Friday, we drove into New York for a party at Nancy and Joel's in honor of Marissa's graduation from UVM and Ali's graduation from Dalton. It was a lovely party at their home, with the Hirschtritt's' friends, the kids' friends, Bess, Gilda and Sam and their kids, Vivian and David and Pearl. Nancy served Chicken Marbella (with prunes--a Miami Beach favorite), a fabulous poached salmon, and several unbelievable cakes and cheesecakes, which she made herself. Joel opened a Jerobaoam of Veuve Cliquot champagne. He made a most gracious and generous toast to both kids, saying how proud their father would have been of them, and how lucky he himself is to be the recipient of two such fine kids.
Saturday morning, Carol and I went to...where else? Barney Greengrass. The tomatoes were not as good as last time, and the whitefish portion was a bit smaller, but it's still the very best breakfast in New York. Carol went to B'nai Jeshurun while I caught up on some work. In the afternoon, we went to see John Leguizamo's one-man show, "Freak." He tells the story of his life, a Latino immigrant, the son of an abusive, punitive father and an ineffectual bizarre mother. Like so many comedians, he endures and rises above his misery with wit, humor, and creativiy. It's not possible to describe what a great entertainer he is. You are laughing every minute, and then suddenly your eyes fill with tears.
From the theatre, we went to Vivian and David's apartment on the 19th floor on the East River at 92nd Street. It is luxurious and spacious, with breathtaking views of the river and Queens. David got a new Yamaha upright piano with a superb tone. You can also silence the hammers and listen to it over headphones, and it sounds like a Steinway Concert Grand. They served some great wine, especially a Montepulciano, with wonderful grape leaves, dates, olives, artichokes.
Then, on to dinner around the corner with the Spinats, Hirschtritts, and Bess at "Around the Corner," right around the corner from the apartment, owned by Eli Zabar, who had a fight with his brother, who owns the Zabar's on the West Side. The women had some superb snapper, the men had rib steak. The salad had greens that tasted as though they had been picked within the hour. The bread was the best part--Eli's bread. I put two rolls in my pocket for breakfast the next morning. The wine was Rabbit Ridge Zinfandel (a great wine at a great price) and an Eberle Viognier--floral. Then on to Nancy's to finish up her desserts.
Home Sunday to see Paula Vogel's "How I Learned
to Drive" at Trinity Rep. It was Trinity at its best. Great play, great
direction, great acting, great peformance in every way.