As part of her Christmas gift, I took FeistyMom around the city, giving her a full city experience. I decided that the laidback, casual but oh so delicious Pearl Oyster Bar would be perfect for FeistyMom ; I knew she’d be uncomfortable in a more upscale place, feeling out of place despite any protestations on my part that well, I go to upscale joints fairly regularly and don’t give a crap that I’m not decked out in all the latest designer wear, and any more casual and I wouldn’t feel it a special enough occasion. Pearl Oyster Bar was perfect.
We arrived at about 6:15 last Friday, and to my surprise, we were told we wouldn’t be able to get a table until about 7 pm. FeistyMom gamely agreed to sit at the bar, declaring that it seemed like more fun anyway! with a breeze occasionally pushing its way in as people entered. Apparently, we got there at just the right time, because right after that, plenty of people jostled for a place to wait to be seated while we smugly planted our behinds in our bar stools.
Our waitress was super friendly and seemed amused by our palpable excitement; I was excited to finally be back in POB (the addiction had taken hold, you see, from my first time), and FeistyMom, who goes to Maine every August for Lobster Fest, and has eaten lobster rolls at Red’s (arguably the best lobster rolls in the country, according to NYT and various other sources) numerous times, was keen on finally having not just a lobster roll in NYC, but one that had been declared the best in the city.
We started off with Stewart’s root beer, yum! (not a lot of restaurants in NYC have this available) and a half-dozen Malpec oysters. I told FeistyMom they were all for her, but I wound up eating two because they were just that fresh and yummy. The apple cider vinegar with shallots was a big hit; I should tell you that FeistyMom has been known to tear it down at oyster bars. She’s eaten, in one sitting [at a trusted buffet place in Queens, with my older sister], a dozen and a half oysters. Not a big deal? She also ate other stuff. Seriously. FeistyMom can eat.
But on to the main event: we each ordered a lobster roll.
I know a lot of people were amused/amazed that I ate my entire lobster roll without putting it down last time, and without using a knife/fork combo, but you know what? FeistyMom chowed down the same way: without putting it down once. She commented, “I’m afraid it might fall apart if I put it down!” to which I replied enthusiastically, “Me too!!!” (Again, I didn’t put it down, and just kept eating!)
(she just may kill me for posting this picture…)
The verdict, however, remained to be seen. I didn’t want to rush her, so I waited until she was done before asking eagerly, “So? How does it compare to Red’s???”
FeistyMom paused before finally saying, “They’re different.” I had to press her gently, until she finally said, “They both have a lot of lobster meat, so that’s good- I think it’s a whole lobster in each. Red’s is less mayonnaise, you can see the lobster more clearly, but POB is also good. POB is much more expensive, but that’s because they have to import it, so it’s good, and I don’t have to travel as far to get it. I like it.”
So, there you have it: they’re different. Both good in their own ways, and both satisfying, FeistyMom would definitely go to POB once again. If I bring her, that is.
Of course, having enjoyed it so much last time, and come on, how often will I be taking FeistyMom here, anyway? I insisted that we split a butterscotch praline parfait. And of course, FeistyMom insisted she was full, wouldn’t eat more than a few bites, I had to eat the rest, blah, blah, blah… but FeistyMom betrayed herself when she proceeded to eat all of the nuts, then put her spoon down and declare herself seriously full. 😉
All in all, a great night (I proceeded to take her to Rockefeller Center to see the tree, we wandered around and saw someone propose on the ice [she accepted], and it was a delicious night despite the rain) for both of us. I leave you with this picture, graciously taken by our waitress at Pearl Oyster Bar.
A terrible picture of me, but our smiles speak for themselves: we are stuffed with good food and happy. That is what family means!
Have a safe holiday and a happy new year, okay? I’ll be back after the long weekend with pictures of my long anticipated dinner party!!! Happy Eating!!!