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Last Unhealthy Meal for a Long Time- Needs Ideas

Hi- A friend of mine who is a foodie needs to clean up his diet due to health reasons and in support, I will be going along for the ride with him as far as eating solely healthy food (we are talking no sugar, bread, dairy, gluten, etc). We wanted to do a sort of last meal before he has to embark on such a diet. Nothing extremely fancy (he tends to always lean towards a great sandwich, pizza and burgers and Ice cream). We have tried many of the best of all of these things, especially pizza, but we honestly haven't endeavored out on any foodie adventures since about August, so it's been a while. We would like to stick to Manhattan- any thoughts on what your sort of last meal would be? Can be a few places, but prefer casual (so, not a tasting menu someplace- not really about price, just prefer it to be a casual good time). Thoughts, suggestions? I know it's sort of a vague topic, but I think we are pretty open as long as it's not extremely exotic and sticks to the simple.

Thanks so much.

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  1. IMO the worst, yet most satisfying, health offenders are served at breakfast. All those wonderful things like maple syrup, endless dairy products, gluten-laden baked goods, cholesterol-packed eggs and pork items, and so on are so bad for you, yet so tasty. I would take your friend to the worst, best breakfast ever. Maybe brunch. Maybe a buffet brunch.

    Actually I find that the whole idea of going cold turkey, permanently, is just silly. In my opinion it's far better to just eat healthy 25 days out of the month and then just let yourself go for the rest. That way you're fine physically (unless you have some severe food allergy or intolerance) but you don't resent everything you put in your mouth. There's just no reason to avoid absolutely everything as long as you exercise a reasonable amount and eat healthy food most of the time.

    2 Replies
    1. re: travelmad478

      I agree with you on your idealogy of food. I tend to normally be extremely healthy and allow myself cheats, but as I said, this is for my friend who has to eat a certain way for health reasons that are rather serious and severe, so he doens't have the options of being able to cheat so often. It's about a whole life change.

      Also, i guess i should have clarified. It's not really about just being gluttonous- we want something that is just damn good. I don't need to eat until i throw up and I'm not a huge breakfast fan. Looking for perhaps a sandwich that is just amazing or a particular dish at a restaurant that may be under the radar. Thanks

      1. Here's my suggestion. I would make it at home. Seafood Fettucini Alfredo. And its easy and quick. Obviously you get the pasta. A jar of pre made alfredo sauce (or you can make your own). One dungeness crab (they are in season now and very reasonably priced). If you cannot get crab, then snow crab, shrimp, bay scallops or a whole combo of seafood is very tasty. If you like salmon.....BBQ salmon mixed in is great too. You just cook all the seafood you are going to use. Sometimes I deep fry the little bay scallops (they only take a minute or so) and shrimp. But I mix the crab meat into the alfredo sauce, reserving larger pieces to lay on top of the serving. Warm it up, toss it with the pasta, then gently mix in the rest of the seafood. If you fried anything put it on top. Add garlic bread and its so delicious, easy but definately NOT on anyone's health conscious diet.

        1. Some would call it my weakness, but my guilty pleasure is Fried Seafood and Fried Chicken. Some of the best sea foods I ever had were at the Korean fish markets with Hot food stands with in them. Very Cheap fish fillets......however, I would caution you that some of the other items may be over-breaded.

          How about the new Meatball Sub Shop or Katz's.

          5 Replies
          1. re: fourunder

            Wow, katz's has a new meatball sub shop? Meatball subs are perhaps my favorite sandwich. I have to look this up- i am out of the loop

              1. re: AdamD

                haha, o- i got excited by the idea of katz's somehow creating a meatball sub. It seemed unlikely, but imagine what that sandwich would look like.

                1. re: offthebeatenpath1

                  yeah, but Id only like it if they found a way to grind pastrami, corned beef and brisket in!!!!!

            1. I agree about the fried food-a true guilty pleasure. Same with donuts, hot dogs and cheesesteaks.
              Fried oysters at the oyster bar in grand central-with a bloody mary
              Then, the sea scallop pan roast with a crisp white wine
              After that pan roast you will not be craving dairy for a very long time.
              Then you can stop at juniors for cheesecake and coffee.

              1 Reply
              1. re: AdamD

                Lil Frankies in the LES. Their pizza is amazing and everything is made from scratch so it wouldn't be too over the top.

              2. Place that came to mind right away was Torrisi:

                Italian-American casual. You'll recognize everything on their menu - They just take the food to the next level (or three). Great/simple sandwich and sides for lunch, but I'd aim for the changing dinner menu.

                2 Replies
                1. re: ediblover

                  That's a great idea. I have been to Torrisi once during the day for a great chicken park, but have heard amazing things about dinner. I might just give that one a try. Thanks ediblover. Has anyone been for dinner? As good as it is supposed to be?

                  1. re: offthebeatenpath1

                    I had dinner at Torrisi last week. I normally don't like Italian, but if I can experience more Italian restos like Torrisi, I'd change my mind.

                    Torrisi is incrediblicious--from the first dish to the last dish. The night I went it offered a choice of fish or meat set for $50. I picked meat. It brought out a series of dishes--most of them were just 2-3 bites each, but everyone was well done and most were superbly good--even simple pasta dish. And I wished some of their cookies were sold separately because I want to buy a box home.

                    Torrisi was the best meal experience I had in my NYC trip--far better than Aquagrill and Balthazar. Highly recommended.

                    210 Spring St, New York, NY 10012

                    Torrisi Italian Specialties
                    250 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10012

                2. Pasta tasting menu at Babbo - yeah, it's a tasting menu, but the vibe is very casual.
                  Any ol' meal at Eleven Madison Park - it's fancy, sure, but at its heart it's comfort food.
                  Get a few more friends together and do the Bo Ssam at Momofuku Ssam Bar (or, just order a bunch of fatty porky-good items at the same)

                  Eleven Madison Park
                  11 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10010

                  110 Waverly Pl, New York, NY 10011

                  Momofuku Ssam Bar
                  207 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: sgordon

                    Momofuku Ssaam is a good idea; another option is to go to a gastropub. Good options include The Spotted Pig or the Breslin (if you are willing to brave the wait or go during a less-busy time!); you could do small plates/bar snacks if you wanted to go to a couple of places. In the Ace Hotel along with the Breslin is the No 7 Sub Shop, for a highly-regarded sandwich.

                    Spotted Pig
                    314 W 11th St, New York, NY 10014

                    The Breslin
                    20 W 29th St, New York, NY 10001

                  2. Ditch Dogs at Ditch Plains. imagine two hot dogs covered in mac and cheese, served on a bed of french fries.

                    Ditch Plains
                    29 Bedford St, New York, NY 10014

                    1. If you're going to go unhealthy for a last hurrah, I'd vote barbecue or go to a Cheesecake Factory and have a 3 course meal! But I'd vote BBQ before CCF. Like Hill Country or Virgils or Wildwood.

                      Hill Country
                      30 W 26th St, New York, NY 10010

                      Virgil's Real Barbecue
                      152 W 44th Street, New York, NY 10036

                      Wildwood Barbeque
                      225 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10003

                      1. I would do a walking food tour starting at Keste. Depending on how long the wait is I would go to Joe's and share a classic NY slice and go back. At Keste I would only order the Pizza Del Re, maybe someone else on the boards can comment on what else to order. Ive tried the margherita and salsiccia both were good but a lot worse than the Pizza Del Re. Afterwards, I would go to the bar at Minetta Tavern and order the bone marrow and fois gras terrine, combined they make the best sandwich I've had in my life. (You could also order the black label burger, but I don't think it's amazing), if you're still hungry I would walk east to Katz and split a pastrami reuben and if you're still hungry walk farther east to the bar at WD-50 for desserts. If that's too fancy you can go to new store il laboratorio gelato has near Katz. If you guys can eat a lot you can add the square slice at Artichoke to your trip before Katz.

                        Minetta Tavern
                        113 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012

                        1. I'd opt for the Fried Chicken at Momofuku Noodle Bar (both versions of the fried chicken are great!).

                          Momofuku Noodle Bar
                          171 1st Ave, New York, NY 10003

                          9 Replies
                          1. re: ellenost

                            I'd eat foie gras and pastrami and a big steak and pasta carbonara and good pizza and good red wine.

                            1. re: gutsofsteel

                              Sounds great to me (except I'd substitute a great Riesling instead of the red wine).

                              1. re: ellenost

                                Ellen I know you're a big riesling fan...have you sat at the bar at Hearth or at Terroir and explored their Reisling list....? Worthwhile.

                                413 E 12th St, New York, NY 10009

                                1. re: ellenost

                                  Riesling is incredibly versatile, but it's far less than ideal for most of the items on that list.

                                  1. re: hcbk0702

                                    Disagree. There are enough types of Riesling so that virtually any food work with some type of Riesling. They range from sweet to dry. I mean what's better than a late harvest sweet riesling and foie gras?

                                    1. re: gutsofsteel

                                      A good BA or TBA (or other Riesling with a similar residual sugar level) can be a great pairing with foie gras, depending on the preparation. For the rest of the items on your list, Riesling wouldn't be my first choice.

                                      But feel free to pair a bloody rare, dry-aged steak with a Riesling if you want to.

                                      1. re: hcbk0702

                                        Have done steak with a rich complex Riesling plenty of times, with great enjoyment. Chacun a son gout!

                                        1. re: gutsofsteel

                                          Thanks gutsofsteel! Since my sister (my drinking/dining buddy) can't drink red wine due to her migraines, we stick to white wine. We started off (about 10 years ago) with champagnes ('85 Salon was our favorite), but since the high end champagnes have reached outrageous prices (even for me), we learned to enjoy the German Rieslings (pincipally from the Mosel) instead. (Actually a few years ago when we were dining out with our mother, who doesn't like champagne or dry wines, was given a glass of a great Riesling at the old Aureole, my sister and I tasted it and loved it). We took a Riesling class with our old friend Aldo Sohm a few years ago (we knew him from Wallse), to try the Alsatian, Austrian and German Rieslings, and discovered that we prefer the German Rieslings. Every year we go to the German Wines USA Riesling wine tasting program to learn more about German Rieslings. I actually find that the Auslese Rieslings pair beautifully with everything. My favorite vintages are 2001 and 2005. Don't care for the older stuff (tastes too much like petrol).

                                          Definitely want to try Hearth and Terroir (always a fan of Marco Canora). I've seen their wine lists on-line, and they look great.

                                          BTW, I find BA and TBA too cloying for me. Although I do love a good Eiswein.

                                        2. re: hcbk0702

                                          I'll vote Vintage Port to go with everything on the list. Great with foie, certainly, and pairs marvelously with steak if you wanna go ultra-decadent. Probably wouldn't match the carbonara terribly well, but I could see it going with pastrami.

                                          A '77 Fonseca, maybe. Hey, if you're gonna go all out, you might as well go all out...

                              2. I would suggest a dim sum meal. Just choose off the carts, there is always something you hadn't tried before. If you'd like, it could go on for hours.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: marciamarciamarcia

                                  not to be mean or anything but when i think dim sum i dont think of an unhealthy meal. but i think the OP is looking for greasier foods.

                                2. Hi All- Thanks so much for your responses. We ended up at The Spotted Pig for one of their awesome Roquefort burgers and fries and then took a nice boat ride across to Brooklyn to the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory for Sundaes. Did the trick I think (as long as I don't think of all the below options and what i could have had). Thanks everyone.

                                  Spotted Pig
                                  314 W 11th St, New York, NY 10014