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Tuesday, August 22, 2006

The Appropriate Food : New Beef King Corporation

One of the reasons I love NYC is that you're pretty much guaranteed to find cool stuff just by wandering around. In this case, I noticed the New Beef King Corp. on the way from a first course of dim sum at Ping's Seafood to a second course of assorted breads and pastries at Le Pain Quotidian in Soho[1]

Although it wasn't on the day's menu[2], I decided to wing it. Beef jerky holds a special place in the hearts of hackers. Code is more or less made of junk food. While Twix and Dr. Pepper[3] can give you a burst of energy to get you through a rough spot, there's nothing like some concentrated essence of cow or pig to give you the endurance you need for a thirty-six hour coding marathon.

New Beef King is tiny, with room for only a few customers. Most of the space is taken up by two glass display cases, the kind normally used to show jewelry or high-end chocolates. As it was my first visit, I chose a quarter pound of the simplest item "Spicy Flavor Beef Jerky". The slices were very tender, with an underlying flavor that reminded me a little of the "Teriyaki Style" jerky you get at truck stops. I suspect comparisons to American-style jerky are apples-to-oranges, though, since the preparation processed described on the Beef King web site differs from traditional American-style jerky. No, never mind, that's stupid: there's no way to avoid comparing it to truck-stop jerky and New Beef King jerky is better. Totally better. Even better than the handmade craft-jerky you get at your better class of truck stops. It rocks. I want more.

Since they accept PayPal, I'm guessing you can mail-order, but I'm just going to mosey on down there in person next time I get the craving. Who knows what else I'll find?[4]

[1] Some people go on pub crawls. We go on food crawls. The Chinatown Ice Cream Factory was in there somewhere, too. The next stop was the Lower East Side and a visit to Katz's for pastrami and beer (with a short moment of silence for the Second Avenue Deli), followed by a quick hop up to the East Village for assorted appetizers at Tigerland. Tigerland is really good, you should go there. The last stop was to be the strangely Japanese east 9th street for for octopus balls at Otakfuku, but it was getting late and our daughter needed to get to bed.
[2] Actually, there wasn't a day's menu, we constructed the whole "all day progressive dinner" thing post hoc to justify our gluttony.
[3] Or the more usual Twinkies and Coke.
[4] Right, Chinatown, so rats the size of Great Danes, but I mean other than that.

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