I can’t even count the number of times I’ve stood before a glass case at one of these lunch places looking at the same damned sandwiches, paninis and various wraps and whatnot. They all have the same names, the same ingredients and the same general feeling of blah in your mouth. So there I stood at Printon 56 with the same ho-hum sense of being a lunchtime hamster on a wheel. And then I spied the Spicy Thai Chicken Quesadilla–an ethnic mashup to be sure. While I’m sure, based on the other crap in the case, that this is something I’ve seen before, it somehow struck me as unique at the time. The issue? The thing was neither spicy nor Thai. Since when is green pepper Thai? Green pepper is what people throw into food as filler. It’s a cheap way to gain “taste” when there is none in the base food product. The issue? Green pepper, in almost all cases, is totally gross. So, by the transitive property of food service, the base food product had no taste, but was pretty much rendered gross by the addition of non-Thai grossness. Shame, as the Printon folks clearly paid up to get a professional looking sign on their store. Maybe they should have paid up for a chef that wasn’t basing his recipes on the hamburger helper cookbook. [MF]
50 W 56th St.