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Billy D

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Everything posted by Billy D

  1. What about people who work in private homes? As I wrote in my previous post I smoke and I have a live in house keeper, if the ban is past then should it not extend to protect those who work in private homes, cars, yachts or jets?
  2. Most memorable is by far the Super Club; there is nothing else like it.
  3. Yes- I work for a french co. and most of my co-workers smoke; I do smoke in my office at night and when those who dislike it are not around.
  4. I have been reading a lot about this issue and I am ready to express my opinion. I am an occasional smoker that does not mind having to step outside for a smoke. I agree that in a fine dining environment a smoker can hinder other peoples experience and that is not fair. As well there are the typical pubs, bars and nightclubs where smoking seems appropriate. My problem with this bill is that I feel like Bloomberg is imposing his moralistic views on me, trying to be my father and he is covering it up by saying he is protecting the workers. Bull Shit I say. In terms of pollution there are far worse environments to work in; a street vendor inhales a lot more carbon monoxide from vehicle exhaust than a bartender, or how about miners or chemical plant workers etc. Additionally, what about the city's private clubs (Grand Havana and the like) where smoking is the norm or private homes where one may have a house keeper, driver etc.; this ban does not extend to these private clubs or homes. I smoke in my home and I have a live in house keeper, should this ban prohibit me from smoking in my own home because I am exposing my help to second hand smoke? If my house keeper does not like the smoke she can go work for Bloomberg. This is a very dangerous world we live in evidenced by 9/11; anyone could die at any time. Let business owners decide if they want to permit smoking or not, let consumers decide which establishments they will patronize and let workers decide what kind of environment they want to work in.
  5. Tommy, how do you define a rip off? I have explained that I look at value not price; what's your criterion?
  6. "It seems clear to me that (possibly with rare exceptions), fine dining restauranteurs are not in it for the money." Jordyn - Then why? People like Drew N., Danny M., Phil S., Bob G., etc. are not spining thier wheels for nothing.
  7. It is true that it is far more difficult and expensive and thus more risky to operate a fine dining restaurant vs. a quick serve or casual restaurant. As well, the % return might be less; a typical quick serve concept nets approx 20% a casual dining concept more like 12% and many fine dining concept as little as 6%. But at the same time, a great quick serve concept might gross $3M per year for a net of $600k where a high end fine dining concept might gross $15M for a net of $900k. At the end of the year I would rather put $900k in the bank, wouldn't you? Although there are much higher operating/pre-opening costs involved if you are going to compare two successful restraints of different concepts I would prefer to serve fewer people and make more money. A very successful NY restaurateur once told me that he would rather serve 10 people at $1000 per head than 1000 people at $10 per head; me too.
  8. If I remember correctly I paid $2.50 for a hot dog with mustard; they may have offered the other condiments but no cucumber spear with celery seed sprinkled on top.
  9. Cabrales- I sampled the hot dog last year and as I remember it, the hot dog was good; on par with or even a bit better than the standard dirty water dog and served with a smile. Still at $2 more than Gray's or $1.25 more than the dirty water dog it is a rip. I understand that Grays does huge volume and the dirty water carts don't use the garlic, coriander seeds, onions and bay leaves. I would also imagine that the cart is more expensive for Danny to operate than the standard dirty water carts; paid smiling labor vs. commissioned sales people, higher rent for overnight storage of cart (i guess he keeps it at EMP),etc. But a simple marketing principle dictates if you can't give the consumer what he/she wants at the price he/she wants it for then don't offer it. Clearly, if the cart still operates people are patronizing it and I hope getting what they want. For me, I still feel that $2.50 for a Hot Dog from a street vendor is ridiculous.
  10. Maybe I am cheap but I am interested in value not price. To me a bottle of 1996 Petrus for $1100.00 is a great deal but a hot dog prepared in hot water with garlic, onions, coriander seeds and bay leaves for $2 more than a Grays Papaya is a rip off. Wilfrid- Are you suggesting that Danny does not make a ton of money in the F&B industry? Maybe he is doing it because he feels that New Yorkers deserve a break in the form of subsidized dining. We should consider him a philanthropist.
  11. Billy D

    Wines to Cellar

    Schonfeld - The answers you are getting seem a bit generic and some of the recs. may already be hard to find. I am not sure what style wines you enjoy but I assume, since you want to lay them down for a long time, you like big tannic reds. This being the case there are many 2000 and 2001 2nd growth Bordeauxs that can be found at a good value and will continue to improve over the next 10-25 years (Pichon Lalande; Calon Segur; Lagrange; Leoville Barton; De Fieuzal; Bourgneuf; Clos L'elise). I suggest you pick up Robert Parkers guide to buying wine; it contains the best information.
  12. Billy D


    I have read a few threads on the steak topic as well as South American beef vs. the North American. I love beef and I have spent a fair amount of time eating in South America. My findings reveal that personal taste as always dictates ones perception of "the best". Some say, Kobe is the best others South American (Argentine, Venezuelan, Colombian), others Swiss and others North American. With out bias I think that they all have personalities of their own and are all great. I find that Kobe is perfectly marbleized and has great texture but can be a bit bland. I love the South American beef because it is essentially free range cattle, no hormones, no genetically engineered food, no forced feeding, etc. and it has a lot more flavor similar to game meats. I have found the Swiss beef to have the fat content of the North American variety but more flavor from the grass diet. North American beef has a great fat content but if not aged properly can be a bit bland. Any way, I know Anil’s preference (I too find Argentine women beautiful) but I wonder if anyone else has an opinion or preference.
  13. This cart is a rip off. The only thing that makes this cart better than any other is that the attendant is often nice. In this city who wants to pay extra for a hot dog served with a smile?
  14. After a night of bong hits, snorting caviar and drinking tequilla I would think that the only cure would be a snort of ajax followed by a cigarette and a shot of cough syrup. Or you might want to try a rare cheeseburger and a coke.
  15. Billy D

    Wine events in NY

    Vinexpo will be at the Javits in the end of Oct.
  16. I never enjoyed the Russian Tea Room, I always felt that it was a rip off and a tourist trap. I agree with Jordan on two points: 1) RTR would not be closing if Mr. Leroy were still alive (he would have tweaked the business plan and come up with new investors); 2) It will probably be taken over by a corporate or even worse public restaurant group.
  17. Nathan's and Papaya King in NY and although I love a dog I can't say that I have done much research out-side of NY. The one place that I found had the most interesting Perro Caliente was in Venezuela. There is a sort of street food culture built around Perros, Arepas, Hamburgesas. The typical Perro is a thin light colored sausage served on a steamed white bread bun and topped with everything and the kitchen sink, shredded cabbage, raw onions, chopped tomato, mustard, hot sauce, garlic sauce, crushed potato chips and grated parmesan-like cheese. Although you don't really taste the sausage (maybe a good thing) I loved them.
  18. Billy D

    Second -- Bacon

    Thin sliced - "Smushy-Crisp" Thick Cut - Char Broiled like Peter Lugar
  19. Cigars and Rum are a classic Latino combination, I also like a chewy glass of Cab.
  20. I agree that NYC tap water tastes good but the purity does frighten me too. I like Canada Dry Club Soda (and others) but I don't like so many bubbles with food. When eating I prefer Badoit which is very hard to find in the states. (Side note: Why is Badoit so hard to find?) At home I like Poland Spring or Great Bear.
  21. Billy D


    Didier Virot, formerly Chef de Cuisine at restaurant Jean Georges and then Exec. Chef at his own place Virot which closed post Sept. 11 and is reopening as Britney's place. I worked with Didier and I think he is incredibly talented. Virot was very good but the location was terrible and the concept was a bit too pretentious. I think that aix should be more casual and Didier's food is always tops. I wish him the best of luck and I look forward to eating his fare once again.
  22. Try Blanton's its my favorite.
  23. Any Cordial (the more off the beaten track the better) or a sweet wine/sparkling wine. For real good friends I will go to Barney's and pick up something from the house wares dept. i.e. a corkscrew, shot glasses, napkin rings, vase, place mats, ice tongs, etc.
  24. I forgot the PMC (Perrier, Menth, Citron); I was visiting a friend in Greece a few years ago and this drink was all the rage. In a highball glass add 1-2oz. citron vodka, add 3-4 sprigs of mint (broken up) pour in the Perrier and enjoy. Try it on a hot afternoon sitting by the beach, pool or on your yacht (ha ha ha).
  25. The summer is here and I am wondering what egulleters like to drink. For me, I like a cold beer; a crisp, dry white wine; a dry rose wine; mojitos; caiparinhas; white sangria; dry sherry and margaritas.
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