a tough call between the meatballs, the beet salad, the maple bacon gelato, and the peanut butter pie, but in the end, the insanely indulgent pie was my favorite. There are at least four layers of sweet magnificence: crust, cream, rich peanut butter, more cream on top, and then a generous sprinkle of sugar. I think my mouth is still tingling from all the sugar, which I am totally OK with.
Go here for a full post and contact info for Hog and Hominy.
7. Chicken Enchiladas Verdes at Las Delicias (either location). I promise there are enchiladas under all that wonderful verde sauce/avocado/tomato/sour cream. See also: best chips and guac in town.
8. BBQ Brisket from The Rendezvous (at the restaurant or at FedExForum, pictured here is the platter from the latter).
9. Tato Cakes at Three Angels Diner. Applesauce and sour cream is essential. Photo courtesy of my brunch buddy @alliemounce.
10. Southwest Chicken Salad at Holiday Deli. Bonus points for being the only healthy-ish drive-thru option in midtown.
And that's my Top 10. What's on your list?
…Until next year, happy eating!