New York Magazine's Grub Street blog has a little interview with Michael Rankin, a waiter at Brooklyn eatery Diner. In it he discusses his various celebrity encounters and gives some behind-the-scenes restaurant dish. He talks about how the restaurant basically served Superbad's McLovin' alcohol, even though he is woefully underage. It's also a pretty efficient reminder that not every waiter is Noam Chomsky. A favorite quote: "I love getting people from out of town — I can tell they're freaked out because their waiter just sat down next to them. They look completely shocked and terrified." Now they've seen everything! [Grub Street]
It's bikini season! And Agyness Deyn, this month's UK Vogue covergirl who is pretty much America's real-life next top model even though she is British, is celebrating by eating just like a normal person. Well, a normal British person, but still. In the past week, she has consumed cheese and ham dumplings, beans on toast, sushi, pizza, a Cobb salad, pancakes with scrambled eggs, vegan strawberry-cheesecake ice cream, and a roast dinner that included "Yorkshire pudding, roast beef, vegetables, stuffing, gravy, and roast potatoes." So maybe you have that muffintop because there isn't enough beef dripping in your diet?
Server Lynnea Scalora is feeling alienated from her labor: "When you're a server, you're someone's slave," she tells Grub Street. Why does she feel this way? Probably because she works at Enid's, which as any Greenpoint/Wburg resident can tell you is the innermost circle of brunch hell. The restaurant epitomizes everything that's wrong with the brunch ritual: insanely long waits, ostentatiously hip crowds reeking of booze from the night before, lots of sceneiness and and little emphasis on, you know, food-eating. Scalora has an interesting take on what makes Enid's patrons so intolerable, and maybe also some insight into why the wait is so long.
David Cross, the scamp of a comedian who's frequently spotted out and about in his East Village neighborhood, just made it a lot easier to stalk him! Not that you would. But in case you're curious about where to find him, or maybe just about where to eat eggs on the weekend, here's some advice: "While people wait for upwards of an hour and a half to eat at Clinton St. Bakery—which is great by the way—I choose to say, "Fuck that" and head to Lil' Frankie's for an immediate plate of eggs Parmesan or eggs pomodoro." This advice might work slightly less well if you're not a celebrity, or in this case David Cross, but whatever! Also in this interview, David cops to enjoying red wine with every meal, which might explain his equating pork fat with "angel's ejaculate."
Over at Grub Street today, two highly esteemed foodies/ cultural commentators dished about which dishy Top Chef finalist's dishes they had found most compelling. The conversation ran to the innovations of Marcel's foamspiration, Ferran Adria, and whether either finalist could actually run a restaurant (for the record: no. They think Sam could, though: "He's forceful but noncommittal, in a passive-aggressive way.") But it was when talking about villainous caricature Marcel that the discourse took a turn for the, ah, rigorously intellectual:
Lately, we'd found ourselves wondering whether broke-down songbird Britney Spears likes to drink alcohol. Luckily, Grub Street's reliably awesome Ask A Server column has finally answered that burning question, via their interview with Dirty Delta, a waitress at famed E. Vil drag queen restaurant Lucky Cheng's.
Grub Street goes deep today, probing the eating habits of Joanna Angel (of Burning Angel fame). Joanna's eating seems pretty Williamsburg-centric, which makes sense: that's where her office is. She tries to keep it healthy — "I ate a bagel from the Bagelsmith — I get egg whites and cheese on an everything bagel. I'm trying to stay in shape, considering my job and all," — but like all of us, she's prone to late-night fast food bingeing:
We like the oddball food trend piece as much as the next person, but the latest Japanese-imported supposed fad tests the limits of our (and, ostensibly, Grub Street's Daniel Maurer's) endurance. The foodstuff in question? "Cod milt, also known as shirako, also known as kiku, also known as — okay, no getting around it — cod sperm." How is the cod milt harvested, and how is it prepared/served? The piece provides no answers, opting to focus instead on listing a litany of other phallic foodstuffs, like bull penis. By way of conclusion, Maurer asserts that " izakayas (and cod sperm) are having their moment." We don't know — since we haven't yet read about 'milt' elsewhere, this kind of reeks of a constructed fad to us. Long story short: we're not swallowing it.
Insults at Mario Batali's celeb roast at Capitale last night ranged from lame: "What are you trying to be, the Chris Farley of the Food Network?" — to slightly less lame: "You look like Kiefer Sutherland after he was stung by bees." But one zinger actually made us LOL — and it's courtesy of mild-mannered Queer Eye (remember those guys?) Ted Allen, of all people:
"The whole idea behind the bar-restaurant is bringing things back to NYC, like American and New York things." That's Paul Sevigny (who probably resents that he needs to be formally identified as Chlo 's brother first, member of A.R.E. Weapons second), discussing his new, so topsecretshhhh! bar-restaurant with Grub Street's resident Gawker Hottie, Daniel Maurer. The old Beatrice Inn was a crappy Italian restaurant, beloved of old-school (okay, maybe just 'old') West Villagers for its quietness and unpretentiousness — the very attributes, of course, that Sevigny's revamp is stripping away. To wit: a party for Courtney Love has already been thrown there. The menu includes old-school favorites and cutesy nods to Newyorkania like a vanilla vodka egg cream. Long story short? Suggest it, not La Esquina or Freeman's, to friends who you're desperately trying to convince that you're cooler than you actually are.
New York mag's Grub Street had an item yesterday on a taping of Iron Chef America, which ended with, in their own, albeit with tongue somewhat in cheek, "earth shattering revelation".