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Diancecht last won the day on February 13

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  1. sunday: meatballs in tomato sauce; endive braised with garlic and mint; radicchio and little gem lettuce salad; ricotta cheese and honey for dessert
  2. saturday: baked black cod, sweet-and-sour braised carrots. the vegetable side was from cooking alla giudia, page 222.
  3. hubby and i have now caught up to season 5 of fargo. once we’re done, we’ll likely watch season 2 of feud. i understand that la côte basque is back in the news. When Elaine Stritch sang of the “ladies who lunch” in Stephen Sondheim’s Company, she probably meant the patrons of La Côte Basque—the ultimate spot to see and be seen in 1960s New York. (It was likely John Fairchild and his staff at Women’s Wear Daily who coined the phrase; they did, after all, send photographers to wait outside its doors at 5 East 55th Street, hoping to catch regulars like Jackie Kennedy Onassis, Frank Sinatra, or the Duchess of Windsor streaming in and out.) On walking inside, guests encountered a grand room with seascape murals, fine tablecloths, red leather banquettes, and a very powerful maître d’. “At La Côte Basque, where egos are boosted or wounded depending on what table you’ve been given, you can still start out feasting on Jambon de Bayonne or Foie Gras des Landes ($8 extra) and sail into Jarret de Veau Braisé à l’Estragon,” Vogue reported in 1971. (Indeed, fluent menu French was a prerequisite: Patrons dined on genouillés provençale, délices de sole des gourmets, and contre filet rôti, no English translation provided.) see and be seen
  4. it’s a form of job security. also, he will be seen as a nobody the minute he leaves, loosely paraphrasing ruth reichl in one of her memoirs. so there’s that.
  5. Diancecht

    Frog Club

    nyt says that it was originally supposed to be froggy’s so on that note, it’s already an improvement 🧐
  6. Diancecht

    Frog Club

    lol. guess who worked on the case that led to chumley’s reopening. that was a shot in the arm.
  7. short rib borscht (from “kachka”, pages 221-223); radicchio and endive salad with oranges russian food is one thing i want to explore in 2024 and this cookbook is a good place to start.
  8. W Who would dare try to kill the Grill? Jean-Georges Vongerichten, the proprietor of Four Twenty Five, the restaurant in the new 425 Park Avenue office tower at East 56th, would never be so tactless as to say so, but I suspect that’s the ambition. The two restaurants are within spitting distance of each other. Each has its braggable architects (Mies van der Rohe and Philip Johnson for the Grill, né The Four Seasons; Lord Norman Foster for Four Twenty Five) and majordomos (the Major Food Group for the former; Vongerichten for the latter), and both were bankrolled by a beneficent real-estate suzerain (Aby Rosen; David Levinson and Robert Lapidus). Even the designs have an eerie echo: Fluttering, diaphanous curtains soften the headlights from the avenue, much as Marie Nichols’s famous woven-aluminum curtains do on 52nd, and, scaling Four Twenty Five’s lushly carpeted staircase to its hovering dining room, I was reminded of the similar ascent in the Seagram Building. 425 Park Avenue was completed in 2022. My colleague Justin Davidson describes Foster’s buildings, including this one, as “coolly sexy and seductively menacing.” The menace at the restaurant has been dialed down to plush softness and dim ease. The lobby bar may fill nightly with local financerati (much of the building is leased to Citadel, Ken Griffin’s hedge fund), but they sip their signature martinis under the cheerfully hectic brushstrokes of an enormous Larry Poons selected by Levinson. Among Abstract Expressionist trophies, this is about as un-menacing as it gets: Poons is to Pollock as Barney is to Jurassic Park. The real action happens upstairs. As at the Grill, the room, suspended like a ritzy spaceship over the ground floor, suggests urbanity and influence, not to mention the obedience of whole fleets of coordinately burgundy-suited staffers. “This is what I imagined New York was like when I was 7,” whispered my partner when we were seated. “This is a theme park that’s ‘New York.’ ” The vibe gives mid-century, but the menu does not. There are no prime-rib carts here; if the food recalls anyone’s past, it is Vongerichten’s, whose first New York restaurant, Lafayette, opened across the street in 1986. That history is in the coconut-lime curry that’s poured over a perfectly pink, steak-y slice of duck breast, for example, and the bar-menu snacks that reference his own greatest hits, like tuna tartare with ginger dressing. The man himself is not in the kitchen, though on a recent evening, he was holding court in the bar. Chef duties are handled by Jonathan Benno, the talented, longtime journeyman who ran Per Se’s kitchen before striking out on his own with Lincoln, on the Lincoln Center campus, and Benno, in the Evelyn Hotel. He brings his own style and perspective to the menu (and, if I were to guess, the entire pasta section). The combination can make for a disorienting mix. Steamed black bass and sesame on the one hand, a hearty veal chop with sauerkraut and spaetzle in a sweetbreads ragout on the other. Silken tofu (with the now requisite, inescapable gouging of caviar) to start, followed by lumache in a beautifully fennel-scented red sauce. It can be incongruous, but does that matter? more here
  9. @StephanieL this might interest you i visited that cafè today (address in the breakfast thread) and bought a jar of poulet basquaise, some boiled potatoes, a jar of tarte tatin and some perrier. all told, this came out to slightly over $30, not including tip. the chicken was bone-in and pretty good, if a tad oversalted. the tarte tatin was apples and crumbs; perhaps a better choice for dessert might have been the chocolate mousse. i’m still not sold on the whole concept but at least there is one more lunch option that isn’t a variation of burritos, pokè or chipotle.
  10. Diancecht


    i liked him better when he was doing cheap eats in the village voice. can we have that version of sietsema back? pretty please, with a cherry on top?
  11. it’s cafè mademoiselle the proprietor is a caterer located in the east bay and the cafè is their first physical location in sf 407 howard (1st)
  12. a new restaurant opened next to my office and here is part of their menu. the pastries and baguettes are quite good, actually. so i am hoping that the other offerings are just as delicious. the gimmick is “glass jars that contain food”; you buy the jar and use it to reheat its contents. a friend who lives in france/italy says this style of serving was trendy about 15-20 years ago but never as takeout…and i am not feeling it but hopefully it works because the part of sf where my office is located is a food desert.
  13. congratz on the blurb in this week’s new york magazine
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