The bar exam is in a little over a week. I need to focus all my energy into last minute studying. I’ll post again when I’ve made it through hell. In the mean time here’s a picture of a beach that someone built in the Financial District.
I’ve been working my way around Hudson Eats in Brookfield Place, a new dining space in Battery Park City that overlooks the Hudson River.
So many great NYC casual dining restaurants are located in Hudson Eats; Sprinkles, Num Pang, Dig Inn, Chopt, Umami Burger, and seven others fill the large dining hall.
On this visit I dined at Mighty Quinn’s Barbeque and I was very excited to try it because there is nary a bad word written about the place. The brisket above has all the hallmarks of great bbq; a thick smoke ring, a thick crust, and a good mix of fat that makes the meat juicy. But ya’ll there was one problem, the sauce. I am not used to a vinegar based bbq sauce, and I don’t like it. Maybe I got a bad batch, but all I tasted was the vinegar.
The sweet potato casserole though, that was the best. It’s made with maple and pecans and even the smallest portion offered is huge. Despite the sauce situation, Mighty Quinn’s is an excellent bbq joint. You should Google pics of the brontosaurus rib.
Check out the full Mighty Quinn’s menu here
I’ve pretty much cut myself off of regular television (except for watching a few World Cup games). In part because it’s the summer and there isn’t anything good on t.v., and in part because the fear of not passing the bar makes me study all day. It is a sad life friends, but at the end of the day I usually pick a movie from Netflix to watch before I go to sleep, and the “Cult Movies” section of Netflix has been my go to most nights. A good amount of movies from the 80′s and early 90′s still hold up. But I gotta say, it’s been seven years since I was in high school so maybe my memory is fuzzy, but I don’t remember there being such a divide between the “popular” kids, the nerds, and everyone else. Was this a thing that actually happened in the 80′s? My Goonies DVD is back in Georgia and you can’t stream it on Netflix,boo. Here are my Netflix cult movie faves:
Adventures in Babysitting
The Breakfast Club (duh)
Can’t Buy me Love
Boyz ‘N the Hood
The Karate Kid
Netflix also has a lot of great of documentaries. I should probably write a separate post for documentaries but here’s a small sampling of my favorites.
The Woman who wasn’t There- I don’t want to ruin the plot for you, but it’s about a 9/11 survivor–sort of. Just watch it.
Tabloid- This is about a southern belle who goes to England to rescue her Mormon boyfriend who is serving his mission. I cannot tell if the woman is crazy or just eccentric but it definitely makes for an interesting film.
Any 30 for 30-These are the ESPN sports documentaries. I don’t pretend to be heavily into sports, but ESPN lays these stories out beautifully. Some of my favorites are : The Announcement, The Price of Gold, The Two Escobars, and Marion Jones.
Crazy Love- A story about a scorned ex-boyfriend who hires men to blind his ex-girlfriend with acid– and all the crazy stuff that happens afterward.
A Place at the Table- This one is about food insecurity in America. It’s heartbreaking to see how many people in the U.S. are starving.
Hot Coffee - The real story about the woman who sued McDonald’s and how the media (and big corporations) skew our view of events. It’s also about how tort reform has screwed up the justice system.
Vegucated – 3 New Yorkers go vegan for 6 weeks. It’s interesting to see how their dietary changes influenced their families and how their lives changed after the 6 weeks was over.
Dos Toros is basically Chipotle with a little more care put into the making of the food. The owners are from California and wanted to bring the flavors of West Coast burrito joints to NYC. From other reviews I’ve read, you can really tell the difference when you try a Dos Toros burrito. But alas, I went with my usual steak bowl. The steak was seasoned much better than Chipotle’s steak which can occasionally be bland. Other than that the ingredients are very similar. There are a couple differences–red rice instead of white or brown, and a choice of three hot sauces vs. Chipotle’s two.
Both Dos Toros and Chipotle are priced about the same, so if you visit New York and are looking for something a twinge different, stop by Dos Toros.
Check out the full Dos Toros Menu here. There are locations all over the city.
In other news, there are 18 days until the bar. God help me.
Can’t stop, won’t stop loving the shack, but I am attempting to try variety of items on the menu. This time around I ordered one Shake Shack’s vegetarian options, the ‘shroom burger. I am always skeptical of the vegetarian option but I read an article somewhere (and now I can’t figure out where) that Danny Meyer said he wouldn’t put a veggie burger on the menu unless someone who isn’t a vegetarian would crave one. Well Mr. Meyer you have succeeded. The ‘shroom burger is my new favorite Shake Shack item. To make the ‘shroom burger, a portabello mushroom is breaded, stuffed with muenster and cheddar cheese, and is then deep fried.
Look at the cheese oozing from the mushroom. That is decadence. You would think the flavor of the mushroom would get drowned out by the cheese and the deep fried-ness but it was there, strong and flavorful. I did not miss having a meat patty.
I am a huge Harry Potter fan. I used to to lock myself in my room and read the books under the covers because my parents didn’t allow me to read books that dealt with witchcraft (I’m rolling my eyes so hard, this is a tale for another time, maybe). I’ve been to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter three times and each visit there’s a prop or an Easter Egg or a food item that I didn’t notice before. My favorite vacation memory is visiting the park for the first time with two hardcore fans. One of my friends cried. I did not show that much emotion but the experience was still thrilling.
Anyway Universal Studios added a new section to the park–Diagon Alley, which opens July 8th, and I spent a solid hour searching the internet for pictures and articles about the park. There’s a Gringott’s bank ride, you can drink and eat at The Leaky Cauldron, you can eat ice cream at Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlor, and best of all, you can ride the Hogwart’s Express. My childhood dreams are coming true people!
One of my best friends works at Disney so I foresee a trip to Orlando in the near future. Hopefully in the fall or winter when the craziness has died down.
Also Happy Fourth! It’s been raining all day here in New York so I’m staying in.
Dining at Dig Inn is like eating a really delicious home cooked meal, which is comforting because I haven’t had time to make anything but quick, lackluster meals since moving to New York. The menu at Dig Inn changes with every season, and everything is local to area ensuring you fresh ingredients at every visit. And the meal below only cost $10.
Pictures of meat do not photograph well, especially with an iPhone but I’m telling you the meal was excellent. First you pick a grain, which is either brown rice bulgur, then you choose a meat and sides. I ordered the braised beef with a side a string beans and potatoes and a cucumber avocado salad. It’s been a few days and I still can’t get that salad off of my mind.
Check out the full Dig Inn menu here. There are locations all over the city.
I use them both interchangeably, depending on what kind of service I need and how big of a rush I’m in. Citymapper is a more comprehensive app, offering bus, subway, railway, ferry routes, and Citi Bike locations. Whereas Embark only offers ferry routes and subway directions.
Another advantage that Citymapper has over Embark is that I can search for a store or restaurant, like Chipotle and it will bring up several different options in the area. But on Embark, if I do a search for “Chipotle” the app can not bring up any addresses. What I’ve found is that Embark can only recognize well known landmarks like the Empire State Building to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in its search bar. For all other locations, you have type in the exact address of the location you wish to visit, then Embark will show the subway route. It’s very inconvenient to have to look up an address on the go, especially if you are in a rush.
Both apps tell the rider exactly which subway station to enter, which train to get on (with arrival and departure times) and both tell the rider the name of the stop the rider should get off. I also like that both the apps tell you all the stops the bus or subway will make so you can follow the route. It’s how I reassure myself that I’m on the correct bus/subway. However on Citymapper, you can save your routes and the app will send you a notification when your stop is approaching.
I know it seems as though I prefer Citymapper, but when I’m not in a rush Embark is my app of choice. The picture seems more clear, and words seem bolder which is why I am often attracted to using Embark over Citymapper.
If you ever plan to visit the city, you should definitely download one or both of these before you arrive. Everyday I see tourists struggling with paper maps or asking random strangers for directions. Their directional problems could be solved in minutes. Both apps are free in the app store, and available on Android and iPhone.
*For the record, Embark and Citymapper have no idea who I am. I just think the products are neat.
There are no good places to eat on Staten Island. There isn’t even a Chipotle here, and for me Chipotle is a main food group so I’m sure you can see how I suffer during the week. As I have said before, I usually only go into the city once a week (I gotta keep my eye on the prize study wise) but the weekends are for food/neighborhood exploring and studying, meh. Last weekend’s restaurant of choice was Umami Burger.
In layman’s terms, umami is a pleasant, savory taste and all the burgers at Umami Burger are created to evoke that umami flavor. Meat seasoned with umami sauce, sea kelp powder, slow roasted tomatoes, parmesan cheese, that sort of thing.
I chose the “manly burger.” Dumb name, really good burger. It’s made with beer cheddar cheese, pork lardons (really thick pieces of pork), and smoked salt onion strings (a little too salty if you ask me). It was quite good with a strong smokey flavor. I wanted to try the secret menu item, cheesy tater tots, but they aren’t offered at the Brookfield Place location I visited. Umami Burger get with it!
Check out the full Umami Burger menu here. There are locations in the West Village and Battery Park City.
I pack extremely healthy lunches during the week so that I can splurge on calories when I go into the city on the weekends. Carrots, hummus, applesauce; it all has a purpose– for me to eat burgers and cupcakes on the weekend.
I seem to have a thing for key lime desserts this summer. This is the key lime cupcake from Sprinkles. It’s a seasonal flavor and oops they just stopped selling it yesterday so I hope you got to try one. The cupcake is more jazzed up than a normal cupcake with a graham cracker crust, lime curd filling, and a toasted marshmallow top. Yum.
Check out the full Sprinkles menu here. There are locations in all the major cities around the country.