Certain simultaneous experiences resonate in my memory even though they happened decades ago. I believe that I heard Louis sing and play CHINATOWN, MY CHINATOWN in the same year that I was first introduced to that downtown New York City neighborhood, through the kindness of S.N. Zimny, so a hot performance of that song always tastes like the first bite of roast duck chow mei fun to me.
Louis loved Chinese food, by the way.
More recently, through the good offices of Joel and Mary Forrester, I found out about XO Kitchen Restaurant on Hester Street, pictured above and below.
They are open for business! I don’t have the psychic energy needed to go there, but I can dream. (If you go, know that they don’t take credit cards.)
WordPress is not yet sophisticated enough for me to send you dinner through this blogpost — you’re on your own — but I can and will share a hot performance of CHINATOWN that was created right in front of me on November 14, 2019, by Jon-Erik Kellso, trumpet; Chris Flory, guitar; Evan Arntzen, clarinet and tenor saxophone; Neal Miner, string bass, at Cafe Bohemia, 15 Barrow Street.
Returning to the culinary thread for just a moment, Google Maps says it’s a 1.7 mile walk from Cafe Bohemia to X O — either way — that would take 12 minutes. They haven’t seen me walk, but no matter.
Here’s the music: as satisfying as any meal I could imagine and then some:
Perhaps 2021 will be the year when both these pleasures are once again available to us, freely and easily. For now, you can change the dinner menu in intriguing ways — perhaps add stir-fried broccoli? — and you can watch and listen, I hope joyously in both cases.
May your happiness increase!