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Monday, April 25, 2011

Passover Play-by-Play: Day 7

I am so close to the finish line!  For lunch today, I had a salad and sashimi.  Tip for Passover-keepers: if you go to a sushi restaurant and order a sashimi platter, you can completely forget it's Passover.  It's a beautiful thing.  I mean, I know the whole idea of Passover is to remember, but whatevs.

I expected to leave work earlier than I did, but my computer program was just not cooperating, so I missed my gym class and went straight home to prepare dinner - my last Passover dinner of the year.  I had taken out chicken, so it we had a meat meal on our hands.  I didn't have much in my fridge, but I made the most of it.  I covered the chicken with teriyaki sauce and threw it in the oven.  Meanwhile, I started sauteing leftover cremini mushrooms with some fresh spinach.  The teriyaki marinade set the tone for an Asian-inspired meal, so I sauteed the spinach/mushroom mixture with a little soy sauce and sriracha.  It wasn't anything crazy special, but I managed to make a flavorful, healthy meal with only three ingredients and a few sauces/seasonings I had in my fridge.

Now I just have to make it til sundown tomorrow and then we're all done with this awful holiday!

Unanswered Questions: Gossip Girl Recap - 4/25/11 Episode

This episode was definitely better than last week's.  There is definitely some shady stuff going on that we'll have to watch unfold, but let's focus on what's currently going on for now:

  • Would Lily really shop on Gilt Group?  I get the product placement, but if she can't shop on Madison Ave., someone like Lily Van der Woodsen would call up Donatella herself if she wanted clothes and couldn't leave the house, not scour the web for discount duds.
  • Raina wants to hide all the information about her mother from she leaves it right out in the open in his apartment?
  • Question to all readers: Have you ever kissed anyone to confirm you don't have feelings for him/her?  No!  That only happens in movies and is not a plausible excuse, Blair.  
  • Where's the real Blair?  The one we've grown to love has spent way too much time practicing deception in the UES to think no one would find out about her and Dan's kiss at a packed party.  That was a careless error, B. 
  • Has anyone better described Serena's clothes than Blair who said "No, that says 'Let's skip dinner and make a sex tape'"?
Congrats, GG, this episode kept me interested in the season.

Passover Play-by-Play: Day 6

Hopefully, you read all about yesterday’s brunch, but it’s time to recap the rest of Day 6.  Dan is in town for a very short visit but managed to squeeze me in for dinner with Matt and Karina.  Since they were driving into the city from Queens, they said we could do dinner by my apartment to make life easier for me.  That would have been a great deal on any night, but it was especially nice not to travel last night because it started raining right around dinner time.

The problem with dinner in my neighborhood is that there is a plethora of Italian spots, a few Asian restaurants, and not much else.  Pizza, pasta, and pad thai are all anti-Passover, so I had to do a little thinking to come up with someplace that worked.  Then I remembered Dardanel, a Mediterranean seafood place that I’ve ordered from before.  The food was always good when I had it delivered and the restaurant is only two blocks away – more than enough rationale for me. 

We got a large shepherd’s salad for the table (chopped cucumber, tomato, onion, and feta), though I’ll admit, I ate the lion’s share.  The veggies were fresh and crunchy, just how I wanted to start the meal.  I was jealous watching Dan sop up the extra feta and salad liquid with his bread.  I’ve had the bread and know how good that would have been.  Sadness for me.  Dan ordered the manti, little lamb dumplings in yogurt sauce.  I’ve had the dish before and it’s not bad, but a little too heavy on the yogurt and seasonings.  I think if you go to Dardanel, the fish is the way to go.  I ordered the dorado and Matt got the branzino.   For the most part, the fish was fileted nicely, but I found a few bones in the middle - nothing I couldn’t work around.  The fish was char-grilled so there were some nice crusty bits with that good grill flavor.  I believe grilling fish adds some depth to the fish so I often gravitate toward it on a menu and in the case of Dardanel, it was a good move.

On my way out the restaurant, we noticed they have a nice little special going.  If you dine at the bar, you get a glass of wine and entrée for $19.  Considering my fish alone was $22, this is quite the deal.  Next time I’m craving Mediterranean, I’ll grab my book and sit at the bar instead of ordering in.  It’s definitely a neighborhood place with lots of parents and families.  It wouldn’t be a place to run across town to, but if you’re a Midtown East-er, I would definitely consider it a good dinner spot. 

Once again, it looks like fish has won out as the go-to Passover meal.  Just down to two more days and since I've made it through the decidedly more difficult weekend, I'm in the home stretch!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Pick Prune

My friend Josh is moving to Chicago at the end of June, so I am trying to squeeze in as much time with him while I still can.  We planned to meet up with a few fellow Country Day kids for brunch and I left the picking up to Josh.  He chose Prune because he heard their "brunch is supposedly unreal."  I had heard the same thing (also about dinner) so I was all about his selection.

The restaurant is tiny (enough table seating for about 12 people and then bar seating for five more) so we had to put our names on the list and wait for a while.  I'm not gonna lie, it was a long wait, but if it's a gorgeous Spring die like it was today, you won't mind putting your name on the list and wandering around the LES/East Village.  Speaking of the Spring weather, let's just stop for a moment and appreciate how gorgeous it was today.  I forgot how many people lived in New York.  For months and months, everybody has been holed up in their apartments.  But today, the sun was shining, which means everybody was out and about, and I couldn't walk down the street without grazing someone's arm.  It was definitely time to break out the seersucker.

Everything on the menu looked great, but since today was Day 5 of Passover, I had to pick if I wanted to go the meat or dairy route.  I went with meat, so instead of getting one of the regular meals on the menu, I ordered two poached eggs, lamb sausage, and potato rosti (potato pancake).  It may not have been as exciting as some of the other meals on the menu, but it was prepared nicely, so I was happy with my choice.  The service was also to be noted.  Josh is a bumbling idiot and dropped half of his eggs benedict on the floor, covering his pants with hollandaise even before taking the first bite.  It was not necessary to reward his clumsiness, but the waitress quickly brought out a replacement. 

The best part of the meal - hands down - was the bloody mary menu.  There were ten different versions of the classic brunch libation and they got increasingly interesting as I went down the list.  I chose the Green Lake which was a classic bloody (prepared with the PERFECT amount of horseradish/spices) with wasabi and a beef jerky swizzler.  They bring all the bloodies to the table with a Red Stripe chaser.  It was amazing.  I will go back to Prune just for the bloody marys.  I've scanned the dinner menu and all the food looked like things I would enjoy.  They may not have bloodies at dinner time, but they do take reservations so I'm sure I'll be back.

Love is Blind

Once again, Rocio decided to celebrate her birthday on a Friday night and although I was tired from the work week, I made sure to rally so I could celebrate with her.  I had never heard of The Blind Barber, but it was a good enough bar to make me happy I ditched my usual Friday night DVR date.  You enter through a barber shop with a single chair and through a sliding wooden door held open by an imposing bouncer.  The barber shop is no mere facade - for $20, a guy can get a trim and a drink during the daytime.  At night, both the barbershop and the bar behind it are very Sweeney Todd with candelabras on the wall and dark, checkered floors.  I am pretty sure they can make a mean drink, but I didn't get the chance to look at the menu so I just went with a Jack and Diet.  

The only problem was the line.  It may not be a huge bar, but it was nowhere near filled to capacity; yet they were being extremely stingy at the door and we were not willing to pay $500 for bottle service to guarantee the late arrivals would be allowed in the bar.  Once people started having problems getting in, we decided to go elsewhere.  It was a small birthday setback, but I recognize that it was still a great bar.  I definitely want to go back with just a few friends and get there early enough so we don't have to worry about snooty people manning the door. 

Passover Play-by-Play: Days 4 and 5

In terms of food, yesterday and today were not super exciting, but in the spirit of documenting my Passover observance experiment, I'll fill you in:

  • Yesterday:
    • For lunch, I made a big salad with all sorts of interesting ingredients from the Whole Foods salad bar.  There is so much to choose from on this salad bar!  They have all the expected veggies, but then they have out of the ordinary proteins (like lentils and faro) and salads (beets and apples, salmon and orzo, antipasi, etc.) that can make your salad special.  I have found one of hardest things to cook for one is salad.  Unless I eat it for both lunch and dinner two days in a row, the veggies go bad before I can use them up and the salad bar lets me take just the amount of sprouts or sliced cucumber I need. 
    • Dinner was mostly leftovers, plus some homemade pimento cheese on matzah.  When I realized pimento cheese was a totally acceptable Passover dish, I was a very happy girl.  Matzah may not have been my cracker of choice, but when topped with the pimento cheese, it wasn't so Passover-y
    • Late night snack: One of my college roomies, Michelle, was in town so we spent the evening out at the bars.  After hopping from bar to bar in the rain, we walked into The Meatball Shop for some late night drunk food.  Michelle had heard about the restaurant from a friend and wanted to try it.  Since it is one of my favorites, I was happy to enable.  I didn't really know what I would be able to eat, but I was happy to learn the special of the day was Grandma's Balls.  I asked what were in them and found out they were actually a Passover special.  I never expected an Italian eatery to cater to the dietary needs of Jewish New Yorkers, but there they were, preparing beef meatballs with ketchup and matzah.  They were delicious and meatloaf-like.  Since I'm not eating bread, I went with the just balls option and gave Michelle my focaccia.  The vegetable of the day was snap peas with lemon herb butter.  This time, I don't think the Passover-friendly nature of the dish was intentional, but they were tasty nonetheless.  The only problem of the evening was that I inadvertently broke Passover by mixing milk and dairy.  I'll blame it on my alcohol consumption, but I decided on the pesto sauce for my meatballs.  I was so concerned about not getting one of the cream-based sauces that I completely forgot pesto is made with parmesan cheese.  I was halfway through my meal before it all clicked.  I'll admit, I woke up kind of hating myself for the mistake and feeling guilty that I enjoyed it.  The pesto wasn't on the menu last time I was there, but I think it was a necessary and perfectly made addition to the menu.  I am disappointed about my meat/dairy setback, but I will not let it throw me off track.  I am back on the Passover wagon.
  • Today: Leftovers and soup (spring onion from Whole Foods) all day long.  Good but blah.
Tomorrow, I think I'll get back to cooking.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Passover Play-by-Play: Day 3

For the majority of the day, I simply grazed.  I nibbled on dried mango, cashews, and deli meat (turkey and roast beef) with Russian dressing.  All the while, I was giving death eyes to everyone else enjoying both (because, yes, there were two) pizza parties at my office.  Pizza is one of my all-time favorite foods, but it screams not-cool-on-Passover so I just had to deal.

Things turned around at dinner.  You may or may not have heard (and I'm banking on "may not" because I doubt you're up on your daily Jewish reading), but there has been a big debate over whether or not quinoa is kosher for Passover.  This turned into something of a big deal *gasp*.  Well, you can all calm down because the New York Times just reported that, yup, it's cool and I couldn't be happier.  That's a great addition to my Passover repertoire.  I wanted something easy to cook, so I went with a burrito bowl, using quinoa instead of rice.  I put pre-marinated cilantro swordfish atop a pile of quinoa, pico de gallo, avocado, cheese, and sour cream.  It had all the flavors of your favorite tortilla-wrapped meal, but it was Passover-friendly and healthier (thanks to the quinoa).  I'm sorry you can't see all the layers in the pic; but trust me, it was delish.

Three days down and five to go.  Everything has been healthy and tasty thus far, but we're heading into the weekend, aka: The Danger Zone.


Gleecap: Diva-meter - 4/19/11 Episode

Glee was back from hiatus this week and I found it to be a little lackluster.  I'm keeping hope alive, though, as it looks like it's going to get much better as we approach Nationals.  For now, let's recap the highs and lows of this week's episode with our Diva-meter.

  • The equation for taffy that Mr. Schuster writes on the board is wrong.  5,000 x .25 does NOT equal 20,000.  +1 because I caught that.
  • +2 for the other categories in the Smarty Pants competition which include:
    • Fat or Pregnant
    • History of Shoehorns
    • Famous Mervs
    • Defunct Sodas
  • Sue passes out beepers to her henchmen.  +1 because she must have worked very hard to find beepers.  I would have no idea where to look for that now completely irrelevant piece of technology.
  • +1 for Sandy.  While he wasn't as amaaazing as usual, the Pink Dagger had a few good moments, such as his all pink outfit (including cape and hat with Pink Dagger logo) and the fact that he refers to himself as a "predatory gay."
  • Why did Santana have to ruin a good ghetto, Lima Heights Adjacent moment (scaring Karofsky with the razors all up in her hair) with "It was more fun doing it together"?  Too cheesy. -1
  • Mercedes demands were only ok and not overly creative...until she requested a fresh puppy to dry her hands. +1
  • Was anyone else bothered by the fact that none of the artists were really neglected? -2
Total: 3 --> This episode was the diva equivalent of Julianne Hough.  Like our Glee club, she's trying to make it and is clearly talented, but what she's best known and loved for is her work of days past.  We're pulling for you.

Passover Play-by-Play: Day 2

Ok, two days into this holiday and I'm still going strong.  Let's break it down:
  • Lunch: I brought leftovers to work.  Turns out this was a bad idea.  Today I learned olive tapenade smells god-awful when heated up.  It looked and tasted good, but when I reheated it, it smelled terrible.  Everyone was walking by going "What's that smell?  It smells so weird in here," so I threw it away and washed the bowl rigorously.  It was very embarrassing.
  • Snack: Since lunch was a major fail, I snacked on some crudite that was left over from a meeting and lying around the office. Veggies and dip is a good snack any day of the week and totally Passover-friendly.
  • Dinner: I decided to build the meal around salmon because fish is considered neither milk nor meat - it can go either way.  Basically, it's the bisexual of the kosher world.  This means I get my protein and can still have cheese/dairy in the meal - best of both worlds.  I baked the salmon in lemon juice and capers and then topped it with a cucumber dill yogurt sauce.  This was a great way to cook fish.  Tons of flavor and very healthy (thanks to 0% Greek yogurt).  For the side dish, I tried a new recipe tonight and attempted a spinach pie/casserole.  I layered matzah (that I soaked in water first), spinach, mushrooms, and feta.  I should have probably used some egg and maybe cream to bind it all together, but this still worked.  The recipe will need to be tweaked, but it was a good start.   

So today was half good, half bad, but I'm only two days into this experiment and I anticipate my Passover food will only get better.

Princess Pics

Most young girls are raised to believe it is not only possible but probably they will one day marry a prince. More specifically, here's how it would likely go down: You're walking down the street and see a boy.  In most scenarios, you don't realize he's actually a prince since usually he's posing as a commoner to see how normal people live.  Disguised or not, you somehow charm him, typically after insulting him because you don't care that he's a prince - girl power and all that.  Next thing you know, you're living in a palace with servants and your pick of the crown jewels.

Thanks to the many movies that follow this plotline, I still think that I will quite literally meet my Prince Charming and am enthralled by all things royal.  Like many, my royal fascination has gone into overdrive due to Prince William and Kate Middleton's impending wedding.  To fuel my obsession, I have a new favorite Kate Middleton tumblr: Kate Middleton For The Win.  Enjoy.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Passover Play-by-Play: Day 1

Passover is by far the most difficult holiday for me.  Although my family is not particularly religious, we try to observe this one holiday - no small feat in Savannah, GA where I shouldn't have to tell you there is a dearth of kosher items.  Why up the observance factor on this holiday vs. any other?  No clue.  I'm pretty sure my parents put the names of all Jewish holidays in a hat and picked this one.  The family that eats bacon for breakfast, lunch, and dinner suddenly goes totally kosher plus the extra mile for Passover (no bread, corn syrup, etc.).  I fully admit this is incredibly bizarre.

Now that I am on my own in New York, I have slackened the observance ropes a bit (again, I admit it's weird to do so now, considering I moved to a place where being Jewish is more normal and accepted).  I am a big girl now and get to make my own rules according to what makes sense to me.  That's called maturity.  For me, that means no bread products (nothing with flour) and I try to avoid those foods that are on the fence regarding what's acceptable (rice, corn/corn syrup, legumes).  On top of that, I follow those normal kosher rules that the good Jews do all year long (no pork, shellfish, or mixing of meat and dairy).  It feels bizarre to observe the Passover stuff but not the regular stuff - like I'm cheating - so I go for the full enchilada (which, incidentally, I can't eat during Passover).

Why do I torture myself like this for eight days?  Because it's torture.  You may have heard me joke that I am not the best Jewess around.  Well these eight days remind me that I am, in fact, Jewish and should be proud of it.  Do you realize how difficult observing like this is?!  It's not easy, but there are a few perks:

  1. Combined with exercise, I may lose weight.  This is the original Atkins diet, after all.
  2. It causes me to get super creative with my meals.
  3. I'll emerge with quite the sense of accomplishment.
I've decided to document my Passover meals to keep myself motivated and maybe give you Jewish readers some ideas for your own Passover meals.  So here we go:

I didn't bring lunch to work so I had to go out.  Salad is a good go-to during this holiday, so I went to Chop't, my favorite of all the salad restaurants due to their extensive topping and dressing selection.  I wanted cheese on my salad and a dairy dressing, so I gave up the meat and piled on the veggies.   It was delicious, as always, but the best part was that Chop't is apparently Jew-friendly and offered matzah instead of the usual flatbread wedge for those of us observing.  As if I needed another reason to go to Chop't, they won my full adoration by showing such consideration.  Thanks, buddy.

Dinner time.  I needed some protein tonight, so I picked up a flank steak.  This is usually where it gets tough for me.  I put cheese on everything and by picking steak, I knew there could be no dairy in sight.  Like I said, this holiday forces creativity.  I eventually came up with a meal so satisfying, I didn't even miss the cheese: flank steak topped with green olive tapenade, sauteed radishes and onions, and deviled eggs.  I cooked the steak with cayenne, paprika, and chile powder so it had a nice crust of smoky, peppery spice and topped with the salty tapenade just before serving.  This recipe will definitely survive post-Passover.  I didn't even know you could saute radishes until my Mom sent me a recipe.  It is definitely a good way to mix up the veggie game.  And finally, deviled eggs, which we all know are spectacular, especially mine.

Day one down, seven to go.

Unanswered Questions: Gossip Girl Recap - 4/18/11 Episode

Gossip Girl was back from hiatus last night and while I was happy to have a more robust Monday night viewing schedule, I realize just how far this show has drifted from plausibility.  We’ll see how much longer this recap will last, because – let’s face it – Gossip Girl is no longer the best show on tv.  The show was great when there was a glimmer of truth in these prep school kids’ lives, but now it is so completely far-fetched.  Oh well, that’s how I’m feeling now; I could always change my mind.  Since I’m still on the fence, we’ll soldier on with this week’s Unanswered Questions:
  • Does Vanessa only pop up every couple episodes to stir up dramz by leaving a voicemail for someone to tell them their loved one has eyes for someone else?  I think she’s done this four times already.  When will she learn?
  • When Charlie shows up at the Modern Royalty photo shoot, did she think the family’s theme was ice capades?  It looks like she’s prepping to be on Skating with the Stars.  Serena dropped $1000 on her at Intermix and that's what she wound up with?  I would have at least expected a dress featuring some side boob with Serena as stylist. 
  • Speaking of Charlie’s outfit at the Modern Royalty shoot, did anyone else notice she’s in white while everyone else in the family is wearing black?  Symbolism!
  • How much satin is too much?  There are way too many shiny sheets at Blair/Serena/Charlie’s slumber party.  I felt like I was looking at what’s left after a Playboy shoot.
  • Uh oh.  Dan’s making goo goo eyes at Charlie during brunch.  Is this boy capable of liking anyone he’s not quasi-related to?  And wasn't he just staring longingly after Serena once Blair said the kiss meant nothing (though of course, up until she said that, he was into Blair)?  No one moves from girl to girl that fast...oh wait; teenage boys do.
  • Didn't Papa Van der Woodsen have to leave NYC by helicopter to escape the law?  If he's on the run, I'm thinking a very public photo shoot is not the best idea.
  • Does Lily really think she's going to teach crafts in jail like Martha Stewart?  I don't think that woman has crafted anything other than an alibi her entire life.
  • So clearly Charlie’s going to turn out to be some form of wackadoo, as her mother cryptically indicated to Lily.  If your child is, indeed, nutso and you’re about to let her live with another family, shouldn’t you give them a liiiittle more advice than “watch her”?  
As I'm sure you expected, most of our questions revolved around fresh meat Charlie.  Can't wait to see where that leads! 

Monday, April 18, 2011

A Wine Wonder

Matt and Jen opened my eyes this weekend to a beautiful thing: Saturday wine tastings at Union Square Wines.  Do you like wine?  If you’re a red-blooded human being, the answer is probably “yes.”  Unless you’re the freak of nature who replied “no” to that question, you’ll be happy to learn that Union Square Wines has a free – YES, FREE – wine tasting every Saturday.  Walk to the back of the store, grab a glass, and start tasting.  The pours are small, but there are four tables - each serving six wines - so you’ll definitely get a glass or two’s worth.  This week it was all about pinot noir and I discovered some new faves that I’ll probably go back and buy.  If I was smart, however, I would have bought a bottle or two right then and there because featured wines are offered at a 30% discount.

This is a great way for winos to try a wide range of wines from different regions and price points.  Prices ranged from $15 bottles to a $96 bottle – I never would have been able to try that 96er if it wasn’t for this, so it was well worth it. 

As you’ll see in the pic below, a three-week-old is not enough to hold Jen back, so she strapped Avery into the Bijorn and got to tasting.  I’m glad we’re starting Avery young.  If I have anything to do with it, she’ll be the youngest sommelier in history.

Beauty's Best Match Since the Beast

I finally made my way to Beauty and Essex on Thursday night to see what’s been pulling the Beautiful people out of Meatpacking and into the LES.  We went from seedy to glam in time it took to walk through the pawn shop façade that fronts the restaurant (and yes, those guitars and sparkly brooches really are for purchase).  The décor was art deco in black and bronze with enough chandeliers and wall sculptures to keep my eyes bouncing from mirror to prevalent mirror.

The amuse bouche started the night off right – a beet marmalade on top of a lentil chip.  The table was split on this one but as a beet fan, I sided with the “pro” group.  The menu is small plate style and the waitress recommended two items per person.  For tapas, it seemed a little pricy, but once the plates came out, we realized they were larger than your typical tapas and we definitely over-ordered.  The food was so good we made ourselves try everything that came out of the kitchen, even as we crossed the line from foodies to gluttons.  Here’s the rundown:
  • Kobe Beef Carpaccio: buttery paper thin beef topped with wasabi egg yolk, crunchy wontons, sesame nori.  This definitely ranked up there for me.  The crunchy wonton/nori topping was a new pairing for me when it comes to carpaccio, which I normally match with Italian flavors.  This was a great change.
  • Yellowtail Crudo: with caramelized citrus yuzu, avocado, cilantro.  Very refreshing.
  • Roasted Bone Marrow: served with toast and rioja braised shallot marmalade.  My dog, Chloe, would have gone APE for these giant marrow bones.  You don’t need to be a canine to appreciate this dish.  The sweet marmalade moderated the fatty marrow and deep meat flavor.  This one was one of my two choices and I gave myself a nice pat on the back for my pick.
  • Kale and Apple Salad: apple cider vinaigrette, pancetta, candied pecans, shaved goat cheese.  I thought this would be the boring choice of the evening but there were so many layers of flavor it turned into a memorable dish.  The apples brightened up the intense flavor of the kale and the pancetta…well there are few pairings more appropriate than greens and bacon, right?
  • Chicken Fried Oysters: apple & bacon braised spinach.  This was my second pick.  The batter was a little salty, but the spinach tamed that.  Fried oysters are a Southern fave, so I was right at home with this one.
  • Salt and Pepper Shrimp with miso-sambal mayo: not the most exciting dish of the evening but prepared well.
  • Salt and Vinegar Fries: see description of salt and pepper shrimp above
  • Lobster Tacos: beer battered maine lobster, red cabbage slaw, jalapeno crema.  I’m a fish taco fiend and this was a new version.  I think this may be the first time I’ve ever had fried lobster.  I know this is a “what could be bad?!” situation, but in case you were wondering, me likey.
  • Seared Nori Spiced Tuna: with wasabi parsnip puree, miso glazed asparagus & roasted shiitake salad.  The preparation was not what I expected after reading the description – it was better.  I would, however, have liked the tuna a little rarer.
  • Charred Shishito Peppers with lime salt: Another first for me.  These Japanese peppers may replace edamame for me as an app next time I get sushi.
  • Oven Braised Chicken Meatballs with sheep’s milk ricotta, wild mushroom, truffle:  These super moist meatballs made me re-evaluate my disdain for non-meat meatballs.
  • Garganelli: spicy, creamy veal bolognese, whipped little italy ricotta.  This was a solid pasta dish that I would like to re-create at home.
  • Heritage Baby Back Ribs: with tangerine barbeque glaze and tempura onion rings.  Fall off the bone meat always floats my boat.  A little weird to eat with my hands, but considering we’d already had 14,000,000 courses by this point, I didn’t even care.
  •  We also got two desserts (molten chocolate bread pudding and the box of doughnuts), but they were nothing to write home about.  They were a little too rich for my taste.  I like chocolate, but it was too much in the bread pudding – the whole thing was like the inside of a molten lava cake.

Not to sound like a grandma, but the restaurant was a little loud  However, this problem was easy to overlook after tasting the food and receiving great service (the waitress even made sure my basil gimlet was less sweet, per my preference).  This is not a date place (especially with the noise level), but if you’re looking for a fun girls night, they’ve got you covered.  When you get bored of staring at the friends you came with, don’t worry; there is some above par people watching to be done.  There was a nice mix of 20-somethings in sky-high heels, finance guys who managed to pull themselves away from their usual Thursday night Midtown and Meatpacking watering holes, and cougars in some bejeweled, skin-tight, backless wonders.  And the pick up line of the evening goes to the 40-year-old who said he just got an iPhone and needs someone to teach him how to use it.  Sorry, Gramps, I’m not your girl.  
Leading upstairs - the walls are furry, like in "Get Him to the Greek"
Carpaccio - the best pic of the food I was able to get


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