I’m a bit obsessed with New York. Since I was a teenager I’ve been seduced by the city’s image; it’s cool, a melting pot, a bit dangerous (though far less so these days) and was a centre of so many cultural happenings in the 20th century. Beatniks, Bob Dylan, Andy Warhol, The Chelsea Hotel, Patti Smith, punk and hip hop are all synonymous with the city and the sense that it’s a place where things happen.
On my first trip there I was beyond excited but also apprehensive, half expecting it not to live up to my high expectations and not really be like what you see in the movies. I needn’t of worried. The city was loud, vibrant, friendly and resonant of so many of my favourite books, films & TV shows; Just Kids (Patti Smith), Mean Streets and The Sopranos among them.
Something I hadn’t thought about before that first trip was the food, which is strange as it’s now a main reason I’d visit! The selection is vast and the standard generally high. Many of my best food memories are ones from New York* and I’m sure I’ll write about some of them on here but one thing I think they do better than anywhere else is brunch. There are an absolute abundance of places offering a good brunch with that excellent American brand of service. Common dishes that I remember having are Eggs Benedict/Florentine/Royal, various omlettes & home fries, Huevos Rancheros and Farmers Breakfast, washed down with a Mimosa (Bucks Fizz) or a Bloody Mary and loads of good coffee. All best enjoyed at a leisurely pace and with friends.
I should mention at this point that you can get a really good brunch in London these days. Brits have finally accepted this informal breakfast/lunch hybrid and are swarming to places such as the Breakfast Club to enjoy it; the annoyingly long queue outside every weekend testifies to this. I’ve also heard good things about the brunch at The Riding House Café and The Corner Room and plan to visit very soon. I’m sure I won’t go hungry until my next New York trip anyway.
The picture here is my homage to the Farmers Breakfast that I made this morning: scrambled eggs with crumbled feta cheese, fried potatoes (home fries) with paprika, spinach and avocado. Most enjoyable and also made me think about good times had in New York.
*Visit the Corenelia Street Café in Greenwich Village for an awesome brunch.