Tag Archives: Fries

When in Doubt, ‘Bird it Out

So, maybe you’re on instagram, or facebook, and you’re kind of hungry. You see a picture of a fuku sandwich and you think to yourself, damn. I really need to get down to the East Village and eat some chicken.

Well, maybe this only happens to me. But you go to Columbia, and getting down there to go to a restaurant where you have to wait in line for an hour and then there’s not anywhere to sit is kind of a trek.

Have no fear: Streetbird is here.

Streetbird Rotisserie, owned by Chef Marcus Samuelsson, who also owns the Red Rooster, is a casual restaurant which focuses on the often forgotten chicken.

What a cutie.

It’s located on 116th and Frederick Douglass Boulevard, about a ten minute walk away from campus. And they have all the chicken one could desire. In ramen, rice, rigatoni, and rotisserie.

On the last day of classes last semester, post chemistry final, my roommate and I walked through Morningside Park for some fried chicken sandwiches:


We both ordered the Crispy Bird Sandwich, so I can’t report back on anything else, but if it tastes as good as this sandwich did, everything must be top notch.


The sandwich is served on a toasted potato roll. A piece of chicken is battered, fried, and then doused in sweet, smoky, delicious barbecue sauce. It’s topped with melted cheddar and placed on a bed of mayo, lettuce, and tomato. A couple of pickles complete the set.

While the idea is already excellent, the execution is terrific. It’s difficult to put a wet sauce on crispy fried food without making a soggy mess, and it’s accomplished here.


We also split an order of Ying and Yang fries, which are half sweet potato, half regular, topped with parmesan. These were addictive. Crispy, but not burned. You can’t beat topping something with cheese.

While I can’t quite figure out the Asian influence—I think it’s mostly just preference, what the cooks like to cook—Streetbird is a fun place. The walls are decorated colorfully, the staff is friendly, and you’re likely, I guess, to run into a Chopped judge, like we did (it was Aaron Sanchez).


Bathroom mural.
Bathroom mural.

And I’m still craving that sandwich, two months later, which is always a good sign. I’m going to go back soon. Maybe tomorrow.



2149 Frederick Douglass Blvd, (212) 206-2557

Atmosphere: Upbeat, friendly.

Noise Level: moderate

Recommended Dishes: crispy bird sandwich, ying and yang fries

Price range: $

Hours: 11:30am–10pm, Mon-Fri; 10:30am–12am, Sat; 10:30am-10pm, Sun



International Foods of NYC: Poutine, the greasy, Canadian staple

Poutine – the ultimate comfort food.

Instead of escaping to the sunny beach, I decided to venture to chilly Montreal during spring break. It is a relaxed city with a very fun nightlife, perfect for students. A Montreal staple is poutine, French fries covered with gravy and topped with cheese curds. The gravy gives the fries a soggy texture and the cheese curds add chewiness. It’s as gluttonous as it sounds.

Classic Poutine

A common tale about poutine’s origins tells the story of Fernand Lachance who asked for cheese curds on top of his fries, exclaiming how it would be such a mess. He called it a ‘poutine,’ which means mess in French. Gravy was later added to keep the fries warm. Eating poutine is truly a messy process so there definitely is a reason for its name.

‘Frites Alors!’ is a restaurant in Montreal that specializes in poutine, selling the classic along with several different variations. The most popular combination is the ‘Frites Alors!’ special which comes with sautéed onions, peppers, and mushrooms on top of the traditional toppings. It adds flavor to the rather bland mix. However, the lethargic and stuffed feeling that comes after eating poutine is inevitable, no matter what is put on top.



Frite Alors! Special

New York is the city with all kinds of food so surely there must be places that serve this not-so delicate delicacy. In fact, there are two rather popular Canadian restaurants that both reference the Mile End district of Montreal, the equivalent to New York’s Soho, in their title. Zagat has rated both these restaurants, ‘Mile End,’ located in Noho on Bond Street, and ‘Mile End Delicatessen,’ located in Brooklyn, amongst the best fries in New York City. They are both given very high ratings on Yelp, Google, and Zagat.

Note, while eating poutine, it’s important not to be self-aware. Or else you begin to freak out about the high calories and total lack of nutrients that you’re consuming. Thus, it’s the perfect late night food that warms you and puts you to sleep. I can see why it is such a staple in Quebec given the cold and wintery climate.


Postcards from Paris: Le Relais de l’Entrecôte


There are moments in life where only one thing will do : steak. Then there are other moments in life where only one thing will do : fries. Thankfully, the French understand this universal truth and have blessed us with “steak-frites.”

When in Paris, one can get steak-frites at pretty much any bisto. But even though you are in the culinary capital of the world, there is no guarantee that what you will be served is meltingly-tender beef and hot, salty and perfectly crispy fries. Trust me… I’ve had my fair share of shoe-leather steaks and limp, sad, soggy potatoes. But not at Le Relais de l’Entrecôte.

Founded in 1959, this Parisian institution has maintained its old-school image : uniformed waitresses, red leather bench seats and most importantly, their house recipe for steak-frites, which is the only thing served.

Crème brûlée

First, after you take your table, you are asked if you would like an apéritif, which I didn’t get since I was so hungry I could have started knawing on my own arm. Next. the waitress asked not what we would like to eat, but instead one simple question : how would you like your meet cooked? In true French style, I ordered my meat “bleu,” which translates to a little more rare than rare, which leaves the meat so red that it is almost blue. Yum.

Then we were served with a normal, nothing-special green salad. Which was to be the only fiber or vitamins present at this meal.


Then arrives the steak-frites. Half the plate comes filled with skinny, crispy, salty and still-hot fries, leaving the other half with five slices of beautiful steak covered in their house sauce, which is probably a LOT of butter infused with parsely and thyme. As already mentioned, the meat is cooked to perfection, no matter how you ask for it to be cooked. For me, my “blue” steak was incredibly tender and despite the fact that is was almost raw, every bite, even from the center of the steak, was warm. Finally, the frites were crazy-good, especially those that spent a good ten minutes soaking in meat-juice and thyme-butter.

And to top it all off, profiteroles with a delicate, bitter-sweet chocolate sauce a delicous crème brûlée, perfumed with vanilla.

I. Love. Paris.