Gourmand (one who takes great pleasure in food) is a word I’ve been called by some of my close friends and it’s most definitely the best word to describe my recent long weekend. After all, Fall Weekend holiday was the perfect excuse for a girls getaway in New York City! Luckily, with a lovely airbnb booked in East Village, my best girlfriends and I were ready to start on a long list of delicious places to visit. Unsurprisingly, right at the top of our list was The Fat Radish, Ippudo Ramen, and Chelsea Market. The Fat Radish was the newest addition to our list of must-try brunch spots–curtesy of my friend Ellie who constantly scouts out amazing finds for me! As for Ippudo–I just couldn’t wait for a bowl of their spicy Tonkotsu ramen. It sounded like the perfect throwback to Tokyo’s noodle shops I miss so dearly (oh but of course, Ippudo’s Hirata pork belly buns are to die for too!). And last, but definitely not least–Chelsea Market. Does it need any explanation? Oysters, donuts, crepes, beef pies, anything and everything. We were even lucky enough to grab a table at The Green Table!
When traveling with a food blogger, my friends have learned the golden rule: don’t touch until I take some pictures. But that being said, sometimes even I can’t help but sneak a couple bites in before snapping some shots too. So although I tried my best to include everything from the trip, some things–like the 4 boxes of Eataly pizza that were insanely amazing–are just not meant to be photographed!
In the end, everything I did my Fall weekend reminded me how deeply fabulous and delicious New York is. Enjoy!
The Fat Radish
The Fat Radish was a highlight of the weekend–I knew it the minute I saw its glossy exteriors, had a large sip of their sweet Red juice, and ordered their special of the day: Duck Hash. I’m a huge fan of duck so crispy duck with potatoes and perfectly fried eggs was the ideal brunch combination for me. But I have to say, The Fat Radish’s lemon ricotta pancakes were absolutely phenomenal. Yes, just as good as Bill’s ricotta pancakes with honeycomb butter–and considering how much I love Bill’s, that’s saying a lot! As for Ellie, she ordered the avocado toast with spicy poached eggs and absolutely loved it too–I think the sriracha added a really nice touch. All in all, brunch was nothing short of perfect–The Fat Radish definitely earned a spot on my repeat-list. If anything, I’d go back in hopes of the Duck Hash being on the menu again (and for the pancakes!).
(A shout out to Ellie for recommending this: you made New York extra delicious with your well-researched list of food! I have no idea what I’m going to do without you next semester.) We actually also took time to explore Chinatown (which is close by The Fat Radish) so dim sum from Joe’s Shanghai and other favorite snacks of ours, like black sesame bubble tea, are included in the collage at the end of post. Take a look!
Chelsea Market is always a fun place to go, especially when I can’t make up my mind on what to eat for lunch. Starting with Los Tacos’ flavorful pork tacos, we made our way to The Lobster Place for some raw oysters (the lobster was from a previous visit, but definitely so worth it!), and ended at The Green Table. Although I didn’t go to the Doughnuttery this time around, I included pictures of their lovely fried donuts from my last trip to New York. They’re little fried balls of wonderfulness, definitely don’t miss their classic glazed donuts with rainbow sprinkles!
Of all the things we had, the Green Table’s chicken pot pie and blackened market fish sandwich definitely stood out the most. Even my roommate Lauren, who joined us at the end of the long weekend, adored the chicken pot pie–she’s French and a slightly picky eater when it comes to American food so it must be saying a lot right? I also adored my blackened fish sandwich, especially with the crunchy and fresh seasonal coleslaw (the portion is on the slightly big side, but with a ravenous appetite–like mine–completely manageable!) The Green Table just opened when we walked in but immediately all the tables were filled so definitely make a reservation or get there early if you want to snag a spot in this ‘charming organic eatery’.
(Also, to my fabulous friend Alana who joined us for brunch: it was so great seeing you in New York for Fall Break, especially since we got to catch up! Next time, we’ll go on another brunch hunt with some serious shopping afterwards okay? lots of love x.)
Balthazar has been one of my favorite places to go in New York (and London!) for a while. So even though I didn’t dedicate a proper meal there during Fall weekend, I was able to run into Balthazar’s lovely bakery–maybe even my favorite part of Balthazar–and grab some of their fresh pastries. Seeing how busy the bakery was, we ended up bringing our pastries back to our flat in East Village and devouring them there.
My absolute favorite is Balthazar’s Sticky Bun. I absolutely adore the sweetness of the sticky bun topped with crispy pecans. It just fits Fall so well–as did the pumpkin pie of course! Oh, and it may seem counterintuitive, but the Mixed Berries Fruit Tart ended up balancing out the creaminess of all the other pastries perfectly (this is a true sweettooth statement: a pastry balancing out another pastry!)
And for those wondering: yes, we finished all four desserts by ourselves. Every single bite of it! It’s not good to leave food behind, especially when it’s morsels of delicious Balthazar pastries.
Ippudo’s signature spicy Tonkotsu broth with its perfectly chewy ramen is one authentic taste of Tokyo in a bowl. With locations in East Village and Midtown, Ippudo’s never ending popularity is a testament to its amazing ramen–especially since when Ellie and I went, the amount of サラリマン(Japanese salaryman) present made me felt like I was back in Shinjukuk indulging in a bowl of ramen! And of course, the Hirata Pork Buns–the pork was braised beautifully and with a dash of spicy mayo–was the perfect appetizer (Ellie and I had to refrain from getting another order because it was a so good). And lastly, the Hirata Milk was similar to a Japanese anmitsu with green tea ice cream. Normally, I wouldn’t go for dessert after such big bowls of ramen and pork buns, but it was a treat-yourself-day so Ellie and I opted for the entire appetizer-ramen-dessert menu!
Ippudo never dissapoints, whether it’s in Tokyo or New York. Their Karakamen is especially delicious with a side of nita-mago (soft boiled egg) so I’d definitely recommend that for first-timers. For Ellie and I, it was a hearty and delicious combination for two girls before a long day of shopping and more food!
Spot Dessert Bar is actually a completely new find for me. And since I’ve heard so many people rave about this dessert bar in St. Mark’s Place, it was necessary for me to try as many of their Asian-fusion desserts I could get my hands on! Ellie and I met up with a friend who graduated last year, and together, we were all pretty confident we could conquer 5 desserts (and yes, we did end up dividing and conquering!). Lauren’s long time favorite has been Spot’s Chocolate Green Tea Lava Cake, and after taking a big bite, I must say, French girls know their desserts well. The gooey green tea core was just phenomenal with the cookie crumbs on the side. Plus, it’s hard to say no to chocolate and green tea fused together so splendidly. Next on my favorites list is Spot’s Golden Toast. The crunchiness of the toast with ice cream, fresh cream, and strawberries was delicious. If I wasn’t trying to conquer 5 desserts, I would definitely eat the whole toast by myself! And although the Pecan Cheesecake was slightly underwhelming, I did love the Mango Madness dessert and the Chocolate Fudge Cake.
Truthfully, I loved Spot Dessert Bar mainly because it was open so late and the overall atmosphere inside was just fun and relaxed. It’s a perfect spot for a get together, especially over endless plates of dessert with a lovely Asian flair!
All in all, New York was a delicious weekend–I almost wrote ‘busy’ but crossed it out! I was busy eating the entirety of the long weekend but since I enjoyed it so much, it was more a deliciously fun ‘busy’. When I first started this blog back in London, I found myself with free time to blog all the time. But now, as I’m finishing off my last year at university back in Baltimore, it’s much harder to blog when there’s so much to do. Plus, it’s my partner in crime Ellie’s last semester so in between getting late night snacks with her to other shenanigan, there’s too little time to write!
Nonetheless, I have a couple more posts coming soon–my Tokyo area guide in particular, since I have so many friends headed to Tokyo for Christmas holiday and I can’t wait to share all my favorite places with them! There’s also a couple local places in Baltimore I adore, so I’ll be sharing those soon too.
Until next time!