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Dec 15, 2006 01:32 PM

A Prolonged Goodbye (Leaving NYC in Six Weeks) and My Farewell Tour

So, w/ deeply conflicted feelings (glee and melancholy), i sold my loft in UnionSquare and i am moving to Asia: i'll be based in Chiang Mai, Thailand, but i'll be spending the next 3+ years traveling to pretty much every country in Asia, dining, drinking, and generally looking for trouble...

My one-way ticket is in February, so i'm hitting most of my fav NY spots before i go...while it'd make sense to skip Sripraphai and the selective Manhattan Thai joints where i've convinced them to cook me the real stuff that's not on the menu, i've actually been going to them quite a bit to practice my Thai language skills...and as far as some of the other Asian places, i know i'll be getting better Asian food in Asia but i have to hit them for old times sake...generally speaking, so far i've been rabidly going to:

-- Russ&Daughters (god, i'll miss that place)
-- Grand Central Oyster Bar
-- Ushi Wakamaru
-- Balthazar
-- Angels Share (more for drinks, but it's a special place for me)

and also will be hitting: Picholine, Keens, Lupa, Honmura An, Ferdinando's (RedHook), Cafe Sabarsky, NY Noodletown, the bar at Cafe Des Artistes, Cafe Mogador, n33, La Nacional, and Cafe Cafe (just for coffee and Soho people watching)...

i'd like to get some more great Italian food while i'm here: it's been a while since i've been to Da Umberto and Piccolo Angelo so might go there -- and maybe Malatesta where i've never been...any other suggestions on amazing NYC Italian most welcome: i've been to Babbo i really haven't been to a lot of the major older-school high-end Italian places...

And, any other suggestions on places that i've missed out on while i've been here: most welcome... ANY cuisine, particularly if it's something i'm unlikely to find in Asia...on my hit-list of restaurants i've never been: Florence (West African)...and maybe a Puerto Rican place?...

i've loved participating in this board over the last few advance and for past opining, thank you all: culinary compatriots, mock-enemies, fellow class clowns, acerbic sparring partners, and gentle strangers: for your suggestions, connoseurship, criticisms, vitriol, gusto, wit, passion, and verve...

Yours Truly, Simon

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  1. Good luck to you!
    If I were moving abroad, I'd try and get my fill of:
    Tapas at Tia Pol and/or Sala
    Lupa/Otto/Bar Jamon/Casa Mono
    Pizza, pizza, and more pizza (John's, Patsy's, Lombardi's, Grimaldi's, Di fara's)!
    Burgers at Corner Bistro
    Philly Cheese Steak at Carl's
    BBQ at Blue Smoke
    Desserts at Veneiro's, City Bakery, and Il Laboratori Del Gelato
    Hotdogs at Gray's Papaya

    On the higher end, I'd go to Gotham, Bouley, Craft, Peter Luger, and wrap it all up at The River Cafe for a picturesque farewell to our city.

    1 Reply
    1. re: ChowDiva

      i've never tried Tia Pol...i'll add it to the list...

    2. What? No Katz's pastrami on your list? Of course, you could do my (in)famous LES Food Excursion.

      1 Reply
      1. re: RGR

        i'll definitely do your excursion! (although once i go into Russ&Daughters, it's always difficult for me to resist simply going home and making a beast of myself gorging on smoked salmon)...truth be told, i don't eat beef so much so that's why Katz's wasn't on my list, but i suppose another pastrami there would be a fine thing...

      2. You definitely want to visit restaurants that are a rarity in Asia. With that said, ChowDiva has a good list going, and I agree, say goodbye to Katz's for goodness sakes!

        If I moved, I would certainly miss the coffeehouse experience that defines big-city lounging: Joe's, 9th St. Espresso, Sant Ambroeus, Via Quadronno, Zibetto for a great Italian experience.

        Village favorites: Hearth, Prune, Little Owl, Blue Ribbon Bakery all offer great food in nice city dives. And 'ino for paninis!

        Soul food: I've heard good things about Florence's, but never been. Try Charles' Southern Kitchen, Amy Ruth's, La Marmite for Senegalese.

        Pizza is a must: hit up Grimaldi's, Lombardi's, DiFara's for a final farewell.

        Bagels: I'm sure you've done it before, but do a final bagel-showdown, because nowhere is bagels more contested than right here - it will always be a NYC thing. Ess-A-Bagel, H&H Bagels, Murray's Bagels, Absolute Bagels.

        Pastries: Poseidon Bakery, Almondine, Rocco's, Veniero's, Payard, La Maison du Chocolat - and many of those cupcake places.

        Cap things off at Eleven Madison Park - you will have a sensational time, and it really defines fine New York City dining.

        Best of luck, Simon - and Happy Happy Eatings.

        1. All i have to say is you will be HOOKED UP on the food in chiang mai- thailand has some of the most incredible food i've ever eaten. you can obviously skip sripapai before you go, because you are in for such a treat. nothing in the west compares to the real cuisine in thailand- now i'd be hitting russ and daughters every day cause you won't see bagels and smoked fish for a long time... enjoy fb

          2 Replies
          1. re: frankbooth

            Here's a link to the Greater Asia board, which includes Brunei, Cambodia, East Timor, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. Don't be a stranger!


            1. re: Pat Hammond

              Thanks!...i'm sure i'll peek into the Manhattan board from time to time (although it may make me terribly homesick)...

          2. Before I leave the city for any kind of long-term trip, I try to get the following in:
            - bagels and lox at Ess-A-Bagel (though I really have to work on getting over to R&D)
            - concession special at Gray's Papaya
            - schwarma/falafel at Azuri Cafe
            - plain Junior's cheesecake
            - favorite burger and fries (not getting into that black hole of a debate as to which place is best, but this is especially important if you're going to a place largely devoid of burgers)
            - Korean BBQ, or anything from my favorite Koreatown spot (Woorijip)
            - some kind of bento box from Katagiri
            - plain frozen yogurt at Bloomingdale's 40 Carrots
            - a good cup of coffee...

            I'm sure I'm forgetting something, but I'll need to revisit this thread before I travel to Spain in a few weeks...