Guy's Best of New York

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Browse photos of Guy's favorite Big Apple eats from Triple D.

Fresh Pappardelle & Meat Ragu — John's of 12th Street

For over 100 years, John's of 12th Street has been serving up real deal, authentic Italian food in New York City's East Village. They're known for their house-made, fresh-cut pasta, but it's their Tuscan ragu meat sauce that kept Guy going back for more. Chuck and pork butt are cooked down for over five hours in tomato sauce, house-made vegetable stock and marsala wine before being tossed with their famous pappardelle and served with a sprinkling of basil. 

Photo By: Winnie Jeng

Slow-Roasted Goat Neck — Ducks Eatery

After being marinated for 24 hours in a mixture of fish sauce, soy sauce and over 21 different dry spices, the goat neck from Ducks Eatery is smoked over oak and hickory wood for seven hours and braised in its marinade for another five hours before being seared in a cast iron pan in bacon and pickled pastrami fat. Served over rice and dusted with cilantro, Guy says it's one of "the top three best goat dishes" he's ever had.

Crispy Crepe — Bun-ker Vietnamese

Don't let the name fool you. This isn't your typical French crepe. Sea salt and turmeric spice up the batter that's mixed with smoked bacon, eggs and shrimp and fried to a crisp, giving Bun-ker's crepe a "wicked good" melt-in-your-mouth finish. 

"Down By Law" Chicken Sandwich — Queens Comfort

Named after owner Donnie D'Alessio's favorite movie, Queens Comfort's most famous chicken sandwich is a savory combination of different cooking techniques and flavors. Frist, the chicken is smoked for two hours, then braised in a sweet and spicy marinade. Then, it's sliced, topped with house-made bacon jam and a slice of cheddar cheese and served with a homemade chipotle aioli and sliced avocado. Guy says it's, "off the chain."

Chicken & Waffles — Pies 'n' Thighs

Every inch of Pies 'n' Thighs' famous chicken is coated in paprika, cayenne and black pepper before it's brined in sugar and salt for 24 hours. Then it's covered in all-purpose flour, deep-fried and served on top of freshly made buckwheat waffles, and topped with cinnamon butter and blueberry compote. Guy says it's "the most savory combination of chicken and waffles" he's ever had.   

Sparrow Veggie Burger — The Sparrow Tavern

It's dive bar aesthetic might not scream four-star cuisine, but The Sparrow Tavern has a knack for turning out fresh and creative recipes. Their veggie burger is made of shredded carrots, zucchini, corn and peas, and it's held together with barley, mashed potatoes, panko bread crumbs and brown rice. The six-ounce patties are baked, then seared and served with pita bread, herbed fries and a side of maple-cayenne-mustard mayo. 

Brooklyn Cuban Sandwich — Sidecar

The secret to the dynamite flavor of Sidecar's Cuban sandwich is the array of spices and flavors that are soaked into the meat. Cumin, mixed mustard seed, black peppercorn and dark brown sugar are just a few of the ingredients that make up the pork butt's dry rub. Then, it's submerged in a wet marinade of cilantro, garlic, beer and citrus zest and soaks up all that flavor for 48 hours. The ham is marinated in a mixture of Dijon mustard, honey, brown sugar and beer for over six hours before being stacked with the pork butt, pickles and Swiss cheese between two pieces of toasted bread.

Neapolitan Pizza — Don Antonio

When it comes to real deal, old-school Neapolitan pizza, the magic starts in the crust. At Don Antonio, pizza chef Roberto Caporuscio doesn't rely on measuring cups or specific recipes. Everything is done by hand and measured by feel. After the dough is pressed out into a circle and the desired toppings are added, the next, and arguably most important, step is the oven. At Don Antonio, they use a stone, wood-fired oven with a small mouth and a low dome which cooks the pizza in just about a minute. Guy says he "can feel the magic" in the kitchen.

Tacos al Pastor — Tortillaria Nixtamal

Thinly sliced pork butt is marinated overnight in a house-made adobo sauce and covered in slices of juicy pineapple before being cooked on a vertical rotisserie until the edges start to char. The meat is then sliced and served with pineapple, cilantro and Tortilleria Nixtamal's freshly made tortillas.

Skillet Apple Waffle — Jimmy's Diner

Waffles for breakfast are nothing new, but it's the topping at Jimmy's Diner that's reinventing this morning classic. Pancetta, apples and brown sugar are reduced and mixed with maple syrup, nutmeg, cinnamon and lemon zest. The sweet and savory mixture is layered on top of a buttermilk, vanilla waffle and sprinkled with powdered sugar. Guy says it's "a waffle that eats like a meal." 

Stuffed Cabbage — Ben's Best Deli

This staple at Ben's Best Deli is a hefty portion of ground chuck that's seasoned with garlic powder, cumin, ketchup and pepper. The stuffed roll is covered in a sweet and sour raisin sauce (raisins, lemon juice, tomato puree, cranberry sauce, cinnamon), cooked for about an hour and served with another helping of the sweet and sour sauce. 

Brown Sugar Beef Short Ribs — The Smoke Joint

The beef short ribs at The Smoke Joint are covered in a dry rub of cayenne pepper, brown sugar and salt before being smoked with hickory for up to 12 hours. Then they're brushed with a brown sugar, cayenne barbecue sauce and grilled to caramelize the sauce. After another thick layer of sauce, they're ready to eat. Guy calls it "one of the best barbecue things I've ever had."

Steak Pizzaiola — Defonte's Sandwich Shop

When it comes to this Italian sandwich, it's all about the gravy – or tomato sauce to the rest of us. The "gravy gone wild" at Defonte's is a tomato sauce with garlic powder, bay leaf, basil and a thick hunk of butter. Added to that are slices of pounded chuck meat that'll simmer in the gravy for about an hour, making it nice and tender. Once the meat is ready, it's piled on white bread, sprinkled with grated cheese and topped with slices of fresh, house-made mozzarella. Then, a quick bake in the oven melts all the flavors together. 

The Brindle Burger — The Brindle Room

What's so special about this seemingly basic burger? It's all about the fat. The Brindle Room's eponymous burger is made with a mixture of prime rib meat and beef chuck, giving it a fat percentage of about 30 percent, up from the typical 20 percent. The six ounce patties are seasoned with salt and pepper, seared in a cast iron skillet, smothered in American cheese and caramelized onions and served on a toasted bun. "It really is a dynamite burger," Guy says.

Low-Country Shrimp and Grits — The Redhead

The stone-ground grits from The Redhead are thickened with milk, butter and a dollop of mascarpone cheese and seasoned simply with salt and pepper. Over the grits is a serving of made-to-order shrimp and andouille sausage cooked in shrimp stock with celery, onions, bell peppers, garlic, thyme and parsley. 

Guy Takes DDD to Havana

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Guy and his Triple D crew head to the land of Mojitos, cigars and classic cars to get a taste of Cuban cuisine.

Fresh, Never Frozen

Guy and server Joan Blanco look on as Chef Alex Luco of El Figaro shells fresh lobster to make the joint’s signature Lobster in Coffee Sauce.

Photo By: Citizen Pictures

Lobster in Coffee Sauce — El Figaro

As the story goes, this dish was created when Gilberto Smith Duquesne, one of the most-important chefs in Cuban history, accidentally spilled espresso in the lobster he was preparing for French President Francois Mitterrand. 

Photo By: Citizen Pictures

Family Time

Guy’s wife, Lori, and his parents gave the signature El Figaro dishes a try. "I’ve never had anything like this," Penny, Guy's mom, said of the lobster. "I love coffee, I love lobster, but who ever thought of putting them together?"

Photo By: Citizen Pictures

Camagueyana-Style Pork Loin — El Figaro

Named for the Camaguey province, this pork loin is made with sauteed peppers and onions in a light sauce. Guy called this simple dish absolutely "dynamite."

Photo By: Citizen Pictures

Miami Beach or El Malecón?

The restaurant Nazdarovie sits on El Malecón, a scenic 5-mile stretch of highway along the coast of Havana. Guy thought it looked a little like Ocean Drive: "So easy to get those two mixed up, being that they're only, like, 90 miles away," he joked.

Photo By: Citizen Pictures

Back in the USSR

Guy watches as Chef Irina Butorina of Nazdarovie mixes the dough to make Russian pelmeni, a filled pasta much like ravioli.

Photo By: Citizen Pictures

Pelmeni, Russian-Style Ravioli — Nazdarovie 

Just like they’re made in Russia, these pelmeni are stuffed with meat, then topped with sour cream and fresh herbs.

Photo By: Citizen Pictures

Chicken Kiev — Nazdarovie 

A log of aromatized butter is frozen, then wrapped with a breaded chicken cutlet, which is then fried. Freezing the butter keeps it from melting during the prep process.

Photo By: Citizen Pictures

Fast Food, Cuban Style 

Guy watches as Chef Ugo Chigon prepares the signature stuffed plantains from Fonda Paladar la Paila, a Cuban joint known for its quick service.  

Photo By: Citizen Pictures

Stuffed, Fried Plantains — Restaurante Fonda Paladar la Paila

These crunchy tostones are shaped like cups, deep-fried, then stuffed with lamb that’s been marinated in a housemade sauce. 

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Barbecue Pork Ribs — Restaurante Fonda Paladar la Paila

The sauce on these Cuban-style ribs is made with sour orange for a fresh island feel.  

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Feeling Salty 

Chef and owner Ivan Rodriguez and server Lilien Rodriguez tell Guy about the 21-day process behind salting and curing the lamb ribs for one of their dishes at Al Carbon. 

Salted and Pulled Lamb — Al Carbon

The dried lamb ribs are rehydrated before they're shredded and sauteed with onions, peppers and sour orange. “This is the best thing I’ve had since I’ve been here,” Guy says of the dish. 

Fish of the Day — Al Carbon

Everything at this restaurant is sourced locally and super-fresh, including this snapper that was caught the night before. After the whole fish is grilled, it's topped with a unique house chimichurri sauce made with balsamic vinegar.

Take Me to Church

In 2013 chef and owner Diego Hernandez turned his mother’s house into a holy house of food, La Catedral. Here, Guy helps Hernandez marinate goat meat for stew.

Goat Stew — La Catedral

The goat meat in this stew soaks for 12 hours in an aromatic red wine marinade before it is cooked. The stew is then served with malanga, a boiled root similar to yucca.

Fried Rice — La Catedral

While not a traditional Cuban dish, this Cuban take on a Chinese favorite is made with chicken, pork, shrimp, ham and eggs. 

Chicken and Cigars

Guy watches as Chef Juvenal Gonzales makes the house chicken dish at Casa Abel, a one-stop shop for dynamite Cuban food and Cuban cigars.

Beer-Can Chicken in a Rum Marinade — Casa Abel

This one-of-a-kind house dish is made with three kinds of alcohol: wine, rum and beer.

Marinated Deep-Fried Pork — Casa Abel

The pork meat in this traditional Cuban dish is cooked on low heat so it remains incredibly tender. The carnitas are served alongside fufu, a mashed plantain dish seasoned with lime. 

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Photo By: Citizen Pictures