food 10.13.04

The Griddler

Someone who moved to the city recently asked us 'what are the three things every New Yorker should have?' There are plenty of snarky replies to that (and please feel free to email us with your snarky and/or earnest answers to that question), but we went the more-or-less earnest route: 1) boundless curiosity 2) a vice — or at least a passion — to indulge and 3) excellent peripheral vision.

But we could have added a Cuisinart Griddler to the list. Perfect for small kitchens (it's roughly 13" wide, 9" deep, and 7" high), this appliance not only makes terrific panini, but works perfectly for steak, fish, burgers (there are drip cups to collect grease), veggies, eggs, and toast. You can change from grill to griddle and you can open the top all the way to give you two grills. It heats quickly and evenly (there are temperature controls), everything's non-stick, and the parts are dishwasher safe. Most important, food tastes great from it. When it was first introduced, Cuisinart had it priced at $200, but it's generally available now for $129 — find it at Zabar's and most of the usual kitchenware suspects.

A slim profile, practical, good-looking, quick — it's everything a New Yorker could want.
We like the changes afoot at New York mag, including their newly introduced Strategist section. One feature, in which a small patch of the UWS is anatomized, however, has some highly dubious assertions and strange omissions:

Anyone who calls Delico the best gourmet deli in the area is just a nabe rube. Lenny's, which isn't even mentioned, is so popular that it's the closest thing to a neighborhood center, beloved for its sandwiches and snappy service. Skip Delico, head to Lenny's on Columbus between 74th and 75th. Also neglected is the best sushi, by far, for many blocks: Raku, 57 W. 76th [Col/CPW] 212.873.1220.

We're told to "forget Magnolia Bakery" for Crumbs Bake Shop on Amsterdam and 75th. Are you mad? Have you tasted anything from Crumbs?

As for On the Ave Hotel, slinging around expressions such "as good as any W — without the attitude" is simply misleading. We like the hotel just fine, though the last person we sent there complained that the room condition was getting a bit threadbare. It is not, in MUG's view, in the W class. The NY piece says rooms start at $375 for a double, which would be appalling, if true. A quick search of the site, though, shows you can get a room for $159.

Finally, this article says that the restaurant NorthWest has a cigar bar "permits pending." Perhaps, but that cigar bar has been there for years.

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