He’s a self described "foodie" and one of those friends that I’ve known so long that I can’t remember how we met. I just remember in our 20s, I used to have these parties at my house, where I invited my inner circle and asked everyone to take off their shoes. Kareem’s shoes were always lined up neatly by the door.
In the midst of our adulting, I don’t see him with the same frequency that I once did :-( But I keep up with his NYC adventures on Instagram (@fortgreenereem) and he’s always eating at amazing-looking places I usually haven’t heard of, which is crazy, seeing as how, you know, I'm out a lot and I actively research where to go and what to do, especially in my home city, NYC, for a living. Everytime he posts from a restaurant, I screenshot his pics for further investigation.
Instead of continuing to e-stalk Kareem to find out where I should be eating next, I decided to stop being weird and ask. LOL. He came through with his Top 10 Must Eats in NYC.
My perfect haunt for entertaining work colleagues and team Dinner outings. Service is seamless and the Executive Chef creates a slew of killer dishes.
SoHo– Energy! Energy! The moment you walk in the vibe hits you. It’s one-of-my-many date spot’s. Upscale seafood at its best! Although snagging a table can be somewhat competitive, buttering up the maître ‘d always work in your favor. (Editor's note: There's also a LURE in Miami.)
Jamaican food at its best! Nothing against their Houston Street location, but I ONLY dine at their East Village eatery! Only! Why? The hard liquor offerings are plentiful and food servings are extra generous! When I can’t make it to my Mom’s, you’ll find me perched in a banquette munching away for Sunday dinner.
5. Ai Fiori
When feeling romantic, I suit up and dash over to Ai Fiori for a nice candlelit dinner. The service is exceptional. The sommelier recommends the best wine pairings . Their pasta are sinfully delicious. I’m sure because it’s made in-house daily.
Nestled in the epicenter on Time Square, you would never expect to find this high-quality-good-tasting restaurant here. Since discovering this gem, it’s normally a must-eat-at before attending any Broadway show.
When you seek quality food, you travel all lengths (literally) to get it. Very addict-like behavior one would say. There’s been countless times I have UBER’d from my apartment (in the wee hours) in Downtown Brooklyn to Harlem just to get their steamed seafood. (Editor note: El Puerto is open 24 hours.)
8. The NoMad
It was love at first sight when I walked in the darkly-lit environs of The NoMad. The attentiveness from the waitstaff is superb with a capital “S” . Also, they own of the art of cocktailing with ease! Please order the “Start Me Up”, their spin on the Whiskey Sour. Bar Director Leo gets it right every time. Their tasty roasted chicken will have you throw dining etiquette to the rear and licking them fingers!
I discovered this Italian restaurant on an overnight trip in Southampton. I loved everything about it: al fresco dining, gorgeous staff, and not overly fussy atmosphere. (All elements I dig from a restaurant). When I stumbled on their outpost in SoHo just imagine how overjoyed my foodie-heart was!
10. Quality Meats
The title: All pun intended! The folks at Quality Meats know a thing or three about steaks and meats in general. My lips have never tasted a more succulent bone marrow like the one at QM. Varying off the protein for a second, don’t deny the monkey bread and truffle butter either. Please don’t.(Editor's Note: There is also a Quality Meats outpost in Miami).