[Pink Pig Time Machine by Wilfrid: November 7, 2015]
A double header coming up, because I'm a week behind with this.
Something new in the East Village, on Avenue A, in the tall building at number 34: Mo Pitkins' House of Satisfaction. Conceived as a bar, restaurant and art space, this ambitious project installed a bar in the front of the house, a Jewish-influenced dining room behind it, and had at least two (as I remember) performance spaces upstairs.
The walls of the bar featured a Sardi's-like gallery of contemporary downtown performers painted right on the wall. Whatever happened to that? Because, of course, the dream didn't last. Over the months, the restaurant became a downstairs performance space, the program shrank, and it eventually closed, first to become an uninteresting dive bar, and now the Ruff Club, a sort of day bar for dogs.
But when it first opened, I had some really quite good meals there (and years before anyone thought of Sadelle's). First go around: excellent potato latkes with apple sauce and sour cream; a Kosher rotisserie chicken with mash; brisket with "Coney Island" fries--crinkle cut in tribute to Nathan's--and chocolate cake with cream. No, not a kosher kitchen.
The next day involved pleasant parenting: first the Saturday morning childrens' session at Poet's House; then some noodles, chicken and rice at Asian Diner; finally, a showing of that Oscar-winning masterpiece, "The Curse of the Were-Rabbit."
Supper was at the Ukrainian: tripe soup, veal liver with onions (for my toddler, believe it or not), Segedin goulash for me.
On Sunday I cooked: estofado de perdriz, fingerlings, and a bottle of Cornas "La Geynale" 2000. Yes, partridge stew.
I must have had some time off work the following week, because I see leisurely lunches at Tides (oyster BLT) and Landmarc (tartine with omato, eggplant, goat cheese; a bottle of Zind). One evening took me to Marie's Crisis Cafe, that reassuring Village standby, and then to Mercadito Grove for supper (a guacamole tasting and baja fish tacos). I read Dowson's delightful "Apple Blossoms in Brittany" before bed.
The following weekend, dinner at Mas:
Oysters with cider jelly
Stuffed guinea-fowl, cabbage wrap
My diary is unenlightening on the subject of trout "Piscator," but an old review by Adam Platt helps out: it "consisted of silvery wheels of cool trout stuffed with ramps and mashed smoked trout and set on a salad of fennel and pearl onions." Nice.