A good book is always on tap; it may be decanted and drunk a hundred times, and it is still there for further imbibement. ~Holbrook Jackson
So I do read.. a lot. But I swear I have other activities as well, and these include a healthy appetite for eating and drinking. As I explore NYC, I plan to share with you the highlights of my discovered gems! Thank you for indulging.
And the list begins:
- Shoolbred’s: An East Village favorite, this bar is my go-to hangout on these cold winter evenings (afternoons, mornings…). It boasts four coveted seats by a crackling fireplace (you have to lurk, ready to pounce as soon as the seats are available) as well as a “buy one get a token for another free one” beer and well-drink special from 4-8pm every single day. Though not included in this special, they make a wonderful hot toddy (may beat my own personal recipe), delicious spinach and artichoke dip and lamb sliders. Another advantage to the flocked-velvet decor is the lack of tacky illumination due to flickering TV screens – this is moving-picture-free-zone. My corresponding book recos here.
- Garage Restaurant:
- Cube 63:
- Son Cubana: The live band playing Spanish music sets the ambiance for the Meat Packing’s Son Cubana. I have no rhythm, but after several mojitos even I could merengue! The food was fabulous (the goat cheese croquettes were to die for), and the appetizers were perfect for ordering several and sharing, allowing everyone to have a bite. (originally reviewed on my main blog)
- Revel: If you have extra cash burning a hole in your pocket, friends to impress, and/or an affinity for sparklers and bottles of wine so heavy they’re difficult to pour, this is your type of place. My first experience with what is called the “Brunch Party” in NYC’s trendy meat-packing district, this is a brunch spot filled with people trying to be someone (with the exception of yourself, obviously, just happy as you are). The sunglasses stay on long after the sun sets through the glass-topped room, which is somewhat reasonable since the sparklers adorning the very large and very costly bottles of alcohol can be bright. Dancing on chairs is both accepted and embraced, and at the 7pm closing time you’ll find yourself stumbling out the door, swearing it’s 4am. Definitely an experience.
- Allen & Delancey: A Lower East Side tapas-style small plates restaurant, it offers an ambiance that can’t be beat with food that’s underwhelming. The waitress impresses upon you the small size of each plate (without mentioning the costly price tag), which bears descriptions more mouthwatering than the taste delivered. The cocktails are delicious, so if you’re looking for a dimly-lit date spot guaranteed to improve the appearance of your dining partner (or yourself), I suggest stopping at the lovely bar for a “La Valencia” (Chamomile-infused Rye Whiskey, Manzanilla, Yellow Chartreuse, Lemon, Angostura Bitters) before skipping off to another LES gem for a meal.
- Cafe Orlin