Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Mantao dinner was very satisfying.

According to GoogleMaps it would have taken 17 minutes to walk to from work, but I had no desire to walk in the cold rain for that long. So $2 to the subway gods and a wrong turn later, I found the glorious restaurant row of 53rd between 3rd and 2nd. There were restaurants up and down the block, up and down the buildings. I wanted to eat at all of them. But instead I stuck with the plan, and I found Mantao a little bit down the block and entered.

There was a couple eating at the window and a couple waiting for their food. As I gathered my order and Groupon print-out, a delivery guy dropped off something green. I don't remember what he said it was, but I remember thinking Mmm...leafy. I ordered and paid the difference that the Groupon didn't cover and waited. A few minutes later, I was back on the street, salivating because all of the restaurants on the block looked delicious.

I made my way to the E train to get to the Port Authority--another $2--and took the bus home. Since the Groupon was $15 worth of food for $7, the $4 I spent on public transportation to get there was worth the expense.

Jon got home shortly after, and we each ate about half of the spicy pork bun, chicken bun, angus beef burger with spicy sambal sauce, and curry chicken Mantao pancake roll. All were delicious. I'd get the curry chicken pancake and beef burger again.

We have four more Groupons to use, so we'll definitely be back, but even without the coupons, I think we'd definitely visit again. There's still a lot to explore on the menu, so it's kind of exciting.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

CIA and Other Sites

The cooking one...

On our way down from Killington, we stopped to visit Jon's brother at Marist, which is just down the block from the CIA. Jon's never been there before, but since I have selectively excellent memory, I gave him a quick tour based on my only other time there when I went to celebrate the publication of ProChef 8 and discuss upcoming plans. I also met Chef Migoya and got some treats and lunch from the Apple Pie Bakery Café back then. The cafe is unfortunately closed during the weekend.

Other sites that we passed from Killington to Marist include: lots and lots of farms (like tons); Benedict Arnold's home; the first Santa Claus Club; the first New York public school; some chickens and horses; a drive-in movie theater that's right across the street from the Roosevelt estate/library, which is down the block from the Vanderbilt estate. (I got my first allergies from breathing in the fresh air of the Hudson Valley at the Vanderbilt estate back when I was visiting for a high school senior history honors trip. All that fresh air up there was not good for me.)

We met up with Jeremy, ate some sushi and other Japanese food from a place called Edo Sushi (the Edo-roll is surprisingly big and filling), and made our way home.

We were sore for about half of this week from skiing/snowboarding at Killington--it's nice to have immediate function in my back and legs now though.

Shoes Again (with photos)

Here are some pics of the shoes I mentioned way back when...and then bought...and mentioned again...I'm still in love with they were totally worth it! What was I saying about heels?

Nifty shoe bag:

Gray suede:

On my feet:

Rubber split soles:

So sweet!:

Shopper's Anonymous

Hello. My name is Christina. And I have a problem with online shopping...

JCREW by solaz featuring J Crew

Friday, March 26, 2010

Skiing at Killington

Jon and I are going to Vermont this weekend to go skiing/snowboarding. Though it was in the 70s and gorgeous last weekend, this weekend it's cold enough to snow in some places. I guess we don't have to worry about the mountain melting.


Thursday, March 25, 2010

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Good Question

My brother asked a good question about my posts today:

Dominic Solazzo - where is all this good food?6:20 pm

Mis amigos: Despana

We got cheese and ham from here too to eat for dinner--they have a nice spread of samples to try: chorizos, cheeses, olives, olive oil, jams. Everyone is really nice and helpful too.

We then walked up to Astor Wine and got what I like to call "one of each" (cause really why narrow down something that you're going to eventually buy anyway?): Kahlua, Priorat, 12-year-old Highland Park whiskey, pisco, Austrian Riesling (half bottle), Almansa, and a Cava.

Jon just made a really good cocktail with the pisco--a pisco sour with pisco, fresh limes, and bitters (and secret stuff).

We were supposed to watch the sunset from our porch in our new kick-ass rocking chairs, but instead we're sharing this cocktail watching me type least there's tomorrow.

Dom, we hope you get to Despana and have a nice lunch there soon!


The Chin prefers the apple. I think I so too. Still both are good and crispy.

Blueberry cheesecake

Interesting. It's savory almost. The cheese is strong like parmesan. The fruit and sweet brownish stuff (caramel?) helps a lot.

Ham Croquette!

Iberico Sandwich

So. Yummy.


Chorizo and toasted bread bits.

Chestnut Flauta

Whoa! So good. Chestnuts really work well with the cheese, meat, and peppers. I want another spoon of chestnut spread in my mouth.


Bacalao Croquette

Good, but not my fav. Want ham.


Chorizo, potatoes, eggs, and green pepper. Might just buy a flat of this and eat it for lunch this week. Zoo good!

KAS Apple Soda

Really good! Crispy apple-y. Fizzy.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

St. Who?

Passed by some really wonderful people on my way to Port Authority.

The best part: getting behind a man with green cords to get into the bus. The bus operator manager holding his hand to his face to show the driver the international (or at least national) sign for drinking. Bus driver nodding with understanding.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Wedding Advice V

Good Questions from a Bride

Did you go to Kleinfeld? Their website said most of their dresses are around $3500 plus. Just wondering if they are really that expensive, and if you went, did you have a good experience there.

I got the New York Mag Weddings issue and saw an Angel Sanchez dress - gorgeous. It's spring/summer 2010. But there was also an article there interviewing him and he said his ready-to-wear dresses start at $6000!

It's reasonable to find a designer dress around $2000-4000--almost every designer has a dress in that range. You may want to try to see if there'll be any trunk sales in the area: I don't think it lists 2010 yet though. I got my Amsale dress from Kleinfeld during their trunk show and saved $500, which was helpful.

Thanks for the website tips! I've asked a few ppl this question, but no one has answered me yet: How many reception venues did you visit before choosing one? Also, how did you handle the coordination of the availability of the church and the reception venue? Or did you do it so far in advance it didn't matter?

We visited 10--we knew we wanted a Chinese banquet (you pay by tables and not by person)--so we visited 4 places in Queens, 3 places in Chinatown, and 3 places in Midtown. The place with the cleanest bathrooms, most space, and free parking got our vote. And their dim sum was pretty good too.

Also, we picked our date over a year in advance, so we didn't have to worry about not getting the vendors that we wanted, thankfully.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Badger, BADger, BADGER

Mike and Carol had been married for three years. Mike was uxorious. Carol was gravid. Mike and Carol’s life together was good.

Their daily hypocoristic exchange was sweet but dumb: “baby” and “sweetie.” Despite their college education, they failed to ever come up with anything more exciting.

The couple that lived next door were Jim and Jem and their little guy Jam. Jim and Jem called each other and Jam “baby” and “sweetie.” The wall that divided their homes was paper-thin, and they too failed to come up with anything more exciting to call each other.

Jim and Jem wanted more babies. They were determined to be a proper cete, but it was hard with their full-time jobs as astronauts.

Mike joked to Carol that Jim and Jem would probably name their other kids after other condiments that are delicious on bread like "Marmalade" or "Peanut Butter" or "Mustard" or branch off into different flavors of jam like "Strawberry Jam." Baby Jam would be "Jam (original)," though what that flavor actually is was unclear.

It was when Mike said stupid things like this that Carol wished she had abulia. At least there would be a disorder that would force her to have to sit around while Mike spewed verbal vomit like this. The worst part about it was that she really liked "Jam" as a baby name, or maybe it was because she was constantly craving jam on any warm food now: cheese pizza, mushroom soup, dirty rice . . . fried chicken.

She didn't dare tell Mike to shut up though. Carol was a people pleaser, and she never wanted to upset anyone, let alone Mike. It wasn't Carol's fault that she was a people pleaser. Her mom made sure that Carol was a legatee of two things: a yacht named "Valgus," which looked like a tugboat and was named after her grandfather's valgus knee (he liked the name), and being a people pleaser.

While it may be peccant to wish for something so debilitating as abulia, was it really so much worse to be a people pleaser and detest it? Anyway, it was her legacy to be a people pleaser, and there was no point now in fighting it.

Carol looked down at the book of baby names that she was browsing through when Mike told her his joke--she hadn't gotten to the x, y, or z sections yet.

Genesis of a Short Story

So that short story I wrote way back when, it's based on this article about DFW that I thought might be fun to try to write a story based on the vocabulary words in the article to kill some time during lunch.

Excerpt from the article is here:

Some other words circled by Wallace in his dictionary and their definitions (a longer list is available here):


-noun Psychiatry.

a symptom of mental disorder involving impairment or loss of volition.



a number of badgers together.





1. a pet name.
2. the practice of using a pet name.
3. the use of forms of speech imitative of baby talk, esp. by an adult.



a person to whom a legacy is bequeathed.

1.sinning; guilty of a moral offense.
2. violating a rule, principle, or established practice; faulty; wrong.

doting upon, foolishly fond of, or affectionately submissive toward one’s wife.

1. an abnormally turned position of a part of the bone structure of a human being, esp. of the leg.
2. of or in such a position; bowlegged, knock-kneed, or the like.

No words were circled in the x, y, or z sections of the dictionary.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Monday, March 1, 2010

People Say the Stupidest Things

"Not that I had to tell you, but I thought you should know anyway."
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