Image: Refinery Rooftop
I’ve referenced New York a number of times on Instagram, so I guess it’s no surprise how much I love it. I spent 3 months working from the office there and although it doesn’t sound particularly long, some day’s it felt like forever, especially as I had recently fallen in love with Mr H and then (as he often tells me) had to leave him. He did however manage to find the time to visit me three times, along with my mum, dad, sisters, brothers, best friends, work colleagues, I should have charged rent; I could have made a fortune.
It sounds ridiculous now but one of the most challenging times was eating out alone for the first time! I remember scouting out restaurants a few days before leading up to the big event, selecting somewhere that wasn’t too intimidating or romantic or loud. And then texting my friends on the way to the restaurant, absolutely terrified, while they pep talked me over what’s app! I felt like I was on my way to a first date….with myself!! Obviously I survived it and did it many more times!
Now I’m a mum I can’t imagine ever being lonely again and sometimes think about how much I took that time alone for granted. What I would give now to go sit in a restaurant on my own for a few hours!!
I was lucky enough to eat out ALOT while I was there and grew to really love some of the places I visited regularly, so here are my Top 5 New York restaurants and bars…
Images: ABC Kitchen, Dear Irving, L&W Oyster
REFINERY ROOFTOP– Refinery Hotel, West 38th Street, Midtown
I absolutely love a rooftop bar (obsessed) and made it my duty to try out the majority in New York. I was shocked at how many there actually are! But this was my favourite (probably because it was within walking distance from my apartment!) it was small and intimate and had an amazing view of The Empire State.
CIENFUEGOS- East Village- 95 Avenue A- between 1st and Ave A
A Cuban rum bar in the East Village located above Amor y Amargo and accessed behind a curtain and up some stairs. There you’ll find an intimate and beautifully fairy lit bar, serving small Cuban plates and amazing rum punches; served in tin punch bowls and designed to share. I highly recommend the Honey Badger or if you’re brave enough The House Zombie (it looked pretty terrifying)
ABC KITCHEN / ABC COCINA– 35 E 18th Street, Nr Union Square
Both located in the amazing ABC Home, these are two very different restaurants yet still so difficult to pick between! I loved both for dinner but also great for brunch; serving up a serious bloody mary.
ABC Cocina offers Latin American tapas style food. Dimly lit by an eclectic mix of chandeliers and its concrete and brick walls; this place is ridiculously cool. It’s a fun and lively restaurant and I’d recommend going with friends to drink and chat and pick.
ABC Kitchen follows the farm to table theme so food is fresh and delicious. It’s slightly more glamorous with its white walls and stunning lighting, feeling romantic and special.
DEAR IRVING– 55 Irving Place
Another speakeasy, this opened while I was out there and oh my, what a find!!! It’s a gorgeous little prohibition style bar, very 1920’s, chic and glamorous, It was my secret gem!! Made up of 4 different rooms; from a glitzy Gatsby crystal drape heaven, to a Marie Antoinette themed room filled with French inspired paintings and sofas. I’ve had an evening in every room and all have been so fantastic. And most importantly there is a buzzer to call the waiter for drinks, genius.
L&W OYSTER BAR – 254 5th Avenue (between 28th and 29th)
This was my favourite place to eat alone, for when I wanted to sit and watch the world go by, scoffing oysters and sipping rosé. They change the menu regularly and serve whatever is fresh, I was lucky enough to experience the best thing I have ever tasted; lobster gnocchi with pork belly- IT WAS INSANE!!!
Images: ABC Cocina, Cienfuegos, House Zombie Punch
Extra Virgin in The West Village for brunch, the baked eggs are dreamy.
Burger Joint behind a secret curtain at Le Parker Meridien for the most delicious and sloppiest burgers in New York- FACT.
Bryant Park Grill, restaurant overlooking the park, I could sit there for hour’s people watching.
Beauty & Essex, on The Lower East Side, you enter through a pawn shop to access this beautiful restaurant (I seriously love a secret entrance). Beautiful setting for dinner AND they have a champagne bar in the toilet!!
I could go on and on and on and on!!!
Please comment with any recommendations you have of your own! x
Images: Beauty & Essex brunch, Beauty & Essex pawn shop exterior, Bryant Park views