After all the partying and dancing involved in the wonderful white wedding weekend in Washington, I set off to the Big Apple for a couple days with my favorite sister. For someone who had not made it to NYC before her 29th year on the planet, hitting the big city twice in two months was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. If you missed the earlier posts all about the bachelorette party weekend in September, click here and here.
We wandered, we ate and we caught up with friends made round the world all now living in Neeeew Yooooork (a la Alicia Keys).
We stayed with John via AirBnB in his fab little apartment on Thompson, which was the perfect pied a terre for exploring the city. This is my first AirBnB experience and I will definitely be doing more of it!
Here are some of the highlights from the 3 days in NYC:
Ramen at Ippudo – we went to the East Village location and it was divine! I highly recommend the Wasabi Shoyu Ramen. We hit up this place for lunch with two of my friends from Paris who I worked with educating the privileged youth of Neuilly and the 16eme in lovely Paris – since the last time I saw them, they have (1) gotten married – to each other; (2) moved to NYC from Paris; and (3) had a beautiful baby girl! A lot can happen in such a short time – to be fair, I hadn’t seen them since 2010… but still!
Asian fusion at Buddakan in the Meatpacking District – as featured in the Sex and the City movie – remember this?
Well we didn’t get the giant middle table as Big and Carey did for their rehearsal dinner, but we had a fabulous table upstairs where we indulged in the edamame dumplings, the chili rock shrimp, the hoisin glazed pork belly, the kung pao monkfish, wild mushroom chow fun and the crying chocolate for dessert (malted chocolate ganache, milk caramel and Vietnamese coffee ice cream). Oh heavens – such a fantastic meal – we got out of there for about $40 per person which wasn’t too bad either!
Italian in Little Italy at Piacere – we were wandering around Little Italy and just happened upon this little wonder – we shared the truffle bruscetta and then shared a pizza and a pasta. For our pizza we selected the Robiola Piacere (Robiola Cheese, fresh arugula, prosciutto and white truffle oil) – it was heavenly and by far the best pizza ever. We also shared the taglierini with truffles and mushrooms… as you can tell, we have a truffle problem. The pizza was definitely the highlight of the meal.
Bagels at Tompkins Square Bagels in the East Village – this little bagel gem was inspired by an instagram post I came across a few days earlier and I knew we had to make it a priority stop on our quick trip to NYC. We both picked up two bagels (one for now, one for later!) – both opting for the french toast bagel with funfetti cake cream cheese. My second one was a chocolate chip bagel with chocolate chip cookie dough cream cheese, while my favorite sister opted for something more savory.
Moscow mules at Liberty (Midtown) – and had one final meet up with the fabulous Maid of Honor.
Pumpkin Spice Latte cocktails at Houston Hall (NoHo/West Village) – where we met a friend from Paris who I worked with at Fat Tire Bike Tours and my sis invited a friend from high school who she hadn’t seen for years and years! Special shout out to social-media-stalking – it is real, we all do it and sometimes it means that you can meet up randomly with people around the world who you haven’t seen for eons.
Beer at the Standard’s year-round Beer Garden (Meatpacking) – this is a great place in the summer but as the winter months creep in, there seem to be less people in this usually bustling beer garden. It may also have been the fact that we showed up on a Monday night… whatevs. The ping pong tables are a fantastic addition to the atmosphere.
Spiced spiked hot cider at Brass Monkey (Meatpacking) –
The View – hung out with Whoopi, saw some of the eliminated Dancing with the Stars contestants, and clapped till our hands fell off. The next day they did Whoopi’s favorite things… devastating…. we walked away with a diabetes book.
The High Line – a public park built along the west side of Manhattan – it is built along an elevated freight rail line! We took advantage of the autumnal colors… obviously.
SoHo – We walked around SoHo checking all the fun stores… this will be much more fun in a few months but until then austerity prevails (kinda, sorta). And then made our way to ….
Little Italy – to check out the cannoli options…. and find dinner. I have been told that this area is a lot nicer in the summer as all the restaurants put out twinkly lights and have terraces set up. Unfortunately it was too cold for that. Will have to try again next year.
Chelsea Market and the Meatpacking District – one of our stops along the High Line – loved all the cute little stores and restaurants. Wanted to buy everything. Instead bought $1 cannoli. #compromise
Ground Zero – had to make it to Ground Zero and I am so glad we went. One World Center is a fantastic new building and the grounds/memorial at its base are beautiful.
But as soon as we arrived, tons of police and fire trucks crowded around the new building… which led to gathered crowds, everyone staring upwards and no one seeing what could be going wrong!
So we walked around the building (avoiding all the blocked streets leading to and from the memorial sight). Then we saw it…
The window-washers were stuck on the 68/69th floors when one of the cables holding them up snapped and a whole rescue mission ensued… we watched the drama from a distance and eventually read all about it online.
New York Public Library – this was a surprise stop that had to be explored when we came across it walking around the city. The obvious reason… SATC (duh).
As you can tell from our smiling faces, the cannoli and the extensive “We drank” subsection, we had a most fabulous time on our second sister vacation of 2014. Not sure how we are going to top this in 2015 but I am sure we will find a way.