Manhattan Sideways: Two Sensational Culinary Experiences

Everyday we are discovering new restaurants and sampling sensational food on the side streets of Manhattan.  Two recent finds do not seem to be garnering the attention they deserve. These restaurants provide rare and wonderful culinary experiences. Read more about Mihoko’s 21 Grams on 22nd Street and Risotteria Melotti on 5th Street, make reservations, and enjoy two very different, but outstanding meals!

Mihoko’s 21 Grams


21 grams was an experience that took five of us into an uncharted culture and left us not only deliciously sated, but also feeling like a welcomed and valued friend. On our first venture inside, we were working – exploring the restaurant, taking photos and observing the chef in the kitchen. Our second visit was to participate in the entire dining experience. Words cannot possibly do justice to the absolutely incredible 8 course, Franco-Japonaise works of art we consumed. With each bite, we all went silent and then looked up at each other in amazement only to find the same looks of awe on all of our faces. From the fresh rolls served with brown butter to the hollowed eggshell filled with the most decadent chicken consomme imaginable resting on an aromatic bed of lavender salt…to the potato truffle croquette with a molten cheese center, probably one of the best bites of food I have ever eaten…to the tuna tartar “sandwich”…to the thoughtfully-crafted vegetarian dishes…to the outrageous cocktails including an iced sake intermezzo…and dessert that was over-the-top chocolate souffle…we were positively dazzled. This was a meal, served by expert waiters in tailcoats, the memory of which will stick with us as we continue indulging our way across the side streets. Read More…

Risotteria Melotti

5th 309 RisotteriaMelotti 12

Biking with my husband on a beautiful August day, I stopped short when I noticed something new and picturesque on 5th Street. It was three o’clock in the afternoon, but I had been holding out until I discovered the perfect place to grab a bite to eat, and I certainly landed in an ideal spot. The rustic charm indoors – with replicas of the farm equipment used in Italy hanging from the ceiling – captured our hearts immediately, but it was the food – the outstanding rice dishes – that solidified Risotteria Melotti indefinitely on my list of top restaurants to recommend. Being one of the only tables filled at this odd hour allowed us to chat casually with the staff throughout our meal where we not only learned the history of the restaurant, but we also got well educated in the world of rice. Back in 1986, a couple began producing rice on one acre of land in Verona, Italy. Almost three decades later, together with their three sons, Rosetta and Giuseppe now farm 544 acres of land, all devoted to growing award-winning rice that is sold the world over. Read More…

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