I wanna be a part of it …. New York, New York!

Every time someone mentions a trip to New York, a vivid memory of my 1st year English professor comes to me. Yeah, I know, there is probably something wrong with that. I can’t help it. He had thinning, reddish hair, was about 5’6”, possessed a mild manner and had a passion for life. You could feel it in his speech, and when he spoke of life experiences, his eyes would light up. I do not recall the novel we were discussing, but somehow, the question: “How many of you have been to New York?” popped out of his mouth. Two hands shot into the air. He appeared shocked, and posed the question again. He began to share some of his adventures and having to return to the subject at hand, he concluded “You haven’t lived until you’ve been to New York!”

The 1st of two new towers

The 1st of two new towers

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Twin Tower Memorial Site, one of two, very beautifully done

And since then, I have always dreamed of visiting New York. I HAVE visited a few times, and each time, am reluctant to leave. There’s a vibe in NY that is indescribable. Perhaps it is the stories of the gangs; the peoples who have travelled through Ellis Island with a desire to plant their roots in New York; the fashion scene; cuisine; arts; culture … you name it.

Evening glimpse of Rockefeller Center

Evening glimpse of Rockefeller Center

View from The Rock

View from The Rock

Grand Central Station

Grand Central Station

Who wouldn’t be drawn to something in NY! I would never want to live there, but it is a place I’d love to visit every year. There is always an adventure to be had – a tour at Radio City Music Hall? Guggenheim Museum (in SOHO), The Met, Museum of Natural History, MoMA … what about catching a Broadway play? OR, better yet, plan ahead and book an evening at a fancy restaurant, then head over to a jazz bar.

Metropolitan Museum

Metropolitan Museum

My most recent trip was over spring break, late March. This trip was different from the others. I was with my mother-in-law and children, who have never been. We went to some familiar sights, and visited some new. We took in a show … and of course, mapped out the restaurants.

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Our first gourmet stop was at a Brazilian Steakhouse named Churrascaria Plataforma (316 W 49th St). Skewers of different types and cuts of beef, pork, lamb and chicken were brought out to serve. If your coaster had the GREEN side up, then the meat would continue to come. If the waiter sees RED, he knows not to ask. A nicely sized portion would be cut for one to receive with tongs (provided). For beef, there was shank, ribeye (my favourite), short rib, that’s all I can remember. I believe there are 16 choices of meat/cuts. I was pleasantly surprised at the fact that none of the meat was dry. They were cooked perfectly! There was a full salad/cold bar, great accompaniments to the meats. One could also order some cooked vegetables.

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Unless a city is on the coast, I typically stay away from sushi. However, I have had a few recommendations to visit Sushi Samba (in the West Village) — a fusion of Brazilian/Peruvian flavours with Sushi. Here, you could get your fill on Sake – they had quite a variety – some served cold and some served hot. It was hard for me to make a decision with that many choices. All I wanted was a Caipirinha, Brazil’s national cocktail. Once my lips touched this, I made it a mission to try it wherever I could get it. Yum yum! The sushi was pretty fantabulous. I enjoyed the different sauces that came with the dishes. IT IS definitely an experience, but an expensive one at that. There were five adults and two children – the bill totalled approximately $850, including gratuity. Drinks came in under $80. OK, to put this in perspective, the purse I was carrying today is valued at $850, one I’ve “experienced” for a few years. So, you’re asking if I would recommend Sushi Samba? But of course. There is no shortage of restaurants in New York, but if you are craving sushi, give ‘em a try. No disappointment here.

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Twice, we dined at the Shake Shack. We weren’t properly packed for dining at fancy restaurants, but hey, we had to go casual a few times to meet our schedules. The Shake Shack originated from a hot dog cart (google to read on its history). I had a burger both times but took a bite of the hotdog. Incredible flavours. Organic meats. The shakes were great, too.

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We got here at 11:15 – the line-up went around the corner!

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When we were at the airport on our return flight, we quickly gravitated to the Snack Shack for one last bite.

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A simple, impressive menu

One of my favourite culinary inspirations/foodie super stars is Anthony Bourdain, so naturally we made sure to dine at Brasserie Les Halles on Park Avenue. It is said that Mr. Bourdain’s career started here, where he was an Executive Chef. I had a steak dinner and thought it to be reasonably priced. If I remember correctly, most of us had steak while two had wine, and the bill came in under $250.

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There are a couple other places I highly recommend – Bobby Flay’s “Mesa Grill” – trendy, upbeat, and fun; and “One if By Land, Two if By Sea” in the West Village. Looking to propose? This ambience is absolutely perfect for this and other occasions such as an anniversary celebration. Very romantic … I was there for part of my honeymoon. The other part was spent in Bermuda, but we will leave this for another entry.

Which of New York’s finest restaurants have you dined at?

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This entry was posted by Lillian on Thursday, July 31st, 2014 at 9:26 pm and is filed under Paleo Life, Restaurant Adventures, Sushi. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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