Just got back from a lovely, long walk with the equally lovely Danielle. We ended up checking out what has taken over the old Andy’s Cheapee’s space on B’way and 13th Street. It’s called Chocolate by the Bald Man Max Brenner [quite an announcement about someone I’ve never heard of] and there’s a big bald head and a scribbled signature in bright yellow neon over the double doors.
Upon entering you are bombarded by chocolate being mixed, sold, spread, poured, powdered, chopped, creamed and generally conspicuously consumed. The über-chocolate atmos reminded me of the Ghirdaelli factory in SF: perhaps chocolate was once made there but you knew those days were long over.
Before I continue, you need to know: I’m not a chocolate person. I just can’t get THAT excited about it. As a kid, I was fine for the first chocolate bar, but by number two I was itchy with hives. And no, being a greedy kid doesn’t give you hives. i thought I was simply allergic to chocolate. (I'm not). As an adult, I know that most often chocolate is produced in factory that also makes chocolate with hazelnuts or almonds etc. Hey, I've been on a tour of the Ethel M factory in Vegas; I saw what they do there. And that was the main issue.
If I possibly forgot, a sign like this one below [albeit sideways] is a great reminder: DON'T EAT HERE.
So basically, no choco for me. Ever.
But not to be a complete stick in the mocha, everyone seemed very happy and buzzy about the stuff at The Bald Spot. Danielle ordered the PB and Chocloate Crepe and partook of a Nyquill measuring-cup cap-sized sample of thick hot coco [in summer? I know crazy but they were handing it out].
She took two small sips and said, “I think that’s all I needed.” There was an “Ugh” implied there.
But her crepe arrived and she had to taste that too since she already paid for it. Before they handed it to her they asked if she wanted “crunchies”—when pressed the server said “Oh it’s hazelnuts-n-stuff”.
I’m thinking: Crunchies equals nicht gut for Allergic Girl at Max Brenner’s.
Said arrived crepe was too big, too hot, and too gloopy. Danielle could only take about three bites and only two of those with any PB/Chocolate/Crunchie mixture before she was gasping for skim milk and air.
Even though Max is Israeli, so said the press material, I think he's taken the American carnival/Mall atmosphere very much to the heart of his business plan—make it big, gloopy, and chocolate-y and they will come.
Except me, Allergic Girl. And Danielle.