New York, New York

Last week I had the opportunity to travel to New York to visit good friends and finally be acquainted with the iconic, magnificent, odd city that is New York. I have a lot of friends who've visited or moved there and so I already had an idea of what it would be like, but nothing amounts to actually being there yourself. 

To no surprise, I absolutely loved it. It was very reminiscent of my hometown, Naples, Italy. The sights, the smells, the pace-- it reminded me of an old city, rich with history but still brimming with new experiences for both locals and foreigners to the area. Around every corner there was something new to discover and yet it's not new at all. New York has a lot of history; it's old. And that's a huge understatement.

First, I'd like to introduce my travel buddy (one of the best!) on the left, Sandy Luu, and our host on the right, Alison Lo. First order of business is eating so Alison took us to House of Small Wonders close to where she lives in Williamsburg. Here you'll find the BEST matcha green tea latte and some Japanese comfort food. 

First, I'd like to introduce my travel buddy (one of the best!) on the left, Sandy Luu, and our host on the right, Alison Lo. First order of business is eating so Alison took us to House of Small Wonders close to where she lives in Williamsburg. Here you'll find the BEST matcha green tea latte and some Japanese comfort food. 

One of my favorite places from the trip was Eataly. I went twice. Look at this CHEESE!!!

One of my favorite places from the trip was Eataly. I went twice. Look at this CHEESE!!!

Another favorite: Grand Central Station. I wish I could have taken a better photo, but this will have to do. I loved the architecture. This place was a prime example of history meeting the present. There was a damn Apple store just behind me in this picture. Don't know how to feel about that. But GCS was beautiful!

Another favorite: Grand Central Station. I wish I could have taken a better photo, but this will have to do. I loved the architecture. This place was a prime example of history meeting the present. There was a damn Apple store just behind me in this picture. Don't know how to feel about that. But GCS was beautiful!

New York Public Library! There aren't any books here from what I saw, but it's a great place to do work or study.

New York Public Library! There aren't any books here from what I saw, but it's a great place to do work or study.

Just a glimpse of the architecture at the New York Public Library.

Just a glimpse of the architecture at the New York Public Library.

A view of Brooklyn and Manhattan from Alison's rooftop. Just breathtaking. 

A view of Brooklyn and Manhattan from Alison's rooftop. Just breathtaking. 

Street art in Williamsburg.

Street art in Williamsburg.

Rainbow Bagel in Brooklyn. The filling is cream cheese with funfetti sprinkles. It was a little sweet and surprisingly pleasant!

Rainbow Bagel in Brooklyn. The filling is cream cheese with funfetti sprinkles. It was a little sweet and surprisingly pleasant!

On our way to the 9/11 Memorial.

On our way to the 9/11 Memorial.

Always remember.

Always remember.

First Lobster Roll. Was not disappointed.

First Lobster Roll. Was not disappointed.

Yes, we did Halloween in NY. So corny, I know.

Yes, we did Halloween in NY. So corny, I know.

Frozen Marshmallow (torched marshmallow with chocolate crispies and ice cream inside) and cronut from Dominique Ansel.

Frozen Marshmallow (torched marshmallow with chocolate crispies and ice cream inside) and cronut from Dominique Ansel.

The CRONUT (Crossaint, donute hybrid).

The CRONUT (Crossaint, donute hybrid).

Central Park and my happy af face.

Central Park and my happy af face.

I can't remember what this place was called but it was in Central Park and two performers just finished a violin/singing performance. Also Gossip Girl was filmed here. SPOILER (if it even is one) this is where Chuck and Blair get married.

I can't remember what this place was called but it was in Central Park and two performers just finished a violin/singing performance. Also Gossip Girl was filmed here. SPOILER (if it even is one) this is where Chuck and Blair get married.

A storm rolled in and people were still in their little row boats at Central Park. I want to do this next time-- although not in a storm! 

A storm rolled in and people were still in their little row boats at Central Park. I want to do this next time-- although not in a storm! 

I went to Eataly again and had a margherita pizza. I need to go back to Naples.

I went to Eataly again and had a margherita pizza. I need to go back to Naples.

Brooklyn Bridge anytime is gorgeous but this is magnificent.

Brooklyn Bridge anytime is gorgeous but this is magnificent.

Thanks for scrolling through! (And to Michelle Sumabat for taking this photo)

Thanks for scrolling through! (And to Michelle Sumabat for taking this photo)

Thank you to everyone who made this trip fantastic! Thank you Alison and Kai for letting me and Sandy stay with you. Jerome, KP, Michelle and Zerina for hanging out with us. Thank you Sandy for accompanying me! I feel like I forgot someone and if I did, charge it to my head not my heart.

Here's a list and links of places we tried (most are listed):

Places to eat:

  • Dominque Ansel: Known for cronut, crossaint/donut hybrid 
  • Momofuku: We went to the noodle bar
  • Food Gallery 32: Koreatown; lots to choose from 
  • Wo Hop City: Chinatown (not Wo Hop, the one upstairs)
  • The Bean: Great wifi and smoothies in addition to coffee and tea.
  • The Meatball Shop: The “Kitchen Sink” is delicious. Doesn’t sound like it, but it is.
  • House of Small Wonders: best Matcha Latte w/ Almond Milk. The taco rice was interesting.
  • Two Boots Pizza: Not the best pizza, but good enough for 2 a.m.
  • Eataly: Try almost everything. Lots of small countertop shops for cheese, meats, bread, pastries, cafes. There are Italian goods to buy in addition to small restaurants. 
  • Otto Enoteca: Really good, average-priced Italian dishes. 
  • Halal Guys: classic.
  • The Bagel Store: Rainbow Bagels
  • Chelsea Market: Lots of shops and restaurants. You can find local vendors here so it’s a good spot to get gifts.
    • The Lobster Place: Really good lobster roll. Not too much mayo. Small and expensive but worth it.
    • Los Tacos: BEST TACOS EVER.
  • Doughnut Plant: Try the Crème brûlée donut
  • Plaza Hotel Food Hall: Fancy food court next to Central Park!

Places to see:

  • Grand Central Station
  • Central Park
  • Highline Park
  • New York Public Library
  • Soho for shopping
  • Brooklyn Bridge