Tuesday, January 15, 2013

"Only in New York..."

I think I shall call it Tartine-y (emphasis on the "tiny")
After reading about the Parisian cafe inspired, reasonably priced, BYOB West Village spot Tartine, it immediately went on my dining to do list. Enter Friday night when Dr. H and I walked 10 soggy minutes to find a line at Tartine's door (no reservations allowed). The hostess indicated that there was no room for us to come inside (hmmm) so we waited for another 10 minutes, hiding from the rain under their awning. Once summoned in, I pulled back the entry curtain to see that the place was PACKED. I mean tables composed like a Tetris game packed. 
What's missing in this pic is 10 more tables and like 100 people
We were then shown to a table so wedged into the corner that we literally had ass-to-face encounters with the neighboring tables as we climbed to our seats (I hope they liked my pleather jeggings!), shouted our order to the waiter (who was physically blocked from getting closer) and cracked open our wine. I looked around and realized why I hadn't noticed the crowd situation from outside - completely steamed up windows. Oh boy. As we finished our (delicious) appetizers (wild arugula salad for me, french onion soup for him) Dr. H was sent over the edge. His forehead glistened as he moaned "it's a sauna in here! Am I sweating? I'm so hot. Ohmygod". I struggled to keep a straight face as I said "it's not so bad, the food is really good!!" knowing in my heart that this was clearly a merry Meri miss. Even the simply prepared and extremely tasty main courses (full menu HERE) could not improve our disastrous accommodations. Wedged into a corner, sweating profusely and unavoidably eavesdropping on the table next to us, thank goodness Tartine is byob because booze is a necessity.
The sauces melt together and fries soak it up and YUM.
Bless my husband's heart for smiling through this meal (I ordered him ice cream for dessert specifically to cool him off, buying myself enough time to enjoy a berry tart and polish off our bottle). As we paid in cash (because you know they can't be bothered with credit card) and shimmied out the door towards fresh air, at least we were laughing. Because only in NYC will a couple wait in the rain to be squished into a bajillion degree restaurant (with 100% humidity) for a delicious (but was it really worth it?) meal.  

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