North America, Travel, United States

New York, NY 2013: Day 1

It’s only been a little over a year since I was in New York with my lovely friends. This time I’m only in town for the weekend, before I head back to San Francisco for a business trip. Nonetheless I am here to make the most out of my 2.5 days in NYC by walking, eating, and having fun non-stop.

I got off work at 5pm last night, and headed to YVR around 9pm for my 10:55pm flight. It was my first experience with Westjet, but honestly it was not the best first encounter with this airline. The aircraft arrived at the gate late, and apparently the cabin was so dirty that they had to clean it for almost 45 minutes, which ended up delaying the boarding time by an hour. I only slept for four hours the night before and I was dead tired, and this delay did not help with my drowsiness at all. Despite the delay everyone got on the plane fine and arrived in Toronto about four hours later.

At Toronto Pearson Airport, all was good, and I pretty much slept through both of the flights (except I woke up a couple of times during my first flight from Vancouver to Toronto as it was much too cold in the cabin – I even had my coat on and it was still cold).

I arrived at LGA around 11am, went right out to grab a cab down to upper east side where my friend lives. I haven’t seen her for almost two years, so it was so nice to see her again. As soon as I dropped off my luggage and gave her my maple syrup and maple syrup chocolates from Canada, we headed out to have lunch.

Lunch was at this little Japanese soba place called Cocoron in Lower East Side-Chinatown (http://www.cocoron-soba.com). I am familiar with Japanese ramen as we have at least 6~7 different ramen places in Downtown Vancouver already (my favourite being Kintaro), but soba was something new for me to try. I tried Tororo Wakame soba, which seemed to be made with Shoyu broth and tororo (grated Japanese yam). It was definitely interesting, different than my usual pork-broth ramen. Nonetheless the portion was big, price was decent, and the soba noodles were cooked just right. Even though I was stuffed after finishing 2/3 of the noodles, we could not pass on the dessert of course. We ordered their special Green tea affogato, affogato with an interesting green tea twist. It’s basically a parfait with corn flakes cereal, green tea ice cream, little mochi balls, condensed milk, and topping it off with thick green tea shot that replaces the traditional espresso shot. It was also very yummy.

Tororo wakame photo 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After walking around the town, we went to la lanterna di Vittorio in Greenwich village for a coffee (http://lalanternacaffe.com). We both got a cup of Americano, and my friend recommended the pecan pie and the tiramisu. Since I couldn’t make up my mind, I turned to the expert and asked the server which one he would recommend. He recommended the tiramisu, and it did not disappoint me. It was a very rich tiramisu, I could taste the liquor that they used to soak the ladyfingers, marscapone was creamy and rich, and the cocoa powder was of a good quality as well. In terms of the coffee – to be honest, I am not the biggest fan of New York coffee scene. Nonetheless the coffee wasn’t too bad either, even though it was on the weaker side for me. Coffee tasted like mid-to-dark roast, with not much acidity just as I like my coffee to be. Also, the interior is just adorable; the huge lanterns in the garden side of the cafe made me feel like a fairy in a wonder garden. I’d say it is a very romantic date spot!

photo 5photo 4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Not too long after this, we went to Tiny Thai in Yorkville-Upper East side for dinner (http://www.tinythainewyork.com). Now that I think about it, all we did today was just walk, talk, eat, and loop three times. Anyhow, it was a rather hip-looking Thai restaurant with traditional menus. I ordered pad thai with duck, and it came with a whole duck confit dish serving-size of a duck with a lot of pad thai! Pad thai itself was just mediocre, nothing special, but the sheer portion of the duck just blew my mind.

photo 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I hope I wouldn’t have to roll myself to the airport on Monday…

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