I originally checked out Vapiano Restaurant because my brother told me about it. My first thought when I walked in the door and they handed me a card (what they call a chip card) was "college". You use the card to order all of your food, drinks, dessert, etc. That's exactly whatI did in my college cafeteria years, swipe everything I wanted. But, I was surprised at my overall experience. The food was amazing and I absolutely loved watching my food be cooked right in front of me. Awesome! I've been there 4 times within the last 4 months, so I guess you can say I'm a fan. I put together 2 list that I hope are helpful when you have your first Vapiano experience. Things to Do: 1. Find a table before ordering - the last thing you want to do is walk around with your food and no table to sit at. 2. Make your menu selection before you're in front of the chef/cook - you don't want to be the one that holds up the line behind you. 3. Ask the chef to add your favorites to the dish - a little garlic, red pepper or fresh pepper won't hurt. 4. Try different pasta - the pasta is made fresh and they have a great variety. You won't be disappointed. Don't: 1. Don't leave your table unattended - it's important to clam your territory, especially on a Friday or Saturday night. This restaurant gets crowded at night, so your group better leave a scarf, book or something to claim your table before everyone gets up to place their orders. 2. Don't take all of your friend's cards to the bar to order drinks - by the time you get to the bar you never remember which card belongs to each friend. The cards are identical. 3. Don't leave your food behind if you're full - they have the cutest to-go-dishes and they are perfect to re-use. Just ask the wait staff walking around for a to-go-box/dish. The only reason they don't get a perfect score from me is because I hate waiting in line and on Friday and Saturday nights you will wait just a bit. Other than that it's the perfect spot for girls night out or a date. Have fun and enjoy the food. It's Pasta Time at Vapiano's! Check out my sneak peak Video into my Vapiano experience: http://youtu.be/SBiG5g2TnXM
I originally checked out Vapiano because I heard about it from my brother. My first thought when I walked in the door and I was handed a card (what they call a chip card) was &quot;college&quot;. You use the card to order all of your food, drinks, dessert, etc. That's exactly what I did in my college cafeteria years, swipe everything I wanted. But, I was surprised at my overall experience. The food was amazing and I absolutely loved watching my food be cooked right in front of me. Awesome! I've been there 4 times already within the last 4 months, so I guess you can say I'm a fan. I put together 2 list that I hope are helpful when you have your first Vapiano experience. Things to Do: 1. Find a table before ordering - the last thing you want to do is walk around with your food and no table to sit at 2. Make your menu selection before you're in front of the chef - you don't want to be the one that holds up the line behind you 3. Ask the chef to add your favorites to the dish - a little garlic, red pepper, and fresh pepper won't hurt 4. Try different pasta - the pasta is made fresh so you won't be disappointed Don't: 1. Don't leave your table unattended - its important to claim your territory, especially on a Friday or Saturday night. This restaurant gets crowed at night, so your group better leave a scarf, book or something to claim your table before everyone gets up to place their orders. 2. Don't take all of your friend's cards to the bar to order drinks - by the time you get to the bar you never remember which card belongs to which friend. The cards are identical. 3. Don't leave all your food if you're full - they have the cutest to go dishes and they are perfect to reuse. Just ask the wait staff walking around for a to go box/dish. The only reason they don't get a perfect score from me is because I hate waiting in line and on a Friday or Saturday, you will have to wait just a bit. Other than that it's the perfect spot for girls night out or a date. Have fun and enjoy the food. It's Pasta Time at Vapiano's! Check out my sneek peak Video into my vapiano expereince: http://youtu.be/SBiG5g2TnXM
Fittingly, the decor inside Cloister matches what you would expect to see at a church. The pleasantly sacrilegious ambiance for smoking hookah and drinking fine wine adds to your inebriating experience. Cloister is a term ingrained in the Catholic church, if you're curious regarding it's meaning, check out Wikipedia. I'm here to preach, not to teach. The pride and joy of CC though is the outdoor garden. When the weather is warm and the vineyard has grape leaves draping over slivers of sunlight, you forget that you're still in New York. The ambiance is amazing and the patrons can be very pleasant, even striking up a conversation with your table. The pricing is often ridiculous, and sometimes when our lovely waitress brings us "shots on the house" I swear we've had them show up on our bill. This adds to the charm albeit stings the first two times you see the bill. It's very European how they handle their business, complete with real Russian waitresses! So yea, Catholic stain glass, Mediterranean garden, New American cuisine, Turkish Hookah and Russian staff. It's not ideal, in fact it's all over the place in terms of brand identity. Given that I'm a regular, they treat me a little better than a first timer (My real rating for this spot would be a 4 by the way, but I want to counterbalance the bad ratings) On a wintery night, I came here with a friend, we were both sick and we asked them to make us honey mulled wine, they did it. They charged us whatever they wanted because it's not a standard menu item, but the fact remains, they do care about their regulars. Like many places in NY, you have to know when to come and when to avoid this spot. Some tips if you want to have a good time: - Come during warmer weather and sit in the garden. - Start drinking here, continue at your club/lounge. Not the other way around. - Order a pitcher (or 2) of Sangria rather than drinks for groups smaller than 4 - Order Hookah with a mix, always keep one part leafy (Mint, Jasmine) with one part smooth (Vanilla, Apple, Coffee). - Practice self control when ordering shots. If you follow these steps, you'll have a good time
Let me start by saying I am in love with Casa Nonna. It definitely sits at the top of my Fav Italian Restaurants. I've enjoyed the cuisine of Casa Nonna twice, already. The first time I was introduced to this hidden midtown jewel was by a friend, who wanted to meet for lunch. She was very familiar with the restaurant, so she ordered us a few dishes to share. The food was absolutely amazing. I have to back up and talk about the decor of this place. It's simply gorgeous, with the most amazing pizza bar. It's probably the best I've seen. And they have an open kitchen. Nice! The dark wood, the seating and the lighting make the experience very comfortable and almost made me not want to leave. The customer service was pefect and the staff are true professionals. They add to the entire experience, which I wrap up with the word, "Class". Okay, now back to the food. Their meatballs are the best I've ever had, which I believe are made with veal instead of beef. They just melt in your mouth. I also really enjoyed the Tortelloni, which they call "Little Hats". The pasta is made fresh and it was just perfect. There are so many more dishes that I enjoyed, like the bruschetta with the eggplant, but you'll never fully understand how amazing the food truly is unless you try it yourself. Oh, and how could I forget that they have a great wine list. When I was at the bar the bartender suggested a Pinot Noir, which I was very happy with. Overall, I loved the the entire Casa Nonna experience. I can't wait for my parents to visit me, so we can have a family dinner there.
I have been coming here for an eternity, at first mainly for the mojitos, but once they changed their chef, I started coming back for lunch and mojitos. I don't know what magician pours the drinks, but you always leave with a "buzz". The Cloister cafe is the best during the warmer months, so you can enjoy many cocktails, under the grapevines and lush foliage, with hookah and friends. The last time I went, was with a friend, on a rainy day, to celebrate her graduation from Parson's. We were seated "inside-outside" area, which is a tented area, but still not deprived of many trees and plants. We ordered mojitos, a brie quesadellia appetizer, and two salads: the duck and the salmon, I'm not a big salad person, but I like the way they make theirs. Big portions of duck and salmon, well seasoned, fresh and filling. I love their fried potatoes too, with sea salt, time and pepper. To end our meal we ordered a hookah and dessert, and oddly enough it ended up being on a bit over 40$ a person(with out tip), which I think is beyond reasonable for the location, quality of food, and magical cocktails. I would recommend this place 100% for a first date, since they never rush you or take forever to bring your food. I would also recommend this place for sitting alone on a sunny afternoon, with friends at night, or whenever. It's a winner. It got a perfect rating from me, because it deserves it. You get the exact bang for your buck!
*This review is for my first hookah experience in NYC only, not for the restaurant portion of this place.Oh hookah, how I missed you so! I haven't been to a hookah lounge in so long, but am glad to have found Cloister Cafe! Actually, my friend & I were looking for this sake place when we stumbled upon this place. Decided to check it out since it was actually affordable ($20 per pipe plus one drink minimum per person). The Ukrainian bouncer wasn't all that intimidating, I've seen worse, but I did notice he didn't allow guys in easily (he told a random guy to call out his friend to meet him at the entrance instead). My friend and I, on the other hand, walked in just fine. The ambiance of this place is awesome; the outdoor garden is covered by trees and grapevines above you, and the music is loud enough to enjoy but still able to hear the other person across the table. Luckily the weather was perfect, it would've sucked if it rained. We got the rose & mint hookah (delicious!) and each got an iced tea (lemon was included, without us asking.. even better!) We must've spent about three hours here, and the server never pressured us to leave. I'm definitely coming back here!
I love this place and I love the staff and I don't say that lightly. This is a family owned/run restaurant which extends that familiarity and acceptance to its customers. I come once a week religiously and have the most amazing dinner and wine. The first time I came here I was flirted with shamelessly and looked after and attended to like a famous person and that was with Judge Judy sitting two tables down....that hasn't changed. Judge Judy takes turns with David Mamet and the cast of Saturday NIght Live and a few other famous faces I've give a second glance too, but they still treat everyone with the same jovial smiles, twinkles in the eyes and willingness to bend over backwards and make your experiences unforgettable I come every week and sometimes more often if I'm in the city. I enjoy eating this food. Muwa! It's amazing! Some of my favorites: Jewish style artichokes The spinach gnocchi Chicken Paillard (my favorite) with a side of Veggies (yum yum!) The chocolate Mousse! - with strawberries....
Went for dinner with my boyfriend, food was pretty good but I feel over priced, but then again the place is in Midtown...wait staff was nice, had Nick as our waitor, very attentive. The hostess was gorgeous, nice & helpful even saw her clean up, set up a few tables and serve a few drinks for other tables, dont see that very often, very informative as well, she recommended the chicken marsala w/ veg & the lasgna which we thought was good. The owner Jay came out to talk to us, nice guy but didn't stop talking kind of wanted to enjoy my food instead of listen to him for half my meal. My boyfriend and I didn't like the fact that the wait staff was constantly snickering and making rude comments about customers in Albanian, we didn't say anything that we understood or that I was Albanian, but they should definitely limit that just incase other people like us come that do understand, I'm sure it makes other customers who don't understand uncomfortable too, otherwise no other complaints
Oh, Cloister. I discovered this place a few years ago with some friends and found the slightly ratchet decorations, the shady and sometimes offensive bouncer, and the two-toilets-in-one-bathroom set-up all really endearing. (I have my theories about those toilets btw.) Hookah is 20$/4ppl and you have to get a drink each. If you're like my friends and stay for 86 hours every time and want your coal changed, you'll probably end up ordering more drinks to avoid the side-eying from the servers. Chocolate mint is the BEST hookah flavor. The hookah here is pretty good; food is also good and drinks depend on who's making them that night. I come mainly for the hookah and the atmosphere (generally popping on thurs, fri and sat. Sometimes there's a line outside...which is a little ridic considering this aint no club but its a popular place. Mainly college kids.) go! smoke! pee with a partner! do other things! (Or don't. please don't.)
probably the most amazing environment you will find in nyc, the most beautiful garden setting perfect for a date or just friends coming to hang out and on top of that they have hookah making it that much better... if you go make sure you try to get Marc for your server, he is absolutely the best server there and he will take care of your every need also make sure you say hello and meet the manager Jerry he is the man and will take care of your future visits.. we've started making this an every night place to start the night if we're getting crazy or to end the night if it's a relaxing night also... at first we didn't know but the food is unbelievable and completely reasonably priced everything we've had is just insane and leaves you craving for another bite for weeks! if you're going to go anywhere for hookah you must go here, other places are smokey and gross but with this beautiful outdoor garden you just can't beat it