Founded by the late Daniel Rogov, welcoming foodies to discuss the dining scenes in Israel and abroad, along with all things related to kosher food.
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Bobby S

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Beyond Peanuts and CrackerJack

by Bobby S » Wed Apr 01, 2009 12:49 pm

This article in today's NY Times describes how some of the best known restauranteurs in New York City have opened outlets at the NY Mets baseball team's new stadium, Citi Field. These include Danny Meyer and Drew Nierpont. They've also lowered beer prices from $7.50 to $6.00.

I don't know if it will help, though. The new Met and Yankee ball parks have seen a sharp decline in ticket sales so far due to the exorbitant ticket prices (versus last year) and the effects of the economic downturn.

And yes, Rogov, the new Mets ball park will also feature Nathan's hot dogs. As Edmund O'Brien tells Robert Ryan at the end of The Wild Bunch, "It ain't like the old days [ie Ebbets Field], but it'll do." In fact, the exterior of Citi Field is designed to evoke the old Brooklyn field.
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Daniel Rogov

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Re: Beyond Peanuts and CrackerJack

by Daniel Rogov » Wed Apr 01, 2009 1:42 pm

Bobby.....

Only one question remains with regard to this subject: Will the Nathan's serve lobster rolls and chow mein sandwiches?
If not, I'm off to Coney Island and to the devil with the baseball game. If the Dodgers and the Giants ain't there what's it all worth?

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Rogov
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Bobby S

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Re: Beyond Peanuts and CrackerJack

by Bobby S » Wed Apr 01, 2009 8:19 pm

A minor controversy noted by architecture critic Paul Goldberger in the New Yorker is the appropriation of Dodger mythology, ie Jackie Robinson, in the new stadium. The Mets see themselves as the successors to the Dodgers, but in almost 50 years have failed to produce a pantheon like the one the Brooklyn team did. So they pretend Dodger history is somehow Met history.

Rogov, you might be pleased to know that Totonno's, the landmark pizzeria, is still going strong on Neptune Avenue. I was there in February. For those unfamiliar with Brooklyn, Totonno's is considered by most people to be the best, or one of the best, pizzerias in the world.
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Daniel Rogov

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Re: Beyond Peanuts and CrackerJack

by Daniel Rogov » Thu Apr 02, 2009 1:48 am

Bobby, Hi....

In the name of (a) full disclosure, (b) confession, and/or (c) making a total ass of myself, I have never been to Totonno's. I'm afraid my fidelity holds with the long-closed Gragiano's.

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Rogov
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Bobby S

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Re: Beyond Peanuts and CrackerJack

by Bobby S » Fri Apr 03, 2009 2:27 am

It's been there a long long time, and ranks today with DiFara's and Patsy Grimaldi's. Interestingly, though, none of these places serve Brooklyn pizza. They serve thin crust pizzas and are not at all like the neighborhood pizzerias sprinkled throughout the borough. The best one of these is? There's too many to mention, and whatever one's favorite is, it is based as much on familiarity as anything else.

An interesting trend, though: Italians are no longer going into the pizza business. Instead, the new places are being opened up by Albanian immigrants who, without lying, will let you think they are Italians.

A funny side note is a kosher pizzeria on Avenue J, on the same block as the divine DiFara's, that brags that it is so good because the owner "hired an Italian as his baker". It's funny because the assumption there is that all Italians are master pizza bakers. The slice is not bad, but nothing to write home about...unless you keep kosher and never went to DiFara's. For those of you not likely to be on Avenue J anytime soon, here is an indication of how good DiFara's is: On a typical weekday, the wait for a slice is--without exaggeration--about one to one and a half hours.

Some other Brooklyn culinary trends that I enjoy: The proliferation of Chinese restaurants serving Chinese, and not Chinese-American, food; the opening of several Alexandria style fish joints in the formerly Italian Bay Ridge, where you pick out your own fresh fish from the window and they grill it for you, and some really down home and delicious Mexican restaurants. There's always a laid back, homey vibe I enjoy in Mexican restaurants owned and run by Mexicans (as opposed to Tex-Mex and Cal-Mex). As you can see, these culinary trends follow immigration patterns.

PS Rogov, I went to the new Yankee Stadium today. Beautiful in every way, and improvement on the old dump still standing across the street. They feature Hebrew National hot dogs, but I am not sure the Hebrew National Chili Cheese dog they sell "answers to a higher authority". However, they have several food courts serving pizza, Latin food, southern BBQ, "retro-beers" like Shaffer, Ballantine, Pabst, etc, and a bunch of other things. I know you'll eat krembo with margarine before you go to a Yankee game, but thought you'd like to know.
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Daniel Rogov

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Re: Beyond Peanuts and CrackerJack

by Daniel Rogov » Fri Apr 03, 2009 11:09 am

Bobby, Hi....

Yesterday a good samaritan flying in from New York brought me a package of Hebrew National hot dogs. You will be proud of me for today I prepared those for lunch - using the officlal Nathan's style of first plunging them into boiling water and then finishing them on a griddle. The person sending the hot dogs was wise enough to include a jar of deli mustard with those. Okay, no hot dog rolls but delicious when rolled into freshly baked lafa bread. And yes, home-made French fries.

Allah achbar. God is indeed great!

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Rogov

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