A Moment of Silent For Cookum's

>> Thursday, April 05, 2007

I work one block north of City Hall, and for some reason this place becomes a cul-de-sac of office buildings and there are no good place to eat around. Sure, McDonald's is right next door, but it definitely cannot be defined as a good place to eat. Thinking clearly, nothing around is healthy. So usually I cook something extra each night and take the leftovers to work for lunch. That way, I can control what I eat and it saves me a bit of money too. Except Wednesday, Wednesday is oxtail day at Cookum's and I do love my oxtail stew.

Cookum's is a dark and dingy soul food joint with a bar attached. I think that keep the light very dim, so the alcoholic can drink all day without being recognized by their colleagues. The food is great though, fried chicken wings, fried pork chops, smothered pork chop, pepper beef, pig's feet, chitlings, collard greens, black eye peas. I'm probably the only non-black people who goes there regularly. When I step in on Wednesday, they already know I want Oxtail stew with rice and cabbage. When I step in on other weekdays, they know I want fried pork chops. You can't this kind of service any other place. The sense of community is really strong too, they put up a poster on your birthday, and they organize a trip down to Maryland every year for the crab feast.

When I tell other people about eating oxtails, so would shun while others acts repulsed. Growing up in Hong Kong, oxtail is something common that we usually see in local eateries. Oxtail soup mostly, with celery, tomatoes and potatoes mostly. But then I won't eat chitlings or pig's feet, I guess to each our own kryptonites.

Yesterday, when I pass by cookum's hoping for oxtail, I found out that the owner sold their liquor license and the store to somebody else, so they are closing the shop down now. The cook told me maybe the new owner will reopen the shop in a few months, but who knows if they will be selling the same food. I can understand why the owner would sell the place, it's really not in a residential area and their business at night might be suffering. But I hope they reopen and sell the same kind of food and I hope they renovate the whole place to make it brighter, more welcoming. I'm sure if they do that, they'll have to jack the price up but I'm already missing my oxtail.

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