I miss my bed. It’s been a few weeks now that I’ve been ping-ponging from city to city for work and it’s starting to wear on me. Fortunately, in my line of work there’s a lot of fun mixed in with business and it usually comes in the form of tasty food. Last week was an exhausting, whirlwind week with back-to-back meetings, lots of face time to be had, and, as if that weren’t enough, it culminated in my dear friend’s wedding. Despite, I made sure to make time for some good food. Here are the New York highlights:
Perhaps it was the wrap around bar or the moody lighting but, I walked in and got freaked that Degustation was going to take itself too seriously. But then a guy down the bar started talking at that volume that only comes after a few too many drinks, the cooks started chatting up the patrons, and the server pontificated about her hatred for hipsters as we decided on what to eat. We did our part to try out the menu and ordered up six different tapas-sized dishes. Everything was well-thought out and pretty, but some dishes were so-so while others just sang. The tops of the night? The ham and cheese croquetas, the black cod with charred trumpet mushrooms, and the crudo with Picholine olives and, my fave, Fresno chiles.
You gotta be careful here because if you eat too much, it’ll give you the fat sweats. Not a pretty thing but inevitable at a place where the food is an unapologetic ode to fat. I found myself in the neighborhood with a bit of time to spare between meetings and The Breslin, with its cozy dark wood interior and rock music, was the perfect solution to the blustery late winter day. In attempts to eat as much as I could handle, I ordered the onion and bone marrow soup and the roasted poussin with pumpkin, both which were huge portions even for a seasoned eater like myself. The soup was french onion soup on crack with Parmesan toast and decadent bone marrow while the poussin had awesome warm spices and paired fabulously with the sweet roast pumpkin and tart pomegranate seeds. Understandably, I didn’t make it to dessert but I can still hear that Eton Mess, it’s softly calling my name, and I’ll return to pay it a visit asap.
Until recently, there have been few places in Manhattan doing top-notch coffee so if I’m on the west side and have a hankering for spot-on drip coffee, I get Grumpy. The logo itself is itself worth a look but you’ll quickly focus on the coffee once you sip their Clover-brewed drip. I ordered a cup for a normal coffee drinker (aka not the freak show coffee fiend I am) and, as we left the shop, she stopped me mid sentence to tell me it was the only cup of drip she’s ever felt guilty about adding cream or sugar too. Maybe next time I’ll talk her into actually leaving that stuff out so she can enjoy how smooth and flavorful the coffee is on its own.
Do you know how much I love pretzels? I mean, when it comes to snacky starches, they stand second only to graham crackers. I am always searching out great pretzels and top-notch pastries, so when I learned The City Bakery has a pretzel-flavored croissant, I was all over it. And now, years have passed, and I make special trips to get my fill each time I’m out east. It’s salty, malty, chewy, yet crusty and is so addictive that I could finish the whole thing in 5 seconds flat were I embarrassed at the thought.