March 20, 2013
It’s been awhile since I’ve stayed in my own neighborhood, but this past weekend I decided to venture uptown to Five Lamps Tavern. Located in close proximity to Columbia University, this whole area is buzzing with great places. While their food is pretty standard pub fare, they have an impressive craft beer list, and fantastic back garden space. Although the snow stopped us from a seat at the picnic table, next time around I’m hoping for more spring-like temps.
February 15, 2013
Last weekend we saw our first significant snowfall in awhile. There’s nothing quite like waking up on a Saturday morning and venturing through the neighborhood as the sledders, skiers and snowshoers come out and transform Central Park into a great outdoor adventure. Feeling a bit lazy by the afternoon, I pulled together a meal for the apartment to enjoy thanks to Zabars. It included a couple pastas to warm us up– pesto and three cheese with mushrooms, our favorite rosemary bread with sun-dried tomato tofu spread and a side of asparagus.
February 3, 2013
If you’re in New York and craving some fast food, you should make a stop at one of the quintessential burger joints of the city, Shake Shack. The other day I opted for their Smoke Shack burger– including cheese, applewood smoked bacon and peppers. About to get a milkshake for dessert, once I laid eyes on the Mast Brothers chocolate bar made just for Shake Shack, I had to splurge and try out the latest from my favorite Brooklyn chocolatiers instead. It was well worth the $9 for the delicious dark chocolate blend with earthy notes of cranberry and cinnamon, and of course the adorable packaging and artwork certainly helped sway my decision.
Happy Super Bowl Sunday! x
November 17, 2012
It’s a beautiful start to the weekend, and I’m thrilled to say that I’m staying local and enjoying the city. With the cooler season just upon us, one of my favorite ways to pass the hours on a Saturday afternoon around the Upper West Side is to take a glimpse around the Natural History Museum and go across the street to the New York Historical Society for lunch. A huge fan of the decor, they combine perfectly the look of a traditional home dining room with a modern flair. Our recent visit left us a little too full for lunch hour, but the food was just too good to not indulge.
May 9, 2012
New food surprises are constantly popping up around the Upper West Side, and my latest favorite is Say Cheese, another one of those farm-to-table concept places I love so much. Stopping by this take-out stand to do a little taste test one afternoon, we tried three of their gourmet grilled cheeses including the candied bacon/gruyere, the parmesan/swiss/truffle and the swiss/gruyere/apple compote. All perfect combos for a killer sandwich. For dessert, they were kind enough to bring out a toasted marshmallow and nutella, and lastly, we couldn’t leave without trying the snow cone flavor of the day: organic strawberry with balsamic glaze. Run by the catering company, Scoozi Events, I was a huge fan of their decor, feeling like I was just transported to a family-owned country stand on a farm, far from the middle of Manhattan.
April 2, 2012
Famously known for Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks’ meeting in You’ve Got Mail, the Upper West Side’s Cafe Lalo has always been a favorite of mine, and quite honestly am surprised I’ve waited this long to feature it. Not only do they have great brunch options, but their large selection of cheesecakes and other desserts makes it a great late night stop as well. With it’s Euro-feel, it’s the perfect spot to go on a warm spring day when the floor to ceiling windows are open, and you can people-watch the sidewalks below.
November 23, 2011
I’ve been meaning to feature Recipe, a favorite restaurant of mine, that brings some of the best rustic, local farm cuisine to the city. Barely large enough to seat more than 20 or so guests, it lends to an intimate dining experience. Although I tend to grab it to go, I highly recommend waiting for a seat. You can tell they paid extra attention to styling details to give it that rustic farm meets city chic vibe. I was recently tempted to try their special of the day, the bleu cheese quiche, with a side of sautéed swiss chard and kale.
November 7, 2011
This weekend my friend Kelly was here, and we ran around town (literally) for 2 days doing all sorts of fun activities like wedding dress shopping and cheering on our friends running the NYC Marathon. With little time to spare, Island Burgers and Shakes was the perfect quick stop for a delicious and filling meal on Saturday afternoon. Difficult to choose from the never-ending menu, we went with the Mona Lisa Churasco, a grilled chicken sandwich with mozzarella, pesto, sauteed onions, mushrooms, roasted peppers and Parmagiana reggiano on ciabatta. And I had the Roma Churasco, grilled chicken with thyme, rosemary, garlic, oregano and red pepper.
October 6, 2011
This adorable cafe planted itself conveniently just on the corner of my apartment a little over a year ago, yet it wasn’t until my vegan roommate introduced me to their delicious food that I became a regular. One of my favorite snacks happen to be their chickpea fries with home cream dressing, and I hate to admit, but their homemade vegan brownie bites are usually consumed at least 3 times a week for dessert.
September 29, 2011
Now that I’m back for some good old NYC cuisine, I decided go to Gazala’s, a small family-owned restaurant that I’ve been meaning to check out since they opened their new Upper West Side location. I admit, I had never heard of Druze cuisine, but it happens to be a religious community found in Lebanon, Syria, Israel and Jordan, that is comparable to the standard Middle Eastern fare. Known to be the most authentic tastes of this kind around town, their brunch was delicious and conveniently located across from my favorite Sunday market.