5@5 - John McDonald
June 13th, 2011
05:00 PM ET
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5@5 is a daily, food-related list from chefs, writers, political pundits, musicians, actors, and all manner of opinionated people from around the globe.

Sharing is caring? Not when it's crazy delicious.

When it comes to certain foods, we all have our selfish moments. Whether it's a rustic slice of carrot cake or the slightly more refined sea urchin toast, if someone tries to extend a fork in the general direction of your plate, they might well lose a finger - and a friend - in the process.

John McDonald, the restaurateur behind New York City's Lure Fishbar, MercBar and Burger & Barrel, knows the feeling.

Now, back away slowly and no one gets forked.

Five Dishes I Won't Share with Anyone: John McDonald

1. The uni jalapeño on toast at Jean-Georges (New York, New York)
"Of all the fine-dining restaurants and their tasting menus, this particular item is one of my absolute favorites. It's regularly only part of the Jean-Georges side of the room, but when I'm on the Nougatine side, their casual dining room, I always ask for it.

It's pretty much a two biter, so there is zero chance at someone getting one of the two."

2. L'Entrecôte and fries at Le Relais de l'Entrecôte (Paris, France)
"I first went to this mother-daughter owned spot when I spent my last college summer studying in Paris. The good thing is that you order how you personally want your meat and they bring it to you off platters along with fresh fries and then extra sauce to cover both the meat and fries.

About half the time, I have to order a second full serving of the meat and always a chilled red to go along on a summer day."

3. Marinara pizza at Pizzeria Bianco (Phoenix, Arizona)
"I was raised in Phoenix and anytime I am back this is one of the must-go spots. The marinara with simple tomato sauce, oregano and garlic is perfection. I don't know what makes it that much better — the dough, the oven — but whatever it is, it's magic.

It's so light that its the perfect appetizer for one. Sometimes I get a side of prosciutto and throw it on top. There is always a wait for a table and it's in downtown Phoenix, but worth the trip and the wait."

4. Roast pork sandwich at Faicco's Pork Store (New York, New York)
"This is by far the sandwich that I crave the most and will not share. They roast pork loin daily and I try to catch it when it's fresh out of the oven. I go with a seedless long roll and they carve out some of the inside to make the meat sit better. A huge portion of pork is then joined by cheese, tomato, a thin layer of lettuce, mayo and mustard and a splash of their house dressing.

These guys make sandwiches with both love and precision — never sloppy, never one side uneven with ingredients. It's a pretty big sandwich and it takes a good 20-minute session to finish it.

And if no pork is on that day, go with their rare roast beef, a close second."

5. Mutton chop at Keen's Chophouse (New York, New York)
"First of all, anyone that has not been here must go. It's a legit classic, amazing historical architecture with a bunch of great rooms. While they have solid steaks and steakhouse-related items, the real get is the Double Mutton Chop, a huge chop from a mature sheep.

For anyone that loves lamb and wants a new thing to put on rotation, this guy is the one. Special note: be sure to check out the collection of clay pipes, by the thousands, that hang on the ceiling of the main room and the notables that have signed them."

How do you feel about sharing plates? Is there a food you won't share? Share (heh) your comments below.

Is there someone you'd like to see in the hot seat? Let us know in the comments below and if we agree, we'll do our best to chase 'em down.

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Filed under: 5@5 • Best in Life • Think

soundoff (102 Responses)
  1. Meskine

    You can spit on the flag. You can talk ugly about my Momma. But if you even think about pointing your fork at my Puebla Platter from El Fenix, I will rip your arm off at the shoulder and beat you to death with the wet end of it.

    June 16, 2011 at 9:31 pm |
  2. Eliza

    The best part of really good food is sharing it with someone you love!

    June 15, 2011 at 5:47 pm |
  3. BC

    I order food with the expectation of taking half of it home with me – the portions are so large that I can eat the leftovers for lunch or dinner the next day. Some food tends to taste better the next day too. Sharing just isn't an option for me and I hate being put on the spot when someone asks for a bite. There just isn't a gracious way to decline that kind of request.

    I'm also an incredibly picky eater – not picky like a kid who won't eat their vegetables but more like, there are few foods that I find appealing. So it's uncomfortable for me when I have no interest in what my dining companion is eating yet they want to try half my plate. I honestly have nothing against food sharing but it just isn't for me.

    June 14, 2011 at 9:15 pm |
    • TusseyMussey

      BC, I am the same way. There are few options on a menu that actually appeal to me. I certainly don't want to give half of that up and receive a portion of something I'd never order in return. This has happened several times when I've been out to eat in groups...no discussion prior to ordering, but when the food comes everyone suddenly thinks swapping portions is a great idea. No. It's not actually.

      June 14, 2011 at 10:45 pm |
  4. LP

    If I am presented with a really good Oma's-style (for you Saratoga Springs, NY, natives) eggplant parmesan sub, nobody else is getting any . . .

    June 14, 2011 at 7:15 pm |
  5. Michael

    If something's really great, sharing it only increases the enjoyment. After all, you can always buy more than one! There's no food in this world that's worth as much as the experience of sharing something great with friends.

    June 14, 2011 at 5:09 pm |
  6. Soleada

    I wont share my dad's homemade spaghetti or his steaks, nor will i share my mom's pot roast or homemade fudge. These foods are a sacred treat that I only get to enjoy 2x a year if I'm lucky.

    June 14, 2011 at 4:48 pm |
  7. Rebecca

    Angelo's Bar-b-que beef sandwich in Fort Worth, TX with an icy mug of cold draft beer. Everybody else just better get their own. And to tell the truth – I don't think anybody else in that place shares.

    June 14, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
  8. Lori

    A piggy po-boy from Antone's Original in Houston! I don't get to have one often and it is just TOO GOOD to share!

    June 14, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
  9. Erik Schaefer

    I like food vendor on side of street in Bangkok. They good and spicy to. Have crab rangon and noodle sup. Hmmmmmm

    June 14, 2011 at 3:50 pm |

    There's a Greek restaurant on A1A in Ft. Lauderdale called "Greek Island". Whenever I am flying down to Lauderdale my mouth starts to salivate thinking of their Greek salad, Lamb chops, Saganaki and the greek yogurt with walnuts and honey....OMG! I wish I could go right now. The best I have ever had! AMEN!

    June 14, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
    • Jerv

      Holy lamb chops, that does sound fantastic!

      June 14, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
  11. It's not that serious

    I won't share my opinion. :)

    June 14, 2011 at 2:41 pm |
    • Matt

      LOL! Why not? Every other turd on this planet does.

      June 14, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
      • Becky@Matt

        Every third turd

        June 14, 2011 at 2:51 pm |
  12. Sue

    Chicken with white bbq sauce and mac&cheese at Dixie Bones in Woodbridge, VA. Yummy food with a low price.

    June 14, 2011 at 1:05 pm |
    • Amy TH

      Sue – You are NOT kidding!!! I am willing to sit in traffic for that sauce (on pulled pork though) and that mac and cheese!!! But now everyone knows... oh noooooooo!

      June 14, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
      • Sue

        Are you aware that VDOT might kick Dixie Bones out of their current location? My advice – get your fill of Dixie Bones now ...

        June 14, 2011 at 4:58 pm |
  13. Pierce

    Bacon...won't share bacon!

    June 14, 2011 at 12:00 pm |
    • Mare@Pierce

      That's why you cook double the amount you need.

      For example, I'm making BLTs for dinner tonight – just hubby and myself, but I'll make 2 lbs of bacon. Nice sandwich, and extra for 'sampling'. :)

      June 14, 2011 at 12:48 pm |
      • Karpa

        Then that's not really "sharing"...that's cooking enough for the two of you.

        June 14, 2011 at 1:49 pm |
      • Matt@Karpa

        Seems to me Mare is suggesting to cook double the amount so Pierce can share. Just sayin'...

        June 14, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
  14. Elizabeth

    I was so happy to see Le Relais d'Entrecote listed. I'm used to these lists focusing on the unattainable, $500 dinner experiences, but my mom and I wandered into this place when we went to Paris for my spring break in Paris about 10 years ago. Super-reasonable and low-key dining experience. We loved that we didn't have to make a decision and the steak and pommes frites have become the standard by which we gauge all steak and frites! I even forced my vegetarian sister to go there with me 3 years later :)

    June 14, 2011 at 11:03 am |
  15. I want da gold!

    Wow, the selfishness of you people is pathetic.

    June 14, 2011 at 10:23 am |
    • RichardHead

      Weinerschnitzel chili dogs in Yo face!! Hahahahahahaha! Yes,I will share a 10 pak.

      June 14, 2011 at 10:26 am |
      • I want da gold!

        Thanks for the offer and being generous but I just threw up in my mouth a little thinking of those nasty chili dogs. My bile tastes better than that crap.

        June 14, 2011 at 11:11 am |
    • Goober Grape@I want da gold!

      What's selfish about it? With a screen name like yours, I would think you'd wanna keep your food where you keep your gold. Oh that's right – my bad. You don't actually have the gold yet.

      June 14, 2011 at 10:30 am |
      • I want da gold!

        What's selfish about "I won't share this with anyone."? Really? I'd gladly share any food of mine with my family and friends. Your mama sure failed you.

        And no, I don't got da gold. Da leprechaun up in da tree got da gold. I want dat gold! Da leprechaun being selfish too!

        June 14, 2011 at 11:10 am |
      • I got dat gold!@I want da gold!

        "Da leprechaun up in da tree got da gold. I want dat gold! Da leprechaun being selfish too!" LMAO!

        June 14, 2011 at 11:14 am |
  16. I want da gold!

    Selfish snob.

    June 14, 2011 at 10:20 am |
    • I got dat gold!

      No, he jest wants all dat goooold!

      June 14, 2011 at 10:23 am |
  17. JR

    Lobster tail w/drawn butter. Not a chance anyones getting a bite.

    June 14, 2011 at 9:41 am |
    • Karpa

      I'd be hard pressed to share that, too. But it would depend on who I'm having my meal with.

      June 14, 2011 at 1:51 pm |
  18. Dont eat my

    Tagalongs, a good burger and fires, and there is some beer I will not share. This guys list is way over my head come down to my level and I would like to see what middle class foods he would not share.

    June 14, 2011 at 9:25 am |
  19. Jeb-on-a-stump-eating-my-ear-wax

    I buy ma a food I eatta ma food.

    June 14, 2011 at 9:17 am |
    • space frog

      u gonna share that ear wax?

      June 14, 2011 at 9:26 am |
  20. bubbahu?

    i will not share food with anyone. i do not want their nasty saliva dripping from fork /spoon/ to my plate of food . that is worse then double dipping !

    June 14, 2011 at 9:13 am |
    • Matt

      Do you stick your tongue in someones mouth when you kiss?

      June 14, 2011 at 9:15 am |
    • Mildred

      How my fiance and I normally do it is we start with setting aside a small part on our plates for the other to try. Then again, we *are* engaged, so I think swapping a little saliva is a given. ;)

      For friends sharing appetizers or from larger dishes, if there's not extra utensils to make a serving utensil possible, we ask for more forks/spoons until we have enough.

      June 14, 2011 at 9:16 am |
  21. AGeek

    The sharing of different foods is, to me, my family, and our friends, a wonderful way of allowing everyone to experience a little bit of a wide variety of foods. We've done it since before we had kids and the kids started once they were on solid foods. Our kids will eat darn near anything now. We feel it brings a more complete, wonderful sharing experience to our friendships as well. The one rule? Don't eat off someone else's plate. Ask for anything you want, hold out your side plate, and it will be happily placed on *your* plate for you. If something is *particularly* good, we can (almost) always get a second order! ..though, there was that one time with some amazing e-dako....

    June 14, 2011 at 9:07 am |
  22. Mildred

    To the non-sharers: If you sit down and the rule is no-sharing, I can understand keeping the food to yourself. But if you and a person agree to try some of each other's meal, I expect to not get speared in the process.

    It does seem like it's mostly a couple-thing to share but sometimes you will see a table of friends that deliberately order dishes to pass around (and that's usually when it's a larger group, that way you can order a few big dishes instead of a bunch of small ones and ultimately save $).

    June 14, 2011 at 8:29 am |
    • MalaDee@Mildred

      Agreed. People I've just met have helped themselves to my plate. That's beyond rude to me. By the same token, I've gone out with friends where we've agree to share appetizers.

      It's all about communication.

      When Hubby & I go out and we order different things, if one of us shows interest in the other's food, we'll offer up a taste. Otherwise we keep our forks to ourselves.

      June 14, 2011 at 8:37 am |
      • Mildred

        I agree- just helping yourself to a taste without asking is beyond rude. So is asking and not waiting for an affirmative reply.

        June 14, 2011 at 8:42 am |
  23. rick

    probably can't afford to go to any of the places named, who cares?

    June 14, 2011 at 8:19 am |
    • Mildred

      Well, are there places you can afford to go to where you love a dish so much that you won't share it?

      June 14, 2011 at 8:35 am |
  24. Alka

    My husband and I always share. To me, if he doesn't get to taste it then its as good as not eating it... if its one of two bite appetizer, or sips off the wine I ordered. Dining is an experience and it can only get better if you share.

    June 14, 2011 at 8:09 am |
  25. carol

    On the rare occasions that I can find a perfect ripened mango, I will not share one bite. For me, mangoes are the ultimate fruit.

    June 14, 2011 at 7:59 am |
  26. Loriel

    Pretty much the only thing I hate to share is my emergency stash of Nutella!

    June 14, 2011 at 7:26 am |
    • melissa

      I agree my husband and I have seperate Nutella jars with our names clearly labeled...and not the small jars

      June 14, 2011 at 9:20 am |
  27. Bama Belle

    I absolutely will not share baked macaroni & cheese with anyone but u can't get it at any restaurant & around our house dressing is a year round dish but you can't get it at any restaurant either. Some of the best foods are cooked at home with love and family all around

    June 14, 2011 at 6:38 am |
  28. C Murdock

    Wow. The author looks like a regular guy, but he's actually an insufferable snob. McDonald, find something worthwhile to write about.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:08 am |
    • Slim

      Jezuz Krist people, lighten up.

      June 14, 2011 at 7:15 am |
    • Karpa

      It was worthwhile. You read it AND you commented on it.

      June 14, 2011 at 1:59 pm |
  29. Carnie Vore

    If you reach for my plate, prepare to get forked. You want some? Should have ordered it.

    June 14, 2011 at 5:08 am |
    • MalaDee@Carnie Vore

      Amen. This goes for S.O.'s, friends, family and God. Take anything off my plate and you will win a fork in the back of your hand.

      There is no certain food I would or wouldn't share. If you ask for a taste, I'll cut off a chunk so you can try it.

      June 14, 2011 at 7:11 am |
  30. StandUpFan

    Kaddo Borani at any Helmand location - Baltimore or SF. Baked baby pumpkin with yogurt and ground beef sauce. We always order as many portions as their are diners. No one expects to share.

    June 13, 2011 at 9:51 pm |
  31. deepsouth

    Screw you. If you want what I'm having, you should have ordered it. And no, I don't want any of that swill you ordered.

    June 13, 2011 at 8:57 pm |
  32. Charlotte

    Any time I get a sushi plate, it's mine ALL MINE!!!! 'm also unwilling to share a really good French Onion Soup.

    June 13, 2011 at 8:20 pm |
  33. The_Mick

    Baltimore's Best Crabcake is at G&M's, an inexpensive but excellent restaurant – not too far from BWI Airport for those passing through. In a town where a restaurant's reputation is made or broken on the quality of is crabcakes and Crab Imperial, G&M's won many local awards. And in Baltimore you're talking about the cake being mostly lump crab meat with a little filler. The perfectly mildly-spiced crabcakes are near softball sized (fried or broiled) and the double-crabcake platter is not much more expensive than single – many take one home in a doggy bag. When the waitress brings the platters (most pick fries and coleslaw as their sides) the eyes and smiles light up the whole table.

    June 13, 2011 at 7:55 pm |
    • Ryan

      Amen to that! I've taken the extra crabcake home many times. For the folks around Baltimore, By the Docks in Middle River and Timbuktu Restaurant in Hanover are owned by the same people with pretty much the same fare.

      June 14, 2011 at 8:54 am |
    • Karpa

      Those crab cakes are amazing. Anyone who goes there and doesn't order their own shouldn't ask to share.

      June 14, 2011 at 1:57 pm |
  34. Nina

    "JOEY DOESN'T SHARE FOOD!" (remember that episode of Friends?)

    June 13, 2011 at 7:52 pm |
    • Linney

      If no one had posted this, I was going to. I actually say this line when my husband tries to steal some of what I won't share.

      June 13, 2011 at 8:42 pm |
  35. nycgrl71

    future interviews – Steve Hanson of B.R. Guest; Gail Simmons of Food & Wine/Top Chef Just Desserts

    June 13, 2011 at 7:43 pm |
  36. amy

    A bowl of Rai Rai Ken's Japanese curry, I drive all the way from south Jersey to New York for that yummy goodness and no one (not even my husband) gets a bite of it! lol

    June 13, 2011 at 7:36 pm |
  37. Philip Hades

    In old town Alexandria VA there's a great Greek place called Taverna Kretekou. Generally my wife and I share everything, but there we boht order our won plate of saganaki. pan fried cheese served en flambe at your table. Simple and AMAZING stuff. Great on bread with olive oil, or fresh tomato, or a little squirt of lemon.

    June 13, 2011 at 7:20 pm |
    • Mildred

      Well, I can understand if you each get the same thing, you can keep your order to yourself. :)

      And for good saganaki or halloumi, I can believe it!

      June 14, 2011 at 8:22 am |
      • Philip Hades

        At many restaurants we just order a variety of appetizers and share. It's like tapas anywhere!

        June 14, 2011 at 4:11 pm |
  38. Sam Meyer

    They have Entrecote restaurants - run by varying branches of the original family, but the food and concept is the same - in London and New York, too.

    June 13, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
  39. Conrad Shull

    Can you say nauseatingly f***ing, pretentious?

    June 13, 2011 at 7:07 pm |
    • Philip Hades

      What, you expected him to say fries at Micky D's, endless soup salad and bread sticks at Olive Garden?

      June 13, 2011 at 7:18 pm |
    • VegetariansTasteGood

      Yeah, I'd like the seafood combo at Red Lobster... Just get your White Castle sack and leave us alone.

      June 13, 2011 at 7:43 pm |
    • wayne

      Taste buds not working?

      June 14, 2011 at 4:43 am |
    • GiveMeABreak

      I totally agree Conrad Shull, I was thinking something along the lines of a particular flavor ice cream, Mom's stuffed bell peppers, the hole in the wall that makes this thing that ****ing awesome...

      Not crap from France or from places that require special characters to type the names correctly...

      June 14, 2011 at 4:59 pm |
  40. BIll

    I totally agree with #2 Le Relais d'Entrecote in Paris – a second serving of meat is required! Too bad they stop at two servings of Entrecote.

    June 13, 2011 at 6:43 pm |
  41. JBJingles

    My husband and I always go in with sharing in mind also, and sometimes his is soooo much better I keep reaching in for more, but he doesn't mind and often will switch entrees with me! Sadly, I can't think of any one thing that I absolutely would not share.

    June 13, 2011 at 6:06 pm |
    • JB's Husband

      JB – this is your husband...and I absolutely hate it when you eat off my plate. The only reason I sometimes switch plates with you is so that I can acutally eat something and not have you eat my food and your food too!

      June 14, 2011 at 11:58 am |
      • Matt@JBs Husband

        Skrew you Shirley!

        June 14, 2011 at 12:00 pm |
      • JB's Husband


        June 14, 2011 at 12:06 pm |
      • Jerv@JBs Husband

        Why the hell would you want to say something nasty to someone you don't even know? Do you even have anything positive or constructively critical to say about the post?

        June 14, 2011 at 12:09 pm |
      • Conan the Barbarian@JB's Shirley

        You need to pick on someone your own size. I'm sure there are microbes deep in the ocean that could use a good beating. Run along now.

        June 14, 2011 at 12:11 pm |
      • JB's Husband

        Wow, you people really need to lighten up....it wasn't nasty...i didn't say "you fat slob stop eating my food", that would have been mean. It was meant as a joke. You know, ha, ha, ho, ho? Touchy touch are we?

        June 14, 2011 at 12:15 pm |
      • JB's Husband

        AND btw, who is Shirley??

        June 14, 2011 at 12:17 pm |
      • Odie@JB's Hubby

        I would be happy to share my plate with you! So glad that you like Fancy Feast.

        June 14, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
      • Conan the Barbarian@JB's Shirley

        Take the hint. Not funny. It was angry, bitter and vindictive. And not funny.

        Someday, when you grow up, you'll learn what is funny and what is not.

        June 14, 2011 at 12:22 pm |
      • Conan the Barbarian@Odie

        Don't dogs eat turds? Odie, please be nice and share with "Shirley"

        June 14, 2011 at 12:23 pm |
      • Matt@JBs Husband

        Shirley-U-Jest is a frequent poster here. You sounded just like her. Sorry if I did not get the joke but based on this " so that I can acutally eat something and not have you eat my food and your food too!" it sounded like you were trying to insinuate that she is a fat stooge of a slob. Blog on!

        June 14, 2011 at 12:26 pm |
      • JB's Husband

        @Matt – This is probably my third time posting on CNN and I did not know about Shirley, so I didn't get it. "I" thought it was funny, aparently other posters did not.

        @Conan – angry, bitter and vindictive? Seriously? Wow, you need some help.

        June 14, 2011 at 12:33 pm |
      • Jerv@JBs Husband

        Well, don't go away. If I misunderstood you, my apologies.

        June 14, 2011 at 12:40 pm |
      • JBJingles@Dear Husband

        Your failed attempt at humor has you in the dog house dear. I told you not to post on the internets!

        June 14, 2011 at 12:42 pm |
      • Conan the Barbarian@JB's husband

        Help?!! I need help from no one but Doom! You have no say about Conan's help!

        June 14, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
      • RichardHead@JB's Husband

        I got your dinner swinging right here asshole. Need a napkin with that?

        June 14, 2011 at 3:49 pm |
  42. Mildred

    My fiance and I share food all the time. Usually when we order a meal together it's with the mind of "I'd like to try a bite of yours (too)."

    And always, no matter what I want to do after tasting my food, I follow through and share.

    June 13, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
    • Philip Hades

      Wife and I are the same. We're big believers in "we can always order more!"

      June 13, 2011 at 7:15 pm |
      • sheryl

        What at terrible article. Won't share! You can always get more. I think this is a lousy way to say the food is great!. Just shows the greed and selfishness on people!

        June 14, 2011 at 6:52 am |
      • Jorge

        Sheryl, the food I will not share is the food I eat when I do not know where or when my next meal will come from. Not selfishness, wisdom.

        June 14, 2011 at 8:53 am |
      • Average Joe

        Jorge, since you didn't write the article I'm not sure what she said applies to you but anyways, if the author is eating at the places mentioned above I'm guessing he may worry about where his next meal comes from but never when because he can afford to eat whenever the heck he feels like it.

        June 14, 2011 at 10:13 am |
  43. Truth

    There is a Thai lady who has a food cart in downtown Denver, who makes UNBELIEVABLY great crab cheese wontons. Even better than Bride's and that is saying something. I would NEVER share them.

    June 13, 2011 at 5:08 pm |
    • BeerBrewerDan

      I was there for the Great American Beer Fest last September. This woman makes phenomenal food, period. When she says "spicy" she means it. Yum!

      June 14, 2011 at 12:57 pm |
    • milehigh5280

      Agreed! Her food is UHH-MA-ZING!

      June 14, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
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