Saturday, January 3, 2009

New Year's Day at the Roebling Tea Room, Momofuku Milk Bar, and more

Priya and I had gone to a party in the same building as the Roebling Tea Room for New Year's Eve, and then we stayed at my apartment (which is 50 feet from the RTR), so it was only logical that we'd head there for brunch on New Year's Day. We put in our names and then returned to my apartment to spend the 30-minute wait picking out a movie to see later.

I'd been here for brunch several times, and each time I'd ordered the intriguing-sounding Bone Marrow Breakfast only to be denied. It seemed like they were always out. I began to suspect that it was merely a fake menu item designed to give some foodie cred to the menu. So I had a backup in mind when I ordered it today.

Shockingly, the waitress nodded and wrote it down. Oh yes, they had it. I began to have second thoughts--not about the marrow, but that the "chopped egg and celery" on the side was perhaps mayonnaisey--but we asked and my fears were put to rest (in fact, the server looked insulted, and said, "We never use mayonnaise for any binder." A man after my own heart). On to the marrow.

On the plate were four huge rounds of cow femur, two pieces of toast, and a side of chopped hard-boiled egg and chopped celery (no mayonnaise). It seemed that the best way to eat it was to use a butter knife to scoop a veiny blob out of the bone, spread it on the bread, top it with celery and egg, and eat it like a piece of meaty, rich toast. It was very delicious, and the marrow did kind of blend with the egg and celery to make a non-mayonnaisey (read: non-gross) version of egg salad on the toast. The clear, sweet lychee tea I had on the side was a nice complement to the fatty butteriness of the breakfast.

Priya had her usual order of baked cheddar eggs, grits, raisin fennel toast, and apple butter. Ultimately, it was a good meal, but for $11 I wish it had included one more piece of toast and one or two more rounds of marrow, because I essentially paid $11 for two deliciously buttered pieces of toast.

Priya and I then went to the movies to see Benjamin Button (decent, but really indicative of the poor quality of movies this year that the NYT wrote that it was "dazzling"--Priya hated it though) and stopped at the new Momofuku Milk Bar beforehand for movie snacks. We tasted the soft-serve (snickerdoodle, which I liked but Priya didn't, and salty pistachio, which we both liked, but I felt was a little like eating a spoon of peanut butter--good, but you don't want more than one spoon). I bought a slice of banana-green curry bread for $2 (delicious, but the curry was hardly there as more than a faint spiciness) spread with kimchee butter for $1 (super intense and difficult to enjoy fully, especially as I ended up buttering the bread [and my fingers] in the dark during the movie). For a few dollars more we bought three cookies--the compost (which had everything in it from potato chips to coffee grounds), chocolate-chocolate (a little much), and a cornflake and marshmallow and chocolate chip cookie (excellent). It's a sign of how dense and buttery they were that I could only eat a bite of each before wrapping them up for leftovers.

Then home for dinner, where we homemade tomato sauce and turkey meatballs and broccoli rabe and used frozen dough to make turkey meatball and broccoli rabe pizza, a favorite of mine. It came out great and we ate it while we watched pot-smoking Swinging Sixties Cairenes in Adrift on the Nile. We even got to use the leftover sauce and meatballs and broccoli rabe as the basis for a pasta dinner (using perciatelli) on Saturday night with Sam, Erum, and Nooria. Yum!

1 comment:

Sarah said...

After reading several of your posts, I'm so jealous of your restaurant options - I'm in rural New Hampshire.

Thanks for the link, by the way.