I recently took my first trip to The Big Apple. Okay, that is a baby lie. Once, I went for a day trip when I was 20 with my cousin who lived in Connecticut. We took the train and walked around the city for hours. We couldn’t rub two nickels together.
So, in all fairness, I recently took my first adult trip to The Big Apple. The trip was a last minute opportunity courtesy of my husband’s job. Tony was scheduled to work in NYC on Monday and Tuesday and I decided to RELISH (wise advice from Bryce) my free time before starting my career. We booked early flights Saturday morning and we were checked-in to our midtown hotel in time for our first brunch.
The first thing we did in the city was go to brunch. This pretty much sums up our life priorities. Thalia’s brunch menu included unlimited wine and mimosas. Welcome to NYC!
Our second brunch was at Agave. I enjoyed two poached eggs on brioche bread with salmon and spinach from the pre-fixed menu, which also included a two hour bottomless choice of mimosa, wine or Agave Traditional margarita.
*If you are ever looking for a Brunch spot in NYC I recommend using the Brunch Gang NYC Blog. They categorize brunch spots by neighborhood. Apparently, brunchin’ is a big pastime in the city. You can find their review of Agave here.
On Monday, I spent most of the day walking the streets solo. Tony was working so I was on my own. I googled “vegan bakery” (obviously) and promptly (2 miles later) ended up at Vegan Divas. The carrot cake changed my life.
Peacefood Cafe was recommended from a friend who is now a NYC local. I have to agree with her review, it is in fact the best vegan food, ever! The chickpea fries (bottom left corner) are pillars of culinary greatness.
When you refuse to take a taxi or the subway, you end up a hungry wayfaring tourist. Tony and I walked by this little corner gem: Nish Nush. It was a falafel fan’s dream world. We ended up sharing a vegan smorgasbord, a.k.a the falafel trio.
Rosa Mexicano was okay. I love Mexican cuisine and had very high expectations. When Tony and I arrived at the restaurant we noticed the prices were a little higher than desired. But we decided to stay, because well, sometimes you are paying for the experience and we had a lovely patio table at sunset. Overall: poor service, slow kitchen, good food, lovely atmosphere.
Kodama Sushi reminded me why I will never be 100% vegan. We ate dinner at Kodama the first night we were in town. I thought about going back for every single meal thereafter. It is also very affordable, like shockingly.
When we weren’t eating, we were watching Broadway shows, exploring the different districts, walking through Central Park, and holding our nose. No offense to the NYC locals, but why do so many people smoke? Isn’t it like $15 dollars for a pack of cigarettes? The cruel combination of cigarette smoke, thick layers of smoggy pollution, and trash juice in the streets quickly put a dent in any glamorized idea of permanently relocating to Manhattan!
Despite its bad hygiene, NYC was everything I expected: a prolific amount of charismatic restaurants, a curious culture, and a compelling theatre community. I will be back — armed with hair perfume and a gas mask.
Times Square and smelly air,