The second season of Netflix’s hit series Master of None starring restaurant enthusiast Aziz Ansari dropped last week, and the show’s co-creator Alan Yang has apparently been celebrating hard ever since. As part of Grub Street’s food diary series, Yang chronicled six days worth of whirlwind dining with plenty of big name-drops along the way.
“What you’re about to read is a description of one of the craziest series of meals I’ve ever had,” Yang writes as a PSA. “I love to eat good food, but this is not normal. You’ll see what I mean. Apologies for the absurdity in advance.”
Absurd indeed. Over the course of a week, Yang dines at more than a dozen restaurants across two cities and offers a few dining rules (“Basically, if you don’t want to share food, you can’t be my friend. Sorry.”).
In New York, it’s an 18-dish family meal at Maialino and a wrap party catered by none other than Massimo Bottura of Osteria Francescana, who made a cameo appearance in Season 2’s second episode. Yang dines and drinks at Flora Bar, Attaboy, and Great N.Y. Noodletown before jetting off to Toronto for a culinary tour led by “a struggling young, up-and-coming chef who has five James Beard Awards, two Michelin stars, 15 or so restaurants, and did a cameo on Gilmore Girls” named David Chang.
For their first meal, the actor-chef pair join restaurant critic Chris Nuttall-Smith for an understated meal at Fishman Lobster Clubhouse Restaurant partially consisting of “a gigantic 15-pound totem pole they call ‘Lobster Mountain.’” The Toronto trip then veers off to Momofuku Nikai, Momofuku Daishō, and the brand-new Grey Gardens — a restaurant helmed by Jen Agg and Chang disciple Mitch Bates.
Back in New York, the filmmaker continues his exercise in excessive celebratory consumption, but because movie stars are not like us, the following transpires by “complete surprise coincidence during a meal at Hottest Restaurant in NYC at This Very Moment, the Grill:
Dave (same Dave as weekend Dave) is there with his wife, Grace, eating with his friend Rene and his wife, Nadine. Rene used to run a small, unheralded restaurant in Denmark called Noma. I say hi to them, and we talk about dishes we enjoyed tonight.
Yang’s accidental David Chang and Rene Redzepi sightings are naturally followed by meals at El Rey and Peter Luger for a party thrown by his agency because “Hey, free steak!”
It’s no secret that Yang and his collaborator Aziz Ansari are enthusiastic diners, but his season of Master of None took the pair’s love of food and food culture to new heights. Episodes center around Ansari’s character Dev following his appreciation for pasta all the way to an apprenticeship at a restaurant in Italy. However, it seems even the shows restaurant cameos can’t live up to Yang’s real-life appetite.