Tips on Tables (1934)

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Wed Aug 1 03:39:07 UTC 2001

by George Ross
Covici Friede Publishers

   A gem.
   I had missed it because it was under New York "State" restaurants instead of "NYC."  Also, it was under restaurant "guidebooks."
   It antedates "egg roll."  It antedates "Beef a la Lindstrom."  It's got a nice "boula."  "Swedish meatballs" and "side car" also come close to the first cites.
   Take a look, but eat first.

Pg. 11:  THE Great Drought, the fourteen arid years, is over.

Pg. 13:  NEW YORK is a town of restaurants of all nations.  On this most cosmopolitan of cosmopolitan islands, you may avail yourself of smorgasbord in a Swedish valhalla...of chicken paprika in a Czecho-Slovakian eating house...of shrimps and crispy, egg rolls in a Chinese pagoda...of sweetbread _braisee bordelaise_ in a French sidestreet cafe...of hot tamales in a minature Mexican _hacienda_...of _Brauerwursten_ in a German _Brauhaus_...of borscht and pirojok in a dimly lighty Russian den...of English sole in a musty chophouse.

Pg. 22:  MORI'S 144 Bleecker Street (West Broadway & Thompson Street)
The chicken _a la_ Cacciatora, the veal cutlet _a la_ Mori, saute in butter with Italian ham, and (to put the first last) the _hors d'oeuvres_ are a few of the specialties you will remember Mori's by.

Pg. 25:  CAUCASIAN EAGLE 112 East 55th Street (Park & Lexington Avenues)
The borscht with pirojok, the _blinchiki_, and the cutlets _Ved Volay_ (breast of chicken cooked in some mysterious fashion) are all excellent and are included on the _table d'hote_ luncheon and dinner.

Pg. 31:  EL CHICO Sheridan Square, Corner of Grove Street
>From the _huevos malaguena_, eggs done brown with the yolks intact, together with asparagus tips highly seasoned with a Spanish pepper sauce; the _arroz con pollo_, tender chicken prepared with yellow rice; the delicious _salada_; to the dessert--_rum-soaked custard cone_--which the swarthy senor who is your waiter will describe to you as "the little drunken fellers!" it is a meal you will not easily forget.

Pg. 32:  BERTOLOTTI'S 85 West 3rd Street (Thompson and Sullivan Streets)
.._ossi buchi con rissotto_, veal on the marrow bone, surrounded by hills of rice, drowned in a savory sauce...

Pg. 33: THE HOTEL CHATHAM Vanderbilt Avenue and 48th Street
The chef's specialties are bisque of lobster Victoria, spring chicken _saute chasseur_, and his original dessert, souffle pudding _cardinal_.

Pg. 35: THE WHITE WHALE 17 Barrow Street (7th Avenue and West 4th Street)
One may also relish the Provincetown mackerel, the Portuguese cabbage soup, and the spaghetti.

Pg. 35:  THE VALHALLA 141 West 54th Street (6th and 7th Avenues)
Particularly, the daily specialties: Swedish meatballs on Wednesdays, the pea soup (Pg. 36--ed.) accompanied by Swedish punch and Swedish pancakes on Thursdays; boiled lamb in dill sauce on Fridays, and _kaldomar_, which is Swedish for stuffed cabbage, on Saturdays.

Pg. 37:  CSARDA 203 East 92nd Street (2nd and 3rd Avenues)
Apple strudel, _mohnkuchen_, and cream and cheese pancakes are the chief desserts.

Pg. 37: MAISON ROYALE 6 East 52nd Street (5th and 6th Avenues)
But to get on to the gastronomical details, the Maison Royale's French cuisine is something unique, and the chicken _mascotte_ and lobster _a la_ Newburg are its prides.  But it's sheer reportorial ineptitude to overlook the casaba melon; the _potage mongole_, heated over a little alcohol burner at your tableside; the sausage _gastronome_, an entree to delight any epicurean soul; and _meringue Chantilly_ in the way of dessert.

HOME DINING ROOM 323 East 79th Street (1st and 2nd Avenues)
ALTHOUGH this plain and thoroughly native little restaurant has always been the gathering place of visiting and resident Hungarians, it has recently begun to cater more and more to the Americans who have been made chicken-_paprika_ conscious. (...)  Singled out for honors are the goulashes, the stuffed cabbage, and the _strudel_.

Pg. 46: SMALL'S PARADISE 2294 7th Avenue (135th Street)
WHEN you finish the descent of the dark stairs leading to Small's Paradise, and the jubilant and drawn-out ecstatic shouts of "Yeah Man!" crash around your ears, don't be astonished to find the coterie in this torrid spot racially mixed.

Pg. 56: HOTEL ST. MORITZ 50 Central Park South (5th and 6th Avenues)
The cuisine is tempting to even the not-so-hungry with dishes such as grilled _moisette_ of lamb _Marguery_ and lobster _a la_ Newburg; among the desserts, do not pass up the _baba au rhum_, which is delicious.

The _a la carte_ dinners will run to about $4, and chicken _chinois_ is the very special dish.

Pg. 59: THE WALDORF-ASTORIA Park Avenue and 49th Street
And the lamb stew _parisienne_, the breast of chicken, sweetbread _sans souci_, and the minced chicken _hongroise_ are what the chef declares to be the specialties of the cuisine.

Pg. 64: THE VILLAGE BREWERY 186 West 4th Street (Jones and Barrow Streets)
You can get a spaghetti and chicken _a la cacciatora_ dinner there now for $1...

Pg. 66:  The cafe is a "grab it and git" affair, equipped with a service bar and bare tables where light refreshments are served.

Pg. 76: MOSKOWITZ & LUPOWITZ 40 2nd Avenue (East 2nd and 3rd Streets)
But if you stick to the standard foods, you'll be served with as upright a _table d'hote_ful of barley soup with mushrooms, potato _lotkes_, and _carnatzel_ (a skinless sausage cooked with vegetables and garlic) as you can procure anywhere south of 14th Street.

Pg. 82: THE MONTE ROSA 132 West 48th Street (6th and 7th Avenues)
They take infinite pride in their _minestrone_, garden style, and in their spaghetti, their lobster, and their _scallopine_ of veal _a la Pizzaiuola_ with mushrooms, and they will concot these specialties for you with their own sturdy hands.

Pg. 84: PROGRESSIVO RESTAURANT 197 Mulberry Street (Broome and Spring Streets)
THE Progressivo Restaurant has become the favorite foregathering place of struggling writers, artists, and other purse-proud Bohemians who, between huge forkfuls of spaghetti and gulps of "Dago red," discuss the problems of the universe.

Pg. 85: HANG FAR LOW 23 Pell Street (Doyers and Mott Streets)
The _table d'hote_ dinner is 65 cents, and don't forget to start off with the mushroom and chicken soup with egg drop.

Pg. 91: THE PARISIEN 304 West 56th Street (8th and 9th Avenues)
The aroma arising from such dishes as chicken _Tetrazzini_, Guinea Hen _berlinoise_, and _scallopine_ of veal _a la Marsala_ furnishes enough atmosphere for the steady patrons of this ordinary-in-everything-but-food restaurant.

Pg. 92: LA FOURCHETTE 342 West 46th Street (8th and 9th Avenues)
The breast of chicken _Veronique_ served with grapes, the breast of guinea hen _continental_ with mushrooms, and the steak _marchand_ with wine sauce are the culinary specialties.

Pg. 99: NAPOLI RESTAURANT 30 East 28th Street (Fourth and Madison Avenues)
..such Italian delicacies as veal cutlet _a la parmigiana_ and _lasagne_.

Pg. 111: BEAUX ARTS 80 West 40th Street (5th and 6th Avenues)
In this venerable dining spot one may treat one's palate to such delicacies as wild duck _flambe_, terrapin Maryland, lambkin _marchand du vin_, and the real _piece de resistance_--_poussin Josephine_.  A visitor looking for an extraordinary dish should by all means try the last.  _Poussin Josephine_ consists of a delicately cooked boneless squab chicken, stuffed with _pate de foi gras_.

Pg. 119: CHINA GARDEN 75 Second Avenue (4th and 5th Streets)
But the varieties of chow mein and the egg Foo Yung are well-prepared, and the prices are more than moderate.

Pg. 120: RUGANI AND BORSOTTI 115 Waverly Place (MacDougal Street and 6th Avenue)
The coffee is strong and black; the spaghetti _a la_ Mussolini tinged with just enough garlic; and the veal _scallopini alla Marsala_ (cooked in sour white wine) is superb.

Pg. 123: THE FAR EAST TEA GARDEN 10 Columbus Circle (Near West 59th Street)
The chicken and pineapple chow mein is delicious, and so is the egg roll--a light, fine-textured substance that melts effortlessly in your mouth.

Pg. 124: THE PLAZA HOTEL 5th Avenue at 59th Street
The food is superb, and the menu is hardly ever complete unless it contains squab chicken _en cocotte_, with mushrooms as large as a fist, the quarter of a baby lamb _nivernaise_, or the grilled sweetbreads on toast.

Pg. 126: GUIDO'S RESTAURANT 166 West 48th Street (6th and 7th Avenues)
A full-course dinner at Guido's, consisting of the antipasto, the _minestrone_, the spaghetti, the chicken _alla cacciatora_ or the veal _scallopine_, the spumoni, and the heavy, black Italian coffee is served for 75 cents and for 55 cents, with minor deletions.

Pg. 131: GERTNER'S 1380 Broadway (37th and 38th Streets)
CLAIMANTS to the dubious honor of being the first to introduce Danish pastry to New York's citizenry, Gertner's now steps forth to herald the addition of _sukiyaki_ (_a la Gertner) to their menu. (...)  Whether or not they introduced Danish pastry, their assortment is still very fine.

Pg. 137: GALOTTI'S 64 West 10th Street (5th and 6th Avenues)
You will be going to Galotti's for spaghetti, or course, but all the special Italian dishes are available, and these include _ossi buchi_.

Pg. 141:  A bottle of strong red wine ("ink" to those in the know) is served for $1.20.

Pg. 157: EL GAUCHO 245 Sullivan Street (West 3rd Street and West Washington Square)
Particularly the _arroz con pollo_, a savory dish of chicken and yellow rice; the _huevos malaguena_, the eggs fried Spanish style' the squab chicken with _pate de foie gras_ stuffing; and the special Spanish desserts.

Pg. 157: BOSPORUS 6 East 30th Street (5th and Madison Avenues)
_Yalanji yaprak_, a concoction of rice and onions wrapped in vine leaves and cooked in olive oil; _biber dolma_, a green pepper, stuffed with chopped meat, rice, and tomatoes and cooked in lamb broth; _shish kebab_, the Armenian mate to Russian _shashlik_ (Pg. 158--ed.), consisting of small pieces of the tenderest lamb, seasoned on brochettes and grilled; _ayva_ compote, a dish of stewed quinces served with orange compote, flavored with pine nuts, and _paklava_, layers of transparent crisps soaked in sugar syrups--they arte all part and parcel of a genuine Armenian dinner at the Bosporus.

Pg. 159: ..._shish kebab_ and _tass kebab_...

Pg. 163: LUM FONG'S 220 Canal Street (Off Baxter Street)
A few of the specialties from Mr. Fong's kitchen are _moo goo gai pen_ (sliced breast of chicken with mushrooms and bamboo shoots), Chinese _kreplach_ (Mr. Levy's contribution), fresh lobster Canton style, real Chinese noodles, egg roll, and roast duck.

Pg. 163: CUBANACA 75 Lenox Avenue (114th Street and Lenox Avenue)
Or perhaps you might like the filet _Crillo_, which is filet mignon done in the best Cuban style with a very sharp sauce.

Pg. 165: THE RED DEVIL INN (THE DIABLO ROSSO) 173 Mott Street (At Broome Street)
Especially to be recommended are the _gamberi alla fradivola_ (fresh shrimps cooked in a marvelous manner with paprika), the veal _scallopini_, and the lobster done in special Diablo Rosso style.  The "dago red" is quite potent, but still manages to blend in harmoniously with the food served.

Pg. 169: MONETA'S 32 Mulberry Street (Near Park and Bayard Streets)
And some of the dishes that you will salute him for are the _zuppa di pesce_, the _bouillabaisse marseillais_, the ravioli _al pollo_, and the spaghetti _bolognese_.

Pg. 172: NAGY'S 219 East 79th Street (2nd and 3rd Avenues)
Under her magic mixing spoon emerge such palatable specialties as chicken _paprika_, port _gulyas_ with cream _kraut_, _toltott borju lapocka karfioval_ (the most inviting platter of stuffed shoulder of veal that you will encounter in the Hungarian oases of New York), chicken fricassee with kohlrabi, and potted pork and egg barley.  Mother Nagy's desserts will send you flying into her arms, particularly the pancakes made with cream cheese, the _Mohn kuchen_, the _Apfelstrudel_, and the hazelnut cake.  The cost of a full-course dinner?  Sixty cents.

Pg. 175: THE MIYAKO 340 West 58th Street (8th and 9th Avenues)
In an atmosphere that is more Italian rococco than Tokio, _sukiyaki_ (which is to the Japanese what corned beef and cabbage is to the Irish), _kenchin_ (vegetable soup), _mushi-zakana_ (steamed fish with rice cooked in _skoyu_ sauce)and _tempura_ (huge, puffed, fried shrimps) are miraculously prepared.

Pg. 178: THE MEXICAN RESTAURANT 58 West 109th Street (Manhattan and Columbus Avenues)
A typical dinner at Tovar's usually consists of _entremas_, which is Mexican for _hors d'oeuvres_, of which there are two varieties: _guajamole_, a paste of alligator pear and chicory, and _entremes variados_, a concoction of alligator pear and pickles cactus, radishes, sardines, anchovies, and so on.  The tamales, of course, will be your entree, and the Mole Poblano is another good bet.  Have it with _frijoles refritas_, a red bean paste, or chile rellenos, green peppers stuffed with cheese.  Guava fruit is the standard dessert.  And it all comes to a single dollar.

Pg. 182:  THE SWEDISH RATHSKELLER 201 East 52nd Street (At 3rd Avenue)
Beef _a la_ Lindstrom, the chopped sirloin steak with capers and pickled beets, is a spicy dish...
(Jean Anderson's AMERICAN CENTURY COOKBOOK has a first cite of 1939--ed.)

Pg. 184: THE CONSTANTINOPLE 12 East 30th Street (5th and Madison Avenues)
The names of the Armenian specialties have already appeared in our description of the Bosporus, but for the record's sake, they are _banjeban gavej_, _shish kebab_, _Bamia bassdi_, _boulghour pilaff_ (cracked wheat, the Armenian National Dish), and _ekmek kadavij_ with _kaymak_.

Pg. 193: BELL MANSION 312 West 75th Street (West End Avenue and Riverside Drive)
After the caviar comes _boula_, a deliciously prepared soup made from such singularly incongruous ingredients as turtle and pea soups and sherry, topped off with a spoonful of whipped cream and then baked in the oven.

Pg. 198:  THE SHERRY-NETHERLAND 5th Avenue at 59th Street
..tomato _monegasque_, stuffed with crab flakes...

Pg. 205: LINDY'S RESTAURANT 1655 Broadway (Near West 51st Street)
Their most popular eating pastime is referred to literally as "tearing a herring," and their favourite, substantial platter consists of smoked salmon and eggs, fried together.

Pg. 216 THE RUSSIAN TEA ROOM 150 West 57th Street (6th and 7th Avenues)
At dinner, the favorite items of the menu are soup _shosor_ of vegetables, _farshmak_ (Pg. 217--ed.) _a la_ Dragomirov (highly seasoned grilled beef) and dessert--halvah in great, massive blocks.  And all for 90 cents.

Pg. 218: THE KING'S TERRACE 240 West 52nd Street (Broadway and 8th Avenue)
BACK in the old days, when Utah was still a nonentity and they even let women stand up at bars, the King's Terrace was the _ne plus ultra_ of the uptown saloons.
(Pg. 219--ed.)
For dining at the King's Terrace did, and still does, consist of a veritable parade of palatable delicacies such as _boula gratinee_ (pea soup helped along with green turtle and sherry), lobster _cardinal_, and Virginia Ham _Eugenie_.

Pg. 222: THE WEYLIN 40 East 54th Street (Madison and Park Avenues)
The cocktails are matchlessly blended, and the bartender at The Weylin has a penchant for concocting Manhattans, so let his proficiency be your guide, although we suggest the Bacardi and the Side Cars, too.

Pg. 229:  SCHRAFFT'S 556 Fifth Avenue (At 46th Street)
Though its four floors are devoted entirely to providing food, you may have to wait for hours before the hostess puts up two fingers (the general high-sign) and ushers you to a table originally intended for two, but now occupied by two total strangers who becomes your luncheon companions.
(This could be the "V" sign that I spotted before, pre-WWII--ed.)

Pg. 244: SHERRY'S 300 Park Avenue (At East 49th Street)
In spite of Sherry's reputation for French ice cream sodas, the cocktails, which begin at 35 cents, are weill-mixed. (...)  The lobster _cardinal_, the plover _en casserole_ with wild rice, the _grenadine_ of veal _saute_ and, of course, the _petit fours_ have contributed to Sherry's reputation.

Pg. 248: MARY ELIZABETH'S 392 Fifth Avenue (At East 36th Street)
The cream of shrimp soup, New Orleans style, is what the ladies refer to as "deevine"...

Pg. 274:  THE TRUFOOD RESTAURANT 155 West 44th Street (6th and 7th Avenues)
Dedicated to nourishing the vegetarians, the Trufood pulls the wool over its clients eyes by listing such spurious specialties as Mock Chicken Salad, Mock Breaded Veal Cutlet, and Imitation Filet Mignon.  The roasts are made from nut meats, and every other phoney platterful is made of vegetable compound.  The prices are mock, too.

Pg. 278: MAISON LOUIS 67 West 52nd Street (5th and 6th Avenues)
Especially to be recommended is the mixed grill and the spaghetti _milanese_.

Pg. 282: FORNOS RESTAURANT 228 West 52nd Street (Broadway and 8th Avenue)
Among the dishes you should ask for are the jellied rice with chicken, Mexican tamales, and the weirdly labeled _mole_ of turkey, which is turkey soaked in a special sauce that is hotter than Hades.

More information about the Ads-l mailing list