Friday, July 29, 2016

Travel: New York Minute

I have always been fascinated by New York City and the hustle and bustle of Manhattan. People are always on the go with something new to do and exciting to see. Sitting back and watching sitcoms like How I Met Your Mother and dramas like Gossip Girl make the Big Apple such a destination to be. As much as I love my city of Chicago, I'll covet any trip to NYC. A few weekends a go, I found myself on the east coast visiting family. On one perfectly warm day, we drove into Manhattan and walked the streets of the concrete jungle.

I've been wanting to visit the Metropolitan Museum for a while now. With the yearly Met Gala on that first Monday every May, I've continuously seen how grand it is through the eyes of others. The Met Gala kicks off the opening of the annual fashion-themed exhibit and is attended by celebrities and socialites alike all dressed in theme and to the nines. This year the exhibit entitled Manus x Machina illustrated the use of hand and machine to create beautiful couture designs and showcased over 170 ensembles made as early as the 1920s. I loved seen all the pieces and marveled at the exquisite handiwork and the innovative machine-work. Admission fee to the Met is suggested and any amount of money can be paid for entry.

While in Manhattan I had brunch at Jack's Wife Freda, a trendy restaurant with mediterranean flair. There we tried out green shakshuka (I've only had traditional red shakshuka prior) and eggs benedict with salmon and a hollandaise sauce made with beets. Both dishes were yummy albeit small.

During the evening, we crossed the Brooklyn Bridge for pizza at Grimaldi's. I've heard of Grimaldi's for years and it's known as one of the best pizza spots in NYC thats been around for decades. The line to enter was long but moved quickly and service was fairly quick. It surprised me that the pizza menu did not include a list of pre-designed pies. Instead each pie came with a delicious tomato sauce, cheese and basil with guests' choice of toppings from an extensive list. We chose mushrooms to top the pie and the pizza we ordered had a soft and yummy dough with a more crisp crust.

While in NYC, we made customized ice cream bars at the Magnum Pop Up shop in Soho and stopped for capuccinos while sightseeing in the Flatiron District. This cappuccino was free thanks to Popular Pays at the adorable Toby's Estate. Toby's in Flatiron was a small fixture connected to a flower shop that was connected to Club Monaco. The ice cream bars from Magnum could be vanilla or chocolate (vanilla was our choice) and were dipped in Belgian chocolate. We chose 3 toppings from a selection of assorted options and white chocolate to drizzle on top. All in all, it was deliciously decadent. 

Perfect midday coffee pick me up

Magnum ice cream bars with rose petals, chocolate caramel and gold flakes on the left & almonds, chocolate caramel + hazelnut crouquant on the right

Flatiron; Brooklyn Bridge

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