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Ardmore Daily Ardmoreite (12/Jun/1938) - In New York



  • Ross' column was widely repeated in other US local newspapers, although some omitted the final section.


In New York

By George Ross

New York — That sound of sizzling steaks at "21" — 52nd street swank-spot — means that Alfred Hitchcock is in town.

The famous movie director is the world's greatest authority on the broiling and consumption of Texas steer: and his O.K. on a steak is the equivalent of a prize bestowed upon the fortunate chef and restaurant. If you don't, believe it, ask anyone at Simpson's in London when you get over that way.

Hitchcock's fastidious tastes are well known in that renowned restaurant by the side of the Thames. If Henry VII had not knighted a particularly choice cut of cow — and out of a full heart and full stomach — generously dubbed it "Sir Loin," Hitchcock would be the only man in London with authority to do so.


Hitchcock cabled his order for the steaks well in advance — for he is no man to take chances where so important an issue is involved. He likes his sirloins medium rare, incidentally, and insists, with a great deal of vehemence that the plate be large enough to contain the cut without overlapping. He feels about steaks much the same way he does about films — robust food, honest cooking and no loose edges. Next to steaks, his fancy runs to ice cream, which he is willing to eat before or after the main course.

The amply-girthed. Hitchcock — he weighs 272 pounds and is approximately as broad as he is long — is perhaps the best imaginable walking advertisement for food. When he seats himself before a steak, he looks pleased and so does the steak. And restaurateurs in general prick up their ears when they hear he is in town. They would like him to sample all their wares, simple and exotic, from beef-and-kidney pudding, which Hitchcock has promised to sample on this side of the Atlantic (although he is skeptical), to lamb pilaf with kasha, an Armenian luxury.

This Alfred Hitchcock is a sort of gastronomic Buddha. He attains Nirvana on a full stomach, but maintains an unruffled calm even between meals. Food pleases rather than excites him. And Broadway, on the whole, is content that he has timed his visit for the summer, when there are few openings. Because he sleeps (and snores) throughout many a stage performance. He fell asleep, as a matter of fact, during a showing of his own world-famous "The 39 Steps" — one of the most exciting films ever made.


Mrs. Hitchcock — who is in private life, Alma Reville — is accompanying him on this visit, but she won't interest the cafe crowd. For Mrs. Hitchcock is diminutive and birdlike, eats sparingly and is tolerant of, rather than interested in, her husband's major hobby — food She tips the scales at a hundredweight.

Both know more about New York than the average New Yorker — although this is only their second visit to this side. Their knowledge comes from much reading on the subject, from discussions with friends who are familiar with this city, and from the movies. They are at home on Broadway. Hitchcock knew in advance and marched with unerring aim to the hotels which serve the best steaks. He knew every show on Broadway,

which to see and which to avoid He visited, on his last trip here, police headquarters and astonished the cops by his familiarity with the Manhattan police system. He was as excited as a kid, however, when he heard his first police-car siren.