I’m extremely lucky that Singapore, unlike many expat destinations, has wide availability of familiar foods like McCain’s tater tots, jif peanut butter, newman’s lemonade and other assorted foodstuffs we enjoy. What we can’t get locally, we often bring back with us in our ridiculous luggage allowance.
However, there are a few things that one just can’t bring back or replicate the experience of locally.
Among those…a Jewish Deli. Whenever we go home, Rein’s NY Style Deli is always a high priority for this reason. Also, it is located near our friends Marvin and Rosemary, so we are often lucky enough to combine yummy food and a chance to see some dear friends.
Rein’s is located just north of Hartford, Connecticut, making it a handy place to stop between Boston and NYC. Ravi introduced me to the restaurant fairly early on in our relationship. Although I had actually lived in NYC, I had preferred to travel either by the cheap death-bus out of chinatown or to drive myself at 2am in order to bypass traffic. So my experiences with food between Boston and NYC had been limited to the cardboard that passes for food at highway stops.
Among other things, they are known for their delicious half-sour pickles. They have a bulletin board full of pictures of children enjoying their first pickle at Reins.
While not her first pickle by a long stretch, Ellie is a fan of the half sour pickles.
As you might expect from a place that takes pride in giving kids their first pickle, they are great with kids. When E was in a high chair, they spread paper under the high chair (to better catch the inevitable falling food) and provide crayons and paper to draw on. Now that she’s bigger, there are still crayons and paper (although she prefers her ipod once the food arrives to better ignore the boring grownups).
They’re well known for their traditional fare, such as matzo ball soup (above) and latkes (below). They also do the traditional New York style deli sandwich (aka a TON of meat on the sandwich…usually enough that any sane person could make two meals out of it)–which sadly I don’t have a picture of as we were all too busy eating. They also have killer (huge) desserts. It is impossible not to leave feeling sated.
Rein’s is not only a restaurant, but also has a thriving take out counter (see below–lox). You can stop in and pick up your bagels and lox for a brunch. If I could clone it and plop one down here in the middle of Singapore, it might be the very first restaurant for which I’d use the super power.
As I said, we’re lucky enough that a visit to Rein’s usually also means a visit with our friends Marvin and Rosemary (who are getting married later this year!). They’re big Ellie fans (Marvin did a gorgeous series of Ellie in the park in Nov 2010 which you can see here) and we couldn’t wait for them to meet “Little Baby Rhi-Rhi” as they christened her.