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Blumie's Profile

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Needing to trim down my list... what should I remove or add?

I think you've entirely misconstrued what collardman is saying. I don't read his comments as saying that we should go places just to check them off the list. But people on this board frequently mistakenly believe there is some objective standard to the enjoyment of food and discount the role that external factors play in that enjoyment. There is no doubt that among the externalities that contribute to your assessment of a meal include what side of the bed you woke up on, whether you had a good day that day, whether you got along with your spouse that day, the traffic on the ride to the restaurant, the greeting you received when you walked into the restaurant, etc. Also among those factors is the atmospherics of the restaurant. I can tell you that if I walk into a place that has a "corporate" feel to it and is decorated like a TGI Friday's, I'm likely to enjoy it far less, no matter how good the food, than some quirky little place. Contrast that with Bacchanal: I love the place, but I can't tell you it's because they serve the best food I can get in Nola; but I can tell you that it's because of the combination of good food and Bacchanal's quirky only-in-Nola vibe.

What I hear collardman saying, and what I agree with, is the unique attributes of places like Casamento'sabd Pasquale's Manale greatly contribute to the enjoyment of a meal there, even if one can find better food elsewhere in some objective sense.

about 14 hours ago
Blumie in New Orleans

Any good cheap or somewhat cheap spots ($10-$20pp) in Williamsburg?

I've only been to Vanessa's Dumplings once, but enjoyed it very much. You can have a good tasty meal in your price range.

http://vanessas.com/

Sugarsburg is primarily a bar, but they turn out some pretty good, reasonably priced food, too.

http://www.sugarburg.com/

Jul 01, 2015
Blumie in Outer Boroughs
1

Walking and snacking, Uptown and beyond?

I've heard good reports about High Hat as well. And can personally vouch for the great pizza (and other food) at Ancora. Dat Dog is another crowd favorite on Freret; I gave it two shots myself and personally do not find it to be worthy of the hype.

Jun 30, 2015
Blumie in New Orleans

Monday apps and drinks

Borgne is good, perhaps even very good, but not worth going all the way up to the Hyatt for if you're staying on the river.

Cochon and Cochon Butcher are great places for snacking.

If you visit is after the summer, you might consider ending up at Bacchanal, where Helen Gillet normally plays on Monday night (she's on hiatus for the summer). You might consider ending up there anyways for whomever is subbing in. End your wanderings with a chilled white and a cheese plate in the courtyard while listening to some great music.

Jun 30, 2015
Blumie in New Orleans

Needing to trim down my list... what should I remove or add?

I hate Ruby Slipper (it's not "mediocre" IMHO; it's bad). My breakfast spot is Surrey's. But only do breakfast at Surrey's if you're going to skip lunch that day.

I would add Bacchanal as a casual dinner option.

Jun 30, 2015
Blumie in New Orleans
1

Sunny Boy does perfect eggs over easy

It's more than just wet (although I agree that not cooking the daylights out of the eggs is a big start), it's also technique.

Jun 30, 2015
Blumie in Greater Boston Area

NOLA food porn

Jun 24, 2015
Blumie in New Orleans

stores that sell live blue crabs in Brooklyn?

I recently saw live crabs -- not sure of the variety -- at Metropolitan Fish Market, on Metropolitan Avenue at the corner of Leonard St. in W'burg. I'd give them a call.

Address: 635 Metropolitan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211
Phone:+1 718-387-6835

Jun 24, 2015
Blumie in Outer Boroughs

Tujaques. Yes, bad meal is possible in N.O.

I mostly love that you know what a Panamax is. (Perhaps that's common knowledge given the historical importance of NOLA's port!)

Jun 24, 2015
Blumie in New Orleans
1

Sunny Boy does perfect eggs over easy

It's so hard to find places that do eggs well, including "soft" scrambled eggs (which, relatively speaking are labor intensive, because you can never let the eggs just sit in the pan; you have to keep moving them), and good fluffy omelets (the old Jury's hotel used to make really good ones; no idea if they're equally good at the new iteration of that hotel).

Can anyone vouch for the omelets here?

Jun 24, 2015
Blumie in Greater Boston Area

New Orleans Trip Recommendations

Ah, that makes sense. That construction is pretty nasty. I imagine, though, that they'll have to have Napoleon Ave put back together in time for parade season (perhaps at the expense of those dealing with the construction further uptown?!?!).

Jun 23, 2015
Blumie in New Orleans

New Orleans Trip Recommendations

hazelhurst, what's the story with that? Weren't all the tracks rebuilt post-k?

Jun 23, 2015
Blumie in New Orleans

Quick trip report from BA visitor

The hipster thing doesn't bother me if the product is good. And while I suspected it's been getting popular, I've been three or four times and never have experienced much in terms of crowds or waits. That said, I agree that it's not a good souvenir choice; I've yet to find the donut that's nearly as good on day 2 as on day 1.

Jun 23, 2015
Blumie in New Orleans

Quick trip report from BA visitor

I don't understand your comment about District. They have good sliders and great coffee. And people seem to love their donuts. Is there a problem with that?

Jun 23, 2015
Blumie in New Orleans

Zagat's top 50

I don't mean to suggest that it's solely the result of PR, but I certainly believe that PR plays a role in the popularity of restaurants. I see it all the time in NYC: new restaurants with experienced PR firms are incredibly at creating a positive "buzz" well before the place even opens. By the time they unlock the doors for the first time, there already are lines down the block. That said, many (unfortunately not all) quality restaurants will be discovered even in the absence of a big PR spend.

Jun 19, 2015
Blumie in Greater Boston Area

Zagat's top 50

Zagat, unless they're lying to us, is a survey of voluntary participants. They're not making their own editorial decisions on which places make the top 50. So if it seems that Zagat is the agent of restaurant PR folks, it's only because diners are constantly swayed by the restaurant PR folks (and I honestly believe that they are).

Jun 18, 2015
Blumie in Greater Boston Area

New Orleans Trip Recommendations

My votes:

Dinners at Clancy's, Coquette, Brigtsen's, Sylvain, and Bacchanal. The first three are more fancy; the latter two (especially Bacchanal) are more casual.

Lunch at Cochon Butcher. If you do a lunch at Commander's, don't do it the same day as one of the fancier dinners.

Breakfast at Surrey's.

Jun 18, 2015
Blumie in New Orleans
1

Spaghetti & Meatballs

It's certainly better than bad, and I have voluntarily gone when I had a craving for veal parm without having to venture far from the area. But how one can walk into that sterile, coporate-designed dining room and feel anything other than soulless chain is a mystery to me. But I guess we're allowed to disagree on that, no?

Jun 18, 2015
Blumie in Greater Boston Area

Penn Station - Sushi

I forget names, but there's passable sushi on 28th between 7th and 8th, and on 36th (or is it 35th?) just west of Broadway.

Jun 17, 2015
Blumie in Manhattan

Spaghetti & Meatballs

No offense to those that are fans, but I can't allow all of this praise to be heaped on Maggiano's without opining that it's a soulless, mediocre chain, IMHO. It could be far worse than it is, but I would never confuse it with chow-worthy food.

Jun 17, 2015
Blumie in Greater Boston Area

First date restaurants

So what happened at Giorgione? Pasta overcooked? Pizza burned?

Jun 17, 2015
Blumie in Manhattan

First date restaurants

Lavagna, in the East Village, is relatively convenient to both the West Village and the UES and is a great first date place.

Jun 17, 2015
Blumie in Manhattan

Quiet meeting over coffee in or near Grand Central

FIKA worked out fine, although $5.75 for a 2-shot latte -- albeit a good one -- is 20-25% more expensive than I'm used to paying! (And two shots is fairly standard at most premium coffee shops; it's generally only at Starbucks where one has to pay for the second shot.)

Jun 17, 2015
Blumie in Manhattan

Whitefish Salad

Thanks. I know where I'm gonna be on Friday morning.

Jun 16, 2015
Blumie in Manhattan

Quiet meeting over coffee in or near Grand Central

Good call. I think this'll be perfect. Ground Central looks great, but Fika is much more convenient.

Jun 15, 2015
Blumie in Manhattan

Spaghetti & Meatballs

Don't have a large enough sample to opine on "best," but Basta Pasta certainly makes a more-than-credible version.

Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

I love the chocolate chip cookies at Pret a Manger. Good enough that I'm happy not to look elsewhere.

Edited to add: Good to see that I'm consistent. Made a similar observation in this same thread eight years ago!

Jun 14, 2015
Blumie in Manhattan

Quiet meeting over coffee in or near Grand Central

Just looking for a place where we can have a little privacy and a little quiet (which rules out Starbucks, which always plays its music too loud). Good coffee would be a plus, but privacy and quiet are more important. Maybe the coffee bar in the Westin hotel on 42nd?

Jun 11, 2015
Blumie in Manhattan

Revisiting Lumiere in West Newton

Just want to report that I took my parents back to Lumiere again this past weekend and we had another great meal. They had softshell crab on the menu, offered either as an appetizer (one crab) or an entree (two crabs), and they were wonderful.

Jun 09, 2015
Blumie in Greater Boston Area

NorCal Hounds with kids heading to NOLA: Feedback on my proposed plan, please!

Replying to my own reply: I see that you are now going without kids, so Bacchanal would now be a great option! (Rio Mar, however, still is gone, whether or not you have kids, as is the restaurant the Rio Mar team replaced it with, the more casual Tacos & Tequila!)

Jun 08, 2015
Blumie in New Orleans