09 March 2009


After a long walk, one is in need of refreshment. And it was a long walk - from Astoria, Queens to the Upper West Side in Manhattan is no joke - approximately 6 miles, according to Map Quest. Now if you're slightly out of shape (and blaming the recent inclement weather), that's quite an accomplishment. I'm not complaining or looking for commendation; just observing. In fact, it was an enjoyable walk, with two good friends for conversation and a definitely scenic route - all on one of the most gorgeous weather days in ages.

At this point, though, we'd worked off our lunches and were looking forward to a nice dinner. What we needed to hold us off was a little break in a cafe - and the Upper West Side has enough of those. Daphne had heard there was one on 84th Street that was on a site Poe once lived at, so...why not?

I was relieved enough upon entering that it was only lightly influenced by all things Poe. There's always the frightening prospect that someone is going to try to pull a Jekyll and Hyde-type restaurant, which is fun if you're in the mood, but I didn't feel like seeing a menu full of ravens and pendulums and tell-tale hearts,and thankfully it was not like that. The ceiling looked a bit flamey, and the chandelier was kind of incongruous next to the very ordinary looking ceiling fans, but it was a pleasant environment.

As a Cheapy Mccheaperson, I was a little wary looking at the menu. Nearly everything was priced slightly above what I was comfortable with, but I was calm enough, knowing I was just going to get dessert and tea. I ordered carrot cake - which was a mistake. I love a good, moist carrot cake with its slightly risky (for me) cream cheese frosting and walnuts. This cake was kosher, though, which perhaps affected its carrot cakeiness. The cake portion was like carrot cake flavored wheat bread, and the frosting was more like low fat butter than cream cheese. Hopefully what was lacking in taste was also lacking in calories. Daphne had a berry rhubarb pie, I think, and she didn't mind it but didn't rhapsodize either. Jodi tried a split pea soup and said it tasted very fresh, so points scored there.

The tea, however, was not a disappointment. I've never heard of Paromi Tea before - but then again it seems there's more tea companies in existence nowadays than the total amount of lovely weather days in my entire life. It was a big plus that they use Paromi tea bags that are of the nice quality pyramid type. I ordered the Lemon Ginger Oolong, which was described as "intensely aromatic and smooth with a gentle lingering of lemon and ginger". That it was. It gave me just enough of a pick-me-up to get me through the rest of the evening (though we didn't actually walk back to Astoria.) And the taste was light and lingering. Beautiful.


I will forgive Edgar's for the dull cake, as I hear some of their desserts are to die for, and I'd like to give them a second chance - when I'm in the splurging mood, of course.

Bathroom report: Very clean and actually pretty; almost felt like I was in a tiny indoor garden/sitting room. These little things are important.


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