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A Week of Live Music and Restaurant Meals

When it’s as hot as it’s been the past few weeks, restaurants meals and takeout replace home cooked. Usually, it’s take out but last week, I ended up with several more restaurant meals than take out as we celebrated a promotion, friends visiting and a friend  leaving New York City temporarily.

The first part of the week found us at Birdland, a jazz club in midtown. My friend, Lorraine, a singer was visiting and wanted to listen to live jazz. There are several locations to listen to jazz in New York City but Birdland was close to where she was staying. We were chatting so much, I forgot to take photos of the meal when it arrived, and photography was not allowed when the Loston Harris Quartet, with special guest singer, Monica Behan, took the stage.

Later in the week, we celebrated our friend’s Judith’s promotion with a meal at Aba, a Turkish restaurant on Manhattan’s west side. I chose the Doner Kebab. I had read about doner kebabs in a post that Jan at Budget Travel Talk had written a while back. When I saw it on the menu, there was no question what I’d have for my main course.

A Week of Live Music and Restaurant Meals

Doner Kebab, Aba Turkish Restaurant

If you’ve had gyros, you know exactly what doner kebab are and most importantly, how it tastes. Very flavorful, succulent and plain delicious. I ate every slice.

Another friend is due to leave shortly on a fellowship in southern Africa. When she requested Jamaican food, I mentioned a few of my favorite restaurants. I don’t remember exactly how we decided on Ripe Restaurant in Mount Vernon but early Saturday afternoon, we were sitting in their “backyard” – Ripe is a small restaurant with maybe 15 tables so the backyard, which is open during the summer, extends the space – sipping a glass of their rum punch.

I had been salivating over two of my favorite appetizers at Ripe – the Strawberry Hill Codfish Spring Rolls and Cuban Plantain Boat – and undecided which I should order. Honestly, I would have ordered both but I decided on the spring rolls. Not your typical spring rolls, these are bullets stuffed with codfish and served with a vidalia onion mustard sauce.

A Week of Live Music and Restaurant Meals

Strawberry Hill Codfish Spring Rolls, Ripe Restuarant

I always have a difficult time deciding on what to order when I go to Ripe because I like just about everything on their menu. I was tempted to order the curried shrimp but I decided on the Jamaican Beachside Style Fried Fish. Ripe’s fried fish is so crispy, there’s nothing left on the plate when I’m finished. And yes, they leave the head on. I know, some people are squeamish about that but I love a crispy fried fish head.

A Week of Live Music and Restaurant Meals

Jamaican Beachside Style Fried Fish, Ripe Restaurant

My friend chose the “Big Ass” Jerk Rib Eye Steak – yup, that’s exactly what it’s called – and she loved it!

A Week of Live Music and Restaurant Meals

Big Ass Jerk Rib Eye Steak, Ripe Restaurant

We ended the evening in Harlem listening to the New York Flamenco Jazz Project at Silvana.

A Week of Live Music and Restaurant Meals

New York Flamenco Jazz Project at Silvana

What’s your go-to restaurant / food when you have out of town guests?

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  1. I am glad you got to try some Doner Kebab. Loved your selection of other meals, especially the codfish spring rolls and the Big Ass Jerk Rib Eye. Thanks for the link. 🙂
    jan recently posted..Tuesday in Townsville on the Goat TrackMy Profile

  2. Oh those codfish spring rolls look good! I’m one of those “can’t eat the fish with the head on” people but that dish still sounds tasty!
    Lisa Goodmurphy recently posted..Four European Cities Kids Will Love on Travel Underwriters Insurance BlogMy Profile

  3. Looks delicious, Maicia 🙂
    Muza-chan recently posted..Old Japanese stories, Kitsune and Hoshi no tamaMy Profile

  4. H Marcia, that sounds like a fun and delicious week. The seafood offerings at Ripe looks really good. I don’t think I ever have a spring roll with fish. We’ve also been busy entertaining out of town friends the last few weeks. We don’t really have a go-to restaurant; we ask for the guests’s preference. One friend and family preferred a restaurant with a skyline view so we took them to Gaonnuri. One wanted to go to Meatpacking with good people watching, we took them to Standard Grill. One wanted pizza and we headed to Lombardi’s. If they say it’s up to us, then we go to wherever we feel like going at that time.
    Marisol recently posted..Beautiful, Romantic Bora BoraMy Profile

  5. It’s really more fun eating in a restaurant with a live music. The Strawberry Hill Codfish Spring Rolls looks delicious. Thanks for sharing this post. I had fun reading this post. Definitely share this to my friends who love eating at the restaurant with live music.
    Alexis recently posted..10 Money Making OpportunitiesMy Profile

  6. Jazz and delicious food … you just reminded me of the reason why I love New York so much.
    Freya recently posted..EBC Trek Day 3: Monjo to Namche BazaarMy Profile

  7. Looking forward to reading more. Great blog post.Truly looking forward to find out more.

  8. I’ll be printing this off for use on my next trip to NYC, Marcia. You had me at vidalia onion mustard sauce on codfish spring rolls–mmm!
    Lesley Peterson recently posted..Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater to get UNESCO world heritage site status?My Profile

  9. That’s a pretty good selection, Marisol. I’ll have to try these before the summer ends. I especially like the idea of a skyline view.

  10. It was very delicious, Lesley. Let me know if you’d like some company.

  11. Oh yea those codfish spg moves look good! I’m one of those “can’t eat the species of fish while using head on” men and women but in which bowl nevertheless sounds yummy!

  12. With Flamenco Jazz music!!!!! In Spain a lot of people are discovering classic flamenco through the Flamenco Fussion.
    Nice post

  13. Claudia

    So tasty! That seems to be impressive!
    Claudia recently posted..Braising Barbecue GrillMy Profile