If you are a human being with internet access, no doubt you’ve been made well aware: it’s officially fall, y’all! Get out your boots and your scarves, order that PSL, cavort in an apple orchard. It’s decorative gourd season, motherf*$&ers.
But before we binge on pumpkin-flavored everything, I figured I might as well talk a bit about summer 2016, which has not gotten much coverage here on ye olde blog. The usual excuses apply: extreme busy-ness at work, mixed with general malaise from a disgustingly hot summer in the city. And due to these two factors, summer 2016 will not go down in the books as my best summer – but I still did some stuff.
I started July with a trip to Lincoln Center to see Sleeping Beauty (Misty Copeland was performing!). I love, love, love Lincoln Center: the gigantic fountain, the sparkling chandeliers, the elegant theaters. And the ballet was pretty great, too.
On a random weekday night, one of my friends and I realized we were having super slow weeks at work and perhaps a little make-the-most-of-the-quiet celebration was in order. We headed to Ma Peche for a midweek splurge dinner and, man, was it the right choice. So many good dishes – but perhaps my favorite thing of all was choosing a variety of seafood appetizers off the rolling appetizer cart. Yes, please.
Among the places I had been meaning to visit for quiet some time was Two Hands, a cute little Australian café and restaurant. I’m so glad I finally made it in July: the decor is to die for (an Instagrammer’s dream) and, more importantly, the avocado toast was on point.
If you want to feel super swanky, I’ve discovered where you should head: Baccarat, a luxury hotel just across the street from MoMA. We had an end-of-summer celebration for work there and it was such a fun evening: great drinks, great food, great service. I’m now scheming about heading back for a très elegant afternoon tea.
Another spot that falls decidedly within the realm of Instagrammer paradise is the Butcher’s Daughter, with its bright white interior and plant-covered bar area. The food (or at least the particular dish I ordered) was a bit less impressive: I’d classify my breakfast sandwich as fine but not great.
From the Butcher’s Daughter, I headed to the High Line for a morning stroll (which, in a minor miracle for a blogger as negligent as myself, I already wrote about here). That space just never gets old.
Our end-of-summer party at work was held at the East Village location of The Standard this year, a location that couldn’t have been more perfect. Though I’d been to a restaurant there before (Narcissa), I had never made my way to the rooftop. Huge oversight, as it turns out! The rooftop views are incredible, as you can truly see everything: the Empire State Building, One World Tower, and the Brooklyn Bridge. Grainy iPhone photos just don’t do it justice.
We had another work outing at Peter Lugers, that most classic of New York steakhouses. The amount of food was absurd: gigantic steaks, enormous slices of bacon, and sides galore. Steakhouses are not really my jam, but it was fun to finally visit an NYC institution!
Though it’s always a little cheesy, I can never say no to the Rockettes, and this summer was no exception. I work just a few minutes away from Radio City, so I headed there with a friend after work one evening. However corny some of the dialogue and songs might be, it’s always awesome to see: 1) the gorgeous costumes and 2) the synchronized kicking!
I had always meant to try Emack & Bolio’s for ice cream, but I never quite got around to it. When I learned there was an Upper West Side location, it was official: I had no excuse to delay any longer. On a scorching hot Saturday, after seeing Ghostbusters with a friend, I grabbed a cone and strolled through my neighborhood. Gourmet ice cream & UWS brownstones: who can beat that?
When my sister was in town, I dragged her to a restaurant I’d long wanted to visit, ABC Kitchen. While our meal as a whole was great, what I’ll remember most is the dessert: a salted caramel popcorn ice cream sundae. Let the church say Amen.
My work friends and I have been attempting to make a more conscious effort to try out more of NYC’s culinary scene, and one of the most recent outings for our very own Finer Things Club was to Empellón Cocina. We visited during Restaurant Week and definitely got our fill of tacos & cocktails. My favorite dish, however, had to be my sweet corn appetizer – incredibly flavorful!
I saw a picture of brunch at Loosie’s Kitchen and, I confess, decided immediately that I wanted to go, as it just looked so bright and cheerful and wonderful. I trekked to Williamsburg the very next day with a friend and it was indeed all those things – plus, my chicken & waffles were on point.
Not wanting our brunch at Loosie’s Kitchen to end, we wandered down the street to Meadowsweet to continue day drinking. I really liked this space!
One of the things that continues, again and again, to make me happy about living where I do in NYC is having easy access to Central Park. During this scorching summer, I made it there less than I’d like, but I still found a few occasions to wander through. It never disappoints! Next on the old bucket list: taking out a rowboat on the lake.
And finally, this year’s summer ended the same way it did for me last year: with a trip to the US Open. I am a tennis nut, so I love having the US Open to look forward to every year. This time around, we saw Novak Djokovic and Madison Keys play, plus we were there for the grand unveiling of the new retractable roof over Arthur Ashe. It was pretty cool!
And with that, summer 2016 in the city is in the books. Bring on autumn!