Southerners in the Big City

Sunday, July 24, 2016

I mentioned before that we had one full day in New York City and we tried to pack in a lot of fun sights and experiences. We stayed at Le Parker Meridien just south of central park so we were right in the thick of the fun (but tucked a block or two away from the craziness of Times Square).

Our day's agenda looked something like this: 1) Breakfast, 2) Top of Rockefeller Center, 3) Walking food tour in Greenwich Village, 4) Museum of Natural History, 5) Dinner.

We got up and walked the few blocks down to Rockefeller Center and stopped at a Pret A Manger for a quick breakfast along the way. We got to Rockefeller right nearly right when it opened and took the elevator all the way up to the top. I imagine the place got much more crowded as the day went along but it was not crowded at all at 9 am. The views were so pretty. We love Rockefeller even more than the Empire State Building because well you can see the Empire State Building.

We hung out on "Top of the Rock" for 30-45 minutes probably catching views from all the angles. Then we ventured out to find our way down to Greenwich Village to meet up with the food tour. This necessitated Perry's first NYC Subway trip which was an icky and obligatory rite of passage. 

We made it to the Village and Murray's Cheese Shop just in time to start the food tour. I have said this over and over here on the blog but we love food tours. We try to find them in every city we travel to. It is just such a fun way to spend a few hours walking and eating and immersing yourself into the atmosphere and culture of a neighborhood. Last time we were in New York we did a Lower East Side food tour. This time we went with Greenwich Village. It was 3 hours of so much fun. We learned about the history and architecture of the area and sampled yummy food from 8 places:
  1. Pizza from Joe's Pizza
  2. Olive Oil and spreads from O and Co Olive Oil Shop
  3. Rice Ball from Faiccos (plus a salami bonus that our guide finagled us)
  4. Cauliflower, currants, caramelized onions & pine nuts from Palma Ristorante (seated tasting)
  5. Eggplant Rollatini from Rafele Ristorante (seated tasting)
  6. Warm Chocolate Chip Cookie from Mike and Cookies
  7. Assorted Cheese from Murray's Cheese Shop
  8. Cannoli from Rocco's Pasticceria

So definitely an Italian theme going on. It was all so good. Perry had a great time too, despite the ads saying its not good for kids. Maybe some kids would get bored and unruly but our kid was great and perfectly well behaved. We strolled him in the stroller between places and he would hop out and walk (and we would fold up the umbrella stroller) in establishments. Unsurprisingly the cookie was his favorite part. And he may have eaten his weight in orange slices at Rafele. While we were all eating our eggplant pasta (which he decided he was not a fan of) the bartender kept his plate stocked with orange slices from the bar. 

Once we finished the food tour we all decided we needed to walk off some of the food we had just consumed and so we started walking towards the Museum of Natural was several miles away so we knew we wouldn't make it all the way there on foot but we lasted about 2 miles and to Times Square when we decided to hail a cab the rest of the way. 

We got to the Museum late afternoon (hello crowds) and spent an hour or so hitting the highlights of ocean life and dinosaurs. 

By this time it is nearing five o'clock and we are all pretty tired from a very full day. So we walked back to our hotel through Central Park. I think we all thought our feet were going to fall off as we trudged the last few blocks (except Perry who was dead asleep in his stroller). Ann, Andrew and Perry all headed straight up to the room while I stopped by the Burger Joint in our hotel lobby. It is this little, quite literal hole in the wall restaurant in the fancy hotel. Indicated only by a small neon lit burger shaped sign behind the registration desk. I grabbed a bunch of burgers and fries to-go and we ate in the comfort of our hotel room. 

We got Perry cleaned up and in bed and Andrew and I ventured out to go do a little shopping on 5th Avenue and grab dessert at Dylan's Candy Bar. S'mores pizza and fun candy themed drinks for the win. It put the cherry on top of a really fun New York City day.

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