Monday, November 24, 2003

The Restaurant I Ate at Last Night XXVII

While in New York City over the weekend to hunt for housing, I ate at a couple of interesting restaurants. Friday night, after stowing my possessions at a colleague's sublet on the upper west side, I hit City Diner, a 24-hour eatery, around 10 p.m. Nothing fancy, it's your basic all-day diner. I ordered the corned beef reuben with fries and a Corona. The sandwich was served open face, which always irritates me. "It's not a sandwich!" But the food was good and the people watching fun. Besides they have a $2 fried egg sandwich, so if the early-morning or late-night munchies hit you -- and you live in the area -- it's a quick stop for sustenance. $2 fried egg sandwich. Yum.

Saturday night, my friend Steve, who writes for the New York Post, and I headed to Gabriela's at 93rd and Amsterdam. Neither of us had eaten much all day -- me, only coffee -- so we were looking forward to some solid Mexican food. And we weren't disappointed. I ordered the chicken burrito, which was well prepared and not overly large. The entrees come with your choice of sides, but if you select beans and rice, it doesn't really feel like a side dish at all. Regardless, good food, pleasant atmosphere, and attentive staff. Worth checking out.

And last night, before catching my flight back to Boston, Steve and I walked to a high-end grocery nearby. Called something like Zapato's or Zapata's -- my googling isn't finding anything applicable -- it's reportedly always crowded and has a load of gourmet food and fine produce. We picked up some cheese, bread, prosciuto, garlicked olives, and cheese-filled gnocchi. Back at the ranch, we prepared some plates, mixed martinis, and settled in for a quiet urban picnic. Then it was back on the street, in a cab, and on the plane home.

Update: But how were the pickles? Glad you asked. I didn't have a pickle at Gabriela's, but the pickle at the City Diner was no great shake. The Search for the Perfect Pickle continues.

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