This is for a new show on the Food Network and I suddenly need one more in the NYC area.
I'm looking for food feuds in NYC or within a 2 hours drive of the city. An item of food (say pierogi) where there are two restaurants that make an item and lots of strong opinions about who does it best. Let me know if you have any suggestions. Can't do hot dogs, lobster rolls, pizza, deli or cupcakes.....thanks so much for any suggestions.
Kyochon vs Bon Chon chicken! (or some Korean fried chicken match-up).
Ess a Bagel vs Murray's (or...a bagel match up!)
319 5th Ave, New York, NY 10016
As Sam1 and any other Brooklyn boy knows: Brennan and Carr is famous for it's Roast Beef Sammich triple dipped, sloppy with sauteed onions!
Roll N Roaster is famous for being the first to have cheese fries!!
On a hot Summer night (sorry Meatloaf) we'd pick up sammiches at Brennan & Carr, drive over to Roll and Roaster for some cheese fries then to Plum Beach to watch the submarine races.
First > Sam, wrong about what? I said if you squint... they are both served on round buns, visual similarity; that's what I was commenting on. And, Sam & Moto, as one who's had more then his share of each, regarding who should win the "battle", which I wasn't going to comment on, I simply thought it would be an interesting competition, Rn'Rs roast beef, the quality of the beef, although admittedly it has diminished somewhat in the past decade(s). I've been patronizing RnR and B&C when "forced" by some from the "other" camp for 30 + years, is so far superior it needs no explanation. But I will as you seem so sure of your opinion.
B&C's beef is, although as you say sloppy with juice, as I say > slices of gray, often grizzled tasteless meat, I can't even refer to it as beef as the meat itself is tasteless. No hint of beefiness. The broth, which I do like, although much of the flavor of the broth / juice comes from what I perceive to be copious amounts of added salt, is responsible for 100% of the flavor of the sandwich. OK 90%.
The bun, which is an important, actually essential element to the sandwich, any sandwich for that matter, is of the most inferior quality, with no taste or structure at all. It simply disintegrates destroying any pleasure that might be derived from the sandwich. RnR's rolls are baked fresh; crusty on the exterior and soft, although retaining air-pocketed toothsome texture on the interior. They are ideal for absorbing and retaining a proper amount of their broth when dipped by the RnR counter girls. Nice kids all by the way.
In a side by side comparison of the broth, keeping in mind, I did say, and I do like B&Cs broth. RnR's is richer and has a more beefy base flavor. I know as fact from buddy Lamonica, RnR's sole founder and owner that the gravy / broth / juice, whatever are pure unadulterated drippings from the roasted beef.
RnR's beef is sliced much thiner (relatively) then B&C's adding to its being more tender.
I also prefer RnR's onions, again more flavorful, more cooked down onion essence. Almost a roasted onion compote.
So as any Brooklyn boy knows > drippy, goopy gray meat on a white bread bun that takes great effort to make it intact to ones mouth vs. a pink mound of beef on a crusty toothsome fresh baked roll which absorbs the rich beefy broth... Hum!
Some other opinions, observations and fact regarding our topic:
The / my suggested way to get an RnR sandwich is: rare beef with onions and cheese.
B&C wasn't begged, lets just say, wasn't asked to open a location in New York New York, Vegas < that really doesn't mean anything, I'm just sayin'.
Not relating specifically to B&Cs sandwich > their Roast Beef Plate is astounding to me. Particularly the canned string beans and awful fries.
Speaking of fries > you're welcome Moto. I was the first person, to have cheese put on an order of fries at RnRs. 2 weeks later, it was on the menu. If i only had a nickel... < that also means nothing; I just never think about that. Way ancient history "Cheez On Anything You Please". I guess you might say it's my claim to fame! The detailed story; kind of interesting, can be related upon request.
Further off topic irrelevance > try a 1/3 pound of blood rare Eagle Provisions (5th Ave.) roast beef on a Royal Crown Brick Oven Hero (lightly toasted) with roasted garlic, cubes of carmalized blackened sweet onions and Graften Cheader and yes, B&Cs beef broth (not too much) and then squint in satisfaction. Or hit-up Defone's for a roast beef and hot pepper hero.
ALL the above is nothing more then my opinion of course.
And finally, I apologize for the above rant and reaction. It's not "usually" my style, nor do I have the time or inclination to go on and on and on > although, I have been reminded more then once that, "brevity is wit". I'm not sure what set me off as I was, as evidenced by... maybe Sam's assertion that I was "completely" wrong. I am often wrong, but not often completely wrong, coupled with the fact that 2 weeks ago a guy came zooming out of B&Cs parking lot, and without looking (his admission) smashed into me. Maybe, that with my sincere belief in the superiority of RnRs sandwich over B&Cs.
Anyway, that's my opinion and I'm...
...I guess this is Brooklyn boys coming to blows 2010 style.
allenbank, you must be as old as I. I was saying that there is no basis for a fued since both places are famous for different things. The "feud" you proposed would be like comparing Dairy Doll to Buddies. Are you old enough to remember Dairy Doll and Buddies? Apples and oranges.
I stand by my affection for Brennan and Carr roast beef sammiches. They are in a league of their own. Totally different than a sammich you might get at a deli. Once again bananas and cherries.
Moto, yes I agree with you. I was thinking about Roast Beef Sandwiches in the general, larger sense. They are indeed different animals. Yes, I must be as young as you and although I don't remember Dairy Doll, I do have fond memories of Buddies. At the time, it seemed to me, Disneyland had nothing on Buddies.
And do you remember Nathan's Back Room? If you're interested, some time ago when I was a regular poster at CH, I wrote a lengthy piece about a number of places in the area when time rolled by at a slower pace, when "we" were young(er). If you'd care to search it > I believe the title of the thread was END OF THE CENTURY. It included a bit about Nathan's Back Room.
Another "joint" you might remember, which I still hold in great affection was the late lamented Bluebird Diner on Utica Ave. Near Ices Queen. I wrote in detail, about The Bluebird, which before being the Bluebird was the Paris Diner in another post from long ago called, I believe FAVORITE DINERS.
Now that would have been some setting for a reality TV show!
Both these posts, if you care to, and can't be found by searching their titles, can I believe, be found by searching my name with a space between allen & bank. It later was morphed into allenbank.
Also, and finally, of possible interest; for the nickel, along with all the pleasure and cholesterol I imparted on you with French Fries with Cheese, I'll send you an original Lundy's lobster bib. When the Late Lamented Lundy's was being demolished I rummaged through the debris one summer evening and found a box of the original tufted lobster bibs. I had intended to mount them in frames with a photograph of Lundy's in its hay-day which I'd gotten from the Brooklyn Historical Society and market them in Boca, Miami and West Palm Beach. They're in my closet!
And truly finally, in full disclosure, about 6 years ago, 1 evening I had returned from Paris craving a Roast Beef Sandwich (and an order of "French!" with cheese) and knowing I would be close to RnR on my way from JFK, we pulled off The Belt at Knapp St. and headed to RnR. While on line, I heard someone, who it turned out was a "member of the gang" a childhood pal telling his wife about the day I hum, "invented" french fries with cheese and she scolded him with what she stated to him as unquestionable truth. "I'd been eating French Fries with Cheese at Bun n Burger long before Roll and Roaster had them".
I choose to believe she was hallucinating as I greeted my long lost friend and we didn't speak of it. She might have been right!
Dairy Doll was across Flatbush Av and up a couple of bolocks from Buddies.
Nathan's Back Room was my go to place to impress the Manhattan girlfriends who always said, "there's no dining room at Nathan's" "Wanna bet?" and I always won the bet. I remember there was a waiter who was a double for John Garfield. Good memories.
Lundy's!!!!!!! What a shame? The best dinner biscuits ever! Jackson was our favorite waiter for the Shore dinner.
I remember the Paris when it was still the Paris.
Before Brooklyn had McD's and Burger King we had Wetsons and Quick Burger where I worked for a couple of years. More fond memories.
Favorite diner, The Foursome on Ave U.
The Back Room
102 Norfolk St, New York, NY 10002
401 5th Ave, New York, NY 10016
Not sure how to do it, but maybe Economy Candy v. Dylan's Candy Bar?
Cannoli: Veniero v. Rocco v. new place that serves only cannoli
Meatballs: Locanda Verde v. Meatball Shop
342 E 11th St, New York, NY 10003
108 Rivington St, New York, NY 10002
Dylan's Candy Bar
1011 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10021
377 Greenwich St, New York, NY 10013
agree with the street meat.
Bagel: some combination of H&H, Murrays and Ess-a-bagel
For steaks, I'd go Peter Luger vs. Keens
Lasagna - Via Emilia vs. Le Zie
Pickles - Pickle Guys vs. Guss (i think you can still get them out in Brooklyn)
Dumplings - Prosperity vs. Vanessas
49 Essex St, New York, NY 10002
172 7th Ave, New York, NY 10011
47 E 21st St, New York, NY 10010
I'll second the Pickle Guys vs. Guss - although they might not agree to be on the same show together. I hear there's bad blood between them.
Bleecker St. Ice Cream Showdown! GROM (newcomers, turf invaders) vs. CONES (the classic)
Vanessa's Dumplings vs. Prosperity Dumpling (or Fried Dumpling)
Fried Chicken, Uptown: Charles' / Rack & Soul vs. Amy Ruth's
Fried Chicken, Downtown: Redhead vs. Back Forty vs. Georgia's Eastside
Fried Chicken, Brooklyn: Henry's End vs. Buttermilk Channel
Cubanos: Cibao (classic) vs. Spotted Pig (fancified)
And sure, Pierogi: Veselka vs. Odessa
French Fries (okay, "frites") : Les Halles vs. Balthazar
Avocado Fries: El Almacen vs. Toloache
Bánh Mì: Paris Sandwich vs. Bánh Mì Saigon Bakery
(Not that aren't other good Banh Mi in town - and any mention of them incites a riot of responses insisting that so-and-so's is the best or "most authentic" or whatever... you could easily have half a dozen places go against each other. But those two are a block apart, so they'd be good for a show...)
NYC BBQ: Daisy May vs. Dinosaur vs. RUB vs. Hill Country
Mac-n-Cheese: S'Mac vs. Macbar
272 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014
Vanessa's Dumpling House
118 Eldridge St, New York, NY 10002
Rack & Soul
258 West 109th St., New York, NY 10025
314 W 11th St, New York, NY 10014
251 West 50th Street, New York, NY 10019
113 Mott St, New York, NY 10013
144 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003
119 Avenue A, New York, NY 10009
411 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10016
46 Eldridge St, New York, NY 10002
233 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014
72 Clinton St, New York, NY 10002
349 E 14th St, New York, NY 10003
Personally less impassioned and more esoteric maybe too much so for the Food Network, then my earlier suggestion > A Sicilian Panelle Sandwich faceoff.
Ferdinando's Focacceria vs. Joe's of Ave. U.
Sad but true > when last I served on jury duty this debate was as fervent as the case at hand. Even the judge weighed in.