This is the last of our road trip USA series. Hmm..yes it is long over due. We are probably in Singapore by the time this post goes live. But we’ve got to do what we’ve got to do. We decided to end this series with Manhattan. Where you see naked cowboys, watch Rocky and have lobster roll for breakfast. #truestory.
We went to NYC not having much expectations. At the end of 4 days in New York, we were totally blown away. We left New York, thinking about when we should come back again next year. If you have not seen our entry on Brooklyn and Chelsea you should head on over. This is the “main” borough that everyone knows and a must visit if you plan to go to NYC. Manhattan. All that shiny lights. There is a billion things to do just in this borough alone! FOOD, theatre, shopping, picnicking or simply people watching. I have almost forgotten how awesome it is to live in a big city. Maybe its living in Germany where there is so much space and where everyone is scattered all over. Manhattan is so dense. Germany is like apfel schorle (apple juice mixed with sparkling water) and Manhattan is the apple juice concentrate. If that makes any sense at all. We were happy to just wonder along the streets and people watch.
Naturally food is always on our mind. One of the first breakfast was lobster roll. We are fancy like that. Just kidding. We were heading to Time Square and desperately searching for breakfast and this shiny food stand happens to be there. Before heading to the United States, we had a list of must eat. We do take our food very seriously. Lobster roll was on it. So why not have lobster roll for breakfast? It is really pretty good for a random discovery. Well it was our first. Apart from the fact that I did not know there is celery in it, who eats celery?, the taste was pretty good. Fresh, sweet and the taste of the celery was not overpowering. Thumbs up for that!
Because lobster roll is really not the most affordable breakfast in town, we decided to try Empanadas. Its curry puff from South East Asia. We order a few because there was a deal when you order three. All of them were good. Freshly made and warm. I would say its a great snack. Nothing much to rave about but nothing bad to say either. If you happen to be in Time Square and would like a snack, give this a try!
Besides time square. Another must see is Central Park. I love how the skyscrapers make way for a green oasis. Some spots feels so peaceful that you almost forget that you are in one of the most populous city in the United States. Oh and we have not seen so many squirrels in a city. Serious.
If you are planning to visit New York now, you should pop by the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Roof Garden Cafe and Martini Bar offers a gorgeous view of the city. It is open from May through October. It is open everyday but do make sure to check the time. Whats also awesome about it? Apart from the small donation to the museum, the bar is free to enter.
This picture reminds me of a typical hollywood movie scene.
Grand Central Station.
What we had to try was Asian food! DIM SUM. After yelping and looking through food review sites, we decided to head to East Harbor Seafood Palace, which is actually located in Brooklyn (714 65th St, Brooklyn, NY 11220). Now that I am typing this. But it is easily accessible by train. We went that real early for breakfast and stepping into the restaurant felt like we were back in Asia. The Husband was the only “white” guy in the restaurant. The restaurant looked like a place we celebrated my grandfather’s birthday when I was 12 year old. The old school decor that is not cheesy but rather authentic. The push cart with all the dim sums.
There are no menus. The waitress will simply push the food cart to your table and you can select the dishes you want. With my rusty mandarin skill, I manage to order for the both of us. The food was good and affordable. Don’t expect dim sum standards from Hong Kong. It is one of the best Dim sums i’ve had outside Asia. There was no particular dish that was outstanding, everything was good. Like how every dish should taste. The yam cake tastes exactly like yum cake. Perfectly seasoned with the right ingredients. The shrimp dumpling was huge and fresh. The custardy egg tarts were smooth with buttery tart shell.
I did not exactly know how much each dish cost. We simply ordered whatever we wanted till we were full. Every time you ordered a dish, they will stamp on the piece of paper. Marking the different type of dish you ordered. To pay you simply bring the piece of paper to the casher. The cost was way lesser than we expected. I can’t quite remember how much we paid. but it was nothing shocking for the amount of food we ordered.
Another free thing to do in NYC. Take the ferry boat to Staaten Island if you want to see the Statue of Liberty. You can take the boat back immediately after seeing the statue and enjoy the Manhattan skyline at the same time. Why stand in line and pay when you can sit in a boat and enjoy the breeze. ;)
Twice a year, there is the Manhattanhenge. When the setting sun is aligned with the east–west streets of the main street grid of Manhattan. We happen to be there. Hence the people standing in the middle of the ROAD. Of course I could not resist doing that as well. While I dash to the middle of the road risking my life to have a view of this perfect moment. Luck was unfortunately not on our side. It was a cloudy day so I could not see anything. meh. It was really not that dangerous.
One of the our food highlight was definitely our visit to Katz’s. We had Pastrami and Rueben sandwich. They were both amazing. The meat was so soft and juicy. There is nothing we can compare the softness and the smokiness of the pastrami with. The Rueben sandwich had the right combination of cheese and sauerkraut. The pickled cabbage adds both crunch and sourness to the sandwich. The combination of smoky and tender meat with salty cheese and crunchy sauerkraut is perfect. The portions are huge though. I could have shared the one sandwich with another person.
Next to Katz’s we stumbled upon this laboratory like gelato shop called il laboratoario del delato. Of course we had to pop by even though our stomach were exploding. We did not regret squeezing that extra ice cream. They had the more interesting flavours. Like lemon basil, tarragon pink pepper, green apple, etc. The flavours were really unusual yet we were really intrigued. The Husband and I had to share the ice cream because we were too full. If we were there on an empty stomach, who knows how many flavours we will try. I cannot remember what we ordered exactly, but am certain that it was a herb type flavour like basil or rosemary. You could taste the herb but it is not overpowering or weird. If that makes any sense. :)