Wednesday, January 20, 2010


So, I’m in Arizona, which I could write about. And I leave for South Africa on Saturday, which I could write about. Or I could post the movies from the variety show. But I haven’t even finished talking about my trip from last week. So let’s give that some shrift, even if it’s short.

No Apples, Big or Otherwise

Since I lacked the money or passion for shopping for material goods on this trip, I made up for it with food. Oh food, so often a replacement. As with shopping in general, I have powerful forces influencing my food purchases. On the one hand, I love trying new foods, dislike almost nothing, and generally consider myself a bit of a foodie, although I find that term ridiculous. Are basketball fans called basketballies? No, because it’s stupid. On the other hand, I do occasionally cringe at making expensive food purchases, because all food purchases are inherently indurable, and I hate spending a lot for fleeting moments.

But for this trip I made an exception. I was being a flavor tourist. The tastes of New York would be my souvenirs, my hobby and my sustenance. I vowed not to eat anything that I could find outside of New York, and succeeded as far as I could tell.

Cupcake Wars
If for no reason other than Lazy Sunday, I went to Magnolia Cupcakes. It was packed. I have no idea why New Yorkers love cupcakes, but they do. I mean really; cupcakes? Yes, they taste good, but I almost feel silly eating them. It’s like I can’t handle a whole piece of cake. And would you ever walk down the street eating a piece of cake? Anyway, like Liz, I wanted to go to there, and I did. I had the chocolate and the Hummingbird, which somewhat disappointingly didn’t contain any hummingbird. Because don’t you think hummingbird would be delicious? It was actually like a pineapple carrotcake, which was admittedly, quite good. However, Crumbs crushed Magnolia. Crumbs is advertised as New York’s best cupcakes, and they succeeded (beating the only other contender I tried.) I walked into a store on a whim, only to be accosted by cupcakes the size of my fist. Actually the size of a much larger man’s fist. They were so large, I ran away. Really I just wasn’t hungry enough to eat a little cake. But I returned later after I’d fed my hunger (by not feeding it) and faced the cupcake. The grasshopper cupcake was delicious. Winner: Crumbs.

Crepe Wars
Crepes on Columbus. Nutella and strawberry. Winner!

Hot Dog Wars
For my last 2 trips to NYC, one of my main goals has been to eat a NYC hotdog. The fact that I wasn’t able to achieve the goal of eating a hotdog is pretty indicative of my goal-setting skills. This trip I did. I had a street hotdog, which was fine but not amazing. But it fulfilled a goal, so gold star for me. I then went to Gray’s Papaya, because Barney Stinson did it once and so I felt obligated. And they were pretty dang good. Nothing fancy, just hotdog, kraut and special sauce. Washed down with papaya juice. Gray’s wins!

And now for the main event.

Pizza Wars!
Because what says New York like pizza. During my time in New York I had the following:
Tony’s Pizza – random store, owner of unknown middle eastern decent, pretty mediocre.
Campos – this hardly counts because it was California style pizza (blasphemy!) but it was the best portobello pizza I’ve ever had.
Ray’s Pizza – good NYC style pizza, but not unlike other I’ve had before.
Famous Ray’s Original Pizza – similar to Ray’s, slightly better, but admittedly I biased the results by ordering different toppings at different locations. Hawaiian is always going to score well.
Lombardi’s – by reputation, the first pizza in America. A very interesting pizza. Imagine growing up on McDonalds hamburgers. I imagine this isn’t too hard to imagine. Then one day you actually have a burger from a BBQ. Lombardi’s made other pizza seem like fastfood. Which is not to say I liked it 1000% better; it just tasted authentic.
Patsy’s – I’d have to say that this was my favorite. It was a little bit faker than Lombardi’s, but more substantial. It smelled so good that I ate my first piece on the subway rather than waiting to get home. Despite the fact that I literally ate pizza every day for the whole trip (I had leftovers from most of the above) I very nearly bought another pizza later because I liked the first so much.
Winner: Patsys!
However, my stomach wasn't able to handle more pizza or I would've gone to Grimaldi's and Totonnos. You have to leave something for the next trip.


Amy-Alisa said...

I love the image of you running away from a giant cupcake.

Erin said...

Amy, you might run too if you saw how big they are, and how many choices they have. It can be quite overwhelming. Perhaps we will have to go when you visit someday...