Jay’s parents have been in the city for the past week with Jay’s aunt and uncle, and we have been so glad to have them. They have been a welcome break from graduate school papers, cover letters and job search databases (anyone want to hire me?!). It has been such a treat to take a break and show off our favorite spots, where we do life and the excitement our new city has to offer. Together we have taken in the arts….
Savored time with family..
and sipped and nibbled our way through the great foodie culture NYC has to offer. Below you will find a detailing of the exceptional establishments we frequented regularly and had the pleasure to share with Jay’s family over the course of the past week. So if you’re looking for a great glass of wine, exquisite italian or simply just an undeniably great craft brew to accompany your gourmet burger -look no further. What follows are some of our favorites in Manhattan.
1. The Lobby Bar at the Roosevelt Hotel
Jay’s family stays at the Roosevelt whenever they are in town, it’s location right in midtown east places it right beside grand central which means you can easily shuttle off to whatever corner of the city you desire. Their Lobby Bar, The Madison Club Lounge, has great bites and a decent wine list. However, the best part is the atmosphere so if you are looking for an Old New York establishment complete with wood paneling, rich mahogany coloring and ornate architecture this place is for you.
2. Italian at Eataly
Eataly comes to you by way of two dear girlfriends, Emily and Vanessa, who are head over heels for this particular Italian market place. So after their rave reviews, and introductions to it’s awesomeness we decided to take Jay’s mom and Aunt there for an early dinner, and to soak in the italian culture. It is a neat little venue in the heart of the Flatiron district that offers everything from a coffee shop, to a grocery store, to formal dining options to an italian chocolatier. So no matter what you are hungering for, you will find a exceptional, high quality option here. I promise.
3. The Green Table at Chelsea Market
We have been to the Green Table three times in the last three weeks. It’s that good. It’s farm to table fare and exceptional drink list is excellent for both brunch, lunch and dinner. It’s location in the heart of the Chelsea Market is equally ideal because after a stellar meal you can wander around the little artisan shops to pick up a loaf of amazing bread from Amy’s, house made ice cream from the Milk Bar or a beyond decadent cookie from Liddabit Sweets. All of which we have done …three times …in the last three weeks. It is simply amazing.
4. Fig and Olive
Confession: Most of the dining experiences I am describing come way of my friend Vanessa. She is the culinary expert who has introduced Jay and I to a good 90% of these locations and Fig and Olive was the the inaugural restaurant she exposed us to. For my pop culture friends, dining in Meat Packing is perfect for those of you wanting to attempt a Sex and the City -eque experience, since this is the district Samantha Jones inhabits in the show. Beyond the neighborhood, Fig and Olive has an extensive bar menu and an even better dinner menu. I usually stick to their seasonal Paella, or for a bit of a lighter fare their nicoise salad which packed with antioxidants in the form of seared tuna steak and farm fresh eggs. Whereas, Jay swears by their lobster salad. No matter what you can’t go wrong.
5. Franky and Johnnie’s
If you’re looking for a steak house right in the heart of Times Square, Franky and Johnnie’s is for you. My mother in law and aunt heard about if from Kelly and Michael who swear by the establishment. Make sure you make a reservation for this location though, because it is packed even for early dinners.
6. Mel’s Burger Bar
Jay and I joke that we are really more pretentious burgers and beer type people rather than Italian fine dining type of people. So sometimes you really, really, just need a good locally brewed beer and a gourmet burger. The trek up to the Upper West Side is so worth it for Mel’s Burgers. I know you have heard me go on and on about Mel’s in other posts but it is just THAT good.