June 18, 2010
In April, I read the New York Times review of Red, a new two-man play about the artist Mark Rothko, with whom I have long been obsessed. “I want to see that,” I said—and, so, I bought myself a plane and theater ticket for June. Last Sunday afternoon, I sat in the very front row of The Golden Theatre, so close I could have spat on Alfred Molina, and watched their incredible performances just hours before Red won a Tony Award for Best Play. Such is the magic of New York.
There’s the magic of half-a-day spent at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (which I’ve loved since I read this book), followed by the best apple streudel I’ve ever had at the glamorous Café Sabarsky inside the Neue Gallerie.
Followed by some wandering around Chelsea Market (by “wandering,” I of course mean “dropping cash on kitchen goods”) and dinner with friends.
There was a magical tour of the cheese caves below Murray’s on Bleecker Street–an incredible experience. So incredible that it deserves its own post, coming next week.
I also had a chance to visit my friend Betsy at her beautiful bakery, Ninecakes, in Red Hook. She makes the most incredible cakes—when I was there, she was working on a fresh strawberry cake & nine dozen cupcakes for a wedding upstate!—but doesn’t use any fondant, instead coating her cakes in the lightest but still decadent, creatively flavored butter creams. Not to mention, she’s an incredibly kind and generous human being and as I can now attest personally to the deliciousness of her cake, I am thrilled but not surprised by her success.
Museums are magical to me—the handcrafted bicycle exhibit at The Museum of Arts & Design blew me away, as did the Rubin Museum of Himalayan Art, as did pretty much everything at MoMa, especially the Rothkos I visited the morning before seeing Red. I also went to the Tenement Museum for the first time at the suggestion of a friend and would highly recommend a tour there—they also, as it turns out, have one of the best (if cramped!) gift shops in the city.
There was magical eating, too, naturally! Seriously good fried chicken at Sidecar in Brooklyn, pork buns at Momufuku Ssam bar, Italian at Paprika, chocolate chip cookies at City Bakery, and an amazing end-of-trip meal at Aldea, during which I put away my camera & phone and simply enjoyed. Since I was sitting at the chef’s table, with a direct view into the kitchen, and since the food was phenomenal, that wasn’t at all hard.
Of course, so much of the magic of any trip comes inside unplanned moments: cheering on Team USA, stopping to write postcards, discovering a fantastic bar, winding up on a rooftop in the East Village late one Saturday night.
Thank you for letting me indulge my fondness for this trip—I know it’s a departure from my usual post type, but I hope ya’ll don’t mind. Back to your regularly scheduled recipe posts in a few days.