June 15, 2016
The weather’s been radiant, so bright and fresh it pulls me outside, enticing me to wander the city. Days like these, passing people offer secret smiles to one another; aren’t we lucky?
My day began at Sadelle’s with the best bagel I’ve ever eaten. It makes those soft, slack, silly circles that masquerade as bagels hang their heads in shame. It’s got such tooth and flavor I’m tempted to simply eat a naked bagel. But that would be sad when there’s Sadelle’s salmon, supple as silk and barely salty, just waiting to perch on top. Excellent egg salad is also on offer, and it proves another worthy partner to these sublime little rings.
A walk through SoHo, an encounter with that curious black cat on Spring Street, and down the Bowery to Little Italy. I’m headed for my favorite city shop, Di Palo’s, where there’s always something new to taste, always lots to learn. Today Lou’s cutting a golden wheel of autumn parmigiano: rich and crumbly, it tastes like concentrated sunshine. Afterwards some of Di Palo’s just-made mozzarella. Never refrigerated, it sits on the counter weeping milk, too voluptuous to contain its own richness.
Down Elizabeth Street, through teeming streets, to Dynasty, a raucous Chinese emporium that’s like a quick trip to Hong Kong. Tripe, sausage, black chickens, goose intestines…. they have it all.
Pork uterus anyone?
And then a turn north, to dinner at Upland. I don’t think Justin Smilie has ever made a dish I didn’t like, but for me it’s impossible not order his crazy mushroom: a huge hen-of-the-woods, crisply fried and served with soft fresh cloumage cheese.
But it’s Justin’s smoked duck with cherries, a new dish, that takes my breath away. Where has this version of the bird – like the most intense bacon I’ve ever eaten – been hiding all my life?
And finally, I stop in at Maysville for a nightcap; a little hit from their astonishing bourbon collection is an extremely satisfying way to say good night.
Categorised in: Things I Love