It's Tuesday. Last weekend is already a distant memory and this weekend couldn't feel further away. People always talk about the Sunday or even Monday blues. But, let's admit it, the Tuesday blues rank right up there - especially when it's cold and rainy with May just a week away. And, between 60 Minutes and Gossip Girl, the first few nights of the week aren't half as bad as some make them out to be. But, Tuesday really is a tough one. It's a night of the week when I feel like I should still be staying in - cooking and saving money - well, at least saving up for my plans later in the week. But, in all honesty, by Tuesday, I am usually ready for a night out of my apartment. And, what better way to get through the week than head out for a low key outing? Well, thanks to the recession, the Flea Market Cafe in the east village has made it possible for you to enjoy a Tuesday night out - and without the guilt!
Forget pretending like the new 90210 is remotely decent. Get out and head to this quaint French cafe for all-you-can-eat mussels and fries - an offer available only on Tuesday nights. For $18.50, you are served all the mussels and fries imaginable, in addition to a glass of red wine, white wine, or beer. Few could argue that isn't a bargain since a standard glass of wine is nearly that amount alone these days. And, the best aspect of the deal is the variety of mussels offered. There are 4 choices: marinière (Chablis, shallots & herbs), roquefort and brie (chablis, roquefort, & brie), thailandaise (coconut milk, chablis, & green curry), and provencales (tomato, garlic, parsley, & chipotle pepper). There is really no reason not to sample all of them - especially since each one is very flavorful and different. And, trust me when I tell you that the roquefort and brie is a must as this was definitely an unexpected surprise for me. My other favorite was the classic marinière - but, the real treat was being able to try all and then go back for more on the favorites.
While I am the first to embrace a deal, I usually shy away from "all you can eat" specials. We all know I love to eat. But, I really do find that one serving (especially American ones) is definitely more than enough. And, typically, it's pastas, pizzas, or some other heavy food that is offered in bulk - and so I, unlike my male counterparts, can never really take full advantage of those deals. However, I think the Flea Market Cafe has it figured out - and I'll attribute that to their very European feel. It's probably the same reason "French Women Don't Get Fat." Mussels are not the most filling of dishes - until, of course, the pot is bottomless. I can proudly say that I got my money's worth from this special. While I didn't go for a refill on the fries (it was actually hard to hold back since they are the perfect French frites), I, along with the rest of my group, managed round two with the mussels.
Did I mention how much I love Tuesdays? Consider this the new hump day, for food at least. This is a great way to get a jump start through the week. And, now you can stay home Wednesday night - keeping on track with Lost (or getting caught up on 90210 if you really have fallen for it). Before you know it, the weekend will have practically arrived. After all, summer really isn't too far away. And, in warmer times in NYC, we all know that Thursday officially marks the start of any great weekend.
Flea Market Cafe
131 Avenue A
New York, NY 10009
FOOD RATING (Out of 5):