March 9th, 2003


From the Franklin Station Cafe to the Bitter End

Had dinner tonight with penchantnyc, R, and W at the Franklin Station Cafe. I had the same thing penchantnyc did as my entree, the "duck roll in spicy orange sauce" or whatever. They were basically like spring rolls, except stuffed w/ duck - a very generous portion of it, and 6 rolls. They were sitting in a gloop of the spicy orange sauce, w/ asparagus and (?) lily petals. The asparagus was an odd choice - I like asparagus but it didn't quite go. The lily blossom petals (or so the waiter said) were interesting - very delicate, subtle flavor that was overwhelmed by the orange sauce, but with a nice crunch and a clean bit of flavor. The duck rolls were, well, duck. Can't go wrong there. Overall, a pretty good dish.

For appetizers, I got a chicken curry puff - which I still maintain are decent but nothing special - and a bowl of potato leek soup, which was disappointing. I've had much better potato leek soups, including one I think made by my mother (but I've also had it better at other restaurants, so it's not just the whole home-made prejudice). For dessert, we each tried something different - I got the raisin carrot cake, which was very dry. If it wasn't for the raisins, it would've been too dry to eat more than a bite or two.

After dinner, we headed over to the Bitter End, where we sat and watched some bands. The first one was Billy Patterson, named cleverly after the lead singer, and was decent but generic music, the kind of thing you've heard a hundred times before. The second set was Guilty, a bluesy rock band from Boston - and they were really good! The lead singer/keyboardist was very talented (and as the website points out: sexy. "Sex, sex, and sex are the three words used to describe this young exotic female's vocals." Sounds more like pr0n to me.), as were the rest - the guitarist, bass player, and drummer were all very good. The bass player played a 6-string bass guitar, which seemed more than a bit unusual, and played it well. He also sang, not so well. The drummer was really good, and apparently is from NYC.

Towards the end of Guilty's set, they sat two other people down at our table (the place was packed). It was really annoying - it was already a little tight, and with them there not only were people bumping my head and back as they walked by, but suddenly all of my leg room disappeared. The smoke level in the room was also picking up, and I had to get going, so we all decided to leave. While paying, I accidentally knocked one of the guys' bottle of beer over, spilling some on him. I apologized, and he said it was ok, but it was a full beer, and left a pregnant pause. I apologized again, and he said it again. I said sorry, and he said it again, with the same pause. So I shrugged and said I'd pay for the beer and threw down a few bucks on the table before I left. I was actually planning on offering him money for the beer, but I almost didn't due to his pushing, but I figured even if he was a bit rude - after all, I did just spill his beer on his lap.

Overall, a nice night. I hadn't had any alcohol for weeks, and hadn't really had anything substantial to drink since October, but I was pleased to see I haven't totally lost my tolerance. I had a (double) shot of Wild Turkey, and 3 hard ciders, and while my stomach was a bit unnerved by the sudden attack of alcohol, the rest of me held up quite nicely. And that, as they say, is that.
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Amazon: 1, -1

I know it's not politically correct to like Amazon, but they've been nothing but great to me. I've gotten quick, responsive service, great prices, fast shipping, and an incredibly useful and intuitive (and fast!) site from them. has fast service, but they screw things up regularly, their prices are usually good but then they'll find another way to stick you (like in shipping costs), they take forever to ship stuff, and in general, they suck. I could get into details, but I don't feel like it. Anyways, the point is: if you want to buy something, go to Amazon, not To Hell with, they blow goats.