Archive for the ‘Mouth’ Category

NOT FUNNY ENOUGH Part 2

July 31, 2009

THE AUDITION

I drove to the Groundlings theatre on Melrose, just west of La Brea.  My insouciance (take THAT GRE) from earlier in the week had been replaced by a very petite boulder in my stomach, about the size of a peach—the realization that I might be getting myself into something for which I was wholly unprepared. 

That feeling didn’t go away when I got to the lobby of the theatre.  Creating a kind of thespians tableaux, the foyer was replete with good-looking PROFESSIONAL actors who were waiting to be called into the theater.  Some stood, some sat, and one did circles in his wheelchair. They mumbled lines to themselves from the scripts they had in clear view, a sign to the casual observer they were actors and not Starbucks baristas.  Each held an ACTING résumé, conveniently located on the flipside of an 8″ x 11” glossy photo which featured them BriteSmile®ing eerily at you. 

Stuffing the Rite-Aid envelope of Match.com photos and my professional résumé a little deeper into my purse, I practiced breathing exercises to get rid of the peach in my stomach that had turned into a grapefruit.  A frosty-tipped blond with smart girl glasses and an “I heart unique corns” t-shirt pushed through the theatre doors and asked us all to come into the inner sanctum.  I had envisioned some kind of dance studio set-up for the audition, like in American Idol, with a ballet barre in the back and judges behind a foldable table with foldable chairs.  The instructions didn’t say we would be performing on the Groundlings stage. 

 After collecting our résumés, along with mine and the guy with the wheelchair’s 3 x 5 photos, she (let’s call her Evelyn to protect the innocent) told us a little bit about the class.   “This is really a class for professional actors.  Everyone who goes through the Groundlings program starts here.  If you aren’t a professional actor, or have limited improv experience, you may find that the Groundlings extension program is more for you.  You can find people from all walks of life in that class—lawyers, 40-year-old housewives.”  (OUCH)

Evelyn went on but I stopped paying attention after the 40-year-old housewives comment.  I definitely had some things working against me from the get go.  She asked us on stage to do some warm up drills and told us that in improvisation, it’s important to do everything big.  She said something next about a lot of clapping and enthusiasm and supporting each other mumbo jumbo.

Evelyn asked us to form a circle and say our name and why we were here today.  I thought it might work to my advantage to stand out from the actors. So when it got to my turn, after numerous people saying they thought they were funny, and all their friends told them so, and they were actors blah, blah, blah, I said, “I don’t really have great ambitions.  I was recently rated least funny member of my family and I just want to beat out my seven-year-old nephew. I don’t need to be funny to the world, just a few people.” 

 Well that got a laugh.  And rousing support from the actors. 

“Good for you! Way to go!” My own support choir, albeit a little patronizing.

 Evelyn said, “Well, it’s not a bad thing to have specific goals.”

 I loved that Evelyn; she was very good at finding the right words. 

 The next drill was a round-robin where Evelyn would give us an emotion and we had to say “YES!” and clap at someone else, who then followed.  This was exhausting.  Every actor tried to outdo each other in cleverness, animation, and voice pitch, while remembering to clap at someone else.  Honestly, I was spending so much time trying to think of how to creatively say “Yes!” while looking angry, shy, flirty, and ditzy, and then do it a different way the next time, I kept forgetting to clap.  Evelyn had to remind me more than once to actually clap AT someone, so they knew who was next. 

Following the “emotion drill,” she started a sentence and then we had to complete it, one word at a time.  Let’s just say it messes up the whole group when you throw out a word like gargoyles.  I felt bad about my word choices, and I have no idea why gargoyles came to mind, I don’t even like them.

This was about the time my snickers bar started failing me.  All that enthusiasm I had to provide in the drills, combined with the nervous energy, just burned that sucker away.  The hardest drill was next—improvisation on stage with a partner.  I won’t bore you with the details but let’s just say it could have gone worse, I was the last one to go.  Evelyn actually forgot me because she lost my 3 x 5 picture in the stack of photos she was using to make notes.  She had coached other people on no bathroom humor, always say “Yes, and”, use action words to keep the story going, don’t get into a fight, and let the audience know where you are.  Oh and most important, move your hands to mime action.  Seriously, other than the bathroom humor advice, she called me out on pretty much everything from the list. 

Scene 1“mother with son packing for college.”  I asked Evelyn who the mother was and who the son was but she didn’t think I was funny, or she just thought I was an idiot.  Scene began, my partner started folding pretend clothes into a pretend suitcase.  I started getting on my fake son’s case about how he was packing (no negativity).  I asked him why he was doing it that way (no questions) while holding one hand locked on my hip and my finger at my lips the whole time (move on the stage and mime.)  Scene over.

Scene 2  “lieutenant and a sergeant and one was being decorated.” Evelyn reminded me not to be negative or get into fights and remember to keep the action going with movement and “Yes, and.”  I went into outer space at that point, I had nothing.  All I could think of was to hold a pretend gun, so I mimed a bayonet and pretty much just said “Yes, and” whenever he asked me anything.  I finally came to and all I could think of was dancing poodles, which really changed the scene around in a weird way.  At that point, my supportive choir in the audience went completely mute. 

The final drill I actually did quite well on, but I don’t think it was the make or break moment in determining my future with the Groundlings.  We had to quickly make up names for toe-nail polish “Black Death”, lost Beatle’s songs “Yellow Brick Rogue”, children’s game “I’m a Barista,” etc.  I was a finalist in the sudden death match.

Evelyn concluded the audition by thanking us for coming, (don’t let the door hit you in the behind).  I decided not to give her my professional résumé.  I’d just get docked points for total cluelessness. 

Leaving the theatre, I knew I would likely not be coming back anytime soon.  I think a number of us knew that.  But I was glad I did it, if not to get funnier, then to say that I had performed for a select audience on the Groundlings stage.  If you know me well, I promise you, that’s funny.  Right?

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NOT FUNNY ENOUGH

July 30, 2009

PART ONE. FAILING ON THE FUNNY METER

As someone who is inherently competitive, it’s very frustrating being a member of a family that excels in something at which you are not the strongest.  My family is funny.  Or as they will now be known henceforth —that family of funny wannabes.  I’m distancing myself from them after this experience. 

Tomorrow at 2 PM, I will be told via email if I made it into the Groundlings Basic One Improv Class.  Everyone who has been through that system starts at this level—Will Ferrell, Phil Hartmann, and thousands of other wannabes.  After today’s audition, I’m pretty confident in saying I don’t have a snowball’s chance in ‘H E double hockey sticks’ to get into this class. But I’m getting ahead of myself. You’re probably asking ‘why pray tell would you ever want to go through a comedy improvisation class with the Groundlings?’  Blame it on my brother-in-law.

Last week, he and I were having a perfectly pleasant phone conversation, nephews, work, vacation—then we segued into the subject of funny.  I made the mistake of asking him to rank each family member by funniness.  We got to me and he avoided the question by turning it into a complicated meter system where I ended up somewhere in the slightly humourous range, nowhere near funny. 

“I disagree with your evaluation of my funniness.  I’ve been told by many people that I’m funny but it’s a more dry, ironic wit,” I said.

He paused, actually guffawed.  “Really?  I’ll give you this, you’re funnier on paper than in person.”

“What does that mean?” I asked, appalled. “That I have to think things through because I’m so mentally slow?” 

“You try too hard, you’re too studied.  Like your dad.  But he’s still funnier than you.”

My dad!  Daddy is still using the same joke from twenty years ago after he gets the bill at a restaurant, ‘Whoa, hold on, can someone get me a phone?, because that looks more like a phone number than a bill.’  Anyhoo, my brother-in-law and I discussed how I could get funnier, and he mentioned  me working on my story delivery.  He noted that work friends ASK him to tell funny stories and do impressions.  (Personally, I think my brother-in-law has way too much time on his hands at work and should be focusing on bringing home more bacon.  I’m just saying.) 

After the conversation, I was boiling, so I did what I do whenever I’m told I’m not good at something.  I found a class.  I really wanted to show him that if I focused, like with sailing, sea-kayaking, moutaineering, social psychology, Indian cuisine, Spanish, French, and creative writing, I could and WOULD get better.  And that’s when it appeared on screen…The Groundlings…my personal great white hope. 

The instructions on the website for the Groundlings classes stipulated that everyone had to audition.  I had acted in college and high school, and I had also done improv in drama class.  Piece of cake.  This puppy would be a no-brainer.  The instructions did mention the requirement of a photo and resumé, but said a head shot wasn’t necessary.  No sweat, I had just taken some great photos for my old Match.com profile a year ago, and I did have a professional resumé. 

Audition day arrived.  (Cue the foreboding music.)  I was starting to get nervous that morning, and wondered if I was truly suffering from some 40-year-old life melt down.  But I was determined.  Since he got me into this mess, I called my brother-in-law to work me through it.  He suggested perhaps I needed some “back-up material,” in case I went blank. 

“Have some good come backs.  Like maybe with different accents to show your range.  Spanish accents can be funny,” he noted. 

“Yeah, I don’t do accents.”  I said. ‘What about comeback lines that have already worked.  Like on sitcoms.  ‘What you talkin’ about Willis?’ from Different Strokes or something from SNL that a comedian would appreciate.  If I throw enough at them—that could be the joke.”

“Yes, you doing a 5-year-old little kid from an eighties television show, that might be retro, but will wear thin, and you don’t sound like Gary Coleman at all.” 

“Well, hopefully no one is particularly good, I mean it’s auditioning for Basic One, these aren’t professionals.”

At the end of the call, he wished me good luck and I went off to Rite-Aid to process my 3 x 5 photos.  As audition time rolled around, which was also lunch time, I raced out of the Pacific Design Center, only having time to print out my resume, and grab a snickers from the vending machine for lunch.  I told myself this whole audition thing was just a formality.  I’d ace this.  And maybe I’d get extra points for working at an entertainment PR firm.  It was obviously in my blood.

NEXT…….PART TWO- THE AUDITION, CUE THE CRICKETS

Single Diner: The Würst Way to Spend Jury Duty

March 16, 2009

Sausage on grill at Voderer Sternen
When I visit my friend Elaine in Zurich, I make a daily stop at my favorite Swiss culinary establishment, and serious sausage stand, the famous Voderer Sternen Grill. The line is always long, but quick and orderly, and when one finally makes it to the front, the gentleman behind the grill has no time for dawdlers. Like a Swiss German version of Seinfeld’s International Soup Kitchen Nazi, you have to choose fast, a Bratwurst or Servelat, white or red. Holding the steamy link in my left paw, a hot crusty roll in my right and a small container of salaciously sinus-opening mustard in my teeth, I find a standing table and order a good German beer. I alternate flavors as I take a dip, a bite, a bite, and a sip until all has disappeared and I have to decide if I can legitimately order another without rolling home.

In comparison to the Voderer Sternen, my biased opinion is that American hot dog stands, like Pinks in LA, truly pale in comparison. I highly doubted that the level of sausage pleasure I experienced at the VS could be matched in the United States until I heard about Würstkuche in downtown LA’s Little Tokyo. Taking advantage of an extended stint on jury duty at the lovely Metropolitan Court House on Hill Street, I visited the restaurant two times last week…a definite perk of the two-hour jury duty lunch.

With twenty-two sausages to choose from, cooked on an open grill similar to the Voderer Sternen, the links come from local vendors. Classics like Bratwurst, Hot Italian and Kielbasa (and their veggie rivals) are included on the list and the two gourmet ones I tried—Austin Blues, a hot and spicy, tri-pepper and hardwood smoked pork link and Santa Fe jack cheese and jalapeño peppers, a turkey dog, were both good, with my preference leaning to the Austin Blues, a reminder of the Louisiana hot sausage and smoked kielbasa I grew up on as a child. The crazier exotic link selections, such as rattlesnake and rabbit with jalapeño peppers and the alligator and pork, will have to wait until I get through the classic terrain first. Each sausage purchase comes with your choice of mustards, like my favorite whole grain, as well as quality toppings like carmelized onions, sweet peppers, and sauerkraut, all packed into an over-sized, freshly baked, hot roll.

While the menu beyond the sausages is simple in concept, offering fries and drinks, it’s the depth of selection and variety within each category that impresses the foodie in me. Hot, thick-cut, and sea-salted Belgian fries come in a white wrapper complemented by a moving selection of ten dipping sauces like bleu cheese walnut and bacon or chipotle aioli. Innovative and hard to find bottled sodas, including locally bottled Nesbitts, and a dizzying selection of Belgian and German beers on tap, bring this tasty meal to under $20.

A corner restaurant with minor signage on the outside and a line of hipsters out the door, Würstkuche is challenging to find in Little Tokyo but of course, well worth it. Sandwiched into a really cute neighborhood that is a neat discovery in itself, the restaurant is industrially modern in design, with the eating area structured like a modern beer hall. Long tables, for large communal groups who want to hang awhile, take up most of the floor with a seated bar in the back. Unlike the Voderer Sternen, that only offers two sausage choices with a line that moves at a clip, be prepared to wait a bit for your on-demand dog, fries and beer. If you ask, the owners will offer you trial tastes of the beers on tap while you wait. As this place gets found out, that’s not a bad idea in order to make sure the starving sausage lovers are kept at bay.

The Winter Coat

August 16, 2008

The winter coat I wear is a brilliant shade of red.
I’ve got on my long underwear and my scarf, gloves and hat.
Impentrable, fearless, tough, protected
I button up the charcoal togs and tighten my hat around my head
to brace for the expected wind outside, and our first date.

You try to kiss me and my eyes dart frantically for an exit.
Somewhere to slip away to.
Deer, kitten, mouse, plaything
When I feel hunted I sometimes wound in order to escape.
Maybe I’m not right in the head.

On date number two your coat brushes me when we kiss.
Deepest dark blue it hides your belly and makes you look dashing.
Tender, sweet, light, bright
My heart bumps a bit when we touch-I must be vigilant
But I do like it a little.

I tell you about the dream I had watching myself being held down by another version of me.
I couldn’t make my body move to escape.
Frustration, apathy, terror, disrepect
Is that concern or pity on your face
when I tell you I woke up crying?

Our third date you are distracted because work isn’t going well.
You wear a thick ski coat covered with those ugly epaulets.
Boredom, dissatisfaction, need space, need air
Maybe you are starting to lose interest in me?
Is it just a matter of time?

We have a fight on our fourth date but I don’t know how it starts.
The slightest perceived hurt brings words of destruction from me.
Sweetheart, father, lover, sadist
Just tell me who you want me to be and I’ll be her.
Am I running away from you or are you running away from me?

These thick coats we wear to protect ourselves from the cold
Keep us from actually touching.
Invincible, girl, boy, disarmament
But maybe, if we both undo a few buttons at the same time
it’s a start?

SINGLE DINER: My Three Lovers

August 9, 2008

I’ve got three lovers right now—each to fit a different mood.  One is for those late nights when I really have to satisfy an urge, another is for when I’m feeling a little wilder and need some spice, and the other is for pure unadulterated passion.  Last week, I fit them all in and totally overindulged. 

 

Tuesday was my late night lover- Norm’s.  I don’t really admit to going to Norm’s (although I guess I am now) but Norm’s has menu items I can’t get anywhere else like mozzarella sticks and French dip.  I like laminated menus, shiny plastic chairs that swivel, and name-tag wearing waitresses with skirts a bit too short.  And I love the satisfaction of a meal for $9.99 with not only a steak and potato but soup, salad, and bread. Now that’s a deal.   

Norm’s is close to my office so I went I for the lunch rush to try the “Southern inspired menu.” Jackpot!  A Catfish, hush puppies, cheese grits combo!  God had smiled down on me.  Catfish is my Southern girl favorite and I love to smother it with ketchup like I did when I was little.  Grits are number two on my list of Southern delicacies. And cheese grits….Lord just take me now. It wasn’t a gourmet experience, I could go on about the things that weren’t Southern enough, but I won’t.  I went there for exactly the experience I got—simple, straightforward food, served in a diner (albeit Flinstones-inspired) restaurant with a colorful and diverse clientele.  My dad would have been on cloud nine.

 

Saturday night was Lotería Grill.  I typically go to the Farmer’s Market location once a week but wanted to try the new sit down restaurant in Hollywood.  I really believe this is the best Mexican restaurant in town.  The new place has exactly the same menu as the counter at the Grove but also includes a great bar, with every Tequila known to man, free chips and salsa (FM charges extra) and the most amazing helado (ice cream) I have had since living in Los Angeles. 

 

I always start with the tortilla soup, then some carnitas or enchiladas suiza. With its creamy consistency, the soup, topped with manchego cheese, dried poblano, avocado slice and tostado garnish, beats anything else I know in LA.  If I just want a snack, the carnitas work well and I love the originality of the meat combos to choose from…I recommend trying the sampler to really get the gamut. For Saturday, since the restaurant had the tequila bar, I downed a margarita and then tried the magical pina colada helado.  I couldn’t help myself-I loudly proclaimed that everyone at the restaurant should try this stuff.  I told at least 4 strangers and the bartender.  I’m not kidding, that stuff is magical. 

 

 

Sunday afternoon was Pizzeria Mozza.  This place ranks as one of my favorite restaurants bar none!  The pizzas live up to the hype, basically because the crust is truly extraordinary (thank you Nancy Silverton) and the topppings are so well balanced, nothing overwhelms anything else―it’s a melody of outstanding ingredients.  Pizza aside though, in my opinion, the Mozzarella Caprese with homemade buffalo mozzarella, sunned tomatoes and high quality olive oil is the best thing on the menu.  You can’t believe you are eating something so sublime and simple.  Top that all off with a great Italian wine and I smile the entire time I am eating. 

While my lovers don’t help me keep my waist line in chec, they do leave me with a smile on my face, thinking about the next time I’ll be able to see them again.

 

 

 

Fast Food Fodder: McDonald’s Southern Style Chicken Sandwich versus Chick-fil-A

July 6, 2008
Pic stolen from LAist but good comparitive of the two

Pic stolen from LAist but good comparitive of the two

When I saw the billboards around town introducing the new Southern Style Chicken Sandwich, I was curious.  Were they really trying to compete with my beloved Chick-fil-A?  For those of you unaware of this chicken fast food mecca, Chick-fil-A, a primarily Southern chain with a few outposts (including Palos Verdes I’m told) is the best fried chicken sandwich known to man.  The perfectly tender, juicy and crisp chicken fillet is protected by a fresh, soft bun, buttered on top, with two pickles, and a dollop of mayo.  Get the waffle fries and lemonade and you have a masterwork of fast food eatin’. 

Every time I visit my sister in Alabama, we have to go to Chick-fil-A. As it is a Christian owned entity and therefore has an owner who believes in giving his workers Sundays off, any visits over a weekend typically include picking me up at the airport and driving directly to the nearest location.  I love flying Delta in that Atlanta has a Chick-fil-a in it’s terminal, DFW does not.

But I digress. When I saw the billboards for not only the sandwich but the chicken biscuit, I could not get to McDonald’s fast enough to determine if this was the real thing.  So, in my neverending quest to eat food I love, I compare the two using my own research method.  Item for item comparison.

Buns-  McDonald’s is a little stale and the “butter” product is a bit greasy making holding the bun greasy as well, but not bad.  Chick-fil-a wins.

Pickles- McDonald’s are a little wimpier and more thinly cut.  I’m guessing they are tied.

Chicken breast- McDonald’s is a little greasier but both have good flavor.  Chick-fil-a is probably a bit bigger.

Mayonnaise- At least in LA, they don’t have packets of mayo or lite mayo to add on your own so Chick-fil-a wins this. 

Overall, I can handle the McDonald’s version in a pinch, and I have stopped more than one time over the last month with a need for the sandwich (sometimes the Cinnamelt wins out) but Chick-fil-a still has my devotion.

For other opinions on this matter visit LAist at http://laist.com/2008/05/06/mcdonalds_new_s.php.

Books I Loved: The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao (Pulitzer Prize)

July 6, 2008

Junot Diaz recently received this year’s Pulitzer for The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao.  The book will also be made into a movie by Miramax.  The tale is a sweeping multi-generational epic replete with quirky character driven humor and family tragedy on a monumental scale. We are taken back and forth in time and place, from the tumultous and violent past of the Dominican Republic, reigned by dictator of terror Trujillo, to a New Jersey Plymouth Rock where Oscar’s family has landed.

A fuku (curse) haunts the family after its patriarch, a doctor, decides to not grant the dictator’s lascivious wish- meeting the man’s underage daughter.  The doctor’s naive belief that, as a man of means, he will not suffer at the hands of Trujillo, proves deadly wrong. The author’s casual writing style, supported by historical and humorous footnotes, craftily and comfortably reels the reader into this literary juggernaut of a novel.

I first heard about the book when The Colbert Report featured Diaz on the show.  Colbert, being his usual “hard hitting reporter” self, wanted to know if the “disastrously overweight ghetto nerd” in the story was anything like him.  DIaz’s abaility to reference Triphids, Dungeons and Dragons, Tolkien, and Star Wars with a science fiction lover’s alacrity, had the mark of a diehard fan.  But the book is obviously more than great pop references.  It reminds me in many ways of The Adventures of Kavalier and Klay, another Pulitzer winner.  Both authors have the ability to take you into another world, with one foot on United States soil and one in the homeland, while leaving you with a sense that you truly know these characters.

Love and sex, power and violence, belonging and acceptance are dual themes interwoven into this story of people searching for their identity and self-worth in places where the rules have been established for them.  The fuku becomes each character’s personal struggle with a choice- fighting and dying for what you love and believe in, or accepting what “is” with great personal loss to your soul. 

The characters are vividly and honestly brought to life in this book- one can only reflect on the fukus each of us believe we have in our own life.  Do we cling to the past and blame God for our misfortune, cursing the world for what it has made us, or do we take life as it is and thank God for giving us the tools, an internal compass and a pat of self worth, to find our own love and happiness?  And as Americans, do we believe that the American dream is something every human deserves, or has that just become a rhetoric we propogate?

Books I Want to Read: The World in Six Songs

July 6, 2008

Knowledge, friendship, ceremony, joy, comfort and love – these are the six evolutionary musical forms that provide a window into the human soul. In his recent book, “The World in Six Songs: How the Musical Brain Created Human Nature,” musical neuroscientist and New York Times bestselling author Daniel J. Levitin tunes readers in to his theory of “six songs” and how our brains listen and play music today. Blending music and science, Levitin shows how human culture has evolved through the relationships and social ties that result when music and dance intertwine. 
This link has a great interview with the author by KPCC’s Patt Morrision.  Patt Morrison show 
Daniel J. Levitin, author “The World in Six Songs: How the Musical Brain Created Human Nature.” He runs the Laboratory for Musical Perception, Cognition, and Expertise at McGill University.

SINGLE DINER: Little Love Pockets from Heaven or LA-Italian Style

July 4, 2008

Maybe because it’s summertime, your intrepid and starving SINGLE DINER is feeling a little in need of a good European vacation.  With travel across the pond more than expensive, eating well in LA, especially at some of the highly lauded Italian restaurants, seemed like an affordable solution.  Rules of thumb for us, we always eat at the bar, bring a book and focus on the food at hand. 

SINGLE DINER revisited two great restaurants, Osteria Mozza on Highland and Melrose, late on a Tuesday night, and La Terza in the Orlando Hotel on 3rd Street at 5 PM on a Thursday.  Both have wonderful pedigrees.  O. Mozza has been turning the heads of the most discriminating eaters with Nancy Silverton behind the counter and Mario Batali on board (if only in name?) while La Terza, sister osteria to Angeli Osteria, certainly comes from good stock-I hear Silverton used to do Mozarella Nights there before moving to the Mozza duo. 

While my methods of observation are not necessarily scientific, there are summer Italian food items I always have to have.  I started with the Prosciutto and Melone at both.  The portion and presentation at Osteria was a little more “controlled” with a perfect addition of olive oil gracing the perfect melone and charcuterie.  La Terza’s had wonderful melone as well and both were similar in standard, but La Terza just wasn’t quite as graceful.  But one thing, both still needed a bit of fresh cracked pepper which was never offered.  I ordered the $38 glass of Brunello at Mozza and started with a Chianti at Terza but my wonderfully enthusiastic bar tender Greg, steered me to a Barolo that had alot more going on.  Both were lovely, complicated enough, the Brunello more so, and balanced well, not to much alcohol overload (the Chianti was not balanced, thanks Greg for taking it away!) 

My main courses were similar-Francolli di Brasato at Mozza and Agnolotti with lamb and parmigianno reg. sauce at Terza.  Both daintily al dente although I felt the Mozza dish needed a bit of salt and maybe some pepper.  I’m all for subtle and light but the pureed meat in the raviolis was a tad too bland.  The Agnolotti at Terza was perfect though.  I ordered a half portion to not go crazy and little love pockets from heaven is my best description.  Perfect proportions of the lamb combined with the pasta and the cheese sauce.  Lovely. 

I can’t not say anything about the bread and the service.  These items for me are always what put the cherry on the top of the sundae.  Let me say it was a close race on service, with La Terza winning by a hair, but considering that I was the only one at the bar at 5 PM, let’s call it even.  Bread though? La Terza, how do you know we love our bread warm with a little olive oil and grilling?  Ms. Silverton, you are a bread genius but I hold you to the highest standard always…this night didn’t cut it.

I didn’t have an official dessert at La Terza, my lemon drop started the evening and so I guess let’s say that was dessert.  Sugar rim was a little rocky, but good enough.  The Rosemary Olive Oil Cakes with gelato and glass sugar accompaniment had been sold to me at Mozza because of their simplicity.  Sadly, while I was a little overstuffed at that point, the salt inclusion which started off as an interesting play against the ice cream and the little cakes, became cloying very quickly.  I just couldn’t finish it. 

My total bill at both was in the $75 and up range for one person.  I do recommend considering half portions when you order pasta…you really get away from feeling it’s a horse race to finish everything and you aren’t so overstuffed later.  Both get my SINGLE DINER stamp of approval with the following SINGLE DINER ratings:

SINGLE DINER COMFORT RATING:  28 of 30 for both.  Didn’t matter if I was there with someone or by myself.
MEETING NEW PEOPLE:  Osteria M. The bar is very large and more of a party crowd.
BEING TAKEN CARE OF: Both tie.  Osteria M. had great service, hard to tell with Terza as I was one of two at the bar and the bartender talked to me the entire time.
BEING LEFT ALONE: Osteria M.  Too busy for anyone to notice you unless you want to be noticed.
QUIET FOR WORKING OR READING: I would not give marks on this to either, La Terza can get pretty loud and it’s a small bar.

Hugs and kisses….

SINGLE DINER (E)