Thursday, November 26, 2009

King of Papaya's

You might be like me and be fascinated in the causal relationship betwixt events. Specifically how one thing leads to another.

A fortnight back I found myself in Gotham witnessing Jude Law play 'Hamlet'. It was a solid performance for sure; one not soon to be forgotten. However, readers, note that I've never reviewed a play on this blog. Right? But let's go with the notion that life imitates art, and as Hamlet was driven to do certain things so was yours truly.

Evening in question didn't afford time for a proper repast. By the time that LS and I reached the Upper East Side, the side walks had literally been rolled into Louis Vuitton carrying cases. We did manage to find one spot for a cocktail- thanks in part to my Yelp app. Nothing like a Manhattan in, well, Manhattan:

Now a finely mixed drink of bourbon, sweat vermouth and bitters on an empty stomach can produce cravings. I'll bet you didn't know that! So what do we suppose is open on the Upper East Side around 2ish on a Saturday evening. As noted above, not much. But if one should find oneself in the vicinity of 86th and 3rd Papaya King is beckoning:

I am a Chicagoan- born here actually- but I've never been able to get my mind around our over embellished hot dogs. Papaya King hit the spot on the night in question. A suitable salty encased meat product, smothered with kraut and a special hot sauce, nestled in a bun is a mouth-gasm! At any time really, but especially on a belly full of bourbon:

What to take from this? That Shakespeare has something to do with NYC style hot dogs? If you will, I suppose. Rather, I like to look at the tide of events. The inter-relation of it all never ceases to amaze. In a sense Shakespeare does lead one to eat hot dogs. I mean I'm not talking about anything cosmic here.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy 27th!

Wow, I've truly neglected this blog. I've actually had plenty of reason to write, but given my state I am loathe to see this blog read like a suicide note. So I've maintained my silence. Until now that is.

Last night I was invited by CP and PH to join them for Yoshi's 27th anniversary. Note this spot has been written about previously. It's beginning to become kind of a guilty pleasure, huh? As I've mentioned Yoshi has a number of loyal customers, so the place was full. Nice to see on a gloomy Tuesday evening.

We started with a Bombay martini- yes we are purists:

Quickly we were into the First Course of Kaiseki Style Appetizer of BBQ Eel Sushi, Chicken Roulade and Crab Cake. Take a gander foodies:

Since there were three diners and three Main Course options:
  • Steamed Half Lobster- you guessed that was mine, right?
  • Wagyu Brisket- PH
  • Oven Roasted White Fish- CP
We felt we needed to give each it's due. Here's a pic of the lobster:

Then on to dessert. Mind you I am not a fan of dessert, but it was a Baked Asian Pear Covered with a Puff Pastry. I do like pears, and to be honest am hard pressed to identify a puff pastry I 've met and haven't liked. It was pretty tasty also. Here's a shot:

Because this blogger is kind of feeling sorry for himself, really I am, it was comforting to spend the evening with good friends in a lovely, festive surrounding. Thanks much guys!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

A Week of Gastronomy

I have been neglecting this blog lately. One reason is simply not remembering to blog, another is that I am somewhat constrained in terms of the content. Since I don't address politics or news timeliness isn't so much a factor.

Nevertheless I am moved to blog as I have enjoyed several dining experiences as of late and feel compelled to share them with you, my readers.

The first takes us back to Tuesday last when I had the please of dining at Yoshi's Cafe in the Lakeview neighborhood. I had eaten there once previously for my friend, CP's natal day. But that was nearly three years back, and since we (CP and his partner PH) have a monthly dining outing, I suggested Yoshi's. Granted not much of a treat for them, since they dine here weekly. CP has actually been something of a regular for 20+ years, so he is well known. So last Tuesday- 1/2 price martini night- I enjoyed a Ginger Cosmo, a broccoli soup to start, and a seafood Nicoise salad. The tastiest element was the shrimp tempura made from fresh gulf shrimp. Rather sweet on the palate but overall very clean:

From November 2009

The following evening took me to a little Mexican Cafe around the corner from our pool. One of my favorite dishes there is a the Posole- a hearty soup of hominy, broth and pork shoulder. It is served with cilantro and cabbage as garnish, and tortilla:

From November 2009

I enjoy soups muchly. I always feel they are the gateway to a cuisine or restaurant. If the soup is inadequate, the rest of the place is likely to be as well. So this Sunday I set to making a black bean and ham hock concoction suggested by my friend HK. It is easy to make in the Crock Pot, makes the apartment smell divine, and is hearty and satisfying:

From November 2009

I accompanied this dish with a Manhattans served in my new '50's style cordial glasses. I picked them up for $1 ea (set of 4) and think they are a natty addition to my settings.

From November 2009

I would've made a blog post about Halloween. It is my favorite holiday after all. Yet I took no photos, wrapped up as I was in the festivities. It was an enjoyable and glam weekend to say the least.