Wednesday, January 03, 2007

NYC images, part 2

A few more images from my trip to NYC...



Here's a dinner Dorota and I made at home. (I have to admit I was inspired by a similar dish Urban Vegan made a few weeks back that had looked so delicious and stuck in my mind) Lentils sauteed with some spices served with a mixture of caramelized pearl onions and mushrooms, with a side of simply dressed mesclun topped with toasted pine nuts and some Tofutti vegan cream cheese. We were not going off a cookbook or a recipe, but both loved how these simple ingredients came together and tasted. Now I crave this every day!

Every time I go to New York, I have to make a pilgrimage to my old neighborhood of Long Island City, Queens. This is the first subway stop out of Manhattan, so you get fantastic views of the New York skyline and the East River. It is also very close to these fun neighborhoods: Astoria (Queens), Greenpoint (Brooklyn), and Williamsburg (Brooklyn).



First, I had so say hello to the old apartment, on the fourth floor above the "Stop One Mack Deli."



Then, down the block on Vernon Blvd. to the Brasil Coffee Shop, which made a mean cup of coffee, where we picked up a bagel for...



...lunch on the East River. It was a beautiful, warm day, and well, the view was perfect. (There's the United Nations in the background!)



Here I am, contemplating all the new skyscrapers going up on the waterfront. Development and gentrification are a fact of life in most NYC neighborhoods, but there is something so bittersweet about seeing all the small shops, restaurants, and apartments going out of business or getting left behind as the neighborhood becomes, well, yuppiefied.



This picture shows the juxtaposition: a fancy French Bistro, Tournesol, next to a neighborhood bodega. An old brick apartment building near the giant luxury apartment building. (We used to call this the "mowhawk building" because of the way the orange top glowed in the night.)

Of course, I had to feel like I was doing some "serious work" on this trip, so I headed to Chelsea to check out some new art gallery shows. The funnest was a show by Chuck Close, a favorite photographer of mine.


Here are 2 self-portraits. (On the left, a photograph, on the right a tapestry)

For the last few years, he has been working in the medium of daguerreotypes (a 19th century precursor to film photography). He took daguerreotypes of himself and a group of friends, and then blew them up into giant photographs and tapestries. The medium of daguerreotype, with its long exposure time and overwhelming detail produces hauntingly frank portraits, and this show was exciting to behold.



Here are some of his portraits of the artist Lorna Simpson. Here is a link to the show catalog (which ends tomorrow, Jan. 4) for anyone who is interested.



My friend Tony and I went to dinner at Quantum Leap, a fantastic vegetarian/vegan restaurant (that also serves some fish dishes) with two locations in the East and West Village. I had this super indulgent dish: Chipotle "chicken" burger with "bacon" and "cheese"- oh my gosh, this really hit the spot! I made up for the naughtiness of the burger with going with a side salad and miso soup instead of the french fry option...



Here's a festive little marzipan Santa that Dorota bought at her neighborhood bakery in the Bronx. Unfortunately, he looked better than he tasted, the marzipan wasn't the best.


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17 comments:

Candi said...

Mm! That first dish looks great! I also love all the pics of the city. You look so beautiful in your photo!

Looks like a perfect day for visiting and eating lunch outside!

Thanks for the art show info and link! The photographs must have been amazing to see in person!

Awww, a cute, but not very tasty, Santa! :P Definitely cute though! Lol!

Vivacious Vegan said...

All of your pictures have me longing and dreaming. I desperately want to go to NYC. Marty wants to go see some glaciers this summer before they all break off and melt away but I'd really like to go to NYC (it seems so much more realistic now that we live a few miles closer).

Megan the Vegan said...

OMG - that marzipan is hillarious. Look at the detail!

springsandwells said...

I am a big marzipan fan... sorry the little guy wasn't so tasty.

Chuck Close has really hit on something with his work. I have been to three shows of his work in the last 10 years, and all three stand out as some of my favorite shows I've ever been to. His work is incredibly arresting and intimate in person... very personal and quiet and thought-provoking. I have seen some of his smaller daguerreotypes, but I haven't seen this work. It looks interesting. Thanks for sharing!

theONLYtania said...

I really wish I could get to NYC more often.. looks like so much fun! I've only been there twice. I like the self portrait!
I don't know why I know that name.. Chuck Close.. but I do. I like the little Santa haha.. all edible?

Midwest Vegan said...

I love the way marzipan looks but not the taste (I think it's an acquire taste).

Your lentil dish looks so good. I've only really eaten lentils in soup but your dish makes me think I should try other ways of using lentils.

Love the photos too. I've only been to NY a few times but part of the charm is all the family run businesses (tradition).

Nikki said...

I love the small places in NYC, they set it apart from every other large city around the world. I wanted to get to Quantum Leap, but my travels didn't allow that trip.

That meal you made looks professionally plated! I am jealous of your plating skills. Ah, who am I kidding, everyone plates better than me. I'm just waiting for someone to post a plating tutorial. :)

That marzipan Santa is cute! Too bad he wasn't so tasty.

Johanna3 said...

great photos, you are very pretty!

wheresmymind said...

That location for lunch is great!! Also a very fab picture of you :D

meesh said...

Looks like you had an amazing trip to NYC. I really miss the city. (sigh) File that one under "travel more" on my resolutions list. :)
Your meal at the beginning looks/sounds quite yummy. I got to try out some recepies on my family over the holidays and it went pretty well. I bet they would have liked what you made. Mmmm...

Village Mama said...

your post has me humming, to the tune of 'Jingle Bells' "oh what fun it is to ride on the coat tail of Bazu"!

Seriously dudette, this post rocks!! for so many reasons: I heart NYC like you would not believe (one of my best friends grew up in Astoria, so I'd pretty much visit every year - now she lives in Ireland); I could almost smell the warm beautiful day via the lunch by the river shot; you intimate shot of the Brasil coffee shop made me want to go there, NOW!; the oh-so super model contemplative shot of you; and well, who can resist a cute, albeit 'untasty' Santa ;-)

More pics of Astoria please.

Vivacious Vegan said...

Just coming back here to say that's a really great picture of you! You are very pretty. :)

Kati said...

Your post is making me want to go back to NYC! I never actually lived there, but J did when we were first together and I visited a lot. I never had the pleasure of eating on the river, though - that looks fun! Plus, I wasn't vegan back then, so I think I would have a new appreciation for all the veg restaurants there. Between this and your upstate NY photos, I'm getting homesick!

jenny said...

I love Chuck Close, your photos were great!

Urban Vegan said...

What a fab travelouue. Walking down memory lane is sometimes dangerous *SIGH* Change is the only constant. That portrait of you is stunning.

I also like Chuck Close. I saw him sipping around in his wheelchair at the Whitney Biennial a few years back. {I also saw Jeff Koons and his little boy. Koons was doing everything he could to look as conspicuous as possible. Ugh.]

Glad you liked the lentils & onion dish. I'll be making it again soon, too.

Brooke said...

Chuck Close has always been one of my very favorite artists! I majored in Art History wayyyyy back when, and I was obsessed with Photorealism. I still am! :-) His work is absolutely phenomenal.

Emmy said...

Really enjoyed reading about your NYC trip and seeing all the great pics (both city views and of course, the food!). Sounds like you had a blast on your trip :)