I was totally blissed-out at Hill Country: it has big benches and just a hint of grime, and is populated by bearded men wielding large hunks of slow-cooked meat. My kinda place. I also liked the ordering strategy: get your drinks from your server, approach the counters yourself for some sliced-to-order meat, and then pay on the way out. I ordered a Lunch Brisket Chomp (or something like that), which I doused liberally with the selection of BBQ sauces sitting on our table (the meat was a little dry). The cucumber salad was the most boring side dish available, but it was quite good anyway…and I was trying to balance out the effects of an otherwise disastrously bad-for-me lunch.
A few hours later, I stumbled (damn you, Jessica Simpson platforms) into Fanelli’s for some Makers Marks on the rocks with Styleite’s Verena, who is, in a word, awe-freaking-some, and who has promised to accompany me to Minetta for a little burger-tasting experiment (!). I want her backpack – which a friend found for her at a thrift shop for $3 – quite badly. Can we bring backpacks…uh, back? Please?