Saturday, April 25, 2009

Guess Who's Bizack?????????

Scarface ft. Jay-z & Beanie Sigel- Guess Who's Back

Talk to me man...

Guess who's bizack...Still smell the shells on my clothes.

Awwwwwwwww yeaaaaaaaaaaaah.

They're back baby. And I'm heading to BK to get my eat on. What??? Brooooklyn?!?!?!? Yeah- it is what it is. Howfresh, hipsters and crawdizzles live at Flatbush Farm. Farms in BK? Ho-Lee Shit. Like I'm going to a kibbutz that doesn't keep Kosher. Lovely.

Crawdad season is in effect and I've yet to take advantage of the little critters. Not one mention of Mara's. Craziness. The idea of an outdoor crawfish boil during the first official week of summer- anything over 80° is summer- is a divine gift. Angels, cherubs and prophets snapping tails and sucking crawfish brains. The idea of going to BK hasn't even dawned on me. I'm so focused man. Check me out- practicing my Brooklynese.


The jumpoff will begin to jump at 4pm at Flatbush Farm located on St. Mark's between 6th Ave. and Flatbush. See below for detailed info. It is not an all you can eat. I was told that plates will be served ranging from $6 to $8. I'm just hoping that they're generous with the mudbugs.

Per the Flatbush Farms website:

Crawfish Boil
Sunday April 26th 4PM - 7PM

Chef Browning cooks up a Louisiana-style Crawfish Boil, Sunday April 26th, 4PM - 7PM, outside on the patio: crayfish, corn, potatoes, and assorted creole and southern delights.

It's not even May and the party has already begun.

Flatbush Farm
76 St. Marks Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11217
FARM hours
Mon - Thurs, 5:30 - 11pm
Fri - Sat, 5:30pm - Midnight
Sat - Sun, 10:30am - 3pm
Mon - Fri, 11:30am - 3pm

View Larger Map

Friday, April 24, 2009

H is for Hip Hop- Spring Time Concerts.

A letter H post is long overdue. Don't they look so nice together? Since Hip Hop has 2 H's it's only right to double up. I've been meaning to do a concert write-up for a while- problem was there really wasn't/isn't much out there. One of the best shows is tomorrow night- Heltah Skeltah with special guests at 92Y Tribeca. The show of shows will be Cam at Highline Ballroom on May 4th. Sold out but I'll try to manage something. One or two decent joints lined up to usher in the summer- a lot of R&B joints, too many in fact, and in hindsight I have no clue why I referenced so many- fuck it- not really my thing but to each their own. Brooklyn Hip Hop Festival just announced that Styles P, Pharoahe Monch and Smif N Wessun will be performing on June 20th at Fulton Ferry State Park under the Brooklyn Bridge. "The Life" live will be some shit. Will try to provide links for many of the shows tomorrow. Shows are in chronological order.

Heltah Skeltah, RA The Rugged Man, Craig G, Shabaam Sadeeq, Torae, Mr. Metaphor and Bekay- Lyricist Lounge Presents The Foundation Album Release Showcase- 92Y Tribeca- Saturday 4/25/09, 10 pm- $12

Milano of DITC affiliation with various other artists- Bowery Poetry Club- 308 Bowery between Houston St. and Bleeker St.- Saturday 4/25/09, 10 pm- $10

Milano- Deal With A Feeling

Stay In School Concert featuring Soulja Boy & Jim Jones
- Real Talk, True Story, No Bullshit...- Westchester County Center- White Plains- Saturday 4/25/09, 8 pm- $30 - $40

Craig G, Lord Finesse & Afrika Bambaataa- Lyrical Fusion- Southpaw- Sunday 4/26/09, 9 pm- $15 Adv., $20 Day of

Del The Funkee Homosapien in "The Funkman Tour" ft. Mike Relm , Bukue One and Serendipity Project- BB King's- Wednesday 4/29/09, 8 pm- $15 Adv., $20 Day of

The Roots Present the Jam (special guests every week)- Highline Ballroom- Wednesday 4/29/09, 11 pm- $10 Adv.- Weekly residence- future dates include 5/5, 5/13, 5/18, 5/26, 6/2, 6/10, 6/16/, 6/23, 7/1/, 7/8, 7/22, 7/29 (These sell out quick so cop ASAP)

Amel Larrieux- BB King's- Thursday 4/30/09, 8 pm- $27 Adv., $30 Day of

Ray-J with Funk Flex on the Tables- Friday 5/1/09 at Midnight- $25

Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings- Part of Dark was the Night Live- Radio City Music Hall- Sunday 5/3/09- $38 - $58

Cam'Ron- Crime Pays Album Release Party hosted by Funk Flex- Highline Ballroom- Monday 5/4/09, 9 pm- $20 Adv., $22 Door- Website says SOLD OUT

Boyz II Men- BB King's- Thursday & Friday 5/7-8/09, 8 pm- $38.50 Adv., $40 Day of

Mayer Hawthorne
- American Museum of Natural History- Friday 5/8/09, 9 pm- $20

Mayer Hawthorne- Maybe So, Maybe No

En Vogue Re-United for Mother's Day- BB King's- Sunday 5/10/09, 9 pm- $32.50 Adv., $35 Day of

Guru ft. Solar & The 7 Grand Players- SOB's- Wednesday 5/13/09, 9 pm- $20 Adv., $25 Day of- Just can't muster up the interest

Black Star- Nokia Theater- Saturday 5/30/09, 8:30 pm (with 88 Keys) and 11:30 pm- $39.50

Nikki D Hosts Ladies Love the Breaks, A Tribute to Hip Hop & Autism Awareness Fundraiser- Thursday 6/4/09, 9 pm- $15 or $10 @

Hot 97 Summer Jam- Young Jeezy, T Pain, Mary J. Blige, Jadakiss, Jim Jones, Juelz and more- Giants Stadium- Sunday 6/7/09, 6:30 pm- $40 & Up

Collie Buddz- BB King's- Friday 6/12/09, 11:30 pm- $18 Adv., $22 Day of

5th Annual Brooklyn Hip Hop Festival- Styles P, Smif N Wessun, Pharoahe Monch and more- Saturday 6/20/09- Fulton Ferry State Park under the Brooklyn Bridge- $10 suggested admission

Style P ft. Pharoahe Monch- The Life

Q-Tip- Central Park Summerstage- Saturday 7/18/09, 3 pm- FREE

Yankee Stadium Part II- After All that Food I Had to Walk it Out, Walk It Out...

Yankees walk it out, HowFresh walk it out, Lonn Trost walk it out, B-X walk it out, Big Papi whine and pout...

An added bonus to the HowFresh Eats Food Derby was getting to see the entire stadium. One must travel far and wide to attain certain delicacies. This provided me with an opportunity to view the game through a variety of vantage points and gain a deep knowledge of what the stadium has to offer- a true resume builder. WARNING: There is no food in this post.

After all that MSG and sodium I had no choice but to walk it out. Not Kurt Warner status however. I can't begin to tell you how uncomfortable that footage makes me.

As mentioned in HowFresh Eats Yankee Stadium, you are free to roam all over. And it appears that as long as your not blocking the walkway or entrance to the section, and not being an inconsiderate jerk, you can loiter as long as you please. It was bugged- every time a Burn's Security member came near we got shook- as if we were doing something wrong. So if you're high up below the overhang on the 1st base side and want to catch some rays- you know how I do- just mosey on over to the 3rd base side in the 300s section and hang out behind the handicapped section. You won't be able to tan it up on the main/box level since the concourse is completely covered. The bleacher concourse area provides some prime time SPF 15 though. Shit, I need that 30 or 45, but sometimes you need a good burn to set the table. Cops were hanging out and not saying a word to anybody standing behind the seats. What a plush job.

Having sat in section 209 and 314, I can say that leg room is far better here than the old stadium. I don't recall bumping my knees off the chair directly in front and definitely didn't kick anybody. Last year- Tier MVP box 615 in section 7- I stayed kneeing this woman in the back of the head all season. I stopped apologizing after a while because there was really nothing you could do to avoid it. Maybe she should have kept her head in check. A true bobblehead.

The bathrooms in the 300s were smaller and more crowded than the field level. Makes sense since nobody's sitting down there. But the bathrooms were huge down there- maze status. 2 separate areas with urinals- reminded me of a large airport. And there are dividers down low, unlike in the 200s and 300s. You pay extra money so that nobody will look at your dork. Money has its privileges. Unless you're into that shit.

The smokers are still getting their puffs in. I didn't see anybody catching tokes on the ramps- I see you Pops- but apparently the restroom is where the non-athletic badboys congregate. Damn Lonn, I thought you would have put banning this high up on the totem pole. I notice all the efforts to keep it green- well what about my lungs? I know green is a secondary color while yellow is primary- and I can see how you might think getting yellow lungs is somehow associated with being green, but you are incorrect. Honestly, I didn't smell any smoke at either game. The stadium must have a great ventilation system.

One would think that since Bank of America is a premier sponsor at the stadium, ATM machines would be aplenty. WRONG. I believe I saw 4 or 5 and based on the 2009 Fan Guide there are 7 in the stadium. With a full house that comes out to about 1 ATM per 7500 fans, and that's laaaaaame. We all know those numbers are a bit inflated since the Yanks don't sell out anymore, but still. How difficult is it to have 4 per level? Yankee fans can be dirtbags, but not brazen enough to crack an ATM open during the game. Personally, I charge it to the game- every concession I went to accepted Credit Cards- but for those with terrible credit history it can be a problem as exhibited by my boy in the 200s section. With only 1 ATM in the entire section- around homeplate heading towards 3rd base- it took him close to half an hour to get loot and then attempt to get some food. Knowing where it is now, piece of cake, but if you're not armed with the knowledge you're fucked. Ironically, the Upper Decks (300s) have 3 ATMs. They love making the working man bleed and spend that hard earned cash. They figure you got over on us with that cheap ticket so you better spend that shit. If you're unable to get cash in advance and don't have credit cards, you can re-up in the following sections: 128, 222,313,320C, 330, 239 and near the Guest Services Booth near Gate 6 (entrance closest to 161st and River). I cannot promise that they will be operable.

Walking from field level to the grandstand was much longer and way more arduous than expected. Shit just kept going. Like I was on the Beartooth Highway with all the switchbacks. And the air got thinner. All I kept thinking of was whether my parents would be able to make the trek to the heavens. Wet behind the ears, I didn't realize there were elevators available to all ticketholders. There are 8 elevators behind sections 214-216 and 314 to 316, all letting out in the Great Hall between Gates 4 and 6. The elevators have an attendant so if you have that claustrophobia issue be comforted in knowing that an expert is manning the vessel. The elevators say a capacity of 40 or so but one of the attendants said he keeps it around 25 so not to make the ride uncomfortable. Reminds me of the 168th and 181st Street 1 train elevators.

Screens and speakers are in abundance. They caught a truck and sucked it dry. Throughout the entire Main level there are flat screens and speakers suspended everywhere. It's great to see close/confrontational calls which aren't shown on the 103 foot monster screen (that thing is a beast- amazingly clear). After a close call during the 4/17 game I heard boos and had no clue where they were coming from. Then I looked up and saw the replay and realized they were reacting to that. On the other levels screens are positioned all along the walls and by the concessions. You will not miss anything. I don't recall seeing any screens in the bathrooms. Unlike the old stadium with the garbled sound, everything is clear. Low though- I found myself not being able to hear certain things, especially the at-bat tracks for several players. None of that heavy bass anymore courtesy of the Giambino.

Below are views from all over the stadium. They are all from public areas where your ticket doesn't matter. Find the view you like so next time you're in the stadium you can mark it off early. We're about to get territorial in this bitch. Some photos used zoom so you might not be as close as it shows. As always, click on image for a more detailed view.

1st Base Field Level.

Left Field View Behind Foul Pole.

Right Field Behind Bleachers. (a lot of space out there- Boardy Barn status)

3rd Base Field Level - Yes during YMCA. The grounds crew should do a little Lean Back during the 5th. Fat Joe is from the BX and that beat would get the crowd HYPED.

1st Base UD Field View.

View of stands from section 209. Who can spot the empties and calculate the value of those seats?

View of Great Hall looking West. Legends are in black and white from this angle. When looking East players are more current and in color.

Piece of Shit.

Left Field UD view of diamond. (great area for sun)

Behind Home plate Field Level.

Center Field Concessions view towards home- first time you have a chance to see Mo hit the mound.

View of Right Field bleachers from Center Field Concession area.

Exit on 162nd and River- the exits are large and this exit is great. No crowds and a close walk to your parked car in the upper 160s or to the subway by McDonalds. No more of that overcrowded subway exit on the corner.

Tables and chairs on Main Level behind Homeplate and by Press/Media area.

Captain Clutch- the HR that led to the first win at the new stadium.

Jerks. Anybody wearing an A-Rod jersey and anybody that puts a name on a Yankee jersey. Show, don't tell.

3rd Base Field Levels- Looked empty but was told that the Invisibles were there and having a better time than me.


View of Subway from LF Upper Deck. (I'm a mini train buff)

161st Subway Station.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

HowFresh Eats the New Yankee Stadium.

Yes I did. Before we start I'd like to give a special thanks to Buckemdown Inc. for providing the funding for this study. Without their generosity none of this would be possible. I'd also like to express my gratitude to DBD Co. for providing the Opening Day Pt. 2 seats- it was the Yankees first home victory so that's number 1- right? Indeed. If you hate food and prefer a non-gastronomical take on the stadium click HERE.

I tried to eat as much as I could. For the places I didn't get to or just wasn't interested in I have provided photos of the counters and menus, most at least. Click on the images to get a much clearer view- prices and calorie counts are on each menu. Do you really want to know you're calorie intake at a game? Not one bit. Let me get my fat fuck on on some ignorance is bliss shit. The ball field is an escape from reality- let's keep it that way.

The best thing about the new stadium is that while you're getting your grub you are still part of the game. The open concession areas and the numerous amount of TV screens keep you involved at all times. 880 AM is pumped through the airwaves so you have no choice but to listen. A complete turnaround from the old stadium when you'd never want to leave your seats risking missing that go ahead hit or great catch. When I wrote about the segregationist policies being practiced by the Yanks, that was clearly before experiencing it. From what I felt and saw, it couldn't be farther from the truth. You have free reign everywhere- aside from the private bars, but who wants to be inside on a beautiful day- that shit is for the birds. Get the cheapest seat possible, walk around, and park yourself behind the box seats, out in center field above the bleachers, or just about any place you choose- as long as you don't dare try to sit in an empty seat. You will get handled with quickly and sternly.

On to the food...

The first dish I tried, and coincidentally the best, was the Moe's Southwest Grill Billy Barou Nachos for $9. A generous portion of crisp nachos topped with a very well flavored ground beef, salsa, a white cheese sauce, olives, jalapenos, sour cream and guacamole- many are optional so choose as you please. The dish is messy but after a bite or 2 you don't mind getting your fingers dirty. Just watch the white pinstriped jersey. I made the mistake of not covering up and now it needs a mean clean. In 2 trips to the stadium this has been ordered 4 times. Available at the La Esquina Latina located on the field concourse by the right field foul pole and at the various Moe's stands throughout the stadium- by section 211 and there is one in the 300s.

Feeling Latin at la Esquina Latina I had to try the Cuban Sandwich. My expectations were low, but I do this for you. This is one stop Latin food shopping, Mexican, Cuban and for my PR and DR bredren they got Utz plantain chips. That's it though. They need to step it up. The sandwich wasn't that good but far from offensive. Ham, swiss, pickle and a thick slice of either chicken or pork, I wasn't sure. It surely wasn't roast pork, which usually is needed in a Cuban. The roll had a mass production feel- very fast foody. Fuck it. One and done. Won't be ordering again.

Next to the La Esquina Latina is the Garlic Fries stand. Shit sounded good. Ordered a small for $5. The quality of the fry was better than average- crisp and soft in the middle. Didn't seem like they were frozen but I don't know. Way OD on the garlic. After a fry or 2 that was more than enough. No interest in ordering again. I did notice the chicken fingers there and they looked GOOD. Way better than the ones at the old stadium. Bigger and the batter looked official. Next time.

A drink break is needed. Soft drinks and domestic (read: shit) beers are available at close to all concessions. I don't drink soda but a Souvenir Cup Mountain Dew is what I do in the stadium. Close to a liter of the neon juice should have you more than hopped up. There are several beer vendors offering a decent variety of imported bottles with several on tap. Bottles will run you $8.50, but wisen up- for an additional $2.50 you can get a 24 oz. draft of either Stella Artois, Beck's, Heineken or Guiness. It's simple mathematics, you got to love it... Problem was that half the kegs were out at 3 of the beer spots we hit. Go early and go often. Remember that beer gets cut in the middle of the 7th. I didn't and was caught with the buzz needing that little push to the next level. And let me warn you now about $11 drafts at the Hard Rock with pushy little waitresses.

Who eats Chinese food at a baseball game? Howfresh does apparently. I needed to just to say I did. And I saw a wok. I saw a wok in Yankee Stadium. And it was being used. By an Asian person. A real Asian person. The Yankees aren't playing around. I probably get a kick out of it way more than anybody else. The Noodle Bowl is located by 3rd base on the field level.

Ordered the dumplings (4 for $6) and the Chicken Pan Fried Noodle Bowl ($8.50). The dumplings were the typical half moon doughy sort with a minced pork filling. Throw on some soy sauce and enjoy.

The noodle bowl was basically chicken lo mein but better. The noodles were al dente with small tender chunks of chicken and a variety of fresh vegetables- green and red peppers, broccoli and bok choy. Much better than expected. If you get the urge for some Chinese in the 5th inning go in. Since China and Japan are relatively close to each other on the globe, the sushi stand bordered the Noodle Bowl. I would have gotten some sushi, again just to say I did, but I had to fall back after being told that every roll had sesame seeds in it. Wasn't trying to risk an allergic reaction. They didn't look that special. These stands are next to the Yankees food court- an open area with tables where you can eat your food and catch the game on one of the many screens or watch the traffic on Jerome Ave. Really dope. Boar's Head, Carvel, and Mike's Arthur Ave. Deli are also in the area.

The sushi menu.

The final meal of the day was a Lobel's USDA Prime Beef Steak Sandwich ($15) about 100 feet up the foul line past the Asian Persuasion. Tender and juicy slices of top quality steak on a fresh cheese bun. No gristle whatsoever. 50 feet from the stand is a window showing Lobel (not sure which one since they've been in business for 150 plus years) himself cutting steaks. If the Yankees are losing by 20 runs then watching a dude cut steak behind glass might be more appealing. For $15 you might expect a bigger sandwich, but relative to what else is in the stadium, definitely one of the highlights.

While I enjoyed most of what I ate, aside from the nachos, I don't know if I'd go out of my way to eat any of it again. My MO is getting a sandwich at the Banana Deli on 161st St. by the stadium for $5 and enjoying it during the early innings and then getting something else. If you prefer you can hit the Boar's Head counter at the Stadium and shell out $12 for a sandwich. Fuck that. That $7 can get you a beer or some Yankees wrist bands. Lately my sandwich of choice has been the Hot to Trot- blazing buffalo chicken with salsalito turkey on a roll with monterey jack cheese, horseradish sauce, lettuce and tomato (the second photo in the post). Originally it was named after Torre but you know how that goes. Support local businesses.

One of the longest lines in the entire stadium was the Popcorn, Indiana line. We all know how much I love Indiana, and I love Indiana, but I don't get it. Peep the photos below- the line goes past the steps. If anybody has an explanation, please share. If it was cold and the line was for hot chocolate, I get it. If it's boiling and people want a lemonade, I understand. But popcorn on a windy Sunday in April? No clue. Maybe I'm the weirdo that doesn't like popcorn.

Below are photos of what else is being cheffed up in the new confines. I will note that several attempts were made to get a hot pretzel but every time we asked for one the vendor said they weren't warm yet. This happened at least 4 times. In terms of other items, I've had Carl's numerous times at both the stadium and at their stores in the city. They offer a fine cheesesteak and are a safe choice. Never had Mike's Deli in the stadium but have eaten it on Arthur Ave.- official cold cuts. Johnny Rockets doesn't excite me. Would much rather have some Shake Shack but the other team snatched them up first. Brother Jimmy's has several stands- one wasn't operating as of Sunday. Another spot not on my to-eat list. Nathan's are all over the stadium- a very good dog, as are Hebrew Nationals. Holla. For Part II including more pics and info click HERE.

Jeter, the Mick and the Gator.