Fab New York Fooderies

Great Midtown Lunches

  • Kati Rolls: 46th Street between 6th & 7th Aves. “Indian wraps”.
  • Island Burger: huge variety of tasty burgers and they don’t sell chips!
  • Baluchi’s: excellent curry house, and the entire menu is half-price at lunchtime.

Great, Inexpensive Food, Anytime!

  • Shake Shack: A burger & milk-shake specialist in Madison Square Park. Unlike Island Burger, the main variety here is in how large your burger will be, but it’s a delicious burger, served with very tasty chips. Be warned: it’s so good that there have been huge queues whenever I’ve walked past, unless it’s raining… 🙁
  • John’s Pizzeria, 278 Bleeker: Recommended by a friend-of-a-friend, we had amazingly tasty Italian-style pizza here during my visit last May; unfortunately I’ve not yet had chance to return.
  • Lupe’s East LA Kitchen: Tasty Mexican food and excellent imported Mexican beer!
  • Chinese Fast Wok: Not a great place to eat-in, but awesome value tasty take-out.

Nice Dinners

  • Bettola: Superb Italian food which reminded me of many meals in Italy. Located on the Upper West side, it’s wood-burning oven and slightly cramped tables gave it a lovely cosy atmosphere.
  • Lasagna Ristorante: A pleasant and inexpensive Italian specialising in lasagne and other pasta dishes within walking distance of “home”.

“The Nation’s Capital” (Part 1)

[The first weekend Rosie was visiting we went to Washington D.C. although sadly it has taken until now for me to find time to blog about the trip.]

Our trip got off to an inauspicious start as, after rushing home from work on Friday night and back to Penn station, our train was about 45 mins late arriving from Boston and it then took quite a while to find any free seats. Fortunately, our hotel, The Carlyle Suites, turned out to be very nice, and arriving just before midnight, we decided to save our first exploration for Saturday morning.
Continue reading ““The Nation’s Capital” (Part 1)”

Raining Cats & Dogs

Britain is famous for its rain, but it rarely rains really heavily for an entire day like it has done here, today — the puddles are so big the pavements are practically flooded! The forcast is “rain”, “heavy rain” and more “rain” through ’til Saturday too; I never thought I would be find myself missing the British weatherman’s favourite of “Sunshine & showers”…

(P.S. when (if?) the rain does stop I guess I shall have to pay another visit to the Apple store! Apple unveils video iPods and Home Entertainment hub.)

New York Update

Apologies for the lack of recent updates, but with Rosie visiting for two weeks I’ve been far too busy doing things to write about any of them! Unfortunately Rosie has now gone back to Cambridge leaving me with little excuse to put off various work-related tasks any longer… 🙁 A quick summary of touristy-things we did:

  • One Wednesday we abandoned our regular footie game to experiment with two other forms of football, American and rugby (both in their “touch” form, not full-contact!). After much confusion of these games’ horrendously complicated rules, we decided to stick to the beautiful game.
  • We went to see some live music—a festival of top Chicago bands— at the famous Arlene’s Grocery. (We even got to meet one of the bands as my colleague’s uncle was the lead singer of one of them!)
  • We did a weekend of intensive tourism in Washington D.C. (more on that in another post).
  • We hung out and window shopped in SoHo (there’s an Apple Store… so many beautiful gadgets!)
  • We took a ‘Lights of New York’ cruise around Manhatten to admire the pretty buildings all lit up. (This was really impressive as you get a very different perspective a couple of hundred metres off the island compared to when you’re actually in amongst it all!)
  • We saw the Yankees beat the Baltimore Orioles 2-1 at baseball (I’m still not convinced this is actually a sport: absolutely nothing happens for long periods of time, then there are a few plays of incredible tension, then it’s time for a change and the atmosphere is gone… Nice excuse to hang out with friends and drink beer though!)
  • We partied with my colleagues, including a trip to Cafe Wha for more great music, amongst other places.
  • We ate some very good Italian food!

All-in-all, it was a very busy, but highly enjoyable two weeks — work can get so busy sometimes it was nice to have someone else to organise my social life for me!

Serenity

There are two sorts of people in the world: those who believe Joss Whedon is a genius and those who are wrong. – Connie Ogle in the Miama Herald, Friday 30th September 2005.

I am a firm believer in Joss Whedon being a genius, and so I was eager to see “Serenity”, the movie spin-off the cult-hit (but short-lived) TV series, Firefly.

For fans of the TV series, the film finally answers all those questions that were left unanswered by its cancellation and the subtle witty touches and powerful, thoughtful dialogue is as present on the big screen as on the small. Unfortunately witty touches and powerful dialogue aren’t enough to keep a viewer’s interest for a whole 2 hours and Serenity fails to really make the transition from TV to film. Joss Whedon has created some intriguing and realistic characters but the pace required to drive forward a single two-hour story leaves little room for the slow growth and development that make his TV programmes so addictive.

It’s not a bad film — certainly one of the most original concepts to be released this year (are they really so desperate they’re making a film about Doom?!) — but the story isn’t grand and epic enough to grip the attention for two hours, and the character development feels rushed, a year’s worth of incremental growth shoe-horned into a single storyline. I enjoyed it, as will everyone else who has watched the TV series, but sadly I don’t think it will appeal to people who aren’t familiar with Firefly.