Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Keste and a walk around the neighborhood

Last Sunday we went to Keste for lunch.


There seems to have been an incredible amount of enthusiasm surrounding the opening of this place, at least among my friends. The buzz somehow left me unaffected back in 2009, although on the weekends especially the sidewalk outside of this restaurant is packed. Look at this overhead sidewalk heater.


How thoughtful. So how are the pies? I got the Keste pizza.


Mabel ordered the Capricciosa.


On both, the crust was perfect, so satisfyingly chewy. And the ingredients seemed impeccable. The only problem was that both pies were a bit soggy in the middle. I found that I absolutely had to do the fold in order eat this pizza, and after that it was pleasant. But I wonder if it has to be that way. Anyway, I thought it was delicious, although a bit expensive.

Afterwards, we walked around the neighborhood. I've had Thomas Jefferson's Letter to Peter Carr on my mind lately.
The object of walking is to relax the mind. You should therefore not permit yourself even to think while you walk; but divert your attention by the objects surrounding you. Walking is the best possible exercise. Habituate yourself to walk very far. The Europeans value themselves on having subdued the horse to the uses of man; but I doubt whether we have not lost more than we have gained, by the use of this animal. No one has occasioned so much, the degeneracy of the human body. An Indian goes on foot nearly as far in a day, for a long journey, as an enfeebled white does on his horse; and he will tire the best horses. There is no habit you will value so much as that of walking far without fatigue. I would advise you to take your exercise in the afternoon: not because it is the best time for exercise, for certainly it is not; but because it is the best time to spare from your studies; and habit will soon reconcile it to health, and render it nearly as useful as if you gave to that the more precious hours of the day.

The first thing I noticed was this horrendous paint job on Greenwich Village Bistro.


I do not like that color at all. I got a bunch of high school friends together here back in 2008 or thereabouts. They have live music and it's pretty easy to get a table for a group on the weekends. The food is below average, but edible and won't get in the way of good conversation.

Just a few doors down, we saw that Beard Papa had closed.


It felt like just a few days before that it was still in business. Mabel and I talked about how we should get a cream puff there at some point and she was puzzled about what a Hemmingway-esque cartoon character has to do with cream puffs. I did not have an answer for her.

We had to stop by Bobst Library, then crossed Washington Square Park on our return loop. I couldn't resist snapping this picture.


On our way to Citarella, we saw Insomnia Cookies.


This was perfect. Mabel was thinking about chocolate chip cookies all day.


They keep the cookies in a warmer, so they are really good when you buy them. After they cool, they become average cookies but for $1 you can't complain.

Update 2/28/2010
By the way, I like the cream puffs from Beard Papas. There is a pudding-like center encased in a shell with powdered sugar on top. Everything is in perfect balance. They are a pleasure to eat. I'll have to take Mabel to one of their other locations.

Keste Pizza & Vino
271 Bleecker St (btn Jones and Cornelia)
New York, NY 10014
(212) 243-1500

Greenwich Village Bistro
13 Carmine St (near Father Demo Square)
New York, NY 10014

Beard Papa West Village (CLOSED)
5 Carmine St (near Father Demo Square)
New York, NY 10014

Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012

Insomnia Cookies
50 W 8th St (btn MacDougal St and 6th Ave)
New York, NY 10011

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