Friday we hit up the West Side. My ma had a meeting at the Columbia medical school. I accompanied her (vair interesting) and then we wandered around the Upper West Side, my mom’s old stomping ground and my favorite part of NYC.
We were hit up with hunger, and decided on one of my favorite dining out experiences: INDIAN BUFFET!
Here is the adorable restaurant, with my mom in the foreground of it. Her smile looks a little weird because I was making her laugh: “NO FAKE SMILING!”
It was vair cute on the inside. Lest you think we pick lame places to eat with no customers, let me mention by the time we ended up sitting down for “lunch” it was 3:00.
As you will recall, I am ludicrously indecisive when it comes to buffets and get EVERYTHING. This was no exception.
Counterclockwise from the top: awesome tomato bisque; black and brown lentils; eggplant curry; spinach and chickpeas; “mixed vegetables curry” that had the rather brilliant addition of BROCCOLI; basmati, lots of condiments; puffed rice and veggie salad.
I love Indian condiments. That red spicy relish? I ate a lottttt of it.
Had to go back for faves (and dessert!)
Left to right, that’s more eggplant; more mixed veggies curry; more red relish and mango chutney (<3); half a FRITTER they put out that was delish; and carrot pudding (!)
Plus obvi there was naan.
Dinner was also ludicrously cool. We headed downtown to the Bowery, and hit up a truly fabulous restaurant with my mom’s best friend from college, who always has awesome restaurant recommendations (she actually met her fiance at an Italian place where he was her waiter. We haven’t had that kind of luck with her recommendations yet, but there is hope!)
The restaurant was the (dimly lit, sorry in advance!) Quartino, a place with seriously cool food philosophy.
All whole wheat flour, all organic, all raw extra virgin olive oil, all local veggies and cheeses. So cool!
Now that I’m 21, we started with wine :D Not that they carded, hahahaha. This was a bordeaux blanc, on the recommendation of our super nice waitress, and was fabbity fab.
Ze bread: usually I shun breadsticks and dig into the bread, but this was the opposite- those breadsticks were HEAVEN! Perfect flavor and texture.
We split an appetizer of what they called “baked spinach”- we were kind of expecting something like those cheesy dips, but this beautiful fresh thing arrived:
Perfectly tender-chewy spinach with luscious olive oil, nutty parmesan, and lemon. Lovely! I have no idea how to recreate this texture, but oh how I want to try.
My (tragically dark and unphotogenic) entree:
Linguini with fresh artichokes and parmesan. Ethereal. Anytime I can get fresh artichokes, I do.
Artichoke and ricotta ravioli with arugula-pinenut pesto. SO GOOD.
Phyllis’s, the most colorful:
It cracks me up how people put up with my food blogging and then even start asking me to take pictures of their food. I guess everyone wants their 15 minutes!
More NYC to come!