Thank You Kate Spade

Katherine Noel Brosnahan, known professionally as Kate Spade and Kate Valentine.  American born, Kate was a mother, fashion designer, and successful entrepreneur.  June 5th, 2018, we lost a brilliant force in the fashion/accessory world and what a tremendous loss it is.

There is no need to discuss as to how or why this happened.  Instead, Kate should be remembered for her contribution to the realm of fabulous.  Spade started out with Mademoiselle magazine in the accessories department in 1986.  She later left the magazine in 1991 with the title of “Senior Fashion Editor/Head of Accessories”.

While working at the magazine she realized that the market was lacking stylish yet sensible handbags.  After the discovery, she decided to create her own line of chic practical handbags.  Spade developed 6 prototypes out of “Scotch” tape and paper.  Shopping her designs around, she found a manufacturer in East New York who was willing to produce her designs and more importantly, work with a startup.
Thank You Kate Spade You Me NYC

To finance the company Andy Spade withdrew from his 401(k) plan and also paid employees of the company with his own personal checks as well.  Kate was undecided about the name of the line.  Since she and Andy were not married at the time, “Kate Brosnahan” sounded like an unmarketable name to her.  Andy suggested “Kate Spade” which was a combination of his surname and her first name which they both agreed on.

As we all know “Kate Spade New York City” launched into a massive handbag line which extended to clothing, jewelry, shoes, stationery, eye-wear, baby items, fragrances, tabletop, bedding, an d gifts.  Later, Kate and her husband sold the line so she can concentrate on raising her daughter.

Although Spade and her husband are not affiliated with the brand for more than 10 years, the beloved brand lives on.   There are numerous “Kate Spade New York City” stores all over the country and the world with her first store opening up right in Soho New York City where her empire began and her legacy created.

Conclusion:

We will miss you Kate…..

Anthony Bourdain

Anthony Bourdain, host of the popular CNN series “Parts Unknown” left the world with a final and permanent sign-off June 8th 2018.  I absolutely loved his show and the fact that he brought us all a little closer to each other just by sharing a meal. Anthony really showed us how much we all have in common through all the culture, diversity and cuisines he brought to us no matter where his location.

Bourdain was larger-than-life, an amazing chef and a fantastic storyteller.  The news of his death shocked the world and according to CNN, the most common sentiment was “I feel like I’ve lost a friend”.  I personally felt connected to Anthony, through his extraordinary way with words, his gutsy on-scene locations, and his edgy character.
Bourdain You Me NYC

His article in “The New Yorker” back in 1999 spoke volumes and I can definitely relate to it.  The article titled “Don’t Eat Before Reading This” was about the secrets of working in a restaurant’s kitchen.  “In America, the professional kitchen is the last refuge of the misfit.  It’s a place for people with bad pasts to find a new family”, Bourdain wrote.  Don’t get me wrong I don’t have a bad past.  I worked in a few restaurants, starting in the kitchen as a dishwasher and moved through the stations.  I can definitely say that I have come across some shady characters.

Now I love food and the relationships it brings to the table.  Anthony’s work is incredible and plays a huge influence on my writing as well.  I am sure that I can speak for all of my readers and pretty much everyone else. Anthony is sharing a meal in some part unknown to all of us and telling some amazing story.

Conclusion:

We will miss you Anthony, your work will not be forgotten.

Ethiopian Gold Queen of Sheba NYC

Queen of Sheba, is an Ethiopian restaurant, that is a true treasure.  Right in the heart of “Hell’s Kitchen” New York City, is where you can find this gem.  As I walk through the door, the place is full.  Then again why wouldn’t it be, I am never disappointed when I come here.

Let’s get down to business.  I sat at a table and looked over the menu which I know inside and out.  However, Queen of Sheba will make a subtle change every once an a while.  Lentil “Sambousas” are my favorite appetizers.  Queen of Sheba cooked up these delicious dough packets to perfection.  This is an excellent way to start off a meal.

Next, for my main course, the “Doro Tibs” is what I ordered along with the “Taste of Sheba”.  The “Doro Tibs” is sliced chicken breast marinated in onions, olive oil, rosemary-jalapeno, with a touch of Chardonnay.  I am almost positive that there are some secret spices in the mix as well.  The “Taste of Sheba” is a sample platter that includes a mouthwatering taste of 8 items.  There are too many to list.  The sliced chicken breast was succulent.  The “Taste of Sheba” was delicious.  Adding a glass of delectable honey wine is the perfect compliment to this exquisite meal.

Aside form the good food, my readers know service is just as important as the meal to me.  Queen of Sheba’s service is impeccable and also very accommodating.  I normally don’t place too much emphasis on decor.  However Queen of Sheba’s setup takes you back to Ethiopia.  They arrange the seating, to heighten a sense of community, therefore making me feel like I am eating and enjoying with everyone in the restaurant.

In conclusion, if you are looking for a charming restaurant with a  neighborhood feel to it, then Queen of Sheba is the right choice.  Whether you are by yourself or with a group, Queen of Sheba will satisfy your palette for delicious food and enjoyable company.  Make sure you tell them Dave Jacobs sent you.

Queen of Sheba You Me NYC

Location:

650 10th Avenue
New York, NY 10036
Between 45th & 46th Streets

 

 

Post NYC

“Post” is a place I have never been to before and it is not on my normal breakfast circuit.  I received this tip from one of our readers so I made my way over there, to check it out.  Referrals are always welcome.

When I walked through the door, I observed an intimately set counter.  There is also a small counter at the window for that outside feel.  This is an establishment that takes great pride in presentation.  Each space has its’ own bottle of ice-water and a place setting welcoming to anyone.

Post NYC You Me NYC

Immediately, I was greeted by a server behind the counter and was told to have a seat anywhere.  I take my seat at the counter and peruse the menu.  Before I can make up my mind the recommendation was “Biscuits and Gravy”.  “Wonderful, with a cup of coffee” was my response.  That is the first time in a long time, I went with a suggestion from a new place.Post NYC You Me NYCMy meal arrived within a few minutes, a nice healthy portion topped with an egg.  My first bite to the last, each was better than the one before.  I have to admit, I killed that meal within minutes.  All I have to say is “delicious” along with the coffee.  The biscuits are homemade and so is the chicken sausage in the white gravy, the taste proves that.

When the server came back to check on me, he laughed at how fast I devoured my meal.  I started to converse with him and found out that they are relatively new.  They have been open for a little more than a year.  Now everyone knows I am all about breakfast and really don’t care for brunch.  “Post” has a brunch so for the brunch culture in this city of ours, come out and enjoy.

“Post” also does lunch, dinner and has a “chill” nightlife vibe according to the server.  I let him know I would be back for dinner and engage in some after diner activity.

Post NYC
42 Ave B
New York NY, 10009

 

Pizza, New York’s Slice VS. Chicago’s Deep Dish

If you are debating between Chicago deep dish or New York’s slice, there really is no debate about whose pizza is the best. New York wins hands down. I’m not just saying that because I am a native New Yorker. There is nothing like a “slice” from the pizzeria.

There is something so yummy and delicious about a slice of NY pizza. What is it exactly?  First, the best crust is thin, slightly charred on the bottom and a hint salty.  When you fold it, it almost cracks up the middle but it stays together.

Then its the melted mozzarella on top of the sweet marinara sauce. The best slices are hot, dripping with oil from the melted cheese and crisp on the bottom.New York Slice You Me NYCIt really is the best bite of goodness. I know Chicagoans think their deep dish is the best, but lets get real. Chicago style pizza is a casserole not a slice. I like Chicago deep dish. It has all of the same ingredients, however the experience is different.Chicago Deep Dish You Me NYCA slice, served on a paper plate, on top of a piece of tissue paper for blotting or holding, with a can of soda and a straw, good cheap, fast eats. You can eat a NY slice on the go. You can’t eat deep dish on the go, you need a knife and fork. The crust is bready and chewy and you can’t hold it or fold it.

We can debate who in the 5 boroughs has the best slice, but we can all agree that a slice is a slice and there is nothing like a NY slice.

Summer Rental

So here I am, in an overrated and overpriced coffee house, having a conversation with a lovely lady which I can’t avoid, about how her husband rents her the same house, each summer in the Hamptons.  I also get to hear how it’s just for her and her girlfriends only, no husbands(lucky husbands).

I asked her if it is rented for the whole summer and she replied “Absolutely, I can’t just go for a few days”.  She then looked at me, as the typical “Entitled Ones” usually do, as if I am a peasant walking by her manor.  I don’t know what could’ve come over me to ask such a question.

I asked her another question as we’re patiently waiting for our 6 dollar cups of coffee.  I asked, how often she goes to Long Island for the summer and her response was “Oh, I don’t go to Long Island at all, I only go to the Hamptons”.  I furrowed my brow and walked over to the pickup area as my name was called for the small fortune I spent on a mediocre cup of “Joe”.  Really!!?

The Black and White

There are things that native New Yorkers know that transplants don’t like what “regular” coffee means, or what a “smear” is or a “black and white”. These are just some of the best things about New York.

I remember the first time I had a black and white cookie. It was first grade, 1977. Theresa Catina carried one in her lunch box every day. One day, she shared hers with me, splitting it against the grain, so that I had an even bit of black and white.

I was so excited I never had one before. That first bite was magic, I was hooked. Let me explain for those who are not native New Yorkers. A black and white is more than a cookie, its really more of a cake. The base is a yellow cookie/cake with a hint of lemon essence. Half the cookie is frosted with a white glaze the other half is frosted with a chocolate glaze. There is nothing else like it. Each bite is soft and chewy with a delicious sweetness.Black and White Cookie You Me NYCEveryone I know has a different way of eating a black and white. I am a chocoholic, I eat the white side first and save the yummy chocolateness for last, always the best for last. Some people prefer the white side, so they eat the black side first. Others just go for it and dig in. It’s The perfect cookie for sharing as they are the size of a desert plate. They are a NYC staple.

Next time you walk by a NYC bakery, not a cupcake place, pick one up and share it with someone you love or savor every bite for your self. They are worth the calories.

Mike’s Coffee and Deli for Breakfast

Mike's Coffee and Deli You Me NYCTucked away on 32nd street, midtown Manhattan, there is a tiny storefront serving some of the best breakfast in New York City.  I am talking about Mike’s Coffee and Deli.  There is nowhere to sit and nowhere to stand so if you are looking to go and take a load off, don’t bother going to Mike’s.  There is usually a line around the corner, packed with people that are looking to get their breakfast and go.  Don’t worry though, if you see a long line, it moves fast.  You will be at the front within minutes, paying for and receiving your food not too long after.

Mike’s is a breakfast spot for the fast paced. People waiting on line know what they want and know that they don’t have to wait long for it.  The employees, know your own order better than you do.  Every once an a while, an order could change up and then one might have to wait a few extra seconds.  One patron was talking about how all she has to do, is make eye-contact with one of the counter people, nod and they will have her order waiting for her when she gets to the front of the line.

Affordability and quality, Mike’s nails that on the head.  Probably one of the best bacon, egg, and cheese sandwiches in the city, along with a good strong cup of coffee to get you out of your morning fog.  If you are ever in midtown and crushed for time, Mike’s Coffee and Deli is the spot to satisfy your morning feeding routine.  Even if you are not in a rush you can save time by stopping at Mike’s, think about what you can do with a few extra “New York Minutes” in the morning.  Stop by and enjoy, tell them Dave Jacobs sent you over.

 

Mike’s is located at:
44 East 32nd Street
New York, NY 10016

 

A Coffee Shop Institution

An institution of all coffee shops in NYC, the “Lower East Side Coffee Shop” says it all.  I love this shop, and pretty much all “Original” and “True” New Yorkers love this place or at least know of it.  What I love the most aside from the price, is that it is completely unchanged and in keeping with the “Coffee Shop” tradition.

When you walk into this java hub, you are taken back to a vintage era.  An age of leather booths for four and tables for two.  The aroma of freshly brewed coffee and breakfast foods, that get your taste-buds going, fills the air.  The staff is professional and seasoned and probably have been at this coffee emporium since its establishment.

Lower East Side Coffee Shop You Me NYC

My favorite time to visit is early morning.  There is nothing better than listening to “WBGO DJ” Gary Walker spinning timeless Jazz classics over a hot cup of coffee.  That first sip of coffee with the anticipation of my favorite breakfast is what I like to call “Great Expectations” as the early morning stress melts away.  Every once and while, you can relive your youth, watching a young guy make an ass out of himself to impress his date after a night out on the town.

What makes early morning special, is you get to see both sides of the city.  The night time crowd retiring and the early risers beginning their day.  Either way this place removes the weight of the world off of you, for however long it takes to down a cup of coffee or a bowl of oatmeal.

The “Lower East Side Coffee Shop” is open 24 hours a day and believe me, I have been there all  hours of the day and evening.  From a night of hard partying with friends to actually meeting first dates.  The “Lower East Side Coffee Shop” is truly a great spot to start your day or end your evening.  It is a staple in the realm of the “Coffee Institution”.

 

 

 

High-Rises to High-Fashion

Exceptional physical condition, extreme weather tolerance and the ability to lift a significant amount of weight, is just the tip of the iceberg, regarding what it takes to be an Ornamental Iron Worker.  Now, couple that with beauty, grace, elegance and high-fashion, the end result is “True New Yorker” Porcha Gordon.

Originally from Houston, Texas, currently living in the Bronx, Porcha is an Ornamental Ironworker going on eight years, with an additional career in the industry of high-fashion modeling as well.  According to Porcha, the uniqueness of her profession and the impeccable views, are what she loves the most about being an Ornamental Ironworker.  What she loves the most about being a model, is being able to dress up and showcase beautiful designs.

One of the challenges of this dual career, was the constant transformation from Ornamental Ironworker to model.  Gordon remembers when she first started to model, she was not graceful at all.  Her walk made people cringe.  She had to learn how to walk all over again.  Balancing both professions takes a lot of physical energy out of her, especially, when a show runs late and she gets very little sleep for work the next day.  Additionally, she tends to get nicks, cuts and bruises, which can be impose an issue in front of the camera.

Porcha Gordon You Me NYC

When asked if she faced any animosity in such a male dominated industry, Porcha replied, “Not really but occasionally, I get a guy who thinks that he can bully me because I’m a girl”.  According to Porcha, due to her size and her looks, she would get a few interesting stares when seen in her hard-hat and construction gear when she first started. Now, those stares have turned in to admiration and people being impressed.

One of her most interesting experiences in her daytime profession, was working on the new Tappan Zee Bridge and in the world of modeling, discovering a whole new universe and being a part of it, which is the opportunity of a lifetime.  However,  where there is interesting there is also embarrassment.  Porcha recalls, a time when she was working over someone not realizing there was a can of “Redbull” in her back pocket.  Somehow she crushed the can and it got all over her and her construction pants.  She had to continue the rest of the day working in her leggings.  Another awkward moment for Porcha was when she was modeling.  She was wearing patterned “granny panties” which happened to faintly show through her outfit.

Porcha’s busy schedule between careers does actually allow for some downtime.  During the few moments she does have for herself, Porcha cherishes the time she spends with her friends, as well as playing in all things makeup.  She also likes to participate in beauty classes and catch up on sleep, which according to Gordon, sleep is boring but it’s the best thing ever.

Once finished with her journey of self discovery, Porcha eventually wants to travel the world with her best friend.  For now she will continue to maintain two careers and continue the path she has been following which makes her great grandmother proud.  Although her great grandmother is no longer with us, she is still Porcha’s greatest influence in life.