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Archive for the ‘Restaurants’ Category

I know Koreatown has been a favorite of mine, but how can it not be!? Table grilled meat, 24 hour spas, and top notch karaoke. We’re talking private room, swank bar, space age bathrooms that sometimes confuddle … but in a good way. Maru has it all.

Tucked in a high floor of a Koreatown multiplex,  the karaoke hot spot is about as cool as it comes to belt out some Journey or Bon Jovi. Grab a private room for a guarantee of $250 with vodka bottles and mixers and smash in about 20 friends. Or pay $60 per hour and pay for drinks as they come. Are there cheaper karaoke places? Yep. Are they so accommodating and fab? Nope. Just prearrange what you want and make your bar limit clear, and you are guaranteed a good time. Depending on your friends voices (or lack there of).

Maru is located at 11 W 32nd St (between 5th Ave & Broadway). Call for reservations at (212) 273-3413.

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Eggs, sausage and cheese … oh my! Those tasty morsels, snuggled up with pepper, potatoes, onions and a “special sauce” in a flour tortilla, make up the 610-calorie behemoth that is the McSkillet, McDonald’s latest contribution to the clogging of America’s arteries. Normally $2.50 in Manhattan, get a free McSkillet with medium or large drink purchase – OJ counts! – tomorrow (Feb. 28) and Friday (Feb.29) during breakfast hours (most McD’s serve breakfast until 11AM).

The company is advertising the deal as a special celebration of “Leap Day.” Probably a good thing because it’ll take your cholesterol four more years to return to normal levels.

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One rainy Valentine’s Day, my boyfriend and I thought of no better way to celebrate our undying love than with a big plate of tongue sizzling in its own juices right at our table.

Korean BBQ, for the uninitiated, is as much about the interactivity as the meal. Your order usually consists of raw meat and/or vegetables, which cooked tablesideor tabletop upon portable or built in burners. Depending on the restaurant, you may even cook your own meat.

So, we stumbled through puddles and wove our umbrella in and out of a number of restaurants that were practically empty. How could this be in such a bustling area? Did everyone opt for the “prix fixe’d with love” options at more amorous culinary destinations?

Just as we were turning our galoshes home, we peered into the foggy windows of a seemingly innocuous joint and knew it was what we were looking for. Not only was it packed, but it was packed with Koreans. Now, say what you will about making assumptions based on race, but the one safe stereotype to hold is that if people of the same ethnicity as the restaurant seem to dominate the crowd there (and you don’t happen to the in the same country as said ethnicity), you’ve got a winner.

Open 24 hours – as most Korean BBQ restaurants – Kunjip offers authentic Korean food at prices lower than many of the abundant competitors within arm’s length. While the line may stretch beyond the front door, the staff swiftly seats customers so the wait is never very long. Once seated, a huge spread of tasting plates will be flung on your table. While the composition of such changes, staples include kim chee and what my boyfriend and I call “the bubbling egg dish” – a sort of egg casserole.

A recommended dinner for two includes the Goong Joong Dduk Boki, tubular rice cakes simmered in a spicy red sauce. A small is sufficient for two people and you may ask for a less spicy version, if necessary. For the main course, a plate of the succulent Gal Bi Gui, marinated short ribs, is sweet saliva salvation with juices bursting with the tang of soy and magic. The vegetables and noodles of the Yetnalsik Bul Goki, tender prime rib-eye marinated in soy, balance out the meat-heavy meal. The bill should come to around $70, unless you add some OB beer, which is definitely recommended to calm the flames that inevitably settle on your tongue after a few tubes of Dduk. Other dishes of note are the tongue and the shrimp. Check out the options here.

A final word of warning: Every fiber of your clothes will suck in the simmering meat smells as fast as you’ll shovel in your meal.

On Valentine’s Day or any day at Kunjip, nothing spell love like a plate of raw meat.

9W 32nd St. New York, NY 10001 (Between Broadway & 5th Ave.), 212-216-9487

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