We had another mini vacation this past weekend, this time to NYC. Thanks to my parents who were visiting my aunt, we had the use of their apartment.
Because the weather was so dreadful Friday night, we elected to leave early Saturday morning. We hit the road a bit after 6, and were in the apartment before 10. It was absolutely beautiful weather, a rarity this summer. We hopped on the subway and headed to the American Folk Art Museum near MOMA. We had never been there before, and while the permanent exhibit was interesting, its not something I'm going to be running back to see again. What we really did love was a special exhibit of the work of a contemporary quilter whose works are influenced by kaleidoscopes. Absolutely stunning. I couldn't take photos in the gallery, but you can get a peek here:http://www.folkartmuseum.org/default.asp?id=2384
We then walked down to Chelsea. We rarely get the opportunity to just walk around Manhattan, so this was great fun. Chelsea's renovated warehouses, brownstones, galleries and restaurants were great for wandering around. We had a nice late lunch at Le Singe Vert (7th Ave at 19th) which felt very Parisian--rickety tables on the sidewalk, dogs underfoot, a French-accented owner kissing everyone, great moules frites.
We walked through the Chelsea Market to get an iced coffee, then climbed up to the High Line. Another little faux Paris moment, reminding us of the Promenade Plantee. They've done a wonderful job making the old elevated track into an urban walkway, with interesting native plantings, tables and lounges, views of the river and the city below.
We were astonished to see what's become of the old meatpacking district, where the butchering buildings have been turned into trendy shops and the like.
We continued walking down through the west Village, and finally ended up at Washington Square Park. Sat and watched the show for a while, and then met a friend at the Eight Street Winecellar, 28 W. 8th St. Under a beauty salon, this is a great little wine bar--quiet, no "scene", just nice wines and beers and little plates of food.
After saying goodbye, Larry and I headed back uptown. We had dinner at a simple neighborhood Japanese place, Gajyumaru on first and 86th. Japanese families eating, some interesting daily specials, gentle prices. We shared some enedami, a sashimi trio, two sushi rolls, and a beautifully cooked little piece of wild bass. Some excellent cold sake hit the spot.
On Sunday, we headed out to Brooklyn for brunch with friends. Park Slope reminded me of Boston's Back Bay, with street after street of brownstones, nice restaurants, and very earnest parents pushing double strollers.Had a very nice brunch at the 12th Street Bar and Grill. They dropped us off at the Museum afterward, and it was too bad it was raining, as I would have loved to have walked through the park and the Botanical Gardens.
How have I missed getting to the Brooklyn Museum all these years? It's a fabulous collection, much less daunting than the Met, with a fraction of the crowds. I loved the "American Identities" exhibit, which shows all manner of artworks grouped by theme. I also enjoyed seeing Judy Chicago's "The Dinner Party" and the Asian art galleries. It was also fun to wind around the contemporary art exhibits which let into restored 16th and 17th century period rooms.
Ate dinner around the corner from the apartment, in a cute Belgian restaurant with a tiny back patio. Good food, (burger for Larry, mussels for me) absolutely amazing french fries. B.Cafe, 75th Street between 2nd and 3rd.
I was mostly successful keeping to my eating plan.Restaurant eating is hard, with all the hidden fat and salt. I had mussels twice, not a hardship. Sushi is always a go, and at brunch they were nice enough to sub salad instead of the potatoes and biscuit with my mushroom omelet.I sipped from Larry's wine, and only tasted a few fries. Lots of walking, so we'll see what Mr. Scale says tomorrow.