Eating NYC – Bouley, Donuts, and Pizza

Eating NYC – Bouley, Donuts, and Pizza

***This is part 5 of my “Plane-cation” trip report detailing a recent trip from San Francisco to New York, via Hong Kong***

1. Introduction
2. Singapore Airlines First Class San Francisco to Hong Kong
3. Cathay Pacific First Class Lounges: The Pier and The Wing
4. Cathay Pacific First Class Hong Kong to New York
5. Eating NYC – Bouley, Donuts, and Pizza
6. JetBlue Mint Class New York to San Francisco
7. First Class Showdown: Singapore Airlines vs. Cathay Pacific

As much as I enjoyed all the food on the plane and at the airport during my 40-hour journey to New York City, the real eating began after I landed in the Big Apple.

To kick things off, we headed over to Bouley, where we were fortunate to snag a last-minute lunch reservation. New York City is well-known for having great lunch deals at many of its fine dining establishments around town, and that includes Bouley, where they offer a very reasonably priced five course tasting menu for just $55 per person. Looking back, that’s an even better deal than I initially realized based on the quality and quantity of food that we received – you’d be lucky to spend twice that amount in San Francisco for an equivalent meal.

bouley restaurant nyc front door flowers

The experience started as soon as we opened the front door and entered into a man-made apple orchard that probably had over a thousand apples in here. As you can guess, the smell was intoxicating.

bouley restaurant nyc waiting room apples

The restaurant’s dining room was beautiful and the vibe was great – classy, upscale and fancy, but not in a pretentious or snobby way. Everything on the menu looked good, and there were about 3 or 4 options for every course. After making some tough choices, we placed our orders, and the feast began.

First up, I ordered the Hawaiian hiramasa and blue tin tuna sashimi, which was topped with caviar. I remember thinking how ridiculous it was that this was the third time I was eating caviar in the past two days.

bouley restaurant nyc blue fin tuna

My wife opted for the Malibu sea urchin which was topped with sour cream and caviar, and served in the shell. The dramatic presentation was really cool, and the sea urchin was incredibly fresh.

bouley restaurant nyc sea urchin caviar

For my second course, I had with the poached farm egg which was served with Serrano ham and polenta. The creamy polenta covered in runny egg yolk and paired with the salty ham made for the perfect bite. This dish was really spectacular.

bouley restaurant nyc farm egg

Between each course the bread cart came through, and there were at least 10 different types to choose from. Suffice to say, I pretty much sampled them over the course of our three hour lunch.

bouley restaurant nyc breads

For my main course I ordered the braised Kobe beef cheeks which were incredibly tender and flavorful, and were paired with gnocchi.

bouley restaurant nyc beef cheeks gnocchi

At this point in the meal I was stuffed, but knew that I had to mentally rally for dessert. And of course, they couldn’t let you out the door after just one dessert course – luckily both desserts were relatively light, otherwise I would’ve literally burst at the seams at this point.

This was a truly fantastic lunch, and once again, one of the best deals that you can get at a fine dining restaurant.

bouley restaurant nyc dessert 1

bouley restaurant nyc dessert 2

After lunch we jumped on the ferry to head back to our friend’s home in Jersey City and soaked in the fresh air and sea breeze along the way.

nyc ferry skyline

The next day we were back to Manhattan for a mini eating tour, which started at Donut Plant. Apparently there is a “Shake Shack vs. In-n-Out” type of rivalry between Donut Plant and Dough, with people having very strong opinions both ways. While we didn’t have a chance to try Dough, the donuts at Donut Plant were amazing. The texture was pillowy soft, and the flavors were great, with our favorites being creme brulee and peanut butter and jelly.

donut plant nyc creme brulee match pb&j

We were on a bit of a sugar bender, and headed over to the Theater District to Bibble & Sipp to try their famous cream puffs. We ordered the matcha green tea and earl grey cream flavors, with the edge going to early grey.

bibble and sip nyc earl grey match cream puffs

Afterwards we drove over to Brooklyn for dinner, and after we parked, had a chance to check out some of the cool street art as we walked to the restaurant.

brooklyn street art

Have I mentioned that I LOVE pizza? I’d heard that Roberta’s in Brooklyn had great pizza, and I was about to find out for myself.

robertas brooklyn front entrance

We ordered up a small feast, and even as a card-carrying carnivore, I’ll admit that the vegetable dishes here were surprisingly good. But I was mostly here for the pizza, and it did not disappoint. The Cheesus Christ pizza was my favorite.

robertas restaurant brooklyn cheesus christ pizza

And the bee-sting was pretty good too.

robertas restaurant brooklyn bee sting pizza

I slept like a baby that night, as all the eating that day put me in a donut and pizza-induced coma. We had time for one final meal the next day before it was time to head home, and that ended up being at Cosme for brunch.

I’m a huge fan of Mexican breakfast and brunch food, and we ended up ordering a few dishes to share family style, including my go-to choice, chilaquiles.

cosme restaurant nyc brunch chilaquiles

The duck enmoladas were great too.

cosme restaurant nyc brunch duck mole

And you can never go wrong with huevos rancheros.

cosme restaurant nyc brunch huevos rancheros

But the highlight came at the end with churros that were served with Mexican hot chocolate sauce.

cosme restaurant nyc brunch churros


  1. So glad to hear you enjoyed Bouley. We are spending labor day weekend in nyc and I was able to snag a lunch reservation. I was thinking of canceling since the hubby was complaining about having to lug a jacket around all day due to their dress code. But I guess he will just have to suck it up. ☺

    • Haha, it was definitely worth lugging the jacket around all day. You’ll have a great time, enjoy!

  2. Welcome back! I’ve been waiting for you to finish this report! Looks delish! We also thought about Boulay in July but went to Eleven Madison Park instead…

    • Glad to be back! How was EMP? I hear its amazing…

  3. It was top notch and quite the experience! Surprisingly, it is also relatively easy to get a reservation there (opentable 28 days in advance) so if you head back to NYC and you have the budget go for it!
    That said the 55$ lunch at Boulay has super value written all over it!

  4. Great review and choices of food places to check out in my city =). This is jetsetnom over on insta btw. Haha, that is funny re: your categorization of Dough and Doughnut Plant. I’m a die hard Dough fan, not so much Doughnut Plant. I’ve tried really hard to like Doughnut Plant, but their donuts are just too heavy/thick and never tastes fresh for some reason (not necessarily stale, but not that freshness taste if you know what I mean). Dough on the other hand, is like heaven for me. So light and airy and tastes pretty fresh when you bite into it. Speaking of doughnuts, have you tried the Dominique Ansel cronuts yet? That’s another one that is up for debate. I actually think Paris Baguette’s cronuts are better =X. Bibble & Sip is another great choice! It’s right by where I work so I go there often. I’m not sure if you’ve had Shake Shack, but it’s so so for me. (In & Out is much much much better. I wish we had one here!) I feel it’s over rated, maybe because it’s so readily available for me so I don’t see the appeal? Shake Shack’s mushroom burger (just the shroom) and their Chicken sandwich (although imo there are better chicken sandwich spots in the city) is much better than their burger imo. See if you can come back and try those next time. Keep up the food reviews! Would love to read about good eats in the SF area!


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