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eG Foodblog: johnder, slkinsey, weinoo (2011) - A tale of two boroughs

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#91 Chris Amirault

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 07:54 AM

Wow. Just... wow. Greg has always been extremely friendly with information and stuff with me, but that's some seriously amazing stuff you're playing with there. Eager to get one of those swizzle sticks soon.

Sam, can you give me a primer in how you're approaching French press? I have been trying to get back in the game after many years due to my love of Intelligensia Diablo. Grind? Temps? Times? Bloom? Stirring?
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#92 weinoo

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 07:56 AM

First, a realization...and that is that our blog may not be as cooking centric as past blogs have been. That's because New Yorkers, in general, probably dine out more than people in other parts of the country/world. I mean, if we didn't, there wouldn't be over 15,000 restaurants, would there? And the three us don't have families, per se; that is, we don't have kids, which of course changes the whole dynamic.

That said, I felt like "cooking" something for breakfast today, so without further ado...

I started with a couple of slices of this...

IMG_1033_1_1.JPG
Interestingly enough, the pan that I fry bacon in is specifically used for bacon and only one other thing. It's a Circulon pan that I can't remember where I bought and it's probably 20 - 25 years old.

I also pulled one of these out of the freezer...

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And what goes better with bacon than (well, lettuce and tomato go nicely too)...

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I decided to go with these additional ingredients, which I always on hand...

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Yep, it's fritatta time. I'm sure there are at least 4 or 5 methods for cooking a fritatta, but this is how I do mine (unless I do it another way). First, preheat your oven to 325 F. Then whisk up the eggs and stir the rest of the ingredients in.

So, we have 5 eggs, 2 artichoke hearts cut into eighths, 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese (the real stuff, please), a tablespoon of chopped flat-leaf parasley, salt and pepper to taste...

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Then, in my fritatta pan (yes, it's the same one I cooked the bacon in, but cleaned), heat up a tablespoonful each of butter and olive oil...

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When it's nice and hot, but before it browns, add the egg mixture...

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I like to fuss a little bit and make sure the ingredients are evenly spread out. Then when the fritatta just starts to set (about 2 1/2 minutes), which you can see at the edges, I move it to the oven...

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As they used to say in cooking school, cook it till it's done! And while the fritatta is finishing, I make a second cuppa. This took another 8 minutes or so. Then I like to remove it immediately from the pan (careful, it's hot) and place it on a rack to prevent steam from forming...

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And here's what breakfast looked like today...

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It's a rather more complicated breakfast than I usually eat, but I'd been up for 3 hours, so it was well deserved :smile: .
Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
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#93 weinoo

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 08:03 AM

Can anyone go to Cocktail Kingdom, or only if accompanied by Someone Special? That place looks amazing. Please tell me the book is being safely stored. I'm completely and totally jealous.

That sandwich shop is simply gorgeous. I just don't like sandwiches, never did, so I don't really 'get it' as the sign says, but I'd still like to visit.

Mitch, my starter never looks that soupy, mine usually looks like partially risen dough and I'll use up to 40 or 50% starter. Whole different approach. Interesting.

Well, John is special, after all.

Check out the Cocktail Kingdom website. It's all available there.

For sure about the starters. I'd call this more of a mother - lol.
Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
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Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

#94 weinoo

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 08:13 AM

Wow. Just... wow. Greg has always been extremely friendly with information and stuff with me, but that's some seriously amazing stuff you're playing with there. Eager to get one of those swizzle sticks soon.


Greg did mention that he hopes to be able to display much more of this stuff when they move into their new digs. He's a serious collector - we were salivating.

Here's my bounty from yesterday's visit...

IMG_1050_1_1.JPG
A few bitters, including the Dandelion & Burdock bitters from our eGullet member evo-lution and Xocolatl Mole bitters from eGullet member BittermensAG. Of course, there are the new Wormwood Bitters from Cocktail Kingdom itself.

Oh, and that jigger. It's a 3/4 oz. backed with 1/2 oz. which is marked inside with a 1/4 oz. line. Pretty cool.
Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
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Tasty Travails - My Blog
My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs
Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

#95 johnder

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 08:43 AM


Can anyone go to Cocktail Kingdom, or only if accompanied by Someone Special? That place looks amazing. Please tell me the book is being safely stored. I'm completely and totally jealous.

That sandwich shop is simply gorgeous. I just don't like sandwiches, never did, so I don't really 'get it' as the sign says, but I'd still like to visit.

Mitch, my starter never looks that soupy, mine usually looks like partially risen dough and I'll use up to 40 or 50% starter. Whole different approach. Interesting.

Well, John is special, after all.

Check out the Cocktail Kingdom website. It's all available there.

For sure about the starters. I'd call this more of a mother - lol.


Given they have a small showroom up front, I think you can go in and browse the items for sale. All the bitters in that front area were open for people to taste. I will see if I can get donbert to chime in.

I was always told I was special by my parents, although I think they meant it in a different way. :-)
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#96 codheadred

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 08:54 AM

Loved the sandwich bar.. great pics

Dandelion and Burdock bitters - oooh what would you make with that? Ive had some Mawsons D&B cordial sat around for some time for when I am feeling nostalgic, but thats a temperance favourite from east lancs..

Steven

#97 johnder

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 09:09 AM

So I work for a subsidiary of Hearst Magazines, and while I am not in the actual Hearst Tower, I am a block away and often go there for lunch.

They have a pretty amazing cafeteria (as far as office cafeterias go) and it is subsidized by the company to a certain degree. Given a turkey sandwich runs you 7-8 bucks at the deli, spending 7 bucks for a thai fried fish sandwich isn't a bad idea. Also, this cafe is leaps and bound cleaner than most delis in the neighborhood.

If this crazy snow lets up I will venture over there for lunch today.

Typically they have a rotating "chef's station" where they feature different chefs. Also some of the magazine feature recipes they are going to be testing or running in a upcoming magazine. Also daily they have a rotating hot table featuring a different international food. For me this is the biggest hit or miss one. It is really hard to do authentic international food, much less for a building that has 1000 people in it.

Here is this weeks menu:
cafe57.jpg
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I feel sorry for people that don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day -- Dean Martin

#98 slkinsey

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 09:45 AM

Wow, so John and Mitch are kicking my ass in this thing.

Unfortunately, this is my life these days:

Yesterday I was at the SKDJ (soul-killing day job). Had to run errands during lunch and managed to scarf 6 pieces of mediocre Midtown deli sushi. I'm trying to lose weight (down to around 194 this morning from a high of around 220 a year ago, and I'd like to get down to 180 and see how that looks), so I really only eat one meal each day. Lunch usually has more the character of a snack.

So, after the SKDJ I ran downtown to Jeffrey's Meat Market to pick up a meat order. Brought home six chickens, two bone-in strip steaks and a couple racks of lamb. Cost around 80 bucks. Later this week I'll go back down and pick up a case of duck legs.

Train back to the northern reaches of the Upper West Side where I had to pick up two gigantic bags of laundry and some dry cleaning, or else Mrs. slkinsey and I would have had to wear barrels today. Schlepped all that home together.

Stashed the meat in the refrigerator, put away the laundry. Then it was time to practice. Spent an hour on "La vita è inferno all'infelice . . . O tu che in seno agli angeli" (which goes a little something like this). By the time that was over, it was getting on to 9 PM and I was exhausted. Didn't have it in me to break down a half-dozen chickens and take pictures. Three Old Fashioneds later, and Mrs. slkinsey and I were in bed asleep. Not a very exciting culinary day, I know. But fear not, we're going to take pictures of the chicken prep today and I'll discuss my reasoning behind why I'm doing what I'm doing.


Meanwhile, I'm back at the SKDJ. The coffee here is execrable, to say the least, and drinking too much coffee isn't great for my stomach anyway. But I do like caffeine! And it's important to keep myself well-hydrated and my instrument well-lubricated if I'm going to be using it later on in the day. So this is my liquid caffeine delivery system of choice for the moment:

photo.JPG
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#99 weinoo

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 10:20 AM

I'm trying to lose weight (down to around 194 this morning from a high of around 220 a year ago, and I'd like to get down to 180 and see how that looks), so I really only eat one meal each day. Lunch usually has more the character of a snack.

So, after the SKDJ I ran downtown to Jeffrey's Meat Market to pick up a meat order.

Wow, slkinsey, that's an amazing accomplishment on the weight loss. Will we still recognize you tonight?

Jeffrey's Meat Market is where I do some shopping as well. It's located inside here, on the corner of Essex and Delancey Streets...

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More on the Essex Street Market later. Oh, and here's what the starter looked like this morning, after 2 feedings...

Starter After 2 Feeds.JPG
Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
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Tasty Travails - My Blog
My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs
Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

#100 johnder

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 10:27 AM

So I am going to go on a bit of a photo journey now. Keeping with the cocktail theme, I will go through the liquor at home, then into the requisite kitchen/pantry/fridge shots.

First, a small butler table in the dining room that contains some "more used" spirits, mixing glasses and a whole cupboard full of antique and new glassware.

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Next, the main liquor storage area. In the front room there are a series of bookcases that hold mostly cookbooks and booze. 70% of the booze is stored here, 20% in another cabinet and the remainder around the house or in the basement. I would imagine that if I had to count I probably have 120-150 bottles of booze not including wine scattered around the house. One of the things you find is working as a bartender and running the back of house at programs like Tales of the Cocktail you come across copious amount of sample and free booze. If it was easier to fly with liquids, I probably wouldn't have room for clothes in the house.

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The other cabinet is where I keep mostly brown rarer stuff. Including 3 years of Red Hook Rye and a vertical of George T Stagg for the last 5 years.

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Lastly, segway into the kitchen, one of my cabinets basically has a ton of bitters and syrups in it.

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Can you tell I like Del Maguey?
:rolleyes:
John Deragon

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I feel sorry for people that don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day -- Dean Martin

#101 johnder

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 10:49 AM

Now onto the actual kitchen. It is still the same layout as the original blog showed. A few layout changes in the drawers and the addtion of the butcher block in the middle. A family friend was about to throw away this block when I happily took it off their hands. It is rock maple, end grain and weighs about 150 pounds. It is a beast. I love it.

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Required fridge shots ....

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One of the best things about this kitchen (aside from my beloved stove) is this Kraftmaid pantry unit. It just allows for so much storage, and at a glance allows you to find what you need.

It also caught the attention of Otis who is always underfoot in the kitchen.

I try to keep things hyper organized so I can quickly at a glance determine what I have and what I need to buy on my weekly shopping trips. The front storage units are arranged by baking (top left), Asian foods, honey/syrups, Mexican/hot sauce, tuna, pickles, etc. Then Salt and misc.

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Up above, it is dry goods, flours, chiles, chips.

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Right side is some bulk spices.

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In the back left, oils, pasta, tomatoes.

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Back right, more Asian ingredients, nuts, grains in hyper organized fashion.

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Vinegars, syrups.

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Now onto the drawers. One of the things I wanted when designing this kitchen was a lot of drawers for storage. I have almost 14 drawers, but would love even more.

(continued...)
John Deragon

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I feel sorry for people that don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day -- Dean Martin

#102 johnder

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 10:58 AM

Lastly -- all the odds and ends.

I try not to have anything I really don't use, but I am sure you will spot a few things that are a bit odd and could fall into that category.

I try to organize them by type; all baking things in one area, bartools another but there are some items that are just hard to classify.

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For spices, I typically go to one of the indian spice shops on in the East Village and buy a scoop or two of spices when I run low. These are paint jars I pick up from the art supply store. The lids have a rubber seal on the top and keep the spices pretty fresh. That combined with them living in a dark drawer gives them a pretty good shelf life. They are organized alphabetically of course. :biggrin:

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I feel sorry for people that don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day -- Dean Martin

#103 weinoo

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 11:05 AM

Of course, any time you go to John's house and try to find anything...
Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
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Tasty Travails - My Blog
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Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

#104 slkinsey

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 11:12 AM

Considering that John's kitchen has approximately half as many square feet as my entire apartment, my "organization" is considerably more haphazard.
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#105 weinoo

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 11:15 AM

I prefer to pick up every jar and look at what's inside rather than label them.
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Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
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My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs
Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

#106 weinoo

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 11:16 AM

Considering that John's kitchen has approximately half as many square feet as my entire apartment, my "organization" is considerably more haphazard.

No complaining. You have a "big" apartment by NYC standards :smile: .
Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
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#107 johnder

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 11:51 AM


Considering that John's kitchen has approximately half as many square feet as my entire apartment, my "organization" is considerably more haphazard.

No complaining. You have a "big" apartment by NYC standards :smile: .


Yah, both of you shouldn't complain. I was in a kitchen a few years ago where you could either a) stand in the kitchen. b) open the 4 burner oven door or c) open the fridge. You could only do one at a time, so you needed to pick. When you actually opened the fridge you had to stand outside the kitchen to look into it.

There was about strip of workspace that was about 4 inches wide and 24 inches deep.
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I feel sorry for people that don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day -- Dean Martin

#108 Shelby

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 11:51 AM

I prefer to pick up every jar and look at what's inside rather than label them.

:laugh: :laugh: :laugh:

#109 judiu

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 11:55 AM

Lastly -- all the odds and ends.

I try not to have anything I really don't use, but I am sure you will spot a few things that are a bit odd and could fall into that category.

I try to organize them by type; all baking things in one area, bartools another but there are some items that are just hard to classify.

drawer2.JPG

drawer3.JPG

For spices, I typically go to one of the indian spice shops on in the East Village and buy a scoop or two of spices when I run low. These are paint jars I pick up from the art supply store. The lids have a rubber seal on the top and keep the spices pretty fresh. That combined with them living in a dark drawer gives them a pretty good shelf life. They are organized alphabetically of course. :biggrin:

drawer4.JPG

drawer5.JPG

drawer6.JPG

drawer7.JPG


drawer1.JPG
OK, I give up! What does the little black metallic guy, just under the garlic press, do? :wacko: Almost looks like an hors d'ovre server, but the toothpick holes are too close together! :raz:
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#110 johnder

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 12:33 PM

haha, weinoo actually gave that to me. It is a toothpick holder. You put clean toothpicks it and people would grab one to eat olives or the like.
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--
I feel sorry for people that don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day -- Dean Martin

#111 slkinsey

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 12:59 PM

More unglorious eating on my part. Today's lunch was with Mrs. slkinsey in Midtown East at this place:

photo1.JPG

My foodie cred had kept me away from this chain for several years. I have a constitutional aversion to eating from any kind of chain while in New York City, because I always figure I can do better for a lower price at someplace local. And I can. The problem is that I don't need to be eating a tuna salad sandwich that weighs a pound. One of the nice things about Prêt a Manger is that they list the caloric values for everything on the menu. Mrs. slkinsey introduced me to their spicy shrimp & cilantro wrap which is plenty filling and a ridiculously low 290 calories. With a 50 calorie serving of miso soup, I'm out of there for 340 calories. Not bad. Now I have plenty of calories left for cocktails tonight.

photo2.JPG
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#112 weinoo

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 01:34 PM

More unglorious eating on my part. Today's lunch was with Mrs. slkinsey in Midtown East at this place:

photo1.JPG

My foodie cred had kept me away from this chain for several years. I have a constitutional aversion to eating from any kind of chain while in New York City, because I always figure I can do better for a lower price at someplace local. And I can. The problem is that I don't need to be eating a tuna salad sandwich that weighs a pound. One of the nice things about Prêt a Manger is that they list the caloric values for everything on the menu. Mrs. slkinsey introduced me to their spicy shrimp & cilantro wrap which is plenty filling and a ridiculously low 290 calories. With a 50 calorie serving of miso soup, I'm out of there for 340 calories. Not bad. Now I have plenty of calories left for cocktails tonight.

photo2.JPG


And the other thing is, their sandwiches are good. And reasonable. One of the best "fast food" chains, in my opinion.
Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
mweinstein@eGstaff.org
Tasty Travails - My Blog
My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs
Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

#113 johnder

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 01:48 PM

So I opted for the "international" food today at the cafe. As you can see this was a mildly-busy day. Behind me is the hot line that you can get pizzas, burgers and such from.

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I got the rice, some of the pork and the chicken, along with the papaya slaw. They also had on the cold salad bar some potato and corn salad and grilled zucchini.

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Back at my desk. Total cost of this was about 6.25. Considering the amount of food it is a pretty good deal.

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(sorry about the quality of the pics, I forgot my camera back at the desk so these are with the iphone)
John Deragon

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--
I feel sorry for people that don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day -- Dean Martin

#114 weinoo

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 02:01 PM

I wanted to give you a partial tour of my neighborhood, the lower east side with Chinatown rising.

A block from my apartment, you come upon this in front of a Chinese market. It's over 6 feet tall. They built it right after Christmas, and it has been there since...

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In the background, you can see my building. Well, it's a sister of my building; there are 4 buildings in the complex and they all look the same. 1720 apartments...

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Now, I don't think there is anything that can describe my neighborhood better than this...

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That's the fried chicken joint, next to the Chinese take-out place, next to Lamar's Bagel. I think I might have had a jewish uncle named Lamar, I just have to check.

So, walking southwest this time, instead of northeast like yesterday, here's a bit of what you see. Need a chair for your restaurant?

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An old synagogue/school, still in use today...

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Market...

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Sellers under the Manhattan Bridge...

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Mall entrance under bridge...lots of food stuff inside, but I don't eat there...

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Catherine St. meat market. I do shop here and I picked up a couple of packages of duck legs today...

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Then, I got hungry, so I stopped in here, someplace I hadn't eaten before...

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I love the menu, under glass. Fancy...

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I had the 3 roast meats over rice. Came with soup. I had roast pork, roast duck and roast chicken for $5.25...

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And then walked home. Past this...

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And this...

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Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
mweinstein@eGstaff.org
Tasty Travails - My Blog
My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs
Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

#115 Chris Amirault

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 02:04 PM

John, what do you use your Suze for?

BTW, feel free to unload any of that Del Maguey cluttering up your organizational perfection on me.
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#116 weinoo

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 02:05 PM

John, what do you use your Suze for?

BTW, feel free to unload any of that Del Maguey cluttering up your organizational perfection on me.

Hey, you gotta get in line for the Del.
Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
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Tasty Travails - My Blog
My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs
Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

#117 johnder

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 02:11 PM

John, what do you use your Suze for?

BTW, feel free to unload any of that Del Maguey cluttering up your organizational perfection on me.


"White Negroni" is always pretty awesome.

Equal parts gin, lillet blanc and suze.

I also really like it on the rocks with soda splash and a orange flag.
John Deragon

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--
I feel sorry for people that don't drink. When they wake up in the morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day -- Dean Martin

#118 weinoo

weinoo
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Posted 25 January 2011 - 04:20 PM

A quick tour of most of my cookbook collection. A lot of it is in no discernible order, but I know where almost everything is :wink: .

Sadly, I don't have enough room in our apartment to have every book I own on the shelves.

This is my Spanish, French and Mediterranean section...

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Then Italian...

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James Beard and baking...

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Asian, Latin and Jewish...

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Restaurant books, The Good Cook series and others...

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Assorted...

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Assorted...

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Assorted...

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Assorted including cocktail books...

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There's also stuff on every table, under every table, in back closets. Do not call that show called Hoarders, please.

Oh, I missed a shelf with the Time Life Foods of the World series. Great books, btw.
Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
mweinstein@eGstaff.org
Tasty Travails - My Blog
My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs
Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

#119 weinoo

weinoo
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Posted 25 January 2011 - 04:24 PM

So I am off to meet johnder and slkinsey at Pegu Club. Plans slightly changed since I want to get home in time to watch the State of the Union address tonight and since we're being a little lazier than we thought we would all be.
Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"
mweinstein@eGstaff.org
Tasty Travails - My Blog
My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs
Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

#120 heidih

heidih
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Posted 25 January 2011 - 05:14 PM

Oh, I missed a shelf with the Time Life Foods of the World series. Great books, btw.


I can't say enough good things about that series- dear to my heart :wub:





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