22 April 2010

No. 7 Sub

No. 7 Sub is a recently-opened sandwich shop in the Flatiron District. Though in the same building as the Ace Hotel, its entrance is very discreet... until you see the line of people waiting to place their orders. I've learned that people eat lunch later than noon in NYC, so if you can make it before 1:00 or so, you're golden. Not that several of the sandwiches aren't worth waiting for - they are.

Today for lunch I had the braised lamb sub, with peanut butter, mint jelly, romaine, and papadam. It was delicious.

I was also sure to try a black-and-white cookie, which is my favorite cookie on the planet ("...and yet somehow racial harmony still eludes us."). The cashier let me know they were also selling caramel black-and-whites on this particular day, so naturally I also had to try one of those. Their traditional b&w is in fact untraditional in that the cookie is actually chocolate rather than vanilla. This is good - everyone loves chocolate, right? The caramel version was also great - the perfect salty bite in a sweet cookie.

The menu at No. 7 Sub changes frequently, so I'll have to make it back soon. The earlier in the day, though, the better: when they run out of bread that's it for the day.

On a somewhat related topic: I just found this (horrible cell phone) picture of a huge batch of b&w cookies I made several years ago. I was serious when I said they're my favorite. :)

17 April 2010

A Lovely Brunch

I met my (dad's) cousin Jeanne for brunch on a gorgeous Saturday afternoon at Pulino's Bar & Pizzeria, the new Nate Appleman spot owned by Keith McNally. We shared several plates...

mediterranean bloody marys
fresh asparagus
baked ricotta with proscuitto and roasted bread
roasted sunchoke and red cabbage salad with pancetta, oranges, honey, and pecorino
"acciughe" pizza: anchovies, tomato, mozzarella, capers, garlic, and basil
gelati et sorbetti sampler: dark chocolate gelato, buttermilk brown sugar gelato, and orange sorbet with fennel
milano cookie plate: almond and pistachio

What made this meal so enjoyable was the chance to reconnect with Jeanne; I can't remember the last time I saw her. We talked for hours about her job and mine, music, and life in NYC (primarily Brooklyn, where she lives). When reconsidering the food at Pulino's, I would say it was very good, but that maybe I expect a little more from Appleman. The gelati, sorbet, and cookies (by Jane Tseng, who traveled to NYC from San Francisco with Appleman), however: outstanding.

10 April 2010

A Day Off in NYC

Last Thursday my friend, Michael, and I met for lunch at Shake Shack in Madison Square Park. The line for burgers and shakes wrapped around the park, but it was sunny and 65 degrees, so no one was complaining. While eating our lunch on what is literally the median between Broadway and 5th Avenue disguised as a seating area (with the perfect view of the Flatiron Building's northern-most point), we couldn't help but notice several people wearing Tar Heel gear. After determining that the NIT championship game was being held that night at Madison Square Garden (which isn't even close to Madison Square Park, by the way) between the aforementioned Tar Heels of North Carolina and the Dayton Flyers, we shrugged our shoulders, stumped for a reason not to go, and decided to walk over to MSG to pick up a pair of tickets.

The game was fun, if not relatively sloppy; Roy got worked up several times, which is always fun to watch. In the end the Flyers were too much for UNC, and they took home the trophy. Congratulations on 66th place, Dayton, though at this point I'm convinced you could've given the Jayhawks a run for their money had Northern Iowa not already done so.

02 April 2010

Colicchio & Sons

After nearly two weeks, I am finally becoming accustomed to the way things are done in the Colicchio & Sons kitchen. The first week was terrifying, because rather than gradually learning the line, I was tossed directly into the insanity known as dinner service. Service has always intimidated me because it's the area in which I have the least amount of experience, not to mention I consider myself to be incredibly slow when it comes to plating. The restaurant had been relatively busy already, but throw in a couple of three-star reviews (from the New York Times and Bloomberg), and it's a whole new kind of busy. At any rate, after plenty of mistakes I finally had an error-free evening. Now I'm enjoying two days off before I go back and do it all over again...

So far I've been trained on the "hot" station, which includes: cinnamon-raisin pain perdu, topped with grapefruit caramel, grapefruit segments, candied pine nuts, and served with rosemary ice cream; coconut cream-filled doughnuts, tossed in toasted coconut sugar, served with candied macadamia nuts, lime marmalade, and caramel ice cream; beignets, tossed in powdered sugar, served with apple butter, apple slices, bourbon panna cotta, a brandysnap tuile, and sour apple granita; zeppole, also tossed in powdered sugar, served with lemon curd and vanilla ice cream; banana-pecan upside-down cake, topped with rum toffee sauce, candied pecans, and served with banana sorbet and malted milk ice cream; and a chocolate-espresso tart, served with salted caramel, bittersweet chocolate parfait, citrus salad, and blood orange sorbet. All are beautiful, all are delicious.