Sunday, August 12, 2007

vegetarians beware

Well, maybe not 'beware,' but you won't find much for yourselves here today.

People who occasionally indulge in barbecue, on the other hand, have come to precisely the right place. This week i had occasion to enjoy not one but two superfab soulfood establishments in our fair city.

The first one was Spoonbread, on 110th between Columbus and Manhattan Aves. Apparently this is a place Bill Clinton likes to order from, but you shouldn't let that stop you. Went there only moderately hungry and shared the sampler plate, which included: fried catfish, smothered chicken, a short rib of beef, a pork rib, black eyed peas, green beans w/garlic and mac & cheese. I'm drooling all over again writing about it. Oddly enough, the things that really stood out as 'so good you won't be able to find the like elsewhere' were the vegetable portions - the green beans and the stab of collard greens i took from a friend's plate may have had the most potential for a spiritual experience. But everything was very good (and i may have to get the book that supposedly started it all...)

Went to the other, less famous, place yesterday for brunch. It's called Pies-n-Thighs (gotta love that name) and, well, you might not think it's worth taking the L out to Bedford, then walking down to South 5th, then cutting almost all the way back over to the river to sit beneath the Williamsburg bridge in a 'courtyard' surrounded by barbed- and razor-wire when you're already insanely hungry because one of the guys who was supposed to meet you didn't bother to show up or call and you waited for half an hour before deciding he just wasn't showing (those of you who know me know that i HATE that), but believe me, it is. The only reason i don't hesitate to write about it for fear that this tiny place will soon become crowded is that most folks won't believe me, and/or suffer from that obnoxious fear of leaving Manhattan that plagues so many otherwise reasonable people. But this place is borderline transcendent. Had biscuits-n-gravy with eggs: so, ok, i'll get the nitpicking out of the way - the eggs were too done to be properly 'over easy' and the gravy may have been just a teensy bit milky and thin. But it tasted so good, that it would be almost a crime against food to get hung up on such details. The biscuits were, um PERFECT, and the gravy was superdelish, with big giant chunks of sausage in abundance. And, oh that's right, i had a friend with me too - she had hash-n-eggs (the menu features many dishes with an -n-). By now you may not be surprised to find that this was no ordinary hash: its base is big chunks of barbecued pulled pork that was smoked in the big ol' smoker that stands there in the alley with us (i couldn't bring myself to call it a courtyard again).

Omigod omigod and they have pie!!! We were sufficiently full at this point (in spite of how hungry we were when we arrived) that we decided to share a dessert. Which dessert was a peach, raspberry, blueberry crumble. Oh. My. God.

I'm just going to stop now before i commit an act of violence.

1 comment:

syb said...

thanks for making my mouth water. i have been remembering those collard greens all weekend... mmmm.
and the cobbler you just described made my breakfast-fullness disappear in an instant.
and i might just visit the darkside for biscuits-n-gravy of that description.