Stars Over Texas

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

You can take the girl out of the honkey tonk...

I have lived in New York for 6.5 weeks, and tonight absolutely, positively felt like home for the first time.  And it's all because this Southern girl got a bit of the Lone Star state in the Empire state.

I journeyed to the DUMBO neighborhood in Brooklyn this afternoon.  New Yorkers like to name every possible tiny little corner of a neighborhood to create a new, trendy, up and coming district that will inevitably drive real estate prices through the roof.  HIMYM fans...please see Dowisetrepla episode for a full explanation.  DUMBO stands for Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass.  It's right by the Brooklyn Bridge.

True to it's name, here's the Manhattan Bridge...

Since I was a little early, I wandered around the area.  I am always on the hunt for new restaurants and places to take visitors.  (NOT SO SUBTLE HINT: COME VISIT)  There might have been a Jacques Torres chocolate chip cookie involved in this wandering.  If you ever need a free way to spend an afternoon in New York, definitely head to the Brooklyn Bridge.  It's a beautiful area.  Also, there is an ice cream factory at the base of the bridge.  Also, if you're ever looking to sweep me off my feet in a great big grand romantic gesture that involves diamonds, there's The River Cafe.

But on to the reason for the Brooklyn jaunt...

It should come as no shock that the Southern girl in me is feeling super homesick lately.  I spend my time daydreaming about Tex Mex and BBQ and all the things that New York just does not do well.  I miss enchiladas and quality salsa and the smell of charcoal grilling in backyards.  In my search to recreate home (or distract myself long enough to get back home), I stumbled upon The Homesick Texan.  The blogger/author moved to New York from Texas when she was 25, couldn't find any decent Tex Mex, cooked her own, and starting writing/blogging.  Sound familiar?

So as it turns out, Lisa's cookbook launch was tonight, just in time for me to attend.  I expected nostalgia and a deep desire to spend a few days in Hill Country.  I did not expect the countless references to Ninfa's, kolaches, and Rotel.  I took one bite of the green salsa and was back at Ninfa's in good old Waco. People, I seriously dream about green sauce at Ninfa's, so this was pretty monumental.  

I left with a list of NYC restaurants that attempt Tex Mex, a few BBQ recommendations, and a warning that nothing will ever compare to the Lone Star state.  But then again, I already knew that.

...but you can't take the honkey tonk out of the girl.

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