New Payard

Recently I or (we) stopped by JG Melons’ to get a burger (not something I do on routine, but geographically it was the best place to get a burger). I thought their burgers were perfection but also I’ve never met a burger I didn’t like, so it’s not like JG Melon’s can become a superlative in my book. What I did notice were their cottage cut fries, a bit different, but I like the classic vertically cut strips. Once the cottage fries reached our table they were cold. For nearly $11 a burger I expect a little more than that. Even McDonald’s guarantees super fresh hot fries, or you get your money back. ;)

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After dinner I guess a girl gets lucky– Payard had closed for a long long time, and if you can remember they had the best pastries in the tri-state area. To my absolute surprise, there was a FP Patisserie right next to JG’s. RIGHT NEXT DOOR!! God tested me during mid-cleanse and I failed miserably. Oh well. Those tear drop shaped mini cakes colored in pastel rainbow..do you remember those before the original location closed?? If you are watching your weight try to avoid 3rd ave between 74th and 75th. And also if you are visiting from outside the US, do not bother with the Payard Bakeries (different selection entirely)…just look for the Francois Payard Patisseries, which is where you will find the second best cakes outside of Paris. Now FP Patisserie is definitely superlative material.

Now quick note about JG Melons’…When it came to the actual burger (Mine was swiss cheese melted with Bacon, pickles, onion and ketchup you can expect only the best. Their meat is packed very lightly, and you can barely notice the ground beef’s crumbly texture due to the moisture content. My pal thinks there is a huge slab of butter placed at the center of their patties, a reasonable assumption I’d say, considering they melt in your mouth. (Photo below via instagram). Do not be swayed by the novelty of these cottage fries, they were not great. Apologies, I have no more photos of this Melons’, the restaurant was dim and I didn’t want to flash it because there is no space between you and another table. But there are enough photos circulating on the ‘gram and google. Get there also around 4-5 pm to beat the after work dinner crowd. The restaurant in general is quite ballsy. Number one, it’s cash only. Number two, the burgers don’t come with fries…you have to order a side of fries essentially if you want to see any, and the cold not-so-crispy cottage fries are $4 extra. Yes, sassy. But hey they are getting with it, why not let ‘em.

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Their pastries are beautiful, and soon I’ll do a more in-depth post about their other miniature cakes, and believe me every single combination is worth trying. The red cake that looks like a clover is out of this world, three different flavor combinations, the outer shell is this super moist raspberry sponge, and the inner layer was this dense almond or vanilla filling that almost tasted like a soft tart.

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Do not underestimate my inability to do anything in half measures. If there is a competition between you and I, about who can eat more, I will win. Before the burger there was also a little cheese and cracker setup. The best thing is a simple wedge of real parmesan, and you just like break it up with a knife and eat. I hate when they come in those flat perfectly shaved pieces. And then some salami, hard crackers that are impossible to eat without getting little herbs everywhere…I always think it’s good to be remain somewhat concerned with presentation but also to add a little carelessness and even tackiness to a cheese plate. Fresh, warm crusty baguette.  White wine out of solo cups and ice cubes dumped in a Creuset pot (Keep the white cold).

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