Archive for new york city

Eat Your Pets, NYC

Posted in Fast Food, MEAT POLITICS, STRANGE MEAT, STUFF ABOUT MEAT with tags , , on October 14, 2008 by chomposaurus


British street artist Banksy has set up what can only be described as a bizarre and enthralling storefront art project in Greenwich Village. The Village Pet Store and Charcoal Grill uses animatronics, found art and multimedia to question just about every assumption we make about animals: how we live with them, how we live with eating them and how they live like us.


Some people seem to think this is a vegetarian protest project , but of course it’s far more subtle than that. Even for people who adore meat, there is an internal contradiction when they spend a day doing nothing but playing catch with their dog. Most of us can live with this contradiction; but most of us are not confronted with it so strikingly. Your reactions may very when you see a hotdog where a hamster should be. Whatever Banksy means, you gotta go see his store. The exhibit runs through Oct 31.


(Photos by TJ and Gothamist)

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Sunday Protein: Sausage & Peppers with San Gennaro

Posted in Sausage, STUFF ABOUT MEAT with tags , , , on September 14, 2008 by chomposaurus

The Feast of San Gennaro, patron saint of Italy, continues through September 21st in NYC’s Little Italy. I snapped this photo yesterday of some brisket being roasted:

(If anyone knows the name of where you can buy one of these devices, I would be much obliged.)

But the true treat of Saint Januarius (and his holy/wholly decapitated head) are the sausage and peppers, delightfully sold at at least two stands per block. For a recipe of this deliciously portable feast, check out this site by a former festival vendor.

Gotham Chomp

Posted in STUFF ABOUT MEAT with tags on August 30, 2008 by chomposaurus


Chomposaurus is back, but in a different place! We spent the week moving from lovely collegiate Boston to the big meaty apple of New York City. So get ready for reviews of even crazier meats here in the eating capital of the USA.

Regular posts will begin again on Monday. Next week will include reviews of Trader Joe’s Turkey Jerky and some Antelope Steak.

And no, that’s not me in the picture. But it is someone who I’d like to high-five.

Best New York City Meat Blogs

Posted in REVIEWS, REVIEWS [Restaurants], STUFF ABOUT MEAT with tags , on June 5, 2008 by chomposaurus


Eating in New York City can be like trying to have sex with an extra-terrestrial on Mars: you’re in a strange place, and you just don’t know where to begin. And a search for “NYC Food Blog” won’t necessarily help, since the city is magnet for the type of gourmet hipsters that just love to write up whatever $80 meal they enjoyed before puking it up during some binge drinking and replacing it with 3 free hotdogs from Rudy’s. That’s why I’ve found the best places to read about cheap NYC eats.

The title of best NYC food blogger goes to NYCFoodGuy, whose incredibly detailed and helpful entries about diners, burger joints, taco trucks and everything else cheap and tasty in the city make for essential reading, whether you’re moving into your Williamsburg loft or sleeping on a friend’s couch in Morningside Heights for the weekend. Go to his site, and within five minutes you’ll have found lunch and dinner spots for the next three weeks.

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The $175 Hedge Fund Whopper (with fries!)

Posted in Burgers, Fast Food with tags , , on May 22, 2008 by chomposaurus


For those traders and fund managers looking for a way to spend their windfall oil profits, Wall Street Burger Shoppe now offers a $175 burger and fries platter. As per usual with these expensive burgers, the beef is all-kobe, and there is plenty of foie gras and truffle oil to go around. But what I want to talk about are the french fries. They appear, in the picture, to be wrapped in newspaper. NEWSPAPER? Sweet Enola Gay, at $175 that better be a vintage New York Times from the day the Titanic sank or I want my money back. Also, you’d think they could afford some high class ketchup.

Is Street Meat Safe?

Posted in Fast Food, MEAT POLITICS with tags , , , , on May 19, 2008 by chomposaurus


My friend, who we’ll call H. Cumberdale, recently moved to NYC to attend business school. Discussing the many culinary options available to him there, we inevitably hit upon street kebabs. “Is street meat safe?” he mused. I thought this was an excellent question; I have yet to find the answer.

The NYC Dept. of Health certainly claims to regulate street vendors, and they must go through an application and inspection process as rigorous as any restaurant in the city. However, whether these laws are currently enforced is up for grabs. A New York Times article from 1998 suggested that close to 80% of street vendors were undercooking their meat. It also suggested that the city’s inspectors were confused and overwhelmed when it came to investigating delinquent kebab karts and taco trucks. Now, 10 years later, are things any different? Recent stories have shown police more than willing to crack down on vendors breaking other laws, such as parking carts a few feet out of their proper space.

I contacted the makers of several vendor carts used in the city; none would respond to say whether their products included features designed to make sure meat was being cooked to the proper level. I’m also waiting to see if the Street Vendor Project has any information on vendors keeping up with health codes.
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Original Mediocrity (a.k.a. Sand in the Chili)

Posted in Fast Food, Hot Dogs with tags , , on April 22, 2008 by chomposaurus

Coney Island dawgs

This is a chili dog from the Original Nathan’s, a mammoth hot dog stand / beefy mecca at Coney Island, a beach at the very tip of Brooklyn. You see this place every year during the hot dog eating championship, with several crazies in the foreground dipping dogs into water and scarfing them down.

The question: Is it worth a trip here to eat one of the original Originals? The answer, no. While the vaguely industrialized beach amusement is a great atmosphere for eating, the fact is the hot dogs are no better than ones you buy in the package at the grocery store and heat up yourself. The chili was disappointing and the fries were nothing special. I recommend that you go down the shore to Brighton Beach instead, to one of the Russian supper clubs. There you can have an ungodly amount of meat while drinking more vodka and listening to more bad cover songs than you ever thought possible.