New York City Diary

Words and pictures from my interesting life in New York.

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Location: Brooklyn, New York, United States

Sunday, July 17, 2005


Today is Sunday, July 17, 2005. It's 3:09 p.m. and I'm at home. Jenn and I are both working on our computers, enjoying the air conditioning on a very muggy day.

I worked late on Friday and so did Jenn. We took the subway home together and I picked up a bottle of Chilean cabernet sauvignon from the downscale liquor store while Jenn got some rice crackers and other goodies from the upscale bodega.

It was a hot night so we enjoyed a glass of wine in the garden, where it was much cooler than it was inside. We relaxed and chatted and went to bed early.

Yesterday (Saturday) was a day of much running around. In the morning I went out and got a haircut at a barber shop near my subway station. I liked the barber and it was only eight bucks, so I gave him fifteen, because a good haircut is worth at least that.

Then I went into the city multiple times to run various errands. It's good to have an unlimited ride Metrocard. Unfortunately, the subway system let me down in the end. I allowed myself 40 minutes to get to the dojo for kumite class at 4:00 p.m. but there were delays on the L train and then at Union Square there was no uptown local on the N/R line. By the time I got to 23rd Street it was 4:10 p.m., too late to go to kumite class since I'd need time to put on my fight gear. That's how it goes sometimes.

So I came home and Jenn was home and at least I got to enjoy the last few minutes of Globe Trekker Hawaii with her.

After the show ended we got ready and went into Manhattan for an early dinner at a wonderful Greek restaurant in the East Village called Pylos.

You might recall that recently we had a less-than-stellar anniversary dinner at Molyvos, so I wanted to make up for it at a Greek restaurant we knew we liked.

Pylos, which is located on East Seventh Street between First Avenue and Avenue A, gets pretty busy on weekends, and we didn't have a reservation, but since it was early (about 6:45 p.m.) we were seated at a nice table away from the street.

After perusing the menu and hearing about the specials, Jenn and I decided on a Greek-style hot octopus appetizer and a bowl of olives as a starter. With that we had a nice Greek cabernet sauvignon called Kechris, from Kavala, Macedonia.

The octopus (called "htapothi scharas") was excellent, much better than the octopus that arrived thirty seconds after we ordered it at Molyvos. It was even better than most of the octopus we ordered while we were in Greece. And the olives were good too. They also brought us some toast points with a fava bean dip.

(Fava beans are one of very few crops grown on the volcanic island of Santorini. The others are cherry tomatoes, capers, white eggplants, and grapes, for winemaking.)

For our entrees, Jenn ordered the "solomos ston atmo," which is poached salmon served over spinach rice pilaf with sun-dried tomato and olive sauce. I had the branzino, which is a fancy name for sea bass. It was roasted and served whole, deboned but with head and tail on the plate, which didn't bother me. I had a side dish of spinach.

Jenn's salmon was quite good, but my branzino was spectacular. A fish of a lifetime. Everything was excellent. It was a truly great Greek meal. We toasted our anniversary for a second time.

We savored every morsel of food and drop of wine. After paying the check we took a walk down East Seventh Street to a funky clothing boutique Jenn had noticed on the walk to the restaurant. I was hoping it would be closed but I guess they stay open late on Saturday nights. Since we had just come from a Greek restaurant it reminded us of the late-night shopping scene on Mykonos. Stores were doing a brisk business well up until 4:00 a.m. and then some.

I'm not a very patient shopper but Jenn found a pair of white pants she liked and bought them in near-record time. They are nice pants, fine pants.

We walked up First Avenue to 14th Street and then took the subway to Bedford Avenue in Brooklyn. We had thought about having a drink at Spike Hill but we looked in and it seemed a bit too raucous for what we wanted.

So we walked to Royal Oak and had a drink there. Jenn got a glass of wine and I ordered a vodka martini.

Royal Oak is a very funky bar in Williamsburg that reminds me of a Los Angeles bar, because it has a lot of space and lots of high-backed black vinyl banquettes and booths. We took our drinks to the big and very dimly-lit back room and had the whole place to ourselves (Royal Oak gets crowded late, and we were there pretty early). It was a pleasant scene, like we were on vacation. We sat in the corner on a curved banquette, the VIP section in a dark, empty room. The speakers were pumping out an eclectic selection of songs, mostly good.

We only stayed for that one drink, although we lingered. Then we took a short walk home and read the Sunday New York Times that we had purchased earlier in the evening. We went to bed at a reasonable hour.

We woke up today (Sunday) at 10:00-ish and I went to the dojo for a kata class. On the way home I bought bagels from David's bagels. Now it's 3:51 p.m. and we're going to clean the house, or at least that's the plan.


Blogger Jenn said...

Everything was excellent at Pylos--including the service. And the wine was the perfect complement (nice choice, Victor). It was a truly great Greek meal, and a wonderful way to celebrate our first anniversary a second time.

4:59 PM  
Anonymous Christos and Valérie said...

Dear Jenn and Victor
Happy second first Anniversary and thank you so much for the wonderful review you wrote on our restaurant!
Christos and Valérie

8:12 AM  

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