By - Kyle Dowling
In my mind it is without a doubt the finest section of this city. It’s hip, fashionable and not too over-the-top. Your basic jeans and t-shirt is fine for nearly all of the eateries. Well, most.
Welcome to Tribeca.
On this afternoon I sit in Locanda Verde—an energetic restaurant located on the corner of Greenwich and North Moore. Its feel is vibrant, exciting and most definitely intriguing. It seems whenever I pass this place all I can see through the large, elegant windows are crowds of smiling faces. Perhaps it’s the food, maybe even the establishment itself but something keeps their faces smiling. It should also be known that the restaurant sits as a part of the famous Greenwich Hotel—a boutique hotel owned by none other than Bobby D himself… Robert DeNiro.
A true New Yorker he is. The man loves Tribeca. Hell, I hear he even lives in this part of town, this neck of the woods. However, today the owner is nowhere in sight. But I assure you this; somebody is here. Somebody has ventured into the restaurant this afternoon to nourish in the wonder that is the food of Locanda Verde. The slew of paparazzi just outside the door, fifteen feet from my table, allow me to make this assumption.
Together they stand huddled with winter coats and hats as the snow slowly trickles down on their shivering skin. Surely whatever celebrity sits inside this place knows this, and I can only surmise that their attitude is a simple: “Fuck them.” Can you blame him? Yes, it’s a him.
Outside of these walls he is whoever the public perceives him to be. Yet in here?
No one cares.
No head spins.
A celebrity in New York City is the equivalent of watching a derelict pick through a garbage can on 5th avenue near Rockefeller Center… nobody notices, other than tourists.
Look away visitors.
Take in the sights, the surroundings!
There’s much more to look at than the beggar. Sure, it might be an odd and cruel analogy but still… it is the truth.
People sometimes go homeless. A tragedy is what that is. And people sometimes—often less—gain so much success that they hold the heavy title of ‘celebrity’ over their heads. Well, a tragedy is what that is as well.
But in New York, who cares? This is not Los Angeles; this is a city of intellects and hustlers… and of doers. That celebrity I see twenty feet from me? He moves, eats and laughs just like I do, just like you do.
Truthfully, he even urinates like the rest of us.
Trust me. He and I were urinal neighbors in the downstairs bathroom just a minute ago.
He seemed like a normal bathroom-attendee.
Yet while I and the other New Yorkers around might not care of his accomplishments or the fact that we all share a liking for fine dining, one thing is certain: he can play guitar, sing and scat much better than the rest of us.
Rudy Torres at Topo Gigio in Chicago's Old Town neighborhood has been working to roll out something festive and refreshing; his Flortini is made with two parts Pinnacle cake-flavored vodka and one part fresh pineapple juice, shaken together, poured into a Champagne flute that's then filled with Prosecco and garnished with a maraschino cherry to create an overall effect that's almost exactly like drinking a pineapple upside-down cake in a glass.
The phrase "cake-flavored vodka" is enough to make most cocktail aficionados blanch, but the ingredients balance out to create a flavor that's refreshing but not cloying, and unusual enough to satisfy most seekers of unique libations. The Flortini is sweet, to be sure, but the Prosecco gives the drink a bright fizz that lightens the impact of the cake-flavored vodka, and the blast of pineapple keeps the profile fresh instead of sticky.
"I feel like I should be drinking this by an outdoor hotel pool at night during some kind of fabulous party," one taster opined.
"This reminds me of a Bellini," another taster said. "But it's a lot lighter, so I could drink a lot more of them. That's definitely a good thing."
Check it out. Topo Gigio
an ocean of oversized knit caps and ironic mustaches.
The tiny, pedophile-like strips of hair on their upper lips.
Tell me, what purpose do they serve other than keeping women away?
Very rarely do I dare venture out of Manhattan; therefore it’s rather shocking to find myself in this
place… in Brooklyn.
The words nauseate me as I type, even worse so reading them back. If these people only knew
what was being typed on this page.
No, it is not some anti-establishment, indie rock novel.
No, it is not a book speaking out claiming that the nerd revolution has returned, making converse
“cool” and tight, dirty t-shirts “fashionable.”
It’s nothing they’d ever imagine, no matter how creative they think they are.
I had to take the G train to get here. Ask any true Manhattan-ite where the G train leads and
surely they’d response, “The what train? Leave me alone.”
A whole different world is what it is.
And even though I do not want to admit my current position tonight… I’m in Greenpoint,
Brooklyn, meeting a friend. Suffice to say, this was his choice.
The Habitat is where I sit, on Manhattan Avenue—of course, they needed some taste of the true
New York City in there. The café seems nice, a cozy spot for anyone willing to dive into the culture
of wannabee-hobo’s. The lights are dim.
The hipsters have sensitive eyes. Lighting hurts.
You poor cultural saps. I sympathize with you. Allow me to offer a kind-hearted roll of the eyes.
I can’t help but think I stick out tremendously; it appears that my straight fit jeans, boots and J.
Crew sweater make the guests uncomfortable, perhaps squeamish. Their mustache hairs blow rapidly
from the steam of confusion discharging out of their nostrils as a result of my outfit.
They just cannot understand why I would choose to not wear a size small t-shirt or black skinny
I see the table across from me holds three of them—surprisingly all male.
Call upon my relenting sarcasm.
All dark jeans, two black shirts, one white shirt (all tight) and two mustaches with the other one
having a sizable pair mutton chops. Tonight I find it hard to call my friend a true friend. Having
known me for ten years he should be well aware of the fact that I would not be welcome.
The trio of ironic facial hair all wince as I speak to the waitress, ordering too loudly for their ears.
It’s obvious they’d love to slowly whisper a “Hey man, relax dude. Quiet. My ears,” at me. Yet it
only makes me speak louder.
Oh, and here in walks my friend. It’s funny, his pants seem tighter than the last time I saw him.
His shirt seems wrinkled, and even from here I see prickles of hair sprouting from his lip.
They’ve begun to turn him.
What is this place?