Johnny Ad’s

We were lucky enough to squeeze in a visit to Johnny Ad’s on our way up to Provincetown. Our feast of fried belly clams and clam fritters was probably the best meal we had during the trip. Just like the Hamptons (or anywhere else with a captive audience of wealthy visitors, I guess), we found that Cape Cod has its share of high-priced, mediocre restaurants.

Johnny Ad’s, 910 Boston Post Road, Old Saybrook CT 06475


Some random CLE summer moments…

Grilling the day’s haul from the West Side Market.

Drinks at L’Albatros.

Kimchee mandoo

How I’ve missed you, dumplings from the little snack shop attached to Hanyang Supermarket.

15051 Northern Boulevard, Flushing NY 11354

Fun at Costceaux

I got a kick out of this. Just imagine Ripert’s reaction had he noticed the 250-pack tubs of MREs that are often available, or his response to the 6-person inflatable pool party raft (complete with cupholders) that forms a key component of the summer impulse buy aisle.

Hello, it’s me.


Green Chili Bhaji

Originally uploaded by warmleatherette

I guess I can add food blogging to the list of digital things that I fail at, along with managing fantasy basketball teams through an entire season and keeping a tumblr page going for more than a few weeks. Still, every now and then I get the urge to hold forth about things I like or post a photo of something delicious. A good example of the latter is these deep-fried green chilis from Sri Ganesh’s in Jersey City. I can assure you that as good as they look, they tasted even better.

I did not like this beer

Dragon Stout

Overpoweringly malty and syrupy. It might be an interesting addition to a boozy cake, though.

We make chorizo

The pound of ground pork that’s been hanging out in our freezer for a couple of months was put to good use this week. We picked a recipe from this site (“Chorizo Mexicano”), halved it, and added a couple of chopped Scotch bonnets for extra heat. Sadly, we had to omit the extra quarter pound of pork fat since we didn’t have any on hand. We also didn’t have the time to store it for a few days in a crock (nor did we really have a suitable crock). Still, the chorizo came out very well (if a bit leaner than we’re used to), and it was a really quick process – maybe 30 minutes from start to finish.

More Katz’s-related crankiness

Why does it always have to be a contest? That said, I’m only too happy to offer my not necessarily expert opinion based on one visit to Schwarz’s and many visits to Katz’s. While I enjoyed my sandwich at the former, for me it’s Katz’s all the way, and I must (yes, must) take issue with a few things in the original post:

1) The size question. I do NOT think they’re equivalent. I had no trouble eating a whole Schwarz’s smoked meat sandwich (and in fact also ate french fries and a bunch of half-sours along with it), but I have to go halfsies on a Katz’s pastrami sandwich (and I apologize for using the word “halfsies”).

2) The mustard issue. Ok, dude, knocking Katz’s because the counter guy put too much mustard on your sandwich is nuts. YOU PUT THE MUSTARD ON THE SANDWICH YOURSELF.  Then you won’t be all, “Waah, it’s too mustardy! Waah!”

3) The fattiness issue. Like the mustard issue, this one also has a very simple solution. When you taste the sample slice the meat cutter offers you, you politely say, “I’d like that a bit fattier, please.”


thingsiate posted a link to the Time Out cheap eats list. Since I actually spend a fair amount of time in Murray Hill, a neighborhood maligned for many reasons, I thought I’d offer my 2 cents on foods both cheap and not so cheap.

1) The weekend brunch at Dhaba is a great option for the very hungry bargain-hunter. $12.95 gets you an AYCE buffet that features 8 or so items (a mixture of veg/meat options, including a few more unusual dishes like their achari lamb), rice (regular basmati and a biryani) and dessert (golub jamun and excellent kheer). Plus, you get tandoori chicken, poori/naan, and some snacky chaat-type stuff brought to your table (the last item is an especially nice treat).

2) Don’t neglect the French Dip at the Waterfront Ale House. It may be $2 more than the pulled pork or chicken sandwiches, but you get a behemoth that will provide you with lunch for the next day. However, if you want your bill to stay reasonable, you need to neglect the beer list. Pints start at $6, so if you decide that you’d like to have a couple with your meal (a not-unreasonable thought since you’re at an ale house, after all), you veer out of the cheap eats category very quickly. Kind of a bummer (also a bummer is their really stingy excuse for a happy hour: $1 off drafts from 5pm-7pm, if you’re seated at the bar. Whoop-de-damn doo. I think they get away with it because it’s one of the only tolerable bars in the area).

3) People line up outside Penelope for their shabby-chic “homestyle” menu (a wait of 2 hours is not uncommon), but it’s really not that great (it’s basically a less-good version of Kitchenette). It’s just better than many similarly priced but awful, anonymous joints in the area that get by catering to the needs of the popped-collar demographic (hard-drinking, tacky nightlife and unchallenging, Bloody Mary/Mimosa-heavy brunches). If you’re in the mood to spend $15-$20 on a Saturday afternoon, go to Resto instead and load up on chicken and waffles or boudin with scrambled eggs.

4) Grandma pie from Rosa’s Pizza. Order it well done. Proceed with caution with the rest of the menu, but the GP is a real winner.

5) Tandoori fish from Haandi: highly spiced, golden brown, and tender. It’s well worth putting up with the frequently rude service and chaotic atmosphere.

More Dogs

Windmill dog

Originally uploaded by warmleatherette

Looking at the Village Voice’s hot dog round-up, I was reminded that I never posted this photo from last September’s Max’s vs Windmill taste test. The Windmill dog was delicious, but I still give Max’s the edge. A bit more snap (they definitely griddle until well done), and I can’t get enough of that hot relish. Sadly no photo of the latter, but enjoy gazing at the Windmill’s offering in all its glory.

Max’s, 24 Matilda Terrace, Long Branch NJ
The Windmill, 586 Ocean Boulevard, Long Branch NJ (multiple locations)