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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Weekly NYC Blog Post - 11.15.2012

For all the not-so-great places I went the other week I had a GREAT week this past week.  Found some new favorites bar-wise and ate some interesting food too!  Short list but hope you like.

Bowery Hotel
I think this may be my favorite hotel in Manhattan.  I don't know if it's the doorman in the red jacket that meets you are the door, the plush couches in the main lounge area or the gorgeous lighting in the upstairs bar area.  Either way I feel like it transports you to a different area where you can still smoke cigars on the veranda.  I was here last week for a concert series.  The concert was terrible but the ambiance was magical.  I can't wait to force my parents to stay here next time they visit to I can wander in again.

Photo Credit: Bowery Hotel Website


Berry Park
My friend's review of Berry Park began with "I was standing there with this chick looking out at the magical view of Manhattan from the rooftop and then Arcade Fire came on... and the rest was easy."  After laughing profusely at this commendation of Berry Park I felt I had to check it out.  When it turned out the wait for six people on a Friday was 1.5 hours at 5 Leaves up the street (shocker!) we ended up here to my delight.  The place rocks music from about 10 years ago so it's nothing if not nostalgic and the clientele are definitely attractive fratty hipsters (is there such a thing?!)

 Photo Credit: Berry Park Website

I ordered the arugula salad with pomegranate seeds, rosemary spiced nuts, gorgonzola and butternut squash vinaigrette as a starter which tasted SO fresh and light.

And I ended with the slow cooked pulled beef brisket with root beer/chipotle BBQ sauce and toasted fennel slaw on a brioche bun which was a little lacking in flavor and sauce but by no means bad.

I also made sure to walk upstairs to check out the rooftop.  For you girls reading wasn't nearly as magical as he'd made it sound.

Nights and Weekends
We hit up this place after Berry Park, before continuing on to my all time favorite, Manhattan Inn.  This place gives such a good first impression with it's industrial yet intimate interior, but then you try the drinks.  And they are TERRIBLE.  First the bartender made me a spicy mescal original that was so spicy I continued even take a second sip.  I then tried to return to beer only to find that the beers on tap were pretty bad too.  Sadness... I won't be coming back here.

Photo Credit: Nights and Weekends Website

Doc Hollidays
Doc's was an after-concert stop because I wasn't quite ready to turn in for the night.  It's dark, dank and dirty which is a recipe for falling in bar love in my book.  I sipped a few Bud Lights here and engaged in scintillating conversation because the music is audible but not annoyingly loud.  The people there were well worth the "watching" too.  I'll be back.  Oh yes.

Photo Credit: Janet G on

Lit Lounge
Not to immediately but Doc Hollidays to shame after saying such nice things but I found an even darker, danker, dirtier bar a few nights later.  Lit Lounge is everything you want at the end of the night - cheap beers, cheap girls, cheap dancing.  Ladies in lingerie troll the counter whispering sweet nothings in the ears of drunk East Villagers while in the bowels of the basement drunk revelers rub up against each other to EPIC live music/DJs.  Hot damn I love this place.  See you Saturday!

 Photo Credit: Ross I on

Toucan and the Lion
Pretty sure I've walked past this little spot a couple of times now without even realizing it was there.  So standard for Manhattan!  But luckily a foodie friend happened upon it and invited me to brunch.  The place is soo endearing with potted plants turned overhead lighting and large windows inviting in a cheerful sun. 

Photo Credit: Sara C on  

The best part though was the intriguing menu that puts an Asian spin on brunch classics.  I went with the Lion Stack with is corn pancakes with bacon, salsa verde and sunny up eggs.  It was delicious although if I'm being a harsh critic a little light on the bacon and a little heavy on the pancake.


Off the Wagon
Hello heaven, how have we not met.  I guess the reason I said this past week was so good is because I've unearthed all these ridiculous sports/dive bars.  My friend was in town and we happened across Off the Wagon which is pretty well known, I just never seem to make it there because I'm always at Bounce.  That being said, this place is AWESOME.  The bartenders were probably the drunkest people in the place and continuously heckled my USC T-shirt until I was mentally forced to retaliate but taking down a tallie PBR via beer bong.  That'll show em...right??  Anyways, the fact that they literally had a maximum number of people in plaid allowed in the bar was the frattiest thing I'd ever heard, yet still hilarious.  The best part?  On Saturdays starting at 10am(?) the pitchers are like $5 and increase a $1 an hour.  So come in and get started drinking early!

 Photo Credit: Off the Wagon Website


Brass Monkey
I'm pretty sure I've already done a post on Brass Monkey but in case I haven't this as been a long time staple from my days living in lower Chelsea.  It's a chill, friendly bar that I always love to hit up especially in summer.  However, for whatever reason, the rooftop bar has always been closed on my visits.  This past weekend I lucked out and managed to make my way up the final set of stairs to the most adorable outdoor patio I've ever seen.  Now this place has a view (sorry Berry Park!).  We sat for HOURS just chilling on the patio sipping rose (cuz we're classy).  I wish I could live on this roof.

Photo Credit: