August in New York: A Few Favorites

Upper East Side

August was a crazy busy month: I found myself traveling to four of the five boroughs (plus a new island!), saying hello to friends visiting town, saying goodbye to my sister moving away from New York, and learning that September would bring me a very exciting work opportunity. In between all of that, I saw awesome New York City things and ate really good food. To wit:

The month began with a spur-of-the-moment night out in Williamsburg. At Brooklyn Surf Bar, we ate good seafood, had fantastic frozen drinks, and enjoyed the kitschiness of a restaurant with a sand-covered floor. Then it was over to Brooklyn Bowl for hip hop karaoke night. No, we did not karaoke ourselves (the people at Brooklyn Bowl are not fooling around, and I probably would have been booed off the stage), but it was fun to watch people really go for it – there were some amazing performances.

Brooklyn Bowl

The next weekend, it was on to Queens, where I visited the Mad Men exhibit at the Museum of the Moving Image. This was a cool retrospective, and I especially enjoyed seeing the intricate, impeccable period costumes.

Museum of the Moving Image3

I’d only ever visited Queens before to go to a Mets game, so I felt I should explore a bit. While I went on a super hot day and quickly abandoned all grand plans, I did get to wander around Astoria for a while, which I found quite charming in parts. I did not, however, have a chance to eat Greek food, which seems like a big oversight on my part. One day, Astoria. One day.

Astoria1

Astoria2

After Queens, I decided to pop over to Roosevelt Island, which I have long been meaning to visit. Situated right between Manhattan and Queens, Roosevelt Island offers some pretty sweet views of the city. You can take a tram to and from Manhattan, which provides even more scenic vistas.

Roosevelt Island

Roosevelt Island Tram Views

After disembarking from the tram, I realized that I was dangerously close to Sprinkles Bakery. I’ve had Sprinkles cupcakes before, but had never tried their ice cream shop – and a super hot day of sightseeing seemed like the perfect excuse. I selected the salted caramel in a red velvet cone and it was to-die-for. The salted caramel is quite salty, but I loved it!

Sprinkles

In other ice cream news, I stopped by Milk Bar one day on my walk home from work for their famous cereal ice cream (with cornflake topping, of course).

Milk Bar Cereal Ice Cream

And then I burned off my ice cream calories by walking through Central Park home:

Central Park

My most decadent experience of the month was definitely eating dinner at Eleven Madison Park. This was the splurgiest of meals, but it was worth it to try EMP’s top-notch, gorgeously presented dishes.

Eleven Madison park

Sometimes – August included – it seems like I am living at the office. But every now and then, I get out of work early and catch a glimpse of something wonderful, like this post-rainfall sky. It was insane!

Purple Skies in Midtown

Pink Skies in Midtown

My subway stop is Times Square, which feels like a curse 99.9% of the time (the world is overpopulated!). But once in a while, you see something pretty neat there – like this gigantic World War II Kiss Sculpture:

The Kiss in Times Square

One of the more random but cooler occurrences this month was getting a call from my sister at noon on a Tuesday, asking if I could get out of work early and would I like to go see a taping of Seth Meyers??? Um, YES. Her friend had scored us tickets, and we got to skip to the front of the line and were given sweet seats – not a bad deal! Kristen Wiig and Titus Burgess (Pinot noir!) were the guests; we totally lucked out to see people we love (and they were both very funny in person, as was Seth Meyers).

NBC Studios Seth Meyers

To commemorate my sister’s departure from New York before she heads west, we grabbed brunch at Extra Virgin in the village. I had the huevos rancheros:

Extra Virgin Huevos Rancheros

Extra Virgin

After brunch, I made sure to wander through West Village, which is right up there with my very favorite NYC neighborhoods. I come here a lot and it always charms the pants off me. Not literally (but that wouldn’t be that crazy for New York).

West Village1

West Village2

West Village3

And when wandering through the Village, should you come upon Molly’s Cupcakes, it’s probably best that you stop in to grab one.

Molly's Cupcakes West Village

On the last weekend of the month, I trekked up to the Bronx to visit the Frida Kahlo exhibit at New York Botanical Gardens yet again. I love NYBG and can totally see this becoming one of my NYC staples for as long as I live here. It’s beautiful in every season!

Frida at NYBG

After NYBG, my friend and I headed over to the Bronx’s Little Italy, which was super fun. This felt way more authentic (and was way less crowded) than the Manhattan version. We grabbed lunch at Enzo and then post-lunch pastries at Morrone. Everything was delicious!!

Enzo - Bronx Little Italy

Bronx Little Italy

The highlight of my month just may have been the very last thing I did: attending the US Open! My friends and I went on opening night, so we got to see Josh Groban perform a Broadway medley, Vanessa Williams sing the National Anthem, and Serena Williams and Rafa Nadal play. It was awesome! I am a huge tennis fan, so this was something I had been looking forward to forever, and it did not disappoint.

US Open 2015

US Open

US Open2

How was your August?!

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