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food bars drinks

 

Dean Ween's Sunday Sauce

Food / WEEN - 12.1.11

Alright, so not sure why this makes me think of the holiday season but we figured this would be a good post. A few years back Dean Ween posted his recipe for his Sunday Sauce on the Ween website and everyone seemed to love it, so has left it permanently up on this site: http://www.chocodog.com/chocodog/sauce2.htm

Everything below comes from Dean Ween and is not our own - pics, etc. Enjoy. Oh and thanks to Deaner, he treats his fans like none other

dean weens sunday sauce stop the weaknessI have really mixed feelings about posting this because there’s an unspoken code in my family regarding recipes. Basically, you never tell anyone the whole truth when it comes to cooking because the best meals are improvised and you couldn’t tell it on paper anyway. You have to adjust on the fly, using your senses—your eyes, your nose, your experience, and most importantly your mouth. If it looks and tastes fucked up then it is fucked up. Basically, if you don’t know what good food tastes like, you will be throwing darts when you try and cook. This recipe is for your basic “Sunday sauce”, it takes a whole Sunday afternoon to cook it. I’m a proud Italian-American and if I ate macaroni and meatballs 3 times a week I would die fat and happy, but satisfied. When given the choice I will always eat Italian food before anything else. My good friend Jim Woolsey says it the best, “the French talk about food but the Italians know how to eat.” If you’ve ever been to Italy then you know what I’m talkin’ about. Italian/American cooking is it’s own thing, different than the food in Italy, but I’m a bastard and I can only tell you what I grew up with. I come from a large Italian family in New Jersey and they all claim that I make the best macaroni and meatballs and I’m gonna show you how to do it right here. This was taught to me by all my relatives but I’ve added my own tasters along the way; I’ve cooked this meal one hundred times for my family and it’s always what I crave when I’m truly hungry. This is a step by step pictorial guide that I made on 12/16/07 for my wife, son, and parents. I cook for my folks and my sisters once a month and it’s the most rewarding thing in the world. All the little things I mention here are important for a successful meal, the difference between a great dinner and a passable one, so don’t skip the little shit in this tutorial and it will reward you in the end.

Macaroni

Pasta is pasta right? WRONG! I like spaghetti and clams. I don’t eat spaghetti with meatballs. I like tortellini Bolognese but I like Rigatoni with Carbonara sauce. Marinara sauce is something that I’ll only eat on mussels. I like fusili with garlic and oil. There’s a reason that pasta comes in so many shapes, and it’s not to accommodate your fork or for your kid to play with. When it comes to the most standard meal (pasta and meatballs) I will only eat macaroni. That’s penne rigate or rigatoni by my definition. If I cook spaghetti it’s usually with shredded chicken or seafood or (my fave of all) white clam sauce. This is about my regular family Sunday meal though, which from heretofore-unce on will be called macaroni with meatballs. Pencil points we call them.

Time

Time is a bitch, it’s really true. You can’t make this meal in less than 4 hours. If you do it enough you will learn how to force it in 3 hours, but no less. If you try and tell lies or rush this then it won’t taste as good. Good food takes time, and it’s not just a cliché. Relax and enjoy the experience, get drunk on wine while you’re cooking—it’s acceptable when you cook this.

Your ingredients

I’m already tired of typing this. You’re gonna fuck this up anyway. You have to go to the supermarket and buy the following: (this recipe is designed for 7 people so adjust accordingly, freeze the sauce and meatballs you don’t eat for another day)

4 lbs of ground beef/veal/pork (if you’re lucky enough to have a butcher in your hometown have him grind it from cutlets, if not then buy it in the plastic packs) some pork chops (bone in) 2 lbs. of penne rigate 1 gigantic yellow onion 1 head of garlic 1 fresh batch of basil 1 batch Fresh parsley An egg 1 long ring of hot Italian sausage 4 slices of bread ( I use any kind of white bread) Milk pecorino/romano cheese (don’t skip on this one, buy the best cheese you can get and either grate it or spend extra for the good shit already grated) extra virgin olive oil dry white wine (I just use holland house cooking wine, available anywhere) 3 big (29 oz.) cans of tomato sauce (depending on what texture you like—I like regular, already pureed sauce for this recipe) 4 bottles of wine. A loaf of fresh Italian bread, and get some butter too.

deaner sunday sauce

Go Time Alright.

You have a big pile of groceries on the counter. It’s 1pm and dinner is at 6. Relax. Pour yourself a glass of red wine and commence drinking. Sharpen your knife, the big one. Dice the big onion into bits. Take 5 cloves of the garlic and dice that too. Chop the basil up, all of it. Put the beef/v/p/ into a big ass bowl and add salt, pepper, a little bit of oregano, ½ cup of the cheese, and one raw egg. Take 4 slices of the white bread and put it into a cereal bowl and fill it with milk. This is key. Bread crumbs are bullshit in meatballs, this is our substitute. This is what will make your meatballs excellent. Sautee ½ of your onion, ½ of your garlic, and one half of the basil in 2 tblsps of oil in a big pan, slowly. I mean really slowly. If you burn the garlic right here then all is lost. Throw the whole meal away and start over. You won’t fool anyone if you burn the garlic. Burnt garlic will be the only thing anyone tastes. Be cautious and go slow and low, medium low heat. When the onions are translucent then it’s ready, it might take 15 minutes but wait it out. When the onion/garlic/basil mix is finished sautéing, then dump it on the bowl of meat. Squeeze out the milk bread and put the wrung-out milk bread into the meat bowl too. Squeeze the milk bread gently so it relinquishes half of the absorbed milk. Go easy. This is what it’ll look like out of focus:

 

deaner sauce meatballs

Now it’s time to get messy. Grind this shit together through your fingers. Mix and mash it up it up for 5 minutes, kneading it. Make sure that everything is blended together evenly. When it’s all done it will look something like this hopefully:

deaner meatballs

Now just wash your hands and set this bowl aside for the moment.

The Sauce (gravy, whatever)

Add another 2 tablespoons of olive oil to a large spaghetti pot and sautee the rest of your onions, garlic and basil, again, slow and low. Do not burn the garlic. When the onions are translucent, add the three cans of tomato sauce. For every can that you pour in the pot, go to the sink and fill up half the can with water and dump it in the pot, rinsing out the remaining sauce still in the can. This water is going to cook off over the next 3 hours as you will see. Remember that, 3 cans of tomato sauce, 1 ½ cans of water. Now sprinkle some oregano on the pot of sauce, and add a tablespoon of sugar, stir it a little, and simmer the sauce on medium low heat.

The Meat

meatballs deaner sunday sauce

Ok here we go. I like to brown my meatballs before putting them in the sauce, it greatly helps the texture and flavor of the end product, but it’s more time consuming and messy, but totally worth it. Pour an inch of oil in the bottom of your pan and turn the burner to medium high. Get that oil scorching hot. Shape the meatballs in your hand to whatever size you like, I like larger meatballs. Add them to the scorching hot pan, try and not let them touch one another. If the oil is hot they should brown on each side quickly. We are not trying to cook them here, it’s okay if they’re still undercooked in the middle, they will be cooking in the sauce for three hours. When each side is browned, remove the meatballs to some paper towels and add the next batch to your pan. I usually have to do this 4 times, 4 batches of meatballs. When you’re done, add your browned meatballs to the sauce.

deaner sauce porkchops

Pork chops

I always throw a couple of (bone in) pork chops in my Sunday sauce, they add a ton of flavor and they completely fall apart while cooking in the tomato sauce. Anyway, using the same oil you used for the meatballs, brown your pork chops, remove them from the pan and pat some of the oil off with a paper towel and then add them to the tomato sauce too. After this, cook the sausage and repeat the previous, add the sausage into the sauce.

Sausage

My father loves hot Italian sausage so I usually add a few pieces in there for him too. It too helps the flavor of the sauce.

Deglazing the pan

By now the bottom of your pan is filled with little bits of meatball, pork chop, sausage, onions, etc. put the empty oily pan back onto medium high heat and pour in some wine, enough to cover the bottom and then a little more. Smoke will come billowing out and all of the pieces that were stuck to the bottom will come off. Simmer this for a couple of minutes until the alcohol cooks off, you will be able to smell this. Now pour the brownish wine gravy into your sauce and stir it in.

dean ween sunday sauce stop the weakness

This is after 2 and a half hours of simmering, the pork chop has completely fallen off the bone and dinner is almost ready.

The hard work is now over. You are going to let your sauce simmer on low heat for the next three hours. Clean up the mess that you’ve created and get ready for the final phase. Over the next three hours your sauce is going to relinquish a lot of fat and oil, like tons of it. There is a lot of debate over this in my family, I personally skim 90 percent of it off. It is a constant job. Some people believe in stirring it back in for flavor. You will see what I mean. Like I said, I leave some and stir it back in, but not a whole lot.

deaner sunday sauce

This is what it will look like. Get the table ready and put out the wine and whatever else your guests like. We tend to eat simple, but tasteful meals. I usually put out a bunch of fruit and berries and olives and cheese.

berries

Dinnertime

Cook your pasta until it is al-dente, about 11 or 12 minutes. When it’s finished, drain it in a colander and then transfer it to a big serving plate. A large plate is better than a bowl for this. Grab a fistful of cheese and cover the pasta with it and then toss it a little, this will help the sauce adhere to the pasta. Now start spooning the tomato sauce over the pasta, stirring it in, covering the pasta. Don’t put too much sauce on it yet, let your guests decide how much they want, I just cover it enough to use as a starting point.

deaner cooking sauce

I like to put some meat around the outer ring of the serving plate, but take the whole pot of sauce and meat and put that on the table too. Let people decide how much sauce they like and let them hand pick what meatballs, sausage, pork they want. Last but not least, sprinkle the dish with parsley and a little more cheese for presentation. You made it.

deaner sunday sauce

This is what it should look like and it’s time to eat and drink! Make sure the cheese is on the table. MANGIA!

deaner with sauce at the end stop the weakness

Rosarito Fish Shack - New Place in Williamsburg - Really Really Unweak

Food/Bar - 8.17.11

rosartio in williamsburg stop the weaknessRosarito tequila bar in williamsburg brooklyn stop the weakness

If you are in Williamsburg a bunch you may have noticed the 2 new restaurants that went up on N7th and Wythe....well, it is a trick, those aren't 2 new places but rather one new place that looks like 2 places....and it is really fucking unweak.

food at rosarito in williamsburg brooklynSo one of the signs says it's a tequila bar and the place next door says it's a fish shack - since they aren't two separate places, the truth is this place is a mix of both - a Mexican seafood place, just like the Nirvana song. The food here is incredible. I had some seafood enchiladas the were the ill and my girlfriend had the tuna which was just as good. I can't wait to go back because everything on the menu looked incredible. I only wish I were more hungry because we didn't get into the raw bar, ceviches, tacos, and all the other shit they had to offer. For real, check this place out.

Oh, I do have one complaint - I love margaritas and our waiter, who was damn good by the way, sold me on some special of the night. The margaritas are $10 and not only was this one double the size (or supposed to be), it was a deal at $15. No for my complaint....it tasted pretty great but it was not large and did not have any booze in it. For a $15 drink I was hoping to get a little more.

Alright, I will be going back here soon and will do another review after that. Check this place out though if you like mexican and seafood.

Veronica Peoples With Food From Mamas - The Bar is Unweak but Don't Go for the Mama's

Food/Bar - 8.17.11

veronica peoples greenpoint brooklyn unweakSo I met up with a friend I hadn't seen in forever and we went to Veronica Peoples in Greenpoint which is linked up with Mamas in the East Village Monday through Friday from 6-9pm (I think). It is kind of weird because the bar and food are separate places, so you pay and order from different people/bills. The bar is great. Good beers and drinks selection....though if you want wine I think there was only one red and one white to choose from. Most importantly the layout is sweet for a bar. My pictures suck but inside has the perfect amount of dark cavelikeness and there is outside seating that is partially covered, which helped out as it was raining.....and you can smoke back there if that is your thing.

Veronica peoples greenpoint brooklyn unweak stop the weaknessNow for some problems...a big reason we went here was the food. We were across the street at Pencil Factory but we wanted to eat something and they only had a small food selection (sandwiches were all you could get I think). We heard that the place across the street wad tied in with Mamas which is southern food and known for being awesome. Anyway this part wasn't that great. They had 2 sandwiches and the same amount of sides and neither was made there. So we both got fried chicken sandwiches that were fried earlier that morning (if not the night before), lathered in manyo, wrapped in tinfoil and thrown in a fridge. Now had I the choice of getting no mayo on it, or, and this is a crazy request, had the chance of getting my fried chicken served hot...it probably would have been pretty sick. Now I am being a little rough and the sammy was good considering it was cold and had mayo on it which i completely despise and had to wipe off but what the fuck. The mac and cheese and homemade chips were damn good and yes the Mac and cheese was hot. I have never been to Mamas in the East Village and really want to go there where they do it up right because I am sure it is sweet.

Almost forgot - they had a DJ here that played awesome music. Not sure why I haven't been here before, but it would be a great place to go with a big group of people.

Sweetwater Cafe in Williamsburg - Cash Only but Unweak and Worth it

Food/Bar - 8.17.11

sweetwater cafe williamsburg brooklyn unweak stop the weaknessSweetwater - this place is really fucking sick. I hate places that are cash only and have not been here for that reason, but the other night I sucked it up and went. This is worth it all the way. Came out to $100 pre-tip for the 2 of us and that includes 4 drinks, a cheese plate, and 2 entrees.

We had wild mushroom cannelloni and scallops. The cannelloni was really unweak, pretty much perfect, and though I liked the scallops, I only had a bite and the complaint was that the dish was a little too buttery. I am a big fan of cheese plates and this was the best one I've had in Williamsburg except for maybe Blackbird. 5 different cheeses, walnuts, some fruit and good bread. The drinks were good too, margaritas on my side and some infused tequila was used. I forget what it was infused with and I really should know as I have had it before (it's not fruity or anything, smokey in fact), but it's good.

Now for the layout - this place has a great feel to it. Inside you have cool booths (where we sat due to rain) and it is dark but not too cavernous that it makes it hard to see the people you are with. The outdoor seating is out back and up a set of stairs so you can see up over the walls. I think part of it is covered too so the rain wouldn't have been a problem. Oh well you win and lose and this was a win regardless of where you are seated. If you don't like cash only spots (oh they takes Amex too) it is worth paying for this meal in cash. It could end up being a tad expensive if you drink a lot but for a nice restaurant it's not bad at all. The staff was very accommodating as well. All around awesome experience.

 

 

 

 

cannelloni at sweetwater cafe in williamsburg brooklyn unweakcheese plate at sweetwater cafe in williamsburg brooklyn unweak

Brooklyn Winery - Food is Surprisingly Unweak, So Unweakness All Around

Food/Bar - 7.26.11

outside seating at brooklyn winery unweak stop the weaknessI never expected anything out of this place except for wine and therefore haven't rushed over there. After going the other night, I wish I had made it earlier as the food was pretty incredible. We didn't really eat a meal and just stuck to appetizers but after one order of the ceviche, we had to go back for seconds (yes, though the picture looks like something was murdered in front us, it didn't taste like death). The other thing we got were scallops and they were equally as good. On top of all that there is a great outdoor space, making this spot perfect for the summer...and the indoor seating seems just as cool, so I am guessing it is a great place to hang out (with good food, libations and merriment) in the winter as well.

ceviche brooklyn winery unweak stop the weakness

scallops brooklyn winery stop the weakness

Chocolate Chip Cookies w/Oreos Inside - a Tad Gluttonous but Unweak

Food/Bar - 7.26.11

oreo stuff chocolate chip cookies unweak stop the weakness dot comSo we put this picture up on facebook and got a comment and some emails from readers asking what they were looking at....so the quick answer is an Oreo wrapped in a chocolate chip cookie. They might seem weird, gluttonous and/or gross but they aren't. My coworker brought some in that his wife made and we decided to try them out the other weekend. Here is where we (i.e. my girlfriend) got the recipe: http://www.beckybakes.net/2011/01/20/oreo-stuffed-chocolate-chip-cookies/

Maison Premiere - Pretty Expensive Raw Bar, but Unweak

Food/Bar - 7.18.11

maison premiere brooklyn williamsburg stop the weakness unweakWilliamsburg Restaurant - Alright, first off, this is a raw bar. It is an oyster/absinthe bar with about 30 different types of oysters and, well, probably a lot of absinthe but on a Sunday night we weren't looking to get too weird. I think mussels, shirmp, lobster and the king crab legs are the only cooked dishes, though there may be a few others. This place is mainly about its oysters, which I have never been that into, but my sister loves them, sampled 4 different kinds and thought they were incredible. For the 3 of us to split we got a lobster, an order of king crab legs (2 legs), 5 shirmp, 4 oysters, and then we each drank a Pimm's cup to drink. The bills was $150. When considering that you are eating lobster and king crab legs, that isn't too bad, but this was all for us to split, we only had one drink each and left kind of hungry. Again, lobster and king crab were the most expensive things on the menu so, oh well, I was happy with the meal.

maison premiere brooklyn williamsburg stop the weakness unweakSo this place is just opened early this year and I am not sure if the outdoor seating area is new as well or what. It is located On Bedford Ave between Grand and S1st. If you know where DuMont Burger is, it's a block up from that. The outdoor seating is pretty great here, though crowded. Our table was back in the corner and if you didn't set your drink down it would slide off the table into your lap.....as it did with my sister. Or maybe she just dropped her drink in her lap, who knows. Overall....drinks are great, you can order oysters, clams, mussels and shrimp by the piece, so it is a pretty perfect place to go for drinks and small things to eat. Probably not the best place to go for a full meal, but oh well, I am happy we went and recommend it to people.

Here is the website for more details: http://maisonpremiere.com/

Food @ Brooklyn Flea/Smorgesburg - Red Hook Lobster Pound - Real Unweak to Possibly Weakness Stopping

Food/Bar - 7.12.11

red hook lobster pound lobster roll unweak stop the weaknessI have to admit, I am getting a little sick of Brooklyn Flea being right near my apartment. Not to mention now with the Smorgesburg on Saturday, which is Basically an all food stand part of Brooklyn Flea, then the flea market on Sunday...it is annoying. The first weekend they did it, you walked up Kent Ave at the end of the day and the street was a wind tunnel of garbage...literally garbage flying all around you. It was disgusting. They have that under control, but what they can't really clean up the amount of people as that goes against good business I believe. Either way, if it were up to me, I would not move the flea market because of the food they have there and the Red Hook Lobster Pound is my new.....well, would be go to if I didn't struggle with adding 2 (or more) $16 lobster rolls to my weekend expenses. Seems a tad excessive, but it may happen as I can't help but eat Dough's doughnuts each weekend morning if I am in town (see the review here as they are the best doughnuts you will ever experience) and this may be the same. These lobster rolls are just straight delicious.

So....Red Hook's Lobster Pound. First a little story as why this name always makes me laugh - my father is horrible with names and always refers to things (mainly restaurants) by some bizarre hybrid of their actual name. For example, there is a place in my town called Cherry Street, which he refers to as Cherry Stones all the time, and the applicable one here is on Nantucket there is a bar/restaurant called the Lobster Trap that he always calls the Lobster Pound. We have always busted his balls about this, mostly asking what the fuck that even means, but...there you have it....Red Hook Lobster Pound....guess Lobster Pound isn't such an odd name. We will continue to bust his balls about this though, don't worry.

Now....back to the matter at hand. I do lobster rolls up with butter (CT style as referred to at the Lobster Pound) because mayo disgusts me. Oddly I will eat tuna melts (only with a little mano), no idea why, but anything else I can't go near. It's like lyposuctioned fat spread all over your food. I know some people find this thought to be pure ecstacy, but to me it is plain gross. Just picture those medical videos with the fat oozing through the tube and then at the other end is a Helmans jar waiting to be filled to the brim and shipped to your local grocery store. I know I know, there is some conspiracy theory out there that it is made from eggs or some bullshit, but it's just that, bullshit. So, you guys are with me now right? CT style, with just some butter is the way to go. I mean, when you eat lobster normally, what do you do it up with? I know there are probably some nasty fuckers our there right now thinking, MAYO!!!!, but that is incorrect...the answer you crack them open, squirt some lemon on there, dip in butter, and eat. Therefore, this is the correct way to eat a lobster roll. This is an option at the Lobster Pound and they are incredible. For real, look at that picture and tell me it could look any better. So yeah, if you need another reason to go to Brooklyn Flea (Saturday in Ft Greene and Sunday in Williamsburg) or the Smorgesburg (Saturdays in Williamsburg, same spot at BK Flea) now you can add the Lobster Pound to that list.red hook lobster pound sign

Here is some more info on the old Pound - first here is their website. On there you can find links to their twitter and facebook page which tell you where their food truck will be each day. As stated above they are at all the Brooklyn Flea locations on the weekends, and they are set up every Friday in Red Hook at the corner of Dwight and Van Dyke to serve up 1.5 lbs Lobsters for $27. This is all in addition to their store which is in, you guessed it, Red Hook @ 284 Van Brunt Street. For all DC people out there, they now have Rolling Lobster Shacks going on, so check out the site for more details.

Oh yeah, back to my earlier statement, the $16 price tag is a little much but...this is New York, and these things are shipped down from Maine every week, so what do you expect. We are going to investigate as I know there are a bunch of other lobster roll places in the city, and will report back with the best one in town.red hook lobster pound williamsburg brooklyn flea smorgesburg unweak

Dough - Unweakest Doughnuts Ever

Foods - 6.15.11

dough doughnuts bed stuy brooklyn flea stop the weakness unweakThese are the best doughnuts ever. For real. You can go to the store in Bed Stuy, or you can go to Brooklyn Flea which is in Williamsburg every Sunday (on N6th down by the water). Oh yeah, so Brooklyn Flea started this food market that is in Williamsburg on Saturdays now. If you know Brooklyn Flea, it is the same as the normal day except the whole place is filled with food stands. It is awesome. The food in general at Brooklyn Flea is the best. I wish it were open for me to eat at every day. Doug is a place I hit up at least once a weekend, but often twice now that they're there on Saturdays. At first I would only get the cafe au lait doughnut, but I have mixed it up witht he cinnamon, the glazed, chocolate frosted..the standards. Haven't busted out into the crazy fruit ones yet but I will make it into those one of these days.

So yeah, this place is the best. Best doughnut I have ever had and may ever have. Get one.

 

 

 

 

dough doughnuts bed stuy brooklyn flea stop the weakness unweak

Acqua al 2 - Blueberry Steak Stops Weakness

Restaurant - 5.26.11

acqua al 2 san diego stops the weaknessSo we were out in San Diego last week for work (thinking about starting a west coast operation of STW before moving onto world domination) and needed a place to get some food. We asked our hotel where to go and ended up at some mexican place that fit what we were looking for. After ordering a ton of food and drink and watching hussy after hussy go up to this NBA player at the bar and try to take him down, we expected a hefty bill. It came out to $54 for 3 people. In New York you can't even get a shitty lunch for that amount and this place was good and included drinking. Strange. Anyway, we figured we could get a little wild the following night as prices were a little cheaper, but we didn't know where to go.....until I went searching for my friend who was lost and stumbled upon.....Acqua al 2.

Acqua al 2 is a restaurant in Florence that is just the ill. I feel like it may be an American tourist trap as most everyone I know that has been to Florence has been there, but I don't care. Oddly enough, and as I saw the sign I finally remembered, they have restaurants in Florence and....San Diego. Weird I know, though they also just opened up a new spot in DC. More on that in a second. First off, and I don't want to talk too much shit because I am sure the rest of the city is great, but the part of San Diego we were in (gaslamp district area?) is pretty weird. The whole time I was thinking, who lives here? I see all these brand new apartment buildings, but no people. In fact, everything seems brand new. It's like they just put up a whole city last week and are just waiting for the people to come. Really sterile and kind of weird. People will say, oooooh, it is SUCH a clean city....which is comparable to saying that someone is SOOOO nice. Nice and clean are great things to be, but when that is all you've got going for you, it means boring. Alright, enough shitting on San Diego, as I said, we missed a huge amount of the city as we didn't have a car and I am sure there are tons of cool spots....we just didn't see them....that all doesn't matter though because I got to go to Acqua al 2.

acqua al 2 blueberry steak stops the weaknessI have wanted to go back to this restaurant so badly since I left Florence, but I thought I had about just as good a chance of going back to Florence as I did San Diego, so I thought it'd be a while. When we were in Florence (2006 I believe) I think we ate dinner here 2 nights, which is kind of ridiculous thinking back, but oh well. So for background this place is a steakhouse (I think) and if it is not its specialty is steak. 2 in particular: blueberry steak and a balsamic steak. I know what you are thinking, both from looking at that blueberry mound picture and just from the name - a blueberry steak looks and sounds gross. I thought so too, but it is delicious. Incredible. I have been craving one for so long. My sister even made it once to try and cure the craving and while it was very good, the craving remained. So yeah, there you go....I will pretty much just end it there as that was all I needed to get into....if you find yourself in Florence, San Diego, and now DC, go here and get one (or both as you can do a steak sampler) of these steaks. You can also do the pasta sampler which we also did and that was the ill too. You won't be disappointed.

Oh, and there are only 3 of these restaurants because in order to open one you must live over in Florence and train under the main guy there before he allows you to go out in the world holding up the Acqua al 2 name. He is at the spot in Florence most nights too and is a nice/funny guy.

Tacos Morelos and Mexicue - Stop the Weakness

Food/Bar - 4.28.11

mexicue taco bbq truck brooklyn and manhattan stop the weaknessAlright here are my two favorite taco trucks. One in Manhattan and one in Williamsburg - Mexicue and Taco Morelos, respectively. Ok, I know Mexicue's home base is in Williamsburg or nearby in Brooklyn, but it is in Manhattan at lunchtime basically all week. And yes it is very unweak. Taco Morelos is a truck (I think, right?) but it is stationary at the corner of N7th and Bedford. Mexicue is a truck in the new popular food truck trend fashion that is nice and clean and hip. Tacos Morelos looks dirty and shitty and not a place you would go unless told otherwise. Well it is and I am telling you otherwise. Now I know there is Endless Summer 3 or 4 blocks down Bedford and that too is incredible but I am stuck on Tacos Morelos and that's what I am pushing.

So how do they compare? They do and they don't - pure taste puts them pretty close but look, feel etc has them worlds apart. Mexican food goes two ways for me - it should be cheap, authentic and awesome or it can be somewhat high end expensive Mexican that is less authentic, sort of fusiony but delicious. Shitty Mexican falls in the average priced, fake bland boring category. I know, I know, that sounds kind of stupid, but I am guessing some people know what I mean......I am a sucker for Mexican food though so I will pretty much eat whatever when it comes to Mexican. Mexicue is somewhat of an anomaly because it is a Mexican BBQ (hence the name) and their dishes remind of you the higher end mexican category, but it is cheap. I mean, after all it is just tacos and sliders served from a truck, so it should be cheap. Tacos Morelos is legit Mexican. Cheap, somewhat dirty seeming, authentic and nothing flashy, and the people that work there don't speak english. It reminds me of Taqueria la Veracruzana in Philadelphia which is one of my all time favorite Mexican spots.tacos morelos truck in williamsburg brooklyn stop the weakness

So...what's the good word on these places? They both stop the weakness. Tacos Morelos doesn't move, so go to N7th and Bedford in Williamsburg and there you go. For Mexicue sign up for their page on facebook and they will tell you where they are parked each day. From Tacos Morelos I go with the chorizo tacos, no guac, and add cheese....and it's that Mexican cheese that is the ill. From Mexicue I like to go with the smoked chicken tacos and the pulled pork sliders. I want them both now.

chorizo tacos from tacos morelos williamsburg brooklyn review stop the weakness

Booze Shakes - Sounds Gross I Know, but Unweak

Food/Bar - 4.27.11

dumont burger booze shake stop the weaknessA milkshake with booze in it....sounds kind of gross I know. Well, part of you thinks, maybe that could be good, I like booze, and I like milkshakes, so maybe putting them together could be good. Then another part thinks about a heavy milkshake with some booze thrown on top, can't really picture them mixing, and therefore you get a milkshake sip chased by vodka, or vice versa. Taking a nice vodka shot with a milkshake chaser. Anyway, they have these at DuMont Burger in Williamsburg and I drank one. I tried it out for everyone guinea pig style. It was pretty damn good. By the end I was wishing it were just a normal milkshake but.....well, yeah, give it a whirl if you are in town. Here is their website, I had the White Russian one only with a black and white milkshake.

Roberta's in Bushwick - STOPS THE FUCKING WEAKNESS

Restaurants - 2.15.11

roberta's bushwick inside stops the weaknessRoberta's is a place that you should go out of your way to go to. If you live in Manhattan and think that Brooklyn is some far away land that is only worth traveling to for some special field trip - this is a place worth the trip.

This place has big hype and it more than delivers. It destroys in fact. Even a place like Grimaldi's, which many claim to be the best pizza in New York (thus pretty much anywhere), doesn't kill expectations like this. I mean, Roberta's doesn't have the hype of being the best pizza in New York, though I have seen it ranked pretty high up there, so I guess there is a slight difference there.....but still my expectations were real high. I guess what really blew me away was less the pizza than the rest of the food and the place itself (atmosphere etc which I really had no knowledge of going in)....and the pizza is one of the best in New York. Definitely top 5, if not number one or two.

Going with the comparison to Grimaldi's, which I only do because that is its main rival in my mind, this place destroys in atmosphere. We had to wait 45 mins, but we got to sit at the outside bar which was covered by a tent rather than outside in a line like you have to do at Grimaldi's. The tent was set up as if it were a ski lodge/tent on a mountain, and they had mulled wine, which was rather tasty. The place in general is kind of ghetto and not necessarily in the ghetto, but the surrounding area could be a little more prosperous. If you have been to Bushwick, it is standard Bushwick. The inside is a good balance of some dirty rundown factory, but the furniture etc does not seem dirty, which is what is important....character without feeling grimey. Awesome place to hang out at, and can't wait to go back in the summer when the outdoor seating is up and running.

roberta's pizza bushwick stops the weaknessFood. This is just as good as the atmosphere, better in fact. The pizza is like....it's in the style of Patsy's or Fornino (which is on Bedford Ave and Williamsburg and is my go to ordering spot), which is to say real thin very good crust, slices of fresh mozzarella, goodness. We got a cheese plate, awesome, and we got a pasta dish, which I don't even remember what it was. This was our one issue...it took forever to come, to the point of trying to cancel it. The waitress told us that it would be out in a second and she would comp it for us....for some reason she said she would bring it out and then wrap it up at the table for us to take to go. She brought it out and went back to the kitchen to get a take out container, but by the time she got back it was gone. I was full and didn't think I could eat anymore, but this was so good I inhaled it. It was spicey as fuck and absolutely delicious. She didn't comp it for us as she said she would, but it was so good, and I was so happy with this meal, I didn't care.

So yeah, go to Roberta's. This place is fairly well known and I could just be preaching to the choir but.....who cares. I hadn't been before, am blown away, and wanted to write it up. This is worth the trip wherever you are coming from. Get the mulled wine if you go too.

roberta's outside bar tent in the winter bushwick roberta's brooklyn pasta stops the weakness

Lodge - Stops the Weakness

Food/Bar - 1.26.11

lodge  brooklyn  williamsburg unweak Lodge at Grand and Havemeyer - This place has incredible brunch. Delicious. I had been there before for dinner and really liked it but brunch has me thinking I've found my go to brunch spot. The food was incredible, the drinks great as well, and the inside of the place is like a ski lodger/ski town bar....which is to say comfortable, kind of dark, and pretty much sweet.....and a perfect place to spend a winter day.

I forget what I ate for dinner a couple months back but this past weekend I had sausage, eggs, biscuits and gravy, as well as some pancakes. While the biscuits and gravy were stellar, the pancakes were unreal. I almost wished I had ordered them myself but I got the best of both worlds. I don't even know what was in the pancakes that made them so good but there was something and it is an awesome addition. I also saw the French toast, which was ordered by the people at the table next to us, and I can't wait to try that. So yeah go there if you are in Williamsburg or just take the L over there as it's not far from the Bedford stop and worth the trip to Brooklyn. Oh I also didn't feel like having a bloody Mary so tried this lemonade vodka drink which was a good morning drink...and the hot toddies and whiskey cider drinks are the tops too.

This place is an all around weakness stopper.

lodge lemonade vodka williamsburg lodge brooklyn stops the weakness

Roebling Tea Room - Very Unweak

Food/Bar - 1.26.11

roebling tea room banksyI have a million restaurants to write up but have really been slacking on them. DuMont (Burger and the normal restaurant) is known for having one of the best burgers in Brooklyn and all of New York but I must say, Roebling Tea Room? Is really right up there when it comes to burgers. It is pretty rich I must say but it's a burger and a good burger shouldn't be all that easy on the stomach. I will say, my only issue here is that thiis burger doesn't come with anything. If you want some sort of side you have to order it separately. That would be fine if the burger were cheaper but it is still a $10+ burger. Hey, at least its better than DuMont Burger which charges extra for everything even ketchup. In fact after we ordered burgers for 3 people from DuMont and it cost us close to or over $60 (I can't really remember as it was a little while ago) I have not gone back and it pushed me to go elsewhere for burgers.

Comparing this place to DuMont once again, the actual restaurant is a cooler place than DuMont Burger for sure and is about the same as the other DuMont restaurant except for the fact that there is no outdoor space. There is a cool bar area to hang out before dinner or just for drinks with couches etc and the place is dimly lit and a nice laid back place to hang out. It really has everything I like about the Williamsburg restaurant scene - it is a nice restaurant where the quality and creativity of the food would lend itself to being stuffy and very expensive were it located somewhere else. Instead it is not horribly expensive and laid back. I only touched on burgers here but the rest of the menu is actually not that large. I think it changes a fair amount but the size of the menu can be a good or a bad thing depending on how you look at it. If you are indecisive it makes the decision making process easier but if you aren't crazy about what's on there, there's more of a chanve of not wanting anything on there.

Overall this is one of my favorite places in Williamsburg. If you are looking to get out of Manhattan it is definitely worth the trip.

Oh and there is a super heady Banksy outside (left obviously, not the picture of the burger), or is it a faux banksy? I dont really know, I am not all that hip to this shit. There is a giraffe that goes along with this picture that is kind of cool. Banksy Roebling Tea Room into google will get you a picture.burger roebling tea room unweak

Make Your Own Bloody Mary Bar @ Scollay Square in Boston - Stops the Weakness

Food/Bar - 11.29.10

bloody mary scollay squareWe haven't had bloody marys up here in a while and when our Boston contingent sent us this picture, we demanded a write up regardless of where it is. I have been meaning to make it up to Boston and now here's another reason:

I'll keep this pithy, primarily because most of our faithful readers probably do not frequent Boston....

But, should you find yourself in Beantown on a Sunday, regardless of your hangover status, do yourself a favor and swing by Scollay Square for a customized Bloody Mary.

Scollay Square has a MYOBMB (Make your own Bloody Mary Bar). Yes, that is correct--no more asking the bartender if the mix is house-made, or for it extra spicy, or for extra olives or wedge of lemon. At Scollay Square, you get to make your own bloody. And to top it off (no pun intended) it's only 8 bucks for a generous pour of your favorite Top Shelf vodka.

Ok, so now you've got a pint glass filled with ice and grey goose vodka. Now, make your way over to the bar and choose from over a dozen hot sauces, 4 types of salt, spicy V8 or regular tomato juice, olives, carrots, pickles, celery, lemon, lime, salt, pepper, horseradish, worcestershire sauce, chili powder, cayenne pepper and a bunch of other crap I can't remember because I was so overwhelmed with the very awesome abundance of choices. They have stuff you never even knew existed, let alone contemplated putting in a bloody.

As a huge Bloody Mary fan, this was like Christmas coming early for me. And to make it even more awesome, my girlfriend paid for it.

reBar - Really Unweak to the Max

Legit Random - 9.14.10

rebar dumboAlright, I have been meaning to write this place up for a while as I go there often and really like it. Here is what I wrote a month or two ago but never put up on the site:

Take the F train over to DUMBO (York St) and walk a block down Jay and reBar is right there basically. I have been to rBbar a million times, but this past weekend I was cruising around Brooklyn looking for a new place to call home and went in for a beer or two and figured I’d snap some pictures. It is an awesome spot, pretty much has everything one of my favorite go-to restaurant/bars has – except a jukebox I guess. Cool space that is laid back , good large beer selection, and just, well easy. Not much else to say, check out rebar next time you are in DUMBO.

So, do I have much else to say a couple months later? Not really, the place hasn’t changed, it’s still a great go-to spot – never overly crowded, lots of space, laid back, and good food and beer selection. I have been a bunch of since writing the above, tried out some new food and taken pictures, so I guess that helps this here write-up. Some good ceviche, some chicken and waffles and some just good ole fashion fun. One thing I will say is that when you order food and ask the waiter what items he/she prefers, the response I have always gotten is, everything is pretty good here. It isn’t really all that helpful when you are indecisive and the amount of times I have heard that line there is coming up on comical. That’s just funny and doesn’t take away from the place at all.

So yeah, go to reBar next time you are in DUMBO and looking for a place to hang out and have a beer.waffles rebar

ceviche rebar rebar bar dumbo
rebar
inside rebar

DuMont Burger & Union Ave Restaurant - Really Unweak

Movies - 8.24.10

dumont fanSo, I moved to Williamsburg a few weeks ago (I know, real heady), which has caused the website to be down for a little while, but has also provided a new place to explore. Therefore in the past few weeks I went to both DuMont Burger and the restaurant on Union Ave. Both awesome, and highly recommended.

I went to the restaurant first on one of my first nights living over here. It has a similar feel to DuMont Burger, but has more formal seating inside and an outside semi covered seating area out back. Restaurants are one of the things I was most excited about when moving here because they have the food of a high end place (quality and inventiveness, for lack of a better word) with a laid back atmosphere and reasonable price. Where I used to live in Manhattan was particularly bad, but in general, Manhattan is expensive to go out to eat with any frequency…at least if you want to get something good. I know that’s a generalization, but whatever. Anyway, I ended up getting the special that night, duck, which also happened to be the most expensive thing on the menu, so I shouldn’t really be going off about a cheap meal. It was delicious though…and easy. I also had a chilled cucumber watermelon soup that was particularly good considering it was one many million degree evenings we’ve had this summer.

dumont menu

On the flip side you have DuMont Burger, which we went to this past Saturday. It’s not really a flip side as the restaurant has pretty much the same feel, though stripped down to one room inside with all bar or bar-esque seating and outdoor sidewalk seating. DuMont is known for their burger, which can also be had at the other restaurant I will add, and this menu is focused on the burger – like the seating/layout, the menu is bar focused. The burger lives up to its reputation. That is a tasty burger. You can get a normal one or a mini one….my friend got the mini one, but I couldn’t really tell the difference to tell the truth. We had milkshakes and beers to wash them down, and the black and white milkshakes are pretty damn good as well. The burgers came with fries/onion rings and we also ordered some mac and cheese, which they are also known for, rightfully so….though I must say I was more into the burger than the mac and cheese. Needless to say, I walked away from this meal full to the point of being ill. A good ill though. The meal was great.

dumont burgerI will say though, the service kind of sucked at DuMont Burger. It is a popular spot and they draw a good crowd…..and this beautiful Saturday afternoon, one of the first to not be plagued by deathly heat/humidity, was no exception. This could be the reason for the slow service, but our milkshakes came out after our burgers for example. The waitress, well a few waitresses, came out to check on us, and each went back looking for these milkshakes and they were nowhere to be found. One said they may actually be out of them, and another one kept coming back shocked that they hadn’t been delivered yet. We thought they were fucking with us at one point. They could have been to tell you the truth because it was pretty absurd. Anyway, that didn’t change my mind on the place. It is worth it. The burger is that good. We were just really ready to get the fuck out of there by the end of the meal, which we did….once our bill finally came back after paying with credit card. Oh, the service at the other spot was great by the way. Oh yeah, they gave us fans when we were outside at the restaurant and it was a million degrees out. I am fanning myself in the top picture.....it felt good.dumont burger

dumont ny duck soup dumont ny

Frank Pepe's Pizza New Haven - Stops the Weakness

Food - 8.23.10

frank pepe's new havenApparently I am the only one who had never heard of Frank Pepe’s Pizza in New Haven. Driving back from a trip up north, a friend insisted we stop by cause “it’s the best pizza we’ll ever have” and its two seconds off I-95, which it is. We call at 6 when we’re 40 minutes away from New Haven, “sorry, next pick up time is 8:10.” Didn’t really understand that, so we say fuck that we’re not waiting that long and decide we’ll just swing by and eat quickly. There are two restaurants, the old one and the new one right next to each other. Both have lines that you look at and say FUCK THAT. My friend insisted it was worth it, we wait an hour. By the time we get our pizza its 8:20. The only pizza my friend allowed us to order was the white clam pizza…best pizza I have ever had, hands down. So next time you pass New Haven…fuckin do it, it’s worth it, New Haven sucks any, might as well. Website

18th Annual Vermont Brewers Festival – Heady People, Heady Place, Heady Beer

Food/Beer - 7.13.10

VT BrewWhile there are lots of brewfests, I thought this one deserves some special attention. Coming up July 16-17, I can’t say enough about the VT Brewers Festival. I’ve never met anyone who went and didn’t want to go back the next year. They do it every year at Burlington Waterfront Park in Burlington, VT, which is gorgeous, and serves some of the best beer in the country and . Even though it’s called the Vermont Brewers Festival, brewers from all over New England, Canada and some randos makes their way there. Basically you start out purchasing tickets (at least you used to), but by the end everyone is so hammered they basically give away free beer by the end. After the festival ends, Burlington basically becomes a ridiculous shit show, which is a nice plus. If you have any intention to go, make sure you try the Shed Mountain Ale, which I think is the greatest beer on earth and it’s impossible to find outside of Vermont.

Fette Sau – Piglets Rejoice

Food - 7.13.10

fette sauI probably walked by this place 50 times and never realized it was a restaurant before going there with a friend kind of by accident. Pretty pumped I did, cause it turns out it’s one of the best BBQ places in NYC, which would explain the long line of people every time I walked by. Tucked away on Metropolitan Ave. in Williamsburg, the place is basically half in door half out. It’s kind of hybrid of a barbecue place and beer garden (Fette Sau actually means fat pig in German, so go figure on that one). Anyway, the brisket is fucking incredible, literally melts in your mouth. They use a dry rub, which I think is the way BBQ should be done so you’re not masking poorly done meet in 6lbs of BBQ sauce. Not trying to sound like too much of a snob, but I would definitely go with the brisket, the pulled pork really doesn’t compare. Since every food critic in New York, including Zagat has named this as one of the best BBQ joints in the city, I’m not exactly breaking any news here, but place still rocks, check it out.

Pig Heaven - Stops the Weakness

Food - 5.13.10

pigHave you been to Pig Heaven? It is, as the name says, heavenly. It is up there on 82nd and 2nd, so it's a little out of the way, unless you live up there, but it is worth the trip in my mind. The pork buns are incredible and their ribs are the best. Oh yeah, it's a Chinese restaurant too. The name can be a little misleading. The website is awesome too, almost as high tech as this one.

heavenly

Patsy's - Stops the Weakness

Pizza - 5.13.10

patsysPatsy’s is legit. I am not telling anyone anything new here, I just had it and was blown away yet again. In fact, I have had it about 3 times in the past week, because I sort of forgot how good it was and hadn't eaten it in a while. It is one of those places that no matter how many times you eat it, you are still blown away by how good it is. And those types of places are good to eat at. There are a bunch of them in the city too which is pretty nice as it's close no matter where you live. The margherita pizza is where it's at.za

Bloody Nantucket

Bar - 4.28.10

Somewhere along the way the Bloody Mary became a big focus of this site. Maybe because I went off on my favorite one at N3rd in Phila, but who knows. Regardless, I get pictures of bloodies sent to me from all over the globe. Anyway, a reader sent me this one from Nantucket's Brotherhood of the Theives. I love this bar/restaurant. It is annoying in the summer because it is packed and hard to get a table etc, but it is one of the few places that stays open all year. It is my favorite place to go out there in the winter, so I was happy to have this picture sent to me. It made me jealous as well as I wish I were there to be drinking this. I don't even like olives, but that display still rules.

Lorenzo's - Stops the Weakness

Food - 4.28.10

There is a lot of talk of better pizza places in the city, but I don't know if I buy it. Even if there are this place will always stand out as my favorite. It is on 3rd and South for those of you that don't know. I first fell in love with this place when I dated a girl who lived around the corner. Whenever I would come to town I would always want to get slices from here, which I don't think she loved too much. I went here once a week when I lived here and pretty much go here every time I am in town. I don't know what it is about it. It is a little sweet and all around a little different....but still very standard, which in my mind makes it perfect. The slices are big too. One does the trick usually. Or in this case you can follow it up with a cheesesteak. This is not only my favorite pizza in Phila, but anywhere. Bold statement I know, but bring me somewhere else if you want to battle it out.

Pat's - Stops the Weakness

Food - 4.28.10

I hate the Pat's Geno's question about as much as I hate Geno's. Pat's is where its at. Alright, I don't hate Geno's, I will go there if the line is too long at Pat's but I haven't been to Geno's in ages. Cant remember the last time I was there. I know I know, Steve's up in Northeast Phila is the best, but I have never been. I am not sure where it is exactly, and I like Pat's and always end up going there. Someday I will make it to Steve's, but until then, I will stick to Pat's and will be happy.

aspen

Aspen Social Club - Not Weak

Food Bar - 3.31.10

This place was pretty expensive, and I am sure turns into a pretty annoying club in the later hours, but I went here for an early dinner the other week and it was pretty awesome. The margaritas were incredible, and were probably the cause of my wastedness later in the night, and the food was great as well. I had steak tacos, tried out some mac & cheese, and ate some wings too. The steak tacos were real good, but real small and expensive for what they were. Mac & cheese may have been 4 cheese chorizo mac & cheese, and therefore was also quite good. Wings were wings and were good.

Positive parts about this - a pretty good place to go in midtown if you ever need that. I mean, I would love to go back if someone else was paying - add that to the midtown location, and it seems like a pretty good work lunch place. Or post work happy hour. It was pretty cool inside, dark, etc. I enjoyed hanging out there seated. Not sure if I would like it later at night at all.

99 Miles to Philly - Stops the Weakness (for NY at least)

Food Bar - 3.24.10

When I was in college there were a lot of people from Phila and they could be snobby about their cheesesteaks. I had a group of friends that would take trips to Phila late at night just to grab Pats and/or Genos. Looking back on this, it's kind of absurd as I wouldn't even take Pat's back to my apartment to eat it when I lived there because it has about the shelf life of McDonalds. Anyway, I didn't have a problem with that because the trips were fun and whatnot and it's a damn good cheesesteak. I just didn't really get all the hype. Great, it's made in Philly, so what that can be done anywhere, right? Well, no actually. It can't. I lived in Phila for a few years and became a lame cheesesteak snob. Personally if you are in a Pats Genos debate, I go Pats all the way, but all the cheesesteaks are better in Philly for the most part, and I am not going to get into what the best places in Philly are. Moving back to NY, I couldn't find a good one. Even the supposed best of places just weren't the same. It is a mixture of a lot of things, but mainly, I think it has to do with the water and the bread. That is what I am sticking with anyway. I eat Carl's or that other place in the 40s on the west side, blanking on the name right now, but they just aren't that good. I tried out 99 Miles to Philly because I had heard it's as close as they come to a legit cheesesteak and, well, the first time I was not impressed. Then again, I didn't have a real cheesesteak and put provolone on it. I don't know what I was thinking, but wiz can be sketch sometimes, so, well I fucked up. I mean, if you go to Pats and get provolone they just dick you over. They put the cheese on top and don't even let it melt. Anyway, I went back to 99 Miles and did it up right, extra wiz with onions, and it was incredible. For real, it is basically as good and close as they come to the real thing.

 

chicken cheese
99 Miles to Philly is where it's at. It is located on 3rd btw 12th and 13th on the east side of the street and, well, they say it is 99 Miles away from Pats/Genos. They even have a mapquest thing on the wall showing the directions and how it is 99 miles. Well, after reviewing the directions, it is not really the route I would take to get there, but hey, it's a gimmick for a good name, so I get it. Fine by me. Now, I know what some of you are thinking....that's a chicken cheesesteak. I had been there the day before and had a cheesesteak and, well, wasn't really up for the back to back cheesesteak action, so I did a chickencheesesteak. First time actually, and that too was awesome. Done up the same way, extra wiz with. Awesome. Basically....this is the best cheesesteak in the city that I have had so far. If that interests you, I suggest going there.

Margaritas - Stop the Weakness

Food Bar - 3.24.10

There have been all the bloody mary pics, people sending them in and whatnot, and I am all for that, but the bloody mary isn't my favortie. I think that goes to the margarita. I took this picture down in Palm Beach and these big glasses are part of the reason they get a bad name I think. Probably also their light green color, but, I don't know what the big fuss is. I order one at dinner and get made fun of, which I expect but don't really understand. It's not frozen and if it's made properly it shouldn't have disgusting fucking mix in there. Tequila, lime, is pretty much what you've got, throw some rocks in there, some salt. You get the, oh, well, maybe if you are in some tropical place, I will give you a pass. Give me a pass, I will give you a pass for your fear of looking like too much of a nancy boy to order afucking awesome drink. This sort of stuff is plain stupidity. For me these are anytime drinks and has even replaced the bloody mary before as a morning drink. That can be kind of intense with the alright existing heartburn, but sometimes you have to. I apologize, I forget where this was taken, otherwise I would say the whole place was awesome because the food was also delicious.

Random Bloody - Weak

Food Bar - 3.24.10

I check my email the other day and this is there. All the email says is Hello Philadelphia.....so is this supposed to be from Phila? Anyway, it looks kind of weak and boring doesn't it? I mean, I enjoy pictures and anything being sent in, but I am not sure if this was supposed to be good or bad or what. I mean, it kind of looks like, well, as I said, it looks boring. Like it came from Fridays or some other big mass produced place, but Fridays would probably have it more spiced up than that, so I take it back. Like a hotel bar or something, I don tknow. It even has a good amount of fixings with it too. I don't know why I am bitching. Does it not look kind of boring and weak though?

Resto - Not Weak at All

Food/Bar - 3.9.10

Resto is probably the one of the restaurants that I've been to the most. I like the book of beers to choose from and the menu is small but good all around. So if you're indecisive like me, it works out nicely. Also, it is one of the few good, not too expensive restaurants around me (29th and Park).

Usually I go with mussels (three different kinds, a chorizo one, a bacon dijon one, and a curry coconut one). Chorizo being one of my favorite things, I thought they would be my favorite, but they are not. The bacon ones are awesome. Also, I got a burger this time around. Oddly enough, I had never gotten a burger here. There is always something less plain and awesome on the menu that I want, but this time they were out of what I wanted, lamb ribs, so I went with a burger. It was awesome too. I definitely plan on getting a burger from here more often. Anyway....here are some pics. Go to Resto. It's good. Oh, and as for the pics being dark...its kind of dark in there. Not as dark as the pictures show, but I didn't want to put the flash on. A) because I walk around standing in front of the stupidest things taking in pictures, and I just didn't want to being flashing the fucking camera all over the place on this evening, and B) that's what it looks like inside when you are there.

Nolita House French Toast - Stops Weakness

I am not sure why it took me so long to get this up here. This is possibly the best frech toast ever...though, as you can tell from the picture, it sort of isn't standard french toast, so it may get disqualified from the runnings for best french toast. Those runnings are stupid though, and I don't really care what it is called, it is awesome. Nolita House is probably the place I have been the most for brunch to tell you the truth, and a big part of that is because of my love of french toast. This being the best means I frequent this place a lot. You get a choice of a bloody mary, sangria, or a mimosa with brunch, which is a pretty nice little add on as well. I typically get the sangria. Not typically what I think of for brunch, but I like it.

Back to the french toast a little....they have actually changed it up a few times since I have been going there over the years, but it doesn't matter, it is always incredible. The one I had yesterday, pictured left, is the one I had originally though, so I don't know if they just changed it up once and people got pissed, and the brought back the original.....or if there is some sort of rotation to it. Doesn't matter, the one in between was real good as well, and they could change it up or stay the same and I really wouldn't care. This one has a lot of fruit on it and has a vanilla flavoring to it. It is hard to really tell what is going on with it, where the bread starts and stops....I mean, its really like a brick of french toast. If you like french toast at all, I would get this as soon as possible.

NYT Beer Article/Resto

Here is a good New York Times article about Belgian beers if that strikes your fancy at all. 3 guys went and did a blind tasting of 20 different beers....though it looks like they only rate 10 of them. One thing that I like about this article is that the owner of Resto, Christian Pappanicholas, took part, and Resto is probably my favorite place closest to my apartment. It is awesome in both their food and their beer selection. It's on 29th between Park and Lex. If you haven't been, go, it's great. Oh, and the pic to the right is just funny because it's the donkeyest worst pour ever, and, knowing the person who poured said beer, the picture always makes me laugh. I am sure you needed that little side commentary.

Elizabeth (Restaurant) - Not Weak at all

My friend was in town this past weekend so a couple of us went to dinner at Elizabeth on, you got it, Elizabeth St, btw Prince and Houston. Its on the west side of the street closer to Houston. This place was good. Nothing too wild and crazy about it, pretty standard good restaurant. Fairly crowded, cool place inside, and the food was good. What really stands out in my memory is the music and these grilled cheese slider appetizers. The music stands out because Neutral Milk Hotel was playing, which I enjoyed, alongside a bunch of other good music. I know NMH has been ever increasing in popularity since it was released over 10 years ago now, but it was still interesting to hear at a restaurant...and these grilled cheese sliders were...well they were cool for how standard, but different they are. Never seen them before. Definitely try them if you go. This place didn't blow my mind, but it is a good place to check out if you are looking for something new. I had scallops which were very good as well, but I forget what everyone else had. I wouldn't drop everything and run here immediately, but, as I said, if you haven't been and are looking for something new, I would go...and I would go again too. Shit, had Los Feliz not worked out I was going to add it to my list of places to try to go to. Oh and since I only took a picture of us out on the street outside the restaurant, go to their website if you want to see what it looks like

Los Feliz - Not Weak to Pretty Much Stopping Weakness

So this is the first thing I am writing where I am instituting a rating system of sorts. The idea originally was to only write about things that we like, but...that may not always be the case. For now I am thinking the scale will be - Very Weak, Weak, Not Weak, and the best being Stops the Weakness, as in this is so good it not only isn't weak, but it stops other things from being weak....we will see how this goes....So.....

Went to Los Feliz on Valentine's Day and it was awesome. I have been here a number of times before and always like it. I am a fan of mexican food and love margaritas and this place is good for both. They have a jalapeno magarita that is great, though it also supplies heartburn that is equal to its goodness. I don't remember what I am eating here in this picture, but it is basically just a bowl of mole goodness. There was a fried egg on top and underneath was chicken, some cheese, some sort of shell/chips whathaveyou, and then delicious mole all mixed into this bowl. It was the special of the evening so I am not sure when you will be able to try this out again, but it should be added to their normal menu. We both got it in fact. I also got a cream of asparagus soup with walnuts or some kind of nut in there. It too was incredible. Add some margaritas and some wine and it was a perfect meal. Besides the drinks, these were all specials, but I have been there on normal nights and the standard menu is great as well. Especially the fish tacos.

I like the decor of this place too. Check out the website if you want to see some pictures. It has a little bit of a dungeon feel downstairs, but I think it is cool....it can be a little dark though. Surprsingly it was sort of empty too. Usually it is pretty filled up, but maybe people don't go to mexican restaurants on valentines day? I don't know. The downstairs was pretty empty though, which was sweet if you were like me and did not make a reservation on valentines day. After being called dumb for thinking we could just walk into a restaurant on valentines day sans reservation, it made me feel pretty good...and saved the day. So I am a Los Feliz fan for sure.

Another

Funny, but someone else sent me a pic of that bloody mary posted below (Bar Pilar on 14th and T). no words or any commentary about the place or anything. just this picture. looks pretty good though. I'd like to drink it right now rather than get ready for and go to work.

N3rd Bloody Jealous

To cause jealousy my friend sends me pictures like this every once in a while. I miss going to N3rd on weekends. Thats a pretty awesome picture too, like its from a commercial or something where the food never actually looks like that when you get there. Though those are commercials for mcdonalds.

GIANT GREEN TEA ICE CREAM

I got the best birthday present ever.....a giant thing of green tea ice cream. Not sure where it was from, but it was awesome and lasted 0.0 seconds. I am sorry for all the jealousy this will cause.

San Loco pt II

I went to San Loco the other day when record shopping and took some more pictures inside. I love this place. Now you can see a chicken queso loco in all its glory. This one is at 10th and A too. I think I said 12th and A in my below post and, well thats where I thought it was, and it had me roaming a little trying to find it.

DC Bloody Mary

In response to the N3rd bloody post, a reader sent in this picture of a bloody mary from Bar Pilar on 14th and T in DC. I used to live in DC but never had the pleasure of having this bloody. It has strips of bacon in it, and I must say, it looks pretty damn good. As she said in her email: "i am a vegetarian unless served bacon in my bloody mary. amazing." If anyone else has a bloody mary that they think tops this one, let me know. Send a picture too or else its just sort of worthless.

and after that statement, I must say that there is a bloody mary at the Standard Tap in Philadelphia that is pretty incredible. I am not sure what is in their mix, but its different than your standard bloody mary, and I feel that people either love it or hate it. Most people I have been with really love it. Also, the Standard Tap has an incredible juke box that they change up a fair amount. The first time I went there they had The Pod in there as well as Handsome Boy Modeling School, The Circle Jerks, T Rex, The Germs, Dinosaur Jr and many more. I fell in love with that placed based on that jukebox alone, and its not one of those digital jukeboxes that can have anything. these were cds selected by the bar/restaurant. awesome...then it was an added bonus that they have awesome bloody marys, an awesome beer selection, and the food is pretty incredible as well. Next time I am in Philadelphia I need to go over there, as its been a while, and grab a picture of their bloody. It is a thick bloody mary.

San Loco

San Loco....2 Chicken Queso Locos, 1 limeade, a few margaritas, rocks, salt, and zantac 150. that makes me happy. and it makes me want it now. this is the one I usually go to between 7th and 8th on 2nd. but there are 2 others that I know of. one around 13ths and A I think. somewhere near there. the other is down by arlenes grocery and pianos, etc. anyway, I love san loco. I wish I lived next to it, I would probably go every night...though if I lived next door to it I may do 1 chicken queso loco, then move over to crif dog and get the good morning dog (bacon, cheese, fried egg) and then maybe go over to dumpling man and finish off there. though, if you stick it out at San Loco you can at least pick up dessert two or three stores down. sundaes. oh, and for those of you who don't know what a chicken queso loco is....it is a chicken taco, hard shell, then a layer of cheese and a soft shell around that. you can do it with guac too if you are into that sort of thing, but I am not. oh, my friend does the cat fish queso locos and loves them. my other friend stuck his nose up at them, so I am just setting it straight that those are legit. oh, and the cinnamon chips are good.

Fried Green Tea Ice Cream

I have been on a huge fried green tea ice cream kick recently. It really is the most incredible thing ever. We always order it from Ginza, which I have never been to personally, and....well....to tell you the truth Ginza is one of those restaurants that comes to your apartment and sticks a menu under your door, which basically means you throw it away. If a restaurant has to bombard you with menus it means its sketch in my book, especially when it comes to sushi. Anyway, a couple years back my roommate's girlfriend at the time pulled out one of the 500 menus of theirs that we had in the old menu drawer and ordered...and it turned out to be good. I tried to find the website for them, but there doesn't seem to be one. I know the number by heart (212) 889-3333, and we used to only order the Gyoza from them. We would call and give our apt number and they lady would say, hi, how are you this evening, how many gyoza? Since then we have branched out a little and the most recent addition is the green tea ice cream. Is it the best around? I don't know, but I like it. If you know of a place that you think has the best green tea ice cream, let me know so I can check it out, but I don't think I will betray Ginza for too long. I guess there is a Ginza on the upper east side, but I don't think this one is related. This one is on 35th and I think its real name is 251 Ginza Sushi...at least that's what google is telling me.

N3rd Bloody Mary

This is the best bloody mary anywhere. It is at N3rd in Philadelphia. North 3rd is.....dundundundunddaaaaah on 3rd Street in Northern Liberties. I think its on the corner if 3rd and Brown. I have only been there 500 times, so I should know this but I don't. This bloody has a pepper, olive, cucumber, celery, lemon, lime and a pickled tomato. There used to be a pickle in it, which was my favorite part, but last time I went, which is when this picture was taken, they told me that was no more, which is a shame. Anyway, I have also put a picture of their Monte Cristo, its incredible as well. Maybe not the best Monte Cristo ever, that may be the one Prune makes in NY. If you have never had a Monte Cristo, I suggest getting one. In fact, just go to N3rd next weekend and get a Monte Cristo and a bloody mary. Prune fries their Monte Cristo, but you also have to wait at least 30-45mins to get a seat...that is NY brunch for you though. Actually, while we are discussing bloodies, Prune has a huge list as well, and my favorite there is a wasabi bloody that has a beef jerky in it. Its awesome as well. The food at prune probably beat N3rd, but.....N3rd will always stand out as my favorite brunch spot, if not favorite restaurant ever. I think I went there at least once a weekend for the 2 years I lived in Phila. Though, during this particular occasion, we got yelled at by the people behind us for being too loud. I forget the direct quote, but it was funny. I will try and remember it.

EDIT: I know you all have been waiting with bated breath, so I got the quote from my friend: the line from the huge "biker" dude was - " Do you think this is your own personal club???" then somethign about "people are trying to eat/enjoy their meal...."