A Year In New York

A Daily Bite of the Big Apple

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Day 10: A Sandwich to Die For

July 6th · 3 Comments

I found myself in Gramercy and it was such a nice evening that I decided to walk to my next destination on East 68th Street. That’s about 47 blocks. On foot you realize how big the island of Manhattan really is.

Forty-seven blocks is roughly the length of Central Park, and Central Park, for all its storied history, is just a sausage of green in a giant stewpot of concrete. I hoofed it through Murray Hill and Midtown and the Lower East Side and past a succession of outdoor cafes buzzing with conversation, women carrying little dogs in their purses and the odd cloud of rotting vegetables wafting up from a restaurant cellar.

An hour later I got to 68th Street and kept on walking and walking until my stomach cried for attention. Lenny’s caught my eye, a sandwich joint that I later learned is one of a ten-store chain in the city. Newspaper clippings on the wall reported sightings at this very counter of Tom Cruise and Bono (not together, thankfully).

I ordered the Jimmy T, a chicken cutlet with grilled onions and peppers and honey mustard. The waxed-paper bundle was depressingly small when it arrived. I performed last rites over it at an outside table.

As the rockstar look-alikes and models passed by on their way to a night of partying, I took a bite and nearly swooned. Maybe I was hungrier than I thought from all the walking, or perhaps I have discovered that rarest of things, a transcendent sandwich. If at that moment a Duane Reade delivery truck had plowed into the patio where I sat and struck me dead, I would have died a happy man. That’s how good it was.

Tags: Dining · Sights & Scenes · Why I Love This Town

3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Dan // Jul 11, 2008 at 6:24 pm

    I’m enjoying your posts with the double pleasure of: knowing you almost 14 years; and being a NY expat myself.
    And have you had a really good pizza or bagel yet? They don’t get any better than in NY.


  • 2 Pat Shea // Jul 14, 2008 at 5:14 pm

    OK David, maybe you should take up writing restaurant reviews. I love the sandwich, bagel, wine bar comments. Have fun, Pat

  • 3 Bev // Jul 26, 2008 at 2:42 pm

    omg, (sorry, I am SO in love w/ Manhattan, and living vicariously through your blog, that it is very likely that all my posted comments will begin with these three letters, but anyway…) MOST of the food in NYC is orgasmic! At least that’s what this food addict found. One person’s explanation to me was that of the immigrating Italians, the food Italians stayed in Manhattan and all the wine Italians continued on to CA. Another explanation I obtained was that you HAD to be outstanding in NY or else you’d be closed in a NY minute!…that the businesses there are like a revolving door (whatever that means). Enjoy (for me)!! 😛

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