The Girl Who Ate Everything

Blogging about food and whatever since 2004.

Financier, Crosby Connection, Pio Maya, and Yakitori Taisho: holy crap, did I eat all that?


Last Wednesday I split a 12-slice cake from Financier with Nick in exchange for a guitar pedal. As gluttonous as I am, you might be surprised to learn that I've never split a full-sized cake before. Seriously. With my chef's knife in hand, I sliced that sucker down the middle like a doctor performing open heart surgery...really badly..


Neither of us could remember the exact name or description of the cake, but these photos should help you if you want to buy it. The bottom half is a chewy, moist, just dense enough brownie, while the top layer is glorious light buttery cream. In between the layers are slivered almonds and other bits of nutty goodness. On top of the cream is a skin of something sweet, creamy, and vanilla flavored, and all around the cake are whole French almond macarons. Even though I haven't tried Financier's other whole cakes, I can't imagine how it could get better than this. You've got your brownie, your cream, your nuts, and your macarons. My god, that's the formula for instant death brought on by tastiness overload.

brownie n cream
brownies and cream, uh huh

I ate two slices on that first day. If you're wondering, that's one slice too many unless you have a conjoined twin. After that, I thought, "...No, no more." I offered my roommate a piece. While she said she just wanted a bite, looking at the slice remnant the next day showed me that she had taken more than a bite. Really, if you're gonna eat more than half the slice, just take the whole thing instead of leaving a sad little cake corpse behind.

I ate the leftover from that slice. Dammit. I gave another slice to Patricia and I have onnnne left (if you're compelled to do the math, I also gave a slice from my half to Nick)...Sarah, it's calling your name...

suzy special
suzy special

Yes, I am still on this weird sandwich kick (seriously, this is my new record for "single food eating whatnot". I went back to Crosby Connection for more cheap, delicious sandwich action and ended up with the Suzy Special: "fresh mozzarella, 2 slice of proscuitto, fresh tomatoes, sweet roasted peppers, buttery slices of avocado, fragrant basil, virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar". I'm not sure why I got this considering I'm not much of a prosciutto fan; indeed, it ended up being the only part of the sandwich I found disagreeable. I guess I don't mind proscuitto when it's hot, but cold and flaccid, not so much. However, the rest of the sandwich was awesome, especially the soft, chewy, and crusty bread. The more sandwiches I eat, the more I think about how sad a sandwich is without good bread.

060330 008 060330 007
brownie brownie brownie

Someone recommended Crosby Connection's brownie to me, so I obviously had to try it. Oh god, it's a good brownie. Moist and dense, but not too rich or overpoweringly chocolatey. It's a hefty portion, but I foolishly ate the whole thing in one meal. I only ate half the sandwich for lunch (and saved the other half for dinner), but my attempt to just eat half of the brownie failed horribly. The rest of the brownie know, jumped on my plate, gouged itself on my fork, etc. These things are beyond my control. I want to eat this brownie again, but it might be too dangerous.

mexican sandwich

Folks, we're still not out of sandwich country. (This is the last sandwich I'll talk about in this entry, but the next one will continue the sandwich action. Yeah, I'm scared too.)
Tristan joined me for lunch on Friday for my second visit to Pio Maya. More humans = more mouths to feed, hence more food I can sample! Yessss. Since the menu is kind of large, I just went for the torta (sandwich), composed of mayo, fried beans, lettuce, tomato, avocado, jalapenos, and chorizo (pork). Although I'm almost completely unfamiliar with Mexican food, I'd say this is like a sandwich with taco fillings (, Mexican fillings). ...Yes, that's probably a stupid description, but it ain't a burger, nor a tea sandwich, nor a hoagie, so let me be. It's a tad messy to eat, but the sandwich is neatly wrapped in wax paper to lessen the chance of getting crap all over your fingers...and you'll eat it quickly anyway. I especially liked the Jalapenos for kicking some sense into my nasal passages. Once again, the bun was good; soft, warm, and chewy. Why have I never eaten a torta before? I gotta keep my eyes open for more of these babies.

fried yucca
fried yucca

As much as I enjoyed the torta, the fried yucca was the real drool-inducing dish. I ordered this because unless you're at risk of heart attack, you can't go wrong with fried, starchy root vegetables. I've never had fried yucca before, so my description is going to suck. Here I go...

...uhh...nevermind. Tristan said, "It was kind of crunchy on the outside, and soft and fibrous on the inside", which sounds right to me. Sadly, I can't convey how much I enjoyed this dish by trying (and failing) to come up with sensory descriptions.

i eat food
I eat food

I chewed. I swallowed. I immediately knew I liked it. ISN'T THAT GOOD ENOUGH FOR YOU? OH GOD, WHAT ELSE DO YOU WANT FROM ME?!?!?

super taco rice and beans
super taco!, rice and beans

Tristan got this super double-crust taco and a side of rice and beans. I didn't try the taco, but he enjoyed it and noted that the lime was a good sign. I thought the beans were kind of bland (not sure what they're supposed to taste like), but I liked the rice. Then again, I like all rice. I mean, rice from any part of the world (I think some Chinese people only like short grain Chinese rice; nuh uh!) prepared in almost any way, as long as it's not sludgey congee, which just doesn't agree with me.

Can you take one more restaurant? Yeah? Okay. Last one in this entry, I sweeeaaar...

seats be filled

After attending THE MOST AWESOME CONCERT EVER, I went to Yakitori Taisho with Patricia and two of her friends from out of town. Never having been to St. Mark's Place late at night, I had no idea how crowded it was. Who are all these people eating at 11 PM? Wuuuh?

interesting menu

Patricia's friends wanted to do some drinking, which is one reason that people go to Yakitori Taisho, but it's not easy for minors to get alcohol on a Friday night. Ah well. Except for one of her friend's sisters who was old enough to drink, we just stuck with the food from their menu where everything was tasty and cheap. This isn't your typical Japanese restaurant serving sushi and fish. As you could probably tell from the name, they specialize in yakitori, or "massive amounts of things grilled on sticks".

okonomiyaki! okonomiyaki!

I wasn't in a "massive amounts of things grilled on sticks" mood, so I went for okonomiyaki, one of my favorite dishes that I rarely eat (really, this was my third time) because it's not offered in many places. But here it was! There was no question that I had to get it. As for what the hell okonomiyaki is, I'd say that it's like a thick, mealy, savoury pancake with crapload of stuff in it. I don't think any encyclopedia would jump at the chance to use my description, but that's kinda what it is. This okonomiyaki was my favorite of the three I've eaten so far (the others being from Otafuku and Mitsuwa); it contained all kinds of seafood bits that I'm not particularly fond of, but found tasty anyway (shrimp, squid, other things I don't remember), slathered in lots of Okonomiyaki sauce and topped with a pile of bonito flakes. There's also the excessive mayo, which I wouldn't normall eat, but ye was late, I was covered in confetti, my ears were ringing with the buzzing of a gazillion cicadas, and I hadn't eaten anything since Pio Maya.

Oh, another plus for the okonomiyaki besides that its a delicious bundle of seafoody savoury-ness: the gigantic slab cost around $8. If I remember correctly. And I might not since we were there for a long time eating all this other food. I didn't try any of it so I'll just food-porn you:

onigiri grilled onigiri grilled stuff fish? ramen salmon
steamed onigiri, grilled onigiri, plate of stuff on sticks, fish thing, ramen, salmon

YOU HAVE OFFICIALL REACHED THE END OF THE ENTRY! Unfortunately, you don't get any kind of prize. You're probably hungrier now, actually. Sorry. [pat pat]


Cathy / April 3, 2006 1:24 PM

Robyn, there is nothing foolish about leaving room for dessert. That is a very wise move. It's the best part of the meal!

I really need to try some Japanese food. I'm sure there's something affordable around here... somewhere. You're dish looked especially tasty. :)

Albany Jane / April 3, 2006 2:22 PM

Oh wow. The brownie cake looks awesome. Ive been fiending for cake lately, and this... makes me want some even more. Now Im getting cake!

The food from Yakitori Taisho looks rather drool inducing but wow - thats a lot of mayo. Was is just mayo, or a spicier version of it? If it were spice-ified, it wouldnt be too bad. That picture of the salmon though, is going to make me slobber over the keyboard for a while.

elas / April 3, 2006 3:27 PM

This entry reminded me of one of my worst food experiences ever. Don't be offended by that, it's just the mention of the squid pancake. See, for most of us white peeps, the those two words don't go together. In fact, we can't even fathom the idea of those two words together. See, in whitelandia, we think of pancakes as always being sweet. The cloest thing we get to a savory pancake is a crepe with chicken and we only find those in big cities.

So back to my story, I was in Tokyo visiting a friend a couple years ago and was off alone in Ueno park during cherry blossom season so there were all kinds of food stands around. Being somewhat adventurous, I got in the the biggest line where it looked like the vendor was cooking up fresh, sweet little pancake things with creamy icing on top. YUM!

I waited for about 15 minutes and finally got mine. I thought it was weird to put some green onion bits on top, but hey, whatever. I took my little pancake thing and sat down on a bench to enjoy my little treat. I took one bite and all I could taste was mayo and squid and it was all squishy (funny how those two words go together).

I like squid. I like mayo. I like pancakes. But these things together in a squishy mess when you're expecting dessert is not a good time. I couldn't eat anything after my first bite. I felt bad for wasting it, but OMG i thought I was going to lost it right there. I had to get far, far away.

roboppy / April 3, 2006 5:22 PM

Cathy: Dessert should be the ONLY part of the meal!...if it weren't so unhealthy.

Japanese food is my favorite! Although within Japanese food, I just have a few...favorites. Er. Curry + anything, katsu anything, eel anything, okonomiyaki, and soba are my preferences. :D

ed: No, but I should. :( I walk, but not nearly enough to burn all this stuff. I acknowledge that I should be fatter than I am right now. ;P My metabolism isn't awesome, but good enough I guess!

Albany Jane: Get a brownie and SMOTHER IT IN CREAM, hooya! Today I gave into cheap Chinatown baked goods and bought a custard cream bun and a sesame rice ball, ararhhgra!

I think it's just plain mayo...well, Japanese mayo, which is slightly different than Hellmann's? ;) Anything that would normally be unhealthy ends up being acceptable if it's Japanese. "DEEP FRIED PORK = OKAY!" Har har harrr.

Elas: Thanks for sharing your story, although I'm sorry for conjuring up such HORRIFYING IMAGES of undelightful squid + mayo + pancake combinations. I totally understand being disappointed (or horrified) if I eat something that isn't what I expected, even if it doesn't taste bad overall. That must've been quite a shock for you....yeah, "creamy icing" made of eggs, oil, and other goo. [rubs belly]

Marvo: You know what's next...


(Why am I also compelled to say "CAKES ON A PLANE"?)

Jenn / April 3, 2006 5:29 PM

Otafuku is good for one thing and one thing only, and that thing is takoyaki. taaakoyakiiiii. iiiii. fresh off the grill. sooo good. a million times better than the "takoyaki" sold at Panya across the streeet. or is it down the block? you know where it is, I'm sure. :)

I am envious of your proximity to the East Village and chinatown because of all the yummies to be found there! envious! but that's okay. I think.

violet / April 3, 2006 6:44 PM

dude, if i posted everything i ate in a day it would look like this, too. which is why i love this blog.

food porn for the masses, robyn.

roboppy / April 4, 2006 1:37 AM

Jenn: Ooo yes, I've had Otafuku's takoyaki (mmm!) and...I've tried Panya's too! Definitely not as good, but I guess it can't be after sitting in a bakery case for a while. :\ Yes, those squidy spheres need to be freshly grilled!

There are too many yummies. I went to Chinatown today and bought a 50-piece bag of veggie dumplings, a 4-pack of vegetable buns, two pastries for $1, and four oranges for $1. So altogether, I spent less than $20. Weeeee. I ate too many dumplings.

I want more fried yucca too. Ahh.

Violet: I aim to please. ...Which reminds me, I have photos of dumplings innards I need to get off my camera.

Adriane: When we go to Yakitori Taisho, my friend's friends were disappointed by the clear signs that said "WE DO NOT SERVE TO MINORS, BLAH BLAH BLAH"...hehe. Maybe they got into trouble? I heard it's alright on weekdays though.

...Not that I care, since I just want a milkshake.

Mila / April 4, 2006 4:59 AM

Great food post, and you're so on my list of people to eat with when I'm in NY. I heart sandwiches and okonomiyaki too (I even made it once, harder than it looks).

Anna / April 4, 2006 10:18 AM

Aaah, Mitsuwa, oooh, okonomiyaki. It's officially your fault that I'm not losing any weight right now ;)

roboppy / April 4, 2006 3:31 PM

Mila: Glad you enjoyed my intense fooding! In one of my classes where we were cooking our own recipes, a Japanese girl tried to make okonomiyaki. It was pretty messy. I didn't get to taste it but it was probably gooood.

Anna: I share the pain. ...The pain of THE PANTS THAT WILL NOT FIT.

janet / April 5, 2006 9:01 AM

hahahahaha i just misread this sentence: "I especially liked the Jalapenos for kicking some sense into my nasal passages" putting in "Japanese" for "Jalapenos". ohhhhh. i know, it doesn't even make sense cuz you're talking about mexican food... what-evs!!

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