Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Meatballs with Martha Stewart

A few weeks ago I found out I had 2 tickets to the Martha Stewart Show which I was super excited about since I am a fan of the Martha. My husband and I decided to make it our first trip away from our son. Oh the anxiety! We'd only be gone for a night and only in New York so as the day approached I became a little more relaxed.
We stayed at Fashion 26 which is a great location if you are coming in from out of town for the Martha Stewart Show (or anything at the Garden).  The rooms were small, but not uncomforatable. Clean, modern, and very pleasant staff. I would stay here again, especially for the ease of location. There is a garage a few doors down that the hotel recommends for parking that is $40/24hrs, an extra $10 for SUVs.

It was Restaurant Week in NYC so we originally checked out restaurants that were participating. After talking with many friends and having many mouthwatering recommendations we wound up at Crema. They have an "Unhappy Hour" which has buy 1 get 1 wine by the glass and margaritas, but really you should go here for the Toquitos. Oh my gosh, 2 days later as I am writing this up I am still tasting and desiring those toquitos! The whole meal was awesome, we did not do their Restaurant Week menu, but those around us did and it looked awesome. Great meal. Great service. Great atmosphere.

We Enjoyed:

The Guacamole Combo
Toquitos de Chilorio
Ensalada de Pancita
Alambres de Filet Mignon
Pay du Nuez con Rompope
The Restaurant Week Dessert Banana Split

The next morning we went to Martha Stewarts Studios for the Meatball episode! Mmmmm..... Meatballs. 
It was snowing, a nice snow, in New York that morning and the cold snap from the day before was a distant memory. We took our place in the line, in the front of the line, sipped our coffee and watched others come and join. The doors opened and we received tickets 1 and 2 (there isn't a door prize that comes with it). We went into a room after checking our coats and security and filled out our release forms. Joey, Martha's trusted sidekick, came in and got the audience going (handing dollars to the men who looked like they were dragged there by their wives- thankfully my husband was not one of them) and told us that only 1 in approx 30 audiences actually gets to eat and we were one of those! We were going to try 3 of the meatballs from the show. Awesome. Breakfast.
We headed upstairs to the studio and they place you all over the studio, based on what you're wearing, etc so we were on the floor seats. Great for being close to Martha and right next to Joey, crummy for getting on tv or seeing what is going on in front of the cameras.

It was fun, my husband even laughed a few times. Martha was fantastically funny, whether on purpose or not. Everyone on the staff/interns are very nice. We ate "Tony's" meatball, a buffalo chicken meatball, and a ricotto stuffed meatball. All were fantastic! The buffalo chicken meatball will definitely be making an appearance at our house for the Super Bowl.

We came home with some goodies: The Frankies Spuntino Kitchen Companion and Cooking Manual and Frankies Olive Oil along with a Martha Stewart tote bag to keep it all in.

After the show we left New York and headed to Philadelphia for a cheesesteak. After much blackberry googling we wound up at Campo's on Market Street. It was a nice break in our drive and a perfect way to follow up having meatballs for breakfast. I had the classic cheesesteak cheese whiz and onions, where as my husband went a little bolder and had Extra Sharp Provolone on his. Whew. I smelled his hands the whole way home, and they smelled like New Jersey.

We took a walk after lunch down to the Liberty Bell. Apparently my husband has never seen it, so that was a must do. We then drove the rest of the way home and gave our kid a big hug. It was very nice to get away, but I missed that little guy.

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