Freemans is a cool restaurant tucked away on Freeman Alley in the LES. I guess that’s not a real street. Hence, their address is on Chrystie St, but it’s not on Chrystie. Seems like a place where you’d take a date to. I wonder how much of a weirdo I look like when I show up by myself to these type of places.
I got the Freemans’ Cassoulet (pork belly, pork sausage, pork loin white gigante beans & buttery croutons $29). Good food. Although I guess the flash photo makes it look kind of weird. Looks like the the meat is on a pile of vomit in a doggy bowl. You’d never know though since the restaurant is so dimly lit. I guess that’s good for dating. I usually look better in the dark.
Freemans – the end of Freeman Alley (@ Rivington, between Chrystie and Bowery) New York, NY 10002
Last week, I was at Eastwood to drink for Sarah’s bday. They had a pickup/ordering window in the bar. I got the fried fish, which I thought was good.
Then when I was leaving, Sarah’s was urging me to get the Israeli Scotch Egg. A hard boiled wrapped in a falafel with tahini sauce on the side. I took it home. It was interesting. I’m sure it would have been good if I ate it when it was hot. I’m learning all the time.
Eastwood – 221 E Broadway (btwn Clinton & Montgomery) New York, NY 10002
We went to Cibao where I got that Cuban sandwich years ago. I feel like prices went up. Sandwiches are probably the best deal at around $6-8.
The Shrimp Cantonese was interesting. I wouldn’t thought they would have something like that on the menu. But it was surprisingly pretty good.
I got into a fight with Justin about whether to use flash or not on my camera. I used to be a proponent of non-flash food photos, but now I do a lot of flashing. I like the way it makes the photo look like an American Apparel ad. Also I don’t need to think and change settings and worry about the people waiting to eat the food. Plus it’s a lot sharper.
I took both flash and no flash. Okay in this case after I photoshopped them, no-flash turned out okay I guess. Sometimes you never know though. It wasn’t bright inside the restaurant and the original untouched images do look shitty.
I mean look how awesome these photos of Grilled Cheese I took at Subject bar earlier in the night…
I definitely couldn’t have gotten this shot without a flash. It would have been all blurry.
Cibao – 72 Clinton St (@ Rivington St) New York 10002
We went to Fatta Cuckoo in the Lower East Side for their Sunday Supper Series. Christy’s friend was guest chef for the night –Daniel Gorman, who plays in the band !!! (pronounced chk, chk, chk). I think I saw them years ago at Coney Island while I was on the Cyclone.
The meal was 5 courses with cocktail and wine pairing for $60. Fried Cauliflower with Parmesan Cheese Batter, Chilled Asparagus Soup, Seared Tuna Belly with Lemon Vinaigrette on a Bed of Watercress and Radish, Lamb Kofta with Mint and toasted Almond Couscous with a Garlic-Infused Yogurt Sauce, Strawberry-Rhubarb Coulis with Shortbread Cookie Crumble and Whipped Cream.
Really good. The Fried Cauliflower was cool. I first thought they were Zeppoles (fried dough), but then I bit into it and I thought it was potato. But then I looked at the menu and it was cauliflower. That’s a good trick to trick a kid to eat vegetables.
I also like the Lamb Kofta on skewered with pair of disposable chopsticks. That’s a good idea. Even though I’m Chinese, I’m actually I’m really bad with chopsticks. But this is a good idea to just pierce shit.
The dessert was good too. I thought it was a like a tart, but the menu says it’s a Strawberry-Rhubarb Coulis with Shortbread Cookie Crumble and Whipped Cream. Is that the same thing?
I wasn’t paying attention, but apparently Lena Dunham of Girls walked in, but the place was full. So she left. That’s a pretty cool non-sighting. That reminds me this other non-sighting where I was dancing at a party and my friends told me that John Mayer just walked behind me and looked at me weird.
So they are going to more of these Sunday Suppers. Even one with owner’s mom cooking Italian food. That sounds awesome. I love mom-cooked foods.
Fatta Cuckoo – 63 Clinton St (btwn Stanton & Rivington) Manhattan, NY 10002
I was meeting with Sam and Todd at Mission Chinese Food in the Lower East Side. Sam was shooting the owner for an Australian magazine outside the restaurant. I took a photo of a guy taking a photo of Sam taking a photo of the owner. So I started a blog called “Hipsters Taking Photos of Hipsters Taking Photos of Hipsters Taking Photos of Hipsters.”
The restaurant looks kind of like a small Chinese take-out place in the front, but in the back it’s a cool small indoor artsy garden. The menu is like a hipster take on Chinese food –i.e. Kung Pao Pastrami, Char Sui Pig Ear Terrine, Catfish a la Sichuan. Sounds interesting.
Started off with some drinks. The beers come in plastic tumblers. I was surprised when I picked it up. It was so light. I was thinking yes, this is how beer should come, so I don’t feel like I’m going to drop it all the time. But it does taste different. It’s not as cold. We also had some kind of boozy Horchata drink.
Dang, the food was awesome. I didn’t really expect to like it this much. Bold flavors.
The Chongquing Chicken Wings I think were made with Sichuan Peppercorns. They were strong and completely numbed my tongue. It also had small bits of Fried Beef Tripe. Todd didn’t know what those were. I wonder if he would have eaten it if he did.
Kung Pao Pastrami was good. What you think –Pastrami cooked Kung Pao style with peanuts and all.
Thrice Cooked Bacon amazing with the Shanghainese Rice Cakes. I feel like the rice cakes were the star with the chili oil. Bacons doesn’t hurt though.
Broccoli Beef Brisket with Smoked Oyster Sauce was the least flavorful. It was good and tender, but it wasn’t so crazy in my mouth. I guess it was a good palate cleanser.
That was a really good meal.
Mission Chinese Food – 154 Orchard St (btwn Stanton & Rivington) New York, NY 10002
Last week, I went and saw one of my favorite bands growing up, Soul Asylum. I really didn’t know if I wanted to see them. I think it’s weird seeing your childhood favs as old people. But I went anyway. It was cool. Being drunk helped. And it’s weird. Most of the band members are different now. I don’t know if that made it better or worse, so I didn’t have to see so many old people on stage. They played my favorite song, Closer to the Stars. I got my money’s worth.
Then I went next door to Congee Bowery afterwards. I was so drunk and slurring so bad to the host. I’m surprised they sat me. I think it was almost time to close.
I think I tried to order the Turtle Soup, but they were out. Then I asked for Congee and the waiter said no. So ordered pan fried dumplings.
After the waiter left, I turned around and the guy I was rubbing shoulders with in a pretty empty restaurant was eating some awesome looking stuff. I asked the host what he was eating. I want that. It was Crab Porridge. Wait. That’s Congee! He let me order it. So I don’t know why the waiter was lying to me.
It was delicious and everything costs about the same as one beer at Bowery Ballroom. Free tea too!
Congee Bowery – 207 Bowery (btwn Rivington & Spring St) New York, NY 10002
After band practice with the Party Animals tonight, we had a bite with Pok Pok Wing in the Lower East Side in the old Baohaus spot. I always thought the wings looked awesome in photos that I’ve seen online. So it was a good chance to finally try them.
I got the full order of Ike’s Thai Wings (6 for $12.49) spicy. It came with a small Vietnamese salad, which had some of those pickled carrots and daikon that goes on a Banh Mi Sandwich. The wings were pretty good. Maybe not mind-blowing as it looked in the photos, but pretty good. I think the thing that left me with a bad taste in my mouth was that it sounded pretty expensive for 6 wings. But for some reason, I was stuffed even after sharing a wing with the band. Now that I think about it, they were full connected wings. So if they just chopped them in half, they could have called it 12 wings. Then it’s not that bad of a deal.
The rest of the guys got the Khao Man Som Tam (green papaya salad served with coconut rice and sweet shredded pork cooked in palm sugar and black soy, topped with fried shallots and cilantro.) Pretty good. And Dave also got a Som Drinking Vinegar drink. Tasted like apple cider vinegar.
After hearing a lot about Pok Pok coming to New York, I was surprised how empty the place was. Maybe it’s because of the big C letter grade in the window. Isn’t that like getting an F? I saw some girls walking by thinking about going in, but saw the C. I wonder how dirty you have to be to get a C. I’ve seen some real shady Chinese take-outs with an A.
Pok Pok Wing – 137 Rivington St (btwn Norfolk & Suffolk St) New York 10002
This’ll be my first time in a long time on guitar in a band. It’s fun playing it. Party Animals is playing boogie woogie songs for a benefit this Friday night (8/13) at Grand Victory in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
I was out an about the other night after the 2nd Pulp show. I made my friends get into a cab and took them to a bar in LES/Chinatown. Right when we were going in, I sorta ditched them because I realized I hadn’t eaten. I said I’ll be back. I walked around for a while and the only place I could find open was that Chinese restaurant, Fen Yang Corporation, that had that menu of interesting exotic delights.
They didn’t take credit cards and no one knew where an ATM was. The waitress made me order the cheapest thing on the menu –Chow Mein Fuzhou Style Noodles ($3.75). I actually had more money …maybe not enough for Goose Intestine w/ Tender Leek. I do wish I had enough for the Live Shrimp. That sounds exciting.
The Chow Mein Noodles were just alright. Greasy like it should be …with pieces of pork in there. A good size portion for being the cheapest dish on the menu. I wanted to ask for hot sauce, but I felt like I was already on their bad side for coming in with only a few dollars and because I’m ABC (American-Born-Chinese). Sometimes I get the feeling that Off-the-Boat Chinese like white people more than me.
When I got back to the bar, there turned out to be a cover to get in. It was sweaty, loud and crowded and I think my friends just wanted to sit and talk. They had already left. I felt like a dick.
Fen Yang Corporation – 107 Eldridge Street (btwn Broome & Grand) New York 10002
This photo from my camera ain’t that bad. I shouldn’t be hesitant to use it, like the other day at Spritzenhaus beer garden, where my friend Jill had birthday drinks. I have a bad habit of not being able to eat anything new if I don’t have my camera to blog it. I need to stop worrying about that and also stop worrying about my camera making a big bulge in my pocket.