Notes From The Road: NYC

I’m visiting five east coast cities over the course of three weeks, mostly busing and crashing on friends’ couches. You can check out past Notes From The Road (which are more international in nature) here.









I have literally spent more time in Milan, Italy and Taipei, Taiwan than I have in New York City.  Growing up in rural Minnesota, I based my expectations of NYC exclusively on what I saw in movies.  So, I was obviously convinced that cab drivers were going to yell “Idiot!” at me while I tried to cross the street and that a cokehead was going to shiv me in an alley.  Also: maybe I’d see a rumble between The Jets and The Sharks.So when I visited NYC after 1.5 years of living in Taiwan, I thought “What a clean, spacious, quiet city!”  But then a trash can full of monkeys would seem clean, spacious and quiet after living in Taiwan.

I spent this visit with my college roomie, her husband and their two snurffling dogs in a lovely apartment on the upper east side.  We drank wine on the rooftop and I scandalized the doormen by wearing deeply tacky Ed Hardy tattoo leggings with riding boots and dress shorts.


Other awesome bits?  Buying the ubiquitous street vendor pretzels, witnessing Real Live Guidos, discovering the wonder that is The Pretzel Croissant, experiencing Momofuku’s ramen first hand, walking across The Brooklyn Bridge, pawing through piles of cheap, sparkly things in Chinatown, exploring Williamsburg and its hipsters (Minneapolis hipsters are just as good, FYI) and navigating the subway (and transferring!) without getting lost.

By the time you read this, I’ll be in Philly!  Can you recommend any can’t-miss Philly hot spots?



Eating at Momofuku's ssam bar was one of my favorite NYC meals. Charred octopus with chocolate leaves. oh my…


Bummer, I run away from the computer for a couple of days and I miss you in my city! Come back to Brooklyn so a yes&yes fan can show you REAL brooklyn right. 🙂



I am from Philly!!! Definitely go to the Italian Market, stop in DiBruno Brothers cheese store, and ask for Matt Shankle to help you. He's my boyfriend and he will hook you up. Hahaha

Other highlights: Art Museum, Navy Yard, Rittenhouse Square, Love Park, Capogiro gelato, Wasabi House (little place on 12th and Pine that makes amazing iced ginger cinnamon tea), um um um… Chapterhouse coffee shop (9th and Bainbridge), First Friday is this Friday and it means free open galleries all over the city, Chinatown, Boathouse Row, Asian supermarkets along the east side of Washington Ave, the Comcast Building … that's all I can think of off the top of my head.


J Jordan

The Liberty Bell is a must when you're visiting Philly. The best time to go is around 5ish. There will be no school kids there at that time.

There is a great sandwich shop called Piasano's in the Italian Market, and in Fishtown. Look it up. The sandwiches are amazing there!

The Mutter Museum is cool medical oddity museum. It's kinda creepy!

Enjoy Philly!!!


love the love wall! NYC is probably one of my favorite cities! I don't know if you got a chance to go to John's pizza, but if you didn't you should check it out next time. It's a pizza place…. in an old church. How cool is that? I love Chinatown too. I get my best "designer" stuff there and super cool earrings!



I love the Underground Ben Franklin museum in Philly, but that's only good if you love beaten down, old museums, heh.

If you're not familiar with the concept of the Mummers…you might want to check out the Mummers Museum. But that's anther old, beaten down museum.

…gotta love Philly.

OH! I almost forgot!! CAPOGIRO'S. YES. Definitely.


Check out Reading Terminal Market to wander and buy snacks. Do the Rocky run by the Art museum steps. South Street for souvenirs. Are you planning a meet-up by any chance?


Next time I go to New York I definitely want to eat at one of David Chang's restaurants (I have heard so much about his Momofuku ramen) and am curious about trying a pretzel croissant!
If only it wasn't a 20 hour flight away…


Oh goodness, I love NY. Okay in Philly there is truly the most random breakfast restaurant that you really have to try. It's called Carman's Country Kitchen and please just trust me on this 🙂 She's only open Fri-Mon so hopefully you'll be there this weekend. She is one of the most eccentric and funny and crazy people ever and you will love her! Also the food is really good. If you do go, you gotta go in a group of just one or two because its really small.

Also in Philly, South Street is fun. You will have a great time, Philly is a cool city!


Oh My God (this is so important I had to spell it out instead of using OMG) go to Reading Terminal Market in Philly. It is foodie central. Don't miss it.


Where did you take that second photo (so I can copy you when I'm in NY this weekend)? I LOVE (…ha) it!

Are you coming to DC after Philly? I live right next to it. On the off-chance that you'll be stopping there, I have plenty of unsolicited (metro-accessible) suggestions:
-The Smithsonian American History Museum and the Freer & Sackler Galleries. The Newseum is amazing, full of really cool stuff, and has an amazing view from its terrace, but it can get pretty depressing and admission is $18 or so.
-At night, the monuments are beautiful and less crowded. The reflecting pool is currently under construction, but it's still worth a trip.
-The Kennedy Center has awesome free concerts.
-U Street corridor is a lot of fun. Busboys & Poets is a restaurant/bar/bookstore/venue there with a lot of vegan/veggie options, plus they regularly have a variety of open-mic nights and social-consciousness-related events. U St also has: Town, a fantastic gay club; the Black Cat (their cafe also has a ton of vegan/veggie options) for dance parties and concerts; U Street Music Hall, which is supposed to be amazing for dancing (it's been on my to-do list for months); and the best people watching.

Have a great (and safe) time!

Sarah Von Bargen

Thanks for all the awesome Philly advice, guys!

Liz, the love wall is in DUMBO (which I was completely unaware was the name of a neighborhood because I'm not a cool hipster)


Visited Philly for the first time about a month ago. Experienced a lovely earthquake. 🙂 It's a pretty awesome city – check out the central market (forgotten it's name) and South Street. South Street was brilliant – all vintage shops and cheesesteak restaurants and this amazing place called the Magic Garden. It's like this huge maze composed of mind-trippy mosaic.

Have fun!

A Warner

magical gardens. elfreth's alley. if you are into beer at all, eulogy tavern has anything you could ever want. do brunch at sabrina's in the italian market or fairmount. check out the eastern state penn. avoid pat's and geno's steaks and head to south street for jim's (who even does a mean vegetarian cheesesteak).


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