What can you say about Alton Brown? He's the reason I once bought swim goggles to make a grilled cheese. Something about a blow torch and eye protection and the chemical reaction that happens when heat molecules meet cheddar molecules. I'm not really sure...all I know is that I was into it.
Whether or not you've been motivated to make similar purchases, if you have watched any sort of food programming on television over the last decade, chances are Alton Brown has been involved in the best of it. From his groundbreaking show Good Eats to Iron Chef to The Next Food Network Star, Alton has become one of the most compelling personalities in food, creating a whole new category of nerd-chef that is part Charlie Rose, part Ben Franklin, and part Christopher Kimball. If you want to know why your food tastes good, there's nobody better than Alton Brown to explain it to you.
As a result, we asked AB to explain to you why he loves some of his favorite restaurants in NYC, including the fact that 9th Street Espresso serves the best coffee in town, and why Zucker's is the place to get your whitefish. Put on some goggles and get to reading.
alton's "perfect for" picks
"The crowd inside Jonathan Waxman’s eatery is always lively, but it’s the passerby at the corner of Washington and West 12th that provide the real show."
"Maybe it’s the fact it’s been around since the 20s, or that the likes of Hemingway and Cummings used to dine there, or…that burger. Whatever “it” is, to my mind, nothing in NYC feels as much like NYC as a dinner at Minetta Tavern. Now if I could only get a reservation."
"Three things to keep in mind about Bobby Flay’s newest: It’s gorgeous, it’s his best food since Bolo, and he’s there...a lot."
"I’ve spent enough time in this city to know this is the best coffee in New York City. There I said it. And I stand by it. No matter what you order (latte, cappuccino, etc.), it’s the best. And they have multiple locations, so there’s no excuse not to try it."
"There are a lot of bagels in this city. A lot of good bagels and a lot of bad ones. I happen to like Zucker’s because it had a fantastic bagel and the best smoked whitefish spread around. I’ve recently started to add a slice of tomato too."