We spent last weekend in NYC celebrating my birthday with some great friends. The impression I've always had of the big city was masses of people surrounded by cold concrete in the midst of constant construction and traffic. I'm pretty sure this impression was reinforced by the fact that I only knew it from class trips, broadway shows as a child, and visiting friends in mid-town - who seemed to always live in doorman buildings. It all just never made sense to me.
Seems I was way off target, that the "big" city is really just like anyplace - made up of small amazing neighborhoods. I've been spending most of my recent time up there in the Flatiron Dsitrict, close to Union Sqaure and Gramercy Park. It's stunningly beautiful.
Farmer's market in Union Sqaure:
I can honestly say that I don't think the food in general is any better up there, but the variety of locations and options are staggering. There's just this design sense everywhere that doesn't seem as staged or forced as it does in Philly.
Some places we ate & drank were: The Lion (amazing burger), Pete's Tavern (perfect old-school New York corner bar), The Mondrian in SoHo (jaw-dropping exterior garden and interior dining room), Pastis (Parisian brunch at the start of the Highline) and The Standard New York (see images below).
And then there's the aforementioned Highline. If you haven't been, it really is something to travel for. It stretches from roughly 14th to 30th along 10th Ave. and it's truly spectactular. An amazing way to travel through the city:
I can't wait to get back up there and explore some more.