Jeff and I had a big day of bumming around. Bumming around is Chin family lingo for shopping/errands/hanging out/getting a snack somewhere. It felt like we went all around the town: to Soho, then east, then west, then up again, and by the time we were done wandering around downtown, we were ready for a snack. But what to eat? Dumplings were a possibility. So was a SuperHeeb sandwich from Russ and Daughters, a venerable Lower East Side kind of deli. So was a sandwich from Despaña, with it's divine imported serrano ham.
In the end, though, we spotted a Pain Quotidien, and decided to go there.
Le Pain Quotidien, no matter where you might be, has long, communal tables and cheery service. It's the kind of place that has breakfast pastries all day long, as well as tartines (open faced sandwiches), a variety of different coffee drinks, soups, quiches, and salads. The space is large and light, and has a very convivial atmosphere.
Granted, their fare isn't the best. It's never exactly what you want, and is kind of overpriced. But today, Jeff and I shared the Tuscan Platter, which consisted of four slices of homemade bread, olive tapenade, pesto, divine fresh ricotta cheese, a few sun-dried tomatoes and salad, two slices of melon, and two generous slices of prosciutto. With two cafés au lait, it was just the perfect pick-me-up from walking around in the chilliness that is Lower Manhattan.
Le Pain Quotidien
100 Grand St.
New York, NY 10013
(also worldwide locations)