31 Comments
Apr 26, 2023Liked by Michael Estrin

1. Get life insurance for the liquor. For $17K premiums, you know the owner will keep a sharper eye on it.

2. Nope. I don’t dig on eating dinner-flavored desserts.

3. Huy Fong sriracha ice cream. The dairy will cut the heat, and there is a sweetness to sriracha that’ll make it play nicely with the ice cream.

4. Once they pinch me for all those computer games I pirated in my childhood, my last meal will be baked Alaska featuring sriracha ice cream with some fully insured hooch poured over it. I will leave behind no loose ends, by God.

5. I came across a $20 that said READ SITUATION NORMAL, FOOL but I had to part with it before taking its photo because my life insurance premiums are just insane. The struggle is real.

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Great answers across the board, Bill! I think you've got something with Huy Fong sriracha ice cream. It may or may not taste good, but there's no denying that the hot sauce hipsters will buy it. And that's good news, because your cut should be enough to cover all kinds of insurance premiums.

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Apr 26, 2023Liked by Michael Estrin

My idea for preventing booze theft? Drink it all.

No way I’d eat Chick’n ice cream. But yes to Waffle ice cream! I think the whole “let’s make strange flavors of ice cream” idea is wrong. Ice Cream deserves to be good, not weird.

My last meal would have to include Lemon Custard Ice Cream. Truly the nectar of the gods for me. I was caught reading NSFW and was driving everyone crazy with laughter.

My bills say “Track me at WheresGeorge.com

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Your last meal is a good choice, and I can't quibble with your crime either!

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Finding a good Italian deli in the Pacific Northwest is as hard as acquiring a leprechaun's gold. Back in New Jersey, there used to be a deli around the corner from me that made the best Bufala Mozzarella with sundried tomatoes and peppers on ciabatta bread subs that were "il paradiso supremo del gusto!" That and a can of Burnt Orange soda are the two things I'd pay a bucket of graffitied dollar bills for in these here Sasquatch Hinterlands.

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After moving back to LA from New York, I thought my best Italian deli days were behind me. LA has Italian restaurants, sure, but delis, as you know, are a different deal. But when we moved to our current house, I discovered an Italian deli nearby (the one in this story), and that deli led me to a few more. What I've discovered is that there was a small Italian-American community in the San Fernando Valley, and while most of the delis and speciality shops are gone, a few remain in my part of the Northwest Valley. They're sort of hiding in plain sight. So, here's my advice: see if any Italian immigrants came to the Sasquatch Hinterlands back in the day. It make take some digging, but there was an Italian community, there's a chance that at least one deli remains. Good luck on your quest!

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If you need me, look in the woods. I'll be the one calling out, "Paisano! ...Paisano!"

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Apr 26, 2023Liked by Michael Estrin

I have tried clam chowder ice cream. It tasted like cold clam chowder and the clams were chopped up like little chocolate chips only when I encountered them , they squished instead exploded into a nice little blast of pleasure. So maybe skip linguini and clam ? I am, however, considering making avocado ice cream just to see if it works with chips and salsa if it works out, I'll send the recipe on over to B&R.

My last meal: my mother's chocolate mousse. I was framed for breaking into a liquor store and handing out all the booze to old guys who wanted a drink with their sandwiches.

Loved this. Great example of very fun eavesdropping!

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Thank you! And I'm really impressed with your bold ice cream takes. Let us know how the avocado ice works out. My guess is better than we'd think because of the fat in the avocado.

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Apr 27, 2023Liked by Michael Estrin

That's right. In fact, there is a great recipe for it in my ice cream bible: Perfect Scoops by David Leibovitz. He, by the way, had nothing to do with the clam chowder ice cream. That was an offering at the Chowder Festival in Ipswich, MA a decade back. I can still feel those cold squishy clams...

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I’m still trying to decide what I’d do if offered clam chowder ice cream. I’d probably try it, I’d want to try it. But seafood and ice cream gives me pause.

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Apr 26, 2023Liked by Michael Estrin

Coincidentally, I just had a conversation about savory ice cream and whether or not it’s too weird. I’ve had black sesame ice cream and it’s very good. If I was pitching a savory flavor, I’d pitch Giant Pretzel Ice Cream. I think some food genius could make it work.

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Your savory choices are the right savory choices. But by giant pretzel do you mean soft pretzel? I think there’s a Ben & Jerry’s flavor with hard pretzels, right? I think it’s Everything But the Kitchen sink.

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1. Party down. An empty bottle is hardly a loss.

2. Yes, but I’m a bad person to ask. I’d try a lit firecracker, once.

3. I’ll test their devotion to post-modern ice cream. Kimchi. Asparagus. Styrofoam. It’s time to show the ice cream gods that man rules this world.

4. I’d have to go with generously spiced, honey-dipped, slow-roasted LSD. I might as well see Hades before I meet him.

5. Very often, back in high school. I like to imagine a small movement of economic grafitti. A direct attack on the only thing the machine cares about. The ex/phone number combo was a mainstay.

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Your ice cream flavor is so out there it almost feels like something Roy Choi would serve. I mean, he'd be down for the kimchi and asparagus, but he'd probably add peanut butter or maybe nacho cheese. He'd absolutely serve it a Styrofoam cup though.

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Apr 26, 2023Liked by Michael Estrin

Two bottles of booze?! Pfft! I used to work at Vons in the pharmacy and there was an adjacent emergency door that opened onto the loading dock. One night I looked up to see two guys push a shopping cart full of booze through the door to the loading dock and into the trunk of their waiting car. Not sure how many bottles that was, but it was A LOT.

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Wow, that sounds like a very boozy heist. Do you think it was all for personal consumption, or did they strike you as bootleggers?

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Omg the sandwich person. Growing up I was surrounded by some real familial characters. From a big band director at the Mark Thompson’s in SF to pipe fitters working shipyards in New Orleans and Vancouver Wa. My aunt Margie - rest her soul- used to instruct anyone making her vodka martini: “next, show the drink the bottle of vermouth, just show it, with spite and contempt ... then place the vermouth in a spray bottle, just before you spray it, laugh at the martini and immediately thrown the spray not the away but make sure the martini sees you do it”. Every time. “Aunt Margie, so no vermouth?” She would look at me sideways, “follow the exact instructions or the drink is ruined.”

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Here's to Aunt Margie! She sounds like she was a real character.

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1. Keep it behind a counter and hire a booze salesman. But then, I once stole two packs of cigarettes from Vons (1987 - a low point)

2. I would, but it was March’s flavor of the month, and I doubt we’ll see that one again.

3. I dunno - I’m still laughing at linguine and clams! A Christmas delight!

4. Pizza. For the crime, see #1.

5. I think it was something about the Illuminati.

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I’ve seen Illuminati scribbling on lots of bills. Maybe this is how they get the word out?? Pizza is a fine choice for a last meal, but from where? I feel like a Brooklyn guy like you had some good ideas about pizza to die for.

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Depends on where I die! Settebello in Pasadena or Il Dolce in Costa Mesa if I’m in SoCal. L&B if I’m in Brooklyn (now that Totonno’s is gone). If I’m here in North Carolina, just kill me.

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I should probably write a post updating my favorite pizzerias across the country.

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The North Carolina answer was just perfect! I used to love Grimaldi's when I lived in Brooklyn, but I also loved the standard NYC utility slice you find on just about every street. Not exactly what you want for your last meal, but damn good for any meal.

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1. Prohibition. That worked before, right?

2. No. Savory flavors counteract the richness and sweetness that makes ice cream incredible in the first place. Plus, it sounds truly awful.

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Prohibition totally worked! Social scientists cite it as one of the most successful moments in the history of public policy, not because it reduced alcohol consumption, but because it gave us pop culture heroes like Eliot Ness and villains like Al Capone, who in turn gave us a really solid movie called The Untouchables.

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I was gonna toss in an Untouchables reference but knew you'd come through.

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I'm not the kind of guy who brings a knife to a gun fight.

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Ha ha. Good question. I don't think that anyone was questioning their motive at the time. I think we were all just stunned by their chutzpah.

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I agree with you, Brenna.

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A good Italian Deli and ice cream are fun to think about as they are not big players for me anymore. My favorite Italian Deli and the sandwich they originated is Central Grocery in New Orleans and the muffaletta -- one of the top three sandwiches of all time!!! Furthermore for local color, it is tough to beat the French Quarter -- Q3 : While everything tastes better on vacation, I had cardomom flavored ice cream -- it was excellent -- continued best wishes and good luck with Situation Normal.

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