Category Archives: Supporting local dining establishments by avoiding chain eateries. Homesteading in the city.

BP, Aunt Bea and Me:

Bestbitesclub

Village Market At Shelton Vineyards.

BP Aunt Bea and Me

Money talks but it can’t sing, nor dance nor walk but walk on out with me it did after wanting desperately to be spent in this cutesie attachment market to the BP anchor.

The green varnish upon the westerly barnish structure in poedunk USA stood out like no other I’d seen in my north south (vice versa) travels, leaving me wanting to explore the wares they peddled.
Greeted with a Mayberry welcome sign hung above the door and bottles of red wine one foot in and I thought I’ve reached gas station Shangri La. Pleasantville by all outward appearances right here in west, West Virginia or was it Dobson, northern North Carolina? — I can almost smell the aroma of baked apples and peaches and butter — they’re Aunt Bee’s pies cooling on the sill, partially covered with a white…

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BP, Aunt Bea and Me:

Village Market At Shelton Vineyards.

BP Aunt Bea and Me

Money talks but it can’t sing, nor dance nor walk but walk on out with me it did after wanting desperately to be spent in this cutesie attachment market to the BP anchor.

The green varnish upon the westerly barnish structure in poedunk USA stood out like no other I’d seen in my north south (vice versa) travels, leaving me wanting to explore the wares they peddled.
Greeted with a Mayberry welcome sign hung above the door and bottles of red wine one foot in and I thought I’ve reached gas station Shangri La. Pleasantville by all outward appearances right here in west, West Virginia or was it Dobson, northern North Carolina? — I can almost smell the aroma of baked apples and peaches and butter — they’re Aunt Bee’s pies cooling on the sill, partially covered with a white quilted napkin.

Then — Poooof…

Empty inside, nobody shopping nor sitting for a bite — maybe its location — it’s maybe their way, but the chill of cool interest in answering a question is leaving me lonely and frostbitten still.
Counter woman didn’t come to the register as she sneered a bit, furrowed her brow in my direction prior to begrudgingly departing her deep lean chat with a cow poke chewing a wad of Copenhagen the size of a shot class & using the ‘leave a penny take a penny’ tray as a spitoon.
A classy move all the way. So much promise and add another letdown to my life to be. Pish Posh on them.


Chikarashi

Come inside for some fresh Poke Bowls.

PONZU Salmon Bowl.

The wind blowing down Broadway’s halls were fierce, the grumbling in my tummy, more fierce, and it’s noon time — eateries are packed — I know because I walked into – and out of – three of them already. No premeditated decisions, and I’m a bit panicky and am too close for comfort to all the sneezing and sniffling.

I just came from blocks of textiles and perfumes and the eateries ahead are thinning it seems. Turning left, it was a bright red neon sign that grabbed my attention, I gave no thought other than my last chance — I rushed in and I collided with a body on a line just a step inside the door.
Privately cursing my lack of direction and current state of feeling, I shuffle walked to the counter pondering how little I think of the Poke word – not any of it appeals to me. But po(horseshoe character)’kie being the actual made me very happy, it sounds ancient, and nerds won’t irresponsibly flood the streets.

I’ve really never had a Poke(ie) Bowl, fish and rice is nice in theory but I questioned its filling properties. A large Ponzu Salmon bowl before me, I explored with my chopsticks with some prodding, light delicate lifting and moved in closer. I couldn’t identify much and that’s a good thing, so with an unmighty swoop, I began thusly.

The menu reads, Scottish salmon, wasabi ponzu, shiso, kyuri, tibiko, katsuo panko, I’m embarrassed to admit how little I know of this world.
The salmon lightly dissolved on my tongue with a beautiful clean far Atlantic finish, yet strong in structure. How the textures and flavors came together was like a symphony in my mouth, but interrupted each time my sticks ran aground on the buried bowl dividers below, like the separation compartments of 1970s TV dinners, or any meals when shackled.

Much to learn young Jedi, much to learn and I must. But in terms of a proper launching point, I deem this days lunch a success.


ADVENTURE LAND 110 on Long Island

I guess I fit the “former rides” category as my first memories were always sprung upon my sister and my first cousins and I from the lunch table Grandma’s house. Grandma lived in da hood, but gentrification is not an important bone of contention at seven years young and, to the best of my infant intellect and knowledge, drive-bys weren’t invented yet.

I remember the kiddie boats, The Galaxy and some ride with a purple smiling caterpillar head. It was a great time for me as cutting grass for hours on end for a grape soda and a bologna sandwich was a kinda wack way to spend my summer Saturdays.

I returned years later in my early 20s, and I’m not sure why I was there. I had no kids, I knew no kids, grand-folk long since kicked the bucket. I’m guessing a college break, day trip with my other underachieving droogs and chelovecks all smiley with Maui Wowie.

The changes in terms of the mechanics in the guts of the rides were tremendously improved, no more sideways whiplash as your aquatic or non slammed into the wooden side running boards on every entry into any turn, “made me who I am today” I’d like to say to someone.

It’s not Bush Gardens, it’s not even Cedar Point but for what it’s worth, for the kids, it sure beats doing nuthin’.


A Brazilian Market in Goose Creek..

Red Bank Road in Goose Creek, SC.

Two very definite “no no’s” I’ve come to terms with yet continue to break on a regular basis. (See the bottom*)

I’m a New Yorker, born in Brooklyn, I understand parking that is — let’s just say — well, there really is no easy way of saying what I really want to say, but probably shouldn’t, so I won’t, begrudgingly. This lot requires air support, as you pull up over an embankment, before you ascertain if you can even enter the reverse, forward, left, right automotive contusions in this haphazard parking gauntlet.

Once inside, four double sided perfectly orderly and well groomed shelves greet you. Most items, as one would expect, revolve around Brazilian cuisine — cooking at home. There is even an aisle dedicated to proper cooking utensils, pots, pans, pressure cookers, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

What really brought the sizzle for the steak to me was definitely the butcher department and just how beautiful all of the meats were. Three rib-eyes and a few links of sausage thrown over my shoulder and I headed to the counter with a bottle of “English sauce”, which I assumed was in the Worcestershire sauce family and was gravely mistaken, I squirted on the below mentioned peculiarity dry-ish mystery meat. That chestnut brown fermented liquid looked so gosh darn familiar–bloody good, Gov..

I’m still not completely sure, yet it was as common enough to them to have it right in your mug, the dark brown dry mystery meat, just left of checkout, in its own glass house and for some reason I began to daydream about how Gob Stoppers might work well right about now, you know, to induce moisture and how much it resembled a round Milky Way but with nuts partially sticking out.

The banner behind the counter where my new pal Louis was working is the Brazilian equivalent of our Western Union, if your wondering.
I macked down darkish meat n grainy sausage looking item in the reach in glass heating machine and used my 5 words of Portuguese on Lou, I’d like to think he was impressed — reality tells me otherwise.

“I got cred yo” I felt like saying. “I worked on 45th street between 5th and 6th, 46th is Little Brazil, I’m down with your Flan brah”. (Manhattan of course) But I decided to keep that little nugget to myself, boy did he miss out.

It’s unfortunate that some locals, those unfortunate few critrers with the culinary palate of a 3rd grader actually shop across the street at Food Lion. Food herecy I say, but I guess you have to actually leave your state at least once in your lives to understand any of this.
Break the chain everyone, support your single store operations, shout it to the mountains –and read my blog where the real ranting takes place. (I like it there — I can do and say whatever pleases me.)

*1. When in an ethnically diverse business, refrain from speaking and continuing such behavior unimpeded — before asking if they speak English. Or get the blank stare which says “what the hell is this tall, long haired maniac saying to me?”
2. Ask permission before shutter-bugging photos with machine gunning repetition. (Hmm I say — perhaps it’s the long hair, bulked size and Merciful Fate tee)
The bottom line is that we are all just buddy buddy after I explain this behavior is to their benefit. I’m tired of explaining, I think I’ll have something printed up, words are 2 precious to me and I don’t like to repeat myself. It’s just a preference..


Williamsburg Bridge Reflections.

115 years old – and a few face-lifts later.

One hundred and fifteen years and a few face lifts later, we rumbled across her and over the East River late the other night. I don’t recall seeing the tracks for the J and Z trains that come subterranean and appear drivers side left only to quickly disappear back into their dark depths before we enter on Delancy. I wonder if they’ve been rerouted, I find myself missing the nostalgia of it all, the shrieking of steel against steel, the flashes of electric sparks.

Nightly crossings of The Willie B are far from new experiences as years back, my fellow droogs and chelovecks and I bounced along the bars of the Bowery. We slam-danced and brawled at CBGB’s hitting them all with the misto, we spun the wheel only to drink from a boot or a toilet bowl (not an actual toilet bowl, but yes to an actual boot) at Aces & Eights, danced and drank till dawn at FLOAT and CHAOS and that’s just a light glazing over, of our downtown – Lower East Side frolicking activities — ah yes, those were the days and not a single name remains.

This night, so many years later, I drive over the Willie B and it’s lit with an outline of pink and a electric lime green, to what holiday or event the colors are speaking to, I haven’t a clue, I don’t want to know. I’m getting a sinking feeling in the pit of my gut and wonder what’s causing it.
It’s many things I suppose, but more than any single disturbance in the force, it’s the knowledge that it appears to no longer be a city that I am connected with. NYC is a city my family has lived in and served in and was a part of creating for over three hundred years, we have an avenue to our name and it’s in the wrong hands.

So off I go, pulling up the remaining roots behind me to stuff them in a sack to be replanted somewhere else.

“So Long and Thanks For All the Fish” – HHG2TG, it’s the message the dolphins leave before they depart


Burger Barn N.C.

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I knew it at the time as much as I know it now and as much as it bothers me, I’m not changing the fact that I spelled cheeseburger incorrectly. And nobody called me out on it. (I was driving, the sun was in my eyes, the elevation caused light-headedness and much more) The call out person would have levitated from parts unknown to reach me with the secret piece of jagged gold locket that fit my other half perfectly — true love.. Only pulling your lariats, I love you all..

I’d have bet dollars to donuts after observing the barn that Burger Barn would have had me saying “where are my socks?” As in ‘knocking them off’, well – not exactly, due to a smidge of too much grill time. Big thick burgers are not to my liking either, this was not that, as there’s usually issues in the middle. So the double or triple stacked mid bovine grind are more my preference, assuming cook temp is shy of Chernobyl. My double was a bit well done, but the free fixings options righted the ship quicklike.

Leave it to the gastronomic genius over here to order a Philly cheese steak at a burger joint. (Oh crap, am I spelling this wrong too, are the words connected? I’m loosing it folks, and at such a young age too, pity, pity. Well, at least I have my looks — no, wait, they’re gone too. I’ll get back to ya on that one)

I just wanted something I had fond memories of as the weighted down wagon rumbled Northbound — anybody remember SteakUms?

Au jus would have had tremendous redeeming qualities, as was pointed out by a SC homie of mine. But for road food and to support local business, I’ll go that route all day long.


Once Village Market

Click the link for a 5 star review by: Glenn Van Nostrand

https://www.yelp.com/biz/olde-village-market-and-deli-north-charleston?hrid=WsGxtb1GsGNFb2c0ZwIjzg&utm_source=ashare&ref=yelp-android


And Now She’s a Teenager.

With eyes raised, her Masters look to scan.

The joy — the solice, the aid of man.

The richmans guardian, the poor man’s friend —

The only creature faithful to the End.

Happy 13th Birthday to my Sydney.

Let’s go for another 13 my LOVING pup.


Stoners Pizza Dude

 

 

Over thirteen hundred reviews on YELP later and now I’m thinking “have I reviewed food that has reached me by delivery?” And I can not say for sure that I am completely certain that I have or certain that I have not.

Pecking in my choices of size, bread, sauce and toppings and tip into my phone was quite seamless. And now the clock starts and they’ve projected for me a ten minute window, thirty five minutes out. Forty minutes later, there was a jingle at my door. Super friendly fellow, represented his company and himself very well.

The pepperoni ring pattern of round and round around the pizza we go can be your laying technique, but the look to me is damaging — I prefer a more random and rustic look myself. Extra cheese is just the darnedest extra topping to add because you never really get it, you always get charged and no recourse for them possibly cheating you out of it, but I do it anyway.

The crust sagged a bit, the cheese wasn’t exactly of the quality I’d had thought they would use. The sauce just kinda sat in the background and lingered like the last party guest that isn’t leaving and isn’t getting the picture that it’s time. There is just so little to say.