I go where very few are brave enough to go.
Tatiana's on a Saturday.
Being so far away from my family has its difficulties. I find myself constantly missing my culture, including the food, music, and of course, the parties. Russians love to party, possibly the result of years of restrictions in a communist country, and party we do, finding any excuse to dress up, consume insane amounts of fish eggs, and down bottles of vodka until the early hours of the morning.
The best part, the restaurant that caters to such shenanigans, Tatiana's, is as true as they come.
Back in my Cleveland days, I worked in a Russian restaurant. I was 16 years old and the money from being a server helped pay for my car and my budding shoe addiction. I made about $200 a weekend, which was hugely major to a teenager living in bumblefuck, but the job came with a downside.
Not to toot my own horn, but I was a very cute looking young lady, and all the boys (and some of the men) constantly hit on me, causing a ton of fights between an outspoken me and a crowd of angry girlfriends. One time, I even got in a fist fight with some bitch who thought I was sleeping with her husband, just cuz he put a $20 in my apron, and may or may not have grabbed my ass while asking for a refill on the bellini's. It wasn't pretty, but a great memory from my homewreker days.
Me with Papa Alexander
These days, the Russian restaurant scene has changed significantly. Having recently partied in Miami in the mecca of motherland celebrations, the emporium Tatiana's, I can honestly claim that the ambiance has changed, but the jealous bitches are still all there.
For about $200 a person, you can eat until your spanx give out, drink until the room begins to spin, and dance with a bunch of half naked Brit Brit impersonators singing what Carrie Underwood would deem "white trash versions of Shania-karaoke". These photos are from my niece's 10th b-day party, where the entire family shared dishes full of delicacy's like cow tongue and salmon roe which is served with warm crepes while downing bottle after bottle of Stoli.
Photos totally appropriate for a kids party below...
About 2 hours into the event (you usually arrive around 9pm) the cabaret show gets started. Performance after performance, each was more over the top than the previous, one even featuring a waterfall to accompany the heavily accented versions of J.Lo's Lets Get Loud and Mr. Saxobeat. I made a list of all the costumes I wanted to steal from the girls as something about them quickly brought me back to my days in Ukraine, where my momma dressed me like a pig-tailed doll.
My family loves these places so much, my mom actually fought to have my wedding at a place like this, saying she would front the entire bill just to see her daughter be married in such awesomeness. Even our menu of Russian/Puerto Rican food at my actual wedding didn't please her enough, she spent most of the night apologizing to the extended family about the embarrassment she felt having to remove the caviar from the friend plantains it was served with. Yup, that was fun.
Saynt loves these outings, and this year, we've decided to host his 30th birthday at Tatiana's in Brooklyn, this plan includes renting a party bus with a stripper pole to drive our friends down to Brighton Beach. Yeah, I'm a lucky woman.
The big day is not until March 13th, so don't expect photos anytime soon, but, surprise, surprise I've already got my dressed picked out.