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About

Eating my way through the Big Apple and around the world.

Always in favor of extraordinary flavor versus saving a few calories, I’m constantly seeking the best restaurants, recipes, and random little food finds. This blog chronicles my discoveries, most of which are located in New York City, the foodie heaven I am fortunate to call home.

I am an editor at Zagat, but all opinions on this blog are mine and have nothing to do with my employer.

I take my photos with a point-and-shoot Canon PowerShot SD850. Which goes to show that if you're passionate about photography but can't afford fancy camera equipment, you can still take quality photos.

Follow me on Twitter:
@eatyourchow

Need restaurant recommendations or recipe advice?
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Or email me at:
mollymoker[at]gmail[dot]com

My non-food blog:
the girl does what she wants to do

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New York Times Dining

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Taylor Takes a Taste

What Katie Ate

20 March 2013
When I asked my server her preference between two ramens, she said they were as different as salad and butter. 
You know I ordered butter. 
Slurping Turtle, Chicago

When I asked my server her preference between two ramens, she said they were as different as salad and butter. 

You know I ordered butter. 

Slurping Turtle, Chicago

24 January 2013

I would die to attend this event in Chicago: private, after-hours feast at Publican Quality Meats with legendary chef Paul Kahan. Tickets go off sale tomorrow, so buy now

4 January 2013

We didn’t forget about you, Chitown foodies! A few tickets are still available for next Tuesday’s event with Top Chef Masters winner Tony Mantuano, which includes a private cooking demo and a specially-curated dinner with wine pairings at his Michigan Avenue restaurant, Spiaggia. Such an incredible experience! 

Check out these other awesome events happening soon in New York and Chicago.

27 June 2012
My one true happiness: goods from The Doughnut Vault.
Until next time, dear friends. 

My one true happiness: goods from The Doughnut Vault.

Until next time, dear friends. 

25 June 2012
"I’m not sharing any of it!" 
My brother-in-law’s initial reaction after laying eyes on his buffalo mac and cheese. He’s going to fit in this family just fine.
Mystic Celt, Chicago 

"I’m not sharing any of it!" 

My brother-in-law’s initial reaction after laying eyes on his buffalo mac and cheese. He’s going to fit in this family just fine.

Mystic Celt, Chicago 

13 January 2012
Who says you can’t eat hangover food before you start drinking? 
Bull & Bear, Chicago, New Year’s Eve day

Who says you can’t eat hangover food before you start drinking? 

Bull & Bear, Chicago, New Year’s Eve day

Tags: food Chicago soup
4 August 2011

The Doughnut Vault, Chicago

There is probably just one thing in the whole world that would cause me to stand in line at 8 am in the rain, and that is DONUTS! Chubby, sticky, lick-your-fingers-clean little morsels from heaven (as I otherwise call them).

If you’re in Chicago, there’s just one place to get yer donut fix—The Doughnut Vault in River North. This months-old tiny closet of a shop (literally, it used to be a bank vault) sells homemade donuts Tuesday-Saturday until they’re gone, which can happen in just two to three hours. Hence why one must be in line before the vault opens at 8:30 am (9:30 Saturdays).

Much to my delight, I woke up to rain. I say delight because I was running a teensy bit behind schedule (do not cross me in the mornings before I’ve had my first donut), and I was worried I might not make it through the line before my sister picked me up at 9 am sharp for our four hour road trip. Let me tell you, if you’re not bringing a box of donuts with you on a four hour road trip, you’re doing it wrong.

I decided to power walk/jog the several blocks (also in hopes of burning off the previous day’s Chick-fil-A and Girl and the Goat). I kid you not, when I got to Grand Street (three blocks from the Vault) I could smell the precious things. Like a horse with a carrot dangling in front of him, I picked up my pace.

As fate would have it, there were only 15 patrons in front of me when I arrived 15 minutes before showtime. Fifteen minutes after the vault opened (and $15 later—steep, I know), I was the proud owner of one of each flavor (buttermilk old fashioned cake donut, gingerbread stack, and chocolate, vanilla, and chestnut glazed). Things to remember before you pass out in a chubby donut haze: it’s cash only, and you can only buy a dozen per person (but if the customer in front of you is just getting a few, they can give you the rest of their allotment).

These puppies were worth every lost minute of sleep and awkward jogging-in-civilian-clothes step. Hands down, my favorite was the old fashioned cake donut, and that’s crazy, because I am always, always, ALWAYS a glazed girl. What can you do, it was unlike any donut I had ever tasted. It wasn’t dry and heavy; it actually melted in my mouth. I accidentally polished off the whole thing before we arrived in Milwaukee (JK, it wasn’t an accident. I didn’t want to share that baby with anyone). Vanilla glazed was my strong runner-up.

Do whatever you have to do to get there—awkward run/gallop and everything. And if we’re ever standing in line together, and you’re not ordering a dozen, please consider allocating your excess little morsels from heaven to me.

3 August 2011

The hottest new restaurant in Chicago? I am not even kidding when I say it’s Chick-fil-A. Minutes after my sister picked me up at the airport she was all up in my face, asking if I’ve ever been. “People are lined up around the block sometimes!” she exclaimed. For the rest of my vacation, I was ambushed by Chitowners asking me if I had been to “the Chick” yet. (No one called it that. Just me. Right now. On this little blog.)

I felt it was my duty to experience this phenomenon—all in the name of Eat Your Chow! On my last day in Chi, after an especially brutal Equinox spin class, I skipped weight lifting and said, “Screw it! I’m going to ‘the Chick!’” (Okay, now I said it twice.)

First off, this place is fancy. Thank god I showered first! It is sparkling clean! It has flat screen TVs! It has flower vases on the tables! It has a little cleaning crew in headsets buzzing around wiping up ketchup blobs as if it’s toxic waste! (Wait a minute…) And the place was packed! At 3 pm on a Wednesday, I had to wait in a medium-length line, and every single table was full!

I sauntered up to the counter and told the little lady it was my first time at Chick-fil-A. “What should I get?” She suggested the Spicy Chicken Sandwich Deluxe. Alrighty then. (Later, I found out this was not only the most expensive sandwich, but the one with the most calories. Gee, thanks girlfriend.) I wanted to keep the meal classic, so I bypassed the carrot and raisin salad (WTF) and ordered a small fry and a small peach milkshake. What—it’s limited edition and came highly recommended. 

Do you know how big a small peach shake is at Chick-fil-A? In my search for an ounce count, I accidentally discovered how many calories are in that sucker. I had to close the page before I gained five pounds just reading about it. We’ll equate it to the size of a venti iced Starbucks. With whipped cream exploding out of the lid. And a little cherry dangling on top. I felt real good about myself carrying that bad boy back to my sister’s apartment. 

Oh who cares. It was delicious and worth it. And I now understand people’s obsession with the place. The fries didn’t do anything for me, but the chicken did taste better than any other fast food chicken. Not a life changing experience, but worth a try. My only regret is I ate all of this three hours before my three-month awaited reservation at Girl and the Goat. Oh well. As the Countess would say, “Chic, c’est la vie!

2 August 2011

Girl and the Goat, Chicago

"You’re going to laugh, but I swear you have to order the green beans. And the pig face," a friend wisely told me the night before my third and final mind- (and stomach)-blowing dinner in Chicago, at Girl and the Goat.

The year-old restaurant is helmed by Stephanie Izard, winner of Top Chef season four, the only female winner in the show’s history. She’s so present at Girl and the Goat—she is the “girl,” after all. She regularly visits the farms that source her food, and we watched her cook in the kitchen while we sipped our pre-dinner wine. Even though the restaurant has a huge following, it’s cool to see that she hasn’t sold out. From the giant psychedelic girl-and-goat mural, to the casualness of the restaurant’s website, the place definitely has a very “Stephanie” feel. It all works, and that’s why the place was 100% packed at 6 pm on a Wednesday nite.

My sister and I secured reservations months prior—I even made my own separate reservation, just in case the little Chower screwed things up. (This is serious foodie business!) When one of my sister’s co-workers found out she was going Wednesday, he called for his own reservation…and couldn’t get in until October. Hint hint!

Of course you can probably guess the real reason Girl and the Goat has racked up so many accolades and followers. Each dish not only looked, but tasted intricately and passionately prepared. Every bite demanded your full attention. Nothing was overrated. 

The menu is broken down into three categories: vegetables, fish, and meat. There are also three daily bread specials. On Wednesday, we chose between breads made with lobster, blueberries, or a sourdough with house churned butter and beer cheese smear. Our waitress told us to go with the latter, and after it was delivered to our table and devoured, I found myself licking my knife clean. The butter was more vibrant and flavorful than any I had ever tasted. And is beer cheese ever wrong? No, no it is not.

As assumed, my dining companions didn’t go for the pig face, but we ordered most of the veggie dishes. How did this meat and potatoes town get so good with the veggies? The kohlrabi salad with fennel, evalon, toasted almonds, blueberry, and ginger dressing; the roasted cauliflower with pickled peppers, pine nuts, and mint; the chickpeas fritters with romesco, hazelnut hummus, sesame, and goat feta; and of course, the green beans with a sauce so rich, if it weren’t for the fantastic crunch, it would have seemed that I wasn’t eating vegetables at all. It’s easier to make dessert or meat taste good, but If a restaurant can make vegetables the stand out dish, you know you’re in good hands.

I’m making my next reservation at Girl and the Goat at the same time I book another plane ticket to Chicago.

Themed by Hunson. Originally by Josh