This weekend was one of the best I have had in a long time. On Saturday, I headed down to Greenwich to hang out with J, a friend that I have known for over 10 years. She was giving a presentation at the Leadership alliance conference, which serves as the avenue where summer interns from over 31 institutions come together and present their summer research. In fact, the leadership alliance is how J and I met. We both spent a summer together at Brown University in 2001 and have maintained a friendship through the rest of college, our respective Ph.D. programs, postdoctoral fellowships, and now real jobs. I am so honored to be a bridesmaid in her upcoming wedding:)
Anywho, I digress. J as well as two more fellow Brown alums M and Jo, and I headed to the city late Saturday morning. We thought it was hot that the hotel’s free shuttle to the Metro North was a black suburban with a leather interior. Nice way to start off the trip.
Once we arrived in the city, we headed towards “The Standard” , the restaurant in the meatpacking district where we supposed to meet my bud J’s friend L at. However, since we were about an hour early, we headed over to Chelsea market to check out the wares.
I loved Chelsea market! Immediately as you enter, you are almost caught off guard by all of the different options and different food markets. The iron wrought bull on the left side near the entrance is sort of imposing until you see a parent lifting their child up to take a picture on it. Representatives are standing near their stores and offering you free samples of food: we tried the chocolate and the hot sauces from South Africa. I was truly impressed with the “farm to table” restaurant. If we weren’t going to brunch, I would have tried to convince my friends to join me in there for some “Omnivore’s Dilemma” worthy food.
However, one thing I couldn’t pass up before we left the market was the cupcake store, Eleni’s. Oh My!
So many different cupcakes to choose from. I was so overwhelmed, but then as I glanced closely, I saw my old friend, red velvet cupcake. We were so happy to see each other! Because red velvet was a mini, I felt even more compelled to bring him closer.
The best red velvet cupcake I have had to date. Hands down. You know how sometimes the cake can be very dry with red velvet cupcakes? This wasn’t. It was supermoist and the frosting wasn’t too sweet–just sweet enough. Oh my! I enjoyed my cupcake so much that one woman remarked to both M(M bought a vanilla cupcake with raspberries inside) and I that we were good advertisement for the store…I might have moaned a little as I was eating…lol.
After we finished the market, we strolled around in Anthropologie for a bit. I love that store! It is a visual treat. So many creative ideas bounced around in my head as I was walking through. Framed fabrics, funky lightening, textual appealing clothes and shoes. I love it!
We were pleasantly surprised by F, who was also in the Brown program with J and I, as we were heading out. F works in the city and M arranged for him to join us in the city to catch up. We finally headed to the Standard after L joined us. The Standard is a very wonderful place to do brunch. Our waitress was quite funny. She ended up asking all of us what we did for a living and came to the conclusion that we all met at “geek camp”. Ha! I guess a table full of scientists, engineers, and one lawyer could be considered geeks, I don’t know…lol We proceeded to have a wonderful brunch full of conversation about male and female dynamics as well as NYC living. For brunch, I ordered the skirt steak salad and a Bellini. Deelish!
After the meal, L took us up to the high line elevated park (better known as the promenade) and we walked the full length. After a while, we started to get really hot and became very interested in these ice pops we saw people walking around with. We finally asked a passerby where they got it from and we found out that up the walk a little further, there was a cart by La Newyorkina that was selling creative pops. One of the flavors on the menu was burnt milk. Didn’t sound very appealing to me, so I settled on the papaya. So good!We ended up sitting on the side of the promenade and walked people go by. I’d never thought I would say this, but I really love the feel of NYC. The vibe, the people and their individual style, along with the various things to see and explore in the city had me thinking about my life. I actually could see myself doing a “stint” in NYC. I might have to keep that in the back of my mind as I think about my career goals, etc. But definitely living a few years in NYC is really starting to look very appealing to me.
After people watching for a bit, we continued our stroll. Along with way, J and I kept eyeing these ice cream sandwiches that people had. Boy they looked good. It wasn’t until we saw the woman with the red ice cream sandwich, that we had to ask where could we find that. She told us that her ice cream sandwich was red velvet whoopie pie with cream cheese frosting ice cream. Different, but it peaked my interest! J and I headed in the direction of the cart and immediately agreed to split one. After all, we are trying to watch our figures…lol
I ended up having to take a picture of the fake one because it was too hot and we needed to eat our sandwich fast. You would have laughed at me like the dude at the cart did. I started doing a dance..lol I even made up a song, but I couldn’t tell you what it was now…lol
After that bit of deliciousness, we headed back towards the 6 line and stopped on our route at “Eataly”. I had a foodgasm. Wow! Mario Bartelli is definitely making money off of that venture. If you never been, I highly recommend. It is an Italian market/restaurant on fifth avenue. Immediately as you enter, you see all of this fresh produce-the tomatoes look so good, you almost want to reach out and touch and smell them. As you walk further, you will see people standing at a meat and cheese bar enjoying wine, and all kinds of cured Italian meats and cheese. Around the corner, you will see a wine station, a butcher, and all kinds of dried goods. I definitely have to go back and eat there. It would be a good spot to eat after hitting up the Met or another museum close by.
Overall, it was a wonderful day in NYC. Great food. Great friends. Great life!