Oliveira’s did something to me. It made me forget all about this website and this Untitled Bites thing. It made me forget to take pictures of my food on my crappy iPhone camera so you guys can drool over the borderline-blurry deliciousness that I encounter. It made me come back a second time the next day. It gave me the itis.
We had Brazilian churrascarias where I grew up in Northern VA, but there were downsides – they were expensive as hell (not that you’d expect it to be cheap when you’re damn near swimming in grilled meat), and they were only all you can eat. Have you seen me? Maybe you have, maybe you haven’t, but I’m not exactly a large person and I will never get my money’s worth at an all you can eat buffet, no matter how good the food is. I am the queen of asking for food to-go and turning leftovers into something incredible – something which wasn’t possible at the spots like Fogo de Chao or Malibu Grill (what y’all know about that one? ha).
Where Oliveira’s wins is that it’s slightly less expensive, more casual (valet parking my ass), and you have the option for all you can eat or you can pay by the pound and take what you don’t eat home with you. Yes! East Boston also has a large Brazilian population so this shit is the real deal. Yes, it’s salty. Yes, your meal will be carb heavy and you will put on a few pounds. But it’s so good. The salad bar has some great cold and hot options, including salads, fruit, various types of rice (one day I went they had a rice with chicken in it, and the next day a rice with various meats like sausage stir fried into it, in addition to the basic yellow and white rices), beans, stewed meats like oxtail, fried fish, sometimes a salmon in a passion fruit cream sauce, mashed potatoes, yuca, over easy eggs (whoever discovered the art of cooking an egg with the yolk still runny gets infinite praise from me) grilled or steamed vegetables, etc., you get the idea. Then when you’re done with that part, you walk your plate on over to the grill area and just tell the guy what you want and watch as he slices it off skewers and chops it up and hands it to you. You can choose from a ton of stuff – ribs, sausages (they have chicken, pork, and kielbasa), lamb (I don’t see this often at other Brazilian spots, and their lamb was that perfect balance of fatty and lean, with great flavor), chicken wrapped in bacon, various cuts of beef, chicken hearts, etc. The sausages had crisp skins and juicy insides, the chicken hearts were pleasantly chewy, the salmon was light and the cream sauce not-too-fruity, which made me happy. The white rice tasted of that mystery ingredient that the Brazilians have found that make their basic white rice taste more amazing than mine, which I know is something pork-based. Whatever. It’s delicious.
You sit. Or you take it to go. And you eat. And you thank whatever deity you praise for putting Brazilians on our earth. And you wonder how their women are so notoriously good looking if they eat this stuff all the time. And if you’re like me, you come back the next day to ponder the exact same things.
Other important things to note that I can’t speak about because I didn’t partake: they have beer/wine, maybe liquor, I didn’t notice since I was on a sober kick. They also have a delivery menu. Their dessert case is filled with things that look potentially amazing, but who has room for all of that? They also have a wide selection of imported candy that fascinates the hell out of me, but I have been too full to purchase.
Mike Beatz and Norwegian producer Adonis release their 10-track free album, featuring emcees such as Royce Da 5’9, Skyzoo, Reks, AZ, Termanology, and more. And yeah, that wasn’t a typo, it’s free. Download it!
|01..| Go Hard
|02..| You Know [Ft. Guilty Simpson & Reks]
|03..| Black Out [Ft. Skyzoo]
|04..| World Go Round [Ft. Royce Da 5’9]
|05..| Str8 Like Indian Hair
|06..| Who I Do It For [Ft. Termanology & AZ]
|07..| Fuck You [Ft. Lucian & Sha Stimuli]
|09..| My World [Ft. Wrekonize of Mayday]
|10..| Tell Me What I Am
Thurz, of U-N-I fame, is releasing his first solo album, and “Los Angeles” serves as the first single. The album, L.A. Riot, will be released this summer, featuring Aloe Blacc, Black Thought, and production from DJ Khalil and THX, among others. Click that downward facing arrow on the player to get the track.
More Phil Ade. Every single Friday, without fail, I get a track from him in the inbox. This time he goes in over Juvenile’s “Ha.” I’m usually not a fan of people going in over other people’s beats, especially if they were from hits that are well known, but I still can’t be mad at Phil’s flow.
This was a really fun interview to do. Today the text version of my conversation with one of Atlantic’s recent acquisitions, Donnis, went up over at TheWellVersed. He speaks on everything ranging from an embarrassing stage moment, to how he would spend his ideal springtime day in ATL. Read on to learn more…
For those of you not from here, this is a nice representation of how the Hip Hop scene is around here. One of my favorite DJ’s from the area, Alizay, asks K-Beta some questions that he answers in lyrical form. I wonder if they will be working on another mixtape…? I ran into Beta this weekend but haven’t seen Alizay in a long time. So seeing him on the tables in this video was definitely nice.
Elzhi is going to remake Illmatic into Elmatic by approaching the beats with live instrumentation and adding his own bars. The first leak is below, but for the details check the press release:
To say that Elzhi’s “ELmatic” has been a labor of love would be an understatement. The idea was first broached years ago by DJ House Shoes and discussed and bandied about incessantly since. Though the concept was unrealized for what seemed like ages; years went by, life got in the way, recording and touring with Slum Village got in the way and as more time passed, desperate fans continued to wait (albeit impatiently) for news and updates on the project.
Well, at last, the long wait is over, as Elzhi has finally completed “ELmatic” and the long-wait fans endured will prove to be well-worth it, as Elzhi will release the project for free on 5-10-2011 on his own site Elzhi.com; the LP is being released for free by Elzhi as a dedication to his fans for their patience.
Nas tributes have been done before, but it’s safe to say, never in the manner in which Elzhi attacks it. “ELmatic” is a game-changing effort on a few different levels, not only is it genre-defying, but it finds Elzhi in his lyrical prime and rather then expressing himself over Nas’ original instrumentals, Elzhi enlisted the famous Detroit ensemble Will Sessions (a six-piece band who has cultivated a reputation in the Detroit area for being able to meticulously replay Nas’ instrumentals from scratch and who produced the endeavor) and recorded the entire project with only live-instrumentation, which gives the project an undeniably plush and unique sound and dare we say even adds an updated flair to the original’s hall-of-fame lineup of producers. These new flourishes can be heard as Will Sessions add even more instrumental interludes (sometimes mid-track) and over special drops from artists such as Pete Rock and DJ House Shoes. While guest features are sparse, Royce 5’9 and Mint Condition’s Stokely both grace “Life’s A Bitch” and Amp Fiddler plays keyboards on “The World is Yours”.
While immersing himself into the recording of “ELmatic,” Elzhi underwent a series of professional and personal struggles that have made this project even more gratifying for him. After a nearly decade long stint as a member of the beloved group Slum Village and numerous hit singles (including “Selfish” f/Kanye West and John Legend and “Tainted” f/Dwele ) in July of 2010 Elzhi was forced to re-start his solo career after discovering a variety of unfair business practices by Slum Village’s record label and T3. These professional and personal trails and tribulations are certainly an audible under-current on “ELmatic,” as it gives the project that much more urgency and edge; and undisputable air of rebirth.
With the support of his new management by music executive and artist manager Jae Barber of The JAE.B Group and Will Sessions “ELmatic” is finally completed. With his new website and a once again flourishing solo career fans can anticipate a newly reinvigorated Elzhi and one who is anxious to share his talents with the world.
When I moved from Midwood to Bushwick, the easiest route to take while hauling many bags of shoes, clothes, etc. to the new spot took me right through Crown Heights on Utica Ave. During the day I realized this was a nightmare, as the business on Utica causes clogged traffic until the sun goes down, but this was beneficial for one main reason: I got to really browse Utica Ave’s offerings without ever having to worry about finding a parking spot. Besides some ridiculously low prices on some produce at a random fruit stand, I knew I had to come back for whatever they were grilling in those sidewalk grills with all the smoke pouring out. Of course, I knew it was jerk chicken and that I would love it by default.
“I ordered the jerk, she said you are what you eat.”
Problem is, every time I drove by during the day, there was no parking, and I had no patience. When I drove by at night, and the street was wide open to park and run in, I either had just spent way too much money in the city and didn’t feel like spending more, or I just wanted nothing more than to go home and go to sleep. Recently I finally stopped by McKenzie’s to see what amazingness they were hiding in those grills.
See that picture up there? That’s four grills filled with chicken, and you can’t see the storefront next door because of all that wonderful smoke. They’re making it properly, and the final product benefits from this. What you end up with is smoky, juicy chicken with robust spices and an amazing sauce (you can get it without sauce if you don’t like the spice). I kid you not, this place is open 24/7 year round. Year round. This is not Jamaica, this is Brooklyn, and I swear I saw these guys out grilling in January at 4am, with flashlights to see through the smoke if it got too crazy. A downside to grilling at night is that at times the meat can end up burned, so it’s still probably beneficial to hit up McKenzie’s during the daytime rush, but whatever. Late night, this is still better, and cheaper, than diner food.
Above is the jerk chicken dinner, complete with chicken, rice and peas, and salad. You get to choose what goes on top of the rice and peas, and I chose the oxtail. Truth be told, in the future I’m skipping the extra and just getting the chicken. The rest of it wasn’t mindblowing, but that smoky amazingness so conveniently close to my crib at all hours of any day? Oh hell yeah.
I intended to only eat half that particular night…let’s just say that didn’t happen. Is McKenzie’s the best jerk in Brooklyn? I’ve heard it is, but I’ve also heard that other spots are better. I don’t know, but in the vicinity of my crib, this is the shit.
It’s a beautiful day in Virginia. I’m talking like 80 degrees and sunny type shit. Where’s the BBQ at? I love how I’m going to go back to Brooklyn and it will probably be a cool 50 degrees and raining. Ugh. On to the sounds…
I told a friend to check out Blitz the Ambassador recently and one of the things I sent him was this video. Stereotype was a great fucking album. Looking forward to his new one, I believe it’s dropping in May. Happy birthday to me!
I also was discussing music with some people last night and Saigon’s new album came up in conversation. This is one of my preferred cuts off Greatest Story Never Told.