It Was the Best Meal I Never Had

Oh, my. Where in the world have I been? I took a trip to Gotham, it’s true, but I didn’t mean for it make me as mute3229336914_40f8602678_b for nearly three weeks. Add on the mounds of work I faced when I got back and the nasty cold I acquired just as I was getting on top of things, and you can see why I had to hit the pause button and go underground for awhile. I’m better now and doing a little dance, not only because it’s Friday, but also because Edible Cities just creaked over the 5,000 viewer mark. Who are all of you interesting people? Are you all in love with food too, or are you just looking for Cafe Boy as much as the next girl and guy are?

It’s with a satisfied sigh that I report about my trip to New York City. One of my authors was invited to be on the Today Show, of all things, and since her travel partner couldn’t make it, I tagged along as both paparazzi and porter. This is Ronelle Coburn, a master hand analyst who uses the unique markings on your hands to peer deeper into your soul than your mother, grandmother, or best friend can. It’s true. She peered into mine and now she knows more about me than I do.

Truth be told, I didn’t expect to be all that involved with the Today Show experience. I was looking forward to updating my facebook status while eating a free bagel in the green room, and that’s about it.

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I was surprised when the page invited me to join them in prep, but off I went to see what there was to see. The hair and makeup stylists converged on Ronelle and spruced her up for TV in what seemed like a few minutes.

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I waited in the wings, taking pictures whenever it seemed appropriate.

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Next, I was invited by Danielle, the producer, to hang out on the set while the segment went live. The whole thing was surprisingly fun and casual. Ronelle was mic’ed and built up a bit of a rapport with Lester Holt before they went on air…

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…while I nosed around the kitchen-set…

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…discovering what cook books the Today Show people deem worthy enough to keep in the kitchen.3229104454_3c03019da4_b

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Someone yelled, waved, or grunted, I’m not sure which, and suddenly the cameramen snapped into formation, the segment was taped, and we were quickly congratulating Ronelle on handling her first national TV spot with such grace and skill. Way to go, my friend, and thank you for allowing me to be a part of such an important experience.3228471673_46a68ec909_b

During the rest of the trip, I also reconnected with three of my closest friends, saw Jamie’s new apartment in Park Slope, danced to some top-shelf music way too late with Shawn on a Sunday night, and smoked a hookah loaded with Double Apple hash.

I stumbled into a literary reverie in the West Village and got lost in world class art at MoMA and the Met. I walked for hours at a time without a subway map, doing my flaneurian thing, capturing moments as I love to do.

I ate oysters for the first time at Angel’s Share with Earl-Grey-infused grape vodka to wash it down.

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I walked 20 minutes out of my way for a killer cup of coffee at 9th Street Espresso.

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I ate a cheese puff (or two) from Murray’s.

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I ate a cheeseburger at Market Table.

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I ate a long-awaited tagine at Le Souk with Shawn. This place was so fantastic I can’t even get into it here.

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I ate a 17-dollar architectural appetizer at Brassiere 8 1/2.

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I ate a mushroom fritter at the Met.

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I ate a mezze plate at Kashkaval with Kallie.

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There’s more, of course, but you probably understand what I’m saying. I was anxious to see the somber face of Manhattan again, which always makes me feel a rush of exhilaration. The stories that led me there ten years ago welcome me back to the place where my mind feels free.

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8 thoughts on “It Was the Best Meal I Never Had

  1. Joie de vivre

    What a fun trip and an amazing experience! The backstage workings of the Today show was fascinating. And what did you think of your first oysters? Addicting huh?

  2. Carrie Post author

    Joy – Addicting? I’m not so sure, at least not yet. The oysters tasted exactly like we we put on top of them: scallions, soy, lemon, and maybe some roe, or whatever that was. I think it’s probably a taste that I will acquire over time, like mussels, which I eventually grew pretty fond it.

  3. Angelique

    I think I would like a tangine for breakfast, thank you. Great foodie recap! I want your NYC experience to be mine, too! And what a grocery list : )

  4. Angelique

    Hm, I think I meant to say, ‘I would like tangine for breakfast’ instead of ‘a tangine’. Anyway, this morning I will go without.

  5. Michael Rivers

    What a great experience!! Thanks for sharing the story and the photos. I love hearing/seeing backstage stories. I can’t wait to get back to NYC again. It’s been almost 2 years. Too long!!

  6. Carrie Post author

    Ang – I’m sure you and I could put our creative heads together and make a fine breakfast tagine. I can see it already.

    Michael – I had waited too long to go to NYC too. I always think it’s strange how everything changes yet still feels the same every time I go.

  7. Servet

    Wow, what a trip Carrie, and I am not just referring to the Double Apple hash. (I think it’s great that you shared the fact that you took the term Big Apple to heart!) Okay, enough of that. One thing I can say with all honestly, I am truly famihed and have an uncontrollable desire to hop on a plane right now. As for the guy, what can I say? He had me at Saffron. Can’t wait to hear all about it!

  8. Carrie Post author

    Servet! Thank you for reading and commenting. Speaking of eating, what about California food? That’s almost the heart of eating in this country, and I know little about it. Also, “he had me a saffron” was the sweetest thing to say. So true.

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