Tuesday, September 14, 2010

the commodore

after joe and i had our discussion about southern food, i felt like maybe i should just give up trying all of these places in new york for southern food. maybe it was hopeless, i mean...it's not like you can find REALLY good pizza in the south, right?

sunday morning joe asked me if i wanted to accompany him to this record fair that he had a table at. usually i would be quick to say "HELL NO" but it was our only day off together and since he's leaving for new orleans next week on my other days off, i decided to go with it (plus i had some records i wanted to unload, two birds-one stone). he also mentioned that it was being held at the commodore, another southern influenced restaurant i had heard much about and had been dying to try since i saw an article mentioning them in the july 1st issue of new york magazine.

(a picture i took to remind myself to try this restaurant)

still feeling jaded over the whole pies 'n' thighs fiasco, i made sure my expectations were at an all time low so i wouldn't be disappointed again. we arrived at the record fair around 12:30 and had to wait until 4 for the kitchen to open.

i peeped the menu out and went to the bar to place my order. i decided to just go for it, order the fried chicken! what's the worst that can happen - it sucks? been there, done that. it's ok, atleast now i'll know. at 10 dollars, it's worth the shot.

this arrived at my table and i knew i made the right choice. the outside was so crispy and hot and salty, i felt like i had died and gone to heaven. the meat was juicy and tender and almost melted in my mouth. and their hot sauce was delicious! commodore knows what's up; they serve the hot sauce on the side, good thinking. the biscuits were the best biscuits i had ever tasted in my entire life, and they came with honey butter. honey and butter, never would have thought of mixing them together. genius. the potato salad was excellent, kind of a smokey flavor to it. perfect potato/dressing ratio as well.

washing it all down with some anchor steam (one of my top 3 favorite beers) we decided we needed MORE beer and MORE biscuits. hell, it was happy hour! 2 for 1 beers.. can't beat that. so we had another round and left the commodore with money in our pockets (thanks record buyers) and stomachs full of amazing southern food.

food aside, the commodore is definitely a bar i would like to frequent. it has a weird 60's-70's charlie's angels retro vibe to it, and the booths are really comfortable. everyone who worked there was super friendly, which can be hard to come by in snooty williamsburg. really great happy hour prices help too, and their normal prices aren't bad. for 1 chicken meal w/ biscuits, potato salad, 4 beers and a side order of biscuits we spent $28, very impressive.

the commodore, two very enthusiastic thumbs up.

the commodore
366 metropolitan ave (at havemeyer)
brooklyn, NY 11211
(718) 218-7632
open daily: 4pm - 4 am

Monday, September 13, 2010

overhyped 'n' disappointing

ok...i know i suck at this. i never update. but i PROMISE, it stops here. i have more reliable internet access now and starting next week i will have my very own network that will never fail me and i can blog until i'm blue in the face. now that we've discussed this, we can move on.

so usually i'm pretty reluctant to try hyped brooklyn hipster joints because .. a) they have the worst clientele in the world, b) they usually do not live up to the hype, c) regardless of my recent ramen binge- i do have a pretty refined palette! i had heard many, many things about Pies 'n' Thighs from various outlets, i even saw one of the owners on my mom's favorite tv show, "who wants to be a millionaire?". this is supposed to be THE place to go to for fried chicken, pie and other southern delights. joe and i had tried to go there a few times before but something always got in the way (they close from 4-5, couldnt find parking, wait seemed too long) so when he texted me at work on saturday and asked if i wanted to join him and our friends sami and nadia at pies 'n' thighs i was pumped 'n' ready to actually get to try it.

we arrive at pies 'n' thighs at probably the most perfect time, 6:30. nadia and sami had already secured us a table and the place wasn't that busy. we ordered sweet teas to start and peeked at the menu. not a large menu, only 9 real entree choices (grilled cheese and chicken biscuit arent my idea of an entree though). i decided i was going to go for the chicken biscuit and a side of mac and cheese. nadia and sami both chose the catfish box while joe went for the super bowl (3 sides and a biscuit). we didn't wait long for the food since it wasn't busy, which was a relief because after working in a kitchen all day long at my job, i was famished.

when my plate arrived i was confused. why is everything doused in hot sauce? didn't say so on the menu...and what if you don't LIKE hot sauce? i'm pretty picky about which ones i like so to me that was a bit presumptuous on their parts. i cut into the biscuit with the fried chicken. my first thought was "wow, hot sauce".. and then "oh, honey!" and then "ehh, this is ok". the biscuit was really good, the chicken was ok and the hot sauce was unnecessary. the touch of honey was interesting though and i liked it. my mac and cheese was also a hot sauce puddle which my tastebuds did not like at all. macaroni and cheese is perfect on it's own....it doesn't need hot sauce. take note pies 'n' thighs.

everyone seemed to think their meals were just ok. joe hated his grits (once again, the hot sauce) and i'd have to agree with him. ok, so the entrees weren't that great. but there's still another course, let's order pie!!!!

i've really been fiending for some banana pie lately (thanks Baked) so i ordered that, while sami and nadia ordered the chocolate pie. i thoroughly enjoying my banana pie topped with nilla wafers, the creaminess of the banana mixed perfectly with the almost crispy pie crust. but $5?? REALLY?? it was a very small piece. good thing it was tasty...the pie really was pies 'n' thighs only saving grace.

shortly after dropping off sami and nadia at the bedford L station, joe and i had a deep h2h about southern food in new york. it doesn't work, it will never work, just gotta get it when i'm home. (or so we thought...stay tuned..)

so after wanting to visit this place for ages, money now down the drain, all i really have to say is...
maybe they should change their name to pies 'n' hot sauce, since those seem to be the most prominent figures in their establishment.

Pies 'n' Thighs (Hot Sauce)
166 S. 4th Street (at Driggs)
Brooklyn, NY 11211

Thursday, June 10, 2010

we all scream for (vegan) ice cream!

now back to the fun stuff! recently i was reading a blog that mentioned lula's sweet apothecary, an all vegan ice cream shop in the east village. having consumed dairy for most of my life i am always weary about vegan substitutes. i'm sorry daiya, your intentions are good but your vegan cheese sucks. tofutti has mastered the cream cheese but that's about it. when it comes to dairy, it's damn hard to replace. that being said i went to lula's with an open mind, but being the cynical asshole that i am i figured this place would suck.

boy was i wrong! the menu is small, only around 10 different ice cream flavors. what they lack in variety they sure do make up for in taste. i ordered the cake batter soft serve on a sugar cone. i felt as if i was licking the spatula in my momma's kitchen while she was making me a yellow cake ( that rarely ever happened though, my mom would rather hand me 20 bucks for the store than lift a finger in the kitchen). the soft serve was soy based, and i couldn't even taste the soy milk. it was the creamiest, most decadent ice cream i've ever licked off of a cone. joe ordered the peanut butter fudge, which i believe was cashew based. it tasted exactly like what i would expect from a homemade ice cream store using real cream and real eggs. i was so astonished, and elated! i have finally found a vegan dairy substitute i can write home about! they do shakes, sundaes, pints. they even have gluten free options. joe and i will definitely be going there after we move into our new apt to deflower our freezer with some delicious vegan ice cream.

lula's sweet apothecary has two new loyal followers.

lula's sweet apothecary
516 east 6th street
new york, ny 10009

btw, lula's opens at 3pm daily.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

the trip to conneticut pt. 2

the boys kept telling me how delicious the bakery was and i had no reason to doubt them, these were the same guys who brought me to the most amazing pizza joint i've ever had the pleasure of eating at. joe suggested i try a canoli, and boy am i glad he did. i've never been a huge fan of cannolis, i find them to be overly sweet and leave me feeling nauseous. i assure you this cannoli did not leave me feeling that way. the pastry itself was sweet and almost crumbly, the filling was creamy and melted in your mouth. if i hadn't met my calorie quota for the month i would have eaten like 3 more, but i felt guilty enough.

libby's cannoli was the perfect ending to a wonderful day filled with delicious food and good friends. i look forward to the day i return to new haven's little italy.

libby's italian pastry shop
139 wooster st
new haven, CT 06511
(203) 772-0380

the trip to conneticut

well, it's been a while. for the past 6 months i've been meaning to post on here but i always forgot. that ends today. today marks the true beginning of hammy on rye. i've been taking pictures here and there of really awesome meals, so i'll be backtracking today. so sit back and enjoy hammy on rye from here on out.

on april 25th joe, myself and our friends tim and rich drove to new haven, conneticut to meet chris at frank pepe pizzeria napoletana, or pepe's for short. i had seen pepe's featured on pizza nation (due to the rivalry with sally's, which is another popular pizza joint in new haven that pepe's nephew had opened), and other shows on the food network and travel channel. the story behind pepe's is like most old pizzeria joints: italian immigrates to US and makes delicious pizza in conneticut in 1925. their pizzas are baked in coal fired brick ovens, and the pies are thin crust. the menu is simple, not overzealous and the wait can be long.

luckily we didn't wait for long. chris had already arrived at pepe's, so he had secured a spot in line and by the time we arrived we were ushered to our table. so...the food. we went all out, ordering 4 pies for 5 people topped off with some of the most delicious root beer i've ever tasted in my entire life (foxon park to be exact).

a regular cheese pie, chicken and broccoli pie, veggie pie and a white pie, which i don't believe was on the menu. basically it was like garlic bread with lots of gooey, mouth watering cheese. i didn't try the veggie pie, because well, it was the furthest away from me. the cheese pizza was everything i had hoped for, the perfect amount of sauce to cheese ratio, and the crust was thin and crispy. the sauce was just the right balance of sweet and savory. as embarrassing as this is, we ALMOST finished all 4 pies, we each had about 4 slices to bring home. needless to say, we went ALL out.

the prices were fair as well. we each spent around 18 bucks, including tip...which is cheap for 4 pies and 2 bottles of soda. i left pepe's feeling like i was going to vomit, and yet completely satisfied. it deserves every bit of hype and praise it receives because it exceeded my expectations.

even though we had consumed as many calories as most of us would probably reach in a week, we decided we wanted to be total fat asses and go down to the bakery a block away.

frank pepe pizzeria napoletana
157 wooster st
new haven, CT 06511
(203) 865-5762