Posts Tagged ‘New York City Dining’

Cooking With Jazz (Limerick Review)

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

For many years, Cooking With Jazz in Whitestone, Queens, New York was one of our favorite restaurants. Then, suddenly, it was gone.

Several years went by, and hubby Mark and I had just about given up on ever getting good New Orleans food again, short of flying to Louisiana. And then, the unimaginable happened — a postcard arrived announcing that Cooking With Jazz had reopened, this time in Jamaica Estates, Queens.

Oh joy!

Within days we were dining at the new Cooking With Jazz, and it’s even better than we remembered.

And so, a limerick in honor of chef-owner Steve and the wonderful Cooking With Jazz restaurant:

Cooking With Jazz (Limerick Review)
By Madeleine Begun Kane

There’s a Cajun oasis in Queens
With authentic cuisine, New Orleans,
And the Creole pizzazz
At Cooking With Jazz
Surely rivals all Big Easy scenes.

Two Nights of Big Apple Fun

Friday, December 25th, 2009

If you’ve ever fantasized about a career in the theater, you owe it to yourself to see playwright Theresa Rebeck’s The Understudy on Broadway. Actually, anybody who needs or wants a good laugh should see it. Hubby Mark and I caught it Wednesday night and loved its uproarious depiction of the theater world’s underbelly.

This Roundabout Theatre production is playing through January 17, 2010 at the Laura Pels Theatre. (It’s a limited engagement because the theater is booked after that date, and rumor has it that its great Broadway cast may be taking it on the road.)

Speaking of the cast, Justin Kirk (of Weeds fame) plays the title role. And while I really like him in Weeds, I had no idea what a wonderful comedic actor he is until I saw him in The Understudy.

Mark and I were already huge fans of co-star Julie White, who plays the stage manager. (We’d seen her in The Little Dog Laughed, for which she won well-deserved Tony and Obie Awards.)

Last, but certainly not least, is co-star Mark-Paul Gosselaar, well known to fans of Raising The Bar, NYPD Blue, and Saved By The Bell.

We’d planned to eat dinner after the show at our favorite Mexican restaurant, Tolache, which I wrote about in my Happy Birthday To Me post. But it was so damn cold out, that the thought of walking even a few measly blocks just wasn’t … well … appetizing. So we decided to give the restaurant next door a try.

Turns out it was a terrific decision. Indian food’s my favorite cuisine and the large and lovely Utsav is Indian food at its finest. Best of all, when you ask for extra spicy, you actually get extra spicy.

Okay, that was last night. But I never got a chance to post about our visit last weekend to the Comix Comedy Club. (New York City has lots of clubs featuring standup comedy, but Comix is quickly becoming a favorite.)

The reason for our latest Comix visit was headliner Kevin Pollak. After decades of seeing his comedy and impersonations on TV shows like The Tonight Show, we were eager to see him live. Wow! He was hilarious, and his impersonations of George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, William Shatner, Robert De Niro, and Christopher Walken were letter perfect.

The two warm-up acts, comedians Steve Patterson and Jon Fisch, were also good, especially Canadian Steve Patterson, whose dry delivery and idiosyncratic point of view were refreshingly funny.

After the show we had drinks at nearby Scarpetta, an Italian restaurant housed in a Greek revival townhouse. Its bar is lively and comfortable, and we would have tried its well-reviewed food, had we not already eaten burgers at Comix. Next time!

(Note to the FTC, which recently passed some annoying blogger regulations: I was neither paid nor comped for these reviews. Trust me, we spent way too much money on both nights.)

Happy Birthday To Me

Sunday, September 13th, 2009

Friday, September 11th was my birthday — one of those traumatizing, ends-with-zero birthdays. So I told my husband Mark that, unless he wanted me to be a basket case on nine-eleven, he’d better plan something good.

So, did Mark rise to the occasion? He sure did, as I describe in this three-verse limerick:

Happy Birthday To Me
By Madeleine Begun Kane

My nine-one-one birthday was great!
Hubby Mark planned a fabulous date:
God of Carnage — fine play —
Four fab stars on Broadway.
Yes, I married a wonderful mate.

The play featured James Gandolfini,
Who did not play a mafia meanie.
Hope Davis starred too
And Jeff Daniels. Woo Hoo!
Marcia Harden’s the fourth. Creds ain’t teeny.

We dined on gourmet Mex cuisine:
Toloache’s the best I have seen.
And we drank and we danced
At two bars. Age advanced?
Well, perhaps … but I felt sweet sixteen.

(Cross-posted on my political humor blog.)