The Best of Our New York Trip!

Two weekends ago we were in New York for the wedding of Brandon's college friend. We had a blast! (Mazel Tov to Brian and Danielle!) Obviously much of the time we were doing wedding activities, but here's some of the non-wedding-related stuff we did that we loved.
We spent most of our time on the Lower East Side, where our AirBnB was. Man, that place is FULL of yummy restaurants and fun things to do. I highly recommend it as a place to stay in Manhattan!

Oh, another thing - normally this list would also be full of bars, but unfortunately I can't drink right now (which is sad because drinking in NYC is a joy and an art form). 

Anyway. Here are all my faves!

STUFF TO DO:


Tenement Museum
http://www.tenement.org/
Me and our buddy, Dave, eating the best pickles ever!
This was the best surprise of the whole trip. Next time you're in NYC, you must go! The Tenement Museum is this terrific time capsule - it highlights and interprets the history of immigration to the Lower East Side of Manhattan. They've preserved a tenement from the 1800s, and in doing so, they've also preserved the stories of all the families that lived in there. It's super cool to see and learn about! Plus, we did a walking food tour THAT WAS AWESOME. I highly recommend it. Our super knowledgeable guide walked us around the neighborhood and explained the stages of immigration and how each group helped shape American cuisine. We got to taste pickles, bialys, dumplings, cheese, sopressata, fried plantains, and more! It was educational and delicious.


Hedwig & The Angry Inch
http://hedwigbroadway.com
Be still, my beating heart!
Oh, oh, oh. What a glorious and marvelous show! I've been obsessed with Hedwig since I saw a traveling production back in 2002 in college. I cannot believe it's now on Broadway! Michael C. Hall played Hedwig, and he totally killed it, you guys. And Lena Hall as Yitzhak! That voice - she is a powerhouse. I mean, it was everything I remembered and more and better. I sobbed during Origin of Love and at the end for Midnight Radio.

I was also thrilled because Brandon really liked it. I've made him listen to some of the songs, but he's never watched the movie or really understood the story. We both came out of the theater with the wind knocked out of us, it was such a powerful experience. That's what live theater is supposed to be like!

I highly recommend seeing this show, especially with Michael C. Hall. If you know nothing about it, watch this song and scene from the movie. It's called The Origin of Love and it's basically the theme of the whole thing. So good!

COFFEE SHOPS:


Whynot Coffee
https://www.facebook.com/whynotorchard
This is the perfect coffee shop to write in! Free wifi, comfortable seating, and they play great music. They played the full album of Graceland by Paul Simon while I was there. Between that and the tasty, flaky chocolate croissant, I almost couldn't take the perfection. I'm a real sucker for a quality chocolate croissant.

Irving Farm Coffee Roasters
http://www.irvingfarm.com/
Is this not the most lovely morning ever?
This place is adorable and delicious and delightful. I seriously had the best scone of my life here. It was rhubarb, and it was heavenly. My decaf Americano was also on point. They don't have free wifi, so I hung out with my book and enjoyed the people watching.







 

 

 

RESTAURANTS:


Beauty & Essex
http://beautyandessex.com/
When we made dinner plans to catch up with a bunch of college friends in town for the wedding, little did we know we were going to a super hip restaurant! Apparently Beauty & Essex is all the rage in NYC right now. Hidden behind a fake pawn shop exterior is a gorgeous bar and dining room with deep booths and low lighting. We ordered a lot of plates to share, and the food was plentiful and yummy. Be warned - it's a tad pricey. But we did feel like we got our money's worth; the shared plates weren't super tiny or anything.

Huertas
http://huertasnyc.com/
Happy birthday, Brandon! I love you loads and loads.
Huertas is delicious authentic Spanich cuisine with great ambiance and service. We went here for Brandon's birthday dinner. The best part - you order tapas to share at the table, and then they bring MORE trays of tapas around (sort of dim sum style) and you can pick them off a la carte if you want them. We got to try delicious morsels of everything this way!






The Meatball Shop
http://themeatballshop.com/

Oh, how I love The Meatball Shop! I mean seriously, what a great concept - come in and have as many meatballs as you want, styled in a bunch of different ways. It's great for a snack or a full meal or just to drop in for a drink. We had the buffalo chicken meatballs and cried out of happiness. Also, I may have promised the bartender Christophe we would name our baby after him if he was born on his birthday (February 19. Now you all can hold me to it.).


It was a fantastic trip! Every trip to New York is. It's such a magical city. Here are a few more pics to close out the post and give you a feel for the other things we did:


Obligatory 1:00AM pizza.
Exploring Chinatown. It was confusing.




The view from the wedding. See Lady Liberty out there? Wowzas!