I am basically letting my desk and email box just pile up for the next few days.  Fred and I have taken in three movies in two days, two delicious meals and one museum.  Today is another day.

We saw Hugo and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close on day one.  Hugo is amazing.  I read the book Extremely Loud and absolutely loved it.  They did a great job with the movie.  Both movies revolve around a key and hope for a message from each young boys lost parent although completely different films.  The young boys, Thomas Horn (ELIC) and Asa Butterfield (Hugo) were amazing.

We stopped into Gotham Bar and Grill for dinner and sat at the bar.  I love that the bartender has been there for fifteen years.  The decor could use a bit of a makeover but the food is always good.  I think of Gotham as one of those restaurants, like Union Square Cafe, that changed the way we eat food at restaurants.  The seafood salad is a classic and it is still piled high.

I also had the miso marinated cod which was delicious.  BTW, after all these years the restaurant was packed.

Day two began looking for a car.  We tried that on day one too with little success.  Day two was successful and by the time all our kids are driving we will need a serious parking lot.  After car shopping we had lunch at Via Quadronno.  I love this place for lunch.  Located on E 73rd between Madison and Fifth.  It is like going to Italy for a quick bite.  Always packed with locals.

We had made the "journey" uptown to see the Maurizio Cattelan exhibit.  A must.  The installation is brilliant and the Guggenheim was the perfect spot to show his work.  Amazing.

It was really nice out so we walked down to the Paris movie theater.  Have not been to the Paris in years but another classic institution on the UES.  We saw the Artist.  Very clever, another theme among the movies we have seen.  Washed up artist (Hugo and the Artist).  The entire movie is shot in black and white with no sound.  It is like watching an old film of the past.  Not so sure how much I loved it but certainly appreciated how clever it was. 

Last stop was Marea.  Yes, quite a journey being uptown and even eating up there too!  Marea is a gem.  Incredible customer service, beautiful decor, a feeling of elegance and everyone is dressed up.  We weren't but Marea is definitely a place to go and treat yourself. This is my second time back and certainly will not be my last. We began with a flight of crudo.

But the best thing, and the signature dish is the fusilli with red wine braised octopus and bone marrow.  It is insanely decadent and divine.  Still dreaming about this pasta this morning. We also split a whole branzino roasted in sea salt.  Perfect.  A worthy journey uptown.

Next couple days should we filled with more movies and an eventual clean up my desk before the new year begins. 

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Comments (Archived):

  1. awaldstein

    Enjoy and a happy new year to you and your family.

  2. William Mougayar

    It sounds like a great way to wind down. Gotham Bar & Grill is one of our favorites. They are so consistent there. I recall their house-made bread basket assortment was amazing. Best wishes for the New Year! 

  3. kirklove

    Staycations are the best. Lili and I did that last Christmas after our flight was canceled due to the huge storm we had. I think it resulted in a daughter. Ha.The fusilli at Marea = best dish in town IMO. That paired with their house Barolo is as close to food perfection as you’ll get.Glad you enjoyed your trip to the suburbs.

  4. Rohan

    Happy new year Joanne! 🙂 Interviewing you was one of the highlights of the year.. thanks a lot! 🙂

  5. Tracey Jackson

    Happy New Year GG!  

  6. Steven

    Ah, The Artist – watching it was like the first time I ate Pop-Rocks – the fizzy explode in your mouth candy – both new and old making my now middle aged taste buds unsullied but I could not quite figure it out and then it came to  me in the middle of the night (I had a dream) that the Artist’s reluctance to  speak – and the movie as a whole —  can be understood in terms of inhibition. Like an inhibition, it’s a mystery (to us and very probably to him as well)  whether he won’t speak or can’t speak. Remember when his wife confronts him? – “Why won’t you talk?” It’s not clear if she means talk to her or talk on film – we certainly think of both — which helps us see that  he’s stymied by issues beyond  cinematic technique.  In the early part of the movie he’s purely in love with himself, and the film does a good job keeping us from disliking him despite his vanity. In the first scene, he upstages his co-star when they’re taking their bows. He ignores his wife, and he sort of gutters out whenever he’s not in the public eye. I think one of the reason he’s given the dog (and his driver) is to help humanize him, give him a relationship with someone.I don’t usually think in these terms, and I’m not pandering to the shrinks among Gotham Gal readers when I say that he makes me think of an infant that just expects to be showered with love without doing anything. And the whole beginning of the movie operates at that fantasy level. Peppy Miller just has to show up at an audition to be instantly made a star. There’s no gap between wish and fulfillment.The scene  where Peppy caresses herself through the sleeve of the  Artist’s coat is a vivid image, and critique,  of the kind of magical self-love that both buoys and isolates the two of them. And it does isolate them because, although they’re clearly destined for each other they can’t get together. Or won’t. Their relationship with each other has the same stymied quality as the Artist’s can’t/won’t relationship to the prospect of speaking in the movies.I think their self-love saddles them with inhibitions because like all extreme self-love it’s terribly vulnerable. It can only exist if protected from certain inner shames and doubts and from real or imagined external threats. He’s afraid to hazard his self-love by trying something new – a new way to perform, a new woman. He wants to, but can’t or won’t.The end is such a pleaser because it overthrows all inhibition for both of them, and the inhibitions of the form as well. Suddenly we have, for the first time, a full sound stage, syncopated music with drums up front, and their wonderful, completely uninhibited dancing. And they’re dancing together, of course.  I think we respond to the movie because it embodies the structure and feeling of inhibition over  90 minutes and then gloriously releases it. It feels true and moving because it’s built out of primal stuff —  our own  experiences of, and attitudes toward,  early self-love, inhibition, and adulthood. Fizzy stuff.

  7. Zuhairah Scott

    I love this post! QT with the hubby, disconnecting and spending time with family is what the holidays is all about! Happy New Year!

    1. Gotham Gal

      added the girl with the dragon tattoo to the movie list yesterday. really well done!

  8. John Revay

    Car Shopping – Did you end up seeing any thing you liked – I saw that Fred posted a comment on Jig/twitter the other day asking for feedback on what cars have good Bluetooth audio streamingOwning and parking multiple cards in NYC – it has to be a real pain

    1. Gotham Gal

      we got a bmw. the problem with most of these cars, at least i find, is they are trying to reinvent the wheel when it comes to the user interface of music and navigation. the bmw seemed to make the most sense. some of them were just god awful.

  9. leeschneider

    Disappointed you got a car.  Always assumed Gotham Gal was some sort of super hero that flew and/or levitated.  🙂

    1. Gotham Gal

      ha. i wish!

  10. Cwacey

    I was at GBG last week too–and, also had the miso cod–it had been a while since I have been–but, I plan to go back soon!Feliz Complianos!xo