I find that I work well within boundaries to a certain extend. When something becomes a chore, like something I have to make or do, it always ends up on the bottom. However, creating a list of fun activities or restaurants has always worked well. On the occasional free weekend when my husband and I have nothing to do, we usually do just that—nothing. We forget about the museum exhibits or parks we want to visit, the hikes or beach trips. Sometimes there seems to be too many options so we feel paralyzed and lazy and just do nothing.
A few weeks ago, I enjoyed a late night dinner with some out old college friends up for the weekend. The original plan was dinner at Buttermilk Channel, which I STILL embarrassingly enough have not been to. It was a group of 7, so a reservation a week in advance still left us with a 9:30pm seating. Sadly things changed. My friends who planned to stay in Brooklyn were bumped last-minute and moved to Manhattan, as if it was no big deal. Maybe I’m crazy but if you book a specific hotel in Brooklyn, you probably have a reason to do so. After work drinks moved to midtown, as did our dinner reservation. I had been to Craft and Colicchio & Sons before; both offered stunning meals. I had complete confidence in Tom Colicchio’s work so when I found a 10pm dinner reservation at Craftbar (thank you Open Table app!), I snagged it, knowing there would be something there for everyone.
I’ve made an executive decision here. And I can do that. Why? Well, because it’s my blog. I have decided to dub this seemingly ordinary week of May Brooklyn Locavore Restaurant Week. If you haven’t noticed, I write a fair bit of recipes here. I also love dining out. At restaurants that focus on farm to table and seasonal ingredients, of course. And I take a lot of pictures, like I do with most anything that involves food these days. What I’m not too good at is sharing. It’s not that I don’t want to rave about ever delicious morsel that enters my mouth, it’s more the fact that I don’t want to be like every other foodie that reviews restaurants. One of my biggest pet peeves is when people review restaurants and everything is the best. Best bloody mary I’ve ever had. Best pasta dish. Best, best, best. Well, what is it? Is this the best meal you ever had or is it one of those dozen other meals you claimed to be the best?
A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of dining at RoCCA, a quaint Italian restaurant in Glen Rock, NJ. After devouring my meal, practically licking the plate, I was sold that this was the new “it” restaurant. You can imagine my surprise when I later learned it has been around for almost 9 years. Why didn’t anyone tell me about this place before? We’re talking YEARS of missed meals that can never be recouped. Now I’m certainly not an authority on Northern NJ restaurants, but in all honestly (because that’s what you do on blogs…speak honestly to thousands of people you don’t even know) I haven’t been to many that wow me. I LOVE that so many are BYOB, giving us a change to select from our well stocked Brooklyn wine cellar, but often I find the food at these restaurants tend to be mediocre. Nothing creative or extraordinary, and certainly nothing to make a pilgrimage from Brooklyn for. There are a few standouts of course–The Saddle River Inn, Latour, and Esty Street. With both my AND my husband’s family living in NJ, you think I would have gone to RoCCA years ago, but no. I guess they like to save Jersey’s best for themselves.
Happy New Year! With 2012 behind us, a new year of adventures begins. I’m not a big New Year resolution person. Like most people I vow to lose weight or eat healthier, and it sticks for a bit. One of my favorite things about a new year is watching how crowded my gym becomes (can it really fit that many people?!) and then seeing how quickly it tapers off. By the end of January, at the latest, things are back to normal and my favorite machines are wait free.
Rather than creating a set of resolutions, how I’m going to “live better” in the new year, then beat myself up for breaking them all, I thought I’d take a different approach. It’s impossible to live perfectly all the time, to say you’re going to do something, and follow that regimen day in and day out. Instead, let’s set some goals as to what I want to achieve or try this year–food related of course.