The New York Diet

Alan Colmes Is Not a Vegetarian, Thank You Very Much

“They take great care of you” at Volare. Photo: Melissa Hom

Liberal commentator and “big pasta and shrimp fan” Alan Colmes isn’t surprised that John McCain recently hit up an Olive Garden in Florida. He tells us, “I have a hunch that John McCain probably poll-tested where he should eat and it probably came back Olive Garden — if he went to a more expensive and so-called ‘higher class’ place he probably would be called an elitist like he does to Barack.” Colmes will cover the Democratic convention in Denver next week, so does that mean he’ll have a good-bye dinner with co-host Sean Hannity? “Not without a food taster,” he says, though he admits that they share a love of Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse. “I’m a big steak fan,” Colmes says. “People would be surprised to know that I’m not a vegetarian.” Hmmm. So what other red-blooded American surprises did his diet include this week?

Saturday, August 16
Every morning I have an iced coffee and a bagel and cream cheese (sometimes I’ll have a chocolate muffin). The kind of food I like is very New York–centric. They can’t make bagels in other cities like they do here. It’s something about the water. Every deli owner says it’s how they make the bagel and how the water interfaces with the yeast.

I’m a big Romanian-steak fan. I had a skirt steak, which is the same thing, at the Ocean Park Diner in Long Beach. I’m also a big diner fan. I’m always amazed when I look at the huge menus — the places aren’t as big as the menus are. I don’t know where they keep the food.

Sunday, August 17
Again, I usually get a bagel with cream cheese every morning.

I ordered in Chinese food from Suzie’s on Bleecker Street. I got the Lake Tung Ting shrimp.

Monday, August 18
During the weekdays, I usually wake up around 8:30 a.m. and get a bagel from either Think Coffee on Mercer Street or I’ll get a muffin from Au Bon Pain. And I’m a big iced-coffee drinker. I actually drink it twelve months a year. It’s not always easy to find in the South or Midwest. If you ask for it in January or February they look at you like you’re from another planet.

For lunch I had a very small salad at a place near Fox called Evergreen, on 47th Street and Sixth Avenue.

I ate an early dinner at Volare — I had linguine with shrimp and a chopped salad. It’s great food and you can make anything you want — you don’t even have to order off the menu. They take great care of you there. Sal, the owner, and Falco, his partner, are very attentive to their customers — there’s a lot of repeat business because once people get hold of the place they never let go.

Tuesday, August 19
For lunch I had a toasted onion bagel with tuna salad. Most of my meals are ordering in. If you want to know what I had for lunch or dinner, look at my desk and you’ll see pieces of whatever food I had.

Sometimes you get so busy you forget to eat — it’ll be 3 p.m. or 4 p.m. and I get so caught up in work, especially if it’s a day of breaking news, that I’ll say, “Oh yeah, I have to eat something.” There are days I live to eat, but there are other days when you just grab stuff on the fly and you eat to live.

For dinner I ordered in — there’s a pasta place I order from a lot called Bella Napoli. They have a really good pasta and shrimp dinner.

Wednesday, August 20
Lunch was a bagel with egg salad from Evergreen.

For dinner I ordered a cheeseburger from Good Burger. They’re really good.

I do radio till 1 a.m. — when I get home, I’ll eat Planters peanuts and I’ll dip into a pint of ice cream. It tastes much better when you eat it right out of the carton. It’s got that freezer feel to it. I’m guilty of eating too many sweets. I’m a big chocoholic.

Thursday, August 21
I had a chocolate muffin for breakfast.

I had a bagel with tuna salad on it for lunch, and my future meals are to be determined.

The great thing about New York is, you can pick up the phone, wherever you are, and within five minutes you can get great Chinese food, great coffee-shop food, and you can find a restaurant that serves almost anything. You’re never going to go hungry with the variety of food. I heard a statistic once that you could eat at a different restaurant every day, every meal, for 43 years without repeating. Of course, I can’t verify that…

Alan Colmes Is Not a Vegetarian, Thank You Very Much