Just some notes about places I’ve been before:

Flaming dishes

Ravenous is good as always, though I think I will have to say that although it’s traditional, the paper cone thing is not the greatest idea ever.  Fries on a plate:  hot, crisp and delicious.  Small order of fries in a tiny paper cone:  hot, crisp and delicious.  Large order of fries in a large cone:  everlasting volcanic heat pouring out of the top of the cone, transforming the lovely frites into soggy steamed potatoes and necessitating the use of a popsicle stick/cocktail fork hybrid to retrieve them without searing skin off of the hands.  I guess it would be a pleasant-smelling way of keeping warm in the winter, though.  And though I didn’t have them that way, aren’t they traditionally eaten with the mayonnaise poured on top of the fries?  I really don’t know how you could do that with a foodstuff so hot without completely breaking down a sauce, unless that’s the point?  Do the Belgies like a broken oil/egg/lemon chunky sludge dripping down into their potato sticks?

Anyway, with strategic portion-limiting resulting in truly excellent fries, my meals there have continued to be quite pleasant.  The most recent one was billed as their version of Truman Capote’s favorite meal.  While tucking into the delicious blend of chicken, potatoes and herbs, I kept wondering “am I supposed to know what Truman Capote’s favorite meal was?”  And then, I know that some peoples’ favorite meals are quite famous, but for the life of me I can’t recall any of them.  Trying to link famous people and food (other than chefs) all I can come up with is Proust and the madelines (which supposedly aren’t madelines at all) and Salieri’s sweet tooth (and even that isn’t a specific dish.)  And when I think about it, most dishes named after someone (Pizza Margherita, Chicken Tetrazzini, etc) are named in their honor, not because the person in question liked the dish (or necessarily even tried it.)

 

More about pizza

There are pizza places everywhere here.  In every shopping center, almost on every corner.  And yet almost all of them range in quality from “meh” to “disappointing.”  However, I have tried a couple that were very good.  The first was back at The Wheatfields, which isn’t much of a surprise, since almost everything there is great.  It was their special – a Neapolitan style crust with pears, gorgonzola, and a balsamic drizzle.  Yum.  And wonderfully convenient for me, but the pizzeria closest to me also happens to be the best one I’ve found out of the fifteen or so that I’ve tried since I’ve been here.  Unfortunately they don’t have a web page, but it’s called Christina’s, and while looking it up online I discovered that it’s in Ganesvoort.  New York?  Can you explain to me wtf is up with your town boundaries?  And what town do I actually live in?  My address is in one, everyone else tells me that I live in another, but apparently I can spit into a third. 

 

About a sandwich

I haven’t reviewed this place yet, because the review I want to do necessitates a trip to a competing establishment, but my most recent wouldn’t fit into the review that I want to do, so here it is:

http://irishtimessaratoga.com/

On the advice from the bartender, who listed it as one of three reasons he started working there, I tried their Ruben sandwich.  It’s good.  I can’t claim that it’s as good as I make at home, but it does have one major similarity:  it uses actual corned beef.  It’s not deli corned beef, but the corned beef that they have sitting right there on the menu, alongside cabbage and potatoes.  In fact, eating the sandwich makes me want to order their corned beef and cabbage.  As a corned beef sandwich it’s absolutely delicious, but as a Ruben… I’m about to commit a guy-heresy, but here it is:  there’s too much corned beef.  Don’t get me wrong, in most cases, there’s no such thing as too much corned beef.  But a Ruben sandwich isn’t about just the corned beef, it’s about all the strong flavored ingredients and stacking them against each other in a way that the corned beef, and the rye, and the sauerkraut, and the emmantaler all can hold their own and support the others.  It’s about proportion.  So actually, maybe the problem isn’t so much that there was too much corned beef, but that there was too little of the other ingredients.  Then again, a properly-proportioned Ruben that used as much meat as was used in this one couldn’t have been fit into your mouth as a sandwich, but would have needed a knife and fork.  Which really isn’t a bad idea…

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