I am going to tell you about one of the days I enjoyed more in my visit to NYC a couple of years ago. I have been looking for a good American diner as I wanted to enjoy the experience like you see it in the movies. My choice was Katz Delicatessen, voted the Best Diner of New York and very famous for the scene in “When Harry met Sally” (the table where they sat is marked and, obviously, the most sought after….)
As we approach the place we see a long queue that even goes around the corner, but it moves quickly. Thank God! The place is packed. As you enter they give you a ticket where they note everything you eat or drink. When you leave you give the ticket back and then pay accordingly. Even if your ticket is empty you have to give it back otherwise you pay a fine of $50. The prices are not cheap, around $25 for a sandwich. There are different queues, one for the drinks, one for hot dogs, another for sandwiches, for soups…. The food is kosher. We order our sandwiches, salted beef and pastrami, which are the specialty, with rye bread, mustard, gherkins, and the lot. It is so full of bits and pieces and so big that you hardly see the bread. They are so amazing that you forget the price…. You get free drinking water too.
There also bagels and the classic, of smoked salmon and cream cheese ideal for non-meat eaters.
This place is a mecca, opened in 1888, every week it serves over 10,000 kg of beef. The walls are covered in photographs of all those famous people that have eaten there. Neon signs also decorate the place, very vintage!
For dinner, we changed style and went to Gato, in Lower East Side, Manhattan; the place is run by one of the most famous TV American chefs. This used to be a homeless shelter and the food is Mediterranean with American influence.
The menu catches my attention as I find many of the things I get at home (black squid rice, paella, Padron peppers…) but with the distinctive touch of Bobby Flay, the chef. Dishes such as scrambled eggs with romesco and goats cheese sauce; roasted cauliflower with Padron peppers…. I choose carpaccio of scallops with blood orange, followed by rabbit with pine nuts and carrot sauce (very appropriate as rabbit eats carrots!!!). it is so yummy!
When I do get surprised is when I get the wine list. Although there are French, Italian and California wines, the majority are Spanish, but not the obvious ones you find everywhere abroad, here they have a good stock of alternative wines, from Priorat, Alicante, and even Toro. I like the fact that they have wines so unknown many Spaniards…. We ordered Taleia, this is the Sauvignon of Castell D´Encus winery, which I love. At $85.00 the bottle, it better be good!
Happy and very satisfied we leave the restaurant quite late… we got carried away chatting and chatting, and are the last ones to leave the place…. How Spanish!!