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Posts tagged ‘dallas bbq’

Eaten, Barely Blogged: A Bender Just Because

When you post lots of food and drink photos (though who doesn’t anymore?) there is an assumption that you’re always out eating and drinking when in my reality there’s a good deal of cheese and crackers, eggs and bacon, yogurt, seltzer, and other mundanities consumed at home.

dallas bbq pina colada

But when visitors are around who think you’re perpetually having fun, you might have to give them the full eight-hour bender experience, day job be damned. This is now your job. What started out as an innocent lunch break across the street at my favorite regional chain Dallas BBQ (one piña colada) resulted in a two-borough excursion that served to blow the mind (and health) of a long-distance old friend-turned-boyfriend who hadn’t drank for the 25 years leading up to our reconnecting in January. I’m a horrible influence, no question.

jimmy's duo

Jimmy’s Corner (one Sam Adams, two Maker’s on the rocks), not just the best boxing bar in Times Square but possibly the best bar in Times Square period (this is a great recent ode) carried me into oyster happy hour territory but Cull & Pistol, where I was lured by a friend, was too crowded and I wasn’t hungry anyway after ribs and fries, so Corner Bistro minus the burger (two McSorley’s dark ales) became stop #3 for a little anti-Dallas BBQ atmosphere.sea wolf duo

Yet oysters (and two $5 frozen Painkillers) ended up happening anyway at Sea Wolf, the newish beachy restaurant off the Jefferson St. L where getting off the train I came face to face with a coworker whose name I don’t know and initially made me panic since I was being a truant but by 6:30pm I was in the clear. A barely perceptible nod of acknowledgement was sufficient. The point of Bushwick was to hit a few vintage stores, something I haven’t done in decades, and fittingly demonstrate what the Portland of NYC looks like (equally young with free-time during the day, better educated and likely to be secretly wealthy, far dirtier and more industrial, less white, duh).

tomo sushi

By this point, rando sushi seemed like a good idea and a sandwich board on the sidewalk worked its magic. Shared rolls (and a Sapporo) at Tomo just opened the floodgates, though, and Dorito ramen (oops, carbonara) at King Noodle, a few doors down, started seemingly like an even better idea, except I forgot that they had tempered the kitsch a while back and now the menu was more straightforward Asian, slightly SE. Oh, but thank god, and thank you, if you made it this far because the whole point of this exercise is this: ma po tofu fries!

king noodle trio

This is my kind of junk food: melted, processed cheese and fried starch and intensely seasoned ground meat. I love salty soy (fish sauce ideally) with melted cheese and a little (a lot really) heat. Ok, the overriding theme was salt in all the dishes, in an extreme way that was too much in the Spam fried rice and Chinese broccoli with oyster sauce (a nod to health). Maybe not the lemongrass wings, which felt a little wan in comparison, probably because I’d lost all taste for subtlety at this point. (Eaten with coconut porter and a second completely unnecessary beer in a style that I don’t remember since it was the eleventh drink of the day.)

me at king noodle

Drink #10, still going strong. There’s no way to make the neon lighting flattering.

Once you start binging at 1pm, you’ll get tired unless you keep up a steady pace. It may seem dangerous, but the beauty is that you’ll probably make it home by 10pm and get a full eight hours to digest all that sodium, fat, and alcohol and will wake up feeling only sort of like crap (but maybe not at all depending how far from middle-age you might be). To really tempt fate, you can start again the next day but two back-to-back benders is my maximum as a non-young, employed person. Most importantly, I really impressed a now-drinking, self-described Country Mouse (only if you consider Portland’s outskirts country) into boxing, whose going out consists primarily of ramen with his kids, with my fortitude and disregard for work ethics and diet. 

Color Me Bad: Easter’s Most Wanted Purples

This ube ice cream sandwich (should really just start calling this Ube Patrol) currently at OddFellows Sandwich Shop was my pick for amazing purple edible thing of the week. A Danny Bowien/Sam Mason co-creation, it also includes coconut dulce de leche and shiso granola, and I want it.

But then Dallas BBQ posted a purple long island iced tea, and in its own typical lily-gilding fashion, adds a Peep, shot of rum, and upturned bottle of moscato. Wow?

Um, and there’s a Dallas BBQ just four blocks from OddFellows…

Something to Be Thankful For: Dallas BBQ & White Castle

If you tag the Rego Park Dallas BBQ in Instagram, the default location reads Dallas BBQ’s, superfluous apostrophe S and all, which is the most Dallas BBQ thing ever. I also didn’t really mean to go to Dallas BBQ on Thanksgiving. This wasn’t some long-planned, overwrought performance piece. (If anything, it’s becoming a problem. I’m not necessarily saying the two are directly related, but I’ve mentioned Hennessy Coladas twice on Tinder recently and both times I’ve been ultimately rebuffed, one going as far as unmatching me. I can’t waste time on someone who can’t hang with Dallas BBQ. It’s my new test.)  There just weren’t enough people to cook for this year to make it worth my while, I’d rather spend $100+ on a restaurant meal not involving turkey (not to mention the few more casual places I did inquire about were already booked) and my fellow orphaned New Yorker amenable to dining out could appreciate the simple charm of a $15.99 spread, most bases covered, no heirloom root vegetables, heritage breeds, or wine-soaked gelées. dallas bbq thanks duo You first receive a cup of chicken soup, carrot coins and celery ribs boiled to cafeteria-soft consistency. The first course is followed by a massive heap of bread mush stuffing (I’m of the crispy bits, recognizable crusts school) draped with slices of turkey breast moistened with thin gravy and punched up with a good deal of chopped parsley for color, a yam big enough for two, cranberry relish that was a little wilder, with walnuts, and what were clearly once whole berries, served in a plastic container, and a BBQ-appropriate square of cornbread. This was the second Thanksgiving meal this year I’d encountered with no mashed potatoes. Has double starch gone the way of canned cranberry sauce? thanksgiving sweets Dessert was no more than a wee pumpkin spice cupcake so inconsequential I forgot about it. Not a complaint. I planned ahead by making my own dessert, a pecan-pepita chocolate pie with a gingersnap crust, heavy on the molasses, bolstered by some pastries from La Gran Uruguaya on my corner that was thankfully open the morning of the 26th because I forgot to go on Wednesday and went out for happy hour oysters instead.

Two days post-Thanksgiving I was given the opportunity to finally make a variation on the White Castle stuffing I’ve had my eye on for years and that is far better than one would expect considering the ingredients. You use sliders, no cheese, and don’t include pickles, though the ketchup does throw it off a bit with tangy sweetness. I added a pound of sauteed cremini, a cup and a half each of chopped white onion and celery, just enough chicken broth to add to the liquid released from the mushrooms (more if you do like that mushier texture) a little thyme and paprika, plus fresh sage that seems to disappear no matter how much you toss in. A little sage normally goes a long way, but use more than might seem correct to make this taste like stuffing not hamburger bread pudding.