[Thanks to everyone for pre-ordering t-shirts! I guess all I had to do to get that rolling was...tell people it existed. I extended the pre-order until early May because otherwise I'll be stuck with a crapload of shirts at finals time. Which isn't cool. In this case, I'll be mailing the shirts from home in NJ and not NYC, although I'd still come to NYC for fooding and...um, actual things to do, which don't really exist in suburbia.]
After reading Sarah's review of Doma, I decided I had to go for sandwich bliss in a cozy coffeehouse-ish environment. Apparently, I'm still on that sandwich kick that's been going on for...[looks at watch]...longer than anyone could've predicted. I've almost forgotten what a fork looks like by now. All I know is the sensation of holding a crusty loaf of carby bread filled with delightful fat and protein based things and attempting to shove the whole thing in my mouth so I can taste the carb-protein-fat combination in one gluttonous chomp.
Nathan accompanied me on last night's feast of sandwiches and things that are bad for diabetics. He ate as much as I did, which means he probably ate too much. Of course, I also ate too much, but I think I'm more used to that, "Mmm, my belly feels preggers!" sensation than he is. Hm. So what did we eat? Ehehe...
Doma's sandwiches are made with Balthazar bread and come with a side mesclun salad. I ordered an avocado and mozzerella panino (besides being on a sandwich kick, I'm also addicted to those damn 'cados) while Nathan ordered the vegetable and goat cheese panino (which includes roasted peppers, grilled eggplant, zucchini, basil pesto, and aioli). The sandwiches are large enough without being overwhelming, a good deal for the $8-ish price tag. In accordance to the new Robyn rule of eating out, we shared the sandwiches. Sharing with another person means you can eat half of twice as much. Or something. Did that make any sense? I don't know...I stopped doing math after 12th grade.
This bread. Is. INSANE. And by that, I mean insanely good. The first comparable food that came to mind was creme brulee. No, this didn't have the flavor of creme brulee (that would've been odd), but the crust reminded me of the thin crispy caramelized topping on creme brulee that cracks when you jab it with a spoon. The outer crust of this bread was like creme brulee topping: thin, crispy, and cracks when jabbed...with teeth. Shards of crust gave way to soft, wheaty innards. Wheaty innards. ...Wheeeaaaty innaaaarrrds...yes, I'm excessively dragging it out for no good reason.
[Sidenote: I created a flickr innards group for the good of the nation and the food porn loving world. Could you believe that no one else made an innards group? Could you?!...oh, you could.]
PARTIALLY-EATING SANDWICH, IN YO FACE! Avocado? Full of fresh, fatty goodness. Mozzerella (from Joe's Dairy)? Full of a different kind of fresh, fatty goodness (of bovine origins). Zucchini? Tastes like zucchini. Together? An awesome sandwich. I'd eat it again. The vegetable and goat cheese panino was also very good. I know that's a poor description, but here's all you need to know: bread is awesome, fillings are adequate without spilling out of the bread and exploding all over your hands, and everything's reasonably priced. Also, you don't have to give a tip since you order and pay at the counter before getting your food. Woo! I'm sure you could give a tip if you wanted to though.
We cleaned up good. The end.
...HAHA, not. Sandwiches do not complete the meal; GASTRO-INTESTINAL PAIN DOES! Oops, I mean, DESSERTS, DESSERTS COMPLETE THE MEAL!
"I feel like having ice cream."
Two of the desserts come with ice cream, so we naturally got both. I couldn't remember the exact last time I had the combination of brownie and ice cream, meaning that it had been too long. What does a warm, dense, gooey, nut-filled brownie topped with creamy vanilla ice cream drizzled with caramel sauce taste like? Do you have to ask? Vanilla ice cream slowly melting over a warmed brownie tastes like sin. Conveniently, sin is delicious. Less conveniently, sin is bad for your health. And your chances of getting into heaven. BUT WHO CARES! IT'S ICE CREAM AND BROWNIE! The pairing is inevitably delicious, kind of like how NYU's tuition hike is inevitably going to piss off a gajillion cash-stapped students! Sweet.
Oh, grilled bananas....are freakin' awesome. Scooping the cinnamon dusted, pudding-soft banana flesh out of the skin reminded me of eating whole grilled Japanese eggplant. Except this is awesomer, because it's full of sugar. The bananas by themselves could've been a dessert...but I could say the same for the brownie. Screw that--pile on the ice cream! Not like I'm lactose intolerant.
Yup, we ate it all. Frighteningly, I didn't feel overly full after eating what may have been around 5000000 calories. I certainly wasn't hungry, but I didn't have that, "Oh, I think my stomach just turned into a bag of bricks, and I can't move, and I think my lungs are collapsing from the weight of my stomach" feeling either. How does my digestive system work? [shrugs]
Since I'm not a fan of liquids, I got the manhole-sized oatmeal cookie. Nathan got a small bucket of green tea accompanied by a cup of cow juice. I think I managed to eat half of the oatmeal cookie before wanting to pass out. The cookie was very good--kind of light, crispy on the outside, chewy inside, chock full of raisins and oatmeal-ness--but it was too damn huge for an after dinner and dessert snack (because you're not supposed to eat a snack after dinner and dessert). You saw all that other food I ate, right? Right. I have limits, believe it or not.
The end. The real end!
Actually, I lied. Time for Part 2! Or Part 0.5, since this comes before the stuff you just read.
Sarah and I went to Grey Dog Coffee on Sunday for the first time. Steve recommended the place very enthusiastically to me just a few days before that (I WELCOME ALL RECOMMENDATIONS, GIMME), so I naturally had to go. There was a huge line out the door. I knew Sarah was in there somewhere...
"SARAH, WHERE ARE YOU, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, WHEEERE?!" [cue hyperventillation]
I panic easily. She was waiting in line inside (like Doma, you order and pay at the counter before getting your food). I smooshed into the crowd and looked at the menu.
There was no question that I had to get French toast. It didn't matter whether or not I was in the mood for French toast. ...No no, one is always in the mood for French toast. Anytime is a good time for French toast. If you're happy, it'll make you happier. If you're sad, it'll make you happier. If you're sick, it'll probably make you sicker...but at least it's tasty.
But before the real food (because French toast is "real" food...at least, it has become culturally acceptable to eat bread fried in egg and covered in syrup as a meal), I saw the cookies. Gigantic cookies. What would you do if you saw these cookies?
Yup. I bought a chocolate peanut butter cookie the size of a hubcap. Moist inside, crispy outside, just enough peanut butter chips to not be overly peanut buttery, just dense enough so that I could eat it comfortably without stomach damage, just chocolatey enough so that I didn't go into a chocolate coma. It was really good. I liked it more than the oatmeal cookie.
Ah ha, time for French toast! My plate came with three slices of golden yellow Challah toast topped with sliced bananas, strawberries, blackberries, and powdered sugar. I also made use of the maple syrup in the back of the room (where you can also get other condiments and free water). This French toast was better than most French toast I've had in NYC...which might not be saying much since I haven't had French toast in NYC very often. But it's good stuff. It wasn't dry, unlike some others I've had, and the fruit could allow me to believe that I was eating something healthy when I knew I wasn't. Sweet!
Oh yeah, we also got a sandwich. We shared the French toast too; don't think I ate it all by myself! Upon one of the waiter's recommendations, we went with the "Smoked Turkey, Sundried Tomato, Brie, and Raspberry Mustard" sandwich on 9-grain bread. Not that the rest was bad, but the raspberry mustard and brie were my favorite parts; I wouldn't mind just eating a sandwich with those ingredients. Mmmmm. The mustard was the first thing I tasted, as it was very strong and nasal passage-clearing, which would've been helpful if my nasal passages needed clearing. Since they didn't, the mustard just made them go "woosh"...you know. Woosh. (Pretend you know what I'm talking about.) The bread's crust was oddly quite tough, but the insides were soft and among the better sandwich breads I've eaten. Overall, I thought it was a good sandwich, although not something I'd be dying to get again.
Oh my god, is this entry over? YES! FINALLY! Now you should go fulfill your cookie/French toast/sandwich cravings.