best NYC cab driver
Following is an item quoted in the Metropolitan Diary column of the NY Times, 7/10 edition:
"Chris and Hilary Wendel and friends recently took a taxi from the Upper West Side to Brooklyn. During the course of the journey, someone in the party mentioned that he was hungry. Before they knew what was happening, the Egyptian driver pulled over on Atlantic Avenue, got out of the cab and soon returned with mango drinks, baklava and other Mideast snacks. He refused payment, Mr. Wendel said, apparently happy to have his passengers experience Egyptian hospitality. Needless to say, the tip was generous."
He gets my vote.
I filled up with NY pride when I read that - that type of event (and much of what goes into the Diary - like the car ride to the hospital in the same edition)is what makes this city great - that we overcome the impersonality and isolation of our crammed, jammed in melting pot and still are a community. People who feed people are good people (and a breed of chowhound) and when they feed strangers they are saints! It killed me though that they didn't mention which place exactly he went for the food - but as it was a surprise to them I guess they weren't paying attention.
I'd like to think that he got the baklava at Damascus Bakery...Their pistachio baklava is so good that it induces a kind of trance state - whenever I give a taste to someone, their eyes kind of roll back, they go rigid, and they emit a sort of low, drawn-out groan. Seriously- Damascus has some powerful treats.