The Girl Who Ate Everything

Blogging about food and whatever since 2004.

Chip Shop, more chocolate, 5 yummy foods

I'm not finished packing and I haven't figured out how I'm going to drag two pieces of luggage, a laptop backpack (with laptop in tow) and a large shoulderbag that doubles as my camera bag without falling over multiple times. So I suppose I will fall over multiple times. Sweet!

If you have the urge to send me an email, please refrain from doing so until my next post (in Paris, hopefully). That way you'll know I'm alive and semi-settled down with enough brain power to answer emails. It should only be a few days...unless I died.

Okay, on to food-speak. Soon.

Tuesday was a dreary, rainy, gray, overall crappy day. I drove to Garden State Plaza with my windshield wipers on the highest setting so that I could catch split second glimpses of the road amidst the less helpful glimpses that made me feel like I was being followed by a waterfall. Alas, the rain does not keep New Jerseyans out of the mall; I could only find a parking spot on the highest, uncovered level. While there were all kinds of people shopping, the only ones I noticed were the young teens balancing multiple shopping bags on each arm with their tired looking mothers in tow. After a few hours of browsing god knows how many stores surrounded by people that reminded me of high school (a bad, bad memory), I only emerged with one pair of casual shoes that will hopefully not chew up my feet, one bra and one dress that I realize now is probably too summery for the weather I'll be enduring soon. Oops.

So that was fun. I slowly rolled home in the rain to avoid deathly collisions with other vehicles and then had to rush out again so that I could arrive in front of Chip Shop two hours later.

fish n chips
fish n chips

I had Chip Shop on my "to do" list for a long time. The thought of it gnawed away at my brain while whispering, "You...want...crispy food...borne forth...from large vats...of burning hot oil." (Yes, my brain speaks to me...very...slowly.) This is the stuff dreams are made of: golden, crispy, deep fried things, even things as simple as potatoes and fish. There's a high possibility that one will experience heart failure merely from being in the presence of such fatty delights, or even eye damage from the radiating yellow glow of the freshly fried foodstuffs. Delightful, no?


Under its thin, crispy, not likely to become soggy crust, the cod flaked apart with little fork poke-age. Of course, fish don't have much connective tissue anyway, but rarely does it go...floof! FLOOF! Kind of like that lamb I had at Cafe Mogodor, but in fried sealife form. I would have loved to eat every thick, perfectly fried chip, but there was too damn much for my stomach to handle. Seriously. In this case "fish and chips" was like "bucket of chips with some fish as a garnish" (and the fish portion was large). It's not a bad thing, nor is Chip Shop the only place that gives tub-sized portions of fries—I just wasn't used it. I felt disappointed when I could no longer stuff fat-ified chips in my mouth despite that my plate was still covered in a layer of them. If you and your eating partner want dishes that come with chips, I'd suggest that one person leaves out the chips ("Fish and ____") so that the two of you can share them from one plate and not feel like failures when you can't eat them all.

lamb curry (vindaloo), naan, rice
lamb curry, naan, rice

My two eating partners didn't want fried food! Gasp! The horror! John went for the lamb vindaloo with saffron jasmine rice and a side of naan (yup, Chip Shop also has a curry menu). The tender and spicy lamb curry tasted great, but the naan was a bit off. Methinks they don't have a tandoori oven. If you never had naan from an Indian restaurant before, you couldn't know what the flatbread is supposed to taste like. Otherwise, you would find it too dry and hard. Eh, bread is bread. I'll eat most of it unless it's stale.

vegetable shepherds pie
shepherds pie

Diana went with a vegetable Shepherd's pie, which like my fish and chips was heavy on the potato. Mashed potato! A whole pie! OF POTATO! (With some vegetables hidden inside.) Maybe she should've put the peas into the pies to make it more vegetable-y (well, a vegetable apart from the potato). I suppose the massive potato-ness of the dish resulted from the lack of meat that usually provides the bottom of Shepherd's pie. What do you replace the meat with? More potato!

I would definitely go back to Chip Shop. No, wait...I have to go back to Chip Shop, as I failed to get the most important thing: deep fried chocolate bar. Oooh yes, next time it's gonna be all about the desserts, baby. If I'm lucky I'll organize an outing with enough people so that we can order a gazillion items dim sum style and have our own British dessert (or pudding) buffet. Wipe out the whole menu in one go! That's my goal. It's good to have a goal, right? Even if it's not approved by health officials?

Part of the reason that we didn't get dessert was because we were planning to go to The Chocolate Room. (The other reason was that we were too stuffed with British food to eat any more British food.) Diana had a rare craving for cake. Ye know...the one we ate last week:

chocolate layer cake
chocolate layer cake of heavenly heaveness

I found it funny that she was craving chocolate cake—isn't that what I usually crave? Aren't I the only with the "OMG NEED IT NOW!" cravings and tendencies to eat things full of sugar, chocolate and/or flour? She and I knew that her stomach could only hold about half of that cake, maybe even less than that. By the end of the night her plate held the frosting skeleton of her cake along with some wayward cake chunks. I helped her out a bit. HELPED. Withmymouth. Ahem.

banana explosion
banana explosion

But only after finishing my dessert. The exact description escaped me soon after the waitress recited it to the table (damn short-ish term memory), but the name definitely had the word "banana" in it along with a descriptive word (not "explosion") that implied that the dessert defied the boundaries of conventional banana action. It consisted of a small piece of chocolate cake on a light, crunchy peanut crust, topped with caramelized banana slices, accompanied by a scoop of coffee ice cream and banana flavored whipped cream. Out of everything, the chocolate cake was probably the least impressive (not that there was anything wrong with it; imagine a neutrally light and moist cake...with chocolate in it), while everything else was pretty awesome. Although I don't like coffee, light and creamy coffee flavored ice cream is fine with me. I already loved whipped cream; add banana and I'll like it even more. The best part to me was the light peanut crust, which was seemingly composed of a gazillion delicate peanut-flavored candy flakes that shattered in your mouth like THE BEST MOUTH-PARTY EVER (aside from Pop-Rocks, maybe). Is that like praline, or am I thinking of something else? It reminded me of a chocolate bon bon filling.


Sean, who met up with us at the Chocolate Room since his body wasn't ready to handle Chip Shop's offerings (maybe later after the other fried things drain from his system), ordered the chocolate pudding. Its flavor was balanced as far as chocolate and sugar content goes. Nothing overpowering—just smooooooth, comforting, colloidal liquidy solid pudding goodness. Colloids are so delicious.

Oh, if anyone's wondering, John got a root beer float. No chocolate! Aw.

After I parted from the other Brooklynites to return to NJ, the sadness of not seeing my friends for the next four months settled in. Waiting on the empty elevated subway platform while staring at the rain-slicked tracks and darkness in both directions felt more depressing than ever before. Eeeverrrr befooooore. :[ And then like all lonely crazy people, I started talking to myself.

But Robyn, you'll make new friends!


You don't believe in yourself.


You'll be fine! Everything turns out okay.

...Yeah, okay.

Actually, I guess it might not.


I can't predict everything!


You need to lower your voice. French people don't like loud Americans. Hell, no one likes loud Americans. When you get excited, you tend to squeal.

Cool, I'll become a mute.

Nooo, you'll learn French, meet cool people, eat awesome chocolates and baked goods, and not want to go home!

...But who's going to hug me?

I dunno.



Chip Shop
383 5th Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11215

The Chocolate Room
86 5th Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11217

random stuff

Thank you so much for your comments and birthday greetings on my last entry. :) Go to Shake Shack!...if it's not too crowded. And I'd like to take more photos of people, but I luckily had Diana's 50 mm f/1.4 lens over the past couple of days that takes much nicer people-photos than my lens. Ahh, we'll see.

Natalia tagged me for the "5 Things to Eat Before You Die" meme. 5 things? 5 THINGS? [breathes out] My list may not be so great, but I'll try anyway.

In No Real Order, Five Things to Eat Before You Die (Assuming You Won't Die Tomorrow)

cookie innards
cookie innards

Chocolate chip walnut cookie from Levain Bakery. Oh baby. It's like eating dough. Except it's been cooked. Slightly. I'd say don't try to eat the whole thing by yourself, but I did it once and emerged unscathed! Over time you too can grow a special "Levain cookie" stomach where all Levain cookies go to die, untouched by less holy stomach acids that digest othe foodstuffs.


Chinese steamed whole fish. This is simple. The combination of flaky, soft flesh flavored with garlic and scallions and other things that go into Chinese dishes (look, ma, I'm too lazy to look it up!) is one thing I can't imagine getting tired of. (Granted, there are a lot of foods I can't imagine getting tired of, but they mainly reside in the "baked goods" department, not "things you find in aquariums".) The great thing about this dish is that you can tear away at the fish as its vapid eyes or gaping eye sockets look back at you! Heehee!

eel rice
eel rice

Unagi / Japanese grilled eel. From where, I wouldn't know what to specifically recommend,'s almost always awesome. Find a good restaurant and dig into sweet sauce-slathered eel. The meat should be soft as custard, except it's EEL FLESH, YO. (Yet the idea of eel flavored custard isn't appealing.)

sesame rice ball thinger
sesame rice ball thing

Fried Chinese Sesame seed ball filled with bean paste. It's just one of my favorite things. You can have the bliss of crunchy, chewy, sweet, sesame, and bean paste all at once for about 50 cents.

doomed strawberry
doomed strawberry

Fresh produce, paticularly strawberries and peas. These are two things I specifically recall as tasting infinitely more amazing fresh from a farm than from a grocery store. My first taste of freshly picked strawberries came from Vassar Farm during the summer of 2004 when I was stuck on campus...working. A few of my friends in the same media studies program picked buckets of strawberries that were still warm from being hugged by nature as I popped them into my mouth (they went from being hugged to being!), one after the other after the other times 100000 until I reached my end point of strawberry greed. I was horrified when I found out that they were going to make strawberry shortcake instead of eating them straight.

I'd tag people, but I'm too lazy. Ugggh! UGGGH! UUNGHGHG (wow, this sounds unpleasant.)

...Okay, here I go! Honey, Marvo, Kathy, YMG, and Carol. I know I could just email you guys, but I hope you're all reading this so I don't have to.


Kathy / September 1, 2006 2:05 AM

Neato! I've never been tagged before...hehe...I'm honored! :)
Your Chip Shop pictures are crazy man. They're like busting with golden brown crispy goodness. I can pratically taste it from this culinary wasteland of Claremont! Cheee. I would have flown over to help finish the fries!
No worries, you'll do awesome in Paris - how could people not like other people who like to eat?! Fly safe and take care!! (Oh crap. Plane food sucks...or...just gives you another excuse to go "plane food shopping" before you leave!) :)

G / September 1, 2006 5:21 AM

Oh the fish and chips looks great. What a goodbye meal ;) I envy you because of your staying in Paris, it's a wonderful city and even if it's full of Parisians you'll have time you'll always remember. What especially good is that you can keep writing about food :)) Please? :))

Boutros / September 1, 2006 7:22 AM

Best of luck to you. I love your site. You'll love Paris so much. Just think of all the yummy BREAD. And crepe-y goodness. I am getting all dizzy over here thinking of good French cocoa and a croissant. Bonne chance!

Daisy / September 1, 2006 9:11 AM

Hey! :D I know what you mean about the naan. My friends in Singapore brought me to a real Indian restaurant the last time I was there, and it's really really different.

Pictures great as usual. Yay for fried foods (in moderation)!

Oh yeah, my sister didn't really like the third dimension video either. She found it strange. Thanks for visiting my blog. ^_^

Cathy / September 1, 2006 9:28 AM

Safe travels! Don't worry, you're going to have an awesome time in Paris! I'm looking forward to reading about your Paris food adventures. Good Luck!

susannah / September 1, 2006 4:39 PM

mmmm eel is definitely a top 5. unagi don =) and i could never get tired of a chocolate chip cookie, the one from levain bakery is on my TOP to do (more like to eat) list.

Natalia / September 1, 2006 11:48 PM

Don't worry. The croissants will hug you! And there are lots of those in Paris, or at least that's how I imagine it to be :)

I like your list. I've tried 3 out of the 5, and the cookie is my favorite. It's hard dealing with cravings for those. Very, very hard.

Marvo / September 2, 2006 3:18 AM

I'm a meme killer, so I won't be passing it on, but here are the 5 Things I Would Eat Before I Die:

1. A McDonald's Double Cheeseburger - It's tasty, cheap, I've eaten a lot of them, and who knows, it might actually kill me before I die.

2. Wet li hing mui dried mango - Just the thought of li hing mui makes my mouth water. The thought of it also make my heart beat faster, thanks to the sodium in it. The best part is licking the li hing mui off my fingers. Also, this too could kill me before I die.

3. A warm chocolate chip cookie - I don't really care where it's from, as long as it's a freshly-baked chocolate chip cookie. I heart freshly-baked chocolate chip cookies. If the baker used shortening, this could also kill me before I die.

4. Very Vanilla Silk Soy Milk - If this came out of a cow, I would totally lay under it and suck on its udder to get the delicious slightly nutty milk. If the Very Vanilla Silk Soy Milk came in gallon form, I would buy it. Oh yeah, if I was sucking on a cow's udder to drink this and someone came over to tip the cow, this milk would probably kill me before I die.

5. Kobe beef - I've never had it, but always wanted to try it, and someday I will. I heard it's soooo good that its goodness might kill me before I die.

There you go! I've not tagging anyone, because I am a meme killer. But have fun in Paris. I look forward to your posts.

plume / September 2, 2006 1:04 PM

I hope you'll have a nice stay in Paris, I'm french but I only went there a few times.
I you go down south my offer to take you to a pizza tour in Marseille is still on!
Take care.

Lee / September 4, 2006 8:44 AM

wee hee, your blog is awesome! It's inspired me to go out and get full off of actual food-preparation place food, rather than bumming around at home getting bloated from frozen bread and cornflakes... who does crap like that? I do. For shame... for shaaame.

Anyway, I really like your blog :)

John / September 5, 2006 1:48 PM

Awww... sad Robyn? :( By the way, that was me... hiding behind the subway station pillar. You only thought you were talking to yerself, but it was ALL A HOAX! Ahem. Anyway, remember we're all missing you here, but hoping you have a wonderful time in the land of 98% butter pastries.

Janice / September 6, 2006 1:54 AM

Yay! I hope you spread your good humor and food discoveries with us still... you know those frenchies and their food! I hope they don't give you strange looks when you take awesome pictures of their croissants and baguettes n stuff. Have tons of fun!

mahek / September 29, 2006 12:31 AM

This photo of fish and chips makes me feel like eating it right now.
i love fish and chips but in india i could not find it at any normal restraunt.
indian food is very spicy and has a curry for most of its main course dishes and hence it is not found in normal restraunts it may be found in five star hotels which i do not visit.
thanks for sharing with us .

Charlotte & Vickii / July 5, 2007 9:48 AM

We're In Food Tec At The Moment.
And GOD We're Hungry.
We Want That Food.
Looks So GREAT!

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