The Grub Street Diet

Sloane Crosley Ingests Many Oysters, Drinks Unknown Quantities of Maker’s Mark on New Year’s

Crosley tempts fate with blistered peppers at Morandi.
Crosley tempts fate with blistered peppers at Morandi. Photo: Melissa Hom

Sloane Crosley, author of I Was Told There’d Be Cake, How Did You Get This Number, and the newly released Amazon Kindle Single called Up the Down Volcano, took a chance by giving Grub Street a glimpse of her eating life on what she’s pretty sure is “the slowest week of the year on all fronts.” Even still, the author, funny girl, and leader of the literati pack didn’t disappoint. Read about her cheese wheel, blistered peppers, and “non-deplorable” New Year’s Eve party in this week’s New York Diet. Or, as Sloane says, “Let the verbal colonoscopy commence.”

Friday, December 30
For breakfast I ate a slice of Nature’s Path’s redundantly dubbed Manna Bread. I spread almond butter on it. I went to the gym and got a coffee from the little Irving Farm on Seventh Avenue. They always have a trivia quiz up on a dry-erase board. Questions like, “Who founded Sprint?” The prize is “2 coffee card punches.” If I don’t know the answer, I spend my time in line wondering how much of an asshole it would make me if I looked up the answer on my phone.

I did research at the NYPL and was starving by the time I left, because you’re not really allowed to be human in the library, including the drinking of bottled water. So I got a green juice from One Lucky Duck, picked at leftovers from Kawa Sushi, and worked the rest of the afternoon.

I am going to be in California the second half of January, and my pal Starlee Kine is cat sitting. She came over to pick up keys, and we drank a bottle of Rioja and took my cheese cutter for a spin. Literally. You put a wheel of cheese on what’s essentially a record player with a knife. Then you crank the knife in circles and it shaves little dairy petals from the wheel. I saw it for the first time in France earlier this year and wouldn’t shut up about it until my sister tracked it down for me.

That night I went to Walter Foods in Williamsburg. I ate like someone about to write all this down: blue point oysters, carrot soup with chile oil, and a whole roasted trout.

Saturday, December 31
I got up early to work. I like to try to do a little work before I do anything in the morning, even if it’s a paragraph. I made coffee and ate Quinoa flakes with honey and raisins. It tastes okay, but it looks like gruel. I also had a handful of Barbra’s peanut butter puffins, dry, and some Brazil nuts. Pretty depressing last breakfast of 2011.

I went with a friend to see The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (a.k.a., David Fincher Wants to Make You Late for Everything). I drank Diet Coke and stress-ate popcorn. Then I sprinted to meet a radio producer in town from L.A. for just the night. We met at Morandi, my neighborhood standby. I’ll go there anytime so long as it’s not a weekend night. I dream about their lemon pasta and their blistered peppers. One out of every seven of those things will burn your face off and it’s impossible to identify the culprit until it’s too late.

The remainder of my New Year’s was non-deplorable. I went to a party at my friend Lockhart’s apartment near the South Street Seaport. I walked in to find him with a glove on one hand and a knife in the other, shucking fresh oysters. Then I headed to Brooklyn Bowl to see the very talented Deer Tick. I ate a giant oyster po boy (I eat a lot of oysters?) and the first of an unknown number of Maker’s Marks. George Burns said it best: “It takes only one drink to get me drunk. The trouble is, I can’t remember if it’s the 13th or the 14th.”

Sunday, January 1
Sometime around 5 a.m., I dropped fizzy vitamin C tablets in a glass of water, took a sip, forgot about it, and dumped it out in the sink a few hours later.

I walked to a friend’s house to watch football and the first season of Damages. I came bearing brunch ingredients: fruit, croissants, scrambled eggs with grilled tomatoes, Cheddar cheese, and hot peppers. The trick to scrambled eggs is to remove half the milk from the container and shake what’s left as hard as you can, like a cocktail shaker, before you whisk it into the eggs.

I went grocery shopping at Elm Health on the way home. I kept putting down the bags to take pictures for Sad Stuff on the Street. New Year’s Day is an orgy of sad street findings. For dinner, I tried to repent for the night before: I made a salad with grilled carrots and watched the Portlandia marathon on IFC. So what we’re looking at is a year of me eating foods that correspond with my television programming …

Monday, January 2
That was a pretty isolated marathon writing day. I drank some coconut water and went for a run. The city was still pretty abandoned — it was like The Stand out there. When I got home, breakfast was Manna Bread with almond butter, a pear, and coffee.

I worked until lunch, and then around two made myself a kale salad and reheated olive bread from the Grey Dog that I had tossed in my freezer. Grey Dog is on my block. If I’m feeling truly lazy, I’ll order out from there. Thus my freezer is filled with tons of these plastic-wrapped mini-loaves of bread that come with their salads. It looks like I’m a cereal killer. Get it? Because it’s bread.

Anyway. Someone was kind enough to send me a box of Maison du Chocolat chocolates over Christmas. I ate three of them, trying to get to the lemon-infused one. Apparently Maison du Chocolat is above charts.

I worked, stayed in, and made tempeh tacos (tempeh, marinade, grilled veggies) with corn salsa on the side. I love to bake, so I made vanilla bean and blueberry muffins for sick hospital children. Just kidding! All of that is true except the sick children part. See how it’s possible to look like a jerk in this situation? All I did was make some goddamn muffins and now it looks like I hate kids.

Tuesday, January 3
I ate one of the muffins I made/stole from children and got coffee at Irving Farm.

I had to do an interview (with me holding the recorder) at the Museum of Natural History, just blocks away from my old apartment, and so I took a nostalgia stroll that included picking up a chocolate-chip cookie at Levain. I wound up saving most of the cookie, as my stomach is of human-size proportions.

That took me straight into lunch with one of my favorite ladies, Rachel Antonoff, at the Smile. I had a radish and Bibb lettuce salad with avocado and a green tea, and we shared the brownies in cream.

Then I had to meet with an author whose book I’m editing. You know what they say: Why sit at a table that doesn’t have key lime pie on it if you don’t have to? So we met at Great Jones Cafe. I got a taste of my own tardiness medicine … so I ordered a lemonade and began a galley of my pal Christopher Beha’s new book, What Happened to Sophie Wilder.

I tried to write in the afternoon, but writing in the afternoon is like performing open-heart surgery drunk. Or so I’ve heard. I was also high on sugar. I headed out in the cold to a Very Official Post–New Year’s Recap Dinner with two of my dearest girlfriends at Lure Fishbar. I had edamame, grilled octopus salad with hazelnuts, a spicy toro belly roll, and a Riessling

Wednesday, January 4
I wrote in the morning and then had a meeting at Buvette — but only consumed a grapefruit juice and coffee because I was saving myself for a big lunch at Mas (la grillade). Sadly, it turned out the lunch in question wasn’t this week but next. So I made a hummus, tomato, and Swiss-cheese sandwich with mustard and worked until the afternoon. I also ate a York Peppermint Patty.

That evening I met Ken Friedman at the Breslin for a drink. As the attentive reader may have noticed by now, I don’t eat meat. The Breslin presents a bit of a challenge in that department, but the John Dory next door is a favorite. The oyster pan roast there is dreamy, as are the rolls. Still, again with the stupid oysters.

A friend had tickets to see Aziz Ansari and Amy Schumer at the Comedy Cellar, and so I went to that and didn’t eat … just drank beer.

Sloane Crosley Ingests Many Oysters, Drinks Unknown Quantities of Maker’s