Meet & Eat: Carrie Vasios, Serious Eats Intern
Note: Please welcome one of our current interns, Carrie Vasios. She'll be taking over the Serious Entertaining column, inspiring us with themed party menus and decor tips each week. She's also keeping busy on sandwich duty and played a big role in our edible stadium construction (nice work, paving that guacamole field, Carrie!). Get to know her and say hello! —The Mgmt.
Name: Carrie Vasios
Location: New York City
Favorite comfort food? Soup. Any kind, as long as it's hot! Avgolemono tastes like my childhood. And if I'm feeling under the weather, I'll just stick my head into a big bowl of the chicken noodle soup from Grand Sichuan. Make sure you inhale the peppery broth before slurping down the noodles.
Guilty pleasures? Late night. Food eaten after 12 a.m just tastes better. Too bad I rarely make it past eleven.
Describe your perfect meal. My friends and I travel a lot together, so any meal in a foreign place where we order half the menu and then attack it like we're never going to eat again. Ideally there will be copious amounts of wine and no mountainside to scale to get there (though usually I don't get my wish on the latter).
What food won't you eat? Jarred salsa after our taste test at SEHQ. I've realized I'm just not a fan. Give me fresh, or give me guacamole.
What would you like to try but haven't yet? The tasting menu at French Laundry and the new Snickers Peanut Butter Squared bar.
Favorite food person? I love all food people because they make the things I love to eat. But a special kudos to Amy from Amy's Bread for starting my favorite NYC food store and to my Grammy for excelling in eggplant.
When did you first realize you were a serious eater? In middle school, we had to attend these weekly morning group meetings. Most of my classmates just brought in bags of (admittedly awesome) New York bagels. I would do things like get up at 6 a.m. to make homemade cinnamon rolls with vanilla icing. I've since learned you can let bread rise in the fridge overnight.
What do your family and friends think of your food obsessions? As the receptacles for my cooking exploits, they're pretty happy about it. And they've gotten over the fact that I eat jam straight out of the jar.
Favorite food sites or blogs (besides SE, naturally)? New York magazine's restaurant and bar websites are where I go first when I want reviews. I like how you can search for everything from cabarets to whiskey bars. Though I'd like to know who has ever refined their search with the "Frat Feel" filter.
Everyone has their go-to person for restaurant recommendations. Who's yours? I feel very lucky to say that all of my friends are discerning eaters and usually I just send out a mass email. In fact, deciding on a place to eat together can take a seriously long time. Someone needs to invent an App where it just spits out a restaurant and you have to go there. And then I need to get an iPhone.
And what's the best recommendation they've ever given you? Soccarat, Chavella's, Burp Castle (all NYC).
What is your favorite meal of the day, and what's your go-to spot for it? Your usual order? Definitely dinner. I feel like it gives you the most options and there's usually wine. My go-to dinner is usually some kind of homemade pasta situation, but if I'm going out I like to go to Snack Taverna for their meze sampler of melitzanosalata, tzatziki, taramosalata and dolmades. And they have amazing, honey laden desserts.
Do you ever cook? What's the best dish you make? I cook all the time. I daydream about what I'm going to cook next and spend way too much time trolling cookbooks. Friends usually request my banana black bean empanadas or my toffee chocolate chip cookies, but I think my ragu bolognese is pretty stellar if I do say so myself.