New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of
There's nothin' you can't do
Now you're in New York
These streets will make you feel brand new
Big lights will inspire you
Let's hear it for New York, New York,
It has been common knowledge that I lived in New York City in 2011. It is also common knowledge that it is one of my favorite cities. So, when my brother called me up a few months ago asking me to go with him to New York for his spring break, I was requesting PTO the next day! It had been over two years since I had been to The City - the last time I was there was when I was moving back to Chicago. l was ecstatic to know that within just a few months I would be back in Manhattan.
As I prepared for the trip to New York, clearly this including binge watching How I Met Your Mother, I was so excited to see some familiar sights, as well as check out things that hadn't been around when I lived there. Going back to the Upper West Side and enjoying brunch at Good Enough to Eat was an absolute definitely. I had lived above a bar, just like HIMYM, and next to a little restaurants that served the most amazing brunch. As I got off the 1 line at Broadway and 79th, Erik and I walked over to Amsterdam and north towards my old stomping ground. George Keeley still stood there in all its glory. But Good Enough to Eat? Where the hell was it? The windows had been covered in brown paper. Had this Upper West Side staple fallen just like the New York staple H&H Bagels? It felt as though a small part of me had disappeared. (I later found out, aka right now as I write this post, that Good Enough to Eat did not in fact close. It simply moved locations to Columbus and 85th.)
When I left New York in December of 2011, the 9/11 Memorial and One World Trade Center were not yet finished. This was the one thing that I knew I wanted to make time for. Sometimes it is hard to believe that the terrorist attacks on New York City was 13 years ago. As I walked through the security lines into the memorial, I tried to think back to September 11, 2001. I remember growing up and my parents saying that they could remember exactly where they were when John F Kennedy was killed. 9/11 is my JFK. I was in 8th grade. I was in Mrs. Hutchins' studio one when I heard about the first plane hitting the North Tower. I am not sure how long it took for me to fully grasp what had happened. Walking through the memorial, seeing the footprints of the two buildings and the water features, was an incredibly moving experience. A sobering experience, I would highly recommend taking the time to visit the memorial.
One of my favorite things about New York City is the amount of food options that you have at your fingertips. Italian. Ethiopian. Thai. Mexican. American. No matter what your taste buds are craving, there is always something to satisfy everyone. Obviously I went to Shake Shack, a clear New York favorite, which if I heard correctly, is coming to Chicago in the near future. Prepare yourselves Chicagoans, you may gain a few extra pounds!
5 Napkin Burger. I love your burgers. This was one of the first restaurants that I went to during my first visit to The City. It'd be foolish for me to say that it doesn't hold a special place in my heart. Or in my stomach.
Original 5 Napkin Burger
10 oz. fresh ground beef, gruyère cheese, caramelized onions, rosemary aioli, soft white roll
Dos Caminos? Oh, Dos Caminos...how I want to fill my stomach with you goodnight every night of the week. Located in New York's Meatpacking District, this restaurant has become hands-down my favorite place for some Mexican food and a margarita or two. The outdoor seating, triangle building, and cobbled stone streets perfect the atmosphere. A Olivia Wilde sighting doesn't hurt either.
bacon, chicharron, pickled jalapeños
grilled chipotle-marinated sirloin steak, caramelized onions, cotija cheese, guacamole, handmade corn tortillas
Shoot, all of this talk of food is making me significantly hungry. I guess the Snyder's of Hanover Butter Snaps that I've been chowing down on all day aren't quite doing the trick. Looks like we'll have to bring you some more recipes in the next few days.