Ok so I couldn’t wait to write this blog but more importantly step foot on Manhattan island again. The last time I went to New York was in 2012 and I met a young bearded hunk a spunk who I now call my soul mate. Enough gooey stuff and more food talk right? Ok here we go.
We only had 4 days in NYC this time and it was over Christmas (seriously so stunning) but we made the most of our time and loved every minute. We ate, walked, eat, sight seed, ate, ate and well … ate ! But it was Christmas and when in New York right. It isn’t the ‘healthiest’ of guides to NYC but a healthy balance to me is wholesome foods with treats on the side. I am a serious coffee snob with an obsession with green smoothies and brunch.
Jacks wife Freda
Be prepared to wait outside in a line for this place but you won’t wait for long. There are 2 locations, one in west village the other Soho, both cosy little cafes bursting with atmosphere and people. They like to seat you as quick a possible and the food comes out within minutes but that also means they like to get you our minutes after your last mouthful so another brunch loving traveler can experience Freda’s best creations. The menu has a little of everything from rose water waffles, smashed avo, toasted sangas, eggs with haloumi and a green shukshukka. Even though we felt slightly rushed, I’m not one to eat slowly so it didn’t bother me in the slightest, this was our favourite brunch in New York. Hats off to Jacks wife.
The butchers daughter
Strolling up Bleaker street in the ever cool downtown west village we came across this little white gem filled with plants and a crazy dressed waiter (think Lenny Kravitz meets ABBA) we hadn’t long eaten so it was just a snack but we had the cacao suave and mango madness smoothie (with an avocado straw!!!) and their famous cashew cheese sauerkraut Rueben. The whole menu is gluten and dairy free and offers some amazing sounding brunches. Slightly $$ but it’s New York and you pay the price for something healthy and schmancy.
Little Collins NYC
A little slice of Melbourne in New York with the best coffee on the island. Hands down! The cafe is skinny and long so you can walk in and make your way down the line to the coffee bar at the end where you can sip of your coffee and get on with your day. They also have a small but perfect menu of smashed avo, granola, banana bread, eggs and PB jelly.
Bluestone Lane – upper east side
Milo and vegemite toast are just a few of the Aussie touches of this place. Everyone in the cafe seemed to sport an Aussie accent ‘gDay Mate’ !! The interior is just spectacular, located in a part of a cathedral church just up from the Guggenheim on Central Park, Upper East Side. Their toast creations and smashed avo are top notch. I got the ricotta and berry compote combo.
Conveniently located JUST next door to our hotel on west 55th street it didn’t take us long to realise an amazing green smoothie was on our door step! At $10 a smoothie they weren’t cheap but loaded with the good stuff. Mine was (and highly recommend for those who love something creamy and less fruity) the Clean Green Protein made with banana, spinach, almond milk, hemp protein, almond butter, chia seeds and ice. Rob had the “nurse ginger green” which was apple, banana, coconut water, spinach, kale, hemp protein, fresh ginger and a date.
After a few hours strolling around Soho hitting the shops (cough Nike town and Sephora cough) we were peckish for something healthy and nourishing. Located inside Equinox you can sit and sip your smoothie whilst eyeing off the fitties who enter the building. I got the “green guardian ” which was almond milk, avocado, strawberries, spinach, chard, flax seeds, chia and almond butter. Packed with healthy fats and nourishing greens it was a fab combo. Not sweet enough for the boys but it was perfect for me.
Levain bakery – Upper west side
OH. MY. COOKIE! Finger licking good local cookie in this little basement bakery on the upper west side 74th street. Named the best chop chip cookie in New York I had the double chocolate peanut butter cookie and it was honestly like eating a jar of PB with a slab of chocolate. It wasn’t overly rich or sweet either but one was more than enough.
Rabbit hole, Williamsburg
We popped into the Rabbit hole for a cosy afternoon lunch and it didn’t disappoint. I had the beef hamburger with cheddar and salad on the side instead of chips. The burger was on the small side which was perfect for me but made the boys rolled their eyes at first sight but they were satisfied when finished. They make their own bread rolls and burger pattys. Worth a trip if you are walking around the area.
Fab restaurant with menus which you tick the boxes with textas. The menu consists of meatballs and ice cream sandwiches with little else but it is just perfect. Pick your meat ball meat, pick the sauce, pick your side or under meatball dish and out it comes. We each picked one and shared them as you get 4 balls per order. 4 was enough for one person and with the spaghetti, greens or daily vegetables it allowed a tiny gap for dessert without wanting more. Dessert was the fun part, pick your homemade cookie flavour and pick your homemade ice cream, yep homemade, and they will smash it together into an ice cream sandwich. I had choc chip cookie with espresso ice cream. Full to the brim!
I could go on forever about NYC and this glorious city but instead I just leave you with a handful of my favourite foodie experiences. The city that stole me heart and found me love almost 5 years ago – we’ll be back again soon!