Andrew Hamilton on NYC, Food, and Roundheads

June 27th, 2005 · 2 Comments · Writing

[The following is a guest post by Andrew Hamilton.]

I have a strange memory.

My wife repeatedly tells me things I cannot for the life of me recall a mere two minutes later. This is a regular, nearly daily occurrence. She accuses me of not listening to her, and she may well be right, though I will never admit to it.

It’s not that I have a bad memory. I have a strange memory, or (in fairness to my wife) what might be called a selective memory. I can’t remember that she told me take out the trash or check on a pending bill, but I can pinpoint the precise moment in my high school history class (sophomore year) when I learned that the dissenting Protestants in 17th century England were called “Roundheads.” I could cite countless examples of this unfortunate phenomenon, if I could only remember them.

Last March, my wife and I traveled to New York with some friends. It was my first visit, and I was impressed. We toured the new MOMA, the Whitney, and the labyrinthine conglomerate of galleries that is Chelsea. We saw many poignant, important things, which I vaguely remember formulating poignant, important impressions about, all of which I have subsequently forgotten.

A month or so ago, Meg asked me if I wanted to guest blog about our trip to New York, give some impressions about the city and art therein. I was excited and extremely motivated; until I sat down to write. All of the aforementioned forgotten impressions remained as such. All of those lost moments of connection, floating anchorless in the frigid sea of my strange, selective memory.

But thanks be to that strange, selective memory, because even though I can’t recall what I thought about that big ass Monet in the MOMA foyer, I can remember what I ate and drank at every single meal for the duration of the trip. And that, my friends, is what I have come to tell you today.

In order, meals 1-15:

One –
Location: off Broadway on 100th, an apartment building, 12th Floor (It’s a residence. For safety reasons I have omitted the actual address. I have also forgotten the actual address).

Tidbits: homemade lasagna, made with real, visible chunks of garlic, fresh basil, and beautiful, fresh ricotta cheese. And, salad. The salad was good too, for a salad.

Libations: Wine. Very nice wine. It was red (3 glasses).

Two –
Location: The Abbey, a pub on 104th off Broadway.

Tidbits: none.

Libations: Guinness (2 pints).

Three –
Location: Lenny’s Bagels, on 98th and Broadway.

Tidbits: egg bagel with poppy seeds and onions, lox, cream cheese, chicken noodle soup.

Libations: coffee (3 cups).

Four –
Location: Dominico’s (or something like that), somewhere in Chelsea (memory foggy on this point due to amount of walking).

Tidbits: fresh bread, portabella mushrooms sautéed in balsamic vinegar and served on a bed of fresh spinach, quatro fromaggi pizza (all split with wife).

Libations: wine (1/2 liter, also split with wife).

Five –
Location: Otto, somewhere in the Village (see parenthetical thought in Location, Meal Four).

Tidbits: (shared with four other adults and semi-asleep three-year-old) bread, roasted vegetables (Brussels sprouts, yellow peppers, zucchini, something else very exotic and peppery), fancy type mushroom pizza, two other pizzas I can’t remember, gelato (three [or possibly four] kinds, one of which definitely included olive oil with sea salt and delicious, delicate blood tangerines, memory very hazy on this point because of the…)

Libations: Manhattans (2), with two black cherries soaked in brandy, wine (2 [possibly 3] glasses).

Location: Broadway Restaurant, on Broadway between 100th and 101st.

Tidbits: one egg (over-medium), corned beef hash, potatoes, four pieces white toast.

Libations: orange juice (fresh, 1 glass), coffee (w/cream, four cups).

Location: Gray’s Papaya, somewhere on Broadway near the Columbus Circle (see parenthetical thought in Meal Four, Location).

Tidbits: hot dog w/ sweet onions and mustard (1).

Libations: papaya juice.

Location: The Abbey, off of Broadway on 104th.

Tidbits: fish and chips.

Libations: Guinness (4 pints).

Location: The Metro Diner, on 100th and Broadway

Tidbits: French toast, bacon.

Libations: orange juice (fresh, 1 glass), coffee (4 cups).

Location: Chai, a Thai place somewhere in Brooklyn (see parenthetical thought in Meal Four, Location).

Tidbits: tom ga kai (sp?), spring roll, pad kiang (sp?)

Libations: Singha (1 bottle).

Location: See location, First Meal.

Tidbits: gigantic slices of garlic pizza from Sal and Carmine’s, located somewhere on Broadway.

Libations: wine (red, 3 1/2 glasses).

Location: hot dog stand on 75th and Madison.

Tidbits: hot dog with sweet onions and mustard.

Libations: none.

Location: ice cream stand in Central Park.

Tidbits: “nuts 4 nuts” candied cashews (shared w/wife).

Libations: Coke (not shared).

Location: Lucky Strike, somewhere in SoHo (memory hazy on this point, you know why by now).

Tidbits: horrifically expensive cheeseburger, fries.

Libations: (equally horrifically expensive bottle of) Budweiser (1).

Location: airport bar (& grill!) in JFK.

Tidbits: bruschetta (shared w/ wife).

Libations: Budweiser (1 20 oz. glass).

(Roundheads were named as such because they cropped their hair short in order to physically manifest the theological contrast between themselves and their Catholic counterparts, who wore their hair in lustrious, long, flowing locks, according to the fashion of the day. In case you were wondering.)

-Andrew Hamilton

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[Andrew’s wife, Amanda Hamilton, who whom he seems to have split most of his meals, currently has work up in the aforementioned Supersonic exhibition.]

Category: Writing

2 Comments so far ↓

  • Ms. Jen

    Ha! I love the fact that Meal #2 is just2 pints of Guiness and no food. Have Andrew guest blog more often! ;o)

  • Meg

    Hear that, Drew? I think we might need to sign you up to be a regular contributor : )
    H and I are headed to NYC next week, and we’ll be sure to try out some of your suggestions… mmm…

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