June 13, 2006

Failed Doughnut Plant Trip Ends at Schiller's

Doughnuts are one of my other obsessions, and I'd been dying to try out the Doughnut Plant for months now. With all the mild spring (?) weather we've been having Marc and I decided it was time to give it a shot.

The Lower East Side still fascinates me. It's so small but takes so long to get to where you want to be. The Doughnut Plant neighborhood reminded me a lot of Brooklyn in its dirtiness (but places like Thor and Teany kept me from forgetting which borough I was in).

During the half-hour walk, one of us wondered whether or not the plant would be sold out of their precious doughy wares by 5 p.m. on a Monday. "A Monday? Who eats doughnuts on a Monday?" Turns out I was right. The Plant is open every day of the week except Monday. We were a bit tired from the walk, so we weren't too upset. We'll be back, Doughnut Plant.

But in the meantime, Marc was beginning to complain of hunger. I'd seen that we passed Schiller's Liquor Bar, so we started back North for some drinks and food. Schiller's is a pretty awesome place - a look in-between a barber shop and an old timey soda fountain place. The prices for food and drinks, standard and specialty, were about average for the hipness.

After bread and olive oil was served, Marc, Derek and I made our orders - a Pimm's Cup with a mozzarella and tomato sandwich on toasted country bread for me, a Raspberry Bramble and a decent burger for Marc, and a frozen margarita with a Cuban sandwich for Derek.

First, the drinks. The Pimm's Cup tasted similar to the Strawberry Fields Meg got at Barmarche, which is to say it was summery in its sweet cucumber-ness. I forget what exactly was in this pimms cup, but I could taste the vegetal notes of the cucumber and mint as well as some sweetness or lemon flavor. Marc's Raspberry Bramble surprised me. I fully expected a overpoweringly sweet/tart girly raspberry drink, but the bramble was subtle and nuanced. It came layered with a combination of gin, chamboard, and something that made the gin cloudy. Oh, and it had the obligatory frozen raspberry. And, finally, Derek's cheap[er] frozen margarita tasted like it was supposed to.

The food was similarly good. Marc's burger wasn't anything terribly special, but my tomato/mozzarella sandwich and Derek's Cuban were quite good. The highlights of mine were the freshness of the ingredients (basil pesto sauce nearly dripped on me a number of times, but that's forgivable) and the lightly toasted country bread - I hate when toast rips the roof of my mouth apart. Marc said his fries tasted homemade, and Derek enjoyed the spicy pickles on his sandwich.

To top it off, a waiter came by and offered us some free doughnuts (they must have been getting ready for dinner). The cinnamon-sugar doughnuts were medium-light in density and temporarily satisfied my doughnut desire.

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Special thanks to dgphilli over at Flickr for the photo.

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