MY TOP FIVE FAVORITE PLACES TO EAT
From on-the-go, to classic, to cozy, five NYC restaurant staples to consider…
isodi // Hands down my favorite place to eat in NYC. An intimate Italian spot in the West Village where the food and cocktails never disappoint. Just beware, if you don’t have a reservation, expect a long wait, and the space is not ideal for large groups!
Dante // A registered New York City landmark that gives off a Parisian feeling, Dante is a Greenwich Village staple. The space was beautifully restored in 2017 and is a true love letter to the original – an unpretentious meeting house for the local community. The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and features a world class bar program. In the morning I like the baby spinach bowl and a latte and in the evening I usually go for one of the handmade pasta dishes and a negroni (on tap!).
Grand Central Oyster Bar // So central (get it?) and one of the best little secrets in NYC. This spot, located in the basement of Grand Central is over 100 years old and oozes nostalgia and charm. I like to sit in the back bar, which is a bit more intimate, and eat fresh oysters with a glass of champagne!
Joe’s Pizza // Okay, okay we are all going to argue about where to find the best pizza in NYC. While I also love John’s of Bleeker, Roberta’s, Julianna’s, and Spunto (for thin crust lovers)…Joe’s has my heart. Not exactly a place you would want to dine in, but grab a slice and head across Carmine Street to sit in the park and enjoy.
ABC everything // The family of ABC restaurants are favorites of mine. ABC Kitchen, the original Jean-Gorges restaurant is still one of my preferred spots to take out of town guests. The crab toast is incredible and the fried organic chicken is delicious. ABC Cocina is directly across the street and a bit more casual and perfect for larger groups. The guacamole and tacos are always a hit – same with the warm rice dishes. Lastly, ABC V is the newest of the three restaurants, and entirely vegetarian. I prefer this spot for breakfast and love the fresh shakes and chia bowls.
MY TOP FIVE FAVORITE COFFEE SPOTS
I love a good coffee break (and pastry treat). Here are a few of my faves…
The Elk // Located steps away from my old apartment in the West Village, The Elk was my neighborhood go-to. With amazing Chai Lattes and a nice little menu of fresh bites, it has everything you could want in a coffee shop.
Bluestone Lane // The Aussie cafe has taken NYC by storm and has multiple locations throughout the island – and in Brooklyn. With strong, straightforward coffee, and some of the best banana bread around, this is the perfect place to start your morning or to take a mid-day break.
Once Upon a Tart // This cute SoHo café is central to shopping and a peaceful pit-stop if you need to avoid the crowds. The baked items are delicious – the flourless chocolate cake and almond croissants are two of my faves.
Toby’s Estate // Toby’s is a small batch roaster located in Brooklyn and has a few locations throughout the city. I tend to frequent the Flatiron and West Village locations most. I love their espresso blends.
Butler Bakeshop // Butler has two locations – one in Williamsburg and one in Dumbo. They have the BEST pastries and breakfast is served all day. Their coffee is roasted by Intelligentsia – and bonus – they have the cutest pink and green cups.
MY TOP FIVE STORES
Highlighting five must-stop places to shop in NYC. These are a few of my favorite shops that are tough to find anywhere else…
Dover Street Market // Originally hailing from London, Dover Street Market is like shopping in a museum. Carrying brands like Molly Goddard, Simone Rocha, and Thom Browne, Dover Street can be very expensive, but is certainly worth a visit just to window shop.
Bergdorf Goodman // This one of a kind department store (located right next to Central Park) is another one on my list. Make sure to stop by Linda’s shop – an eclectic, colorful, and quirky shop-in-shop curated by Fashion Director and SVP Linda Fargo. P.S. make sure to check out the dressing rooms in her shop as they are wallpapered with all of her fashion show invites from years past!
Sézane // This Parisian brand with a cult following recently opened up a shop in Nolita and the store is as beautiful as the clothing. Not only can you snag a lot of the sold out merchandise you can’t buy online, but also purchase lots of beautiful trinkets from Paris!
Mansur Gavriel // I have so much respect for a brand that can translate their vision into a visual space that seamlessly matches their aesthetic, and Mansur Gavriel did just that in SoHo! The space is clean, colorful, and magical.
Glossier // Boy Brow and the Moon Mask are staples in my beauty cabinet, so when Glossier announced they were opening a flagship in NYC I knew it was not to be missed. Stop by and stock up on all your favorites plus find some instagrammable moments to boot!
MY TOP FIVE THINGS TO DO
So, these are purposefully not your typical tourist activities – there are plenty of resources around the web to find all of those. Instead, here are a few things that I love to do in the city that never sleeps!
Cross a Bridge // The walk across the Brooklyn Bridge is beautiful – but I recommend going early to avoid the crowds. If you are starting from the Manhattan side, grab an outdoor table at Cecconi’s in Dumbo afterwards to people watch and get an A+ view back over to the city!
Boats // Grab the ferry to Governor’s Island and hang at Island Oyster for the afternoon. The outdoor space is not to be missed and is such a unique way to see the city in a whole new way! If you aren’t up for a ferry ride you can also just head to Tribeca and eat oysters on a BOAT. You can check out Island Oyster’s sister restaurant, Grand Banks, here.
BBQ & Games // Want to check out a different part of NYC? Head to Gowanus in Brooklyn and grab a bite and drink at Pig Beach – an awesome outdoor BBQ space that is also dog friendly! Once you are full, walk a few hundred feet to Royal Palms where you can play indoor shuffleboard and grab a cocktail in a retro-style environment.
Get Colorful // Check out the Color Factory in SoHo. Colorful, interactive, and appropriate for all ages, it is a total crowd-pleaser and the perfect spot to get some fun content for the gram ;).
Museum Hop // While the MET is the most famous and visited NYC museum, I would put The Frick, MoMa Ps1 and Neue Galerie as others to strongly consider. The Frick Collection, housed in Henry Frick’s former residence on 5th Ave, is a stunning collection of old world European paintings and sculptures (complete with a beautiful interior courtyard in the property). MoMa Ps1 focuses on the most experimental contemporary art, and is always changing exhibits. Neue Galerie is a tiny but mighty museum, and since it is located right on Museum Mile, is easy to pop into if you already have a planned visit to the MET!