Its one in the morning. I'm sitting on a train on my way back to poughkeepsie. And Alex, my roommate from last year is snoring with his head in my lap. The little guy just couldn't keep up. All I can think of right now is what I'm going to do on my next visit. Today, was one of the best.
Tragically, for some reason, all of the pictures I took in the city today are no longer on my phone. Why? I couldn't tell you. I'm kind of pissed.
My day started at eleven when I woke up. I showered, woke up Alex, the only person I could get to go to the city with me. We set out to catch the 2 40 train, were in the city by 4.
I forgot the little things that I missed about the city. I missed subway music. But sure enough the first subwat we took there was a fat guy with an accordian bellowing Christmas music. Our first stop was the adidas store. Alex is a bit of a nerd and had to buy the some new special edition adidas star wars apparel. It was sold out... Then I took the reigns and it became a trip worthy of the title fat ass adventure. We made our customary stop at the same little chinese shop for pork buns. Its at the corner of Canal and Baxter in Chinatown. Whole sides of roast pork and whole roast ducks hang in the window. The Pork buns themselves, doughy baked yeast rolls with a honey glaze, filled with roast pork in a sweet sauce. They are possibly my favorite thing in the whole world. Without a doubt, they are one of my favorite things on the face of the Earth.
At six o'clock we walked into "pho grand". Its a chef hangout with pho, a vietnamese beef noodle soup that I love with all my heart. We both ordered large bowls of pho with beef round, brisket, tripe (stomach), and soft tendon. It was glorious. I sat there, tchopstix in one hand, chinese soup spooon in the other, grinning as I alternated between beefy noodle slurps, and sips of spicy anise tinged broth. The contrast of the hot busy room, the cold weather outside. My lips stung as I slurped the steaming hot noodles, but I kept eating. My mouth went numb because of the spice, the anise, and a touch of sezchuan peppercorn. When we left, I was so happy that I literally couldn't help but cross one of the busiest streets in New York, buddy the elf style. I hopped with two feet across a busy intersection making surte to only step on the white lines.
Our next stop was milk bar. A hip dessert spot with four daily soft serve flavors and a bunch of other goodies. We bought a sampler of the fous ice creams: donut, red velvet cake, horchata, and cereal milk. For the cereal milk they soak frosted flakes in milk, strain them off, and then use the milk for soft serve. It literally tastes like you're slurping the milk after you eat a bowl of cereal. Greatest ice cream in the world. We also had a piece of "crack pie". A gooey butter pie with a toasted oat crust.... To die for.
Our next stop was "artichoke". There I had the single greatest slice of pizza I've ever had in my life. It was a small shack. There were no seats (just like at all the places I love) and Alex and I split a slice of artichoke pizza. It was a hot slice of pizza, with a cream suace base, smothered with cheese and artichoke hearts. To die for. The single greatest vegetarian thing I've ever had in my life.
Our next and final stop, the whole goal of our journey. Yakitori totto. A little joint just south of central park. For those of you not in the know, yakitori is a japanese dining style in which skewers of protien, predominately chicken, are grilled over coals and served hot to diners. I had been craving yakitori ever since ed the fish cook at L'Etoile told me about his trip to San Francisco. You order by the partn and each skewer is about three bucks. Alex and I each had a japanese beer, and we ordered several skewers. I ordered a skewer of chicken skin, one of chicken necks, one chicken heart, one berkshire pork neck, one berkshire pork belly with ponzu and scallions, and to finish it off, one more skewer of crispy chicken skin for dessert.
My friend Mary's older sister Nicola just got a job working for Coach, the handbag company, in New York. She just moved in two days ago, so we stopped by her place to say hello. Turns out she lives in Times Square... Literally, IN times Square. Her building is right next to M&M world. We went up to her apartment, which has a full wall sized window looking over Times Square. Its a crazy apartment, and we stayed there until like 11 30: then it was time to leave to catch our train to Poughkeepsie.
And as I sat on the train, it hit me. If everything goes according to plan, this whole city, in eight month's time, will become my personal playground. Whenever I'm not working, or sleeping, I'll be out, taking in the sights and shoving everything edible into my face. The thought is so thrilling, that I am seriously considering dropping all my plans for every weekend I'll be at school, and going to the city, to just soak it up.
Visit... if you wish... you'll eat better than you ever have in you ever have in your entire life... trust me. You won't regret a second of it either. I promise
Until then... Keep it real.