To continue with the Linkfest writeup. With SCMSing around beckoning the Cinetrix, the Cod enlisted former neighbor, longtime friend, and sometime commenter Cookie to scrub in for phase two of Linkfest. But first, The cinetrix and I began the day with the eggs Benedict poboy at Stanley*. Before considering the business at hand, a word or two on Stanley**:
1: Serving a solid breakfast at a quasi-reasonable price smack dab in the middle of the Quarter puts you on the Nobel Peace Prize shortlist.
2: Considering the venue (French Quarter) and the clientele (hungover tourists, the cinetrix and I were gobsmacked by the cheery and efficient service.
3: The eggs Benedict po-boy is ridiculous. It is delicious, but the method of eating a po-boy and poached eggs + hollandaise puts it squarely in the delicious but untenable neighborhood. It's as if the man from Mars, in the process of eating Cadillacs, Subarus, Mercuries, and Lincolns too, had eaten a car with an airbag full of eggy goodness. Eating it goes like this. i) Bite in, cover hand and arm with yolk and hollandaise. ii) Lick hollandaise off self, dipping bread/ham in what landed on the plate. A perfect breakfast, in other words.
*The cinetrix went with eggs Stanley, which ups the Benedict ante with fried oysters.
Hey there EDSBS shoppers. The NOLA coronary assault continues over hrr.
In an effort to break my bad habit of having great meals and not writing about them oh, hey @huskrestaurant, Geechee Girl Cafe, etc. here is part 1 of the Cod's valliant effort to hit 3 Donald Link restaurants inside of 24 hours (there was an AM Eggs Benedict poboy at Stanley, but that was medicinal. (Stanley was very solid, but it's as if they saw things people never say about restaurant websites, and misread it as restaurant website best practices.)
Long story short, while the Cod consulted his WWBBED bracelet. Trixie danced her way through the menu like Sugar Ray in Montreal in 1976. I was not at all mad at the fried rabbit livers on toast I had for an appetizer. The words above the fold are "rabbit," "liver," and "pepper jelly," but the real story was the onion and mint dressing adorning, like an exalted version of the vegetables on a banh mi. For the main, I got the cochon, which I'd had before. At home, I am in the middle of @davidchang's pig's head torchon receipt (torchons made, and in the freezer, waiting, like a red white and blue liberation jumpsuit, for just the proper occasion), so I am interested in pucks of pork. It was still good -- maybe seasoned more aggressively this time around, but very solld.
However, I repeatedly found myself sneaking food from the cinetrix, who was kind enough to share. The arugula and pigear salad made me wish we had a pigear patch next to the arugula patch in the back yard. (See below, for pic ganked from Cochon menu.) The yard egg was the kind of disingenuous thing a billion spots in Brooklyn, etc don't do as well as this -- perfectly poached egg on a grit cake with mushrooms. I ate as much of it as I dared. This guy remembered to take pictures -- see right.
The cabbage salad w/ housemade slim jims was also rad, and would have been best in show at about 99% of the meals I've had in the last year. As always, the menu challenges the boundaries of appetite. The menu fosters regret for roads not taken -- it's criminal not to get the bacon and oyster sandwich, but there was no place to put it. The room was subdued, but considering it was at the end of service, and two days after Mardi Gras, the servers were engaged and energetic. Some fancy rye for dessert wrapped up a meal that made a long drive seem like a good choice.
The Cod enjoys food. The Cod enjoys New Orleans, and is on the record as being fond of such Donald Link jawns as Cochon, Cochon Butcher, and Herbsaint. With boon companion cinetrix booked to NOLA to drop science at SCMS, the Cod formed a plan audacious in its radical simplicity -- a series of meal at casual Link (Cochon), lunch Link (Cochon Butcher), winding up at fancy Link (Herbsaint). (I hasten to add Stephen Stryjewski is at the helm at Cochon, and co-owns with Link. I will be gathering shorter updates at the twitter, under the #linkfest hashtag.
Based on a late afternoon arrival and a late night walk, Charleston comes off like New Orleans and Philadelphia had a baby. And speaking of New Orleans, the best thing written about New Orleans comes from Herr Swindle at EDSBS drops a soliloquy from an alcoholic NOLA police horse that is noirer than reading The Killer Inside Me blindfolded during the winter solstice. If you do not read it immediately, you have only yourself to blame for not reading the best thing I've read about New Orleans in years.
The Cod is on the record as a vertebrate who <3 NOLA. I have not really had the headspace to process the ginormousness of the calamity, or that BP manages to layer one more fuckup after another like it's a shit sandwich wrapped in phyllo dough the've dropped on the Gulf. But fearless NOLA correspondent Cookie checks in with a small thing, but comprehensible in a way that makes the awfulness comprehensible:
I understand that the nature of corporate franchising means this would be a question of not getting the right guy, but I want to buy a case of 10W-40, and dump a quart of it on the floor of every BP I pass on the upcoming haj north.
But the worry is premature. Cassamento's, Frankie & Johnnie's, Domilice's, Bayona, et cetera, et cetera? Very possibly fucked six ways to Sunday. But fear not! You can get your um, seafood on at Red Lobster:
Sifton continues his tour of the canteens of the power elite by looking in at JGV's new hotel spot. At this rate, next week's story will be a sitdown with Henry Kissinger's private chef as he shows how he confits albino infants in a unicorn tusk-fired oven makes crab cakes just like the ones at Le Cirque. The Mark sounds like a Perkins, only really really fancy:
Put Sifton on a plane to New Orleans, and he can find food that is cheap and interesting. (Two big surprises here -- 1) He gets after the Vietnamese options in NOLA more thoroughly than I've seen anyone do in a national publication, and 2) He really digs Emeril's flagship spot, in 2010 which seems as unlikely as actually enjoying a reunion show by punk heroes of long ago. [That did happen to me, once, when I saw the Buzzcocks in 1989.]) But I digress, and shirk my self-appointed task. In lieu of cheap and interesting food, (admittedly, not the purview of the NYT restaurant critic), the attention here to expensive and boring food is puzzling. At least, Creepy Sifton pops up: