First Wave of Tebowmania Hits New York Food Scene

By: Michael Engle

At the peak of Lin-sanity, proprietors throughout New York City created new menu items to celebrate New York Knicks point guard Jeremy Lin. Naturally, these offerings, such as "Taste the Lin-sanity" frozen yogurt and the Lin-Burger, paid homage to Lin's Asian ancestry and were christened with eponymous food puns. One such item was Baohaus' "Te-Bao," which is a dumpling stuffed with a Taiwanese-style curry-spiced fried pork chop. The name "Te-Bao" evokes not only Lin's Chinese heritage, but a comparison to fellow athlete, Christian, and media sensation Tim Tebow, then of the Denver Broncos. Nobody had any idea how prescient this name would be, since Tim Tebow was recently traded to the New York Jets. No matter whether Tebow delivers improbable gridiron magic or infamously atrocious passes for the Jets, he has already made his mark on the New York food scene.

Carnegie Deli is no stranger to welcoming marquee New York athletes to its menu with tongue-in-cheek ingredient choices. For instance, Carnegie's Melo sandwich specifically includes bacon (hoping that Carmelo Anthony would bring home the bacon for the New York Knicks) and Russian dressing (as a mocking gesture towards New Jersey Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov, who failed to acquire the former Denver Nugget). In order to adapt the "Jetbow" deli creation to Tebow's clean-cut, young, and All-American image, the Carnegie Deli chose American cheese instead of New York deli meats' more typical mate--Swiss cheese. Furthermore, as a nod to Tebow's unprecedented on- and off-field nature, this namesake sandwich, for the first time in Carnegie Deli history, is not served on rye bread with mustard, by default. Instead, the corned beef, pastrami, and roast beef creation is book-ended by white bread with mayonnaise.

Remarkably, these New York developments do not represent Tebow's first effects on local food and beverages. The "bone luge," which is a shot of liquor (usually bourbon) served "bong-style" via a marrow bone, is a relatively popular fad on the west coast--especially in Portland, OR. Naturally, Denver residents had their own variation of this party stunt: by performing the bone luge with one knee on the ground, they invented the "T-Bone Luge." Whether or not the "T-Bone Luge" were to gain momentum here in New York, is yet to be seen.

Photo: OPEN Sports

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