By Nora Zelevansky / June 15th, 2010

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"Meatball" is my name.  Sometimes "Meathead."  Well, at least according to my father.

As is sometimes the case with such nicknames, it's hard to know whether one is being insulted or complimented.

Since I happen to LURVE meatballs, I choose to take it as a compliment.  As for "Meathead," well, that's just nonsense.

Anyway, I was psyched to arrive in NYC to discover that "The Meatball Place on the Lower East Side" is all the rage.  While it's hard for me to imagine any meatball more amazing than a Bay Cities one, I am ALWAYS up to try a tomato sauce slathered sub.  Plus, M. even mentioned the new spot before I ever even left L.A.!

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So … with that in mind, preggers Z., J., preggers S., C. & I headed to The Meatball Shop on Stanton.  Whether you're a fan of the place or you think it's over-hyped, the reality is that it's insanely popular.  The wait can be an hour long (though for us it was only 20 minutes).

We sat at the communal tables and tagged plastic menus with whiteboard markers, choosing items like a pork meatball sub on baguette with that day's special basil pesto sauce and the above beef meatball sub (held together with ricotta cheese) with classic tomato sauce (or spicy meat!) and fresh mozzarella!

There's definitely a choose your own adventure situation here: you can eat tiny one meatball-sized sliders, subs with yummy side salads or a "Smash" on a brioche bun.  I don't really do brioche buns, if I'm honest.  It's just not my thing, but the baguettes for the subs were crusty and chewy in all the right ways.

The picture I took of my pork meatball situation is sort of lackluster, but …

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In an attempt to be good to their babies, the pregnant girls had some spinach, which was not so exciting.  But the white beans with garlic bread crumbs tasted like olive oil heaven and the "Daily Greens" were delish.

We also ordered the day's special meatballs, which were corned beef and cabbage flavored (I mean, for real?) over rigatoni with classic tomato sauce–also quite good, I thought.

Of course, being a lactard, I had to pass on their famous ice cream sandwich, but the girls had one brownie sandwich with mint ice cream and one chocolate chip cookie version.  Though they all liked the cookies, they were divided on the ice cream flavor.  Z. thought it tasted really fresh and yummy, while J. & S. thought it tasted like "grass" or "a mojito."

Full disclosure: S. really doesn't like most things that are green.

Green like the envy you feel at my cool "Meatball" nickname.  You can't have it all.   But you can have a meatball or four.

xo – N.

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