I took this photo on the F train on the way to Coney Island yesterday evening. I was watching this little boy kneeling on the subway seat, looking out the window with the light shining on his face. He had such a sweet and serious face and the light was so beautiful… I had to capture it. He was with his father so I asked his permission. I also asked the boy himself. They were both agreeable, so I snapped a few shots… then I brought the camera over and showed them both the pictures. I always feel like that gesture goes a long way to establish a friendly tone.
Meanwhile, Coney island was totally fun. Tomas (Adam’s nephew) lives in California and is used to Disneyland – – so it was a bit of a culture shock for him. He was appalled at the guys running the ‘pop a balloon with a dart’ booth, who tried to scam us. Take note… if they ever offer you a free dart – they are sure as hell going to try to trick you into throwing more than one – which is where they get you at five dollars a pop!! He also commented that most of the people who work the rides are miserable, not smiling, not friendly and supremely grumpy. I’ve come to realize though – that this is all part of the charm of Coney Island. It’s gritty… it’s dirty… it’s a far cry from Disneyland. But it sure as hell has flavor!
Now I’m in South Burlington, VT, sharing a hotel room with my parents. We had an amazing dinner tonight at The Bearded Frog. We were piggies… we wanted to try lots of things on the appealing menu. Our dinner included:
Spring Pea Soup with VT Smoke & Cure Ham & Mint Creme Fraiche
Watercress Salad with Prosecco Vinaigrette, Pickled Beets, Willow Hill Vacquero Blue Cheese & Toasted Almonds
Venison Cigar Rolls with Maple & Horseradish Dipping Sauces
Graham Cracker Crusted Calamari with a Lime & Chive Emulsion
Buttermilk Marinated Pork Chop with Rosemary Bacon White Beans, Sauteed Kale, Braised Red Cabbage and an Apple Cider Reduction
Grilled Lamb Loin with Moroccan Vegetable Mash and a Mint Salsa Verde
Grilled Filet Mignon with Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Horseradish Compound Butter
Of course, in my favorite style, we shared tastes of every dish – the overall winners being the split pea soup and the lamb. The rosemary bacon white beans that came with my pork were unbelievable (my favorite part of the dish & overall standout for me)…. super rustic, hearty and homey with a deep porky flavor and an awesome spice (not sure where that came from). My first bite of the beans totally channeled that moment in Ratatouille, where the mean old restaurant critic gets transported to his childhood with one bite of the Ratatouille. Yum.
I also really enjoyed the lime chive emulsion that came with the calamari. The calamari were fried in a graham cracker crust and were sitting on the plate in a layer of this creamy emulsion. The dish ended up taking on the flavor of key-lime pie… I guess that’s probably what they were going for… and for me, it totally worked – even though calamari is not necessarily one of my favorite food items. I’m still a bit of a seafood wuss.
So after all that yummy rich food, we’re going to stuff ourselves tomorrow with cheese at the VT Cheesemakers Festival. I cannot wait! Then I’m going to return to NYC and go on a diet! Yikes!